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Saturday, 5 April 2014

China

CHINA HISTORICAL FACTS

China was named after Qin Shi Huang, who became the first emperor of China in 221 BC and was a tyrant responsible for the first version of the Great Wall and Terracotta Army, as well as the deaths of thousands of scholars whom he buried alive to stop them preaching the works of Confucius.

Since Empress Wu Zetian's reign in the 7th century, no female has unilaterally ruled over China.

36 million people, one sixth of the entire human population at the time died in a rebellion in China in the 8th century.

Emperor Taizu's coronation on February 4, 960 launched China's Song dynasty, which would last over three centuries.

Palace portrait on a hanging scroll of Emperor Taizu

The Song Dynasty (960 -1279) was the first government in world history to issue banknotes or paper money. This dynasty also saw the first known use of gunpowder, as well as first discernment of true north using a compass.

In 1000 AD the Chinese were arguably the most advanced peoples in medical knowledge. The subject could be studied at the Chinese Imperial Medical College.

The population of China decreased from 123 million in 1200 to 65 million in 1393, which was due to a combination of Mongol invasions, famine, and plague.

With famine, plagues, and peasant revolts sweeping across China, Zhu Yuanzhang (October 21, 1328 – June 24, 1398), rose to command the force that conquered China and ended the Mongol-led Yuan dynasty, forcing the Mongols to retreat to the Central Asian steppes. Following his seizure of the Yuan capital, Khanbaliq (present-day Beijing), Zhu ascended the throne of China as the Hongwu Emperor in a coronation ceremony on January 22, 1368. This initiated the Ming Dynasty rule over China that would last for three centuries.

Portrait of EFile:Zhu Yuanzhang.Wikipedia
In the 1400s, China owned the greatest seagoing fleet in the world. But by 1525, all of China's "Treasure Fleet" ships had been destroyed at the urging of the political elite who had become alarmed at the rise of a newly rich merchant class.

The Ming dynasty of China fell on April 25, 1644 during a peasant rebellion led by Li Zicheng. Li's rebels sacked the Ming capital of Beijing and the Chongzhen Emperor hanged himself on a tree in the imperial garden outside the Forbidden City. Li proclaimed himself the Emperor of the short-lived Shun dynasty.

Li Zicheng was defeated at the Battle of Shanhai Pass by the joint forces of Wu Sangui and Manchu prince Dorgon. On June 6, 1644 the Manchus and Wu entered Beijing and proclaimed the six-year-old Shunzhi Emperor as Emperor of China. The Qing dynasty was the last imperial dynasty of China, ruling from 1644 to 1912

Flag of the Qing Dynasty

17th century Chinese men traditionally shaved the front hair and combed the back hair into a queue braided with horsehair or black silk. Worn by the Manchus and imposed by them on their Chinese subjects as a sign of submission, the queue was also a mark of dignity and manhood. To pull it was a grave insult.

Out of 376 Jesuits who sailed to China between 1581 and 1712 to convert the pagan Chinese, 127 died en route before they even arrived there.

In 1807 Robert Morrison sailed from Britain to become the first Protestant missionary to China. By the time he died 27 years later, he had baptized only 10 Chinese, but his pioneering work (including a six-volume dictionary and a translation of the Bible) helped missionaries who came after him.

The Taiping Rebellion or the Taiping Civil War was a massive rebellion or civil war in China that lasted from 1850 to 1864 and was fought between the established Manchu-led Qing dynasty and the millenarian movement of the Heavenly Kingdom of Peace. It resulted in 30 million dead.

In 1900 The Boxer Rebellion rose up in north China, led by a group of Chinese citizens who disliked the vast amount of foreign influence that existed in their country. Thousands of Chinese Christian converts plus a number of western missionaries were massacred and burnt alive by the fanactics. The cries of the Boxers- “Sha kuei-tzu” (“kill the devils”) could be heard along with the shrieks of the victims and the groans of the dying. The rebellion was ended with the Boxer Protocol signed on September 7, 1901 by the Qing Empire of China and the nations that had provided military forces.

Signing of the Boxer Protocol Wikipedia Commons

The Wuchang Uprising served as the catalyst to the Xinhai Revolution, which led to the demise of the Qing dynasty, the last Imperial court in China, and the founding of the Republic of China. It began with the dissatisfaction of the handling of a railway crisis. The crisis then escalated to an uprising where the revolutionaries went up against Qing government officials. The uprising was then assisted by the New Army in a coup against their own authorities in the city of Wuchang, Hubei province on October 10, 1911.

Protestant missions in China reached its peak in the mid 1920s, when there were over 8,000 missionaries living there.

In 1930 Londoner Gladys Aylward spends her entire savings on a railway ticket to Tientsin in north China. With a Scottish missionary, Mrs Jeannie Lawson. she achieved much in China having become a foot inspector in the official campaign against the binding of female feet.

The People's Republic of China was established and declared by Mao Zedong on October 1, 1949.


All foreign missionaries were expelled from China in 1951-1952.

Since coming to power in 1949 Chairman Mao had tried to rid China once and for all of Christians, whom he considers to be imperialist traitors. Clearly he didn't succeed. Despite all the persecution the Chinese Christian church endured, it was estimated that in 1969 there were over 50 million Christians compared with 5 million twenty years previously.

The one-child policy, officially the family planning policy, was a population control policy of China which was introduced between 1978 and 1980. The policy allowed many exceptions and ethnic minorities in China were exempt. China's state news agency reported a change in the existing law to a two-child policy on October 29, 2015, citing a statement from the Communist Party of China.

China surpassed the U.S. as the world's largest economy in January of 2015.

Since 1990, the number of people living in poverty in China has fallen from, 85% to 15%.

CHINA FUN FACTS

China has more English speaking people than the United States.

China has four megacities of over 10 million people, the most of any country.

The largest city in the world – based on surface area, is Hulunbuir, Inner Mongolia (China) which is 263 953 km sq (102 000 sq mi).

If the population of China walked past you in single file, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction.

A point in China called the Eurasian Pole of Inaccessibility is 1,644 miles from the nearest sea.

With 14 neighbors China has the most international borders in the world, along with Russia.. China’s land borders are longer, but Russia is the biggest nation.

Ping Pong is the national sport of China.

A 2015 survey found that 7% of people in China are religious, making it the least religious country in the world .

Inventors.about.com, Christian History.org

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