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WHI: SOL 3a-e
China
Geographic Features
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Bay of Bengal
South China Sea
East China Sea
Pacific Ocean
Huang He River
Yangzi River
Xi River
Gobi Desert
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Himalaya Mountains
Yellow Sea
Anyang
China
Mongolia
India
Russia
Beginnings
• China began along the Huang He River valley
• Huang He got its name from loess or fine,
windblown yellow soil (Yellow River)
• Also known as “River of Sorrows” due to the
severe flooding
• Isolation due to geographic features
• Most cities and people are located along the
Eastern shore
Xia Dynasty
• Led by Yu the Great
• Yu led the people in working to build canals in
order to control the flooding of the Yellow River
• Passed power to his son Qi, which began the
system of dynastic rule or the Hereditary System
• Began a period of family or clan control
Shang Dynasty
• 1766 b.c. -1122 b.c. corner of northern China
• Anyang-capital city
• Political: Kings were the head of all clans,
claiming a common ancestor
• Kings only controlled small areas
• Social:Hierarchy
– Royals
– Noble Warriors
– Artisans and Merchants
– Peasants
Shang Dynasty
• Religious: oracle bones
• A question is carved in a bones or shells, then
exposed to heat until it cracked, the cracks
were then interpreted as an answer from the
gods
Zhou Dynasty
• 1122 b.c.-corrupt king of Shang was overthrown,
established the Zhou dynasty
• Political: Zhou claimed “Mandate of Heaven” or a
divine right to rule
• This led into the belief of the dynastic cycle
• Used to explain the rise and fall of dynasties
Zhou Dynasty
• Social: Feudalism
• Economic: growth of economy, ironworking,
farming became more productive (surplus)
• Use of money, increased trade
• Religious: polytheistic, ancestor prayer and
offerings