Chinese History

Chinese dynasties described in simple terminology and events

Young officials of the Qing court, military officers, and students were inspired by an emerging public opinion formed by intellectuals such as Liang Qichao and the revolutionary ideas of Sun Yat-sen. A localised military uprising, the Wuchang Uprising, began on 10 October 1911, in Wuchang (Today part of Wuhan), and soon spread. The Republic of China was proclaimed on 1 January 1912, ending 2,000 years of dynastic rule.

Along the River During the Qingming Festival

Qingming Shanghe Tu, is a painting by the Song dynasty painter Zhang Zeduan (1085–1145). It captures the daily life of people and the landscape of the capital, Bianjing (present-day Kaifeng) during the Northern Song.

The Battle of Langfang: boxers fighting the Eight-Nation Alliance

An Eight-Nation Alliance sent the Seymour Expedition of Japanese, Russian, British, Italian, German, French, American, and Austrian troops to relieve the siege, but they were forced to retreat by Boxer and Qing troops at the Battle of Langfang.

Scholar-officials in the Ming Dynasty

During the Ming dynasty, the Neo-Confucian doctrines of the Song scholar Zhu Xi were embraced by the court and the Chinese literati at large, although the direct line of his school was destroyed by the Yongle Emperor's extermination of the ten degrees of kinship of Fang Xiaoru in 1402.

Society of the Song dynasty

Chinese society during the Song dynasty (960–1279) was marked by political and legal reforms, a philosophical revival of Confucianism, and the development of cities beyond administrative purposes into centers of trade, industry, and maritime commerce.

History of banking in Imperial China

An early Chinese banking institution was called the draft bank or piaohao (票号) in Chinese, also known as Shanxi banks because they were owned primarily by Shanxi merchants.

Han-Manchu marriages and its historical significance

The Qing victory was overwhelmingly the result of the defection of the Ming dynasty's Liaodong military establishment and other defectors, with the Manchu military playing a very minor role. 

Construction of the Forbidden City

The Forbidden City (Chinese: 故宫; pinyin: Gùgōng) is a palace complex in central Beijing, China. It houses the Palace Museum, and was the former Chinese imperial palace from the Ming dynasty to the end of the Qing dynasty (the years 1420 to 1912). The Forbidden City served as the home of emperors and their households and was the ceremonial and political center of Chinese government for almost 500 years.

Mongol Empire: the largest contiguous land empire in history

The Mongol Empire — at its height the largest contiguous empire in history — had a lasting impact, unifying large regions. Some of these (such as eastern and western Russia and the western parts of China) remain unified today.

Transition from Sui Dynasty to Tang Dynasty

The transition from Sui to Tang started roughly around 613 when Emperor Yang of Sui launched his first of three failed campaigns against Goguryeo, and ended in 628, when Emperor Gaozu's son Li Shimin annexed the agrarian rebel ruler Liang Shidu's state of Liang.

Emperor Yang of Sui

In 594, Yang Guang urged Emperor Wen to offer sacrifices to Mount Tai—a traditional ceremony for emperors, but one that was rarely carried out. Emperor Wen rejected the elaborate traditional ceremonies, but did carry out a reduced ceremony at Mount Tai.

The equal-field system to reduce inequality and improve productivity

 land-equalization system was a historical system of land ownership and distribution in China used from the Six Dynasties to mid-Tang dynasty.

The Grand Canal that serves not only as a means of transportation

The Jing-Hang Grand Canal linking the Yellow River and Yangtze River nominally runs between Beijing and Hangzhou over a total length of 1,794 km. Its main role throughout its history was the transport of grain to the capital. 

Rise of Northern Wei (386–535) and the Sinicization movement

With the fall of the Northern Liang in 439, Emperor Taiwu united northern China, ending the Sixteen Kingdoms period and beginning the Northern and Southern dynasties period with their southern rivals, the Liu Song.

Battle of Fei River

Legend has it that, as Fu Jiān escaped, he screamed to the sky, "Heaven has annihilated me!"(天亡我也!)

Shang Yang and his political reforms

Shang Yang was a statesman and reformer of the State of Qin during the Warring States period. His policies laid the administrative and political foundations that would enable Qin to conquer all of China and unite the country for the first time.

Li Si, most capable politician behind the unified Qin empire

Believing in a highly bureaucratic system, Li Si is considered to have been central to the efficiency of the state of Qin and the success of its military conquest. He was also instrumental in systematizing standard measures and currency in post-unified China.

