In his Dream Pool Essays or Dream Torrent Essays (夢溪筆談; Mengxi Bitan) of 1088, Shen was the first to describe the magnetic needle compass, which would be used for navigation (first described in Europe by Alexander Neckam in 1187). Shen discovered the concept of true north in terms of magnetic declination towards the north pole, with experimentation of suspended magnetic needles and "the improved meridian determined by Shen's [astronomical] measurement of the distance between the pole star and true north". This was the decisive step in human history to make compasses more useful for navigation, and may have been a concept unknown in Europe for another four hundred years (evidence of German sundials made circa 1450 show markings similar to Chinese geomancers' compasses in regard to declination). (Full article...)
Yao, who was born in Shanghai, started playing for the Sharks as a teenager, and played on their senior team for five years in the CBA, winning a championship in his final year. After negotiating with the CBA and the Sharks to secure his release, Yao was selected by the Rockets as the first overall pick in the 2002 NBA draft. He reached the NBA playoffs four times, and the Rockets won the first-round series in the 2009 postseason, their first playoff series victory since 1997. In July 2011, Yao announced his retirement from professional basketball because of a series of foot and ankle injuries which forced him to miss 250 games in his last six seasons. In eight seasons with the Rockets, Yao ranks sixth among franchise leaders in total points and total rebounds, and second in total blocks. (Full article...)
The July 2009 Ürümqi riots were a series of violent riots over several days that broke out on 5 July 2009 in Ürümqi, the capital city of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR), in northwestern China. The first day's rioting, which involved at least 1,000 Uyghurs, began as a protest, but escalated into violent attacks that mainly targeted Han people. A total of 197 people died, most of whom were Han people or non-Muslim minorities, with 1,721 others injured and many vehicles and buildings destroyed. Many Uyghurs disappeared during wide-scale police sweeps in the days following the riots; Human Rights Watch (HRW) documented 43 cases and said figures for real disappearances were likely to be much higher.
Rioting began following the Shaoguan incident, where false accusations of rape of a Han woman by Uyghur men led to a brawl between ethnic Han and Uyghur factory workers in Shaoguan, resulting in the deaths of 2 Uyghurs who were both from Xinjiang. The Chinese central government alleges that the riots themselves were planned from abroad by the World Uyghur Congress (WUC) and its leader Rebiya Kadeer, while Kadeer denies fomenting the violence in her fight for Uyghur "self-determination". (Full article...)
Rob-B-Hood tells the story of a kidnapping gone wrong in Hong Kong; a trio of burglars consisting of Thongs (Chan), Octopus (Koo) and the Landlord (Hui) kidnap a baby from a wealthy family on behalf of triads. With the Landlord arrested, Thongs and Octopus take care of the baby for a short time, developing strong bonds with him. Reluctant to hand the baby over, the two are forced to protect him from the triads who hired them in the first place. (Full article...)
According to Chinese state media, a group of seven people had travelled to Beijing from Henan province, and five set themselves on fire on Tiananmen Square. In the Chinese press, the event was used as proof of the "dangers" of Falun Gong, and was used to legitimise the government's campaign against the group. (Full article...)
Wong Liu Tsong (January 3, 1905 – February 3, 1961), known professionally as Anna May Wong, was an American actress, considered the first Chinese-American movie star in Hollywood, as well as the first Chinese-American actress to gain international recognition. Her varied career spanned silent film, sound film, television, stage, and radio.
Born in Los Angeles to second-generation Taishanese Chinese-American parents, Wong became infatuated with films and began acting in films at an early age. During the silent film era, she acted in The Toll of the Sea (1922), one of the first films made in color, and in Douglas Fairbanks' The Thief of Bagdad (1924). Wong became a fashion icon and had achieved international stardom in 1924. Wong had been one of the first to embrace the flapper look. In 1934, the Mayfair Mannequin Society of New York voted her the "world's best dressed woman." In the 1920s and 1930s, Wong was acclaimed as one of the top fashion icons. (Full article...)
Wong Kim Ark, who was born in San Francisco in 1873, had been denied re-entry to the United States after a trip abroad, under a law restricting Chinese immigration and prohibiting immigrants from China from becoming naturalized U.S. citizens. He challenged the government's refusal to recognize his citizenship, and the Supreme Court ruled in his favor, holding that the citizenship language in the Fourteenth Amendment encompassed the circumstances of his birth and could not be limited in its effect by an act of Congress. (Full article...)
