There is no solid evidence about the exact origin date of the country yet we can say that this is one of those ancient civilizations which is still impacting positively to the modern world. If we consider the mythologies and the historical tales then we can conclude that Yu was the first emperor who ruled over the country. It is said that Xia Dynasty ruled in the country from 2100- 1600 BC but let me make it very clear there is no concrete proof of it and even it can’t be said with confidence that Xia was the first dynasty in China as there is no written proof of its existence and also the dynasty that followed Xia didn’t give any clue of the earlier dynasty.
Continue reading this informative article and know about the ruling dynasties of China who were believed to be the highest and the most famous cradles of the Chinese Civilization.
What Changes did Shang Dynasty Bring in the Country?
The dynasty was popular as polytheists as they used to worship many gods yet their main deity was Di. Before this dynasty, there were no such rituals dedicated to the ancestors but Shang Dynasty brought the custom of worshipping ancestors. They used to believe that the soul of the ancestors intervenes in the livelihood of the living generation and this is why they initiated the ritual of giving offerings to the ancestors. China celebrates Ghost festival every year and show their respect and honor to the ancestors. The worst thing about this dynasty was that during this period Chinese were burdened with slavery and those who used to get prisoned during the wars were made slave. Human sacrifice was the other saddening part of the civilization and there was a custom that if a king had died then his slaves and servants also had to sacrifice their lives either by committing suicide or they were murdered so that they can accompany their owner after the lives also.
Shang Dynasty was however thrown out by the Zhou Dynasty in 1022 BC and this is how Zhou Dynasty came in the rule.
After succeeding Shang dynasty, Zhou took over the control on country in the year 1022 BC and continued its rule till 221 BC. It had been segregated into different periods viz. western period and then Autumn and Spring period and Warring states period which was believed to be the last period of the dynasty. Before Zhou Dynasty, transportation and communication were quite slow and this is why it was difficult to put control over a vast area by any of the ruler. Zhou created the feudal state to solve this long lasting issue. One more attractive feature of this dynasty is they followed a sequence to perform the tasks for example rulers used to give lands to their followers and then followers used to provide them with soldiers and chariots required during the war. Below followers, there used to come officials who used to work as administrators and generals and the last level of the chain was filled up by the peasants who were serving their duty as a food supplier.
Achievements of Zhou– They brought some major developments in the field of technology like this was the only time of iron invention which was used to make weapons used in the war till 650 BC and then later in the 500 BC Chinese started using it to make any types of tools and it was not only limited to weapons. And by 400 BC Chinese started using iron as faring plows drawn by oxen.
IMPERIAL CHINA 221 BC-1912 AD)
Qin Dynasty in China (221- 206 BC)
This was the first kingdom in China which worked for the unity in the country. Qin Shi Huangdi was the first king of Qin dynasty. He passed a theory for the educated people of the country and he stated that the entire country has to follow the same language version. However, this theory was opposed by many of the Chinese philosophers and they started doing protests against it. To stop this opposition protest, the king had burned numbers of Chinese books and after that he also passed the order of sending the protestors into the prison or to hire them as a mason to construct the Great Wall of China. During the Qin Dynasty, the country was divided into 34 commanderies or areas. This ruling party was quite popular for its cruel and pretty harsh punishment and also for the heavy tax burden imposed on the labors and also the labors causing much resentment. Xiang Yu was the last emperor of the dynasty who was killed in the civil war and got succeeded by Liu Bang.
Achievements– Construction of roads and irrigation canals. Although, the Great Wall of China was already in existence before this dynasty but it was only Qin emperors who completed the construction work of this landmark of China.
This dynasty is believed and reckoned to be the best dynasty in the civilization which introduced the chain pump and the watermill. Chin pump was the major innovation in China as it helped in the development of the country by increasing the level of farming. Gaozi was the first emperor of the dynasty who abolished many of the harsh punishments and also kept some of the policies started by their predecessors and adopted the special Confucian policies. They also started the provision of academic policies like they initiated the policy of taking exams and then hiring the candidates on the basis of their academic results. They also followed the tradition of imposing heavy taxes on the distrusted merchants. Finally in 168 AD, this dynasty came to an end.
Achievements of Han Dynasty– Its major achievement was the development in the agriculture sector, Manufacturing of iron, salt, and alcohol. The era was also known for the highest export of silk and in return the trading country used to offer China with glass, gems, and wines to the country. Ship Rudder was the major attraction of the country in the first century AD. Han dynasty was also popular for bringing the changes in the written mode of documents as before this dynasty writings used to be done on bamboo or silk and Han introduced paper to make the official documents safe and secure for a long time. Feng Shui crafts were also the major attraction of this period.
After Han Dynasty, many dynasties came in the existence and they all brought some other development in the technologies and other fields like Yuan dynasty, Ming Dynasty, Qing dynasty, etc.
Due to the cruel and harsh orders of the emperor, Chinese decided to protest against the rule in the 20th century. Sun-Yat-Sen was the leader of this revolution and in this revolution they demanded the three major principles of this revolution- socialism, nationalism, and democracy. In the year 1905, Sun formed an alliance of revolutionaries and later they decided to start the revolution in 1911 but due to an accidentally set off bomb incident, the government became alert of the revolution and so the revolutionaries started the revolt at the same time. This revolution really became fruitful for the country’s development and brought the required changes in the country.