Ancient Chinese Dynasties

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by EmBell108
Last updated 6 years ago

Social Studies
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Ancient Chinese Dynasties

Ancient Chinese Dynasties

Their social structure was grouped into six main categories. At the top were kings and priests, who ruled the land, and then Nobles who would sometimes help them. After Nobles, were artisans and traders, who were essential for the economy. Unlike royals and nobles, they didn't live quite as luxuriously, although they did fare much better than farmers. Next down the line are farmers and slaves. Farmers rent their land from the king, and give most of the crops back to the ruler. They therefore lived very poorly by the basic necessities. Slaves are at the bottom, and were mostly prisoners of war

They believed very strongly in worshipping their ancestors. They thought that their relatives had the power to help or harm them, so they tried their best to please them. This is why their graves are so elaborately filled with treasures and servant sacrifices. To contact their relatives and get advice, a holy man would ask the question, and then press a heated rod up to a turtle shell or animal bone. They would then interpret the crack marks, and write their answers on Oracle Bones


Social Classes

Shang Dynasty The Shang Dynasty was one of the more successful dynasties of ancient China. This dynasty started in 1700 B.C.E, in the Huang He valley. It had a weak central government, but still managed to hang on for a long time, because of its great army. In the center of the dynasty was the king's palace, and then houses surrounded it. The houses slowly got less and less luxurious as they got further away from the palace.  It had a weak central government, but still managed to hang on for a long time, because of its great army. After about five hundred years, however, at around 1122 B.C.E, they finally were conquered. It is said that the king during that time spent much more money than he should have, and the years of constant fighting had worn on the army. When the Zhou came to conquer them, it is said the king "ran from the battlefield, put on all his jewelry, and threw himself into the flames of a fire."

Shang Dynasty

Zhou Dynasty

The Zhou conquered and took over China after the Shang. They ruled with fuedalism, where one king would rule, but would assign Nobles to protect other parts of the land. However, this didn't work out for them when the Nobles decided they all wanted more of the power and riches they had been given. This led to the Time of the Warring states, where all of the seperate Noble fought for over 500 years


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