Zhao Gao points to a deer and calls it a horse

Zhao Gao (died 207 BC), allegedly a eunuch, served as a close aide to all three emperors of the Qin dynasty – Qin Shi Huang, Qin Er Shi and Ziying – and was regarded as having played an instrumental role in the downfall of the dynasty.

Eunuchs, castration and court service

The eunuchs at the Forbidden City during the later Qing period were infamous for their corruption, stealing as much as they could. The position of eunuch at the Forbidden City offered such opportunities for theft and corruption and China was such a poor country that countless men willingly become eunuchs in order to live a better life.

Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor and the Terracotta Army

Located at the northern foot of Lishan Mountain, 35 kilometers northeast of Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, Qinshihuang Mausoleum is the tomb of Emperor Qinshihuang, founder...

Nine major enigmas of Qin Shihuang Mausoleum

Qin Shihuang, the first creator of a unified dynasty in Chinese history, died at the age of 50 during his tour of inspection. Emperor Qin Shihuang's...

Su Shi, one of the most accomplished figures in classical Chinese literature

The Song Empire was administered and run by scholar officials who were selected through a meritocratic system of examination and imperially orchestrated appointments. One...

Jing Ke’s failed assassination attempt of Qin King

The last and by far most famous of assassins in Sima Qian’s chronicles is Jing Ke, the man who tried and nearly succeeded in...

The Story of Laozi

The Shiji (Records of the Historian) by the Han dynasty (206 B.C.E.–220 C.E.) court scribe and historian Sima Qian (ca. 145–86 B.C.E.) offers a “biography” of...

The Complete Works Of Chuang Tzu Translated by Burton Watson

Section ONE - FREE AND EASY WANDERING IN THE NORTHERN DARKNESS there is a fish and his name is K'un. The K'un is so huge...

Imperial examination of Han Dynasty

Chinese imperial examinations were a civil service examination system in Imperial China to select candidates for the state bureaucracy. The exams were based on knowledge of the classics and literary style,...

Seven Military Classics

The Civil Strategy provides the narrative of how Jiang Ziya came to dictate the Six Secret Teachings to King Wen, and elaborates on how the state must be organized in order to provide a logistical base for any future military expansion.

Qin unites China (247–221 BC)

King Zhuangxiang of Qin ruled for only three years. He was succeeded by his son Zheng, who unlike the two elderly kings that preceded him...

Partition of Jin into three states

Jin was unique among the major states in a major respect; whereas other states often enfeoffed the cadet branches of the ruling house, Jin had a policy of exiling or disempowering its own cadet houses.

Social status of businessmen in imperial China

In Ancient pre-Imperial China,the tribes living in what is now the Yellow River valley were practising agriculture. Merchants were highly regarded as necessary for the circulation of essential...

The Shi as a noble occupation

The four categories of the people (四民) was an occupation classification used in ancient China and is considered a central part of the feudal social structure. These were the shi (gentry scholars), the nong (peasant farmers), the gong (artisans and...

History of China: timeline

What is now China was inhabited by Homo erectus more than a million years ago. Recent study shows that the stone tools found at Xiaochangliang site are magnetostratigraphically dated to 1.36 million years ago. 

Great Flood of China

In ancient times, it was believed that the Yellow River flowed from Heaven as a continuation of the Milky Way.

Religious worships of the Shang Dynasty

The Shang dynasty is the earliest dynasty of traditional Chinese history supported by archaeological evidence. The Shang religion was characterized by a combination of animism, the...

Shang Dynasty

Since many historians question whether the Xia Dynasty really existed, the Shang Dynasty may have actually been the first in China and the origin of what has come to be recognized as Chinese culture.

The Yin Dynasty: Sima Qian’s Historical Records

Hsieh of Yin's mother was Chien Ti, who was one of the daughters of Yusung and the secondary wife of Emperor Ku. She was going...

Erlitou culture: Stunning Capital of Xia Dynasty Unearthed

Chinese archaeologists found a large-scale building foundation in Erlitou Ruins of Yanshi, central China's Henan Province, which belongs to the later period of Xia...

Longshan culture: Black Pottery Culture in northern China from about 3000 to 1900...

A distinctive feature of the Longshan culture was the high level of skill in pottery making, including the use of pottery wheels, producing thin-walled and polished...

