The Wuhuan were a Proto-Mongolic nomadic people who inhabited northern China, in what is now the provinces of Hebei, Shanxi, the municipality of Beijing and the autonomous region of Inner Mongolia. They were descended from the Donghu. After the Donghu were defeated by Modu Chanyu around 209 BC, the Xianbei and Wuhuan survived as the main remnants of the confederation; the Hou Hanshu says that “the language and culture of the Xianbei are the same as the Wuhuan”. Tadun of the Wuhuan was the ancestor of the proto-Mongolic Kumo Xi; the Weishu records that the Kumo Khitan spoke the same language. The Hou Hanshu records: The Wuhuan are skilled in mounted archery, they engage in hunting birds. They nomadise from place to place in search of water. Without permanent settlements they live in round yurts; the entrance of the yurt faces the sun. They eat drink kumiss, they make clothes from fine wool. Youthfulness and strength are held in esteem among them while weakness are not, they are valorous by nature. In anger they kill each other but nobody harms mothers, because the continuation of their progeny depends on their mothers.
Fathers and elder brothers on the other hand can create their own separate tribes, so the original tribe does not bear responsibility for them. Whoever is brave and able to deal with contentious cases of litigation are chosen to be elders; the office of elder is not hereditary. Each nomadic community has its own small commander. A community is composed of a hundred to a thousand yurts; when an elder makes a proclamation they carve markings on wood though they have no script, none of the tribes dare to violate it. In 209 BC, Modu Chanyu, founder of the Xiongnu empire, defeated the Donghu; the Wuhuan and Xianbei were remnants of the Donghu. The Xianbei, of the lateral Donghu line, resided to the north of the Wuhuan; the Wuhuan were of the direct Donghu line and got involved in many relations with the Chinese due to their more southern location. Until 121 BC, the Wuhuan was a tributary of the Xiongnu empire; the Hou Hanshu says: "From the time that Modu Shanyu crushed them the Wuhuan became weak. They were kept in constant subjugation to the Xiongnu and were forced to pay annual taxes of cow and sheep skins.
If anybody did not pay this tax his wife and children were taken from him." In 121 BC, the Han dynasty general Huo Qubing defeated the eastern wing of the Xiongnu. He settled the Wuhuan in five districts created on the northern Chinese border in order to make them observe the movements of the Xiongnu; this began the close relationship of the Wuhuan with the Han dynasty. The chieftains of the Wuhuan paid annual visits to the Han capital Chang'an and were given high rewards. During the reign of Zhaodi, the Wuhuan, who had become strong, looted the tombs of the Xiongnu emperors; the outraged Xiongnu defeated them. Fan Minyu was sent to aid the Wuhuan; the Xiongnu were out of his reach. Fan Minyu attacked the Wuhuan, defeated them and beheaded three of their kings. During the reign of Xuandi, the Wuhuan came to the northern Chinese border and submitted to the Han dynasty. In 49 AD, the Wuhuan elder of the Liaoxi district, came to the Han court with 922 other chieftains and "paid tribute" to Emperor Guangwu of Han with slaves, horses and tiger, leopard and sable skins.
