Chinese History Early dynasties to 770BCE Spring and Autumn Period 770-476BCE Warring States Period 476-221BCE Qin dynasty 221-207BCE Han dynasty 206BCE-220CE Period of disunity 220-581 Sui dynasty 581-618 Tang dynasty 618-907 Five dynasties and Ten kingdoms 907-960 Song dynasty 960-1279 Yuan/Mongol dynasty 1271-1368 Ming dynasty 1368-1644 Qing/Manchu dynasty 1644-1911 Republic of China 1912-1949 Peoples Republic of China 1949-present

Chinese History lì shǐ

China motif
China's Ancient Script

China's Ancient Script

Language

The discovery of a huge number of 'oracle bones' has added greatly to the knowledge of the origins of China's written script. It pushes back the written language to at least 3,500 years ago. Careful study of the inscriptions is still revealing information about life in Shang dynasty times.
Warring States

Warring States

History

The second part of the Zhou dynasty was known for incessant warfare between kingdoms. It was time of great importance to China as the philosophical traditions were developed that went on to dominate the next two thousand years. The first unification of China as a large nation state then followed.
Han Dynasty

Han Dynasty

History

After the trauma of the Qin dynasty it was the succeeding Han dynasty that established China as a stable nation. Many Imperial institutions inaugurated at this time lasted for the next two thousand years. Together with the Tang and Ming it is considered one of the great periods of Chinese history.

Most countries can look back to a few hundred years of continuous recorded history; China looks back to thousands of years. From earliest times an accurate account of events has been treasured by the Chinese, this is embodied in the character shǐhistory’ which also has the meaning ‘impartial’. Chinese people know their heritage well and have a long tradition of revering their ancestors. A good knowledge of Chinese history is essential to understanding and relating to its people.

We include pages on all the main dynasties as well as significant events in Chinese history, up to the foundation of the Republic in 1912, including the Taiping Rebellion; coming of railways; the Imperial system; and the Opium Wars. We will continue to add further topics.

The Repblic of China 1912-1949

The Repblic of China 1912-1949

Modern History

The years 1912-49 marked the difficult transition from centuries of Imperial dynastic rule to that of a Republic. Sun Yatsen's dream of a democratic Republic was never achieved amidst the turmoil of the Japanese Occupation and then the Civil War with the Communists.

Click on the time chart on the left to go to a particular time period. Hover the mouse over a dynasty to pop-up a list of key dates during each dynasty and then click on it to go to a more detailed page. You can also navigate between dynasties by clicking on the time bar at the top of each dynasty page.


monument, Beijing, Tiananmen Square
Monument on West side of Tiananmen Square between Mao Mausoleum and Monument to the Heroes of the People. September 2013. Image by RThiele available under a Creative Commons license .
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Citation information: Chinasage, 'China's long Imperial history', last updated 23 Nov 2016, Web, http://www.chinasage.info/history.htm.

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