Decline in China
  • Hun tribes caused collapse of Han China
  • By 100 BCE, Han China was in a decline- Confucian intellectual became less creative, control of government went down, bureaucrats became corrupt, local landlords took over small regions
  • Daoist leaders formed the Yellow Turbans in 184 BCE and thought everything would turn around by magic- they attacked weaknesses of the emperor- protests failed
  • economy went down and social unrest grew
  • the decline caused China to not be able to fight back invading groups
  • Epidemics spread throughout China and politics only worsened
  • these factors caused about 300 years of chaos- during this time many regional rulers rose and fell, as well as dynasties
  • the spread of Buddhism threatened China's cultural unity
  • China revived around 500 CE- native rulers got rid of invaders
  • Sui Dynasty ruled until 618 CE and then the Tang Dynasty soon took power- tang dynasty brought good to China- gained support in Confucianism and bureaucracy again
  • bureaucracy decreased over time, but didn't disappear
  • Invading tribes adopted Chinese traditions and the Chinese were set back, but didn't have to remake their civilization

Decline in India
  • Control of Gupta emperors declined by 400 CE
  • Hun tribes were invading parts of northern India around 500 CE- but destroyed Gupta Empire within the next century
  • invaders formed a new ruling group of regional princes called Rajput- ruled small states and focused on military power
  • Buddhism declined in India- Hinduism started regaining support as Hun princes were converted from Buddhism to Hinduism
  • Islam began its spread after 600 CE- was Middle Eastern religion- believed in Allah (god)- reached India around 600 CE
  • Hindus reacted by emphasizing more on religious devotion- texts were written in the classical language causing Sanskrit to decline- this prevented Indians from leaving Hinduism
  • Islam affected India's international economic position
  • Regionalism was still the form of government

Fall of Rome
  • Began decline in 180 CE
  • political confusion made many weak leaders and conflicts of the succession of the throne
  • plagues traveled to Rome by international trade from southern Asia and destroyed the population
  • because the population fell, the economy did the same
  • recruiting for the army became difficult so people from Germanic tribes were hired to guard the borders of the empire
  • intellectuals became less creative as their ideals began to slip away
  • many internal problems caused the collapse of Rome because of the political decline- corruption grew in the government and the culture began to decline
  • imperial rule declined, economic stability worsened, farmers wanted to be protected by landlords
  • landlords had large estates, it provided some stability, but it weakened the power of the emperor over time and moved the economy away from successful trade
  • Diocletian ruled from 284 to 305 CE and tried to fix the empire- successful in getting economy back on track- pushed the worship of the emperor as god
  • Constantine ruled from 312 to 337 CE- set up a 2nd capital city, Constantinople, to help regulate eastern half of empire easier- tried to use Christianity to unify the empire- nothing revived the empire
  • because the empire was split in half, the western half became even weaker- tax revenues declined, which hurt the armies
  • Germanic tribes started invading in the 400s and took over completely around 476 CE
  • the fall split the unity of Mediterranean lands into 3 zones which eventually became 3 new empires
  • Byzantine Empire formed from imperial Rome
  • North Africa and Southern Mediterranean shores formed into an empire
  • Germanic kingdoms formed around Italy, France, and Spain

Spread of Christianity
Christianity proved itself to be one of the most powerful religions in the world by uniting social classes, giving women some feeling of equality, all under the guidance of the Pope.
  • Christianity began in the Middle East and spread West
  • became on of the 2 largest faiths in the world
  • it started two centuries before Jesus Christ was born from the opposition in the Jewish priesthood; caused much reform in the coming of the Messiah
  • Christianity played a role in developing East and West Europe after the Classical Era
  • it had structure similar to the Roman Empire; the church was very important
  • Christianity was said to be the only "true" religion, but it was tolerant of other religions
  • the Pope basically led the whole religion, like a leader of an empire, but for religion; pope- "father"- gave the religion strength and independence
  • the collapse of the Roman Empire gave Christianity much power
  • Soon, Christians didn't see themselves as Reform Jews anymore- saw themselves as a new religion
  • Christianity united all social classes because it appealed to all people; gave women more credit, but men and womed still weren't equal
  • Christian's believed in the second coming of Jesus- the father, son, and Holy Ghost

Spread of Buddhism
Buddhism was largely spread after the Classical Era, but didn't take over whole civilizations.

  • in India, it was a small religion, but soon moved outside of its borders
  • Buddhist monks were responsible for spreading Buddhism by taking leadership roles
  • Buddhists sought to reach nirvana- the point where one knows everything as has reached happiness
  • "The doctrine of bodhisattvas broadened the prospects of salvation for the average people by leading them in prayers and advising them on spiritual matters." - Matthew Weldai
  • Buddhism spread to China directly after the fall of Han China
  • because it spread to China, it spread to Korea and Japan from there
  • Mahayana- East Asian form of Buddhism had basic Buddhist beliefs but saw Buddha as a divine savior
  • began to organize priests, temples, creeds, and rituals
  • "Buddhism was not popular with Confucian leaders, Daoism, and imperial dynasties; suppressed". - Matthew Weldai
  • in Korea, Japan and Vietnam, Buddhism had more of an impact, compared to China
  • it didn't change much about the patriarchal beliefs though Buddhism stated that women were people too