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History of printing – movable type

By | 2017-07-27T17:44:08+00:00 July 27th, 2017|China, Literature|

Wong Jei's block-printed scroll, 868 AD For four thousand years after the invention of writing in Iraq, all writing was done by hand, a character at a time. When people needed a copy of a scroll, they had to pay a scribe to copy it out for them. Of course this made scrolls very expensive. [...]

Who invented paper? Ancient China

By | 2017-07-27T16:22:52+00:00 July 27th, 2017|China, Literature, Science|

Early Chinese paper Since the invention of writing, people had been trying to come up with something easier to write on than papyrus or parchment, and also something easier and cheaper to make. But it took 3000 years to come up with paper! Paper was invented around 100 BC in China. In 105 AD, under the Han Dynasty emperor Ho-Ti, a government [...]

Where are the Himalaya Mountains? India

By | 2017-06-25T03:00:25+00:00 June 25th, 2017|China, Geology, India|

Himalaya Mountains About 55 million years ago, plate tectonics made the land that is now India break off from what is now Africa. At this time, the first modern mammals like rats and guinea pigs were evolving, and most of the Earth was covered in forests. For five million years India floated slowly [...]

Who invented playing cards? China

By | 2017-10-14T16:33:39+00:00 June 23rd, 2017|China, Games, What|

An early playing card (Ming Dynasty, ca. 1500 AD) People in T'ang Dynasty China made the first playing cards, about 800 AD. They used their new material, paper, to make the cards, and they called their game "the leaf game". The emperor's daughter, Princess Tongchang, played cards with her husband's family in the [...]

Where does rice come from? China

By | 2017-06-23T00:01:18+00:00 June 23rd, 2017|China, Food|

A bowl of brown rice Rice is a kind of grain, or grass, like wheat, millet, or barley, that provides carbohydrates to people who eat its seeds. Rice grows wild in south-east Asia. People probably first began to farm rice in southern China, about 6000 BC. From there, people learned how to grow rice [...]

Where do peaches come from? China

By | 2017-06-22T21:28:34+00:00 June 22nd, 2017|China, Food|

Peaches growing on a peach tree China was the first home of peaches. Peaches are related to almonds and apples, but apples and almonds grew further west, and peaches grew further east. People in southern China have been eating peaches since at least 1000 BC, and probably as early as 4000 BC. Many [...]

Where do oranges and lemons come from?

By | 2017-06-22T14:17:45+00:00 June 22nd, 2017|China, Food|

A type of citron called Buddha's Hand The first wild ancestors of oranges and lemons probably evolved in Australia and New Guinea. The first people probably began eating them soon after they arrived in Australia, about 30,000 BC. As early as the Stone Age, people were eating citron fruits in China, too. Citron [...]