Fuxi: inventor of hunting, fishing and cooking

In Chinese mythology, Fu Xi (伏羲), mid-2800s B.C.E., was the first of the mythical Three Sovereigns of ancient China. He was a cultural hero, reputed to have...

Nuwa: the first creative Chinese deity

In Chinese mythology, Nüwa (女娲) is a Chinese mythological character best known for creating and reproducing people after a great calamity. Some scholars suggest that the female...

Shennong: The God-King of Chinese Medicine and Agriculture

Shennong(神农), which means “God farmer” or “God peasant”, is a deity in Chinese religion. He is a mythical sage healer and ruler of prehistoric...

Original Record of the Three Sovereigns

Note: The Three Sovereigns and Five Emperors were two groups of mythological rulers or deities in ancient northern China who in later history have been assigned dates in a period...

Yu the Great

Yu the Great (大禹) was long regarded as an ideal ruler and kind of philosopher king by the ancient Chinese. He was a legendary ruler in ancient China famed for...

Massive flood may have led to China’s earliest empire -Xia Dynasty

China finds 3,600-year-old palace Chinese archaeologists recently found a palace dating back to about 3,600 years ago at the Erlitou Bronze Age site in Henan...

The Hsia Dynasty

Yü of Hsia was styled Wênming (literally 'accomplishments and orders'). Yü's father was Kun, whose father was the Emperor Ch‘uanhsü, whose father was Ch‘angyi, whose...

Toqto’a of Yuan Dynasty: the Grand Historian who compiled histories of three dynasties

In 1343, with an imperial order, Toqto’a led a team of officials to quickly compile dynastic histories of the Liao, Jin and Song dynasties.

Two Sima Masters as China’s most honored and popular historians

In five thousand years of Chinese history, Sima Clan family produced the best known and most important historians. Sima Qian and Sima Guang top the list.

Emperor Taizong of Tang hoped for long lasting peace for his dynasty

We must make sure both the emperor and his officials behave with caution until the end. This way the country shall have long lasting peace, better than the old times

Emperor Taizong of Tang Dynasty talks about governance

When a government is corrupt and its ruler is failing its people, the people would be pleased to see its collapse. Then the whole country would welcome a new leader.

Original Record of the Five Gods (or five emperors)

Huangti (Yellow god) was the son of Shaotien. His surname was Kungsun, and his prename Hsienyüan. Born a genius he could speak when a baby,...

Hundreds of Tiny Terracotta Warriors Found Guarding 2,100-Year-Old Chinese Site

Inside a 2,100-year-old pit in China, archaeologists have discovered a miniature army of sorts: carefully arranged chariots and mini statues of cavalry, watchtowers, infantry...

Massive Pyramid, Lost City and Ancient Human Sacrifices Unearthed in China

A 4,300-year-old city, which has a massive step pyramid that is at least 230 feet (70 meters) high and spans 59 acres (24 hectares)...

Stone tools found in China could be oldest evidence of human life outside Africa

Discovery of simple stone tools suggests human ancestors were in Asia as early as 2.1m years ago. The remains of crudely fashioned stone tools unearthed...

Earliest animal footprints found in Yangtze Gorges of China

The earliest known footprints left by an animal on earth, dating back at least 541 million years, have been uncovered in China. It is unclear...

Burying the Scholars Alive: On the Origin of a Confucian Martyrs’ Legend

The alleged misdeeds of Qin Shihuang climaxing in his order to bury four hundred and sixty Confucian scholars alive, made material for an often-recalled story during two millennia.

Laozi, a legendary Daoist philosopher

Laozi (Lao-tzu, fl. 6th cn. B.C.E.) Laozi is the name of a legendary Daoist philosopher, the alternate title of the early Chinese text better known in the...

The Complete Works Of Chuang Tzu Translated by Burton Watson Part 4

Section TWENTY-SIX - EXTERNAL THINGS EXTERNAL THINGS CANNOT be counted on. Hence Lung-feng was executed, Pi Kan was sentenced to death, Prince Chi feigned madness,...

The Complete Works Of Chuang Tzu Translated by Burton Watson Part 3

Section EIGHTEEN - PERFECT HAPPINESS IS THERE SUCH A THING as perfect happiness in the world or isn't there? Is there some way to keep...

The Complete Works Of Chuang Tzu Translated by Burton Watson Part 2

Section NINE - HORSES' HOOFS HORSES' HOOFS ARE MADE for treading frost and snow, their coats for keeping out wind and cold. To munch grass,...