They were active throughout the latter half of the Han Dynasty incorporated into the regular military forces of the Han armies. Unlike most major non-Chinese peoples on the frontiers of the Chinese empire, the Wuhuan were cooperative with the imperial court. Around the fall of the dynasty in the 190s AD, the Wuhuan joined in many of the rebellions and internal wars of the Chinese. In the 3rd century, the "Wuhuan of the three commanderies", the tribes closest to the Chinese, supported Yuan Shao, the major warlord north of the Yellow River. In 207, Cao Cao led a forced march deep into Wuhuan territory and decisively defeated them at the Battle of White Wolf Mountain. Many of the Wuhuan's powerful horsemen joined him and became known as the "greatest cavalry under heaven". Although various Wuhuan leaders led sporadic revolts throughout the 3rd century, by the 4th century they had been displaced by the Xianbei; the remaining Kumo Xi were absorbed by the Khitans in the 10th century. Battle of White Wolf Mountain Battle of Nanpi Hedan Qiuliju Tadun Qiuliju Louban Tadun Aohans Beidi Donghu people Khitan people Xianbei
Battle of Red Cliffs
The Battle of Red Cliffs, otherwise known as the Battle of Chibi, was a decisive battle fought at the end of the Han dynasty, about twelve years prior to the beginning of the Three Kingdoms period in Chinese history. It was fought in the winter of AD 208/9 between the allied forces of the southern warlords Sun Quan and Liu Bei and the numerically superior forces of the northern warlord Cao Cao. Liu Bei and Sun Quan frustrated Cao Cao's effort to conquer the land south of the Yangtze River and reunite the territory of the Eastern Han dynasty; the allied victory at Red Cliffs ensured the survival of Liu Bei and Sun Quan, gave them control of the Yangtze, provided a line of defence, the basis for the creation of the two southern states of Shu Han and Eastern Wu. The battle has been called the largest naval battle in history in terms of numbers involved. Descriptions of the battle differ and the location of the battle is fiercely debated. Although its precise location remains uncertain, the majority of academic conjectures place it on the south bank of the Yangtze River, southwest of present-day Wuhan and northeast of Baqiu.
By the early third century, the Han dynasty, which had ruled China for four centuries, was crumbling. Emperor Xian had been a political figurehead since 189, with no control over the actions of the various warlords controlling their respective territories. One of the most powerful warlords in China was Cao Cao, who, by 207, had unified northern China and retained total control of the North China Plain, he completed a successful campaign against the Wuhuan in the winter of the same year, thus securing his northern frontier. Upon his return in 208, he was appointed Chancellor, a position that granted him absolute authority over the entire imperial government. Shortly afterwards, in the autumn of 208, his army began a southern campaign; the Yangtze River in the area of Jing Province was key to the success of this strategy. If Cao Cao was to have any hope of reuniting the sundered Han empire, he had to achieve naval control of the middle Yangtze and command the strategic naval base at Jiangling as a means of access to the southern region.
Two warlords controlled the regions of the Yangtze that were key to Cao Cao's success: Liu Biao, the Governor of Jing Province, controlled the area west of the mouth of the Han River, Sun Quan, who controlled the river east of the Han and the southeastern territories abutting it. A third ally, Liu Bei, was living in refuge with Liu Biao at the garrison in Fancheng, having fled from the northeast to Jing Province following a failed plot to assassinate Cao Cao and restore power to the imperial dynasty; the initial stages of the campaign were an unqualified success for Cao Cao, as the command of Jing Province had been weakened and the Jing armies exhausted by conflict with Sun Quan to the south. Factions had arisen supporting either of Liu Biao's two sons in a struggle for succession; the younger son prevailed, Liu Biao's dispossessed eldest son, Liu Qi, departed to assume a commandery in Jiangxia. Liu Biao died of illness only a few weeks while Cao Cao was advancing from the north and, under these circumstances, Liu Biao's younger son and successor, Liu Cong surrendered.
Cao Cao thus secured the naval base at Jiangling. This forward base to harbour his ships; when Jing Province fell, Liu Bei fled south, accompanied by a refugee population of civilians and soldiers. This disorganised exodus was pursued by Cao Cao's elite cavalry, was surrounded and decisively beaten at the Battle of Changban. Liu Bei escaped and fled further east to Xiakou, where he liaised with Sun Quan's emissary Lu Su. At this point historical accounts are inconsistent. In either case, Liu Bei was joined by Liu Qi and levies from Jiangxia. Liu Bei's main advisor, Zhuge Liang, was sent to Chaisang to negotiate forming a mutual front against Cao Cao with Sun Quan. By the time Zhuge Liang arrived, Cao Cao had sent Sun Quan a letter boasting of commanding 800,000 men and hinting that he wanted Sun to surrender; the faction led by Sun Quan's Chief Clerk, Zhang Zhao, advocated surrender, citing Cao Cao's overwhelming numerical advantage. However, on separate occasions, Lu Su, Zhuge Liang, Sun Quan's chief commander, Zhou Yu, all presented arguments to persuade Sun Quan to agree to the alliance against the northerners.
