CnNWei*

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Phase I Variables (polity-based)

General variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner ♥

♠ Original name ♣ Northern Wei ♥

♠ Alternative names ♣ Toba Dynasty; Bei-Wei Dynasty; Toba ♥

387-534 CE: "Toba dynasty of Northern Wei in north China."[1]

Tuoba kingdom "changed its name from Dai to Wei in 386."[2]

Tuoba tribe changed its name to Yuan (modelled on the aristocratic Western Jin) when capital moved south to Luoyang [3]

496 CE "Xiaowendi changed the royal surname to Yuan."[4]

Toba "is a modern Chinese pronunciation of a middle Chinese distortion of the ancient word Tabgach..." [5]

"Bei-Wei Dynasty (Northern Wei, 386-538)." [6]

♠ Peak Date ♣ 439 CE ♥ Tuoba Tao 430s CE campaigns against independent states in North China. E.g. Xiongnu kingdom of Xia and Xiongnu Northern Liang. Xia defeated in 431 CE. Northern Yan defeated 436 CE. Northern Liang defeated 439 CE. "With the conquest of Northern Liang in 439 CE, Tuoba Tao finally succeeded in uniting all of China north of the Yellow River for the first time since the collapse of Fu Jian's empire more than half a century before."[7]


Temporal bounds

♠ Duration ♣ 386-534 CE ♥

NB: includes Northern, Eastern, and Western Wei periods

Tuoba homelands around modern city of Datong. Between 304-314 CE Tuoba Yilu assisted Jin governor of Bing province with cavalry forces. "As a reward for his efforts, Yilu was ceded control of five counties by the Jin court and given the title Prince of Dai (a traditional appellation for the North Shanxi region." [8] = 314 CE start date?

♠ Degree of centralization ♣ unitary state ♥

♠ Supra-polity relations ♣ alliance ♥

434 CE marriage alliance with Rouran. [9]

Erzhu clan allied with government to suppress 526-527 CE rebellions. Previously part of the Xiongnu tribal confederacy. They were living under "their own tribal organization" a pastoral lifestyle. Early 6th century estimated at 8,000 families. Possessed cattle, sheep, camels and horses, "counted by the valley" due to the vastness of their stocks. [10]

Alliance between Tuoba of Wei and Murong of Yan ended 391 CE. [11]

Supra-cultural relations

♠ preceding (quasi)polity ♣ Dai ♥ "predecessor Dai was conquered by the Former Qin" then "revived by Tuoba Gui n 386 in the wake of the battle of the Fei River, with Shengle ... as its capital, and was soon renamed [Northern] Wei." [12]
♠ relationship to preceding (quasi)polity ♣ continuity ♥ "predecessor Dai was conquered by the Former Qin" then "revived by Tuoba Gui n 386 in the wake of the battle of the Fei River, with Shengle ... as its capital, and was soon renamed [Northern] Wei." [13]
♠ succeeding (quasi)polity ♣ Western Wei ♥
♠ Supracultural entity ♣ Xianbei ♥ "Northern Wei was founded by the Tuoba, a branch of the Xianbei" [14]East Central Asian nomadic tribes. However, Northern Wei also, through Chinese majority population, interacted with the Chinese supra-cultural entity. This was most important toward the end of the era whilst the Nomadic supra-cultural interaction had preeminence at the beginning.
♠ scale of supra-cultural interaction ♣ [6,000,000-9,000,000] ♥ km squared. Cultural diffusion, trade and warfare. Figure increases the maximum area of the Northern Wei state to include some of the Western Asian steppe (modern Mongolia). However, Northern Wei also, through Chinese majority population, interacted with the Chinese supra-cultural entity. This was most important toward the end of the era whilst the Nomadic supra-cultural interaction had preeminence at the beginning.

♠ Capital ♣ Shengle; Pingcheng; Luoyang ♥

First capital at Shengle under Gui. Gui "declared himself Prince of Wei before he assumed the imperial mantle in the new capital Pingcheng in early 399 CE." [15]

Pingcheng capital from 398 CE. [16]

Pingcheng (or Datong, in Shanxi).[17]

In the decade after the move of the capital to Luoyang "walls and palaces were built and populations transferred from Pingcheng and other centers in North China."[18]

Building of Luoyang began 493 CE and capital moved there by Xiaowendi 494 CE.[19]

"Having been in ruins from 311, Luoyang came back to life when Xiaowendi moved his capital there from Pingcheng in 494 as part of his overall strategy to sinify Tuoba institutions."[20]

♠ Language ♣ Chinese; Xianbei ♥ Use of Xianbei at court by Xiaowendi was banned after 495 CE.[21] "The Toba were a Mongol-speaking tribe of non-Chinese Buddhists..." [22]

General Description

The Northern Wei dynasty (Tuoba or Bei Wei) unified northern China during the Northern and Southern dynasties period.[23] Before unification under the Northern Wei, the northern region was ruled by the Sixteen Barbarian States that had risen up when the Western Jin fled to the south.[24] The Northern Wei conquered Northern Yan and Northern Liang to unify the north.[25] During Northern Wei rule, Tuoba continued to expand its territory. By 439 CE the dynasty controlled Henan, Hebei, and parts of Shaanxi, Manchuria, Gansu, and Sichuan.[26] At its peak the territory of the Northern Wei expanded from the Tarim Basin to the Yellow Sea, and from the northern steppe to edge of territory of the Southern dynasties.[27] In 500 CE, the Northern Wei territory encompassed 1.7 million square kilometers.[28]

