CH. 6 East Asia and the Spread of Buddhism

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Parker 9th World History

Age of Division

The period after the fall of the Han Dynasty, during which time China was divided into the Northern and Southern Dynasties.

Chan

A school of Buddhism (known in Japan as Zen) that rejected the authority of the sutras and claimed the superiority of mind-to-mind transmission of Buddhist truths.

Confucian classics

The canonical scriptures—ancient Confucian texts recovered during the Han Dynasty.

eunuchs

Castrated males who played an important role as palace servants.

Grand Canal

A canal, built during the Sui Dynasty, that connected the Yellow and Yangzi Rivers.

Great Wall

A rammed-earth fortification built along the northern border of China during the reign of the First Emperor.

lacquer

Made from the sap of the lac tree, it was often used to make cups and dishes.

Nara

Japan's first true city; it was established in 710 north of modern Osaka.

Pure Land

A school of Buddhism that taught that by paying homage to the Buddha Amitabha and his chief helper, one could achieve rebirth in Amitabha's paradise.

Records of the Grand Historian

A comprehensive history of China written by Sima Qian.

regent

A temporary ruler appointed to rule in the place of a child emperor.

Shinto

The "Way of the Gods"; it was the native religion espoused by the Yamato rulers.

Silk Road

The trade routes across Central Asia through which Chinese silk and other items were traded.

tributary system

A system used during the Han Dynasty to regulate contact with foreign powers. States and tribes beyond its borders sent envoys bearing gifts and received gifts in return.

Shihuangdi

First Grand Emperor, a Chinese emperor who founded the Qin dynasty and unified China with a standardized system of writing and money.

Li Si

advisor to Shi Huangdi, Shihuangdi's adviser-forges Shihaungdi's will after he dies and fears rebellion so he carries the dead body around and pretends that he is alive, Developing earlier Legalist thinking, who insisted that the will of the ruler was supreme, and that is was necessary to impose discipline and obedience on the subjects through the rigid applications of reward and punishments?

Sima Qian

chinese scholar,astronomer,and historian; wrote the most important history of ancient china

Emperor Wu

Han emperor who chose advisors based on merit, Confucian-scholar system very important, "the martial emperor", sent troops to defeat Huns (Xiongnu) gained control of Silk Road, Han territory vastly expanded under Wu.

Empress Wu

First and only woman emporer of china powerful and cruel. Grandmother of Xuanzong and wife of Gaozong. After Gaozong's death she took over as Empress of China.

Yang Guifei

Full Figured love of Xuanzong. Xuanzong allowed Yang to put her family and friends in positions power in Tang government. Yang put general An Lushan into power and he started a rebellion that would doom the Tang dynasty.

The Qin Unification (256-206 B.C.E.)

In 221 B.C.E., the Chinese empire was established under the Qin dynasty, which lasted only until 206 B.C.E.

The Han Dynasty (206 B.C.E.-220 C.E.)

The Han dynasty established a unified bureaucratic form of government backed up by a strong military that gained Chinese overlordship in areas of nomad invaders. Under the Han, a major expansion of territory took place.

Inner Asia and the Silk Road

China's products like silk and laquerware created demands for Chinese goods as far away as Rome. Emperor Wu established control over the trade routes across Central Asia, called the Silk Road. The tributary system was developed to regulate contact with foreign powers.

Han Intellectual and Cultural Life

A rediscovery of Confucianism, art, literature, and history writing were all components of a strong cultural component in the Han dynasty.

Economy and Society in Han China

City-dwellers enjoyed most of the prosperity of Han China. The bulk of the population consisted of peasants living in villages. Society was based on patrilineal lines. To fight peasant poverty, the government kept taxes low.

China and Rome

While Rome was building a huge empire, the Qin and Han rulers in China built an empire on a similar scale. Like the Roman Empire, it was put together through force of arms and held in place by sophisticated centralized administrative machinery.

The Fall of the Han and the Age of Division

Weaknesses in the Han dynastic system led to the decline of the empire and its final collapse in 220 c.e. During the subsequent Age of Division, China was split between north and south, ruled by non-Chinese and Chinese dynasties respectively.

The Spread of Buddhism Out of India

During this period of political unrest, Buddhism spread beyond its home in India and came to provide a common set of ideas and visual images for the entire region, but it coexisted with other religions, including Hinduism in India, Daoism in China, and Shinto in Japan. The forms of Buddhism that entered China, Japan, and Korea were called Mahayana, which means "Great Vehicle," thus refers to its inclusive nature. Buddhism was popular among rulers because it offered a source of magical power and a political tool to unite Chinese and non-Chinese. To the masses, Buddhism's democratic nature was attractive. Chinese was widely used as an international language outside China and its empire.

The Chinese Empire Re-created

Sui (581-618) and Tang (618-907)

The Tang Dynasty (618-907)

An exhausted Sui dynasty fell to Li Yuan, founder of the Tang dynasty. Tang emperors introduced innovative administrative reforms. They also successfully quelled rebellions and repulsed invasions until losing control of provinces to military governors.

Tang Culture

The Tang presided over an extraordinary cultural flowering and oversaw the full penetration of Buddhism into Chinese life, developing the Pure Land and Chan schools of Buddhism. This period was also the great age of Chinese poetry.

The East Asian Cultural Sphere

Increased communication stimulated state formation in Central Asia (which is the vast area between the ancient civilizations of Persia, India, and China), Tibet, Korea, Manchuria, and Japan. Korea, Japan, and Vietnam all adopted Chinese institutions, although by 800 c.e., each of these regions was on its way to having a distinct political and cultural identity.

Vietnam

The Han conquered Nam Viet in 111 B.C.E. Chinese innovations were integrated into the culture, but the local elite did not accept Chinese political domination. Yet, the Tang period saw continued Chinese control over northern Vietnam.

Korea

The Han dynasty took control of Choson in 108 B.C.E., thereby establishing a long-term Chinese influence in the region. Buddhism was introduced in 372.

Japan

Japan's early development was tied closely to Korea. In the sixth century, Chinese-style bureaucratic practices were adopted. The Yamato rulers espoused the native religion of Shinto, but beginning in the sixth century Buddhism was encouraged.

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