yuan dynasty in china
Chinese history

yuan dynasty in china(1271—1368)

the yuan dynasty

the yuan dynasty was founded by Kublai Khan.

It was the first great United dynasty founded by the ethnic minorities of China.

In 1271, Kublai Khan took the meaning of “Da Zai Qian Yuan” in the Book of Changes and renamed it “Great Yuan”.

The following year, yuan dynasty capital was in dadu(now beijing).

 In 1279, the exiled regime of the Southern Song dynasty was completely destroyed, ending the long period of chaos since the end of the Tang Dynasty.

Since then, it continued to expand abroad, successively attacking Japan, Myanmar, Vietnam, Java and other countries, but all ended in failure.

In the middle of the Yuan Dynasty, the succession of the imperial throne was disordered and coups were frequent.

In the later period, the political corruption, the interference of officials and officials, the increasingly intensified national and class contradictions led to the peasant uprising at the end of yuan Dynasty.

After the Yuan Dynasty withdrew from the Central Plains, the Northern Yuan regime lasted until 1402.

yuan dynasty art

At the beginning of the yuan Dynasty, there was a big gap between the yuan dynasty rulers and the literati in the central Plains in terms of educational level, cultural and artistic quality, etc.

In order to further consolidate the rule, yuan dynasty rulers treated the Confucian officials with courtesy, paid attention to The Han culture, and learned the way of governing the country from the Confucian classics.

Kublai Khan was a man of great talent. He vigorously recruited talents and put the Han Confucian ministers in high position.

In addition, he also let the Han literati to the royal family and the Mongolian ministers disciple han culture education.

In the reign of the following emperors, they paid attention to the art of painting and calligraphy.

In the painting of The Yuan Dynasty, literati paintings occupied the mainstream of the painting world.

Since there was no painting academy in the Yuan Dynasty, except for a few professional painters who served directly in the court, most of them were scholastic painters in high positions and literati painters in opposition.

Their creation is relatively free, more to show their own living environment, interest and ideal.

Landscape, dead wood, bamboo and stone appeared in large numbers, and the number of figure paintings directly reflecting social life decreased.

Their works emphasize literariness and the charm of brush and ink, and attach importance to the combination of calligraphy and poetry, calligraphy and painting.

yuan dynasty art inherited the painting theory of literati such as Wen Tong, Su Shi and Mi Fu in the late Northern Song Dynasty. Formed a distinct style of The Times, and promoted the vigorous development of literati paintings in later generations.

During the reign of the Yuan Dynasty, there appeared huang Gongwang, Wu Zhen, Ni Zan, Wang meng and other famous painters.

yuan dynasty porcelain

The porcelain industry had a very important development in the Yuan Dynasty, which can be said to be a turning point in the development of Chinese porcelain history.

At this time, the production of traditional kiln site did not completely stop, but the product quality was relatively rough.

On the whole, yuan dynasty porcelain inherited the old system of the previous generation, except blue and white, underglaze red and other varieties, without too many inventions.

But the rise of Jingdezhen is an exception.

Jingdezhen at this time successfully fired new varieties of porcelain, blue and white, became the main varieties of porcelain in the Ming and Qing Dynasties.

Thus completely changed the face of Chinese porcelain production, with epoch-making significance.

At this time, due to the increase in export demand, the production scale is generally expanded, the number of large implements is increased, and the firing technology is more mature.

yuan dynasty emperors

The following names are all the emperors of the Yuan Dynasty.

  • Kublai Khan
  • Temür Khan
  • Külüg Khan
  • Ayurbarwada Buyantu Khan
  • Gegeen Khan
  • Yesün Temür
  • Ragibagh Khan
  • Jayaatu Khan Tugh Temür
  • Khutughtu Khan Kusala
  • Rinchinbal Khan
  • Toghon Temür

yuan dynasty inventions

Color printing

In 1941, China discovered a Diamond Sutra engraved by the Yuan Dynasty. This Diamond Sutra is two-color overprint. This is the earliest known color overprint in woodcut.

Wood type wheel typesetting plate.

Wang Zhen, a scientist in the Yuan Dynasty, invented the typesetting plate of a movable type wheel, which led to the rapid development of movable type printing.

An encyclopedia of plants and agriculture

The book is divided into three parts, the first part of agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry, by-products, fishing and water conservancy and other aspects of the comprehensive discussion.