Sun Quan decided upon war, chopping off a corner of his desk during an assembly and stating: "Anyone who still dares argue for surrender will be the same as this desk." He assigned Zhou Yu, Cheng Pu, Lu Su with 30,000 men to aid Liu Bei against Cao Cao. Although Cao Cao had boasted command of 800,000 men, Zhou Yu estimated Cao Cao's actual troop strength to be closer to 230,000. Furthermore, this total included 80,000 impressed troops from the armi
Zhang Liao, courtesy name Wenyuan, was a military general serving under the warlord Cao Cao in the late Eastern Han dynasty of China. He served in the state of Cao Wei, founded by Cao Cao's successor Cao Pi, in the early Three Kingdoms period before his death. A subordinate of other warlords such as Ding Yuan, Dong Zhuo and Lü Bu, Zhang Liao joined Cao Cao around 198 after Lü Bu's downfall at the Battle of Xiapi. Since he participated in many of Cao Cao's military campaigns, including those against Yuan Shao's heirs and the Wuhuan tribes from 201–207, he is best known for his pivotal role in the Battle of Xiaoyao Ford in 214–215, in which he defended Hefei from the forces of the warlord Sun Quan. Chen Shou, who wrote the third-century historical text Sanguozhi, named Zhang Liao as one of the Five Elite Generals of his time, alongside Yu Jin, Zhang He, Yue Jin and Xu Huang. Zhang Liao was from Mayi County, Yanmen Commandery, present-day Shuocheng District, Shanxi), he was a descendant of Nie Yi, but his family name had been changed from Nie to Zhang to avoid association with his disgraced ancestor.
When he was young, he served as a minor official in his home commandery. Towards the end of the Eastern Han dynasty, Ding Yuan, the Inspector of Bing Province, heard of Zhang Liao's combat skills and hired him as an assistant officer. Ding Yuan ordered Zhang Liao to lead troops from Bing Province to the imperial capital, Luoyang, to assist the General-in-Chief, He Jin, he Jin sent him on a mission to Hebei, where Zhang Liao managed to recruit over 1,000 men to serve in He Jin's army. When Zhang Liao returned to Luoyang, the warlord Dong Zhuo had seized control of Luoyang in the aftermath of He Jin's assassination, replaced He Jin as the de facto head of the Han central government. Zhang Liao and his 1,000 troops joined Dong Zhuo's army. In 192, after Lü Bu betrayed and killed Dong Zhuo, Zhang Liao served as one of his deputies and became a Cavalry Commandant. About a month after he killed Dong Zhuo, Lü Bu came under attack by Dong Zhuo's followers, who were led by Li Jue and Guo Si, they forced him out of the imperial capital, Chang ` an.
Zhang Liao accompanied Lü Bu as they headed east and wandered around central and northern China until mid 195, when the warlord Liu Bei offered Lü Bu shelter in Xu Province. In 196, Lü Bu betrayed his host and seized control of Xu Province, after which he appointed a 27-year-old Zhang Liao as the Chancellor of Lu State. In 198, the warlord Cao Cao, who controlled the Han central government and the figurehead Emperor Xian, defeated Lü Bu at the Battle of Xiapi and executed him. Zhang Liao became one of his subordinates, he received the peerage of a Secondary Marquis. He was promoted to Major-General for his contributions in battle. In early 201, after Cao Cao defeated his northern rival Yuan Shao at the Battle of Guandu, he first sent Zhang Liao to pacify the various counties in Lu State, ordered him and Xiahou Yuan to lead an army to attack a minor warlord Chang Xi in Donghai Commandery. Zhang Liao and Xiahou Yuan had besieged Chang Xi for months but were unable to defeat him and their supplies were running out, so they considered retreating.
