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
Manchuria is a name first used in the 17th century by Japanese people to refer to a large geographic region in Northeast Asia. Depending on the context, Manchuria can either refer to a region that falls within the People's Republic of China or a larger region divided between China and Russia. "Manchuria" is used outside China to denote the geographical and historical region. This region is the traditional homeland of the Xianbei and Jurchen peoples, who built several states within the area historically; the definition of Manchuria can be any one of several regions of various size. These are, from smallest to largest: Northeast China: consisting of Heilongjiang and Liaoning; this is the area referred to as "Manchuria" in the World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions. Inner Manchuria: the above, plus parts of modern Inner Mongolia, plus Chengde; the above, plus Outer Manchuria: the area from the Amur and Ussuri rivers to the Stanovoy Mountains and the Sea of Japan. In Russian administrative terms, Ussuri krai, southern Harbin oblast', Primorskiy kray.
These were part of the Qing dynasty China according to the Treaty of Nerchinsk that defined the border in the region between China and Russia, but were ceded to Russia by the unequal treaties of the Treaty of Aigun and the Treaty of Peking. The above, plus Sakhalin Island, included on Qing dynasty maps as part of Outer Manchuria though it is not explicitly mentioned in the Treaty of Nerchinsk; the island was included in Manchuria on maps made by the Japanese Shogunate and Russian Empire. Despite lines on maps and empires' political claims, the island was inhabited by Ainu people until the Soviet Union enforced an evacuation policy after 1945. Three centuries and a half must now pass away before entering upon the next act of the Manchu drama; the Nü-chêns had been scotched, but not killed, by their Mongol conquerors, one hundred and thirty-four years were themselves driven out of China, a pure native dynasty being re-established under the style of Ming, "Bright." During the ensuing two hundred years the Nü-chêns were scarcely heard of, the House of Ming being busily occupied in other directions.
Their warlike spirit, found scope and nourishment in the expeditions organised against Japan and Tan-lo, or Quelpart, as named by the Dutch, a large island to the south of the Korean peninsula. It may be noted here that "Manchuria" is unknown to the Chinese or to the Manchus themselves as a geographical expression; the present extensive home of the Manchus is spoken of as the Three Eastern Provinces, namely, Shêngking, or Liao-tung, or Kuan-tung and Heilungchiang or Tsitsihar. – Herbert A. Giles and the Manchus, 1912 "Manchuria" is a translation of the Japanese word Manshū, which dates from the 19th century; the name Manju was invented and given to the Jurchen people by Hong Taiji in 1635 as a new name for their ethnic group. According to the Japanese scholar Junko Miyawaki-Okada, the Japanese geographer Takahashi Kageyasu was the first to use the term "満州" as a place name in 1809 in the Nippon Henkai Ryakuzu, it was from that work that Westerners adopted the name. According to Mark C. Elliott, Katsuragawa Hoshū's 1794 work, the "Hokusa bunryaku", was where "満州" first appeared as a place name was in two maps included in the work, "Ashia zenzu" and "Chikyū hankyū sōzu" which were created by Katsuragawa.
"満州" began to appear as a place names in more maps created by Japanese like Kondi Jūzō, Takahashi Kageyasu, Baba Sadayoshi and Yamada Ren, these maps were brought to Europe by the Dutch Philipp von Siebold. According to Nakami Tatsuo, Philip Franz von Siebold was the one who brought the usage of the term Manchuria to Europeans after borrowing it from the Japanese, who were the first to use it in a geographic manner in the eighteenth century although neither the Manchu nor Chinese languages had a term in their own language equivalent to "Manchuria" as a geographic place name; the Manchu and Chinese languages had no such word as "Manchuria" and the word has imperialist connotations. According to Bill Sewell, it was Europeans who first started using the name Manchuria to refer to the location and it is "not a genuine geographic term"; the historian Gavan McCormack agreed with Robert H. G. Lee's statement that "The term Manchuria or Man-chou is a modern creation used by westerners and Japanese", with McCormack writing that the term Manchuria is imperialistic in nature and has no "precise meaning" since the Japanese deliberately promoted the use of "Manchuria" as a geographic name to promote its separation from China at the time they were setting up their puppet state of Manchukuo.
