|History of the Northern Dynasties|
|Literal meaning||North History|
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The History of the Northern Dynasties (Chinese :《北史》; pinyin :Běishǐ; literally:North History) is one of the official Chinese historical works in the Twenty-Four Histories canon. The text contains 100 volumes and covers the period from 386 to 618, the histories of Northern Wei, Western Wei, Eastern Wei, Northern Zhou, Northern Qi, and Sui dynasty. Like the History of the Southern Dynasties , the book was started by Li Dashi and compiled from texts of the Book of Wei and Book of Zhou . Following his death, Li Yanshou (李延寿), son of Li Dashi, completed the work on the book between 643 and 659. Unlike most of the rest of the Twenty-Four Histories, this work was not commissioned by the state.
Chinese is a group of related, but in many cases not mutually intelligible, language varieties, forming the Sinitic branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family. Chinese is spoken by the ethnic Chinese majority and many minority ethnic groups in China. About 1.2 billion people speak some form of Chinese as their first language.
Hanyu Pinyin, often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Chinese in mainland China and to some extent in Taiwan. It is often used to teach Standard Mandarin Chinese, which is normally written using Chinese characters. The system includes four diacritics denoting tones. Pinyin without tone marks is used to spell Chinese names and words in languages written with the Latin alphabet, and also in certain computer input methods to enter Chinese characters.
The Twenty-Four Histories, also known as the Orthodox Histories are the Chinese official historical books covering a period from 3000 BC to the Ming dynasty in the 17th century.
Volumes 1–5 contain the Wei annals including the Eastern Wei and Western Wei emperors. Volumes 6–8 contain the annals of the Northern Qi emperors, volumes 9–10 contain the annals of the Northern Zhou emperors, and volumes 11–12 contain the annals of the Sui emperors. Volumes 13–14 contain the biographies of empresses and consorts. Volumes 15–19 contain biographies of the imperial families of the Wei dynasties and volumes 20–50 contain the other Wei biographies. Volumes 51-79 contain biographies of figures from the Northern Qi (51–56), Northern Zhou (59–70), and Sui (71–79) dynasties. Volumes 80 through 100 contain other biographical content, including families of imperial consorts (80), Confucian scholars (81-82), literature (83), filial acts (84), recluses (75–76), exemplars of the loyal and righteous (85), virtuous officials (86), cruel officials (87), recluses (88), divination (89–90), exemplary women (91), favorites of nobles (92), foreign states and peoples (93–99), and a preface to the biographies (100).
Chinese classic texts or canonical texts refers to the Chinese texts which originated before the imperial unification by the Qin dynasty in 221 BC, particularly the "Four Books and Five Classics" of the Neo-Confucian tradition, themselves a customary abridgment of the "Thirteen Classics". All of these pre-Qin texts were written in classical Chinese. All three canons are collectively known as the classics.
The Northern and Southern dynasties was a period in the history of China that lasted from 386 to 589, following the tumultuous era of the Sixteen Kingdoms and the Wu Hu states. It is sometimes considered as the latter part of a longer period known as the Six Dynasties. Though an age of civil war and political chaos, it was also a time of flourishing arts and culture, advancement in technology, and the spread of Mahayana Buddhism and Daoism. The period saw large-scale migration of Han Chinese to the lands south of the Yangtze. The period came to an end with the unification of all of China proper by Emperor Wen of the Sui dynasty.
The Southern Qi (479-502) was the second of the Southern dynasties in China, followed by the Liang Dynasty.
The Northern Qi was one of the Northern dynasties of Chinese history and ruled northern China from 550 to 577. The dynasty was founded by Emperor Wenxuan, and it was ended following attacks from Northern Zhou.