Zhang Liao told Xiahou Yuan: "Over the past several days, whenever we attacked Chang Xi, I noticed he paid careful attention to me. He is running short of arrows. I suspect he is having doubts, therefore he isn't doing his best to resist us. Wouldn't it be better if I manage to persuade him to surrender?" He sent a message to Chang Xi and asked to speak to him. When Zhang Liao met Chang Xi, he told the latter. Convinced by Zhang Liao, Chang Xi agreed to surrender to Cao Cao. Zhang Liao went to Chang Xi's home alone and visited his family. Chang Xi was delighted and he followed Zhang Liao and Xiahou Yuan back to meet Cao Cao; when Cao Cao heard about how Zhang Liao persuaded Chang Xi to surrender, he scolded Zhang Liao: "This isn't what a great general should do." Zhang Liao replied: "I was certain that Chang Xi wouldn't dare to harm me because he knows that I am authorised by the imperial court and because he is influenced by the prestige of you, my lord." In 202, Zhang Liao accompanied Cao Cao to attack Yuan Shang at Liyang.
He was promoted to acting Central Resolute General for his contributions in battle. On, he followed Cao Cao to attack Yuan Shang at Ye but were unable to conquer the city so they retreated in mid 203. After Cao Cao returned to the imperial capital, Xu, he sent Zhang Liao and Yue Jin to lead an army to conquer Yin'an County and relocate its residents to the south of the Yellow River. In early 204, Zhang Liao followed Cao Cao to attack Yuan Shang at Ye again and they succeeded in capturing the city this time. Zhang Liao led troops to the Zhao State and Changshan State in Ji Province, where he persuaded the Heishan bandits and other opposing forces to surrender to Cao Cao. In 205, Zhang Liao accompanied Cao Cao to attack Yuan Tan at Nanpi County and they defeated Yuan Tan. After the battle, Zhang Liao led an army to the coastal regions and defeated bandit forces led by Liu Yi from Liaodong; when he returned to Ye after the campaign, Cao Cao came out of the city and wel
China the People's Republic of China, is a country in East Asia and the world's most populous country, with a population of around 1.404 billion. Covering 9,600,000 square kilometers, it is the third- or fourth-largest country by total area. Governed by the Communist Party of China, the state exercises jurisdiction over 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four direct-controlled municipalities, the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau. China emerged as one of the world's earliest civilizations, in the fertile basin of the Yellow River in the North China Plain. For millennia, China's political system was based on hereditary monarchies, or dynasties, beginning with the semi-legendary Xia dynasty in 21st century BCE. Since China has expanded, re-unified numerous times. In the 3rd century BCE, the Qin established the first Chinese empire; the succeeding Han dynasty, which ruled from 206 BC until 220 AD, saw some of the most advanced technology at that time, including papermaking and the compass, along with agricultural and medical improvements.
The invention of gunpowder and movable type in the Tang dynasty and Northern Song completed the Four Great Inventions. Tang culture spread in Asia, as the new Silk Route brought traders to as far as Mesopotamia and Horn of Africa. Dynastic rule ended in 1912 with the Xinhai Revolution; the Chinese Civil War resulted in a division of territory in 1949, when the Communist Party of China established the People's Republic of China, a unitary one-party sovereign state on Mainland China, while the Kuomintang-led government retreated to the island of Taiwan. The political status of Taiwan remains disputed. Since the introduction of economic reforms in 1978, China's economy has been one of the world's fastest-growing with annual growth rates above 6 percent. According to the World Bank, China's GDP grew from $150 billion in 1978 to $12.24 trillion by 2017. Since 2010, China has been the world's second-largest economy by nominal GDP and since 2014, the largest economy in the world by purchasing power parity.
