yuan dynasty in china(1271—1368)
Chinese history

yuan dynasty in china(1271—1368)(2)

mongol yuan dynasty

The yuan dynasty was founded by Kublai. It is also known as the Mongol Yuan Dynasty.

It grew out of the Mongol Empire, which split in 1260 due to a civil war between Kublai Khan and Ariq Böke over the Khan’s throne.

The Civil war divided the Mongol Empire into four Khanates.

yuan dynasty government

Kublai perfected the system of central government, establishing the zhongshu sheng(Supreme Executive agency), privy council(Supreme Military agency) and the censorate(supervisory agency).

In addition, he set up an bureau of buddhist and tibetan affairs to oversee religious affairs and administer the Tibetan region.

Tibet has since become an administrative region under the direct  jurisdiction of the central government.

The innovative political system of the Yuan Dynasty was the provincial system.

The provincial system refers to the establishment of a Branch Secretariats, and a prime minister is responsible for the military and political power of the whole province.

The establishment of the provincial system consolidated the unification of the country politically and ensured the centralization of power in the administrative system.

This is a major reform of China’s administrative system, which will have a huge impact on the future.

fall of yuan dynasty

If you ask me why did the yuan dynasty fall?

I will tell you three mainly reasons.

The first reason is internal conflicts and frequent changes of emperors.

The second reason is rulers use all armed might to indulge in aggressive wars.

The third reason is ethnic discrimination leads to the intensification of ethnic conflicts.

yuan dynasty clothing

Yuan Dynasty Mongolian men’s clothing

There is a big difference between the Mongolian clothes of yuan Dynasty and the modern Mongolian clothes.

Most of the modern Mongolian clothes are standing collar, while most of the Mongolian clothes of Yuan Dynasty are handed collar.

Waist line robe

The waist line robe is a common Mongolian robe of the Yuan Dynasty, with a strong grassland style.

It is characterized by narrow sleeves with a cross-neck, and the coat and hem are sewn together, which has many fine pleats, while the waist has many fine horizontal pleats, so it is named waist line robe.

This kind of clothes are usually casual clothes, used for hunting and other leisure activities.

sea blue clothes

Let’s think about it.

If your sleeves are too long and it’s inconvenient for you to bend the bow and shoot the arrow, what should you do?

I’m sure many people would say just roll up your sleeves.

The Mongols of the Yuan Dynasty responded by cutting two holes in the sleeves.

When it’s hot, pull your hand out of the hole and button your sleeve up to the button on your back.

In this way, long sleeves can be changed into short sleeves, thus solving the problem of bow archery.

In addition, this style of clothing had already appeared in the Song Dynasty.

Yuan Dynasty Mongolian women’s clothing

Mongolian aunt crown

Mongolian aunt crown is a distinctive hat of Mongolian women in yuan Dynasty, which is also a symbol of Mongolian noble women’s status and social status.

Long gown with large sleeves

It is characterized by a large sleeve root and a small cuff, showing an inverted trumpet shape, which is usually matched with the aunt crown.

It’s not easy to walk in this kind of gown, so usually two handmaids help to pull up the corners.

Yuan Dynasty Han people’s clothing

Rigidly speaking the Yuan Dynasty Han are not much effected by the Mongolians and they still dress in the Song Dynasty round collar and beizi.

Influence on Ming Dynasty

Although the time of Yuan Dynasty was short, it had far-reaching influence.

Many Ming Dynasty costumes inherited the characteristics of Yuan Dynasty costumes.

yuan dynasty economy

The economy was still dominated by agriculture.

Due to the brutality and exploitation of the Mongol rulers, the overall productivity of the Yuan dynasty was lower than that of the Song Dynasty, but it made great progress in production technology, land reclamation, grain output, water conservancy and extensive cotton cultivation.

Mongolians are a nomadic people. In the grassland period, they were mainly pasturage, with a single economy and no land system.

During the attack on North China, the appalling massacres and plundering caused great destruction.

After entering China, Genghis Khan followed Yelü Chucai’s advice, agreed to revive agriculture and encourage the Han people to cultivate in a long period of peace and stability.

After Kublai Khan accession to the throne, he took measures to encourage production and appease the displaced people.


Most of the farmland in the Yuan Dynasty was concentrated in today’s Hebei, Shandong, Shaanxi, Jiangsu and Sichuan.

In 1329, more than 210 million kg of grain were transported from the south to the north.

