Chinas First Empire - Qin Dynasty


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The Qin Dynasty which emerged victorious over the 6 other major Kingdoms during “The Warring States” period in China was the first empire that unified what is now roughly modern China. More importantly, it standardized much of the concepts that affected daily life for its citizens, such as money, written language, roads, weights, and measures, and created the basis for the future Chinese role of emperors and the organization of the political structure that continued in its basic form until 1911. It also is credited with some of the greatest public works projects in human history such as the beginning of the Great Wall of China, canal building and irrigation projects, mass production techniques, the Terracotta Warriors of Xian, and a massive mausoleum project for the emperor’s body after death.

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Chinas First Empire - Qin Dynasty

  1. 1.  Enjoy the remake of Lady GaGa song into song about Qin Dynasty!  lo
  2. 2. QIN DYNASTY 221 – 207 B.C.E.
  3. 3.  476 BC - 221 BC  7 Kingdoms sought dominance of “Middle Kingdom” which is large area of modern China  Wall building to defend kingdoms began  Similar political structure to Europe’s Feudalism  Qin finally defeated other 6 kingdoms  Qin Dynasty 1st unified China Empire
  4. 4.  Expansion of mounted cavalry troops  Foot soldiers instead of chariot battling nobles  1 million man army  Mass production of iron weaponry  Increased irrigation projects fed army  Massive population boom  Controlled knowledge  Defeated northern kingdoms THEN Chu  Fought Chu 238-223 BCE – 15 years!
  5. 5. Watch the video and note the examples of differences in how the Qin conducted warfare during the Warring States period  qV901J5Pw4
  6. 6. Ying Zhang 256-210 BCE  13 years old at start  22 year old seized total power  Qin Shihuang Di means “First Emperor of Qin”  Tyrannt  Standardization  Sought immortallity 
  7. 7.  Currency  Weights  Measurements  Written Language  Political structure  Military  Public works – Great Wall, Tomb, Canals  Width of roads – transportation increased  Wagon axle size
  8. 8.  Ban Liang Coin  Circular coin with square center cut out
  9. 9. Qinzhuan
  10. 10.  Legalism – Against Daoism & Confucius  Centralized control  Reduced feudal control  Controlled education  Book burning  460 scholars buried alive
  11. 11.  Philosophy that suggested that all work and production should be focused for the advantage of the State. The individual was of little importance. It was directly opposed to Daoism, and did not share much of the idealism or moderation of Confucian philosophy. It also called for a strong military. It is similar to the 20th century governing style of Fascism (Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Fascist Spain during World War II)
  12. 12.  Over 1 million workers  Stamped earth reinforced by reeds  Connected existing walls
  13. 13.  720,000 workers  Terracotta Warriors  Mausoleum  Rivers of mercury  Scale model of country  36 years to construct  Finished 210 BCE
  14. 14. What profession do you want to have when you grow up What do you think you will be doing in 4 years?
  15. 15.  Qin Dynasty was short lived, but it set the standard for dynasties to follow. It was overthrown by a peasant revolt which also became a common vehicle for change to future dynasties! It did unify the country for the first time and standardized much of everyday life’s important tools and aspects for the Chinese people!
  16. 16.  The Qin Dynasty was the first unified China that represented most of what is now China.  The Qin were responsible for the centralization of power of the emperor.  The Qin is still remembered for its bookburnings and anti-intellectual repression.  The Qin STANDARDIZED much of the organizing elements of everyday life.  The Qin tried to control EVERY aspect of its citizen’s lives.
  17. 17. Qin Qin Shihuang Di Great Wall of China Terracotta Warriors Dynasty Legalism