The rulers of the Northern Wei belonged to the Tuoba tribe of the Xianbei northern steppe federation.[29] The Tuoba language was close to Turkish, and the non-Han Chinese rulers were first seen as foreign invaders.[30] In the late 400s the Tuoba Sinicized their customs, language, and government, and moved their capital to Luoyang.[31] Buddhism was upheld as a state religion for most of the Northern Wei. The Buddhist caves of Yungang and Longmen were constructed during the period.[32] In the early 500s, Luoyang had over one thousand monasteries and number of mansions and large palaces.[33]

The fall of the Northern Wei was due to a civil war caused by rebellions in garrisons in the northern frontier[34] The rival army factions spilt the dynasty into Eastern and Western Wei in 535 CE.[35]

Population and political organization

In the Northern Dynasties, nobles and landowners often had vesting holdings with dependent servants and slaves who did not pay taxes.[36] The Northern Wei government attempted to break up these large holdings to reduce the power of provincial nobles. The government deported over 400,000 dependent peasants to unused land near the first capital of Pingcheng. [37] The Northern Wei also instituted an equal-fields system in which the state owned all land and individuals were given certain allotments for life.[38]

In the late 400s, the Northern Wei moved the capital to Luoyang and began to create a more Chinese-style state.[39] The Tuoba relied on Chinese civil servants to assist with governance.[40]

The population of the Northern Wei dynasty was 32 million in 500 CE.[41] The second Wei capital of Luoyang had a population of 600,000 at its peak.[42]

Social Complexity variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner ♥

Social Scale

♠ Polity territory ♣ 500,000: 400 CE; 1,773,000: 500 CE ♥ in squared kilometers 500,000: 400 CE; [1,200,000-1,300,000]: 425 CE; 2,000,000: 450 BC; [1,900,000-1,850,000]: 475 CE; 1,773,000: 500 CE; [1,700,000-1,650,000]: 525 CE; 1,545,000: 550 CE (in squared kilometers) [43]


♠ Polity Population ♣ 32,000,000: 500 CE ♥ People.

"On the eve of the Six Garrisons revolt [in 523], Northern Wei had a registered population of approximately 5,000,000 households and 32,000,000 individuals."[44]

Storing this data here until I create pages for these polities

Western Han (end): 57,000,000. Sui Dynasty: 46,000,000. Tang (height of power 742 CE): 49,000,000.[45]

♠ Population of the largest settlement ♣ 600,000 ♥ Inhabitants.

Luoyang grew to a population of 600,000. [46]

Hierarchical Complexity

♠ Settlement hierarchy ♣ [5-6] ♥ levels. Perhaps 5-6 levels, taking up earlier imperial modes? (there seems to be a similar division into central court/capital city, prefecture, commandery, districts and villages as in earlier times; maybe more after 486 CE reforms.

1. Capital

2.
3.
4.
5.


"Li Ping (2000, 59) has noted that the Northern Wei, after establishing its capital at Pingcheng (modern Datong) in 398, divided the Sang'gan River basin of northern Shanxi into the Inner Capital District, which would include the capital city and the central basin area (jinei). This zone would be inhabited by the bulk of the settled farming population, Tuoba and related households and probably a large portion of the central army cavalry units, not to mention the palace guard units. The Outer Capital District, which would include the hills and mountains surrounding the basin area (jiwai) would be settled by nomadic and semi-nomadic tribal and clan groups who were never completely de-tribalized. Together these two zones would comprise the Capital District (dianfu). These two zones were administered by Eight Councillors (babu diafu) and Eight Chieftains (babu dashuai), respectively." [47]


♠ Administrative levels ♣ 6 ♥ levels. This number is equal to the number of levels in both the provincial government and the outer court, plus the Khan.

1. Khan

inscription discovered at an ancestral temple in Inner Mongolia shows early Tuoba Xianbei rulers used the title "Khan." However, this inscription was written in Chinese characters. [48]
the guoren was initially the ruling clan then later "widened to include the elites of many of the defeated peoples."[49]

_Central court_

At this time the typical post-Han central government bureaucracy consisted of a Royal Secretariat (shangshu tai), which had boards headed by presidents (shangshu). This later became a Department of State Affairs (shangshu sheng). [50]

_Inner Court_

Political and military power concentrated in the "inner court" which was almost totally made up of Xianbei. Inner court made decisions in consultation with the king. Some powerful officials called directors (ling) could function simultaneously in both inner and outer courts. [51]

2. Chancellory, lead by shizhong (Palace Attendant)
Had direct access to king as a companion/advisor. [52]
3.

_Outer Court_

Department of State Affairs[53]

At the central court the Chinese style Department of State Affairs along with the Secretariat (less so regarding the Chancellory) were mostly manned by Chinese courtiers in what has been referred to as the Northern Wei "outer court", though, the highest ranking members of the Department of State Affairs could very well be Xianbei."[54]

2. Board of works [55] lead by a president (shangshu) [56]
or lead by (Xianbei) directors? - is this same thing?
3. Qibu (Bureau of Works) lead by a ?
Northern Wei: "Bureau of Works, under the Board of Works."[57]
4. lower levels, scribes etc?
5. lower levels, scribes etc?
2. Qibing (Board of War)[58] lead by a president (shangshu) [59]
or lead by (Xianbei) directors? - is this same thing?
3. lower levels, scribes etc?
4. lower levels, scribes etc?
5. lower levels, scribes etc?
2. Other boards (Justice, Personnel, Revenue, Rites)
3. lower levels, scribes etc?
4. lower levels, scribes etc?
5. lower levels, scribes etc?