Lactarius indigo, commonly known as the indigo milk cap, indigo milky, the indigo (or blue) lactarius, or the blue milk mushroom, is a species of agaric fungus in the family Russulaceae. A widely distributed species, it grows naturally in eastern North America, East Asia, and Central America; it has also been reported in southern France. L.indigo grows on the ground in both deciduous and coniferous forests, where it forms mycorrhizal associations with a broad range of trees. The fruit body color ranges from dark blue in fresh specimens to pale blue-gray in older ones. The milk, or latex, that oozes when the mushroom tissue is cut or broken — a feature common to all members of the genus Lactarius — is also indigo blue, but slowly turns green upon exposure to air. The cap has a diameter of 5 to 15cm (2 to 6in), and the stem is 2 to 8cm (0.8 to 3in) tall and 1 to 2.5cm (0.4 to 1.0in) thick. It is an edible mushroom, and is sold in rural markets in China, Guatemala, and Mexico. In Honduras the mushroom is called a chora, and it's generally eaten with egg; generally as a side dish for a bigger meal. (Full article...)
From 1643 to 1650, political power lay mostly in the hands of Dorgon. Under his leadership, the Qing Empire conquered most of the territory of the fallen Ming dynasty (1368–1644), chased Ming loyalist regimes deep into the southwestern provinces, and established the basis of Qing rule over China proper despite highly unpopular policies such as the "hair cutting command" of 1645, which forced Qing subjects to shave their forehead and braid their remaining hair into a queue resembling that of the Manchus. After Dorgon's death on the last day of 1650, the young Shunzhi Emperor started to rule personally. He tried, with mixed success, to fight corruption and to reduce the political influence of the Manchu nobility. In the 1650s, he faced a resurgence of Ming loyalist resistance, but by 1661 his armies had defeated the Qing Empire's last enemies, seafarer Koxinga (1624–1662) and the Prince of Gui (1623–1662) of the Southern Ming dynasty, both of whom would succumb the following year. The Shunzhi Emperor died at the age of 22 of smallpox, a highly contagious disease that was endemic in China, but against which the Manchus had no immunity. He was succeeded by his third son Xuanye, who had already survived smallpox, and who reigned for sixty years under the era name "Kangxi" (hence he was known as the Kangxi Emperor). Because fewer documents have survived from the Shunzhi era than from later eras of the Qing dynasty, the Shunzhi era is a relatively little-known period of Qing history. (Full article...)
Set in the People's Republic of China during the 1990s, the film centers on a 13-year-old substitute teacher, Wei Minzhi, in the Chinese countryside. Called in to substitute for a village teacher for one month, Wei is told not to lose any students. When one of the boys takes off in search of work in the big city, she goes looking for him. The film addresses education reform in China, the economic gap between urban and rural populations, and the prevalence of bureaucracy and authority figures in everyday life. It is filmed in a neorealist/documentary style with a troupe of non-professional actors who play characters with the same names and occupations as the actors have in real life, blurring the boundaries between drama and reality. (Full article...)
Nicole Cooke, gold medalist
The women's road race was one of the cycling events at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China. It took place on 10 August 2008, featuring 66 women from 33 countries. It was the seventh appearance of an Olympic women's road race event and featured a longer course than any of the previous six races. The race was run on the Urban Road Cycling Course (one of Beijing's nine temporary venues), which is 102.6 kilometres (63.8mi) total. Including a second lap around the 23.8km (14.8mi) final circuit, the total distance of the women's race was 126.4km (78.5mi), less than half the length of the men's race.
Heavy rain during most of the race made conditions difficult for the competitors. A group of five broke away during the final lap and worked together until the final sprint, where Nicole Cooke won the race. Cooke earned Great Britain's first medal at these Games and 200th Olympic gold medal overall. Emma Johansson of Sweden and Tatiana Guderzo of Italy, finishing second and third place with the same time as Cooke, received silver and bronze medals respectively. (Full article...)
The primary source of the screenplay is Cadwell's 1975 biography Bruce Lee: The Man Only I Knew. Other sources include Robert Clouse's book Bruce Lee: The Biography and research by Cohen, including interviews with Cadwell and Bruce's son, Brandon Lee. Rather than a traditional biographical film, Cohen decided to include elements of mysticism and to dramatise fight scenes to give it the same tone as the films in which Bruce starred. Dragon was filmed primarily in Hong Kong, Los Angeles and San Francisco. (Full article...)
