Mongols created the worlds largest land empire in central Asia. It was a series of nomadic people divided into separate clans each run by a chief called a khan. These khan’s were selected through leadership and military skills. These clans of Mongols eventually conquered China.
Jan 1, 1200
Mongols on the rise
The Mongols were one of the strongest and most dominant military forces in history. They were up to ten thousand strong in many divisions of their military. Thousands of soldiers moved over the land dominating and conquering with their unsurpassed brutality, weaponry, and military tactics.
Jan 1, 1206
The Universal Ruler
Temujin was a khan who began overpowering the other khans declaring himself, Genghis Khan meaning “Universal Ruler”.
Jan 1, 1207
Ghenghis Khans rampage
Once the clans were united, Genghis Khan began to build an empire. The empire was created through acquisition of battle, defeating and overthrowing. Relying on brutality and terror they killed any who resisted and burned villages leading to many surrendering their land without even a fight. They were such great warriors because they mastered the art of siege warfare. 1207-1227. Siege warfare: A military blockade of a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by attrition or assault.
Jan 1, 1227
Genghis Khan dies
Genghis Kahn died leaving the task of conquering the world to his sons. The empire at the time was divided into four khanates; each one was ruled by one of Genghis Khan’s heirs. The “Great Khan” ruled over the entire empire. It is also known that the Black Death spread from asia to the Middle East and Europe around this time. Black Death: The great epidemic of a bubonic plague that killed a large part of Europe (1300-1400).
Jan 1, 1236
Batu and the Golden Horde
Genghis Khan’s grandson, Batu, led the Golden Horde in conquering Russia. This lead to the storming of Poland and Hungary. The Golden Horde: The Tartar and Mongol army, led by descendants of Genghis Khan, that overran Asia and parts of eastern Europe in the 13th century.
Jan 1, 1260
Kublai Khan comes into power
Kublai khan became the Great Khan, maintaining power over the Khanate of the Great Khan.
Jan 1, 1260
Kublai Khans rule
Kublai Khan ruled China. Though the Chinese regarded him as a barbarian, he united China. This was a feat that had not been done for over 300 years. He made advances in arts and science as well as being known for extending the Grand Canal. His rule extended from 1260 up unitl his death in 1294.
Jan 1, 1278
Marco Polos travels around China
Marco Polo traveled around China on Missions that would later be immortalized in books that would become very popular in Europe and create huge interest from Europeans towards China. Marco polos travels around China extended from when he arrived in 1278 and when he went back to Europe in 1295.
Jan 1, 1278
Marco Polo in China
Marco Polo and father traveled to China. Kublai Khan really liked Marco and sent him on many missions. Marco Polo regarded Kublai Khan as a great and Noble ruler.
Jan 1, 1279
The Yuan Dynasty begins
Kublai khan completed the conquest of China by defeating the final Song ruler. Kublai Khan became emperor of China, calling it the Yuan Dynasty and for the first time, China was ruled by a foreigner. This was made possible because the resistance of the Song Dynasty ended when their last ruler died in 1279. Song Dynasty: The imperial dynasty of China from 960 to 1279; noted for art and literature and philosophy.
Jan 1, 1294
Kublai Khan dies
Kublai khan died. Conflict over who would take his place ensued and weak rulers took over.
Jan 1, 1294
The Yuan Decline
Weak rulers combined with natural disasters such as floods as well as overtaxation seriously weakened the Yuan kingdom. This gave birth to many Chinese rebels forces seeking to overturn the Yuan Dynasty. The Yuan dynasty declined from 1294 to 1368 when Zhu Yuanzhang and his rebel army took over. The Yuan Dynasty declined even further when the storms of Kamikazes kept them from conquering the islands of Japan. Kamikaze: Suicide bombers. In Japanese, the word Kamikaze means "divine wind".
Jan 1, 1295
Marco Polos return to Venice
Marco Polo left China, was captured, sent to prison and a fellow inmate wrote a very popular book about him and his adventures in China.
Jan 1, 1368
The birth of the Ming Dynasty
A rebel army, lead by peasant Zhu Yuanzhang, defeated the Mongols. The Mongols escaped to Manchuria and Zhu Yuanzhang took over rule of China calling his rule the Ming Dynasty and giving himself the title Hongwu which means “vastly martial”.
