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Chinese Silk Fan

Local Fisherman of the Li River, Guilin. The Cormorant's are trained birds used for fishing! They can count up to 7 fish, after which time they will not dive again unless fed!

Zhaoqing at Night - Seen from 7-Stars Lake and Crags

Farmer Collecting Firewood - Guilin
Chinese History
Xia Empire
Xia Empire (2, 100 to 1, 600 BC; alt: 4, 200 to 1, 600 BC)
The Xia period marked an evolutionary stage between the post neolithic cultures and the typical Chinese urban civilization of the Shang dynasty.

Map: Xia Empire

Reproduced under GNU licence criteria + many thanks to Wikipedia. Original courtesy of Zhou Yi C 2004

The Xia Empire was very small by today’s Global standards, but was huge for the times. It would also have had contemporaries vying for position. What is notable, is that it existed in it’s own right about 2, 100 years ago, and traded with outsiders such as Ancient Egypt, Mediterranean cultures, and the near East. This also implies existing Trade links with India and other Asian cultures

Historians disagree on whether this was one dynasty, or several convergent and contemporary kingdoms. There is much debate about the Xia Kingdom, but what is agreed by all is the use of Bronze for daily use (cups) and pottery markings also indicate the first forms writing. Note: this is ‘pottery’, and not ‘Porcelain’. Some evidence suggests the Xia Empire began much earlier, such as 2, 500 BC; but especially 4, 200 BC, which is supported via outside sources and early trade records found in other contemporary civilizations

1. Preceded by King Shun, who handed power down to a nominated ‘worthy successor’ = King Yu (Da Yu)
2. Created by King Yu The Great, who handed power down by Birthright
3. Successor his son, Qi
4. Pottery
5. Oracle Bones made of either bones or tortoiseshell, with character inscriptions in ancient script
6. Language markings on pottery
7. Canals built to eliminate flooding
8 . Bronze used for everyday items, military weapons, with a high level of refinement, making the Xia the World's foremost exponents of Bronze works
Jade engravings, jewellery and ornaments
9 . Currency: Cowries, Coins
10 . Capital: Yangcheng, and probably later at Yanshi, Henan Province (On the Yellow River); but see Erlitou Culture also
11. History suggests that the Xia and Erlitou were contemporaneous cultures, primarily based on opposing banks of the Yellow River, plus associated hinterlands. This gets complex, so simply read that: they fought over regional dominance from time to time, and the Xia eventually conquered and integrated the Erlitou into their society
12. War followed by integration of the populace is a common theme running throughout Chinese history, even into the 20th Century
13. After the dynasty was overthrown by the Shang dynasty, some remnants continued as an independent state in Henan until 445 BC, and were known as the Qi Kingdom
14. Later they reappear in Chinese history; as do the Yue, who also claim to be descendants of Xia
This information is as supplied by Wikipedia, as dated March 2009 or later, and/or other reliable sources.

Maps (Unless stated otherwise) are provided in association with Thomas Lessman

Please check this information yourself as it may alter without notice, and whilst we try our best to ensure it is correct, please do not hold us responsible for any errors - this is intended as a simple guide only
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