Song Dynasty (Years: 420 - 479)

By Miss Rogers

Religion/Culture/Social Life

In the Song Dynasty, religions such as Buddhism, Taoism, Daoism, and Confucianism combined with Buddhism were encouraged. Poems, anecdotes, landscape paintings (with more nature than people); drawings with least lines as possible which showed more important things than details, sculptures, pots and vases, opers, and paper cutting was important during the song dynasty. Speficic pieces were the Auspicious Dragon", the "Branch of Bamboo", Two Jays and a Hare", and "Traveling Amid Streams and Mountains". Typically in the Song dynasty the children lived with their parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. In the Song Dynasty the familyt was more important than friends. Boys and girls didn't go to school but worked on the farms, picking weeds, and planing seeds. Even rich girls didn't go to school but rich boys did. When in school the boys worked very hard because of the state examinations. If the boy passed the examinations he could get political power. When girls grew up, they got married and lived in their husbands house, and always obeyed their mother in law. Many Chinese were slaves (they worked in fields, they were servants to the rich.) The emperor owned hundreds of slaves (They worked for the government, collecting taxes, and building roads. Some slaves were born as slaves and sold to pay off debts). The wealthy and elite wore silken robes. The poor wore hemp, and ramie. The cotton they used was late song cotton.
This is a Buddha statue that the song used to worship encouraging Buddhism.


Emperor Taizu, the first ruler of theSong dynasty, unified China by conquering other states and provinces, ending the "Five Dunasties and Ten Kingdoms" period. The Song court also maintained relations with Chola Indian, Fatmid Egypt, Srivijayan Indonesia, the Kara-Khanid Khnate of Central Asia and other countries for trade and allies.

The Song were horrible at military defenses, so they had a hard time keeping barbarians and tribes away. Also, the last ruler, Song; Weiwang, died when he was only 8 years old from drowning at sea. Thus, ending the reign of the Song Dynasty.

Emperor Tai Zu of the Song Dynasty, who unified China by conquering other coutries.


The Song dunasty had a Black Market that contributed to trade. They used the Rainbow Bridge for trading. They also taxed imported goods (Of 10 to 40 percent,) The Song government was the only one that could purchase and sell the imported goods. All of the goods were only sold to the government. Private sales during the Song dynasty was illegal. All local merchants had to have issued foreign trade permits. Some important products in the Song dynasty are paper money, cattle, silk, hemp, ramie, pearls, ivory, rhino horn, frankincence, eaglewood, agate, coral, hawl's bill, turtle shells, gardenia, rose, herbal medicine, cottong cloth, cotton yarn, ginseng, silver, copper, and quicksilver. Occupations grew during the Song dynasty. Traders, farmers, miners, entrepreneurs, small business owners, small kiln/pottery shop owners, inn keepers, petty diviners, drug sellers, cloth traders, and brokers were some jobs that a typical person that lived in the Song dynasty would have. The Song dynasty traded with the east coast of Africa, the west, India, Turkestan, Uzbekistan, the Persian empire and other countries. The dynasties they traded with were Chola, India; Fatimid, Egypt; Srivijayan, Indonesia; and Kara-Khanid khanate of Central Asia.
A rhino horn

Inventions/Technology, Science and Architecture

The Song Dynasty made many things in their time as the rulers of China. They invented cannons, gunpowder, paper money, the "Pont-To-The-South Fish Compass", fireworks, and the solar quadrant/compass. They also made the first restaurants, multipl stage rockets, tea, noodles, movable type (writing/printing), and paper made from worn fishnet, bark and cloth. The Song Dynasty also made printing, junk ships, brick buildings, quality porcelain baked in kilns, comprehensive maps of the Sog area, pontoon buildings, dykes, the famous "Rainbow Bridge", and the earliest record of "Pascal's Triangle", bracket arm clusters, upturned roof corners, pyramidal tomb structures, and water pount locks. A great philosopher, Su Song, even created the first celestial star chart(s).

In the Song Dynasty, they build temples to worship Buddha, the Lingziao Pagoda of Shengding in Heibei, built in 1045. Finally, the most famous structure ever built in the Song Dynasty, the "Rainbow Bridge". It was the most used road for trading.

This is a cannon that uses gunpowder, the first one ever created by the Song Dynasty. It was used in war and to display fireworks during that time.
This is a "Point-To-The-South Fish Compass". it consists of a floating fish that always points to the South to guide travelers to the opposite direction.
This is quality porcelain baked from the kilns the Song Dynasty back then.