A brief talk about Chinese History - Shang Dynasty 1600 to 1066 BC

Jun 29 11:28 2010 Jas Zhou Print This Article

Learn about Chinese history spanning from 2070 BC to now. This article talks about the second Dynasty and the tyrant of an emperor who ended it.

After the defeat of Jie of Xia the Shang Dynasty is now my place. The Shang dynasty spanned over 600 years and had 31 emperors from 1600 to 1066 BC. At the start of this Dynasty Yi Yin played an important role,Guest Posting especially once Tang died. 

Yi Yin advised and counseled 3 emperors, Waibing, Zhngren and Taijia. Around 1541 BC Tang’s grandson started neglecting state affairs, instead choosing to drink and concentrate on his concubines. Yi Yin placed him under house arrest for 3 years until he realized that he was letting down his ancestors and decided to change his ways. Taijia reformed his ways and once again took control of power and became a wise king.Although other accounts states that Yi Yin tried to take the throne by placing Taijia underhouse arrest.

During the Shang they started using animal bones as oracle bones to predict the future. They also worshipped many gods and ancestors, believing that their ancestors also turned into gods after they died. There was a supreme god named shangdi and he ruled over the other gods.However as the shang continued they started worshipping a more natural force named tian, which can be translated as heaven. This natural forced rule all the other gods and rule the earth.

The Mandate of Heaven was introduce in the Shang dynasty. Meaning that the emperor could rule unopposed unless there were numerous natural disasters or the sovereign has lost concern or touch with his people. When this happens the people believed that emperor had lost the mandate of heaven and it was acceptable to rebel and overthrow the emperor.

This mandate gave legitimization in the following dynasties in the eyes of the people. The Shang dynasty moved its capital 6 times the last time to the city of Yin; starting a golden area and also nick naming the Shang dynasty, the Yin dynasty. Although the Yin dynasty could refer to the late Shang dynasty,


The end of the Shang dynasty was around 1066 with their power declining and western zhou kingdom’s powers increasing. Again the emperor of Shang at the time was a tyrant named Zhou.

+He build a deer terrace hundreds of meters high with a circumference of a few miles wide.

+ He made a bronze pillar and took amusement in watching people baked to death by the pillar.

+He uncle gave him some advice he disapproved of, so he was killed and his heart was cut out.

+ He minister also gave some advice and the emperor skinned him and made his skin into paper for a warning to others.

At the battle of Muye in 1044 Emperor Wu of Zhou had a victory against the Shang dynasty and the emperor Zhou. Emperor Wu only had an army of 70,000 but emperor Zhao had a 700,000 strong army. However where Emperor Wu’ s army was well trained, well fed, fit and strong; Emperor Zhao army was comprised mostly of slaves and didn’t want to die for an Emperor that they didn’t care for.

The battle was short with Emperor Zhao’s army fleeing. Seeing his army fleeing emperor Zhou of Shang went to the top of his place and set himself aflame, killing himself in a inferno.

Ending the Shang dynasty.

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Jas Zhou
Jas Zhou

My Blog - Giving you Information on learning Mandarin, living and working in china http://www.chinese-blossom.com/- Offering Cheap Mandarin lessons and Chinese classes in Shanghai

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