The term eunuch refers to a man from antiquity, castrated in order to serve a specific social function. In Latin, the words eunuchus and castratus were used to denote eunuchs; the earliest records for intentional castration to produce eunuchs are from the Sumerian city of Lagash in the 21st century BC. Over the millennia since, they have performed a wide variety of functions in many different cultures: courtiers or equivalent domestics, treble singers, religious specialists, royal guards, government officials, guardians of women or harem servants. Eunuchs would be servants or slaves, castrated in order to make them reliable servants of a royal court where physical access to the ruler could wield great influence. Lowly domestic functions—such as making the ruler's bed, bathing him, cutting his hair, carrying him in his litter, or relaying messages—could in theory give a eunuch "the ruler's ear" and impart de facto power on the formally humble but trusted servant. Similar instances are reflected in etymology of many high offices.
Eunuchs did not have loyalties to the military, the aristocracy, or to a family of their own, were thus seen as more trustworthy and less interested in establishing a private'dynasty'. Because their condition lowered their social status, they could be replaced or killed without repercussion. In cultures that had both harems and eunuchs, eunuchs were sometimes used as harem servants or seraglio guards. Eunuch comes from the Greek word eunoukhos, first attested in a fragment of Hipponax, the 6th century BC comic poet and prolific inventor of compound words; the acerbic poet describes a certain lover of fine food having "consumed his estate dining lavishly and at leisure every day on tuna and garlic-honey cheese paté like a Lampsacene eunoukhos". In ancient classical literature from the early 5th century BC onward, the word designates some incapacity for or abstention from procreation, whether due to natural constitution or to physical mutilation. For instance, Lucian suggests two methods to determine whether someone is a eunuch: physical inspection of the body, or scrutiny of his ability to perform sexually with females.
The earliest surviving etymology of the word is from late antiquity. The 5th century Etymologicon by Orion of Thebes offers two alternative origins for the word eunuch: first, to tēn eunēn ekhein, "guarding the bed", a derivation inferred from eunuchs' established role at the time as "bedchamber attendants" in the imperial palace, second, to eu tou nou ekhein, "being good with respect to the mind", which Orion explains based on their "being deprived of male-female intercourse, the things that the ancients used to call irrational". Orion's second option reflects well-established idioms in Greek, as shown by entries for noos and ekhein in Liddell and Scott's Greek-English Lexicon, while the first option is not listed as an idiom under eunē in that standard reference work. However, the first option was cited by the late 9th century Byzantine emperor Leo VI in his New Constitution 98 banning the marriage of eunuchs, in which he noted eunuchs' reputation as trustworthy guardians of the marriage bed and claimed that the word eunuch attested to this kind of employment.
The emperor goes further than Orion by attributing eunuchs' lack of male-female intercourse to castration, which he said was performed with the intention "that they will no longer do the things that males do, or at least to extinguish whatever has to do with desire for the female sex". The 11th century Byzantine monk Nikon of the Black Mountain, opting instead for Orion's second alternative, stated that the word came from eunoein, thus meaning "to be well-minded, well-inclined, well-disposed or favorable", but unlike Orion he argued that this was due to the trust that certain jealous and suspicious foreign rulers placed in the loyalty of their eunuchized servants. Theophylact of Ohrid in a dialogue In Defence of Eunuchs stated that the origin of the word was from eunoein and ekhein, "to have, hold", since they were always "well-disposed" toward the master who "held" or owned them; the 12th century Etymologicum Magnum repeats the entry from Orion, but stands by the first option, while attributing the second option to what "some say".
