Chinese Fashion Through the Dynasties

Chinese Fashion Through the Dynasties


This video describes the various fashion practices of ancient China across the dynasties.

Chinese Dynasties in Order

For centuries, China was ruled by a series of successive dynasties. The history of China as a country is commonly divided is commonly divided into periods ruled by dynasties. There were three main types of dynasties: central plain dynasties, unified dynasties, and conquest dynasties.

The central plain dynasties had their capital cities located within the Central Plain while the unified dynasties were responsible for uniting “China proper.” Conquest dynasties are Chinese dynasties that were founded by the non-Han Chinese. The first dynasty was Xia (2100 BC-1766 BC) but it is considered semi-legendary.

The Silk Road, Paper and Guns

• 125 B.C.: The Silk Road - Following capture and escape during a mission for Emperor Wu, Zhang Qian returned after 13 years with a map of the ground he had covered. Reaching as far as Afghanistan, his maps were accurate and led to the international trade route the Silk Road.

• 105 A.D.: Paper and books - Cai Lun developed paper by pounding together ingredients like bamboo, hemp, bark and others and spreading the pulp flat.

Paper use spread quickly across the empire, with the first Chinese dictionary, compiled by Xu Shen, and the first book of Chinese history, written by Sima Qian soon appearing.

• 850 A.D.: Gunpowder - Alchemists working with saltpeter for medicinal purposes mixed it with charcoal and sulfur. The explosive properties that resulted were used in warfare to propel arrows by the Tang Dynasty, as well as fireworks.

• 868 A.D.: Printing press - The earliest known printed book, The Diamond Sutra, was created during the Tang Dynasty. It was soon followed by calendars and educational material.

• 1260 A.D.: Kublai Khan - The grandson of Genghis conquered the Song Dynasty and established the Yuan Dynasty, unifying China and bringing Mongolia, Siberia and parts of the Middle East and even Europe into the Chinese Empire.

Kublai Khan introduced paper money, met with Marco Polo, brought the first Muslims to the country and attempted to conquer Japan.

• 1557: World trade - The Ming Dynasty expanded China’s maritime trade to export silk and porcelain wares. A European presence was allowed within the empire and Chinese merchants emigrated to locations outside the realm for the first time.

• 1683: Taiwan - This Dutch-controlled island was seized by Ming Dynasty General Koxinga in 1662, and annexed by the Qing Dynasty 21 years later.


Although the fashion trend changes over time, there are several types that are popular till today both at home and abroad.
Traditional Han Chinese Clothing (Han Fu): It refers to the attire worn by the Han people from the enthronement of the Yellow Emperor (about 2698 BC) till the late Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644 AD). It became known as the Han Fu (&ldquofu&rdquo means &ldquoclothes&rdquo in Chinese) because the fashion was improved and popularized during the Han Dynasty. It is usually in the form of long gown, cross collar, wrapping the right lapel over the left, loose wide sleeves and no buttons but a sash. Although simple in design, it gives different feelings to different wearers.
Chinese Suit (Tang Zhuang): It is a combination of the Manchu male jacket of the Qing Dynasty and the western style suit. It is usually straight collared, with coiled buttons down the front. Its color and design are in traditional Chinese style but tailoring is western.
Cheongsam (Qi Pao): Originated from the Manchu female clothes, it evolved by merging with western patterns that show off the beauty of a female body. Its features are straight collar, strain on the waist, coiled buttons and slits on both sides of the dress. Materials used are usually silk, cotton and linen. Cheongsam is the most popular Chinese attire in the world today.
Chinese Tunic Suit (Zhongshan Zhuang): Also called the Yat-sen Suit, it is designed by Dr. Sun Yat-sen by combining the western-style suit and Chinese attire. It has a turn-down collar and four pockets with flaps. As Chairman Mao Zedong worn it quite frequently, it is also called the Mao Suit by westerners. It is the main attire from the founding of the People&rsquos Republic of China in 1949 till 1980&rsquos. The country&rsquos leaders still wear it today when attending important occasions, such as military parades.

Traditional female hairstyles

Chinese women have sported different hairstyles during different periods of time. During the Han Dynasty (206 BCE to 220 CE), women used to tie their hair in loose buns with some untied hair hanging down their backs. This was a discriminatory period for women, since they were not allowed to be educated and were often seen as being inferior to men.