_Capital District_

Pingcheng Capital District (dianfu)[60]

2. Inner Capital District (jinei) - Eight Councillors (babu diafu)[61]
3. Outer Capital District (jiwai) - Eight Chieftains (babu dashuai)[62]

_Provincial government_

"Matsushita Kennichi has pointed out the existence of very early Northern Wei offices of Northern Chief and Southern Chief (beibu daren, nanbu daren) appointed directly by the throne and charged with maintaining surveillance over re-located tribal peoples in the Sang'gan river basin and its environs. Matsushita argues that this system remained in place from 386-398, and following the establishment of Pingcheng as the Northern Wei capital, was subsequently supplanted by the more elaborate arrangement of the Eight Councillors and Eight Chieftains. However, the administrative bailiwick remained the same and was later directly absorbed by the Northern and Southern Boards." [63]

2. Northern Board (beibu) - Director of Northern Board (beibu shangshu)
Northern Board (beibu) and Southern Board (nanbu). Director of Southern Board (nanbu shangshu). Four out of twelve of the heads were Chinese, whereas all the Directors of Northern Board were Xianbei. [64]
"Northern Wei did not have have standard Chinese style administrative units on its northern borders until the reign of Xiaowendi and later - these areas tended to be governed by garrison commanders. " [65]
2. Southern Board (nanbu) - Director of Southern Board (nanbu shangshu)
Northern Board (beibu) and Southern Board (nanbu). Four out of twelve of the heads were Chinese, whereas all the Directors of Northern Board were Xianbei. [66]
"Until 493 the Northern Wei regime formally functioned as an apartheid conquest dynasty. Conquered Chinese areas were generally left to be governed by customary law and inherited Chinese administrative institutions, but these local and provincial structures were assigned as many as two levels of Xianbei surveillance officials placed at all levels (Yan Yaozhong 1990, 77-83). Thus a prefect's office could very well comprise could very well comprise a member of a local elite Chinese family (the rule of avoidance was not strictly adhered to at this time), a Xianbei official, and, if the Xianbei official was not fluent in spoken or written Chinese, a Chinese courtier from the central court would be present as well."[67]
3. Zhou (prefecture) headed by a mu or cishi (prefect) [68]
"prefectures, headed by a mu or cishi (prefect). In the post-Western Jin era, the zhou and jun were greatly reduced in size ... So "prefecture" in lieu of "province" is used to translate zhou while "commandery" in lieu of "region" is used to translate jun. From Han to Six Dynasties, the zhou (province or prefecture) served as the highest-level local government, above the jun (region or commandery)." [69]
4. Jun (commandery)[70] lead by a governor [71]
"In the post-Western Jin era, the zhou and jun were greatly reduced in size ... "commandery" in lieu of "region" is used to translate jun. From Han to Six Dynasties, the zhou (province or prefecture) served as the highest-level local government, above the jun (region or commandery)." [72]
5. Xian (county) headed by a ling (magistrate)[73]
During the Han to Six Dynasties period the xian was the "lowest of the tri-level system (zhou [provinces or prefectures], jun [regions or commanderies], and xian [counties]), headed by a magistrate (ling). [74]

_Three Chiefs System from 486 CE_

"A system of mutual surveillance to facilitate tax collection ad fulfillment of corvee and military duties. Proposed by Li Chong ..., it was first promulgated in Northern Wei in 486 in the name of Xiaowendi. Replacing the system of clan masters (zongzhu ...) at the grassroots level, it organized every five households into units known as lin (neighbourhoods). Five lin constituted a li ... (village), and five li, a dang ... (community). The heads (zhang) of lin, li, and dang were the three chiefs." [75] Also known as the Taihe reforms. [76]

6. dang (community) lead by a zhang (chief)
Constituted 125 households (five li) [77] perhaps 750 people
7. li (village) lead by a zhang (chief)
Constituted 25 households (five lin) [78] perhaps 150 people
8. lin (neighbourhoods) lead by a zhang (chief)
Constituted five households [79] perhaps 30 people?

_Subject peoples (self-governing)_

2. Xianbei were among other northern people "subject to the Wei rulers" who "continued to speak their ancestral languages" and remained herders.[80]
2. Erzhu clan allied with government to suppress 526-527 CE rebellions. Previously part of the Xiongnu tribal confederacy. They were living under "their own tribal organization" a pastoral lifestyle. Early 6th century estimated at 8,000 families. Possessed cattle, sheep, camels and horses, "counted by the valley" due to the vastness of their stocks. [81]


♠ Religious levels ♣ 2 ♥ levels.

_Daoism_

"Organized religion emerged in Daoism with the founding of its first church - the Wudoumidao (the Way of Five Pecks of Rice) or Tianshidao (the Way of the Celestial Masters) - in Sichuan in Eastern Han in the early second century AD. In the Six Dynasties period, Tianshidao still existed, but there was no clear line of transmission, In the north, Kou Qianzhi of Northern Wei, as a self-claimed successor to Tianshidao, made a forceful effort to promote Daoism at court." [82]

1. Celestial Master

There was a Celestial Master at Pingcheng.[83]
It was "standard practice" for new emperors to take part in a "Daoist ritual to receive talisman registers."[84]
2. ?

