It has been proposed that China be renamed and moved to Chinese civilization.

Please discuss it at Talk:China#Requested move. This article is about the Chinese territory, civilization and cultural entity. For the state commonly known as China, see People's Republic of China. For the state commonly known as Taiwan, see Republic of China. For other uses, see China (disambiguation). "Chung Kuo" redirects here. For other uses, see Chung Kuo (disambiguation). China

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China ( i/ t a n /) is seen variously as an ancient civilization extending over a large area in East Asia, a nation and a multinational entity. With nearly 4,000 years of continuous history, China is one of the world's oldest civilizations.[1][2][3] Prior to the 19th century, it possessed one of the most advanced societies and economies in the world; but through successive dynasties it then missed the Industrial Revolution in Europe and began to decline.[4][5] In the 19th and 20th century, imperialism, internal weakness and civil wars damaged the country and its economy, and led to the overthrow of imperial rule. In 1949, after major combat ended in the Chinese Civil War, two states calling themselves "China" emerged:

2 Dynastic rule o 2. Korea and Vietnam. Kinmen.2 Chinese names 2 History o 2. has control over mainland China and the largely self-governing territories of Hong Kong (since 1997) and Macau (since 1999). and writing systems being adopted to varying degrees by neighbors such as Japan.1 Historical political divisions o 3. estimated to have lived from 300.3 Republic of China (1912±49) o 2.1 Prehistory o 2.[6][7][8] By 2011 challenges included the growing divide between rich and poor and environmental degradation.1 English names o 1. Matsu.1 Languages o 6.1 Arts. China was the source of many major inventions.4 Post Civil War (1949±present) 3 Territory and environment o 3.[10][11][12] Contents [hide] y y y y y y y y y 1 Etymology o 1.[9] It has also one of the world's oldest written language systems.2 Geography and climate 4 Economy 5 Culture o 5.000 to 780. now commonly known as Taiwan. the Pratas island group. has control over the islands of Taiwan. Penghu. and literature 6 Demography o 6. commonly known as China. customs.y y The People's Republic of China (PRC). and a few other outlying islands. reforms known as the Four Modernizations improved agriculture. It is one of the earliest known specimens of Homo erectus. Historically. The Republic of China (ROC) established in 1912 in mainland China. scholarship. with Chinese religion. established in 1949.000 years ago. now commonly known as the Peking Man. technology and defense. change to economic policies in Taiwan transformed the island into a technologyoriented industrialized developed economy after a period of high growth rates and rapid industrialization. industry. The first evidence of human presence in the region was found at the Zhoukoudian cave. In the 1950s. the cultural sphere of China has extended across East Asia as a whole. in the 1970s. raising living standards and making the PRC one of the great powers. Through its history. In mainland China.2 Religion 7 Sports and recreation 8 Science and technology 9 See also .

y y y 10 Notes 11 References 12 External links Etymology Main article: Names of China The traditional (top) and simplified (bottom) characters for "China" in Chinese. the westernmost of the Chinese kingdoms during the Zhou Dynasty. the common name remained as Zh ngguó (simplified Chinese: traditional Chinese: .org/wiki/China" \l "cite_note-Liu-18" and Manusm ti (Laws of is used to refer to a country located in the Tibeto-Burman borderlands east of India.[15] In early usage. the imperial governments referred to themselves as the Empire of the Great Qing. "china" as a term for porcelain was spelled differently from the name of the country. Great Ming.[13][14] The first recorded use in English dates from 1555.[20] Another theory is that this word is derived from Yelang. an ancient kingdom in what is now Guizhou whose inhabitants referred to themselves as 'Zina'. This translates traditionally as "the central Kingdom". proposed in the 17th century by Martino Martini. However.[16] used as a name for China as early as AD 150. etc.[18] In the Hindu scriptures Mah bh rata (5th [19] HYPERLINK "http://en. Empire of the .[16] Both these words are derived from the Sanskrit word .[21] Chinese names The official name of China changed with each dynasty or with each new government.[17] There are various scholarly theories regarding the origin of this word. the two words being derived from separate Persian words.wikipedia. The first character means "middle" or "center". a Persian name for China popularized in Europe by Marco Polo." English names The word "China" is derived from Cin ( ). and the second character means "country" or "state. The traditional theory. or as "the middle country". pronounced chin). or from the succeeding Qin Dynasty (221 ± 206 BC). Mandarin pronunciation: [t kw ]) through dynastic changes. . is that "China" is derived from "Qin" ( .