The second part introduces the varieties, characteristics, cultivation, planting, harvest, storage and utilization of various crops. In particular, Wang Zhen divided the crops into six categories, including grain, vegetable, fruit and miscellaneous, etc., and scientifically classified the species and described the plant characters.

The third part is divided into 20 categories, such as field system, granaries, boats and carts, irrigation, sericulture, weaving fiber, flax, etc. It introduces 257 kinds of agricultural machinery in detail, and it is illustrated with 306 drawings and written descriptions, which is more valuable than all previous books on agricultural machinery.


The Song Dynasty invented the firelock made of bamboo tubes.

But it can’t be used again after one or two launches.

The Yuan Dynasty produced a new type of firelock. Let the firelock into the practical stage.

Yuan dynasty calendar

Guo Shoujing, a celestial scholar and expert on water conservancy, formulated the Shoushi Calendar and promulgated it in 1280.

In The Shoushi Calendar, the tropical year is 365.2425 days, while the modern measurement of the tropical year is 365.2419 days. The difference between the two is only 26 seconds.

The Gregorian calendar used in the world now also adopts 365.2425 days as a year, But it was made 300 years later than the Shoushi Calendar.

It was the most precise and longest used calendar in ancient China.

In addition, Guo Shoujing also designed and manufactured astronomical instruments such as simple instrument, elevation instrument and gnomon.

At the same time, he advocated the establishment of a large network of astronomical monitoring stations throughout the country based on actual observations.

Guo Shoujing also designed and manufactured a large timing instrument, which is the representative of the ancient Chinese timing machinery manufacturing technology.

Innovation of cotton spinning technology

Huang Daopo invented a new spinning tool to improve the spinning efficiency. (such as fluffing machines, crushers and three-spindle treadle powered weaving looms)

yuan dynasty religion

After Kublai Khan, the founder of the Yuan Dynasty, came to the throne and invited the famous Tibetan monk pasbadong to become the royal preceptor.

He was appointed to be in charge of Buddhist affairs throughout the country and to lead political and religious affairs in Tibet.

After pasbadong died, many of his line of monks went on to serve as royal preceptor.

To the end of the Yuan Dynasty, the emperor to ascend the throne, must first find the royal preceptor ordained.

At that time, the expenses of holding dharma meetings, building Buddhist temples, carving Buddhist sutras and other buddhist works were mostly paid out of the state Treasury, and a large amount of land was often given to temples.

In addition, some monks enjoyed political and economic privileges.

yuan dynasty culture

The establishment of the Yuan Dynasty broke the artificial cultural shielding phenomenon in history, and the reality of Chinese cultural diversity was widely recognized.

Compared with most of the Feudal dynasties in China, the ideological and cultural concepts of the mongol yuan Dynasty have two significant features: one is compatibility, the other is practical.

Under the guidance of this thought, yuan dynasty culture environment showed the characteristics of compatibility and practical.

The cultural compatibility of the Yuan Dynasty is mainly reflected in the following aspects: it was the only dynasty in ancient Chinese history that did not put forward the “taboo” system from the official perspective;

It is one of the dynasties with the fewest ideological and cultural restrictions in The feudal history of China.

According to statistics, the cultural ban of the Yuan Dynasty is only Several tenths of the Ming and Qing dynasties.

It was also the only dynasty in The feudal history of China that explicitly proposed the freedom of religious belief.

At that time, all the major religions in the world had their places of activity and followers in China, which was probably a unique cultural phenomenon in the whole Eurasian continent at that time.

The compatible cultural atmosphere provides a good environment for the development of yuan dynasty culture, and yuanqu is formed in this environment.

Nowadays, yuanqu is regarded as a treasure of Chinese culture alongside Tang and Song poems.

Some scholars believe that the birth and prosperity of The Yuanqu is mainly influenced by the minority culture and loose cultural policies.

For the first time in Chinese history, It was set up a special class of “Confucianists” to protect intellectuals.

There were more than 400 colleges in that period, and the number of state and county schools peaked at more than 24,400.

yuan dynasty contributions

The Yuan Dynasty realized the great unification of China once again.

The establishment of a provincial-level system at the local level is still in use today.

Tibet was formally incorporated into China during the Yuan Dynasty.

Paper money became the currency of circulation and promoted the development of commerce.

More developed maritime trade, Quanzhou port is known as the first big port of the East.

(But there have been four maritime bans)

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