The Japanese had their own motive for deliberately spreading the usage of the term Manchuria. The historian Norman Smith wrote that "The term'Manchuria' is controversial". Professor Mariko Asano Tamanoi said that she "should use the term in quotation marks" when referring to Manchuria. In his 2012 dissertation on the Jurchen peo
The Wu Xing known as the Five Elements, Five Phases, the Five Agents, the Five Movements, Five Processes, the Five Steps/Stages and the Five Planets of significant gravity is the short form of "Wǔ zhǒng liúxíng zhī qì" or "the five types of chi dominating at different times". It is a fivefold conceptual scheme that many traditional Chinese fields used to explain a wide array of phenomena, from cosmic cycles to the interaction between internal organs, from the succession of political regimes to the properties of medicinal drugs; the "Five Phases" are Wood, Earth and Water. This order of presentation is known as the "mutual generation" sequence. In the order of "mutual overcoming", they are Wood, Water and Metal; the system of five phases was used for describing relationships between phenomena. After it came to maturity in the second or first century BCE during the Han dynasty, this device was employed in many fields of early Chinese thought, including disparate fields such as geomancy or Feng shui, traditional Chinese medicine, military strategy, martial arts.
The system is still used as a reference in some forms of complementary and alternative medicine and martial arts. Xing of'Wu Xing' means moving. Wu Xing refers to the five major planets that create five dimensions of earth life. "Wu Xing" is widely translated as "Five Elements" and this is used extensively by many including practitioners of Five Element acupuncture. This translation arose by false analogy with the Western system of the four elements. Whereas the classical Greek elements were concerned with substances or natural qualities, the Chinese xíng are "primarily concerned with process and change," hence the common translation as "phases" or "agents". By the same token, Mù is thought of as "Tree" rather than "Wood"; the word'element' is thus used within the context of Chinese medicine with a different meaning to its usual meaning. It should be recognized that the word phase, although preferred, is not perfect. Phase is a better translation for the five seasons mentioned below, so agents or processes might be preferred for the primary term xíng.
Manfred Porkert attempts to resolve this by using Evolutive Phase for 五行 Wǔ Xíng and Circuit Phase for 五運 Wǔ Yùn, but these terms are unwieldy. Some of the Mawangdui Silk Texts present the Wu Xing as "five virtues" or types of activities. Within Chinese medicine texts the Wu Xing are referred to as Wu Yun or a combination of the two characters these emphasise the correspondence of five elements to five'seasons'. Another tradition refers to the Wǔ Xíng as the Five Virtues; the five phases are around 72 days each and are used to describe the state in nature: Wood/Spring: a period of growth, which generates abundant wood and vitality Fire/Summer: a period of swelling, brimming with fire and energy Earth: the in-between transitional seasonal periods, or a separate'season' known as Late Summer or Long Summer - in the latter case associated with leveling and dampening and fruition Metal/Autumn: a period of harvesting and collecting Water/Winter: a period of retreat, where stillness and storage pervades The doctrine of five phases describes two cycles, a generating or creation cycle known as "mother-son", an overcoming or destruction cycle known as "grandfather-grandson", of interactions between the phases.
Within Chinese medicine the effects of these two main relations are further elaborated: Inter-promoting Inter-acting Over-acting Counter-acting The common memory jogs, which help to remind in what order the phases are: Wood feeds Fire Fire creates Earth Earth bears Metal Metal collects Water Water nourishes WoodOther common words for this cycle include "begets", "engenders" and "mothers". Wood parts Earth Earth dams Water Water extinguishes Fire Fire melts Metal Metal chops WoodThis cycle might be called "controls", "restrains" or "fathers". According to Wu Xing theory, the structure of the cosmos mirrors the five phases; each phase has a complex series of associations with different aspects of nature, as can be seen in the following table. In the ancient Chinese form of geomancy, known as Feng Shui, practitioners all based their art and system on the five phases. All of these phases are represented within the trigrams. Associated with these phases are colors and shapes. Based on a particular directional energy flow from one phase to the next, the interaction can be expansive, destructive, or exhaustive.