/> During the Han Dynasty (206 BCE to 220 CE), women used to tie their hair in loose buns with some untied hair hanging down their backs. (Image: wikimedia / CC0 1.0)

The Tang Dynasty (618 CE to 907 CE) is often celebrated as one of the glorious periods in Chinese history. It was a time of great cultural reform and advancement. Prosperity in the period not only allowed women to be freer, but also resulted in a large variety of hairstyles getting adopted. A typical Tang woman would arrange her hair in loops or tie it up above her head.

During the Ming Dynasty (1368 CE to 1644 CE), there was a population boom in China. Women during this period used to tie hair in buns and adorn it using ornaments. This was the last dynasty of China that was ruled by ethnic Hans.

/> During the Ming Dynasty (1368 CE to 1644 CE), there was a population boom in China. Women during this period used to tie their hair in buns and adorn it using ornaments. (Image: / CC0 1.0)

Qing (1644 CE to 1911 CE) was the final dynasty in the country’s history before the communists took over. It was ruled by non-Chinese Manchu tribes. Females started using bigger back decorations on their hair during this time. While the maids wore simple pins, queens wore pins that were adorned more exquisitely.

As far as brides were concerned, the Chinese preferred low buns, high buns, or a braided updo . The low bun was the most popular style among brides, while the braided updo style was more complex. Hair accessories were usually kept basic. Chopsticks were used to keep the hairstyle firm. Pins made from jade, gold, and pearl were also used.

Qing Dynasty Fashion

I don’t know if this post is entirely relevant but I thought I should probably write about it anyway even though I know that most people would want to read about more interesting aspects of Chinese history. Anyway, here we go.

The new Qing rulers established a dress code for the imperial court to distinguish the ruling elite and government from the general population. Court robes worn by the imperial family displayed round dragon medallions. The dragon symbolised the emperor, known as the Son of Heaven, and permission to wear this style of robe could only be given by him. Civil and
military officials displayed square court insignia badges on their robes with the appropriate bird or animal to identify their rank. The robes were made out of expensive fabrics such as silks, satins, fine wool and furs. They would often be further adorned with jewels. Women dressed according to the rank of their husbands. There were also laws governing what commoners wore. Servants, actors and labourers were only allowed to wear clothes made of cheap materials such as hemp cloth and sheepskin. When the Shunzhi Emperor fi rst conquered China in 1644 and established Qing rule in China, he decreed that all Chinese men should wear their hair in the Manchu style to show their obedience to their new rulers. They shaved the front of their head and wore a long queue (plaited ponytail) at the back. Anyone who refused to change his hairstyle could
be hunted down and killed. In the city of Jiangyin alone, the Qing army killed 100 000 men who continued to wear their hair as they had before. As a consequence, by 1750, all Chinese men except priests and monks wore their hair in the Manchu style like the Qing. Growing one’s hair long at the front or cutting off one’s queue were seen as symbols of rebellion against the Qing. This hairstyle lasted until the fall of the Qing Dynasty in 1912, when many men were safely able to cut off their queues.

I was not surprised that China’s found fashion so important in its society. If you were to do some study you would probably find very beautiful silk dresses for the women and dark silks for the men. Although there are probably much better things to talk about on this blog, I still found this quite interesting as I also hope you did too.

A Brief History of Han Dynasty Clothing

The Han dynasty was the second imperial dynasty of China, preceded by the Qin dynasty (221–206 BC) and succeeded by the Three Kingdoms period (220–280 AD). To this day, China’s majority ethnic group refers to itself as the “Han People”, and the Chinese characters are called “Han Characters”.

The term Hanfu apparel was originally recorded by the Book of Han, which refers to the Han dynasty’s traditional dresses. Hanfu (literally: “Han clothing”), also known as Hanzhuang or Huafu. Afterward, people use this Chinese mandarin word – Han Fu, to define all of the historical costumes of the Han Chinese people.

In the Han Dynasty, the silk industry got great development, and with the influence of the large-scale expansion of ancient China’s foreign trade, silk trade and export reached unprecedented prosperity.

With the promotion of trade, the economic and cultural exchanges between ancient China and its East and West neighbors have further developed, thus forming the famous “Silk Road.” These activities had an important impact on Han fashion clothing.

Main keywords of the article below: use, chinese, dynasty, diverse, state, eastern, development, period, equipment, history, zhou, plus, important, varieties, clothing, production, handicraft, promote, encourage, vassal, silk, innovation, sericulture, iron.