_Buddhism_

"After its official entry in the Han, Buddhism came to dominate both north and south China during the Six Dynasties period." [85]

1. Emperor (from 460 CE)

"Adopting Confucianism as the state religion was not acceptable to many nobles of the Northern Wei royal lineage, who took pride in their steppe traditions, nor was it appealing to their Chinese subjects. Buddhism was the obvious choice. From 460 on, the Northern Wei emperor began to have huge statues of the Buddha carved near the capital, Pingcheng (present-day Yungang, in the northern part of present Shanxi Province. Those statues, monuments marking the eastern end of the Silk Road, represented the reincarnations of the current and former rulers of the Northern Wei. Through these carvings, the Northern Wei emperors declared themselves the representatives of the Buddha and therefore the legitimate rulers of China."[86]
2. ?

_Confucianism_

Construction of Confucian temple late fifth century, Empress Dowager and Xiaowen. [87]


♠ Military levels ♣ [5-6] ♥ levels.


Multiple levels of hierarchy: "In addition to the headquarters fortress, each garrison controlled a network of lesser outposts (shu) and might also have military authority over surrendered tribal groups occupying the nearby grazing lands."[88]

1. King

2. Qibing (Board of War)[89] lead by a president (shangshu) [90]
3. Generals?
4. Officers?
5. Zhen (territorial garrison) lead by a zhenjiang (commander) [91]
"often set up at prefectural, commandery or county level, where the commander (zhenjiang) concurrently held the position of prefect, commandery governor, or county magistrate. It was also set up as an independent garrison."[92]
6. Individual soldier

Professions

♠ Professional military officers ♣ present ♥ Palace guard command called dianzhong shangshu. [93]

Northern Wei "re-established the old Han system of frontier garrisons supported by agricultural colonies."[94]

♠ Professional soldiers ♣ inferred absent♥ "To counter the Rouran threat, the Wei rulers had established a dozen major garrisons during the first half of the fifth century."[95]

"... begun during the Tang dynasty... The rise of religious professionals and soldiers as clearly separate groups was contrary to the previous normative view of society divided into knights (shi, the term that would later be applied to the literati or gentry), farmers, artisans and merchants."[96]

♠ Professional priesthood ♣ inferred absent ♥

There was a Celestial Master at Pingcheng.[97] It was "standard practice" for new emperors to take part in a "Daoist ritual to receive talisman registers."[98]

"... begun during the Tang dynasty... The rise of religious professionals and soldiers as clearly separate groups was contrary to the previous normative view of society divided into knights (shi, the term that would later be applied to the literati or gentry), farmers, artisans and merchants."[99]

Bureaucracy characteristics

♠ Full-time bureaucrats ♣ present ♥

Taihe Reforms 472-492: "They included procedures for evaluating and promoting regional and local officials; graded official salaries..."[100]

♠ Examination system ♣ absent ♥ "Before the Northern Sung, the principal means of entry into the social and political elite was by official recommendation or kinship relations." [101]

♠ Merit promotion ♣ inferred absent ♥

"The regimes which followed the Han recruited their civilian and military officials from the hereditary aristocracy (the bureaucracy open to talent was an innovation of the Sui and T'ang era)."[102]

"The Tuoba ... awarded rank to anyone who raised the appropriate number of men at his own expense."[103]

"Wei leaders proved more skillful than other barbarian rulers in winning the loyalty of the defeated peoples. Like many of their predecessers such as Shi Le, the Wei rulers distinguished between a core element in their state, the so-called "compatriots" (guoren), and the mass of ordinary subjects. Almost all military commands and other positions of real power and authority were held by compatriots." [104]

However, what does this argue?

Dai Wei Hong. 2010. Investigation of the Merit System of the Northern Wei Dynasty

♠ Specialized government buildings ♣ present ♥

For example, buildings of the central government, such as the Department of State Affairs (shangshu sheng). [105]

Law

♠ Formal legal code ♣ present ♥

"The Jin code (known as the Taishi code) dominated the legal systems of the Northern Wei and the Southern Dynasties."[106]

Taihe Reforms 472-492 CE "included procedures for evaluating and promoting regional and local officials; graded official salaries; a law code..."[107]

♠ Judges ♣ inferred present ♥ "Throughout China's imperial history, local administrators exercised judicial as well as executive powers in their areas, and routine trial and punishment was, in Sui as in other dynasties, part of their regular duties." [108] “[Emperor Xiaowen] promoted Confucian learning, modeled the Northern Wei bureaucratic system and legal system after the Han dynasty as protocol for court proceedings and rituals.” [109]

♠ Courts ♣ inferred present ♥ "Throughout China's imperial history, local administrators exercised judicial as well as executive powers in their areas, and routine trial and punishment was, in Sui as in other dynasties, part of their regular duties." [110] “[Emperor Xiaowen] promoted Confucian learning, modeled the Northern Wei bureaucratic system and legal system after the Han dynasty as protocol for court proceedings and rituals.” [111]