A proper knowledge of each aspect of energy flow will enable the Feng Shui practitioner to apply certain cures or rearrangement of energy in a way they believe to be beneficial for the receiver of the Feng Shui Treatment. According to the Warring States period political philosopher Zou Yan 鄒衍, each of the five elements possesses a personified "virtue", which indicates the foreordained destiny of a dynasty. Zou Yan claims that the Mandate of Heaven sanctions the legitimacy of a dynasty by sending self-manifesting auspicious signs in the ritu
Traditional Chinese characters
Traditional Chinese characters are Chinese characters in any character set that does not contain newly created characters or character substitutions performed after 1946. They are most the characters in the standardized character sets of Taiwan, of Hong Kong and Macau, in the Kangxi Dictionary; the modern shapes of traditional Chinese characters first appeared with the emergence of the clerical script during the Han Dynasty, have been more or less stable since the 5th century. The retronym "traditional Chinese" is used to contrast traditional characters with Simplified Chinese characters, a standardized character set introduced by the government of the People's Republic of China on Mainland China in the 1950s. Traditional Chinese characters are used in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau. In contrast, Simplified Chinese characters are used in mainland China and Malaysia in official publications. However, several countries – such as Australia, the US and Canada – are increasing their number of printed materials in Simplified Chinese, to better accommodate citizens from mainland China.
The debate on traditional and simplified Chinese characters has been a long-running issue among Chinese communities. A large number of overseas Chinese online newspapers allow users to switch between both character sets. Although simplified characters are taught and endorsed by the government of China, there is no prohibition against the use of traditional characters. Traditional characters are used informally in regions in China in handwriting and used for inscriptions and religious text, they are retained in logos or graphics to evoke yesteryear. Nonetheless, the vast majority of media and communications in China is dominated by simplified characters. In Hong Kong and Macau, Traditional Chinese has been the legal written form since colonial times. In recent years, simplified Chinese characters in Hong Kong and Macau has appeared to accommodate Mainland Chinese tourists and immigrants; this has led to concerns by many residents to protect their local heritage. Taiwan has never adopted simplified characters.
The use of simplified characters in official documents is prohibited by the government of Taiwan. Simplified characters are understood to a certain extent by any educated Taiwanese, learning to read them takes little effort; some stroke simplifications that have been incorporated into Simplified Chinese are in common use in handwriting. For example, while the name of Taiwan is written as 臺灣, the semi-simplified name 台灣 is acceptable to write in official documents. In Southeast Asia, the Chinese Filipino community continues to be one of the most conservative regarding simplification. While major public universities are teaching simplified characters, many well-established Chinese schools still use traditional characters. Publications like the Chinese Commercial News, World News, United Daily News still use traditional characters. On the other hand, the Philippine Chinese Daily uses simplified. Aside from local newspapers, magazines from Hong Kong, such as the Yazhou Zhoukan, are found in some bookstores.
In case of film or television subtitles on DVD, the Chinese dub, used in Philippines is the same as the one used in Taiwan. This is because the DVDs belongs to DVD Region Code 3. Hence, most of the subtitles are in Traditional Characters. Overseas Chinese in the United States have long used traditional characters. A major influx of Chinese immigrants to the United States occurred during the latter half of the 19th century, before the standardization of simplified characters. Therefore, United States public notices and signage in Chinese are in Traditional Chinese. Traditional Chinese characters are called several different names within the Chinese-speaking world; the government of Taiwan calls traditional Chinese characters standard characters or orthodox characters. However, the same term is used outside Taiwan to distinguish standard and traditional characters from variant and idiomatic characters. In contrast, users of traditional characters outside Taiwan, such as those in Hong Kong and overseas Chinese communities, users of simplified Chinese characters, call them complex characters.
An informal name sometimes used by users of simplified characters is "old characters". Users of traditional characters sometimes refer them as "Full Chinese characters" to distinguish them from simplified Chinese characters; some traditional character users argue that traditional characters are the original form of the Chinese characters and cannot be called "complex". Simplified characters cannot be "standard" because they are not used in all Chinese-speaking regions. Conversely, supporters of simplified Chinese characters object to the description of traditional characters as "standard," since they view the new simplified characters as the contemporary standard used by the vast majority of Chinese speakers, they point out that traditional characters are not traditional as many Chinese characters have been made more elaborate over time. Some people refer to traditional characters as "proper characters" and modernized characters as "simplified-stroke characters" (sim
The Jurchen known by many variant names, were a tribal confederation of Tungusic and affiliated peoples, subdivided into three major groups: Jianzhou Jurchens. The Jurchen established the Jin dynasty, whose empire conquered the Northern Song in 1127, gaining control of most of North China. Jin control over China lasted until their 1234 conquest by the Mongols; the most widely-known of these peoples are the Jianzhou, who are commonly referred to as the Jurchen. In about 1630, the Jianzhou combined with their neighbors as the Manchu; the Yeren included the Nanai, Negidals and Nivkh. The Nivkh language is technically a non-Tungusic language isolate, although the Nivkh themselves share many cultural similarities with their neighbors; because the Haixi had poor relations with the Jianzhou, the Haixi were conquered and absorbed into the Manchu ethnicity. The Manchus would conquer the Ming and establish the Qing dynasty, which ruled China until Xinhai Revolution; the initial Khitan form of the name was said to be Lüzhen.
