1st hour Shang 2011-2012
Zachary Danke
Ryan Bragiel
Matt Coulter
Introduction (ryan Bragiel)
Long distances and physical barriers separated china from the Middle East. To the west of China are the Himalayas, there were also deserts that blocked movement of people. They traded with countries close to them. Eventually they traded with the Middle East. (Ellis, Esler, 1997)
Yin and yang. The Chinese thought the universe had a balance between two forces. Yin was earth, darkness and female forces yang stood for heaven, light and male forces. (Ellis, Esler, 1997)
Written Chinese was made almost 4000 years ago. It eventually had over 10,000 characters. Also the Chinese developed an accurate calendar with 365 ¼ days. (Ellis, Esler, 1997)

Religion during the Shang Dynasty
There were many religions in the Shang Dynasty. They prayed too many gods and spirits, Shang Di was one of the most important. Shang Di brought plants and animals to earth. Their king was said to be the link between the people and Shang Di. Another major religion was Ying Yang, a Chinese belief that the universe reflected a balance between two forces. Yin is said to be linked to earth, darkness, and female forces. Yang represented light, Heaven, and Male forces. (Ellis and Esler 1997)
Ying Yang (Wikipedia, Maxwell 2005)

Government during the Shang Dynasty
War leaders where highly praised and when they died they were buried in vast tombs. Nobel women had high statues in the Shang dynasty and these women had land. Shang rulers also had large tombs; they also had large rich palaces. Shang kings lead other noble warriors in to battle, to drive off attacking nomads. (Ellis and Esler 1997)
(king during the shang dynasty, Subhuti Dharmananda)

Social class

The royal family was at the top of the social class during the Shang dynasty, under them where Nobel men and women. The “middle class” back then where the merchants and artisans, artisans made goods and art and merchants sold and traded goods. At the bottom of the social class where peasants. These people made up most of the population in china during the Shang dynasty. These people where usually slaves and had little to know money. (Ellis, Esler, 1997)

external image placeholder?w=NaN&h=NaN(social structure during the Shang Dynasty,Jeffery Watkins, 2003)
Job Specialization

Farming methods that where improved in Neolithic time, due to irrigation, led to china having a surplus of food. This intern led to specialized jobs. This contented into the Shang dynasty and when the citizens where classified into three classes. Commoners or the middle class did most of these specialized jobs, the majority of them still farmed. But others where also metal workers, potters, sculptors, and soldiers. These commoners gave a lot of what they earned to the king in the form of taxes, trading what was left for food and other things that they couldn’t make.
(Mandy, http://BBC.com, 2003)


(bowl made during the Shang dynasty, Flicker, unknown)

Chinese public works


This is a drawing of a Shang palace or temple. (www.historyforkids.org)

They had thatched roofs, and were usually in the center of town.

Chinese art


China’s Capital City
Chinas capital city is Yinxu. This city is famous for its oracle bones they were first discovered in 1899. The capital served over 200 years for 12 kings in 8 generations. The Archaeologists discovered more than 100,000 oracle bones that showed the Shang a well structured script with complete written signs. At 30 km² this is the largest archaeological site is China and excavations have uncovered over 80 rammed-earth foundation sites including palaces, shrines, tombs and workshops. From these remains archaeologists have been able to confirm that this was the spiritual and cultural center of the Yin Dynasty.
Lin, Ershen 2007; Wikipedia

Early Chinese art was made from pottery later art was made from bronze.

Work Sited

uknown, (2011). Shang Dynasty Architecture kidopedia. http://www.historyforkids.org

Mandy, (2003). The Shang Dynasty. http://BBC.com