In the late 12th century, Eustathius of Thessalonica offered an original derivation of the word from eunis + okheuein, "deprived of mating". In translations of the Bible into modern European languages, such as the Luther Bible or the King James Bible, the word eunuchus as found in the Latin Vulgate is rendered as officer, official or chamberlain, consistent with the idea that the original meaning of eunuch was bed-keeper. Modern religious scholars have been disinclined to assume that the courts of Israel and Judah included castrated men though the original translation of the Bible into Greek used the word eunoukhos; the early 17th century scholar and theologian Gerardus Vossius therefore explains that the word designated an office, he affirms the view that it was derived from eunē and ekhein. He says the word came to be applied to castrated men in general because such men were the usual holders of that office. Still, Vossius notes the alternative etymologies offered by Eustathius and others, calling these analyse
Emperor Wu of Han
Emperor Wu of Han, born Liu Che, courtesy name Tong, was the seventh emperor of the Han dynasty of China, ruling from 141–87 BC. His reign lasted 54 years — a record not broken until the reign of the Kangxi Emperor more than 1,800 years later, his reign resulted in a vast territorial expansion and the development of a strong and centralized state resulting from his governmental reorganization, including his promotion of Confucian doctrines. In the field of historical social and cultural studies, Emperor Wu is known for his religious innovations and patronage of the poetic and musical arts, including development of the Imperial Music Bureau into a prestigious entity, it was during his reign that cultural contact with western Eurasia was increased and indirectly. As a military campaigner, Emperor Wu led Han China through its greatest expansion. At its height, the Empire's borders spanned from modern Kyrgyzstan in the west, to Korea in the east, to northern Vietnam in the south. Emperor Wu repelled the nomadic Xiongnu from systematically raiding northern China, dispatched his envoy Zhang Qian in 139 BC to seek an alliance with the Yuezhi of Kangju.
This resulted in further missions to Central Asia. Although historical records do not describe him as being aware of Buddhism, emphasizing rather his interest in shamanism, the cultural exchanges that occurred as a consequence of these embassies suggest that he received Buddhist statues from Central Asia, as depicted in the murals found in the Mogao Caves. Emperor Wu is considered one of the greatest emperors in Chinese history, due to his effective governance which made the Han dynasty one of the most powerful nations in the world. Michael Loewe called the reign of Emperor Wu the "high point" of "Modernist" policies, looking back to "adapt ideas from the pre-Han period." His policies and most trusted. However, despite establishing an autocratic and centralised state, Emperor Wu adopted the principles of Confucianism as the state philosophy and code of ethics for his empire and started a school to teach future administrators the Confucian classics; these reforms had an enduring effect throughout the existence of imperial China and an enormous influence on neighbouring civilizations.
The personal name of Emperor Wu was Liu Che. The use of "Han" in referring to emperor Wu is a reference to the Han dynasty of which he was a part, his family name is "Liu". The character "Di" is a title: this is the Chinese word which in imperial history of China means "emperor"; the character "Wu" means "martial" or "warlike", but is related to the concept of a particular divinity in the historical Chinese religious pantheon existing at that time. Combined, "Wu" plus "di" makes the name "Wudi", the emperor's posthumous name used for historical and for religious purposes, such as offering him posthumous honours at his tomb. One of Han Wudi's innovations was the practice of changing reign names after a number of years, as deemed auspicious or to commemorate some event, thus the practice for dating years during the reign of Wudi was represented by the nth year of the and "Reign Year Name" for the specific name of that regnal year. Liu Che was the 10th son of the oldest living son from Emperor Wen of Han.
His mother Wang Zhi was married to a commoner named Jin Wangsun and had a daughter from that marriage. However, her mother Zang Er was told by a soothsayer that both Wang Zhi and her younger sister would one day become honoured, she got the idea to offer her daughters to the crown prince Liu Qi, forcibly divorced Wang Zhi from her husband. After being offered to Liu Qi, Wang Zhi bore him three daughters — Princess Yangxin, Princess Nangong and Princess Longlü. On the day of Liu Qi's accession to the throne as Emperor Jing of Han, Wang Zhi gave birth to Liu Che, was promoted to a consort for giving birth to a royal prince. While she was pregnant, she claimed. Emperor Jing was ecstatic over the divine implication, made the young Liu Che the Prince of Jiaodong in 153 BC. An intelligent boy, Liu Che was considered to be Emperor Jing's favourite son from a young age. Emperor Jing's formal wife, Empress Bo, was childless; as a result, Emperor Jing's oldest son Liu Rong, born of his favourite concubine Lady Li, was made crown prince in 153 BC.