♠ Professional Lawyers ♣ ♥

Specialized Buildings: polity owned

♠ irrigation systems ♣ inferred present ♥ polity owned? Presumably. Under "equal fields" system state owned all farmland. Equal fields system present 485-780 CE. [112]
♠ drinking water supply systems ♣ ♥ Unknown. "Besides the more well-known extensive irrigation works and man-made transport canals linking up the major rivers, the provision of water supplies to its cities formed the third important element of China's ancient water civilization."[113] Emperor Wu of the Western Han ordered the Kunming Reservoir to provide water for Chang'an which was delivered to the city via "water-transfer channels." One channel provided water to canals other "specifically for supplying water within the city."[114] This system was damaged by civil wars at the end of the Han dynasty and the water became unsuitable for drinking.[115]
♠ markets ♣ inferred present ♥ Luoyang was created with three markets.[116] Pingcheng had markets. [117] Since the capital was newly created presumably these markets were polity-owned?
♠ food storage sites ♣ inferred present ♥ Food storage: "when the commander at Huaihuang refused to distribute relief grain in the summer of 523 he was murdered by the people of the garrison." [118]

Transport infrastructure

♠ Roads ♣ present ♥ "The communications system used by the Tuoba created a kingdom of great commercial and artistic wealth. It was a precursor of the system used by Chinngis and Ogodei." [119]
♠ Bridges ♣ present ♥ Constructed by Monasteries [120]
♠ Canals ♣ ♥
♠ Ports ♣ inferred present ♥

Special purpose sites

♠ Mines or quarries ♣ inferred present ♥

Information

Writing System

♠ Mnemonic devices ♣ present ♥ The earliest known written documentation of the Chinese abacus dates to the 2nd century BC [121]
♠ Nonwritten records ♣ present ♥
♠ Written records ♣ present ♥
♠ Script ♣ present ♥
♠ Non-phonetic writing ♣ present ♥ Chinese.
♠ Phonetic alphabetic writing ♣ present ♥ "A Danish linguist named Vilhelm Thomsen was the first to decipher the Tuoba phonetic system, late in the nineteenth century (1892-96)." [122]

Kinds of Written Documents

♠ Lists, tables, and classifications ♣ present ♥ e.g. Census.
♠ Calendar ♣ present ♥ Since ancient times the Chinese used astronomical calculations to predict equinoxes and seasons. Sixty-day divinatory calendar from Shang era "that is still in widespread use." Babylonians may have been "the original inspiration for the Chinese soli-lunar calendar." [123]
♠ Sacred Texts ♣ present ♥ Buddhist scriptures.
♠ Religious literature ♣ present ♥ 522 CE "Song Yun returned from India with 170 Buddhist sutras."[124] Tuoba Tao was advised "by the pro-Daoist scholar of Han descent Cui Hao". [125]
♠ Practical literature ♣ present ♥ Architectural plans e.g. Luoyang: "Li Chong of Han descent was the master planner of the city, which received much influence from Jiankang, the capital of Qi in the south, through architect Jiang Shaoyou."[126]
♠ History ♣ inferred present ♥ Wei Shu (506-572 CE) wrote "Book of Wei" in the 550s CE. The genre also existed earlier in Chinese history.
♠ Philosophy ♣ inferred present ♥
♠ Scientific literature ♣ inferred present ♥ Among literate Chinese.
♠ Fiction ♣ ♥

Money

♠ Articles ♣ present ♥ "were usually collected in kind, that is, in grain and silk or hemp cloth."[127]
♠ Tokens ♣ present ♥ sure I remember reading a reference to tokens - need to check
♠ Precious metals ♣ ♥
♠ Foreign coins ♣ present ♥ "Byzantine gold coin of Anastasius I discovered in suspected tomb of Emperor Jiemin of Northern Wei." [128]
♠ Indigenous coins ♣ inferred present ♥
♠ Paper currency ♣ absent ♥

Postal System

♠ Couriers ♣ present ♥ "The creation of a system of relay postal stations has been credited to Chinngis Khan, but was most effectively employed by Chinngis Khan's successor Ogodei. Ogodei did not invent the system that goes back nearly two thousand years. Athough the Tuoba rulers of what is now northern China had a similar system in the fourth and fifth centuries, it appears to have been implemented already by the Honno, the first steppe empire in history, an empire contemporary with the Roman Empire and ruled by a Turkic tribe." [129]
♠ Postal stations ♣ present ♥ "The creation of a system of relay postal stations has been credited to Chinngis Khan, but was most effectively employed by Chinngis Khan's successor Ogodei. Ogodei did not invent the system that goes back nearly two thousand years. Athough the Tuoba rulers of what is now northern China had a similar system in the fourth and fifth centuries, it appears to have been implemented already by the Honno, the first steppe empire in history, an empire contemporary with the Roman Empire and ruled by a Turkic tribe." [130]
♠ General postal service ♣ inferred absent ♥ "The creation of a system of relay postal stations has been credited to Chinngis Khan, but was most effectively employed by Chinngis Khan's successor Ogodei. Ogodei did not invent the system that goes back nearly two thousand years. Athough the Tuoba rulers of what is now northern China had a similar system in the fourth and fifth centuries, it appears to have been implemented already by the Honno, the first steppe empire in history, an empire contemporary with the Roman Empire and ruled by a Turkic tribe." [131] If the Northern Wei ran a nomadic style postal relay station then it may suggest that the general postal service of earlier Chinese civilization had been lost and the service was government only.

