All previous genera tions were included in the fundamental unit.
The ancestors of the Chinese believed they had an interest in the fortunes of living family members, so they consulted, appeased, and venerated them.
The ancestors cult that provided a kind of immortality to the deceased must be maintained by each generation.
By the imperial era independent nuclear families were the norm, but earlier times multiple generations and groups of families lived together.
The hierarchy within the family was headed by the oldest male.
People saw themselves as part of an interdependent unit rather than as individual agents based on their gender, age, and relationship to other family members.
Some children were taken to court by their parents for disobedience after they had grown up.
The basic values of Chinese society are loyalty, obedient to authority, respect for elders and ancestors, and concern for honor and appropriate conduct.
The hierarchy in the state mirrored the hierarchy in the family, and these same attitudes carried over into the relationship between individuals and the state.
She must submit to her parents when she is young.
She must submit to her husband after marriage.
A woman's status depended on her location in various social institutions.
Women of the royal family could be influential political figures.
A bride who had been arranged by her parents would go to live with her husband's family in order to prove herself.
Mothers-in-law had authority over their sons' wives, and mothers, sisters, and wives competed to get a larger share of the family's resources.
She was instructing her proper behavior.
She makes a plea for the education of girls and encourages husbands to respect and not beat their wives.
The quality of people's lives were shaped by the contexts in which they lived.
It is protected by a ring of hills and has access to the fertile plain.
The main features of Chang'an were a wall of earth and brick.
There was a plan in place for part of the city.
In the cities and towns, there are tated thoroughfares running north and south.
The palaces, administrative offices, barracks, and storehouses of the Han Empire were protected by high that sprang up throughout the walls.
There were many temples and marketplaces around the civic center.
Between 10 and 30 percent of the population lived in urban centers when Chang'an was a model of urban planning.
Han literature describes the activities taking place in the palace complexes, public areas, and residential streets.
The excesses of the elite were criticized by moralizing writers.
Living in multistory houses, wearing fine silks, traveling in ornate horse-drawn carriages, well-to-do officials and merchants devoted their leisure time to art and literature, and various entertainments.
The class of prosperous families in China led comfortable lives.
The granting of govern in wealth below the rural ment jobs on the basis of performance on the exams theoretically should have given everyone an aristocracy, but in reality the sons of the gentry had distinct advantages in obtaining the necessary education.
The scholar-officials became privileged administrative personnel.
The Han depended on local officials for their day-to-day administration.
They collected taxes, regulated the army and labor projects, provided protection, and settled disputes.
The ancient Chinese society viewed merchants with suspicion, accusing them of greedily driving government more efficient prices up through speculation and being parasites who lived off the work of others.
Advisers to the emperors blamed merchants for the economic ills of China and proposed a harsh past.
gentry also includes banning them and their children from holding government posts.
Poems written by soldiers complain of rough conditions in the camps, tyrannical officers, and the dangers of confrontations with enemy forces, but above all they are homesick, missing and worrying about aged parents and vulnerable wives and children.
The Han period was rich in intellectual developments, thanks to the relative prosperity of the era, the growth of urban centers, and state support of scholars.
In their leisure time scholar officials read and write in a wide range of genres, including poetry, philosophy, history, and technical subjects.
Since the Zhou period, the Chinese have been preserving historical records.
Sima Qian, the "chief astrologer" of Emperor Wu, created an organizational framework that became the standard for subsequent historical writing and he sought the causes of events.
Sima's monumental history, covering 2,500 years from legendary early emperors to his own time, was organized in a very different way from Western historical writing.
The book was divided into five parts, including biographies of important individuals and groups, a chart of historical events, and essays on special topics such as the calendar, astrology, and religious ceremonies.
The same event may be narrated in more than one section, sometimes in a different way, inviting the reader to compare and interpret the differences.
Sima may have used this approach to offer veiled interpretations of past and present.
The advantage of being employed by the government in Han China was offset by the disadvantage of being able to criticize that government.
There were advances in technology.
Astronomy was aided by widespread belief in astrology.
The watermill, which turned a grindstone with the power of running water, was used in China before it appeared in Europe.
European horses pull heavier loads than Chinese horses.
The Chinese made paper as early as the second century b.c.e., replacing the bamboo strips of earlier eras.
Horse breeding techniques to supply the cavalry and a reliable crossbow Trigger were among the improvements in military technology.
Thousands of miles of roads were built by the Qin and Han to connect parts of the empire and move armies quickly.
They built canals to connect the river systems of northern and southern China.
An early inventor created a seismometer that could register earthquakes and show where the event took place.
There was a wide range of beliefs in Chinese religion.
The Chi nese believed in nature.
People believed in spirits and ghosts.
The shrines to the lords of rain, winds, and soil were maintained by the state.
The connection between religion and power was shown in an essay by Sima Qian.
A number of mystical and magical practices, including the art of turning common materials into precious metals such as gold, became popular with the common people, as evidenced by the 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846 888-666-1846
The popular uprisings of the last decades of the Han dynasty were led by charismatic Daoist teachers because they rejected the hierarchy and rules of the Confucian elite classes.
In the fifth century b.c.e., it originated in northern India.
Confucianism and the emphasis on severing attachment to material goods and pleasures were both found to be in line with Chinese values.
The Chinese were initially put off by Buddhist practices.
Buddhist monks shaved off their hair and abstained from sex and procreation of children in order to live in monasteries, which was repugnant to traditional Chinese values.
After the fall of the Han, Buddhism gained acceptance and was changed to fit the Chinese context.
There was a break in the long sequence of Han rulers.
Large numbers of deaths and economic losses were caused by a flood that changed the course of the Yellow River.
The Han family and other elements of the elite resisted their loss of status and property, as well as the popular uprising of the "Red Eyebrows."
