Shang Dynasty

by: S Gillen

What is the Shang Dynasty?

The Shang dynasty had a large population of 13 million people. They ruled from 1766 B.C. To 1046 B.C. There were 33 kings in the 600 years of the Shang dynasty. The Shang kings created a 5 layer social pyramid like the Ancient Indians. There were the kings at the top of the pyramid, military nobles on the second level, priests on the next level, merchants on the next, and farmers on the bottom. They settled in permanent places instead of being nomadic. They thought the success of the crops and the health of the people were based on the happiness of the dead ancestors.

Where was the Shang Dynasty?

The Shang Dynasty ruled near the yellow river (which is also known as the Huang He River.) They ruled the central portion of the North China Plain. The capital was based in Yin (present day Anyang City). The last known pieces of the Shang Dynasty were dug up in the 1920’s and 1930’s. There were 1,200 artifacts found in the ruins of Yin in that last dig for artifacts in the 1920’s. One of the few undisturbed tombs were of the legendary Fuhao, wife of Wu-ting. Her tomb contained 468 bronze works and 775 pieces of jade. There were 150,000 oracle bones were found in Shang Dynasty ruins. Cheng Tang (the first Shang king) was known to have established the first capital in a town called Shang
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Ruins of Shang Dynasty

This is a picture of the ruins of palace areas. This is in the city of Zhengzhou of Henan Province.

Who was part of the Shang Dynasty?

There were 13 million people in the Shang Dynasty. The folk religion of Shang is polytheistic which means that they worshipped many different gods. According to the legend, the Shang dynasty was founded sometime around 1700 B.C. by Cheng Tang after he overthrew the evil king of the Legendary Xia. The Shang worshipped the “Shang Di,” who was the supreme god that ruled over the lesser gods of the sun, the moon, the wind, the rain, and other natural forces and places. They sacrificed animals to royal ancestors and to various nature gods. using sacrifices to ask the ancestors or gods for help and to feed the ancestors or gods to keep them strong. The kings communicated with their ancestors using oracle bones and made frequent sacrifices to them. The king or professional diviners hired by the king used oracle bones to make predictions about the future or to answer questions about the future.

When was the Shang Dynasty?

The Shang Dynasty was around for 600 years. The Shang Dynasty marked the middle of the China Bronze Age. Scholars cannot agree on the official dates of the earliest China dynasties. In 1500 B.C. the modern city of Zhengzhou was constructed. The last artifacts were dug up in the 1920’s and 1930’s The Shang Dynasty was ended in 1050 B.C. when conquerors from the State of Zhou invaded and overthrew the Shang.
3 mins SHANG DYNASTY EMERGING FROM MYTH