Warfare variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner, Jill Levine ♥

Military Technologies

Military use of Metals

♠ Copper ♣ inferred present ♥ In use in previous Chinese polities
♠ Bronze ♣ inferred present ♥ In use in previous Chinese polities
♠ Iron ♣ present ♥ "The "iron clad" Ehruchu owned enormous horse herds and fought as armoured cavalry."[132]
♠ Steel ♣ present ♥ "During the Spring and Autumn period, China developed steel and iron-made weaponry, and as the raw iron castings technique was widely practiced - and the ‘folded hundred times steel’ casting method was on the rise, along with various polishing techniques for steel - Chinese steel weapons were very much on the ascendant."[133] First steel adapted by Chu in 5th century BCE[134], likely spread quickly to other states "As the smiths in time learned the possibilities of their material, and began producing quench-hardened steel swords ... bronze swords could not longer compete and went out of use completely. This seems likely to have occurred all over China by the late third century B.C. at the latest."[135] "As early as the later Han dynasty and the early Jin dynasty, the Chinese were already capable of producing steel."[136] Wootz steel was "being exported from India to China at least as early as the +5th century. … good steel was manufactured in China by remarkably modern methods at least from that time onwards also."[137] First high-quality steel 450 CE.

Projectiles

♠ Javelins ♣ inferred absent ♥ Northern Wei had cavalry based warfare, so javelins seem unlikely
♠ Atlatl ♣ inferred absent ♥ New World weapon, unlikely.
♠ Slings ♣ inferred absent ♥ Better, simple-to-use range weapons available, such as the crossbow.
♠ Self bow ♣ inferred present ♥ 4th Century not necessarily specific to Northern Wei: "horsemen wielded lances, swords and halberds, as well as bows, but horse-archer remained an important aristocratic accomplishment." [138]
♠ Composite bow ♣ inferred present ♥ 4th Century not necessarily specific to Northern Wei: "horsemen wielded lances, swords and halberds, as well as bows, but horse-archer remained an important aristocratic accomplishment." [139] by mid-4th century BCE crossbows used in large numbers on battlefield [140]
cavalry from 4th century BCE [141]
♠ Crossbow ♣ present ♥ by mid-4th century BCE crossbows used in large numbers on battlefield [142]
cavalry from 4th century BCE [143]
♠ Tension siege engines ♣ inferred present ♥ Inferred from use in previous polities.
♠ Sling siege engines ♣ {absent; present} ♥ "early versions of siege crossbows and traction trebuchets may be noted in the accounts of the wars of the Qin and Han dynasties, and appear in the early military writings associated with the name of Mo Zi."[144] "Of the date of the introduction of the counterweight trebuchet to China there can be no doubt. It occurred in 1272, during one of the greatest sieges of Chinese history, at Xiangyang, where the Mongols besieged the Southern Song for five years." [145]
♠ Gunpowder siege artillery ♣ absent ♥ Gunpowder introduced in 900 CE [146]
♠ Handheld firearms ♣ absent ♥ Gunpowder introduced in 900 CE [147]

Handheld weapons

♠ War clubs ♣ inferred present ♥ Erzhu Rong's men "were issued a weapon called the 'miraculous cugel' which may have been a a crouched lance or merely a long club." [148]
♠ Battle axes ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Daggers ♣ inferred present ♥ Used in previous polity
♠ Swords ♣ present ♥ 4th Century not necessarily specific to Northern Wei: "horsemen wielded lances, swords and halberds, as well as bows, but horse-archer remained an important aristocratic accomplishment." [149]
♠ Spears ♣ present ♥ Spears. [150] Lances. 4th Century not necessarily specific to Northern Wei: "horsemen wielded lances, swords and halberds, as well as bows, but horse-archer remained an important aristocratic accomplishment." [151]
♠ Polearms ♣ present ♥ 4th Century not necessarily specific to Northern Wei: "horsemen wielded lances, swords and halberds, as well as bows, but horse-archer remained an important aristocratic accomplishment." [152]

Animals used in warfare

♠ Dogs ♣ absent ♥ Never used in warfare. [153]
♠ Donkeys ♣ inferred present ♥ Used in warfare as pack animals. [154]
♠ Horses ♣ present ♥ The Tuoba's "domination of the open steppe ... allowed them to draw upon ... considerable resources ... Members of defeated tribes were incorporated into the Wei forces, and the steppe also provided the Wei armies with horses in very large numbers."[155]
♠ Camels ♣ present ♥ During campaign against Liu Song: "Tuoba Dao drank only water brought by camel from the North" [156] Never used in warfare, besides as pack animals. [157]
♠ Elephants ♣ suspected unknown ♥

