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The Shang Dynasty. The Shang Ruled between 1600 BC and 1046 BC. Timeline of its Rulers. 1676 BC- King Tang of Shang ruled. 1400 BC- The Erligang Culture ruled. 1398 BC- King Pan Geng ruled. King Wu Ding ruled 1250,1122 BC. 1101 BC- King Di Yi ruled. King Zhou ruled 1075,1046 BC. .

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The shang dynasty

The Shang Dynasty

The Shang Ruled between

1600 BC and 1046 BC

Timeline of its rulers
Timeline of its Rulers

  • 1676 BC- King Tang of Shang ruled.

  • 1400 BC- The Erligang Culture ruled.

  • 1398 BC- King Pan Geng ruled.

  • King Wu Ding ruled 1250,1122 BC.

  • 1101 BC- King Di Yi ruled.

  • King Zhou ruled 1075,1046 BC.

King Tang of Shang


  • The Shang made the earliest glazed pottery.

  • Also, evidence was found for a potter’s wheel in the.

  • Bronze casting was industrialized in this dynasty.

Pottery with a carved geometric pattern, Shang Dynasty, 1600-1100 BC.


  • The Shang determined that the year was 364 ¼ days long.

  • The First Appearance of Chinese script was in this dynasty.

  • They made Steppe-like war Chariots.

This is what a Steppe-like war Chariot looked like.


  • Most of the economy was focused on bronze-ware vessels and weapons.

  • This production required a large labor force.

  • The labor force had to be able to handle the mining, refining, and transportation of the necessary copper, tin, and lead ores.

This is the bronze pot that a Nobleman or Noblewoman would own.


  • This in turn created a need for official managers that could oversee both hard-laborers and skilled artisans and craftsmen.

  • Bronze was also used in the fittings of spoke-wheeled chariots, which came into widespread use in China by 1200 BC


  • The Shang Kings offered sacrifices to royal ancestors and the high god Di.

  • Di was believed to be responsible for the rain, wind, and thunder.

This picture shows the Shang god Di.


  • The royal Court and Aristocrats required a vast amount of bronze vessels for ceremonial purposes and events of religious divination.

  • Shang kings asserted social supremacy by acting as the High Priests.

  • The Shang kings also lead the divination ceremonies.

This is a Shang Dynasty bronze pou vessel with four ram heads.


  • The Shang Dynasty was an Aristocratic society.

  • A King Also ruled over the military nobility.

  • Territorial rulers were appointed by the King of the Shang.

  • This was done in return for Support in the king military campaigns.


  • Underneath the aristocratic class was the Priest class.

  • The priests kept the records of the government and also, were in charge of religion.

This is the capitol of the Shang now.

Social scale
Social Scale

  • The social scale was lead by a priest king.

  • Below the priest king there were the aristocrats.

The Social Division of the Shang was simple and well-defined.

Social scale1
Social Scale

  • The aristocrats are divided into two different social classes.

  • One of these social classes was the Nobility.

  • The other of the two was the commoners.

This shows two nobles.


  • The oldest documents of Chinese Script date from King Wu Ding’s reign, about 1150 BC.

  • The documents are actually archival materials incised on oracle bones stored in the royal archives.

This is a Shang Dynasty oracle bone from the Shanghai Museum.


  • A second type of writing is the scarce inscriptions on ritual bronze vessels.

  • Another type of literature of the Shang is the speeches of rulers.

  • The speeches are in the Shangshu, also called Shujing, the “Book of Documents.”

Fall of the shang
Fall of the Shang

  • Shang Zhou, the last Shang king, committed suicide after his army was defeated by the Zhou people.

  • After the Shang were defeated, the Zhou king, King Wu of Zhou, allowed Wugeng Lufu to rule the Shang as a service kingdom.

This shows King Wu of Zhou.

Fall of the shang1
Fall of the Shang

  • Wugeng Lufu was Shang Zhou’s son.

  • Zhou Wu sent three of his brothers and an army to ensure that Wugeng Lufu would not rebel.

  • After Zhou Wu’s death, the Shang rebelled and collapsed after three years, leaving Zhou in control of Shang territory.