By Marcie Flinchum Atkins
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Extra resources for Ancient China
Some of the vessels had legs on the bottom so a flame could be placed under the legs to warm the food. Other vessels for wine were in the shapes of animals. People during the Zhou dynasty used bronze to make boxes for food offerings for their This bronze deer was uncovered in Qin Shihuangdi’s tomb. indd 53 11/5/14 4:20 PM ancestors. They also made ceremonial tools and weapons. These bronze items were meant for ceremonial uses, not as everyday tools. 1 Ancient Chinese artisans also worked with jade.
Ancient Chinese culture depended on agriculture, and agriculture depended on the calendar. Planting and harvesting activities centered on the solar and lunar cycles recorded on ancient Chinese calendars. In the thousands of years of Chinese history, different dynasties from the Han to the Qin observed the solar and lunar positions and calculated the revolution of the earth around the sun. The ancient Chinese calendar had 12 months in a year and 29 to 30 days in a month, with a total of 354 days.
One legend says that it started as early as the Shang dynasty by an empress who had a deformed foot. The practice was banned in 1912. indd 44 11/5/14 4:20 PM activities still popular today. Common pastimes included soccer, card games, and playing with yo-yos. Ancient China is credited with inventing the game of soccer. The sport originated in the Shandong Province of eastern China in the 200s or 100s BCE. The ancient Chinese called the game cuju. It was played for fun and during military exercises.