Armor

♠ Wood, bark, etc ♣ inferred present ♥ inferred from previous use in China
♠ Leather, cloth ♣ present ♥ "6th-century guardsmen, Northern Wei or successors. This style of armour is believed to represent leather ... Note the cords which in this case appear to hold the breast plate into position." [158]
♠ Shields ♣ present ♥ Shields. [159]
♠ Helmets ♣ present ♥ "A pictoral representation dated to 357 shows us a fully armored warrior. "The body of the rider is almost completely covered by armor. He wears a plumed helmet that protects the sides and back of the head..."[160]
♠ Breastplates ♣ present ♥ "6th-century guardsmen, Northern Wei or successors. This style of armour is believed to represent leather ... Note the cords which in this case appear to hold the breast plate into position." [161]
♠ Limb protection ♣ present ♥ "A pictoral representation dated to 357 shows us a fully armored warrior. "The body of the rider is almost completely covered by armor. He wears ... chaps."[162]
♠ Chainmail ♣ present ♥ "A pictoral representation dated to 357 shows us a fully armored warrior. "The body of the rider is almost completely covered by armor. He wears ... a habergeon with high neck and shoulder guards..."[163]
♠ Scaled armor ♣ present ♥ "A pictoral representation dated to 357 shows us a fully armored warrior. "The body of the rider is almost completely covered by armor. He wears ... a habergeon with high neck and shoulder guards..."[164]
♠ Laminar armor ♣ present ♥ "A pictoral representation dated to 357 shows us a fully armored warrior. "The body of the rider is almost completely covered by armor. ... The armor was made of lamellar plate, but one cannot say whether of iron or of lacquered leather."[165]
♠ Plate armor ♣ inferred present ♥ Coat of plates cuirasses existed back in warring states times

Naval technology

♠ Small vessels (canoes, etc) ♣ present ♥ May have been used on military expeditions to the south. However, use would not have been extensive or highly complex. In 450 CE Wei Emperor Taiwu vs Song: "The Wei ruler made noises about crossing the river, but this was surely bluff since his men had neither the vessels nor the skills they would need to overcome the Song fleet." "The Northern Wei attempted to use the river vessels, which had been captured when Wang retreated, to block a Song fleet of a hundred boats." [166]
♠ Merchant ships pressed into service ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Specialized military vessels ♣ suspected unknown ♥

Fortifications

♠ Settlements in a defensive position ♣ present ♥ "Not all of the Xianbei were moved south to Luoyang. Large numbers were left along the northern frontier and in the vicinity of the old capital to guard the Wei realm against the Rouran, a tribal confederacy that had emerged to dominate the northern steppe around the beginning of the fifth century. To counter the Rouran threat, the Wei rulers had established a dozen major garrisons during the first half of the fifth century. These stretched in an arc along the northern frontier from Dunhuang at the end of the Gansu corridor in the far northwest to Yuyi directly north of modern Beijing. The sector of the line that covered Pingcheng and the Dai region of northern Shanxi became known as the “Six Garrisons.” These were anchored on the west by Woye garrison on the great northward loop of the Yellow River. To the east of Woye lay Huaishuo (north of modern Baotou), Wuchuan (northwest of Hohhot), Fuming, Rouxuan, and Huaihuang. These positions commanded the swath of grassland south of the Gobi Desert, where invaders coming from the north would otherwise have been able to pasture their tired and hungry horses before attacking the settled lands to the south [167]
♠ Wooden palisades ♣ inferred present ♥ Present for previous polities.
♠ Earth ramparts ♣ present ♥ Up until the Tang and Song Dynasties wide ramparts and ditches were a typical part of the defense system for a fortified town or city.[168]
♠ Ditch ♣ present ♥ Up until the Tang and Song Dynasties wide ramparts and ditches were a typical part of the defense system for a fortified town or city.[169]
♠ Moat ♣ inferred present ♥ Present for previous polities.
♠ Stone walls (non-mortared) ♣ suspected unknown ♥ Earth ramparts rather than stone walls. Up until the Tang and Song Dynasties wide ramparts and ditches were a typical part of the defense system for a fortified town or city." [170] Stone-fronted walls "perhaps dateable to the period," have been found by archaeologists. [171]
♠ Stone walls (mortared) ♣ absent ♥ Earth ramparts rather than stone walls. Up until the Tang and Song Dynasties wide ramparts and ditches were a typical part of the defense system for a fortified town or city. [172]
♠ Fortified camps ♣ inferred present ♥ Present for the previous polity.
♠ Complex fortifications ♣ present ♥ Fortresses.[173] Ditch and wall. "Up until the Tang and Song Dynasties wide ramparts and ditches were a typical part of the defense system for a fortified town or city.[174]
♠ Long walls ♣ 1073: 423 CE; 681: 446 CE ♥ km. "The Northern Wei also built fortifications, including walls, against the Rouran in 423 (667 miles) and 446 (333 miles)." [175]
♠ Modern fortifications ♣ absent ♥


Phase II Variables (polity-based)

Institutional Variables

♠ RA ♣ Jill Levine ♥

Limits on Power of the Chief Executive

Power distributed

♠ Constraint on executive by government ♣ inferred absent ♥ Constraint was informal. "No list of specific written prohibition could tie the hands of the Emperor, though in practice how arbitrary an Emperor could be depended on many intangibles.” [176]
♠ Constraint on executive by non-government ♣ inferred absent ♥ Constraint was informal. On rulers, from noble lineages and ritual specialists, based on cosmological theories. [177] "No list of specific written prohibition could tie the hands of the Emperor, though in practice how arbitrary an Emperor could be depended on many intangibles.” [178]
♠ Impeachment ♣ ♥

Social Mobility

Status

Elite status

♠ elite status is hereditary ♣ present ♥ "The regimes which followed the Han recruited their civilian and military officials from the hereditary aristocracy (the bureaucracy open to talent was an innovation of the Sui and T'ang era)."[179]

Religion and Normative Ideology

♠ RA ♣ Jill Levine; Enrico Cioni ♥

Deification of Rulers

♠ Rulers are legitimated by gods ♣ present ♥ Mandate of Heaven. [180]

