Tracing Back the â€œRed Dragonâ€
The history of early Chinese empires is closely interrelated to the country’s emergence as a formidable power house. It started in 221 BC, with the First Emperor of Qin. Subsequently, the Han dynasty took over the power. Then came the Tang dynasty in the third century, which is said to be the â€œGolden Ageâ€ of China due cultural, religious and commercial revolutions.
Through this great imperial history, China has witnessed massive transformation that has paved the way towards becoming an economic epicenter. Currently, China has the largest economy in the world and one of the most influential countries, brushing shoulders with the US, Russia and India. China also has the biggest population in the world (1.3 billion) with India close on the heels (1.28 billion).
Facts About China:
- The modern name â€œChinaâ€ is said have derived from the name of the â€œQinâ€. (pronounced as â€œChinâ€) dynasty.
- Many historians consider that China has the longest continuous civilization. Some of them mark 6000 B.C. as the beginning of Chinese civilization.
- China is the fourth largest country in the world and ranks after Russia, Canada and the U.S.
- â€œFlowery Kingdomâ€. This is another name that China is also known due to extensive farming of fruits and flowers.
- Historians are of the opinion that as the population of Chinese started growing fast, people felt the need of conserving cooking fuel by chopping food into small pieces so that they could cook faster. These small pieces of food eliminated the use of knives and, chopsticks came into the picture. China uses approximately 45 billion chopsticks every year.
- According to the popular belief, tea was discovered in 2737 B.C by the Chinese emperor Shennong. It happened accidentally when a tea leaf had fallen into his boiling water.
- Chinese language has at least seven major variations including Cantonese, Gan, Hakka, Min, Mandarin, Wu and Xiang.
- Martial arts are being practiced as major combat methods throughout China, which primarily originated from ancient farming and hunting methods.
- The First Paper Money in the world was created in China around 1,400 years ago.
- Interestingly, toilet paper was also first made in China towards late 1300s. However, only emperors could use those papers.
- Kites such as â€œPaper Birdsâ€ and â€œAeolian harpsâ€ were also invented in China about 3,000 years ago. Those kites were used to intimidate the enemies in battle. Moreover, Marco Polo (1254-1324) also observed that Chinese people used kites to predict the success of a voyage.
- Cricket fighting is a popular mode of entertainment in China. For many Chinese children, keeping crickets as pets is a fad.
- Dragon is considered one of the four greatest creatures in Chinese mythology. Other creatures are phoenix, tiger and tortoise.
- Giant Pandas roamed China even two to three million years ago. The early Chinese emperors used to keep pandas to keep evil spirits and natural disasters at bay. Pandas also symbolized power and bravery.
- Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year is the most important holiday in China. According to traditional Chinese belief, that every individual person turns one year older on the New Year and, the day is considered as everyone’s birthday.
- â€œThe Great Wall of Chinaâ€ is the longest wall in the world. It is 21,196.18 km (13,170.7 miles) long. The wall was created 2,300 years ago.
- Facebook, Twitter and The New York Times are banned in China since 2009. In addition, having â€œPlayStationâ€ is also illegal there.
- Pearl S. Buck (1892-1973) was the first American woman to win the Nobel Prize. She won the prestigious award for her novels about China.
- By 2020, China could have between 30 million and 40 million men who cannot find wives.
- In 2013, visitors to a Chinese Zoo got angry as the authority tried to pass off a Tibetan mastiff dog as a Lion!