A member of the Han royal family was installed as emperor after Mang was killed in his palace.
The capital was moved east in 25 c.e.
Weak leadership and court intrigue plagued the imperial court, with royal spouses and their families jockeying for power behind immature or ineffectual monarchs.
The fall of the Han was caused by a number of factors.
The economic troubles of later Han times were worsened by continuous military vigilance along the frontier.
Many peasants sought protection against the demands of the imperial government, which deprived them of tax revenues and manpower.
The government was forced to hire more and more foreign soldiers and officers, men willing to serve for pay, but not necessarily loyal to the Han state, because of the broken military conscription system.
The empire was convulsed by civil wars by the end of the second century.
The north was dominated by a group of barbarian peoples who combined elements of their own practices with Chinese culture.
The center of gravity of both the population and Chinese culture shifted to the south when many ethnic Chinese migrated south.
All rival kingdoms were conquered by the frontier kingdom of Qin by the year 221 B.C.E.
The labor of many people was forced by the First Emperor and his Legalist advisers.
The formation of the Xiongnu Confederacy was the result of the attack on the northern nomads by the Qin.
The Han dynasty created impe rial government that lasted for two centuries.
The emperor went on the offensive against the nomads, extended Chinese control in the northwest, and began to use Confucian scholars as government officials.
The family with its strict hierarchy, roles for each member, and values of deference and obedient prepared citizens for their obligations to the state.
In cities and towns across China, the layout, buildings, and activities in the capital city, Chang'an, were replicated.
The network of urban centers was used for regional administration.
The Han dynasty fell in the third century C.E.
The new center of gravity for Chinese civilization was created when many Chinese fled south.
The Roman Empire and the first Chinese empire came from relatively small states that were initially able to subdue their neighbors.
Under strong central governments, they unified widespread territories.
Agriculture was the main source of wealth.
The government derives most of its income from the annual harvest.
Strong independent farmers were pressed into military service or other forms of compulsory labor.
Political and social turmoil were caused by disagreements over who owned the land and how it was used.
The rulers of the Roman and Chinese states secured their positions by breaking the power of the old aristocratic families, seizing their excess land, and giving land to small farmers.
The erosion of state authority was signaled by the later reversal of this process, when wealthy noblemen again gained control of vast tracts of land and reduced the peasants to dependent tenant farmers.
Both empires are spread out from a single core to encompass many different territories.
The cultural unity that was brought to those regions by both brought them to the present day.
Military conquest and political domination were not the only things involved in this development.
Italian and Han settlers brought their languages, beliefs, customs, and technologies to new regions as the population of the core areas outpaced available resources.
Both empires found similar solutions to the problems of administering large populations in an age when men on horseback or on foot were the only way to communicate.
Local officials were given considerable autonomy by the central government.
Local elites identified their own interests with the central government.
A kind of civil service was developed in both empires, staffed by members of the middle class.
Technologies that aided imperial control improved the standard of living.
The highways of commerce and the spread of imperial culture were built to speed up the movement of troops.
The parts of the empire were linked by a network of cities and towns.
Most of the population still resided in the countryside, but those living in urban centers enjoyed most of the advantages of empire.
Rome and Chang'an are the capital cities of China.
Travelers found the same types of buildings and public spaces in outlying regions that they had seen in the capital.
The long borders of Rome and Han China made them vulnerable to neighbors who wanted their prosperity.
The forts and garrisons had to be built and maintained.
The economic prosperity of the two empires was eroded by the cost of frontier defense.
As imperial governments demanded more taxes and services from the hard-pressed civilian population, they lost the loyalty of their own people.
The Roman and Han governments relied on soldiers from the same "barbarian" peoples who were on the frontiers.
Both empires were so weak that their borders were overrun.
The newly dominant immigrant groups were so influenced by imperial culture that they maintained it to the best of their abilities.
Differences that led to different long-term outcomes are brought up in reference to the eventual failure of these two empires.
The lands of the Roman Empire never again achieved the same level of unification after the imperial model was revived in China.
There are a number of interrelated factors that account for the different outcomes.
The cultures had different attitudes about the relationship of individuals to the state.
The individual was more embedded in the larger group in China.
The Chinese family, with its emphasis on a precisely defined hierarchy, unquestioning obedient and solemn rituals of deference to elders and ancestors, was the model for society and the state.
Confucianism, which sanctified hierarchy and provided a code of conduct for public officials, arose long before the imperial system and could be revived and tailored to fit changing political circumstances.
The cult of ancestors in the Roman family was not as strong as that of the Chinese, and the family was not the organizational model of the Roman state.
There was no Roman equivalent of Confucianism that could survive the dissolution of the Roman state.
The Roman Empire had more opportunities for economic and social mobility than China.
The absence of government interference in the Roman Empire resulted in greater economic mobility and a thriving middle class in the towns and cities.
The Roman army, made up of professional soldiers in service for decades and constituting a distinct and increasingly privileged group, frequently played a decisive role in political conflict.
In China, draftees who served for two years were less likely to take the initiative in struggles for power.
Although Roman emperors tried to create an ideology to bolster their position, they were hampered by Republican traditions and the ambiguities about the position of emperor deliberately cultivated by Augustus.
Roman rulers were likely to be chosen by the army or the Senate, and the cult of the emperor had little spiritual content.
The Chinese believe that the emperor was the Son of Heaven and that he had access to the power of the royal ancestors.
In the lands that were once part of the western part of the Roman Empire, there was no reason to revive the emperor's position.
Christianity, with its insistence on monotheism and one doctrine of truth, overcame the Roman emperor's pretensions to divinity and was unwilling to compromise with pagan beliefs.
Buddhism came to China in the early centuries.
There is a selection of ancient sources in the features that typified daily life.