禹貢 – Tribute of Yu

Yu divided the land. Following the course of the hills, he cut down the trees. He determined the highest hills and largest rivers (in...

益稷 – Yi and Ji

The Di said, 'Come Yu, you also must have excellent words (to bring before me).' Yu did obeisance, and said, 'Oh! what can I...

皋陶謨 – Counsels of Gao-yao

Examining into antiquity, (we find that) Gao-Yao said, 'If (the sovereign) sincerely pursues the course of his virtue, the counsels (offered to him) will...

大禹謨 – Counsels of the Great Yu

Examining into antiquity, (we find that) the Great Yu was styled Wen-ming. Having arranged and divided (the land), all to the four seas, in...

舜典 – Canon of Shun

Examining into antiquity, (we find that) the Di Shun was styled Chong-hua. His character was entirely conformed to (that of) the (former) Di, he...

堯典 – Canon of Yao

Examining into antiquity, (we find that) the Di Yao was styled Fang-xun. He was reverential, intelligent, accomplished, and thoughtful - naturally and without effort....

Mencius went to see king Hui of Liang

Mencius went to see king Hui of Liang. The king said, 'Venerable sir, since you have not counted it far to come here, a...

Banquet at Hongmen

King Xiang accepted the jade and put it on the table. Yafu took the jade pecks, put them on the ground and broke them with his sword, saying (to Xiang Yu): "Ah! You idiot, I cannot help you! It shall be Pei Gong who will defeat you. We all will be imprisoned by him!" Upon arriving in his camp, Pei Gong executed Cao Wushang.

殷本紀 – Annals of Yin

From Qi to Tang the Completer there were eight changes of the capital. Tang at first dwelt in Bo, choosing the residence of the first king, and the 'Emperor's Announcement' was written.

夏本紀 – Annals of the Xia Dynasty

Yu of Xia was styled Wenming. Yu's father was Gun, whose father was the Emperor Zhuanxu, whose father was Changyi, whose father was Huangdi;...

五帝本紀 – Annals of the Five Emperors

Huangdi (Yellow emperor) was the son of Shaodian. His surname was Gongsun, and his prename Xuanyuan. Born a genius he could speak when a...

Records of the Grand Historian by Sima Qian

The Records of the Grand Historian (太史公書), now usually known as the Shǐjì (史記, "The Scribe's Records"), is a monumental history of ancient China...

Massive Chinese Sun Altar Provides Clues About Country’s Mysterious Past

The remnants of a 3,000 year old sun altar have been discovered in north-west China, offering clues about the region’s ancient past. The circular ruins...

China’s Southwestern Silk Road in World History

As Robert Clark notes in The Global Imperative, "there is no doubt that trade networks like the Silk Road made possible the flourishing and...

Empress Dowager Cixi: listening to politics behind the curtains

For many years, the mainstream view of Empress Dowager Cixi was that she was devious despot who contributed in no small part to China's...

Eastern Depot and the Embroidered Uniform Guard

Dong Chang (东厂), translated as Eastern Depot, was a Ming dynasty spy and secret police agency run by eunuchs. It was created by the...

History of Goguryeo

Note: The Chinese government's attempted characterization of Goguryeo as a possible regional Chinese power in recent times has received heated criticisms and complaints from both...

Why Li Bai and Du Fu Are Still China’s Most Popular Poets

If you ever thought the popular worship of long-gone bards was a uniquely British phenomenon, you may be in for a surprise. The Mandarin...

Trump outraged South Koreans by saying Korea used to be part of China. Is...

In the traditional Chinese Confucian view of the world, China is the Middle Kingdom between heaven and Earth, and everywhere else on Earth is subordinate to some degree.

Tibet Timeline

A chronology of key events: 7th-9th century - Namri Songzen and descendants begin to unify Tibetan-inhabited areas and conquer neighbouring territories, in competition with China. 822...

Relics of Xiangxiong Kingdom

According to the legendary, the relics of Xiangxiong Kingdom in western Tibet was the earliest civilization center on the Tibetan plateau. Xiangxiong means "land...

Mawangdui

awangdui (马王堆; literally: "King Ma's Mound") is an archaeological site located in Changsha. The site consists of two saddle-shaped hills and contained the tombs of three people from the western Han dynasty

China: The Influence of History

How does history influence Chinese thought and behaviour today? As China’s power and influence continue to grow in Asia and beyond, many analysts look to...