China is the world's largest exporter and second-largest importer of goods. China is a recognized nuclear weapons state and has the world's largest standing army and second-largest defense budget; the PRC is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council as it replaced the ROC in 1971, as well as an active global partner of ASEAN Plus mechanism. China is a leading member of numerous formal and informal multilateral organizations, including the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, WTO, APEC, BRICS, the BCIM, the G20. In recent times, scholars have argued that it will soon be a world superpower, rivaling the United States; the word "China" has been used in English since the 16th century. It is not a word used by the Chinese themselves, it has been traced through Portuguese and Persian back to the Sanskrit word Cīna, used in ancient India."China" appears in Richard Eden's 1555 translation of the 1516 journal of the Portuguese explorer Duarte Barbosa. Barbosa's usage was derived from Persian Chīn, in turn derived from Sanskrit Cīna.
Cīna was first used including the Mahābhārata and the Laws of Manu. In 1655, Martino Martini suggested that the word China is derived from the name of the Qin dynasty. Although this derivation is still given in various sources, it is complicated by the fact that the Sanskrit word appears in pre-Qin literature; the word may have referred to a state such as Yelang. The meaning transferred to China as a whole; the origin of the Sanskrit word is still a matter of debate, according to the Oxford English Dictionary. The official name of the modern state is the "People's Republic of China"; the shorter form is "China" Zhōngguó, from zhōng and guó, a term which developed under the Western Zhou dynasty in reference to its royal demesne. It was applied to the area around Luoyi during the Eastern Zhou and to China's Central Plain before being used as an occasional synonym for the state under the Qing, it was used as a cultural concept to distinguish the Huaxia people from perceived "barbarians". The name Zhongguo is translated as "Middle Kingdom" in English.
Archaeological evidence suggests that early hominids inhabited China between 2.24 million and 250,000 years ago. The hominid fossils of Peking Man, a Homo erectus who used fire, were discovered in a cave at Zhoukoudian near Beijing; the fossilized teeth of Homo sapiens have been discovered in Fuyan Cave in Hunan. Chinese proto-writing existed in Jiahu around 7000 BCE, Damaidi around 6000 BCE, Dadiwan from 5800–5400 BCE, Banpo dating from the 5th millennium BCE; some scholars have suggested. According to Chinese tradition, the first dynasty was the Xia, which emerged around 2100 BCE; the dynasty was considered mythical by historians until scientific excavations found early Bronze Age sites at Erlitou, Henan in 1959. It remains unclear whether these sites are the remains of the Xia dynasty or of another culture from the same period; the succeeding Shang dynasty is the earliest to be confirmed by contemporary records. The Shang ruled the plain of the Yellow River in eastern China from the 17th to the 11th century BCE.
Their oracle bone script
Cao Cao's invasion of Xu Province
Cao Cao's invasion of Xu Province was a punitive invasion launched by the warlord Cao Cao against Tao Qian, the Governor of Xu Province, in the late Eastern Han dynasty. The casus belli for the invasion was the murder of Cao Song, in Xu Province. Although Tao Qian's culpability was questionable, Cao Cao nonetheless held him responsible; the invasion took place in two separate waves in 193 and 194, during each of which Cao Cao captured a number of towns and engaged in collective punishment of the civilian populace. Cao Cao's father Cao Song was living in his hometown Qiao after retirement until it became a battlefield when the Campaign against Dong Zhuo happened. So Cao Song along with the rest of Cao's family moved to Langya in Xu Province. By 193, Cao Cao had established a base in Yan Province, and he invited his father over to his territory. However, before Cao's family could reunite, they were murdered on the border of Xu Province and Yan Province. There were two accounts of. One was that the governor of Xu Province, Tao Qian, sent his men to kill Cao's family because he was defeated by Cao several times.
