25 votes

How did the First Emperor of Qin "burn the books" prior to the invention of paper?

The Chinese term for the Qin emperor's "burning books and burying scholars alive" is 焚書坑儒 (character by character: burn/book/bury [alive]/followers of Confucius). The character for book or ...
  • 7,158
4 votes

How fast and how far could one travel, by means of horse relay posts, in ancient China in 1500CE?

As it happens, I own a copy of Atlas of World History, Rand McNally, ISBN 0-528-83779-6, and on pages 76-77 it has a map of "the Manchu Empire at its Height" - the Qing Dynasty of China c. ...
  • 18.4k
4 votes

Why is it said that the Qin dynasty was the first to unite China?

It should be noted that to some extent this is a definitional problem. The idea that Qin is the first unification of China is a conventional historical narrative rather than something that can be ...
  • 96.6k
2 votes

Has Sun Tzu ever advocated for something that in modern society is a war crime, or what has Sun Tzu ever said about war crimes?

What Sun Tzu is describing wrt chariots is the SOP in all armies around the world. E.g., Wehrmacht used a lot of captured T-34s: note the cross on the turret. Other armies (and navies!) did the same. ...
  • 26.6k
2 votes

How did the First Emperor of Qin "burn the books" prior to the invention of paper?

Paper was invented in China, traditionally by court official Ts’ai Lun in 105 AD. It was actually invented around 3 centuries earlier, but not used for writing until the 1st century AD. Up until that ...
  • 696

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