To the Eastern Zhou Dynasty, the vassal state is to encourage the development of sericulture and silk production, plus promote the use of the iron to promote the handicraft equipment innovation, more diverse varieties of silk, an important period of development of the history of Chinese silk. [1] The Zhou Dynasty women's clothing for the T-shirt irregular cloud munsu, side to deepen the color wide-flange around his waist, fabric belt, hair backward tilt. [1] Zhou Dynasty women's clothing due to the different strata vary. [1]

Some clothing of this era were really the result of laws imposed by Manchurian rulers of this Dynasty, such as the qípáo. (Under the broad Queue laws mandating that all male Chinese wear pony tails and shaved below the temples at least every ten days. (Disobedience was punishable by death.) [2]

White Zhou Dynasty court dress emperor, princes on Xuanyi, doctors and judges with the princes. [1] The Zhou Dynasty costumes broadly followed the Shang Dynasty service system and a slight change. [1] The Zhou dynasty towel in the form of the cap than the Shang Dynasty, headband, square-shaped, pointed, crescent-shaped towel cap shape. [1] The textile quality improvement and the increase in the variety of material foundation for the formation of the Zhou Dynasty Costume System. [1]

Chinese dress etiquette gradually developed during the Zhou Dynasty. [3] Traditional Han Chinese Clothing (Han Fu): It refers to the attire worn by the Han people from the enthronement of the Yellow Emperor (about 2698 BC) till the late Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644 AD). [4] In recent years, renewed interest in traditional Chinese culture has led to a movement in China advocating for the revival of ancient Han Chinese clothing. [5]

Though the color-to-element relationship has remained constant throughout Chinese history, the importance given to a color changed from one dynasty to the next, particularly in relation to clothing. [6] The clothing of the Tang Dynasty is considered the most opulent and artistic in ancient Chinese history. [6]

After the formal ceremonial dress first appeared in the Zhou Dynasty (1045� BC), the wedding dress concept got off the ground in the Qin and Han dynasties (221 BC – 220 AD) and reached its peak in the Song Dynasty (960�). [3] Xia Dynasty (2070 BC-1600BC) and Zhou Dynasty (1046 BC-249 BC) preferred black as pictures depict as follow, and the first emperor of Qin, used black color as the official color of his court. [7] Black is the most dignified color in the Xia Dynasty (21st - 17th century BC), white in the Shang Dynasty and red in the Zhou Dynasty. [4]

Later, the long gown appeared during the Zhou Dynasty (1046 - 256 BC) and it co-existed with the blouse-skirt combinations for thousands of years, improving further as time passed. [4] Eastern Zhou Dynasty Eastern Zhou Dynasty figurine of a charioteer Warring States Period Figurines of two female. [8] Already by the Dong (Eastern) Zhou dynasty (770-256 bce ) the art of weaving complex patterned silks was well advanced. [9] The Zhou Dynasty (1046 to 256 B.C.) placed high regard on the color red -- representing fire -- as its emperors believed fire to be stronger than gold. [6] The emperor of the Qin Dynasty (221 to 206 B.C.) wanted to show his dynasty's superiority to the Zhou Dynasty that had preceded him. [6] Qin emphasized the use of black, or water, to "extinguish" the fire of the Zhou Dynasty. [6] Hanfu of Zhou Dynasty Hanfu became looser, with the introduction of wide sleeves and jade decorations hung from the sash which served to keep the yi closed. [8]

Many of the country's ethnic minorities also wear their traditional costumes in their daily lives and they played an important role in the traditional Chinese clothing. [4] Its design developed through the dynasties and eras according to traditional Chinese clothing reforms. [3] Chinese clothing has varied by region and time, and is recorded by the artifacts and arts of Chinese culture. [5]

Works Cited " Chinese Clothing 3 --Royal Ceremonial Wear - China Political & Defence Forum - Global Times Forum - Discuss China, Discuss the World." [10] Chinese clothing seasoned a rapid development throughout the Wei, Jin, and Southern and Northern dynasties, Prior to 265, the cultures and esthetic views of the peoples in north and south China merged because of the moves initiated by frequent wars. [11]

Peoples Republic of China The Zhou Dynasty lasted from 1046-256 B.C. and during this dynasty chinese people would wear dark tops and yellow bottoms, but official garb included four-inch-wide sashes made from silk or leather that were worn over the lapels. [10] In 221 BC, the First Emperor of Qin unified China, and the Zhou Dynasty came to its end. [12] It was King Wu's brother, known as the Duke of Zhou, who performed the necessary steps for laying the basis upon which the Zhou Dynasty would consolidate its power throughout North China. [13]

