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Chapter 19 The Geography and Early Settlement of China Ancient China Geography Shang and Zhou Dynasties How did geography affect life in ancient China? China’s Geography The Geography of Outer China (Western and Northern China) The Geography of Inner China (Southeastern China) Tibet-Qinghai Plateau The Taklimakan Desert and The Gobi Desert The Manchurian Plain The North China Plain The Chang Jiang Basins Early Settlement in Ancient China and Ancient China’s Isolation Different Regions, Different Ways of Life How did geography affect life in ancient China? • Archaeologists have found remains of what may be the first inhabitants of China. These hunter-gatherers lived in caves more than 500,000 years ago. Later, farmers established the first permanent settlements on the North China Plain, near the Huang He, or Yellow River. Harsh geography and vast distances isolated these early inhabitants. • Because of a lack of farmland, most settlers in Outer China were nomads and herders. In Inner China, people farmed and raised animals in permanent settlements. Farmers in Chang Jiang Basins grew rice.