Early China

Geography, Society, interesting Facts.


  • Southwest china

  • Surrounded by Himalayas and Tian Shan, mountains blocked out people

  • Rainforest divided China for Asia

  • Traded with with neighboring people

  • Nomadic invaders

  • Chinese goods reached the middle east and beyond

  • Advanced civilization
  • The Yellow River is to the north
  • The Gobi Desert and the Taklamakan Desert, borders that kept Chinese isolated

Ancient China. (n.d.). Retrieved December 15, 2015, from http://www.ducksters.com/history/china/geography_of_ancient_china.php

World history book page 92

Shang Dynasty

  • 18-16th century B.C.E
  • Bronze age
  • The people of the Shang dynasty lived off of the land, and settled permanently on farms instead of wandering as nomads.
  • Developed complex forms of irrigation and flood control
  • Created a social pyramid, with the king at the top, followed by the military nobility, priests, merchants, and farmers.
  • Polytheistic
  • Shang Chou was a cruel man known for his methods of torture
  • Dynasty had been weakened by repeated battles with nomads and rivaling tribes
  • Shang Chou was ousted by the rebel leader Wu-wang

Zhou Dynasty

  • 1122 B.C. 256 B.C
  • To justify rebellion against Shang they created the "Mandate of Heaven"
  • Rewarded supporters by granting them control over different regions
  • Zhou ruled for over 850 years
  • During Zhou dynasty economy grew
  • Zhou ended because it was too weak to control feudal lords who ignored the emperor

Early China. (n.d.). Retrieved December 21, 2015, from http://www.shsu.edu/~his_ncp/China1.html

Shang Dynasty — China's First Recorded History. (n.d.). Retrieved December 21, 2015, from http://www.ushistory.org/civ/9b.asp

World History Book Page 93

Everyday Life in Ancient China

  • In a family, the father has complete authority over children and wife (patriarchal)
  • Weddings were arranged
  • Girls valued much less than boys→ Many baby girls drowned or left to die
  • Only boys allowed to go to school→ Most did not to work in the fields
  • Upper class were called mandarins→ Had to pass an exam to qualify
  • Rice farming
  • Diet included grains (rice, wheat, millet), meat (duck, pork, chicken, goose, pheasant, dog), vegetables, soups, and fish. They drank wine and tea.
  • Weapons and war tools included chariots, cavalry, the crossbow, and rockets, grenades, and bombs
  • Rich people lived in houses made of wood → roofs typically tile and curved in shape
  • Poorer people lived in houses of only about 2 rooms → roofs thatched and furniture basic (such as wooden benches)

Resource(s): http://www.localhistories.org/chineselife.html

Lambert, Tim. "DAILY LIFE IN ANCIENT CHINA." Life in Ancient China. Local Histories, n.d. Web. 18 Dec. 2015.


  • Paper

  • Silk

  • Wheelbarrow

  • Rubber

  • Gunpowder

    • Used often in war

  • Fireworks

    • First used for shows but later used to frighten enemies

  • The Silk Road

    • Used for trading goods such as gold, silk, ivory, weapons...etc

  • Agriculture

  • Irrigation

  • Carved jade and turtle shells for divination

  • Acupuncture

  • Astronomy

  • Magnetism

  • Arithmetic

  • Fractions

  • Geometry

Resource(s): World History Textbook

Ellis, Elisabeth Gaynor., Anthony Esler, and Burton F. Beers. Prentice Hall World History. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2007. 92-100. Print.

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