The Rock Springs massacre, also known as the Rock Springs riot, occurred on September 2, 1885, in the present-day United States city of Rock Springs in Sweetwater County, Wyoming. The riot, and resulting massacre of immigrant Chinese miners by white immigrant miners, was the result of racial prejudice toward the Chinese miners, who were perceived to be taking jobs from the white miners. The Union Pacific Coal Department found it economically beneficial to give preference in hiring to Chinese miners, who were willing to work for lower wages than their white counterparts, angering the white miners. When the rioting ended, at least 28 Chinese miners were dead and 15 were injured. Rioters burned 78 Chinese homes, resulting in approximately $150,000 in property damage (equal to $4.52million in 2020 terms).
Tension between whites and Chinese immigrants in the late 19th-century American West was particularly high, especially in the decade preceding the violence. The massacre in Rock Springs was one among several instances of violence culminating from years of anti-Chinese sentiment in the United States. The Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882 suspended Chinese immigration for ten years, but not before thousands of immigrants came to the American West. Most Chinese immigrants to Wyoming Territory took jobs with the railroad at first, but many ended up employed in coal mines owned by the Union Pacific Railroad. As Chinese immigration increased, so did anti-Chinese sentiment on the part of whites. The Knights of Labor, one of the foremost voices against Chinese immigrant labor, formed a chapter in Rock Springs in 1883, and most rioters were members of that organization. However, no direct connection was ever established linking the riot to the national Knights of Labor organization. (Full article...)
The modern Chinese varieties make frequent use of what are called classifiers or measure words. One use of classifiers is when a noun is qualified by a numeral known as a noun phrase. When a phrase such as "one person" or "three books" is translated into Chinese, it is normally necessary to insert an appropriate classifier between the numeral and the noun. For example, in Standard Mandarin, the first of these phrases would be 一个人yí gè rén, where yī means "one", rén means "person", and gè is the required classifier. There are also other grammatical contexts in which classifiers are used, including after the demonstratives 这 (這) zhè ("this") and 那 nà ("that"); however, when a noun stands alone without any such qualifier, no classifier is needed. There are also various other uses of classifiers: for example, when placed after a noun rather than before it, or when repeated, a classifier signifies a plural or indefinite quantity.
The terms "classifier" and "measure word" are frequently used interchangeably (as equivalent to the Chinese term 量词 (量詞) liàngcí, which literally means "measure word"). Sometimes, however, the two are distinguished, with classifier denoting a particle without any particular meaning of its own, as in the example above, and measure word denoting a word for a particular quantity or measurement of something, such as "drop", "cupful", or "liter". The latter type also includes certain words denoting lengths of time, units of currency, etc. These two types are alternatively called count-classifier and mass-classifier, since the first type can only meaningfully be used with count nouns, while the second is used particularly with mass nouns. However, the grammatical behavior of words of the two types is largely identical. (Full article...)
Shanghai cuisine (Chinese:上海菜; pinyin:Shànghǎi cài; Shanghainese: zaon⁶ he⁵ tshe¹; IPA: [zɑ̃¹¹ he⁴⁴ tsʰᴇ¹¹]), also known as Hu cuisine (simplified Chinese:沪菜; traditional Chinese:滬菜; pinyin:Hù cài; Shanghainese: wu⁶ tshe¹; IPA: [ɦu¹¹ tsʰᴇ⁴⁴]), is a popular style of Chinese food. In a narrow sense, Shanghai cuisine refers only to what is traditionally called Benbang cuisine (本帮菜; 本幫菜; Běnbāng cài; pen⁵ paon¹ tshe⁵; 'local cuisine') which originated in Shanghai. In a broader sense, it refers to complex styles of cooking developed under the influence of neighboring Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces. The dishes within the cuisine need to master the following three elements "color, aroma and taste" (Chinese: "色香味"). Like other cuisines within China, Shanghai cuisine emphasises the use of seasonings, the quality of raw ingredients, and preserving the original flavors of ingredients. The adoption of Western influence in Shanghai cuisine resulted in a unique cooking style known as Haipai cuisine (海派菜). (Full article...)
The Killer (Chinese:喋血雙雄) is a 1989 Hong Kongaction thriller film written and directed by John Woo. The film stars Chow Yun-fat, Danny Lee and Sally Yeh. Chow plays the assassin Ah Jong, who accidentally damages the eyes of the singer Jennie (Sally Yeh) during a shootout. He later discovers that if Jennie does not undergo an expensive operation, she will go blind. To get the money for Jennie, Ah Jong decides to perform one last hit.