The other was that Tao Qian sent people to protect Cao's family because he was afraid of Cao Cao. But his men killed Cao's family for the great fortune. Regardless of Tao Qian's culpability, Cao Cao intended to hold him responsible for the murder of his father. In the summer or autumn of 193, Cao Cao invaded Xu Province with an unspecified number of troops and captured over ten cities. After conquering Pengcheng, Cao Cao killed more than 10,000 defenders. Tao Qian fled to Tan. Thwarted and low on rations Cao Cao turned his army around, sacking in the process the counties of Qulü, Xiaqiu; the local population was swollen with refugees from the violence of the capital regions. Cao Cao's army killed over 100,000 civilians, including both men and women, such that the Si River was stoppered up with their corpses, his army tore down the villages into ruins. In the spring of 194, Cao Cao's army returned to Xu Province, Tao Qian begged aid from Tian Kai in the nearby Qing Province. Tian Kai sent Tao Qian a force of some thousand men commanded by Liu Bei.
Tao Qian, seeking to open a southern front against Cao Cao, appointed Liu Bei as the Inspector of Yu Province, transferred 4,000 soldiers into his service. Along with Tao Qian's officer Cao Bao, Liu Bei encamped east of Tan. Cao Cao's army plundered Donghai, destroying all in its path. Returning west, Cao Cao defeated Tao Qian's forces led by Liu Bei. According to one source, Cao Cao conquered the nearby city of Xiangben after this. Xu Province was only granted reprieve when Zhang Miao betrayed Cao Cao and invited Lü Bu to take over Cao Cao's home base in Yan Province. Cao Cao turned his army back to attack Lü Bu. Liu Bei shifted his alliance from Tian Kai towards Tao Qian and he remained in Xu Province after Cao Cao left; when Tao Qian died of illness in 194, his sons Tao Shang and Tao Ying were passed over for governorship by the local elite in favour of Liu Bei. Thus Liu Bei gained his first territory as a result of Cao Cao's campaign. Cao Cao's invasion of Xu Province is featured as playable stages in the seventh and eighth instalments of Koei's Dynasty Warriors video game series.
Chen Shou, 三國志, 280s or 290s. Pei Songzhi, annotation, 429. Hong Kong: Zhonghua Publishing, 1971. 5 vols. de Crespigny, Rafe. To Establish Peace. 1. Australian National University Faculty of Asian Studies. Fan Ye, et al. 後漢書, 445. Beijing: Zhonghua Publishing, 1965. 12 vols. Sima Guang, et al. 資治通鑒, 1084. Hu Sanxing, annotation, 1286. Beijing: Zhonghua Publishing, 1956. 20 vols. Wu Guoqing. 中國戰爭史. 4. Beijing: Gold Wall Press
Hanyu Pinyin abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Chinese in mainland China and to some extent in Taiwan. It is used to teach Standard Mandarin Chinese, written using Chinese characters; the system includes four diacritics denoting tones. Pinyin without tone marks is used to spell Chinese names and words in languages written with the Latin alphabet, in certain computer input methods to enter Chinese characters; the pinyin system was developed in the 1950s by many linguists, including Zhou Youguang, based on earlier forms of romanizations of Chinese. It was published by revised several times; the International Organization for Standardization adopted pinyin as an international standard in 1982, was followed by the United Nations in 1986. The system was adopted as the official standard in Taiwan in 2009, where it is used for international events rather than for educational or computer-input purposes, but "some cities and organizations, notably in the south of Taiwan, did not accept this", so it remains one of several rival romanization systems in use.
