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Huang He River

river with deadly floods in Northern China. It carries loess and is often called Yellow River.

Himalaya Mountains

mountain range that divides China from India

Yellow Sea

sea at the mouth of the the Yellow River (Huang He)


Country on China's northern border.

Gobi Desert

one of the worlds largest deserts, covers part of China and present-day Mongolia

Silk Road

an ancient trade route between China and the Mediterranean (4,000 miles)


philosopher who believed that social order, harmony and good government could be organized around 5 basic relationships


founder of Daoism


founder of Legalism

Shi Huangdi

founder of the Qin dynasty and China's first emperor

Filial piety

respect shown by children for their parents and elders

Civil service exam

In China, it was an exam based on Confucian teachings that was used to select people for various government service jobs in the bureaucracy.


beautiful handwriting created with the 4 treasures (paper, brush, ink, and ink stone)

Mandate of Heaven

In chinese history, the belief the rulers had the gods approval to rule


Chinese philosophy developed by Hanfeizi; taught that humans are naturally evil and therefore need to be ruled by harsh laws


Chinese philosophy based on the teachings of Laozi; taught that people should turn to nature


ideas of Confucius, emphasizing such values as family, tradition, and mutual respect

Great Wall

China built this as a barrier to invaders from the North.

Oracle bones

animal bones carved with written characters which were used for telling the future


local military rulers


treatment of pain or disease by inserting the tips of needles at specific points on the skin

Dynastic cycle

rise and fall of Chinese dynasties according to the Mandate of Heaven

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