After the financial backing from Tsui Hark became problematic following the release of Woo's film A Better Tomorrow 2, Woo had to find backing through Chow Yun-fat's and Danny Lee's financing companies. Woo went into filming The Killer with a rough draft whose plot was influenced by the films Le Samouraï, Mean Streets, and Narazumono. Woo wanted to make a film about honour, friendship and the relationship of two seemingly opposite people. After finishing filming, Woo referred to The Killer as a tribute to directors Jean-Pierre Melville and Martin Scorsese. (Full article...)
Japanese soldiers atop a gate in the walled city of Jinan, May 1928
The Jinan incident (Japanese: 済南事件; formerly romanised Tsinan) or 3 May Tragedy (simplified Chinese:五三惨案; traditional Chinese:五三慘案; pinyin:Wŭsān Cǎn'àn) began as a 3 May 1928 dispute between Chiang Kai-shek's National Revolutionary Army (NRA) and Japanese soldiers and civilians in Jinan, the capital of Shandong province in China, which then escalated into an armed conflict between the NRA and the Imperial Japanese Army. Japanese soldiers had been deployed to Shandong province to protect Japanese commercial interests in the province, which were threatened by the advance of Chiang's Northern Expedition to reunite China under a Kuomintang government. When the NRA approached Jinan, the Beiyang government-aligned army of Sun Chuanfang withdrew from the area, allowing for the peaceful capture of the city by the NRA. NRA forces initially managed to coexist with Japanese troops stationed around the Japanese consulate and businesses, and Chiang Kai-shek arrived to negotiate their withdrawal on 2 May. This peace was broken the following morning, however, when a dispute between the Chinese and Japanese resulted in the deaths of 13–16 Japanese civilians. The resulting conflict resulted in thousands of casualties on the NRA side, which fled the area to continue northwards toward Beijing, and left the city under Japanese occupation until March 1929. (Full article...)
Wu Zuguang (Chinese:吴祖光; pinyin:Wú Zǔguāng; Wade–Giles:Wu Tsu-kuang; 21 April 1917 – 9 April 2003) was a Chinese playwright, film director and social critic who has been called a "legendary figure in Chinese art and literary circles". He authored more than 40 plays and film scripts, including the patriotic drama City of Phoenix, one of the most influential plays during the Second Sino-Japanese War, and Return on a Snowy Night, which is generally considered his masterpiece. He directed The Soul of the Nation, Hong Kong's first colour film, based on his own historical drama Song of Righteousness.
He was also well known as an outspoken critic of China's cultural policies, both of the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Communist governments, and was repeatedly persecuted as a result. He fled to Hong Kong in 1945 to avoid being captured by KMT agents, and returned to Beijing after the foundation of the People's Republic China in 1949. He was denounced as a "rightist" during the Anti-Rightist Campaign and performed hard labour in the "Great Northern Wilderness" for three years, and was again persecuted during the Cultural Revolution. His wife, the celebrated pingju actress Xin Fengxia, refused to divorce him and became disabled after undergoing beatings and penal labour. Despite these ordeals, Wu continued to criticize government censorship and to call for political freedom, and was widely admired for his moral conviction. (Full article...)
Hanpu (Chinese:函普; pinyin:Hánpǔ), later Wanyan Hanpu (Chinese:完顏函普), was a leader of the JurchenWanyan clan in the early tenth century. According to the ancestral story of the Wanyan clan, Hanpu came from Goryeo when he was sixty years old, reformed Jurchen customary law, and then married a sixty-year-old local woman who bore him three children. His descendants eventually united Jurchen tribes into a federation and established the Jin dynasty in 1115. Hanpu was retrospectively given the temple nameShizu (始祖) and the posthumous nameEmperor Yixian Jingyuan (懿憲景元皇帝) by the Jin dynasty.
Chinese historians have long debated whether Hanpu was of Silla, Goryeo, or Jurchen ethnicity. Since the 1980s, they have chiefly argued that he was a Jurchen who had lived in Silla, the state that had dominated the Korean peninsula until it was destroyed by Goryeo in 935. Western scholars usually treat Hanpu's story as a legend, but agree that it hints to contacts between some Jurchen clans and the states of Goryeo and Balhae (a state located between Jurchen lands and Silla until it was destroyed in 926) in the early tenth century. In Korea, a recent KBS history special treated Hanpu as a native Silla man who moved north and settled in Jurchen lands during the demise of Silla. (Full article...)