The word Hànyǔ means'the spoken language of the Han people', while Pīnyīn means'spelled sounds'. In 1605, the Jesuit missionary Matteo Ricci published Xizi Qiji in Beijing; this was the first book to use the Roman alphabet to write the Chinese language. Twenty years another Jesuit in China, Nicolas Trigault, issued his Xi Ru Ermu Zi at Hangzhou. Neither book had much immediate impact on the way in which Chinese thought about their writing system, the romanizations they described were intended more for Westerners than for the Chinese. One of the earliest Chinese thinkers to relate Western alphabets to Chinese was late Ming to early Qing dynasty scholar-official, Fang Yizhi; the first late Qing reformer to propose that China adopt a system of spelling was Song Shu. A student of the great scholars Yu Yue and Zhang Taiyan, Song had been to Japan and observed the stunning effect of the kana syllabaries and Western learning there; this galvanized him into activity on a number of fronts, one of the most important being reform of the script.
While Song did not himself create a system for spelling Sinitic languages, his discussion proved fertile and led to a proliferation of schemes for phonetic scripts. The Wade–Giles system was produced by Thomas Wade in 1859, further improved by Herbert Giles in the Chinese–English Dictionary of 1892, it was popular and used in English-language publications outside China until 1979. In the early 1930s, Communist Party of China leaders trained in Moscow introduced a phonetic alphabet using Roman letters, developed in the Soviet Oriental Institute of Leningrad and was intended to improve literacy in the Russian Far East; this Sin Wenz or "New Writing" was much more linguistically sophisticated than earlier alphabets, but with the major exception that it did not indicate tones of Chinese. In 1940, several thousand members attended a Border Region Sin Wenz Society convention. Mao Zedong and Zhu De, head of the army, both contributed their calligraphy for the masthead of the Sin Wenz Society's new journal.
Outside the CCP, other prominent supporters included Sun Fo. Over thirty journals soon appeared written in Sin Wenz, plus large numbers of translations, some contemporary Chinese literature, a spectrum of textbooks. In 1940, the movement reached an apex when Mao's Border Region Government declared that the Sin Wenz had the same legal status as traditional characters in government and public documents. Many educators and political leaders looked forward to the day when they would be universally accepted and replace Chinese characters. Opposition arose, because the system was less well adapted to writing regional languages, therefore would require learning Mandarin. Sin Wenz fell into relative disuse during the following years. In 1943, the U. S. military engaged Yale University to develop a romanization of Mandarin Chinese for its pilots flying over China. The resulting system is close to pinyin, but does not use English letters in unfamiliar ways. Medial semivowels are written with y and w, apical vowels with r or z.
Accent marks are used to indicate tone. Pinyin was created by Chinese linguists, including Zhou Youguang, as part of a Chinese government project in the 1950s. Zhou is called "the father of pinyin," Zhou worked as a banker in New York when he decided to return to China to help rebuild the country after the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949, he became an economics professor in Shanghai, in 1955, when China's Ministry of Education created a Committee for the Reform of the Chinese Written Language, Premier Zhou Enlai assigned Zhou Youguang the task of developing a new romanization system, despite the fact that he was not a professional linguist. Hanyu Pinyin was based on several existing systems: Gwoyeu Romatzyh of 1928, Latinxua Sin Wenz of 1931, the diacritic markings from zhuyin. "I'm not the father of pinyin," Zhou said years later. It's a lo
The Han dynasty was the second imperial dynasty of China, preceded by the Qin dynasty and succeeded by the Three Kingdoms period. Spanning over four centuries, the Han period is considered a golden age in Chinese history. To this day, China's majority ethnic group refers to themselves as the "Han Chinese" and the Chinese script is referred to as "Han characters", it was founded by the rebel leader Liu Bang, known posthumously as Emperor Gaozu of Han, interrupted by the Xin dynasty of the former regent Wang Mang. This interregnum separates the Han dynasty into two periods: the Western Han or Former Han and the Eastern Han or Later Han; the emperor was at the pinnacle of Han society. He presided over the Han government but shared power with both the nobility and appointed ministers who came from the scholarly gentry class; the Han Empire was divided into areas directly controlled by the central government using an innovation inherited from the Qin known as commanderies, a number of semi-autonomous kingdoms.