The Great Wall of China in history

The Great Wall of China was intended primarily to protect the cities, agricultural fields, and trade routes of settled farmers from raids and invasions by nomadic peoples from the north and west.

China’s ‘League of Legends’ Criticized for Rewriting History

China’s hit mobile game “Honour of Kings” was criticized by a Party newspaper article for misrepresenting historic figures.

Yellow Turban Rebellion

The Yellow Turban Rebellion was a peasant revolt in China against the Han dynasty. The uprising broke out in the year 184 during the reign...

New Discoveries May Rewrite History of China’s Terra-Cotta Warriors

In the four decades since mysterious terra-cotta statues first came to light in northern China, archaeologists have uncovered a whole lifelike army. But that wasn’t the only secret hidden underground there.
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The Secret Tomb of China’s 1st Emperor: Will We Ever See Inside?

Buried deep under a hill in central China, surrounded by an underground moat of poisonous mercury, lies an entombed emperor who's been undisturbed for...

Huo Qubing: Young General of Military Might

A man of few words, Huo Qubing was nevertheless quite wise and exceptionally brave in battle. He was deemed a military genius as, during six major attacks he led against the Xiongnu, hundreds of thousands of enemy soldiers were killed or injured.

10 Major Achievements of Song Dynasty of China

The reign of the Song Dynasty lasted over three centuries from 960 A.D. to 1279 A.D. It was marked by a period of sustained...

Women in the Tang Dynasty

Concepts of women's social rights and social status during the Tang era were notably liberal-minded for the period.

Personality and achievements of Emperor Kangxi

The Kangxi Emperor's reign of 61 years makes him the longest-reigning emperor in Chinese history (although his grandson, the Qianlong Emperor, had the longest period of de facto power) and one of the longest-reigning rulers in the world.

The influence of An Lushan Rebellion

The An Lushan Rebellion was a devastating rebellion against the Tang dynasty of China. The rebellion overtly began on 16 December 755, when general...

British expedition to Tibet (1903–1904)

The authorities in British India renewed their interest in Tibet in the late 19th century, and a number of Indians entered the region, first...

Qiu Chuji: the Taoist monk who pacified Genghis Khan

Qiu Chuji (丘处机; 1148 – 23 July 1227), also known Changchun zi (長春子) was one of the Seven Daoist Disciples of Wang Chongyang, founder of...

Destruction Of Chinese Books In The Peking Siege Of 1900

PAPER The destruction of cultural treasures has attracted the fascination of scholars for centuries and no more than in modern times. Since before Alexandria, the...

A Historical Note of Chinese lyric poetry

Although the oldest surviving textual examples of surviving ci (词) or lyric poetry are from 8th century CE Dunhuang manuscripts, beginning in the poetry of the...

How to remember Koxinga: Contested legacy

EARLIER this month China’s first aircraft-carrier set out from the port city of Dalian to begin her longest sea trial to date, one that...

Lin Zexu and the destruction of opium

Lin Zexu (30 August 1785 – 22 November 1850), was a Chinese scholar-official of the Qing dynasty best known for his role in the...

Li Shizhen and his Compendium

Li Shizhen (李時珍, July 3, 1518  – 1593),  was a Han Chinese polymath, medical doctor, scientist, pharmacologist, herbalist and acupuncturist of the Ming dynasty....

The technical encyclopedia of the Tiangong Kaiwu

The Tiangong Kaiwu (天工開物), or The Exploitation of the Works of Nature was a Chinese encyclopedia compiled by Song Yingxing. It was published in...

Han Feizi and the legalist school

The grouping together of thinkers that would eventually be dubbed "Fa-Jia" or "Legalists" can be traced to Han Fei (280–236 BC).  On rare occasion...

Legalism in Chinese History

Qin unification of 221 BCE could have become the triumph of Legalism. The rise of the state of Qin started with Shang Yang; and...

Li Si: one of the most important figures in Chinese history

Li Si (Chinese: 李斯; c. 280 BC – September or October 208 BC) was a Chinese politician of the Qin dynasty. He served as the...

Why Are Hundreds of Harvard Students Studying Ancient Chinese Philosophy?

The professor who teaches Classical Chinese Ethical and Political Theory claims, "This course will change your life." Picture a world where human relationships are challenging, narcissism...

