The Han dynasty lasted over 400 years whereas the Qin Dynasty only lasted for 15 years. The Han Dynasty lasted over such a long period of time because there were differences in its political governance and the military operations, from the Qin Dynasty. The governance of Han was under the founding emperor of the dynasty, Emperor Gaozu, which was quite loose than how strictly the Qin dynasty ran their government. However, many of the ways, that the Han ruled their nation, was inspired by the Qin Dynasty. Apart from their differences, they shared similarities too. Both the emperors of the dynasties shared the idea of division of the provinces which were run by the government officials. The Han dynasty has a total number of 12 provinces, whereas the Qin Dynasty had a total of 36 provinces. The economy of both the dynasties relied on the trading of goods, but the Qin Dynasty levied high taxes on the local peasants. This ultimately helped its economy, but on the other hand, the Han Dynasty created the Silk Route, with the purpose of trade and commerce and eventually reduced the taxes that were imposed on the common people. Taking the religion perspective of both the dynasties, the Han Dynasty had their beliefs on the ancestry worship but because of Legalism, the Qin Dynasty was not shaped by the religion that
The second dynasty following the Qin Dynasty was the Western Han Dynasty. It lasted from 206 BC to 24 A.D, but still it was known as the first powerful and unified empire. Lui Bang of Han became the first emperor of the Han Dynasty by defeating Xiang Yu of Chu, in the Battle of Gaixia. After becoming the new empire, he was called Gaozu. He took the responsibility for changing the policies and learned the lessons from the Qin Dynasty, which failed. Under his governance people were recruited in the government posts not on the basis of their right or wealth, but on the basis of their abilities. He successfully recovered the economy of the empire, by cutting down the levied taxes and also encouraged the production in the agriculture. Not only this but also he was also responsible for the flourish of the culture. Unfortunately the emperor’s death resulted in the appointment of his son as the inheritor of the throne, but his mother remained in the control of power. This resulted in a revolt between the two, where the empress lost her life. However even after her death, the throne was ascended by the Emperor Wendi and Jingdi, who tried to resume and restore the policies and the lost wealth of China. Han Dynasty was at its most prosperous period during this time under the reign of Emperor Jingdi’s son. It was during this time that the Silk Route was opened. The Western Han Dynasty began to decline under the rule of Emperor Yuan because he could not be strict enough to keep a hold of the administration. The Western Han Dynasty lasted for about two hundred years whose downfall gave rise to the establishment of the Eastern Han Dynasty. it was during this period that China came to be so popular, making the Silk Route to be the central focus of trade connecting China with the western world.
Zhang Qian in the year 138 BC, started a mission in order to build a connection with the tribes to the west. He was sent by Emperor Wu. In his expedition, he was captured by the Xiognu tribe, but Zhang was fortunate enough to escape from them and travelled to West. He reached Afghanistan then, which was then known as Bactria and was under the administration of the Greeks. After a long span of thirteen hours, Zhang Qian went back to his Emperor and narrated to him, what he had seen there. Bamboo and textiles had been brought from a kingdom in Afghanistan called Shendu. Zhang then proposed an idea to the emperor that he had mapped out a route through which an expedition could be sent back to Bactria. This route then gradually and eventually came to be known as the Silk Route and developed into an international trade route between China and the Mediterranean. China Silk had been imported more through this road, which gave this route the name of “Silk Route”. At present the route is an important channel for material exchange and it connects the circulation of goods between the east and the west. It also it plays a great role in the cultural exchange. It also helped in the establishment of Chinese culture and Chinese history in the world. This road did not only just serve as a trade link between China and other countries, but also achieved mutual benefit and reciprocity , building a strong base for future cooperation.
The beginning of the Eastern Han Dynasty was marked by the restoration of the Han Dynasty in 25 AD, with Liu Xiu, proclaiming himself to be the Emperor. During Wang Mang’s reign, the emperor of the Xin Dynasty, Liu Xiu and his elder brother decided to rise up against Wand Mang, by joining the Green Woodsmen Army. Eventually he became the leader of this army and united the other peasant armies. Once he became the emperor, all the policies that was previously prevalent, was altered and changed and he proved himself to be a devotee of the country and its unity. The Eastern Han Period marked the development of both the culture and the economy of the empire. The Eastern Han Dynasty had superseded the Western Han Period by its economic, cultural and scientific advancement. It was during this period that the paper was invented. However, during the end of the Eastern Han Period, the emperors lost control of the empire, and this weakened the dynasty. Different factions rose to rebellion and finally the Han Dynasty fell , which resulted in the Three Kingdom Period
The Han Dynasty in China contributed to the world some of the greatest inventions during its time. Out of them, the process of making paper was one of the most important invention of this Dynasty. Under the emperor of the Han Dynasty, Ho-Ti, Ts’ai Lun, a government official started the first paper-making industry. The paper was traditionally invented in the beginning of the 2nd century BC. It was one of the greatest and earliest invention of ancient China. Since the paper was cheaper and convenient than bamboo or silk or wood, it was used to spread literature and literacy. Paper was also used in packaging purposes. Paper was the most important invention in China, since it was also used to pay taxes and tributes to the state during 618 BC. The first paper was prepared from rags. Eventually the process involve the use of the plant materials like the barks of the trees, especially mulberry trees, hemp as well as bamboo. Ts’ai Lun first made his paper by mixing the finely chopped barks of the mulberry trees and the rags with water, making a pulp and then mashing it flat. It was then brought out of the water and dried hard in the sun. The importance of paper was acknowledged subsequently and the mass production of paper had begun in the government factories. Even after the first paper industry began working in China, it took another thousand years for the paper to reach all over Europe and Asia.
The Battle of Red Cliffs, which took place around 208 AD, was also known as the Battle of Chibi. The battle was fought at the end of the Han Dynasty, which was termed as the largest naval battle in history. The allied forces from the Southern Warlords which included Liu Bei from the kingdom of Shu and Sun Quan from the Kingdom of Wu won against the northern warlord Cao Cao from the Kingdom of Wei. This battle marked the end of the Han Dynasty. The foundation of the Thee Kingdoms Period had been the aftermath of this Battle of Red Cliff. The period of the Three Kingdoms basically refer to the period between the foundation of the state of Wei in 220 AD and the conquest of the state of Wu, in 280 AD by the Jin Dynasty. The period in between, was marked by a stable military arrangement between the three rival states of Wei, Shu and Wu. However the later part of the period was marked by the conquest of
Shu by Wei, followed by the usurpation of Wei, and eventually the downfall of Wu by the Jin Dynasty. The division of the Three Kingdoms had a great impact over the economy and there was a massive destruction of the financial stability and the wastage of the farmland.
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