Strengthening the state from within, Qin Shih Huangdi did not disregard his neighbors either. Several hundred thousand Qin warriors laid down their lives during a campaign against the state of Nanyue in the south.
Once a fortune teller predicted: "The Qin Hus, in the north, will be destroyed." The alarmed sovereign sent thousands of people to build a defensive rampart against the "northern savages". All the unjust judges were sent to erect this rampart. This was the beginning of the construction of Wan li chang cheng (ten thousand li wall) - the Great Wall of China. Descending into the valleys and crawling up the mountain steeps, it stretched from west to east. Many generations of Chinese built new walls and towers and renovated old ones.
Qin Shi-huangdi did not know how to restrain his whims. Whenever his army crushed the power of one of the sovereign princes, the Qin ruler ordered to build himself the same palace as that of the defeated sovereign. Roads fenced with ramparts were laid to the palaces located outside the capital.
The tomb of Qin Shi Huangdi can compete with the pyramids of the pharaohs of Ancient Egypt. For 37 years, 720,000 people built it on Mount Li. First, they dug a huge hole in the mountain, getting to the bottom of three keys. Their water was diverted, and the holes were filled with copper. A mound was poured over the pit, planted with trees and shrubs. The bottom of the grave and the walls were lined with lacquered stones and jasper. Models of sacred mountains and mercury-filled likenesses of seas and rivers with gold and silver birds floating on them were placed on the floor. The ceiling was given the appearance of the sky with various luminaries. Together with Qin Shi-huangdi, several hundred girls were put in the grave, including 10 sisters of the sovereign.
Soon after the death of the first Huangdi, civil strife broke out. The winner in the struggle for power was Liu Bang, the volost chief. He laid the foundation for the Early, or Western, Han Dynasty (206 BC - 25 AD).
To stop robbery and bloodshed, to restore the economy destroyed during the internecine strife - these were the aspirations of the emperor of the new dynasty. “For murder - death to the murderer, for wounding and robbery - the appropriate punishment,” read the agreement concluded by Liu Bang with the elders of Qin. He abolished the cruel laws of the Qin Empire. At the end of the war with rivals, Liu Bang immediately disbanded part of the army, allowing the former soldiers to engage in agriculture and handicrafts. At the same time, some of the forced people were released.
The policy of restoring agriculture, carried out in the early stages of the existence of the Han Dynasty, has borne fruit. Previously abandoned and empty lands found owners and became fertile. The improvement of tools and methods of agricultural technology contributed to the rise in agricultural production. Zhao Guo, the “Authorized Grain Prospector”, applied the method of changing fields, i.e. tripartite system. The same Zhao Guo invented a steam plow. Two bulls were harnessed to it, driven by three plowmen. To increase the area of cultivated land, the irrigation system was expanded. River dams and canals were repaired and built. Under the rulers of the Han Dynasty, non-official people got the opportunity to develop minerals. During the reign of Emperor Wen-di, the population was allowed to freely mine salt and iron. The iron-working workshops created by the treasury contributed to the development of the craft. Skilled craftsmen worked in them.
The first rulers of the House of Han had to focus on restoring the economy destroyed by internecine strife. By the time the sovereign Liu Che (140-87 BC) came to the throne, the central power was strengthened, the revival of production replenished the treasury. It was possible to turn forces to expand the borders. Liu Che justified his imperial name - Wu Di, "Sovereign Warrior".
But the wars were devastating for the country. Taxes to the treasury increased. Because of the wars, there were not enough hands to repair irrigation facilities. Floods and droughts have become more frequent. Destruction captured both the village and the city. Already at the end of Wu's reign, the people began to take up arms. Under Wu's successor, riots broke out in the capital itself.
The imperial throne was seized by the dignitary Wang Mang and in 9 AD. proclaimed himself ruler. To strengthen his power, he embarked on reforms. The response to them was powerful popular uprisings - the uprisings of the Red-brows, who painted their eyebrows red to distinguish themselves from the warriors of Wang Mang, and the inhabitants of the green forests (one of the centers of the uprising was in the mountains of Lulin shan, which means "Mountains of green forests").
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