Ranking the Ming Dynasty on its contributions USING P.E.R.S.I.A AS A LENS from #6-#1

Ming Dynasty and it's intellectual achievements Rank #6

The Ming dynasty and it's intellectual achievements. The Ming were not highly known for their intellectual achievements which is why that category of P.E.R.S.I.A is ranked #6 the lowest rank out of them all. Although there was nothing bad about the Ming and their intellectual lives, it just didn't stand out as much as the other categories. And they didn't really do anything that at the time wasn't already done. However the Ming were able to read more for example "Literacy increased and books became cheaper because of the printing press and a stable govt" (http://apworldhistory101.com/history-of-china/ming/) aswell as the good ideas the Ming did also have some bad ones. Like what happened to Wan Hoo who lived in the middle of the Ming Dynasty. For example, "A man named Wan Hoo even tried to fly to the sky by sitting in a chair propelled by gunpowder sticks. Unfortunately, he failed." Overall the Ming had some god ideas but also bad ideas. That is why they are ranked at #6.

Wan hoo the man who tried to fly

Ming Dynasty and it's political achievements Rank #5

Nothing really stands out about the Ming dynasties political achievements, because there weren't many that impacted China or even the modern world. The only thing that the Ming people did differently in their political structure that differed from previous Chinese Political structures was that the Ming Dynasty had only one Department the Secretariat. These were people entrusted with many tasks and given roles of power based on their position, grand or imperial Secretariat and had important parts in the governing system. For example "Unlike previous dynasties, the Ming Dynasty had only one Department–the Secretariat. The Secretariat controlled the Six Ministries. They were headed by a Minister and the day to day affairs were looked after by a Director all under the direct control of the Emperor."(http://totallyhistory.com/ming-dynasty-government/) This shows how different the Ming dynasty was compared to other dynasties. And also "The civil administration of China remained essentially unchanged for 2000 years. The Ming Dynasty government appointed Grand Secretaries to assist the Emperor with paperwork." (http://totallyhistory.com/ming-dynasty-government/) and this information heavily connects to the picture below of a secretariat giving certain paper work to the emperor.

secretariat giving paper to emperor

Ming Dynasty and it's social structure achievements Rank #4

The Ming dynasties social structure was developed for hundreds of years by the words of Confucius. Before the Ming Dynasty was in rule, China was divided into four classes which were, merchants, farmers, artisans, and gentry. In the Ming Dynasty there were four occupations and they were classified as Shi, Nong, Gong, and Shang. The Shi were classified as the "Elite people" The people of the shi class were highly respected in the society because they represented wisdom and education. The Nong were the peasant farmers. They played a very vital and important role in the empire, because they were the producers of food provided for the empire. The Nong were a very important social class in the Ming dynasty. The Gong were artisans and craftsmen. They were somewhat similar to the famers, however, they had more skills to make goods of daily use for the society. Artisans and craftsmen were usually government employed and they more respected than the merchants. And their skills were a significant role in the Ming dynasty. And their skills were passed on from generation to generation. The Shang were merchants and traders and they really only transported foods and goods that were produced by the Gong and the Nong. Most of the people in the Ming population believed that merchants didn't really contribute much to the society. Overall this is ranked at number four because although it is important it odes not show anything that would rank it higher than four but it was still it was a very important achievement for the Ming dynasty.

Brief chart showing the classes in the Ming dynasty

Ming Dynasty and it's economic achievements Rank #3

The reason for Ming dynasty and its economic achievements being ranked in the top three is because it had a massive influence on merchants and technological advancements. For example, "The economy of the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) of China was the largest in the world during that period. It is regarded as one of China's three golden ages (the other two being the Han and Song periods). The period was marked by the increasing political influence of the merchants, the gradual weakening of imperial rule, and technological advances."(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_the_Ming_dynasty) This evidence clearly shows the positive impact that the Ming economy had. Proving why economic achievements is highly ranked at number three. However there were also some down sets in the Ming economy one of which being the beginning of their currency. For example "The early Ming dynasty attempted to use paper currency, with outflows of bullion limited by its ban on private foreign commerce.[1] Like its forebears, the currency experienced massive counterfeiting and hyperinflation." (wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_the_Ming_dynasty) This information is why it is not ranked higher than number three due to the fail in starting currency. And the Ming naval fleet that took down the Yuan (Mongols) was also a massive cause and helped their trading and economy, however their economic growth ended after the fleet was burned down after Zhong He's mysterious death and his fleet died with him.

Ming dynasty and its famous Naval fleet

Ming Dynasty and it's religious achievements Rank #2

The reason for ranking religious advancements at number two is because the Ming dynasty influenced multiple religions and advanced their religious beliefs in Taoism (also Daoism) and Buddhism. As well as Christianity. And these beliefs helped shape the way that the Chinese people though especially Buddhism. And thanks to religion the Ming Dynasty advance economically and in other ways religion helped unite the Chinese people and made them connected within the Ming and Chinese community and even effects modern Chinese communities. For example, "During the reign of Ming Dynasty, social stability was quite prevalent. It was an era of economic prospering for China. Some people may not recognize it, but the various religions during that time had contributed much to what the Chinese community is today. Even though Ming Dynasty collapsed as early as 1600, it is no doubt that Taoism and Chinese Buddhism are still practiced nowadays."(http://totallyhistory.com/ming-dynasty-religion/) This shows why Ming religion was so important and why it helped the Ming dynasty in a very positive way. And the Ming unlike other Chinese dynasties were influenced by Christianity, And it allowed them to advance in Western Technology. The text states, "Christianity was also spreading in China during the Ming Dynasty. Christianity arrived along with the Jesuit missionaries. The Italian Jesuit Matteo Ricci was one of them. He was able to convince Chinese members of the upper class to join with him through the advanced Western technology he introduced to them."(http://totallyhistory.com/ming-dynasty-religion/) This information shows why religion was ranked at the scond place spot because it help the Ming dynasty advance their beliefs out of China and it made them more dominant in technology.

Image of a Buddhist statue that was highly influential in the Ming dynasty and all of China

Ming Dynasty and it's Artistic achievements Rank #1

The Ming Dynasty and their Artistic achievements rightfully deserves the number one rank because art was a very big subject in China and the Ming dynasty restored culture and art and even advanced on in art and just overall made it better. And the Ming were also influenced by other nations and their art. As the text states, "Ming decorative art built upon the richly varied legacy of the Mongol Yuan dynasty, which embraced both traditional Chinese art and foreign styles" (http://www.visual-arts-cork.com/) This information shows why Art is ranked at number one and this is because it allowed the Ming dynasty to further their artistic knowledge by inheriting foreign arts which was a main reason for their growth. And Ming art was also spread across the world. And the art that was the most popular was the pottery. For example, "The Ming Dynasty has become world famous for the unique quality of its ceramic art: in particular, its cobalt blue and white porcelain, its sea-green celadon glazed stoneware, and its white porcelain...all of which were exported around the world, mostly to Europe, the Middle East, Japan and South East Asia."(http://www.visual-arts-cork.com/) Overall this information shows how much of an impact art had on the Ming dynasty and as well as that, Ming dynasty art had a large impact on the outside world at the same time. Which is why Art is ranked number one for the Ming dynasty because of it;s massive influence on Chinese art and even art around the world.

This was a very popular artwork that was made in the Ming dynasty and was shared across the world

Credits:

Created with images by Arian Zwegers - "Beijing, Tiantan, Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest"

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