This reflects not only the heavy exploitation of the Mongol rulers, but also the abundance of food production.

At this stage, tea, cotton and sugar cane became important cash crops.

In 1289, The Yuan Dynasty set up collection agencies in several provinces in southeastern China to collect a large amount of kapok cloth each year.

In the early years of the Yuan Dynasty, a special agency was set up to take charge of water conservancy, which gradually restored the water conservancy projects of the previous dynasty.

The restoration of these projects has played a great role in protecting agricultural production.

Compared with the Song Dynasty, the agricultural production technology was improved, and the knowledge of seed selection, fertilization, irrigation and harvest reached a new level.

At this time, compared with the previous dynasties, there was a great improvement in farm implements.

In addition, the Yuan Dynasty edited and published the encyclopedia of agriculture, promoted advanced technologies in agricultural production, protected agricultural labor and farmers’ cultivated land.

In yuan Dynasty, land could still be divided into official farmland and private farmland.

The official fields mainly came from the official farmland of the song and jurchen jin dynasties, the lands of the royal relatives and powerful people of the two dynasties, the plundered civilian fields, and the wastelands formed by the long-term wars.

Some of the official land it controlled was used as land for cultivation, some was given to princes, nobles and monks in monasteries, and the rest was farmed by the people and collected land rent.

Most of the private land belonged to the Mongol nobility and the Han landlords, but only a few belonged to the peasants.

After the middle yuan Dynasty, the development of agricultural production declined due to the corruption of the ruling institutions, the aggravation of the exploitation of the landlord class, and the frequent occurrence of floods, droughts, and famine.

The decline of agriculture also indirectly led to the fall of yuan dynasty.

Animal husbandry

The policy of the Yuan Dynasty was to open up pastures and expand the breeding of livestock.

During this period, the plumbing for horse breeding was perfected and a number of institutions for animal husbandry were set up.

Ranches are divided into official ranches and private ranches.

Official pasture was a highly developed form of ownership of large herds formed in the 12th century.

It was also the property of the Khan and all levels of Mongolian nobility.

Private ranches were usually owned by Mongol nobles who occupied large areas of land for ranching.

Handicraft industry

During the Yuan Dynasty, handicraft industry was divided into official and private.

Their businesses were usually textiles, ceramics, wine, cotton and silk.

The silk weaving industry is mainly produced in Jiankang(Now Nanjing), Hangzhou, Quanzhou and other places, with high output and many colors.

The porcelain of the Yuan Dynasty made progress on the basis of the Song Dynasty. The famous blue and white porcelain was a new product of this period.

This dynasty had a highly developed shipbuilding industry and was already using compass to navigate.

The yuan dynasty business

The commerce of this dynasty was mainly controlled by the government, aristocrats, bureaucrats and semu merchants.

The government monopolizes many commodities, and some gold, silver, copper, iron and salt are directly handled by the government.

Tea, lead and tin were sold by the government to traders;

Wine, vinegar, farm implements, bamboo, wood, etc. were operated by merchants and artisan owners, who paid taxes to the government according to the volume of trade.

The nobles, officials and temples also engaged in commerce, depending on their privileges.

The government directly controlled foreign trade and established shi bo si(a department in charge of trade exchange) at Quanzhou, Shanghai, Wenzhou, Hangzhou and Guangzhou.

When foreign merchant ships returned to China, shi bo si issued certificates of authorization.

The materials exported at that time were raw silk, silk, silk, gold, hemp, cotton, vases, lacquered plates, ceramics, gold, silver, iron, lacquer, medicinal materials and so on.

The goods imported are jewelry, ivory, rhinoceros, diamonds, wood and so on.

Dadu (now Beijing) was the largest city of its time, and Marco Polo once said dadu had a large population.

Among these were many foreigners from all over the world who had come to pay tribute or to sell goods for the court.

In addition to Dadu, there are also hangzhou, Suzhou, Guangzhou, Quanzhou, Yangzhou, Kaifeng and other large cities in China.

Monetary system

In order to strengthen the control over the economy, the Yuan Dynasty mainly used paper money.

In 1260, Kublai Khan issued banknotes based on silk, silver or gold.

Holders of banknotes could exchange them for silk, silver or gold according to the law.

At that time, there were exchange offices throughout the country, and these offices would charge a handling fee when exchanging paper money.

However, these currencies soon face devaluation, and the depreciation is very large.

Therefore, many ordinary transactions, loans and goods were priced in silver.

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