Chinese Dynasties Timeline


The Shang Dynasty

1766 BCE - 1122 BCE

The Shang Dynasty has contributed to the Chinese Culture today. The Shang Dynasty ruled in city-states and one capital. The capital did not always stay in the same place, as power shifted so did the capital. They were a bronze age people and they left China a lot of written records. They left them "oracle bones" that were said to predict the future. ( The bones contain the names of the kings of the Shang Dynasty. One of the biggest contributions to China today is that the Shang Dynasty developed pictographic language.(

The Zhou Dynasty

1122 BCE - 256 BCE

The Zhou Dynasty has been a contributor to Chinese culture. China's first workings of hydraulic engineering were in the Zhou Dynasty. They worked on it for the purpose of aiding irrigation of crops. ( The Zhou also incorporated a lot of work in their bronze. They made weapons and art out of bronze. ( Also, because of the massive size of the Zhou Dynasty the Zhou leaders could not hold it with their state of communication. There is where they first used different leaders for different areas of their land. (

The Qin Dynasty

221 BCE - 206 BCE

The Qin Dynasty was one of the most important dynasties in China's history. In this Dynasty the first emperor was appointed and the nation was named China after the Qin. The first emperor unified china and gave standards to writing, weights, and measurements. It is in this dynasty that the Great Wall of China was built. It posed great financial problems and heavy losses of human life in the making. ( The dynasty ended as the emperor died.

The Han Dynasty

206 BCE - 9 AD

The Han Dynasty was the longest dynasty in the imperial age. One of the biggest accomplishments of this dynasty is the establishment of Confucianism instead of Legalism. That changed the way the empire was run. It changed the way that jobs were established. Now the jobs were appointed on merit not competence.
After Emperor Wu Ti went into power he re-established legalism so taxes were reinstated making the furious farmers revolt. (

The Sui Dynasty

589 AD - 618 AD

0The Sui Dynasty reunited China in 589. This dynasty re-established the government and religion. Taoism and Buddhism were accepted and they flourished. The Great Wall of China was rebuilt at the cost of human life and a canal system now known as the Grand Canal, was made. The dynasty was torn down when it suffered losses in Northern Korea and rebels took over the government. (

The Tang Dynasty

618 AD - 907 AD

In the Tang Dynasty emerged the first woman empress, Wu Zetian. In 589 the Tang dynasty created toilet paper. The person who made it was a scholar named Yan Zhitui. In this dynasty the printing of books for cultural unity was started. Also, in this dynasty the Tang emperor started persecuting all the Buddhists. (

The Sung Dynasty

960 - 1279

The Sung Dynasty contributed many things to Chinese life now. They had the idea of centralizing the government on the capital. The Sung Dynasty were famous in military discoveries, they made advances in gunpowder warfare such as flame throwers, grenades, and landmines. Also they invented a clock tower with the worlds first endless power-transmitting chain drive. (,

The Yuan Dynasty

1279 - 1368

The Yuan Dynasty had certain impact on China today. The Yuan created a hand cannon, therefore the first hand held fire arm. They also created porcelain which is now used worldwide as plates, teacups, and mugs. They also wrote the first medical medical literature and exported it to the western world. (

The Ming Dynasty

1368 - 1644

The Ming Dynasty contributed to China today. The Ming made the study of triangles, or trigonometry. They worked a lot with ceramic art and porcelain. They invented snorkeling gear for pearl divers, as they researched nautical engineering. (

The Qing Dynasty

1644 - 1912

The Qing Dynasty hosted one of the most populated area in the world. In this time period the Qing control weakened and prosperity diminished. China suffered economic stagnation and the population grew substantially, because of this food supply was scarce. (

Mao Zedong

1893 - 1976

Mao Zedong was the communist leader of the PRC(People's Republic of China). This man set up a trade embargo with the U.S. which lasted until Nixon abolished it. Because of the high death tolls during his rule he is compared to Hitler and Stalin with deaths greater than both of theirs. (

Deng Xiaoping

1904 - 1997

Deng Xiaoping did many things in his lifetime. For one he maintained the Communist Party of China. His industrialization policies were one of the most successful in human history. He is credited with China's success in foreign affairs. (

The Republic of China(Taiwan)


After WW2 the Republic of China took control of the Japanese islands of Taiwan and Penghu. The PRC(People's Republic of China) does not consider ROC(Republic Of China) as a state and want to unify it with the mainland. Today ROC considers itself a separate nation. (