China, officially the People Republic of China, is a large Asian country and the second largest country in the world. For many hundreds of years the country of China was ruled by emperors and dynasties with many wars and invasions. Towards the end of this period of history there were seven sovereign states with seven kings and seven armies. In 221BC a unified Chinese state, known as Imperial China, was established by the Qin Dynasty who enforced many reforms such as a standardized language and written system. The Qin Dynasty also standardized measurement and currency across the state of China. From 221BC until 1911 many dynasties rose and fell in the country, which created a growing and thriving cultural and economic society. The Qing Dynasty was the last dynasty in Imperial China and during this time civil unrest and war caused the people to look for a new form of government. In 1912 The People’s Republic of China was established.
Who was the first emperor of China?
The First Emperor of China was Qin Shi Huang and he was the man responsible for the Qin Dynasty. Qin Shi Huang had previously been the ruler of the Chinese State of Qin prior to creating a unified China in 221BC. He declared himself to be the first Emperor of China after the unification of the seven states. Qin Shi Huang continued to be emperor of China until his death at age 49 in 210 BC.
Qin Shi Huang had a huge impact on Chinese history, being the instigator of some 2000 years of imperial rule in China. He made huge reforms across the country and is credited with many economic and political reforms. Qin Shi Huang established a national road system and had his hand in the creation of the first Great Wall of China.
Interesting facts about the first Emperor of China
- His real name was Ying Zheng but when he became the leader of unified China he declared himself the First Sovereign Qin Emperor or Qin Shi Huang.
- It is not known whether the first Emperor was the son of King Zhaoxiang of Qin; there are inconsistent stories about his birth and conception.
- Qin Shi Huang became the King of the State of Qin at just 13 years of age.
- At least two assassination attempts where made on the first Emperor’s life whilst he was the King of Qin.