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Qin Dynasty
Learn Chinese - History and Culture

Qin Dynasty (221-206 B.C.)

In 221 B.C., Ying Zheng (yíng zhèng 嬴政), ruler of the State of Qin (qín guó 秦国) and a man of great talent and bold vision, ended the 250-odd years of rivalry among the independent principalities during the Warring States Period (zhàn guó shí qī 战国时期), and established the first centralized, unified, multi-ethnic feudal state in Chinese history — the Qin Dynasty (qín cháo 秦朝, 221-206 B.C.).

He called himself Qin Shi Huang (qín shǐ huáng 秦始皇) or "First Emperor of Qin." He standardized the written script, weights and measures, and currencies, and established the system of prefectures and counties. The sovereigns of the next 2,000-odd years followed the feudal governmental structure established by him. He mobilized more than 300,000 people over a period of a dozen years to build the Great Wall (cháng chéng 长城), which stretches for 5,000 km in north China. Qin Shi Huang had the work on his enormous mausoleum started early in his reign. When they were unearthed in 1974 in Xi'an (xī 'ān 西安), the terracotta warriors (bīng mǎ yǒng 兵马俑) of the "underground army" of some 8,000 vivid, life-sized pottery figures, horses and chariots guarding the mausoleum at the Qin Shi Huang tomb site amazed the world.




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