China’s Flourishing Civilization
Gobi Desert: one of the driest in the world enter and you shall never return! – – Plains: Only about 12% of China’s land is plains; most of that is in the eastern part of China.
China’s Topographical Features Tibetan Plateau – Himalayas: 43% of China’s land is mountainous! Tibetan Plateau: very isolated region even today! Impact of China’s Geography How would isolation help a country? What other great ancient civilizations were isolated? Impact of China’s Geography 1. Long distances and physical barriers isolated China, blocking cultural diffusion 2. Protecting China from invasion 3. Isolation contributed to the Chinese belief that China was the center of the earth and the only civilization. Timeline of China’s Earliest Dynasties The Mystery Dynasty: Xia For many years, the Xia (shee-uh) Dynasty was thought to be a part of a myth that the Chinese tell as part of their history.The Xia Dynasty was in oral histories, but no archaeological evidence was found of it until 1959. Xia Dynasty (2205-1806 B.
C. ) Evidence finally uncovered… • Despite this new archaeological evidence of the Xia, they are not universally accepted as a true dynasty. Xia Dynasty (2205-1806 B. C. ) Evidence finally uncovered… • The founding of the Xia dynasty (2200-1766 BCE), according to Chinese tradition, reveals the value the Chinese have put on leadership… • Xia Yu, the founder of the Xia dynasty, was selected as the heir to the throne because he was able to control the Great Flood that had afflicted the Chinese for several years.Reading: Yu the Great Selected By Achievement… • Xia Yu was selected as the heir to the throne because he was able to control the Great Flood that had afflicted the Chinese for several years. • …Even though he was not the son of the Emperor and even though his own father had been executed because he could not control the flood.
Daily Life 1. The Xia were agrarian people 2. The ruling families used elaborate and dramatic rituals to confirm their power to govern. 3. The rulers often acted as shamans, communicating with spirits for help and guidance.Was He the Last Emperor??? • Xia Jie was the last emperor of the Xia Dynasty. As a hedonist ; a notorious tyrant, the people under his reign were driven into great disaster.
• He ordered 3,000 to their deaths by demanding they jump into a lake of wine, just for entertainment! Xia Dynasty Banished! At last, a fuedal lord named Shang Tang led the people against this tyrant and banished him from the capital. Shang Tang Chinese civilization took shape under the… Shang Dynasty 1650 B. C. –1027 B. C. What is needed to have a civilization? Oracle Inscriptions Writing had begun…China’s Oldest Dynasties! Is there something missing from that list? Qin Dynasty • Qin Dynasty Reading Shi Huangdi wiped out the Zhou and conquered northern China uniting under central government Defeats all the feudal lords and creates an empire! • Qin Dynasty Qin Dynasty Reading The First Emperor, Qin Shihuangdi, standardized society: weights and measures, coins, writing, and law Public Works Projects Dominated the Qin Dynasty Many public works projects were also undertaken: 1. A Great Wall was built in the north, to protect against invasions.
2.Roads and irrigation canals were built throughout the country. 3. Developed farmlands the size of the state of Connecticut enough to feed the people and a large army. Strict Social Classes unless… The lower class males could raise their status by the number of heads they cut off for the emperor! Though his methods were brutal, Shi Huangdi ushered in China’s classical age. This period is called a classical civilization because it set patterns in government, philosophy, religion, science, and the arts that served as the framework for later cultures.How Did Shi Huangdi Unite China?