The variant Nrjo-tsyin appeared in the 10th century under the Liao dynasty. The Jurchens were interchangeably known as the Nrjo-drik; this is traditionally explained as an effect of the Chinese naming taboo, with the character 真 being removed after the 1031 enthronement of Zhigu, Emperor Xingzong of Liao, because it appeared in the sinified form of his personal name. Aisin-Gioro Ulhicun, argues that this was a folk etymology and the original reason was uncertainty among dialects regarding the name's final -n. Jurchen is an anglicization of Jurčen, an attempted reconstruction of this unattested original form of the native name, transcribed into Middle Chinese as Trjuwk-li-tsyin and into Khitan small script as Julisen; the ethnonyms Sushen and Jizhen recorded in geographical works like the Classic of Mountains and Seas and the Book of Wei are cognates. It was the source of Fra Mauro's Zorça and Marco Polo's Ciorcia, reflecting the Persian form of their name. Vajda considers that the Jurchens' name derives from the Tungusic words for "reindeer people" and is cognate with the names of the Orochs of Khabarovsk Province and the Oroks of Sakhalin.
Janhunen argues that these records reflect the Classical Mongolian plural form of the name, recorded in the Secret History as J̌ürčät, further reconstructed as *Jörcid, The modern Mongolian form is Jürčid whose medial -r- does not appear in the Jurchen Jucen or Jušen or Manchu Jushen. In Manchu, this word was more used to describe the serfs—though not slaves—of the free Manchu people, who were themselves the former Jurchens. To describe the historical people who founded the Jin dynasty, they reborrowed the Mongolian name as Jurcit. At the time of their notice by Chinese historians, the Jurchen inhabited the forests and river valleys of the land, now divided between China's Heilongjiang Province and Russia's Primorsky Krai province. In earlier records, this area was known as the home of the Sushen, the Yilou, the Wuji, the Mohe. Under the Qing and within modern scholarship, some sources stress the continuity between these earlier peoples with the Jurchen but this remains conjectural; the Tungusic Mohe tribes were subjects of the multi-ethnic kingdom of Balhae.
The Mohe enjoyed eating pork, practiced pig farming extensively, were sedentary. They used both dog skins for coats, they were predominantly farmers and grew soybean, wheat and rice in addition to hunting. By the 11th century, the Jurchens had become vassals of the Khitan rulers of the Liao dynasty; the Jurchens in the Yalu River region had been tributaries of Goryeo since the reign of Wang Geon, who called upon them during the wars of the Later Three Kingdoms period, but the Jurchens switched allegiance between Liao and Goryeo multiple times out of expedience. They offered tribute to both courts out of political necessity and the attraction of material benefits. Wanyan Aguda, chief of the Wanyan tribe, unified the various Jurchen tribes in 1115 and declared himself emperor. In 1120 he seized Shangjing known as Linhuang Prefecture, the northern capital of the Liao dynasty. During the Jin–Song Wars, the Jurchens invaded the Northern Song dynasty and overran most of northern China; the Jurchens created the puppet regimes of Da Qi and Da Chu but adopted a dynastic name and became known as "Jin" 金, which means "gold", not to be confused with the earlier Jin 晋 dynasties named after the region around Shanxi and Henan provinces.
The Jin dynasty captured the Northern Song dynasty's capital, Bianjing, in 1127. Their armies pushed the Song all the way south to the Yangtze River and settled on a border with the Southern Song dynasty along the Huai River; the name of the Jurchen dynasty in Chinese — meaning "gold"—is derived from the "Gold River" in their ancestral homeland. The Jurchens who settled into urban communities intermarried with other ethnicities in China; the Jin rulers themselves came to follow Confucian norms. After 1189, the Jin dynasty became involved in conflicts with the Mongols. By 1215, after losing much territory to the Mongols, the Jurchens moved t
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
Hong Taiji, sometimes written as Huang Taiji and referred to as Abahai in Western literature, was an Emperor of the Qing dynasty. He was responsible for consolidating the empire that his father Nurhaci had founded and laid the groundwork for the conquest of the Ming dynasty, although he died before this was accomplished, he was responsible for changing the name of his people from Jurchen to Manchu in 1635, as well as that of the dynasty from Later Jin to Qing in 1636. The Qing dynasty lasted until 1912; because his father, did not assume an imperial title while alive, Hong Taiji is sometimes considered to be the first Qing emperor, but because Nurhaci was posthumously awarded the imperial title, Hong Taiji is called the second emperor of the Qing. It is unclear whether "Hong Taiji" was a personal name. Written Hong taiji in Manchu, it was borrowed from the Mongolian title Khong Tayiji; that Mongolian term was itself derived from the Chinese huang taizi 皇太子, but in Mongolian it meant, among other things, something like "respected son".
