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Chinese Emperor
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Chinese Emperor

The emperors of ancient China had tremendous power and responsibility. Called the 'Son of Heaven', he (and once she) was given a divine right to rule over all people but was expected to promote their best interest and not his own. An absolute...
Mandate of Heaven
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Mandate of Heaven

The Mandate of Heaven (Tianming), also known as Heaven's Mandate, was the divine source of authority and the right to rule of China's early kings and then emperors. The ancient god or divine force known as Heaven or Sky selected a particular...
Ancient China
Definition by Joshua J. Mark

Ancient China

Ancient China produced what has become the oldest extant culture in the world. The name 'China' comes from the Sanskrit Cina (derived from the name of the Chinese Qin Dynasty, pronounced 'Chin') which was translated as 'Cin' by the Persians...
Emperor Taizong of Tang
Definition by Emily Mark

Emperor Taizong of Tang

Taizong (birth name, Li-Shimin, l. 598-649 CE, r. 626-649 CE) was the second emperor of the Tang Dynasty and is considered one of the greatest rulers in Chinese history for his reforms of the government and the laws, his religious tolerance...
Ming Dynasty
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Ming Dynasty

The imperial Ming dynasty ruled China from 1368 to 1644. It replaced the Mongol Yuan dynasty which had been in power since the 13th century. Despite challenges from abroad and within, the Ming dynasty oversaw an unprecedented growth in China's...
Tang Dynasty
Definition by Emily Mark

Tang Dynasty

The Tang Dynasty (618-907 CE) was one of the greatest in Imperial Chinese history. It was a golden age of reform and cultural advancement which lay the foundation for policies which are still observed in China today. The second emperor, Taizong...
Yongle Emperor
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Yongle Emperor

The Yongle Emperor (aka Chengzu or Yung Lo, r. 1403-1424 CE) was the third ruler of the Chinese Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 CE). Inheriting a stable state thanks to the work of his father, the Hongwu Emperor (r. 1368-1398 CE), Yongle made lasting...
Hongwu Emperor
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Hongwu Emperor

The Hongwu Emperor (r. 1368-1398 CE) was the founder of the Ming dynasty (1368-1644 CE) which took over from the Mongol Yuan dynasty (1276-1368 CE) as the rulers of China. Born a peasant with the name Zhu Yuanzhang, the future emperor led...
Emperor Gaozu of Tang
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Emperor Gaozu of Tang

Emperor Gaozu (also Kao-tsu, formerly Li Yuan, r. 618-626 CE) was a Sui military commander who led a rebellion against his former masters, seized control of the state, and founded the Tang Dynasty (618-906 CE). Overshadowed in the ancient...
Jianwen Emperor
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Jianwen Emperor

The Jianwen Emperor (r. 1398-1402 CE) was the second ruler of the Chinese Ming dynasty (1368-1644 CE). Following a civil war and Jianwen's mysterious disappearance, his uncle took over the throne and ruled as the Yongle Emperor (r. 1403-1424...
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