Government of the Han Dynasty

If the emperor rejected a court conference decision, he risked alienating his high ministers. Nevertheless, emperors sometimes did reject the majority opinion reached at court conferences.

Roads, bridges, and canals of the Han Dynasty

In order to facilitate commerce and communication as well as speed the process of tax collection and movement of military troops, the Han government sponsored the building of new roads, bridges, and canal waterways. 

Structural engineering of the Han Capitals

What remains of Han-dynasty architecture are ruins of brick and rammed earth walls (including aboveground city walls and underground tomb walls), rammed earth platforms for terraced altars and halls, funerary stone or brick pillar-gates, and scattered ceramic roof tiles that once adorned timber halls.

Agriculture of Han Dynasty

Tools and methods Modern archaeologists have unearthed Han iron farming tools throughout China, from Inner Mongolia in the north to Yunnan in the south. The spade,...

Wei River and Chinese Earliest Civilization

Wei River, Chinese (Pinyin) Wei He or (Wade-Giles romanization) Wei Ho, river in Gansu and Shaanxi provinces, north-central China, a western tributary of the...
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The Yangshao Civilization in Chinese Culture

The Yangshao culture is the term for an ancient civilization that existed in what is now central China (Henan, Shanxi, and Shaanxi provinces primarily)...
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China’s Grand Canal

The largest canal in the world, the Grand Canal of China wends its way through four provinces, beginning at Beijing and ending at Hangzhou....

What Was the Cultural Revolution?

Between 1966 and 1976, the young people of China rose up in an effort to purge the nation of the "Four Olds": old customs, old culture, old habits and old ideas.

Why Did Han China Collapse?

The Han Dynasty (206 BCE - 221 CE) ruled over such a pivotal era in the history of China that the majority ethnic group...

Bao Zheng

Bao Zheng (包拯; 11 April 999 – 20 May 1062), commonly known as Bao Gong (包公, "Lord Bao"), was a government officer during the...
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Xuanzang’s pilgrimage

The Buddhist monk Xuanzang (玄奘, 602–664 ) became famous for his seventeen-year overland journey to India, which is recorded in detail in the classic Chinese...

Reforms in the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom

The Taiping Heavenly Kingdom (太平天国) was an oppositional state in China from 1851 to 1864, supporting the overthrow of the Qing dynasty by Hong Xiuquan and his followers.

Debate on Travels of Marco Polo

An authoritative version of Marco Polo's book does not and cannot exist, for the early manuscripts differ significantly. The published editions of his book...

Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove

The Seven Sages are Ji Kang, Liu Ling, Ruan Ji, Ruan Xian, Xiang Xiu, Wang Rong and Shan Tao.  (阮籍、嵇康、山涛、刘伶、阮咸、向秀、王戎). The Seven Sages of the...

The Five Hegemons of the Spring and Autumn Period

Hegemony of Qi (685–643 BC) The first hegemon was Duke Huan of Qi (r. 685–643 BC). With the help of his prime minister, Guan Zhong,...

Quotes of Xun Zi

Xún Zǐ or Hsün Tzu (荀子 or 荀况; born Zhao c.312 BC - 230 BC) was a Chinese Confucian philosopher. Quotes The person attempting to...

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Women in the Tang Dynasty

Concepts of women's social rights and social status during the Tang era were notably liberal-minded for the period.

Personality and achievements of Emperor Kangxi

The Kangxi Emperor's reign of 61 years makes him the longest-reigning emperor in Chinese history (although his grandson, the Qianlong Emperor, had the longest period of de facto power) and one of the longest-reigning rulers in the world.

Qin Shi Huang’s Names and Titles

From Qi to Tang the Completer there were eight changes of the capital. Tang at first dwelt in Bo, choosing the residence of the first king, and the 'Emperor's Announcement' was written.

Roads, bridges, and canals of the Han Dynasty

In order to facilitate commerce and communication as well as speed the process of tax collection and movement of military troops, the Han government sponsored the building of new roads, bridges, and canal waterways. 

Agriculture of Han Dynasty

Tools and methods Modern archaeologists have unearthed Han iron farming tools throughout China, from Inner Mongolia in the north to Yunnan in the south. The spade,...

Was Qin Shi Huang truly a tyrant?

Qin Shi Huang ( 秦始皇; "First Emperor of Qin"; 18 February 259 BC – 10 September 210 BC) was the founder of the Qin dynasty and was the first...

