Ming dynasty

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Ming dynasty
Chinese 明朝

The Ming dynasty was a dynasty which ruled China from 1368 until 1644. It was preceded by the Yuan dynasty and followed by the Qing dynasty. It was founded by Zhu Yuanzhang, who led a peasant revolt that overturned the Yuan.

The Ming established its capital at Beijing in 1421. The Ming is known for expansion and exploration, and increasing contacts with Europe. Arts flourished during this period and beautiful blue and white porcelain was made and exported.


Basic Further reading

History of China
Xia c. 2070–c. 1600 BC
Shang c. 1600 – 1046 BC
Zhou 1045–256 BC
Qin 221–206 BC
Han 206 BC – 220 AD
Three Kingdoms 220–280
Jin 265–420
Northern and Southern
Sui 581–618
Tang 618–907
Five Dynasties and
Ten Kingdoms
Song 960–1279
Yuan 1271–1368
Ming 1368–1644
Qing 1644–1911
Republic 1912–1949
People's Republic 1949–present

Advanced bibliography

  • Brook, Timothy. The Confusions of Pleasure: Commerce and Culture in Ming China. U. of California Press, 1998. excerpt and text search
  • Dardess, John W. A Ming Society: T'ai-ho County, Kiangsi, Fourteenth to Seventeenth Centuries. U. of California Press, 1983; uses advanced "new social history" complete text online free
  • Farmer, Edward. Zhu Yuanzhang and Early Ming Legislation: The Reordering of Chinese Society Following the Era of Mongol Rule. E.J. Brill, 1995.
  • Goodrich, L. Carrington, and Chaoying Fang. Dictionary of Ming Biography. (1976).
  • Huang, Ray. 1587, A Year of No Significance: The Ming Dynasty in Decline. (1981). excerpt and text search
  • Mote, Frederick W. Imperial China, 900–1800 Harvard University Press, 1999, 1,136 pages, the authoritative treatment of the Song, Yuan, Ming, and Qing dynasties; excerpt and text search
  • Mote, Frederick W., and Denis Twitchett, eds. The Cambridge History of China. Vol. 7, part 1: The Ming Dynasty, 1368-1644 (1988). 1008 pp. excerpt and text search
  • Schneewind, Sarah. A Tale of Two Melons: Emperor and Subject in Ming China. (2006). excerpt and text search
  • Tsai, Shih-shan Henry. Perpetual Happiness: The Ming Emperor Yongle. (2001). excerpt and text search
  • Twitchett, Denis and Frederick W. Mote, eds. The Cambridge History of China. Vol. 8: The Ming Dynasty, 1368-1644, Part 2. (1998). 1203 pp.; Twitchett, Denis and Frederick W. Mote, eds. The Cambridge History of China. Vol. 8: The Ming Dynasty, 1368-1644, Part 1.