The period of political disagreement between Tang and Song, known as the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms, lasted from 907 to 960. During this half-century, China was a multi-state system in all respects. Five regimes, namely (later) Liang, Tang, Jin, Han and Zhou, quickly succeeded each other and controlled the traditional imperial heart of northern China. Among the regimes, the leaders of the Tang, Jin and Han (later) were Sinicized Shatuo Turks who ruled over the ethnic majority of Han Chinese. More stable and smaller regimes, mainly ethnic rulers, coexisted in southern and western China during this period, cumulatively forming the “Ten Kingdoms.” Six Dynasties is the collective term for the six successive dynasties ruled by the Han during this turbulent period. All had their capital in Jianye, present-day Nanjing. After the peace treaty of 1304, which ended a series of Mongol civil wars, the emperors of the Yuan dynasty were considered the nominal Great Khan (Khagan) of the largest Mongol Empire over the other Mongol khanates, which, however, remained de facto autonomous. The era was known as Pax Mongolica, when much of the Asian continent was ruled by the Mongols. For the first and only time in history, the Silk Road was fully controlled by a single state, facilitating the movement of people, trade and cultural exchange. A road network and postal system were set up to connect the vast empire. The lucrative maritime trade that developed from the previous Song Dynasty continued to flourish, with Quanzhou and Hangzhou becoming the world`s largest ports. Adventurous travelers from the far west, especially the Venetian Marco Polo, had settled in China for decades. Upon his return, his detailed travelogues inspired generations of medieval Europeans with the splendor of the Far East.

The Yuan Dynasty was the first ancient economy in which paper money, then known as Jiaochao, was used as the predominant medium of exchange. Its unrestricted issuance at the end of the Yuan dynasty caused hyperinflation, which eventually led to the fall of the dynasty. In 960, the Song dynasty was founded by Emperor Taizu, with its capital at Kaifeng (also known as Bianjing). In 979, the Song Dynasty united most of China proper, while large parts of the outer territories were occupied by Sinicized nomadic empires. The Khitan Liao dynasty, which lasted from 907 to 1125, ruled Manchuria, Mongolia and parts of northern China. In present-day Chinese northwestern provinces of Gansu, Shaanxi and Ningxia, Tangut tribes founded the Western Xia dynasty from 1032 to 1227. There were several groups of Chinese dynasties ruled by families with patrilineal relations, but for various reasons these regimes are considered separate dynasties and retroactively receive different names for historiographical purposes. Conditions such as differences in their official dynastic title and fundamental changes in their dominance would require a nomenclatural distinction in academia, even if these ruling clans had common ancestors.

China has been politically divided during several periods of its history, with different regions ruled by different dynasties. These dynasties functioned effectively as separate states with their own court and political institutions. Political divisions existed during the Three Kingdoms, the Sixteen Kingdoms, the Northern and Southern dynasties, and the Five Dynasties and the Ten Kingdoms. The earliest known written documents in China`s history date back to 1250 BC. AD, of the Shang Dynasty (c. 1600-1046 BC), during the reign of King Wu Ding,[1][2] referred to in records as the twenty-first king of Shang. [3] [4] Ancient historical texts such as the Book of Documents (first chapters, 11th century BC), the Bamboo Annals (c. 296 BC) and the Great Historian`s Archives (c. 91 BC) describe a Xia dynasty before the Shang, but no writing is known from this period, and the Shang writings do not indicate the existence of the Xia. The Shang ruled the Yellow River Valley, which is generally considered the cradle of Chinese civilization.

However, Neolithic civilizations emerged in various cultural centers along the Yellow and Yangtze Rivers. These Yellow River and Yangtze River civilizations were born thousands of years before Shang. With thousands of years of uninterrupted history, China is one of the oldest civilizations in the world and is considered one of the cradles of civilization. [5] [6] According to historian and sinologist Karl August Wittfogel, Chinese dynasties founded by non-Han peoples who ruled part or all of China can be divided into two types, depending on how the dominant ethnic groups came to China. [97] This dynasty ruled China for the next 300 years. The Qing Dynasty was replaced by the Republic of China, ending the period of the ancient dynasties. Qing dynasties The “dynasties of conquest” or “dynasties of conquest” (征服王朝; zhēngfú wángcháo) refer to the dynasties of China founded by non-Han peoples who tended to resist Han culture and preserve the identity of the ruling ethnic groups. [97] [98] For example, the Liao dynasty and the Yuan dynasty, ruled by the Khitans and the Mongols respectively, are considered the dynasties of conquest of China. [97] The Shang Dynasty is the oldest recorded Chinese dynasty supported by archaeological evidence. 31 kings ruled much of the region along the Yellow River.

There were 13 dynasties that ruled ancient China. The Xia Dynasty is considered the first dynasty of ancient China, having lasted nearly 500 years, including the reign of 17 emperors. It is believed that the extravagance of the Xia court and the resulting pressure on the people led to this uprising. Tang then took over the country, reduced taxes, suspended the grandiose construction projects started by Jie (who deprived the kingdom of resources), and ruled with such wisdom and efficiency that art and culture were allowed to flourish. The script developed during the Shang Dynasty along with metallurgy, architecture and the religion of bronze. Chinese history has alternated between periods of political unity and peace and periods of war and state failure – the most recent being the Chinese Civil War (1927-1949).