Emperor Wu or the Wu Emperor is the posthumous name of numerous Chinese rulers:
Emperor Wen of Sui, personal name Yang Jian (楊堅), Xianbei name Puliuru Jian (普六茹堅), nickname Nryana, was the founder and first emperor of China's Sui dynasty. He was a hard-working administrator and a micromanager. The Sui Shu records him as having withdrawn his favour from the Confucians, giving it to "the group advocating Xing-Ming and authoritarian government." As a Buddhist, he encouraged the spread of Buddhism through the state. He is regarded as one of the most important emperors in Chinese history, reunifying China in 589 after centuries of division since the fall of the Western Jin dynasty in 316. During his reign, the construction of the Grand Canal began.
The Book of Wei, also known by its Chinese name as the Wei Shu, is a classic Chinese historical text compiled by Wei Shou from 551 to 554, and is an important text describing the history of the Northern Wei and Eastern Wei from 386 to 550.
The grand chancellor, also translated as counselor-in-chief, chancellor, chief councillor, chief minister, imperial chancellor, lieutenant chancellor and prime minister, was the highest-ranking executive official in the imperial Chinese government. The term was known by many different names throughout Chinese history, and the exact extent of the powers associated with the position fluctuated greatly, even during a particular dynasty.
The Northern Zhou followed the Western Wei, and ruled northern China from 557 to 581 AD. The last of the Northern Dynasties of China's Northern and Southern dynasties period, it was eventually overthrown by the Sui Dynasty. Like the preceding Western and Northern Wei dynasties, the Northern Zhou were members of the Tuoba clan of the Xianbei.
The Book of Sui is the official history of the Sui dynasty. It ranks among the official Twenty-Four Histories of imperial China. It was commissioned by Emperor Taizong of the Tang dynasty, and written by a team of prominent scholars, including Yan Shigu, Kong Yingda, and Zhangsun Wuji, with Wei Zheng as the lead author. It was completed in 636 AD.
The Book of Qi or Book of Southern Qi is a history of the Chinese dynasty Southern Qi covering the period from 479 to 502, and is one of the Twenty-Four Histories of Chinese history. It was written by Xiao Zixian during the succeeding Liang Dynasty, and is unique in that Xiao Zixian was the only author of any of the Twenty-Four Histories to be a direct descendant of the founder of the dynasty being written about.
Empress Ashina (551–582) was an empress of the Chinese/Xianbei dynasty Northern Zhou. She was the daughter of Göktürk's Muqan Qaghan, and her husband was Emperor Wu.
The Old Book of Tang, or simply the Book of Tang, is the first classic historical work about the Tang dynasty, comprising 200 chapters, and is one of the Twenty-Four Histories. Originally compiled during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period, it was superseded by the New Book of Tang which was compiled in the Song dynasty, but later regained acceptance.
Pei Ju (547-627), birth name Pei Shiju, courtesy name Hongda, formally Duke Jing of Anyi, was a Chinese cartographer, diplomat, politician, and writer who lived in the Sui and Tang dynasties, briefly serving as a chancellor during the reign of Emperor Gaozu of Tang. He was praised by traditional Chinese historians for his ability and lack of corruption, but blamed for flattering Emperor Yang of Sui and practically directly contributing to Sui's downfall by encouraging many external military campaigns that drained Sui's resources. Modern historians have questioned these assessments: Arthur F. Wright labelled the latter judgement in the Zizhi tongjian a "particularly blatant piece of editorializing" and "absurd ... beyond doubt".
Ji or Jicheng was an ancient city in northern China, which has become the longest continuously inhabited section of modern Beijing. Historical mention of Ji dates to the founding of the Zhou Dynasty in about 1045 BC. Archaeological finds in southwestern Beijing where Ji was believed to be located date to the Spring and Autumn period. The city of Ji served as the capital of the ancient states of Ji and Yan until the unification of China by the Qin Dynasty in 221 BC. Thereafter, the city was a prefectural capital for Youzhou through the Han Dynasty, Three Kingdoms, Western Jin Dynasty, Sixteen Kingdoms, Northern Dynasties, and Sui Dynasty. With the creation of a Jizhou (蓟州) during the Tang Dynasty in what is now Tianjin Municipality, the city of Ji took on the name Youzhou. Youzhou was one of the Sixteen Prefectures ceded to the Khitans during the Five Dynasties. The city then became the southern capital of the Liao Dynasty and then main capital of the Jin Dynasty (1115-1234). In the 13th Century, Kublai Khan built a new capital city for the Yuan Dynasty adjacent to Ji to the north. The old city of Ji became a suburb to Dadu. In the Ming Dynasty, the old and new cities were merged by Beijing's Ming-era city wall.
