Key Terms Ancient China
Katie Ward, Teacher
Terms in this set (46)
Huang He (Yellow River)
It flows across China for more than 2900 miles; it gets its name from the yellow soil it carries from Mongolia to the Pacific Ocean; like other rivers, Huang He flooded and it drowned people but it also left good rich soil.
Chiang Jiang (Yangtze River)
The Chiang Jiang river flows 3400 miles east across central china where it empties into the Yellow Sea; like the Huang He valley the Chiang Jiang Valley also has rich soil for farming.
China's first rulers were probably part of the Xia dynasty which is one of the eaerliest dynasty's. Little is known about the Xia dynasty.
The Shang Dynasty king ruled from 1750 BC to 1045 BC. The Shang kings ruled over most of the Huang He Valled. Shang kings ordered war lords to watch over the kingdom's territory.
first chinese capitol
Military leaders who command their own army; Shang kings chose warlords to govern the kingdom's territories. A warlord's army was not as big as a king's army. The king controlled even larger armies who defended the kingdom's borders. The king's armies helped him stay in power. Warlords were part of the upper class known as aristocrats.
noble whose wealth came from land ownership; they gave passed their land and power from one family to the next. That meant when an aristocrat died, his son or another relative would take over.
In ancient China, they were pieces of bone or turtle shell used by Shang priests to tell the future. They would write a question addressed to either one of the gods, or an ancestor on the bone, then heat it until it cracked. They believed that by studying the pattern of cracks, one could learn the answer to the question. Oracle bones are the oldest example of Chinese writing.
Reasons for the weakness of the Shang Dynasty
During the rule of the Shang, there were very rich people and very poor people. Because they were so rich, the kings lived very well, but they treated poor people very cruelly. As a result, they lost the support of the people in their kingdom. In 1045 BC, an aristocrat, WU WANG led a rebellion agianst the Shang and began a new dynasty called the ZHOU DYNASTY.
Ruled for 800 years, he longest lasting Chinese dynasty, during which the use of iron was introduced.
Made up of appointed officials who are responsible for different areas of government. These officials were under the king.
Mandate of Heaven
According to Zhou rulers, a heavenly law gave the Zhou king the power to rule. This was a mandate or formal order. According to this mandate, the king was chosen by heavenly order because of his talent and virtue and would rule the people with goodness and wisdom. This mandate worked in two ways: 1) The people expected the king to rule accoridng to the proper "Way" called the DAO and he was to keep the gods happy. An earthquake or other natural disaster was a sign that the king had failed in his duty. 2) It gave the people and the king important rights, for instance, people had the right to overthrow an evil ruler.
Accomplishments of Zhou Dynasty (3)
1) developed irrigation and flood control systems- farmers grew more crops b/c of this;
2) Improvement in farming tools helped farmers produce more crops\
3) Chinese used iron plows which meant they could plow more and produce more food.
4) Trade and manufacturing grew-- an important trade item was silk.
"Era of the Warring States"
Over time the local rulers of the Zhou territories became powerful and stopped obeying the kings-- they wanted to do their own thing and set up their own states. Fighting broke out in 403 BC and they battled for almost 200 years.
Crossbow, saddle and stirrup
Instead of nobles using chariots, the armies were on foot. Peasants were forced to serve in the army by laws that were passed just to get them to fight. The armies fought with swords, spears and crossbows. A crossbow uses a crank to pull the string and shoots arrows with great force. Then the saddle and stirrup was invented which allowed soldiers to ride on horses AND use spears and crossbows to fight while riding.
A warring state used large calvary force to defeat the other states and set up a new dynasty.
Daoism is another Chinese philosophy that wants a peaceful society and is based on the teachings of Laozi. People should give up worldly desires in favor of nature and the DAO; teaches the importance of nature and encourages people to treat nature with respect and reverence. (opposite of Confuscianism because confucius taught that people should work hard to improve the world; Daoism called on people to give up their concerns about the world).
He used harsh methods to unify and defend China and declared himself "The First Emperor".
Reunited China in 221 BC; he was one of the warlords; 2) he conquered other warlords; 3) he took over their land; 4) had everyone who opposed him punished or killed and books opposing his views were burned in public; 5) he required peasants to work on his many building projects & hundreds of people died; 6) he created one kind of money (currency); 7) outlawed Confucianism and Daoism-- burned their books and burned the philosophers alive.