The most influential minds in the Chinese intellectual tradition flourished under the Zhou, particularly towards the last period of the Zhou Dynasty, considered a time of intellectual and artistic awakening. [13] The years of the Eastern Zhou Dynasty were a golden age for Chinese philosophy. [14] Following nomadic attacks in the west, the Chinese Zhou dynasty moves its capital east to Luoyang. [13]

During the Zhou Dynasty, new technology and advances in communication and transportation changed China. [14] Shang Dynasty Zhou Dynasty The clothing of the Qin Dynasty from 221-206 BC was influence by the concept of Yin and Yang and the Five Elements. [10] Jifa established Zhou Dynasty, the longest dynasty in Chinese history. [12]

The Tang Dynasty wrote essentially the most brilliant page within the background of Chinese clothing. [11] Qing Dynasty During the Republic Period of China (1911-1949) the new government passed a law that abolished the clothing customs and rules which allowed everyone, regardless of social status, to dress the way they wanted. [10] By: Sylvia, Maria, and Jacob Traditional Clothing of China The Neolithic Age The Xia dynasty lasted from ca. 2100-1600 BCE and during this dynasty the dress system of China was created. [10]

It followed the Shang Dynasty (c. 1600-1046 BCE) and it finished when the army of the state of Qin captured the city of Chengzhou in 256 BCE. The long history of the Zhou Dynasty is normally divided in two different periods: Western Zhou (1046-771 BCE) and Eastern Zhou (770-256 BCE), so-called following the move of the Zhou capital eastwards where it was safer from invasion. [13] Zhou rule lasted for nearly a thousand years under both the Xi, or Western Zhou Dynasty, with its peace and prosperity, until 770 BC, and the Dong, or Eastern Zhou Dynasty, during which several states vied for power with the weak Zhou kings. [14] The Western Zhou was the period from the 11th century BC to 771 BC when King You was killed by Quanrong, a barbarian tribe living to the west of the Zhou Dynasty. [12] The Shang Dynasty was overthrown by King Wen of the Zhou Dynasty about 1100 BC. The Zhou rulers claimed the Mandate of Heaven, by which, the gods gave them the right to rule supreme so long as they ruled with justice and cared for the people. [14] The Zhou Dynasty came to an end during the Warring States period in 256 BCE, when the army of the state of Qin captured the city of Chengzhou and the last Zhou ruler, King Nan, was killed. [13] The Zhou dynasty lasted longer than any other, from 1027 to 221 B.C. It was philosophers of this period who first enunciated the doctrine of the "mandate of heaven" (tianming or ), the notion that the ruler (the "son of heaven" or ) governed by divine right but that his dethronement would prove that he had lost the mandate. [15] Then came rebellion in 770 BC. The Zhou rulers managed to hold onto their throne, but in the new Dong or Eastern Zhou Dynasty, their power was limited and a set of seven states constantly vied for dominance. [14] Then under the Eastern Zhou dynasty, beginning about 722 BC, people began to use these bronze jars and cups in their own houses, to show how rich and powerful they were, instead of only for the gods and their ancestors. [16] The first part of the Zhou Dynasty is called the Western Zhou, and it runs from about 1122 to about 722 BC. [16] During the first era of Zhou reign, called the Xi, or Western Zhou Dynasty, the dynasty's kings held almost complete power in a time of prosperity and peace. [14] The western Zhou Dynasty also followed similar styles and designs as that of the Shang dynasty. [17] During the Western Zhou dynasty, art didn’t change very much from the Shang Dynasty that came before it. [16]

Zhou Dynasty - Ancient History Encyclopedia Zhou Dynasty Cristian Violatti The Zhou Dynasty (1046-256 BCE) was the longest-lasting of ancient China's dynasties. [13] The Zhou Dynasty experienced over 800 years' history, having 37 emperors. [12] The Emperor Qin believed that the Qin dynasty would subdue the Zhou dynasty like water extinguishes fire. [11] One day, his family will be overthrown by the Zhou Dynasty, which will reign from about 1100 BC to 221 BC. For Cheng Tang, that is far in the future. [14] One of them, the Qin, would rise to the top and overthrow the Zhou Dynasty in 221 BC. [14] In 770 BC, King Ping of the Zhou Dynasty moved the capital from Fengyi to Luoyi (Luoyang City, Henan Province today). [12] The Zhou dynasty had its capital at Hao ( ), near the city of Xi'an ( ), or Chang'an ( ), as it was known in its heyday in the imperial period. [15] This was the major turning point in the Zhou Dynasty, which marks the end of the Western Zhou period. [13] The Zhou Dynasty lasted, in various forms, for nearly a thousand years. [14]