The Battle of Muye

The Battle of Muye (牧野之战, c. 1046 bc) was a battle fought in ancient China between the Zhou and Shang. The Zhou victory led to the Shang...

Battle of Red Cliffs

The Battle of Red Cliffs, otherwise known as the Battle of Chibi, was a decisive battle fought at the end of the Han dynasty,...

Qiu Chuji: the Taoist monk who pacified Genghis Khan

Qiu Chuji (丘处机; 1148 – 23 July 1227), also known Changchun zi (長春子) was one of the Seven Daoist Disciples of Wang Chongyang, founder of...

Bao Zheng

Bao Zheng (包拯; 11 April 999 – 20 May 1062), commonly known as Bao Gong (包公, "Lord Bao"), was a government officer during the...

The influence of An Lushan Rebellion

The An Lushan Rebellion was a devastating rebellion against the Tang dynasty of China. The rebellion overtly began on 16 December 755, when general...

Contention of a Hundred Schools of Thought

The Hundred Schools of Thought (Chinese: 諸子百家) were philosophies and schools that flourished from the 6th century to 221 BC, during the Spring and...

Early Life of Liu Bang

In imperial Han myth, Liu Bang was a descendant of the mythical Emperor Yao, who descended from the Yellow Emperor. It is a common practice...

Why Did Han China Collapse?

The Han Dynasty (206 BCE - 221 CE) ruled over such a pivotal era in the history of China that the majority ethnic group...
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The Secret Tomb of China’s 1st Emperor: Will We Ever See Inside?

Buried deep under a hill in central China, surrounded by an underground moat of poisonous mercury, lies an entombed emperor who's been undisturbed for...

Three Departments and Six Ministries

The Three Departments and Six Ministries system was the main central administrative structure adopted in Imperial China. While its separate departments first took shape...

Yellow Turban Rebellion

The Yellow Turban Rebellion was a peasant revolt in China against the Han dynasty. The uprising broke out in the year 184 during the reign...

Li Si: one of the most important figures in Chinese history

Li Si (Chinese: 李斯; c. 280 BC – September or October 208 BC) was a Chinese politician of the Qin dynasty. He served as the...

Huo Qubing: Young General of Military Might

A man of few words, Huo Qubing was nevertheless quite wise and exceptionally brave in battle. He was deemed a military genius as, during six major attacks he led against the Xiongnu, hundreds of thousands of enemy soldiers were killed or injured.

Yuan dynasty

The Yuan Dynasty was formally proclaimed in 1271, when the Great Khan of Mongol, Kublai Khan, one of the grandsons of Genghis Khan, assumed...
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China’s Grand Canal

The largest canal in the world, the Grand Canal of China wends its way through four provinces, beginning at Beijing and ending at Hangzhou....

Wei River and Chinese Earliest Civilization

Wei River, Chinese (Pinyin) Wei He or (Wade-Giles romanization) Wei Ho, river in Gansu and Shaanxi provinces, north-central China, a western tributary of the...

Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms

The period of political disunity between the Tang and the Song, known as the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period, lasted from 907 to...

Records of the Grand Historian by Sima Qian

The Records of the Grand Historian (太史公書), now usually known as the Shǐjì (史記, "The Scribe's Records"), is a monumental history of ancient China...

History of Goguryeo

Note: The Chinese government's attempted characterization of Goguryeo as a possible regional Chinese power in recent times has received heated criticisms and complaints from both...

Government of the Han Dynasty

If the emperor rejected a court conference decision, he risked alienating his high ministers. Nevertheless, emperors sometimes did reject the majority opinion reached at court conferences.

The Five Hegemons of the Spring and Autumn Period

Hegemony of Qi (685–643 BC) The first hegemon was Duke Huan of Qi (r. 685–643 BC). With the help of his prime minister, Guan Zhong,...

Battle of Changping

The Battle of Changping (長平之戰) was a military campaign that took place during the Warring States period in ancient China. It concluded in 260...

Death of Liu Bang

Emperor Gaozu was wounded by a stray arrow during the campaign against Ying Bu. He became seriously ill and remained in his inner chambers...

Emperor Taizu of Song

Emperor Taizu of Song (21 March 927 – 14 November 976), personal name Zhao Kuangyin(赵匡胤), courtesy name Yuanlang, was the founder and first emperor of...