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History of China

126 B.C.                 Han Dynasty: Chinese explorers forayed into Central Asia. Silk ribbons used for dancing.

2 A.D.                       Population in China: 58 million.

105 A.D.                  Paper and books: Cai Lun developed paper by pounding together ingredients like bamboo, hemp, bark and spreading the pulp flat.

220 A.D. Buddhism spread in China.

400 A.D. Sui Dynasty: Began work on the Grand Canal.

600 A.D. Tang Dynasty: Trade blossomed with the West through the route  across Central Asia called the Silk Road.

690 A.D. Empress Wu: the only woman emperor in Chinese history.

850 A.D. Gunpowder: Alchemists worked with saltpeter for medicinal purposes and mixed it with charcoal and sulfur The explosive properties that resulted were used in warfare to propel arrows and fireworks in Tang Dynasty.

1086 A.D Song Dynasty: New census taken. Population: 108 million.

1200 A.D. Yuan (Mongol) Dynasty: Genghis Khan and later his grandson Kublai khan ruled China. Marco Polo visited

China in 1271. A unified Chinese  theatrical form begins to take shape.

1400 A.D. Ming Dynasty: Culture and art flourished in China.

1600 A.D.. Qin (Manchu) Dynasty: The last dynasty in China. Population: 200 million in 1762 and 395 million in 1830. Peking  Opera emerged from the combination of four regional styles of acting.

1840-1842 The First Opium War: Great Britain flooded the country with opium, causing an addiction crisis. The Qing  Dynasty banned the drug, and a military confrontation resulted. The British force shut down Chinese ports, resulted in a treaty that handed over the control of Hong Kong for 99 years.

1911 Dr. Sun Yi-Hsien (A Western trained M.D.) led the Wuchung uprising, overthrowing the Qin Dynasty and established the Republic of China.


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