Lady Li, feeling certain that her son would become the emperor, grew arrogant and intolerant, threw tantrums at Emperor Jing out of jealousy over his favouring other concubines. Her lack of tact provided the opportunity for Consort Wang and the young Liu Che to gain the emperor's favour; when Emperor Jing's older sister, Eldest Princess Guantao Liu Piao, offered to marry her daughter to Liu Rong, Lady Li rudely rejected the proposal out of her dislike of Princess Guantao who provided new concubines for Emperor Jing and was thus gaining favour with the Emperor over Lady Li. Frustrated by the rejection, Princess Guantao approached another of Emperor Jing's favoured concubines: Consort Wang, observing these developments from the sidelines. Guantao offered to marry her daughter to Liu Che. Seizing the opportunity, Consort Wang accepted the offer with open arms, secur
History of China
The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty, during the king Wu Ding's reign, recorded as the twenty-first Shang king by the written records of Shang dynasty unearthed. Ancient historical texts such as the Records of the Grand Historian and the Bamboo Annals describe a Xia dynasty before the Shang, but no writing is known from the period, Shang writings do not indicate the existence of the Xia; the Shang ruled in the Yellow River valley, held to be the cradle of Chinese civilization. However, Neolithic civilizations originated at various cultural centers along both the Yellow River and Yangtze River; these Yellow River and Yangtze civilizations arose millennia before the Shang. With thousands of years of continuous history, China is one of the world's oldest civilizations, is regarded as one of the cradles of civilization; the Zhou dynasty supplanted the Shang, introduced the concept of the Mandate of Heaven to justify their rule.
The central Zhou government began to weaken due to external and internal pressures in the 8th century BC, the country splintered into smaller states during the Spring and Autumn period. These states became warred with one another in the following Warring States period. Much of traditional Chinese culture and philosophy first developed during those troubled times. In 221 BC, Qin Shi Huang conquered the various warring states and created for himself the title of Huangdi or "emperor" of the Qin, marking the beginning of imperial China. However, the oppressive government fell soon after his death, was supplanted by the longer-lived Han dynasty. Successive dynasties developed bureaucratic systems that enabled the emperor to control vast territories directly. In the 21 centuries from 206 BC until AD 1912, routine administrative tasks were handled by a special elite of scholar-officials. Young men, well-versed in calligraphy, history and philosophy, were selected through difficult government examinations.
China's last dynasty was the Qing, replaced by the Republic of China in 1912, in the mainland by the People's Republic of China in 1949, resulting in two de facto states claiming to be the legitimate government of all China. Chinese history has alternated between periods of political unity and peace, periods of war and failed statehood – the most recent being the Chinese Civil War. China was dominated by steppe peoples, most of whom were assimilated into the Han Chinese culture and population. Between eras of multiple kingdoms and warlordism, Chinese dynasties have ruled parts or all of China. Traditional culture, influences from other parts of Asia and the Western world, form the basis of the modern culture of China. What is now China was inhabited by Homo erectus more than a million years ago. Recent study shows that the stone tools found at Xiaochangliang site are magnetostratigraphically dated to 1.36 million years ago. The archaeological site of Xihoudu in Shanxi Province has evidence of use of fire by Homo erectus, dated 1.27 million years ago, Homo erectus fossils in China include the Yuanmou Man, the Lantian Man and the Peking Man.