♠ Rulers are gods ♣ present ♥ Rulers are divine figures, descendant from deified ancestor spirits, who became representative of / equated with di. [181] Puett points out, though, that the divine nature of the Emperor was something established through his ritual actions, not something he was 'born into'. " There is no claim that, for example, a given ruler was in fact born of Heaven rather than of human parents, or that the lineage of a given ruling dynasty has a closer biological link to Heaven than other lineages. On the contrary, the relations are always defined ex post facto—a ruler takes power and only then, through sacrifice, does he define his ancestral lineage as royal and does he define Heaven as his father."[182]

Normative Ideological Aspects of Equity and Prosociality

♠ Ideological reinforcement of equality ♣ absent ♥ [183]According to traditional Chinese ideology, dating back to the Han Dynasty, men who were well-versed in the Classics (i.e. scholars and state officials) were superior to other social groups - specifically, farmers, artesans, and merchants. However, it is worth noting that it was possible for farmers, artesans and merchants to become literate, and join the ranks of their social superiors. As for Confucianism, strictly speaking it only really promoted hierarchy within the family - there is no indication, in Confucian literature, that social elites are inherently superior to commoners. And all three main Chinese religions - Confucianism, Daoism and Buddhism - required all social classes to follow the same moral code [184] For a slightly different viewpoint: "Confucianism emphasizes not only the domination of the head of state over his officials and subjects but also the domination of male over female, old over young, and officials over their subjects.[185]

♠ Ideological thought equates rulers and commoners ♣ absent ♥ [186] Rulers are divine figures, descendant from deified ancestor spirits, who became representative of / equated with di. [187] Puett points out, though, that the divine nature of the Emperor was something established through his ritual actions, not something he was 'born into'. " There is no claim that, for example, a given ruler was in fact born of Heaven rather than of human parents, or that the lineage of a given ruling dynasty has a closer biological link to Heaven than other lineages. On the contrary, the relations are always defined ex post facto—a ruler takes power and only then, through sacrifice, does he define his ancestral lineage as royal and does he define Heaven as his father."[188]
♠ Ideological thought equates elites and commoners ♣ absent ♥ According to traditional Chinese ideology, dating back to the Han Dynasty, men who were well-versed in the Classics (i.e. scholars and state officials) were superior to other social groups - specifically, farmers, artesans, and merchants. However, it is worth noting that it was possible for farmers, artesans and merchants to become literate, and join the ranks of their social superiors. As for Confucianism, strictly speaking it only really promoted hierarchy within the family - there is no indication, in Confucian literature, that social elites are inherently superior to commoners. And all three main Chinese religions - Confucianism, Daoism and Buddhism - required all social classes to follow the same moral code [189] For a slightly different viewpoint: "Confucianism emphasizes not only the domination of the head of state over his officials and subjects but also the domination of male over female, old over young, and officials over their subjects.[190]

♠ Ideology reinforces prosociality ♣ present ♥ Buddhism reinforced the idea of prosociality, while Daoism and Confucianism focused on self-cultivation. Private donors: “The notion was that a gift could redeem sins committed in this life and therefore reduce or eliminate punishment in the afterlife.” Donors from all classes gave different types of property- land, mills, silk, slaves, coppers, and more. [191] “[Pierre-Sylvain] Regis claimed that Confucius’s basic message was charity, which was deemed universal and reasonable.” [192]

♠ production of public goods ♣ present ♥ In traditional Chinese ideology, it was seen as virtuous to build roads, bridges, etc. [193] Buddhism: “Leading a moral life is seen as having a wider social dimension as well. Establishing public parks, constructing bridges, digging wells and providing a residence for the homeless (see SN 1:1:47; similarly Jat 31) - all these are commended.” [194] Daoism (and, to a lesser extent, Confucianism): “The ‘’Taishang ganying pian’’ is a short anonymous tract (about 1,275 characters), probably composed in the second half of the Northern Song dynasty and traditionally regarded as the first and most paradigmatic morality book (*’’shansu’’). While closely associated with Taosim[...]the ‘’Ganying pian’’ also draws on sources beyond Taoism to present a message geared to a broad audience. [...] The earliest known edition of the ‘’Ganying pian’’ was transmitted with commentary by one Li Changling abou 1165. [...] To accumulate merit, fulfill vows, or perform a recognizably moral service, various eminent figures republished the ‘’Ganying pian’’ with commentaries. While Li Changling stressed the spirit of the Three Teachings (Confucianism, Taism, and Buddhism), scholar-officials like Zhen Dexiu (1178-1235), Hui Dong (1697-1758; ECCP 357-58) and Yu Yue (1821-1906; ECCP 944-45), among others, emphasized its Confucian morality for the masses. [...] As distribution of the ‘’Ganying pian’’, like all morality books, was thought to be a virtue that earned one merit, large and small donations toward its printing were conventional ways of doing good. It is still distributed free in many temples.” [195]

Moralizing Supernatural Powers

♠ Moral concern is primary ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is certain ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing norms are broad ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is targeted ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement of rulers ♣ absent_to_present ♥
♠ Moralizing religion adopted by elites ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing religion adopted by commoners ♣ absent_to_present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement in afterlife ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement in this life ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is agentic ♣ absent ♥

These data were reviewed by expert advisors and consultants. For a detailed description of these data, refer to the relevant Analytic Narratives, reference tables, and acknowledgements page. [196] [197] [198]

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