The unnamed daughter of Emperor Xiaoming of Northern Wei was briefly the emperor of Northern Wei (386–534), a Xianbei dynasty that ruled Northern China from the late fourth to the early sixth century AD. She bore the surname Yuan, originally Tuoba. Yuan was the only child of Emperor Xiaoming, born to his concubine Consort Pan. Soon after her birth, her grandmother the Empress Dowager Hu, who was also Xiaoming's regent, falsely declared that she was a boy and ordered a general pardon. Emperor Xiaoming died soon afterwards. On 1 April 528, Empress Dowager Hu installed the infant on the throne for a matter of hours before replacing her with Yuan Zhao the next day. Xiaoming's daughter was not recognised as an emperor (huangdi) by later generations. No further information about her is available.
The Dugu sisters were part-Xianbei, part-Han Chinese sisters of the Dugu clan who lived in the Western Wei (535–557), Northern Zhou (557–581) and Sui (581–618) dynasties. All were daughters of the Western Wei general Dugu Xin. The eldest sister became a Northern Zhou empress, the seventh sister became a Sui dynasty empress, and the fourth sister was posthumously honored as an empress during the Tang dynasty (618–907). The seventh sister Dugu Qieluo, in particular, was one of the most influential women in Chinese history, owing to her closeness to her husband Yang Jian throughout their 45-year monogamous marriage.
Dugu Xin, known as Dugu Ruyuan before 540, was a Xianbei military general and official during the chaotic Northern and Southern Dynasties period. In 534, Dugu Xin followed Emperor Xiaowu of Northern Wei to the west to join the warlord Yuwen Tai, and in the ensuing years led Western Wei forces against their archnemesis, the Eastern Wei. Despite an early debacle, he captured the former Northern Wei capital Luoyang from Eastern Wei in 537. He rose to high ranks under Yuwen Tai, and his eldest daughter married Yuwen Tai's son Yuwen Yu. When the Northern Zhou dynasty replaced Western Wei, Dugu Xin was created Duke of Wei (衛國公), but was soon forced by the powerful regent Yuwen Hu to commit suicide for challenging him.
The military history of the Northern and Southern dynasties encompasses the period of Chinese military activity from 420 to 589. Officially starting with Liu Yu's usurpation of the Jin throne and creation of his Liu Song dynasty in 420, it ended in 589 with the Sui dynasty's conquest of Chen dynasty and reunification of China. The first of the Northern dynasties did not however begin in 420, but in 386 with the creation of Northern Wei. Thus there is some unofficial overlap with the era of the Sixteen Kingdoms.
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National Sun Yat-sen University is a public research-intensive university renowned as an official think tank scholars' community as well as an academic center of oceanology and management studies, located in Sizihwan, Kaohsiung, Taiwan and Pratas Islands, South China Sea. NSYSU is the first national comprehensive university of Southern Taiwan, and is the nation's first top seven research universities.
The History of the Southern Dynasties is one of the official Chinese historical works in the Twenty-Four Histories canon. It contain 80 volumes and covers the period from 420 to 589, the histories of Liu Song, Southern Qi, Liang dynasty, and Chen dynasty. Like the History of the Northern Dynasties, the book was started by Li Dashi. Following his death, Li Yanshou (李延壽), son of Li Dashi completed the work on the book between 643 and 659. As a historian, Li Yanshou also took part of some of the compilation during the early Tang dynasty. Unlike the many other contemporary historical texts, the book was not commissioned by the state.
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