Fossilised teeth of Homo sapiens dating to 125,000–80,000 BC have been discovered in Fuyan Cave in Dao County in Hunan. Evidence of Middle Palaeolithic Levallois technology has been found in the lithic assemblage of Guanyindong Cave site in southwest China, dated to 170,000–80,000 years ago; the Neolithic age in China can be traced back to about 10,000 BC. The earliest evidence of cultivated rice, found by the Yangtze River, is carbon-dated to 8,000 years ago. Early evidence for proto-Chinese millet agriculture is radiocarbon-dated to about 7000 BC. Farming gave rise to the Jiahu culture. At Damaidi in Ningxia, 3,172 cliff carvings dating to 6000–5000 BC have been discovered, "featuring 8,453 individual characters such as the sun, stars and scenes of hunting or grazing"; these pictographs are reputed to be similar to the earliest characters confirmed to be written Chinese. Chinese proto-writing existed in Jiahu around 7000 BC, Dadiwan from 5800 BC to 5400 BC, Damaidi around 6000 BC and Banpo dating from the 5th millennium BC.
Some scholars have suggested. Excavation of a Peiligang culture site in Xinzheng county, found a community that flourished in 5,500 to 4,900 BC, with evidence of agriculture, constructed buildings and burial of the dead. With agriculture came increased population, the ability to store and redistribute crops, the potential to support specialist craftsmen and administrators. In late Neolithic times, the Yellow River valley began to establish itself as a center of Yangshao culture, the first villages were founded. Yangshao culture was superseded by the Longshan culture, centered on the Yellow River from about 3000 BC to 2000 BC. Bronze artifacts have been found at the Majiayao culture site, The Bronze Age is represented at the Lower Xiajiadian culture site in northeast China. Sanxingdui located in what is now Sichuan province is believed to be the site of a major ancient city, of a unknown Bronze Age culture; the site was first discovered in 1929 and re-dis
Second Sino-Japanese War
The Second Sino-Japanese War was a military conflict fought between the Republic of China and the Empire of Japan from July 7, 1937, to September 2, 1945. It began with the Marco Polo Bridge Incident in 1937 in which a dispute between Japanese and Chinese troops escalated into a battle; some sources in the modern People's Republic of China date the beginning of the war to the Japanese invasion of Manchuria in 1931. China fought Japan with aid from the United States. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, the war merged with other conflicts of World War II as a major sector known as the China Burma India Theater; some scholars consider the start of the full-scale Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937 to have been the beginning of World War II. The Second Sino-Japanese War was the largest Asian war in the 20th century, it accounted for the majority of civilian and military casualties in the Pacific War, with between 10 and 25 million Chinese civilians and over 4 million Chinese and Japanese military personnel dying from war-related violence and other causes.
The war was the result of a decades-long Japanese imperialist policy to expand its influence politically and militarily in order to secure access to raw material reserves and labor. The period after World War I brought about increasing stress on the Japanese polity. Leftists sought universal suffrage and greater rights for workers. Increasing textile production from Chinese mills was adversely affecting Japanese production; the Great Depression brought about a large slowdown in exports. All of this contributed to militant nationalism, culminating in the rise to power of a militarist fascist faction; this faction was led at its height by the Hideki Tojo cabinet of the Imperial Rule Assistance Association under edict from Emperor Hirohito. In 1931, the Mukden Incident helped spark the Japanese invasion of Manchuria; the Chinese were defeated and Japan created a new puppet state, Manchukuo. This view has been adopted by the PRC government. From 1931 to 1937, China and Japan continued to skirmish in small, localized engagements, so-called "incidents".
The Japanese scored major victories, capturing both Shanghai and the Chinese capital of Nanjing in 1937. After failing to stop the Japanese in the Battle of Wuhan, the Chinese central government was relocated to Chongqing in the Chinese interior. By 1939, after Chinese victories in Changsha and Guangxi, with Japan's lines of communications stretched deep into the Chinese interior, the war reached a stalemate; the Japanese were unable to defeat the Chinese communist forces in Shaanxi, which waged a campaign of sabotage and guerrilla warfare against the invaders. While Japan ruled the large cities, they lacked sufficient manpower to control China's vast countryside. During this time, Chinese communist forces launched a counter offensive in Central China while Chinese nationalist forces launched a large scale winter offensive. On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, the following day the United States declared war on Japan; the United States began to aid China by airlifting material over the Himalayas after the Allied defeat in Burma that closed the Burma Road.