Jan 1, 1368
The Ming Dynasty
The duration of the Ming Dynasty. During this time China took over Korea, Mongolia and parts of Asia. The Ming Dynasty lasted from 1368 to 1644
Jan 1, 1368
Hongwu of the Ming Dynasty
Zhu Yuanzhang ruled China uner the name Hongwu. He restored Chinese culture while diminishing Mongol influence. He instilled Confucianism, eliminated corruption, improved agriculture and trade. He also reduced taxes therefore improving the economy and stability of china. He also increased his own power as an emperor by decreasing other positions of power and killing any one who challenged his authority.
Jan 1, 1398
Hongwu died, leaving his son, Yonglo, to become emperor.
Jan 1, 1402
Yonglo and The Forbidden City
Yonglo rules China in the Ming dynasty. He moved the capitol to Beijing. He built “The Forbidden City”. This was a city within the city of Beijing. It had high walls and very limited access. 1402-1424. The Forbidden City: An area of Beijing, China, that contains the former imperial palaces, to which entry was forbidden to all except imperial family members.
Jan 1, 1405
Yonglo financed seven overseas exploration by Zheng He. He explored with up to 300 ships as large as 400 feet long. These fleets of ships were called "Junks". The collection of ships included treasure and trading ships. The ships sailed around the Indian ocean as fas as Africa giving gifts from China and receiving gifts to bring back for the emperor. 1405-1433. Junks: Large fleets of ships sent by Zheng He.
Jan 1, 1500
The Ming Dynasty self quarantine.
European missionaries and traders came to China. In an effort to maintain China’s culture, the Ming dynasty began to close China off from the rest of the world. The Ming dynasty strictly limited all trade and ended foreign exploration. Trade continued to be prevalent along the coast as restrictions were difficult to carryout.
Jan 1, 1500
The Ming Dyanstys increasing threat.
China gained new threats from Northern Mongols and the Great Wall of China was repaired and rebuilt. Most of the wall was built during the Ming Dynasty. The Great Wall of China: A fortified wall in northern China, extending some 1,500 miles (2,400 km) from Kansu province to the Yellow Sea north of Beijing.
Jan 1, 1500
The Ming Dynastys growing economy
Farming and irrigation combined with European crops such as corn and sweet potatoes created prosperity. Abundant food led to population growth as well as an increase in manufacturing and industry. As a result, Chinese silk was in great demand in Europe.
Jan 1, 1580
The Ming Dynastys decline
Ming dynasty diminished due to weak rule, high taxes going to defense measures, and crop failure leading to starvation and rebellion. The decline ocurred between the late 1500s and the early 1600s.
Matteo Riccis European influence
An Italian Priest named Matteo Ricci became highly respected by the Ming court because he taught them European Math and science.
The birth of the Qing Dynasty
Manchu conquered Beijing. The emperor committed suicide to evade capture and the Manchu created the Qing dynasty. A Manchurian dynasty with a Chinese name. This Dynasty had strict policies. For example, men were required to wear their hair in a queue. Queue: A braid of hair worn hanging down behind.
The last imperial rule
The Qing dynasty ruled China as the last imperial rule. At this time China flourished and grew to the largest it had ever been. The Manchu gained Chinese acceptance by respecting Chinese culture and customs and equally sharing government positions as well as keeping much of the government structure. The qing dynasty began in 1644 and ended in 1911.
Emperor Kangxi ruled Qing Dynasty. He reduced taxes for the poor, and took parts of central Asia. He encouraged science and art and accepted educated European Jesuit priests. 1661-1772
Qianlong, Kangxi’s grandson, ruled Qing. During his rule, China conquered Taiwan, Mongolia and Tibet. The Economy and population flourished with foreign trade, transportation systems, and improved agriculture.1736-1796
George Macartneys visit to China
Lord George Macartney, visited China to discuss trade. The Chinese thought that the European goods were not as good as the Chinese product and they embarrassed and banished him. Not only that, but they forced Macartney to show respect to Emperor Qianlong by kowtowing. Kowtowing: kneeling in front of the emperor and touching his forehead to the ground nine times.