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Quizlet Link:. http://quizlet.com/_ f7cy8. Unit 2 – Classical Empires. Eastern India & China. Concept Questions. What caused the classical empires to develop and what effects did this development have on civilization?

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unit 2 classical empires

Quizlet Link:


Unit 2 – Classical Empires

Eastern India & China

concept questions
Concept Questions
  • What caused the classical empires to develop and what effects did this development have on civilization?
  • What were the major accomplishments of the civilizations of India and China during the “Classical Era”?
  • What are the historical origins and central beliefs of Hinduism, Buddhism and Confucianism?
  • What factors contributed to the rise and fall of empires and dynasties in the East?
  • Aryans from central Asia conquer the Dravidians and grow into an empire as a response to Greek challenges
  • Mauryan Empire – golden age
    • Chandragupta Maurya
    • Bureaucratic govt. – divided into provinces
    • Heavily taxed to pay for the large army
  • Asoka
    • Chandragupta’s grandson
    • Bothered by mass death, converts to Buddhism
    • India falls into turmoil after his death
  • Gupta Empire
    • Reunites India after the fall of the Mauryan Empire
    • Expanded Indian empire
indian culture
Indian Culture
  • Astronomy, Math and Medicine
    • Calendar based on the sun
      • 7 day week
      • 365 days
    • Pi
    • Art
      • Poems & plays in Sanskrit
      • Murals and architecture
    • Classified diseases
      • Surgeries
      • Inoculations
    • Effects of Indian Culture
      • Numeral system still used today
      • Caste system became the new social order
  • Dominant religion in India, over 4,000 yrs. Old
  • No direct trace to one founder, collection of ideas including the idea of reincarnation brought with the early Aryans
  • Several religious texts, (Vedas, Upanishads)
  • Moksha – state of perfect understanding or the relationship between atman (individual soul) and Brahman (world soul), cannot be achieved in one lifetime
  • Karma – good or bad, follows you into the next life
    • Supports the caste system
      • No possibility of movement within this lifetime
      • How does this work? Why would they follow it?
  • Developed as a response of the lower castes who resented Hinduism inequality
  • Siddhartha Gautama (prince)
    • Isolated to fulfill prophecy
    • No world experiences, saw religious life as the refuge from human suffering
    • Wandered 6 years looking for enlightenment
  • Self-sacrifice, Eight fold path (Middle Way)
    • Four Noble Truths
    • Middle of desire and self-denial
    • Nirvana
    • reincarnation
  • Not popular in India – spread to Central Asia through missionaries and along the Silk Road
zhou dynasty
Zhou Dynasty
  • Nobles rule through feudalism
  • Established Confucianism and Daoism
  • Mandate of Heaven
    • The gods gave the right to rule
    • Bad things happened as a sign that ancestral spirits were unhappy with the current ruler
    • The leader must lead by ability and virtue
    • The dynasty’s leadership must be justified by succeeding generations
    • The mandate could be revoked by negligence and abuse; the will of the people was important
chinese philosophies
Chinese Philosophies

Confucianism (Confucius)

  • Developed as a response to social problems, later became the basis of the Chinese govt. including civil service exams
  • five relationships Ruler/subject
    • Father/son
    • Husband/wife
    • Older brother/younger brother
    • Friend/friend
  • Filial piety – respect for parents and elders
  • Analects
  • Bureaucracy - trained civil service based on education
  • not a religion, an ethical system


  • Laozi
  • search for knowledge and understanding of nature
    • Universal force called the Dao
  • Students encouraged to pursue scientific studies
qin dynasty1
Qin Dynasty
  • Shi Huangdi
    • Autocracy
    • Centralization
    • Legalist – uniform laws, currency, weights and measures
    • Great Wall – work…or Die
  • Legalism – harsh laws to maintain order
  • Yin/Yang – feminine and masculine qualities, natural rhythms of life
  • Establishes a centralized govt.
    • Confucian principles
    • Complex bureaucracy with scholar leaders
    • Lowers taxes, softens harsh punishments
    • Brings peace and stability
    • Civil service exams
    • Created paper, ceramics, advanced silk weaving
    • Established Silk Road
    • One month of labor or military service each year
    • Built roads, canals, irrigation ditches, etc…
  • Family
    • Many children
    • Women treated well and influential, but subordinate to men
    • Arranged marriages
    • Wealthy sons could join the govt., daughters married wealthy
silk road
Silk Road
  • Stretched from China to Rome
collapse of han
Collapse of Han
    • Govt. corruption and instability
    • Too large to govern effectively
    • Invasions (Mongolians)
    • Social inequality (rich/poor gap)
  • Conquered people were encouraged to assimilate into Chinese culture
    • Agriculture is the most important job
    • Chinese farmers sent into newly colonized areas
  • Taxes paid by peasants and merchants
    • Poor inheritance laws
      • Forced division
      • High debts = loss of land = higher taxes
  • Peasant Revolts
    • Decline of morals/values
    • Unemployment and inflation
    • Decline of cities