Given textual and archaeological evidence, it is thought that thousands of Europeans lived in Imperial China during the Yuan dynasty. These were people from countries traditionally belonging to the lands of Christendom during the High to Late Middle Ages who visited, traded, performed Christian missionary work, or lived in China. This occurred primarily during the second half of the 13th century and the first half of the 14th century, coinciding with the rule of the Mongol Empire, which ruled over a large part of Eurasia and connected Europe with their Chinese dominion of the Yuan dynasty. Whereas the Byzantine Empire centered in Greece and Anatolia maintained rare incidences of correspondence with the Tang, Song and Ming dynasties of China, the Holy See sent several missionaries and embassies to the early Mongol Empire as well as to Khanbaliq (modern Beijing), the capital of the Mongol-led Yuan dynasty of China. These contacts with the West were preceded by rare interactions between the Han dynasty and Hellenistic Greeks and Romans.
She was part of a flotilla which toured ports during the summer of 1889. Zhiyuan's sole action was at the Battle of the Yalu River on 17 September 1894 during the First Sino-Japanese War. During the battle, she came under heavy fire from the Japanese forces. Having been holed, Deng ordered for the ship to ram an opposing vessel. She was destroyed as she closed, either by a hit on one of her torpedo tubes, or from a Japanese torpedo. This attack, and the subsequent story of her captain and his dog have become embedded in popular culture in the People's Republic of China. A replica of the Zhiyuan was constructed in 2014 at the Port of Dandong, while the wreck was discovered in 2013 after a 16-year search. (Full article...)
The manifesto was devised after Protestant leaders presented their concerns with religious freedom to Zhou Enlai, the Premier of China. Instead of receiving their report, Zhou demanded them to come up with a statement in support of the new communist leadership. Y. T. Wu and other leftist clergymen espoused the task and presented a draft manifesto that, after some opposition and changes, became a foundational text of Christianity in the new People's Republic. It condemns missionary activities in China as a form of imperialism, pledges loyalty to the communist leadership, and encourages the Church to take up an indigenous Chinese stance toward Christianity. (Full article...)
The city ruins comprise the inner city, the outer city, and several yangmacheng (fortified animal enclosures used as fortresses in wartime). Outside the city walls, the broader archaeological park includes the original site of Ming'an County, more than 2,000 tombs, and the remains of an extensive irrigation system with over 90 kilometres (56mi) of canals. The archaeological park also encompasses a number of Buddhist sites, including the Ta'er Temple, the Eastern Thousand Buddha Caves, Jianquanzi Caves (碱泉子石窟), and Hanxia Caves (旱峡石窟). (Full article...)
The Song dynasty (960–1279 AD) was a culturally rich and sophisticated age for China. It saw great advancements in the visual arts, music, literature, and philosophy. Officials of the ruling bureaucracy, who underwent a strict and extensive examination process, reached new heights of education in Chinese society, while general Chinese culture was enhanced by widespread printing, growing literacy, and various arts.
Appreciation of art among the gentry class flourished during the Song dynasty, especially in regard to paintings, which is an art practiced by many. Trends in painting styles amongst the gentry notably shifted from the Northern (960–1127) to Southern Song (1127–1279) periods, influenced in part by the gradual embrace of the Neo-Confucian political ideology at court. (Full article...)
Image 50Gilin with the head and scaly body of a dragon, tail of a lion and cloven hoofs like a deer. Its body enveloped in sacred flames. Detail from Entrance of General Zu Dashou Tomb (Ming Tomb). (from Chinese culture)
Image 51Photo showing serving chopsticks (gongkuai) on the far right, personal chopsticks (putongkuai) in the middle, and a spoon. Serving chopsticks are usually more ornate than the personal ones. (from Chinese culture)
The President of the Republic of China is the head of state of the Republic of China (ROC).
The Constitution names the president as head of state and commander-in-chief of the Republic of China Armed Forces (formerly known as the National Revolutionary Army). The president is responsible for conducting foreign relations, such as concluding treaties, declaring war, and making peace. The president must promulgate all laws and has no right to veto. Other powers of the president include granting amnesty, pardon or clemency, declaring martial law, and conferring honors and decorations.