Yuan China is part of the largest empire in history
Mongol Conquest of China
Temuujin called Genghis Khan or Great King
united the Mongol tribes
conquered much of Asia including N. China
His grandson, Kublai Khan founded Yuan dynasty
1276 captured the capital of the Southern Song Dynasty
total area of the Yuan was over 4.6 million square miles.
Mongols chose not to impose their own pastoral lifestyle, social structure, or religion on the Chines
Mongols use Chinese system for ruling but didn't trust the Chinese to rule
Yuan government had few Chinese but many Mongols and wise foreigners.
The cultural gap resulted in lighter government than that of previous empires, punishments were much less severe.
based on agriculture.
food output increased
excessive spending severely depleted China economically. Canals and palaces were built,
peasants supplied more tax money and to leave their homes to build them.
Campaigns were also launched against Japan which were not successful and destroyed many Chinese ships.
External trade with foreign countries was greatly encouraged was made very difficult for the native Chinese since Mongols controlled the trade routes.
Travel outside of China for commercial reasons was made very difficult.
Foreign merchants, however, were able to trade within China and were given privileges by the Yuan.
The Mongols took over a rich China and less than one hundred years later left an impoverished nation.
Waterwheel and Ironworks
Open Trade with the World
Rulers of the Yuan Dynasty adopted an open policy to develop the economy. On the one hand, more ports in the coastal areas were opened for goods transport; on the other hand, foreign goods were welcomed to enter the domestic market. Under this policy, great amount of spices and medical materials were imported from Arabia, Persia and India while China's silk and porcelain in large number were exported to Europe
Under this policy, great amount of spices and medical materials were imported from Arabia, Persia and India while China's silk and porcelain in large number were exported to Europe.
The unprecedented prosperity of the marine Silk Road became the most direct momentum of the domestic economical development hence was the highlight of the social economy of the Yuan Dynasty.
Cotton and Textile Industry
cotton planting became more and more popular in the southern areas of China, the development of the textile industry was greatly stimulated and reached a fairly advanced level.
Mongolian Buddhism as well as the traditional Chinese religion of Taoism grow while Confucianism declines since it represented Chinese nobility's power
The Mongols were culturally very different from the Chinese.
This made ruling them very difficult. different languages
Clothing styles radically different
many different customs. The Chinese nobility were better educated than the Mongol invaders and the best scholars refused to teach in government schools, rather they founded private academies. The Mongols did not succeed in censoring Chinese literature and drama or in providing intellectual or cultural leadership .
Four Class System
a legal caste system in the Yuan Dynasty
consolidate the ruling status of the Mongolians
different treatment in political, legal and military affairs.
First, the real power to Mongolian people
Han people and Southerners. These two classes were forbidden to possess any weapon or raise any dogs or eagles.
national policy of political oppression and ethnic division.
diplomatic activities with foreign countries were quite frequent with
Italian merchant Marco Polo was a successful cultural transmitter who wrote the historic travel notes, The Travels of Marco Polo, informing the West about China.
the Arabic numbers were introduced to China during the Yuan Dynasty
traditional Chinese medicine and pharmacy improved
Arabic pharmacies and hospitals first introduced to China
major cultural achievements were the development of drama and the novel and the increased use of the written vernacular
Chinese nobility were not allowed to be involved in government, they were free to pursue art and literature.
The greatest advances in literature were in the forms of theatre and opera. ( Yuan drama)
The theatre was a favorite form of entertainment for the emperors and for wealthy families.
Educated people began to write librettos for the operas, however they wrote under pseudonyms because playwriting was not an occupation acceptable for scholars. The Story of Lute, The Story of the Orphan of Chao,
communications between China and Arabia and Persia had been very intensive and widespread
Marco Polo gave his description of China. It thus follows that he as a foreigner experienced a much friendlier China than the native Chinese themselves
three churches were built in the capital Dadu (now Beijing)
Christian New Testament was translated into Mongolian.
During the reign of Emperor Shundi of Yuan, an official mission dispatched to Rome was warmly welcomed by the Pope.
Chinese traveler named Wang Dayuan the Arabian Sea, the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. I His travelogue, Daoyi Zhilue, described Arabian society in almost all respects
The Fall of the Yuan and the Rise of the Ming
Yuan court became corrupt
years of famine broke out
1367, the rebel army led by Zhu Yuanzhang captured the Yuan capital, ending the ever mighty Yuan Dynasty.
the unification of North and South China
more frequent communication with foreign countries
Shamanism and Totemism. The followers of Shamanism believed in the existence of Jinn.
Shamans elect leaders and affairs of war and peace.
Totemism two principal totems - 'wolf totem' and 'deer totem' worshiped by the Mongolians. In the Mongolians' heart, wolf was their grandfather while deer was their grandmother. Genghis Khan always ordered that wolves and deer should be freed if caught during hunting.
Mongolians integrate religions from other ethnic minorities. Tibetan Buddhism became the dominant religion of the Yuan Dynasty. Ever since Tibetan Buddhism came to the Mongol area, it was greatly advocated by generations of Khans. During the reign of Emperor Chengzong of Yuan, a great many Buddhist sutras were translated from Tibetan into Mongolian, which further contributed to the development of Tibetan Buddhism in the Yuan Dynasty