Alternatively, historian Pamela Crossley argues that "Hung Taiji" was a title "of Mongolian inspiration" derived from hung, a word that appeared in other Mongolian titles at the time. Early seventeenth-century Chinese and Korean sources rendered his name as "Hong Taiji"; the modern Chinese rendering "Huang Taiji", which uses the character huang, misleadingly implies that Hong Taiji once held the title of "imperial prince" or heir apparent though his father and predecessor Nurhaci never designated a successor."Hong Taiji" was rarely used in Manchu sources, because they observed a taboo on the personal names of emperors. In redacted documents, Hong Taiji was called the "Fourth Beile" or "fourth prince", indicating that he was the fourth ranked among the eight beile Nurhaci had designated from among his sons. However, an archival document rediscovered in 1996 and recounting events from 1621 calls him "Hong Taiji" in a discussion concerning the possible naming of Nurhaci's heir apparent, a title that the document refers to as taise.
Tatiana Pang and Giovanni Stary, two specialists of early Manchu history, consider this document as "further evidence" that Hong Taiji was his real name, "not being at all connected with the Chinese title huang taizi". Historian Mark Elliott views this as persuasive evidence that Hong Taiji was not a title, but a personal name. Western scholars used to refer to Hong Taiji as "Abahai", but this appellation is now considered mistaken. Hong Taiji was never mentioned under this name in Chinese sources. V. Gorsky and repeated by sinologists starting in the early twentieth century. Giovanni Stary states that this name may have originated by confusing "Abkai" with Abkai sure, Hong Taiji's era name in the Manchu language. Though "Abahai" is indeed "unattested in Manchu sources", it might have derived from the Mongol word Abaġai, an honorary name given to the younger sons of hereditary monarchs. According to another view, Hong Taiji was mistakenly referred to as Abahai as a result of a confusion with the name of Nurhaci's main consort Lady Abahai.
Hong Taiji was first Khan of the Later Jin and Emperor of the Qing dynasty, after he changed its name. His title as Great Khan was Bogd Sécén Khaan, his reign names, which were used in his lifetime to record dates, were Tiancong 天聰 from 1627 to 1636, Chongde 崇德 from 1636 to 1643. Hong Taiji's temple name, by which he was worshipped at the Imperial Ancestral Temple, was Taizong 太宗, the name, conventionally given to the second emperor of a dynasty, his posthumous name, chosen to reflect his style of rule, was "Wen Huangdi" 文皇帝, which means "the culturing emperor" or "the emperor of letters". Hong Taiji was the eighth son of Nurhaci, whom he succeeded as the second ruler of the Later Jin dynasty in 1626. Although it was always thought of as gossip, he was said to be involved in the suicide of Prince Dorgon's mother, Lady Abahai in order to block the succession of his younger brother; this is speculated because at the time of Nurhaci's death, there were four Lords/Beile with Hong Taiji as the lowest rank, but the most fit one.
At the end of Nurhaci's reign, Hong Taiji got hold of the two White Banners, but after Lady Abahai's death, he switched his two banners with Dorgon and Dodo's two Yellow banners. In the end, Hong Taiji had control over the two strongest/highest class banners- the Plain and Bordered Yellow Banners and the most influence. From there, he got rid of his competitor's powers, he would receive the Plain Blue Banner from his fifth brother Manggūltai, the third strongest banner. Those three banners would become the Upper Three Banners during the early part of the Qing dynasty. During his reign, Hong Taiji started recruitment of Han ethnicity officials. After a 1623 revolt, Nurhaci came to mistrust his Nikan followers so Hong Taiji began their assimilation into the country and government, he realized that they would remain the majority and the Manchus would still be the minority, which meant that to control the Han people, they would need to live together or else the Qing dynasty would become a repeat of the Yuan dynasty, the demise of, in part due to its rulers losing touch with the people.
A mass marriage of Han Chinese officers and officials to Manchu women numbering 1,000 couples