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China Vocabulary

Loess A fertile deposit of wind blown soil.
Oracles Bone One of the animal bones or tortoise shells used by Chinese priests to communicate to the gods.
Mandate of Heaven The divine approval thought to be the basis of royal authority.
Dynastic Cycle The historical pattern of the rise, decline, and replacement of dynastics.
Feudalism A political system when nobles are granted the use of lands that belong to the king in exchange for loyalty and protection.
Confucius China’s most influential scholar when the Zhou Dynasty was in decline.
Filial Piety The respect shown by children for their parents and elders.
Bureaucracy A system of departments and agencies formed to carry out the work of government.
Daoism A philosophy based on the ideas of the Chinese thinker Laozi, who taught people should be guided by a universal force called the Dao.
Legalism A philosophy based on the idea that a highly efficient and powerful government is key to the social order.
I Ching A Chinese book of orders that are consulted to answer ethical and practical problems.
Yin and Yang In Chinese thought, the two powers that govern the natural rhythms of life.
Qin Dynasty A short lived Chinese dynasty that replaced the Zhou Dynasty in the 3rd century BC.
Shi Huangdi Means “first emperor” and begun his reign by halting the internal battles that had sapped Chinese strength.
Autocracy A government in which the ruler has unlimited power and uses it in an arbitrary manner.
Han Dynasty Was ruled from 202 BC to AD 9 and again from AD 23 to 220.
Centralized Government A government in which power is concentrated in a central authority to which local governments are subject.
Civil Service Is administrative departments of a government such as those in which employees are hired on the basis of their scores on examinations.
Monopoly A groups exclusive control over the production and distribution of certain goods.
Assimilation The adoption of a conqueror’s culture by a conquered people.
Tang Taizong A ruler that ruled the Tang Dynasty that lasted from 626 to 649 and expanded the empire.
Wu Zhao The ruler during the campaign in Korea and she held the real power while weak emperors sat on the throne.
Movable Type Are blocks of metal and wood, each barring a single character to make a page for printing.
Gentry A class of powerful, welll-to-do people who enjoy a high social status.
Created by: 40047273