In 1944 Japan launched Operation Ichi-Go, that conquered Henan and Changsha. However, this failed to bring about the surrender of Chinese forces. In 1945, the Chinese Expeditionary Force resumed its advance in Burma and completed the Ledo Road linking India to China. At the same time, China launched large counteroffensives in South China and retook West Hunan and Guangxi. Despite continuing to occupy part of China's territory, Japan surrendered on September 2, 1945, to Allied forces following the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the Soviet invasion of Japanese-held Manchuria; the remaining Japanese occupation forces formally surrendered on September 9, 1945, with the following International Military Tribunal for the Far East convened on April 29, 1946. At the outcome of the Cairo Conference of November 22–26, 1943, the Allies of World War II decided to restrain and punish the aggression of Japan by restoring all the territories that Japan annexed from China, including Manchuria, Taiwan/Formosa, the Pescadores, to China, to expel Japan from the Korean Peninsula.
China was recognized as one of the Big Four of the Allies during the war and became one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council. In China, the war is most known as the "War of Resistance against Japan", shortened to the "Resistance against Japan" or the "War of Resistance", it was called the "Eight Years' War of Resistance", but in 2017 the Chinese Ministry of Education issued a directive stating that textbooks were to refer to the war as the "Fourteen Years' War of Resistance", reflecting a focus on the broader conflict with Japan going back to 1931. It is referred to as part of the "Global Anti-Fascist War", how World War II is perceived by the Communist Party of China and the PRC government. In Japan, the name "Japan–China War" is most used because of its perceived objectivity; when the invasion of China proper began in earnest in July 1937 near Beijing, the government of Japan used "The North China Incident", with the outbreak of the Battle of Shanghai the following month, it was changed to "The China Incident"
China National Highway 209
China National Highway 209 runs from Hohhot, Inner Mongolia to Beihai, Guangxi province. It is 3,435 kilometres in length and runs south from Huhhot towards Shanxi province, Henan province, Hubei province, Hunan province, ends in Guangxi province. Despite the "National Highway" designation, G209 is not of uniform quality throughout its length. For example, as of 2009, the 20-kilometer section north of Badong is nothing but a poor dirt road. Nonetheless that section is of importance for the national highway system: it is used e.g. by long-distance buses plying the route between Badong and points east. Many parts of the Muyu to Hongping section are not much better. On the other hand, the section from the Shennongjia National Park entry to Muyu to Baishahe Village is part of a upgraded Yichang-Shennongjia Highway. China National Highways Official website of Ministry of Transport of PRC
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
The Qing dynasty the Great Qing, was the last imperial dynasty of China. It was established in 1636, ruled China proper from 1644 to 1912, it was succeeded by the Republic of China. The Qing multi-cultural empire lasted for three centuries and formed the territorial base for modern China, it was the fifth largest empire in world history. The dynasty was founded by the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan in Manchuria. In the late sixteenth century, Nurhaci a Ming Jianzhou Guard vassal, began organizing "Banners", military-social units that included Manchu and Mongol elements. Nurhaci formed the Manchu clans into a unified entity. By 1636, his son Hong Taiji began driving Ming forces out of the Liaodong Peninsula and declared a new dynasty, the Qing. In an unrelated development, peasant rebels led by Li Zicheng conquered the Ming capital, Beijing, in 1644. Rather than serve them, Ming general Wu Sangui made an alliance with the Manchus and opened the Shanhai Pass to the Banner Armies led by the regent Prince Dorgon.