These kingdoms lost all vestiges of their independence following the Rebellion of the Seven States. From the reign of Emperor Wu onward, the Chinese court sponsored Confucianism in education and court politics, synthesized with the cosmology of scholars such as Dong Zhongshu; this policy endured until the fall of the Qing dynasty in 1911 AD. The Han dynasty saw an age of economic prosperity and witnessed a significant growth of the money economy first established during the Zhou dynasty; the coinage issued by the central government mint in 119 BC remained the standard coinage of China until the Tang dynasty. The period saw a number of limited institutional innovations. To finance its military campaigns and the settlement of newly conquered frontier territories, the Han government nationalized the private salt and iron industries in 117 BC, but these government monopolies were repealed during the Eastern Han dynasty. Science and technology during the Han period saw significant advances, including the process of papermaking, the nautical steering ship rudder, the use of negative numbers in mathematics, the raised-relief map, the hydraulic-powered armillary sphere for astronomy, a seismometer employing an inverted pendulum that could be used to discern the cardinal direction of distant earthquakes.
The Xiongnu, a nomadic steppe confederation, defeated the Han in 200 BC and forced the Han to submit as a de facto inferior and vassal partner, but continued their military raids on the Han borders. Emperor Wu launched several military campaigns against them; the ultimate Han victory in these wars forced the Xiongnu to accept vassal status as Han tributaries. These campaigns expanded Han sovereignty into the Tarim Basin of Central Asia, divided the Xiongnu into two separate confederations, helped establish the vast trade network known as the Silk Road, which reached as far as the Mediterranean world; the territories north of Han's borders were overrun by the nomadic Xianbei confederation. Emperor Wu launched successful military expeditions in the south, annexing Nanyue in 111 BC and Dian in 109 BC, in the Korean Peninsula where the Xuantu and Lelang Commanderies were established in 108 BC. After 92 AD, the palace eunuchs involved themselves in court politics, engaging in violent power struggles between the various consort clans of the empresses and empresses dowager, causing the Han's ultimate downfall.
Imperial authority was seriously challenged by large Daoist religious societies which instigated the Yellow Turban Rebellion and the Five Pecks of Rice Rebellion. Following the death of Emperor Ling, the palace eunuchs suffered wholesale massacre by military officers, allowing members of the aristocracy and military governors to become warlords and divide the empire; when Cao Pi, King of Wei, usurped the throne from Emperor Xian, the Han dynasty ceased to exist. According to the Records of the Grand Historian, after the collapse of the Qin dynasty the hegemon Xiang Yu appointed Liu Bang as prince of the small fief of Hanzhong, named after its location on the Han River. Following Liu Bang's victory in the Chu–Han Contention, the resulting Han dynasty was named after the Hanzhong fief. China's first imperial dynasty was the Qin dynasty; the Qin unified the Chinese Warring States by conquest, but their empire became unstable after the death of the first emperor Qin Shi Huang. Within four years, the dynasty's authority had collapsed in the face of rebellion.
Two former rebel leaders, Xiang Yu of Chu and Liu Bang of Han, engaged in a war to decide who would become hegemon of China, which had fissured into 18 kingdoms, each claiming allegiance to either Xiang Yu or Liu Bang. Although Xiang Yu proved to be a capable commander, Liu Bang defeated him at Battle of Gaixia, in modern-day Anhui. Liu Bang assumed the title "emperor" at the urging of his followers and is known posthumously as Emperor Gaozu. Chang'an was chosen as the new capital of the reunified empire under Han. At the beginning of the Western Han known as the Former Han dynasty, thirteen centrally controlled commanderies—including the capital region—existed in the western third of the empire, while the eastern two-thirds were divided into ten semi-autonomous kingdoms. To placate his prominent commanders from the war with Chu, Emperor Gaozu enfeoffed some of them as kings. By 157 BC, the Han court h