Ancient China 500 BCE
The Zhou kingdom is fragmented amongst numerous local states, constantly at war with one another.
The state of Qin is the most ruthless in the pursuit of military and administrative efficiency.
The state of Qin has conquered all the other states, and has imposed a harsh regime on the whole of China.
After the death of the First Emperor, chaos engulfed the country. After a few years, however, the Han dynasty came to power.
The Han dynasty has given peace and stability to the huge empire, and expanded its borders.
Between 9 CE and 23 CE a usurper, Wang Mang, ruled China. The Han dynasty was then restored to power.
Non-Chinese invaders have taken control of northern China.
In the north, non-Chinese dynasties rule several kingdoms, while the south forms a single state under a native Chinese dynasty.
In the north, developments are under way which will prepare the ground for the reunification of China.