1) built a netword of roads in China; 2) built the Grand Canals (connected the Huang He and Chiang Jiang); 3) built the Great Wall of China to protect against the nomadic invaders from the north west; 4) standardized (everyone spoke the same) chinese writing but not language; 5) standardized (everybody used the same) weights, measures and coins; 6) built a spectacular tomb guarded by thousands of terra-cotta (discovered in 1974 AND located in Xian)
The Grand Canal
Connected the Chang Jiang in central China to what is today the city of Guangzhou in southern China. He used the canal to ship supplies to his troops in far-off territories.
Nomadis who lived near the border of China which was called Gobi. Masters of fighting on horseback. They often attacked Chinese farms and villages.
The Great Wall of China
Several Chinese rulers in the north built walls to keep out the Xiongnu. Qin Shihuangdi forced farmers to leave their fields and work on connecting and strengthening the walls. Built with stone, sand and piled rubble.
Liu Bang/Han Gaozu
"Martial Emperor of Han"; he ruled from 141 BC to 87 BC; made people take difficult tests to get a job in the government which later became the civil service examinations and the person with the highest grade got the job (only one of every 5 person passed the tests because only the rich could study for the exam)
civil service examinations
Tests a person takes when they want a job - the person with the highest score gets the job, Tests in ancient China made by Wudi. They determined whether one was capable of doing a certain job. Students preparing for these tests learned law, history and the teachings of Confucius. After many years of schooling, the students took the exams.
SOMEONE WHO WOULD PAY RENT TO A LORD TO FARM PART OF THE LORD'S LAND
inventions in the Han Dynasty
1) Millers used newly invented waterwheels to grind more grain, and miners used new iron drill bits to mine more salt.
2) Ironworkers invented steel
3) Paper was used to record information
4) Medicine improved and food prevented disease and herbs were used to cure illnesses.
6) the rudder was a new way to move sails of ships.
Treatment of pain or disease by inserting the tips of needles at specific points on the skin
A general ordered by Emperor Han Wudi to explore areas west of China to find allies for China against its enemies, especially for Xiongnu. He was gone for 13 yeas but found no allies but did find the Roman Empire and Kazakhstan.
A large network of trade routes stretching 4000 miles from western China to sothwest Asia and was difficult and dangerous. Merchants had to pay taxes to many kingdoms so they carried the EXPENSIVE goods east and west including silk, spices, tea and porcelain.
The Han capital; was attacked in 190 AD by a rebel army
Founded the Han dynasty in 202 BC; was once a peasant and became a military leader and defeated his rivals; he declared himself Han Gaozu-- "Exalted Emperor of Han." threw out the harsh policies of the Qin dynasty but continued to use censors and also divided the empire into provinces and counties.
Meaning of Qin Shihuangdi
The First Qin Emperor
Qin Shihuandi based his rule on this philosophy
LEGALISM-- had everyone who opposed him punished or killed; books opposing his views were publicly burned.
Government officials appointed by Qin Shihuandi to make sure government officials did their jobs.
Three ways that Qin Shihuangdi unified China
1) He created one currency or type of money to be used throughout the empire.
2) He ordered the building of roads and a huge canal.
3) He forced farmers to leave their fields and work on connecting and strengthening the walls built to keep out the Xiongnu, later to be called the Great Wall of China.
Masters at fighting on horse back; often attacked Chinese villages and farms.
Many people in China hated Qin Shihuangdi. Explain.
1) Aristocrats hated him because he reduced their power.
2) Scholars hated him because he made them burn their writings if they opposed him.
3) Farmers hated him because he forced them to leave their farms and build roads and the Great Wall of China.
Founded the Han dynasty and called himself Han Gaozu which means "Exalted Emperor of Han".
Under what ruler did Han Dynasty reach its peak?
Han Wudi which means "Martial Emperor of Han"
Civil service exam favored the rich. Explain.
The Civil Service exam favored the rich because only wealthy familes could afford to educate their sons for the difficult exams.
Inventions created in China during the Han Dynasty.
1) water wheels to grind more grain (used by millers)
2) miners used new iron drill bits to mine more salt.
3) Ironworkers invented steel
4) Paper to record informaton
Three advancements in medicine made by Chinese doctors during the Han Dynasty.
1) Food prevents disease
2) Herbs to cure illness
3) acupuncture eased pain by sticking needles in skin
Advancement made by Chinese in sailing during the Han Dynasty.
The rudder and a new way to move the sails of ships. These changes allowed ships to sail into the wind for the first time. As a result, China established trade as far away as India and the Mediterranean Sea.
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