After the Communists took over control of mainland China in 1949. they established the People's Republic of China (PRC). to differ from the capital of his vassals. Some texts imply that "Zh ngguó" was originally meant to refer to the capital of the sovereign. and was used to refer to the late Zhou Dynasty."[nb 3] Zh ngguó was used as a common name for the Republic of China (Zhonghua Minguo) after its establishment in 1912. After the ROC's loss of the UN "China" seat in 1971.The name Zh ngguó first appeared in the Classic of History (6th century BC). Southern Man.[nb 2] The use of "Zh ngguó" implied a claim of political legitimacy. The Republic of China nowadays is commonly known as "Taiwan". for example. and "Zh ngguó" was often used by states who saw themselves as the sole legitimate successor to previous Chinese dynasties. both the Jin Dynasty and the Southern Song state claimed to be "Zh ngguó. Western Rong and Northern Di respectively. the PRC gained the ability to be the "representative" of "China" under the One-China policy and as a result is now commonly known as "China" or "Zh ngguó" in Chinese. as they believed that they were the "center of civilization."[nb 1] while peoples in the four cardinals were called Eastern Yi. in the era of the Southern Song Dynasty.[nb 4] History Main articles: History of China and Timeline of Chinese history History of China ANCIENT 3 Sovereigns and 5 Emperors Xia Dynasty 2100±1600 BC Shang Dynasty 1600±1046 BC Zhou Dynasty 1045±256 BC Western Zhou Eastern Zhou Spring and Autumn Period .

Warring States Period IMPERIAL Qin Dynasty 221 BC±206 BC Han Dynasty 206 BC±220 AD Western Han Xin Dynasty Eastern Han Three Kingdoms 220±280 Wei. Shu & Wu Jin Dynasty 265±420 Western Jin Eastern Jin 16 Kingdoms 304±439 Southern & Northern Dynasties 420±589 Sui Dynasty 581±618 Tang Dynasty 618±907 ( Second Zhou 690±705 ) 5 Dynasties & 10 Kingdoms 907±960 Song Dynasty 960±1279 Northern Song W. Xia Liao Dynasty 907±1125 .

where a cranium has been found and dated at approximately 67.[10][11][12] The fossils are of Peking Man.[22] Prehistory Archaeological evidence suggests that the earliest hominids in China date from 250.24 million years ago. the Indus Valley Civilization. the Maya and other Mesoamerican civilizations.000 to 780. Guangxi. the Minoan civilization of ancient Greece.[25][26] Dynastic rule Main articles: Dynasties in Chinese history and Chinese sovereign . Controversy persists over the dating of the Liujiang remains (a partial skeleton from Minatogawa in Okinawa). Chinese civilization was also one of the few to invent writing.Southern Song Jin Yuan Dynasty 1271±1368 Ming Dynasty 1368±1644 Qing Dynasty 1644±1911 MODERN Republic of China 1912±1949 People's Republic Republic of of China 1949±present China (Taiwan) 1945±present Related articles [show] This box: view · talk · edit Ancient China was one of the earliest centers of human civilization.000 to 2.000 years old. an example of Homo erectus who used fire.[23][24] A cave in Zhoukoudian (near present-day Beijing) has fossils dated at somewhere between 300.000 years. and Ancient Egypt. The earliest evidence of a fully modern human in China comes from Liujiang County.[9] the others being Mesopotamia.

there were seven powerful sovereign states.[27] Archaeologists have since uncovered urban sites. notably the forced standardization of the Chinese language and measurements. each with its own king. but it was considered mythical until scientific excavations found early Bronze Age sites at Erlitou in Henan Province in 1959. and tombs in locations cited as Xia's in ancient historical texts. who proclaimed himself as the "First Emperor" and created many reforms in the Empire. The first unified Chinese state was established by Qin Shi Huang of the Qin state in 221 BC. only occasionally deferring to the Zhou king. ministry and army. until their centralized authority was slowly eroded by feudal warlords. Many independent states eventually emerged out of the weakened Zhou state. 17th to 11th Century BC.Jade deer ornament made during the first historical Chinese dynasty. the Shang. bronze implements. The Qin Dynasty lasted only fifteen years. By the time of the Warring States Period. and continually waged war with each other in the Spring and Autumn Period. but it is impossible to verify that these remains are of the Xia without written records from the period. The Shang were invaded from the west by the Zhou. as its harsh legalist and authoritarian policies soon led to widespread rebellion. . who ruled from the 12th to the 5th century BC. ca. Chinese tradition names the first dynasty Xia. 210 BC. The first Chinese dynasty that left historical records. Some of the thousands of life-size Terracotta Warriors of the Qin Dynasty. The Oracle bone script of the Shang Dynasty represent the oldest forms of Chinese writing found and the direct ancestor of modern Chinese characters used throughout East Asia. the loosely feudal Shang (Yin). settled along the Yellow River in eastern China from the 17th to the 11th century BC.

the Sui Dynasty was short-lived after a failure in the Goguryeo-Sui Wars (598±614) weakened it. Independent Chinese states of this period such as Wu opened diplomatic relations with Japan. including the highly chivalric period of the Three Kingdoms. Vietnam. The Han Dynasty expanded the empire's territory considerably with military campaigns reaching Korea. and created a lasting Han cultural identity among its populace that extends to the present day. After Han's collapse. another period of disunion followed. However. . introducing the Chinese writing system there. China was reunited under the Sui. In 580 AD. and also helped establish the Silk Road in Central Asia.The subsequent Han Dynasty ruled China between 206 BC and 220 AD. Mongolia and Central Asia.

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