He seized the capital. Resistance from the Southern Ming and the Revolt of the Three Feudatories led by Wu Sangui delayed the Qing conquest of China proper by nearly four decades; the conquest was only completed in 1683 under the Kangxi Emperor reign. The Ten Great Campaigns of the Qianlong Emperor from the 1750s to the 1790s extended Qing control into Inner Asia; the early Qing rulers maintained their Manchu customs, while their title was Emperor, they used "Bogd khaan" when dealing with the Mongols and they were patrons of Tibetan Buddhism. They governed using Confucian styles and institutions of bureaucratic government and retained the imperial examinations to recruit Han Chinese to work under or in parallel with Manchus, they adapted the ideals of the tributary system in dealing with neighboring territories. During the Qianlong Emperor reign the dynasty reached its apogee, but began its initial decline in prosperity and imperial control; the population rose to some 400 millions, but taxes and government revenues were fixed at a low rate guaranteeing eventual fiscal crisis.
Corruption set in, rebels tested government legitimacy, ruling elites failed to change their mindsets in the face of changes in the world system. Following the Opium Wars, European powers imposed "unequal treaties", free trade, extraterritoriality and treaty ports under foreign control; the Taiping Rebellion and the Dungan Revolt in Central Asia led to the deaths of some 20 million people, most of them due to famines caused by war. In spite of these disasters, in the Tongzhi Restoration of the 1860s, Han Chinese elites rallied to the defense of the Confucian order and the Qing rulers; the initial gains in the Self-Strengthening Movement were destroyed in the First Sino-Japanese War of 1895, in which the Qing lost its influence over Korea and the possession of Taiwan. New Armies were organized, but the ambitious Hundred Days' Reform of 1898 was turned back in a coup by the conservative Empress Dowager Cixi; when the Scramble for Concessions by foreign powers triggered the violently anti-foreign "Boxers", the foreign powers invaded China, Cixi declared war on them, leading to defeat and the flight of the Imperial Court to Xi'an.
After agreeing to sign the Boxer Protocol, the government initiated unprecedented fiscal and administrative reforms, including elections, a new legal code, abolition of the examination system. Sun Yat-sen and other revolutionaries competed with constitutional monarchists such as Kang Youwei and Liang Qichao to transform the Qing Empire into a modern nation. After the deaths of Cixi and the Guangxu Emperor in 1908, the hardline Manchu court alienated reformers and local elites alike by obstructing social reform; the Wuchang Uprising on 11 October 1911, led to the Xinhai Revolution. General Yuan Shikai negotiated the abdication of Puyi, the last emperor, on 12 February 1912. Nurhaci declared himself the "Bright Khan" of the Later Jin state in honor both of the 12th–13th century Jurchen Jin dynasty and of his Aisin Gioro clan, his son Hong Taiji renamed the dynasty Great Qing in 1636. There are competing explanations on the meaning of Qīng; the name may have been selected in reaction to the name of the Ming dynasty, which consists of the Chinese characters for "sun" and "moon", both associated with the fire element of the Chinese zodiacal system.
The character Qīng is associated with the water element. This association would justify the Qing conquest as defeat of fire by water; the water imagery of the new name may have had Buddhist overtones of perspicacity and enlightenment and connections with the Bodhisattva Manjusri. The Manchu name daicing, which sounds like a phonetic rendering of Dà Qīng or Dai Ching, may in fact have been derived from a Mongolian word "ᠳᠠᠢᠢᠴᠢᠨ, дайчин" that means "warrior". Daicing gurun may therefore have meant "warrior state", a pun, only intelligible to Manchu and Mongol people. In the part of the dynasty, however the Manchus themselves had forgotten this possible meaning. After conquering "China proper", the Manchus identified their state as "China", referred to it as Dulimbai Gurun in Manchu; the emperors equated the lands of the Qing state as "China" in both the Chinese and Manchu languages, defining China as a multi-ethnic state, rejecting the idea that "China" only meant Han areas. The Qing emperors proclaimed that bo