The Han Chinese clothing, or the Hanfu, covered all the traditional clothing worn by people in that era. [17] The ancient Chinese clothing style also saw a dominance of the tunic suit, also known as the Zhongshan Zhuang or the Zhongshan suit. [17] There are various dynasties that influenced the styles of Chinese clothing. [17] Standard Chinese clothing is broadly known as hanfu with many variations such as conventional Chinese academic dress. [11] Ancient Chinese clothing saw a lot of robes that are popular even today. [17] The ancient Chinese clothing showcases a rich cultural tradition that has influenced its design. [17] As a result of reasonably plain design and structure of conventional Chinese clothing, embroidered edgings, decorated bands, draped cloth or silks, patterns on the shoulders, and sashes had been often added as ornamentation. [11]

In the Zhou Dynasty about 3,000 years ago, the Chinese discovered that using the ashes of certain plants could be used to remove grease. [18] The deforestation may have been a factor in the social degeneration that allowed a more warlike Shang culture to replace the Longshan, whose late use of arrowheads, spears, daggers, and clubs foreshadowed the conflicts that were to worsen with the Shang warriors, who dominated China for three-quarters of a millennium until their overthrow by the Zhou dynasty in the eleventh century BC. [19] Chinese historians living in later periods were accustomed to the notion of one dynasty succeeding another, but the actual political situation in early China is known to have been much more complicated. [20] This method is recorded in "The Rites of Zhou," a sacred document detailing the religious ceremonies of this early Chinese dynasty. [18] Traditional Chinese history gives the dates 2205-1766 BC for the Xia (Hsia) dynasty, but the writing about it comes from the Zhou (Chou) dynasty in the first millennium BC. The word xia meant summer and was depicted as flourishing trees. [19] The Shang Dynasty featured 31 kings, from Tang of Shang to King Zhou of Shang it was the longest dynasty in Chinese history. [20]

The traditional dates of the Shang dynasty are 1766-1122 BC, but recent scholarship suggests this culture lasted nearly five hundred years and was overthrown by the Zhou dynasty about the middle of the eleventh century BC. The Shang were centered around the Yellow River and moved their capital many times, though it was near modern Anyang for more than 250 years after it was moved there by the powerful ruler Pan Geng in 1384 BC. [19] The next year the Zhou people fled to the east, and the nine sacred vessels passed into the hands of Qin in 149 BC, marking the final disappearance of the Zhou dynasty that had been only a figurehead for several centuries. [19]

The Zhou capital was sacked by barbarians from the west, the Zhou king killed, and the Zhou moved East, to Luoyang in present day Henan Province - because of this shift, historians divide the Zhou dynasty into the earlier "Western" (1100-771 BCE) and the later "Eastern" (771-256 BCE) periods. [21] Clothes in Shang and Zhou Dynasty  Shang and Zhou dynasty was a period featured the prosperity of Slavery Society. [22] By the end of the 2nd millennium BC, the Zhou Dynasty began to emerge in the Yellow River valley, overrunning the Shang. [20] The Zhou dynasty lasted longer than any other, from 1027 to 221 B.C. It was philosophers of this period who first enunciated the doctrine of the "mandate of heaven" (tianming ), the notion that the ruler (the "son of heaven") governed by divine right but that his dethronement would prove that he had lost the mandate. [21] "The Record of Trades," a document from the Warring States Period toward the end of the Zhou Dynasty (c. 700-221 B.C.), records how the Zhou cleaning methods were improved upon. [18] Respect for the old: "The government of the Zhou Dynasty may be described as follows: a father was supreme in a family, a king in a state, and old age in a village. [21] The Hymns, the oldest dating from 10 th century BCE, were used in dynastic rituals to address the deified spirits of the founders of the Zhou Dynasty, Kings Wen and Wu. [21] The Zhou Dynasty used a father to son succession system, established elaborate state rituals, and began developing a professional bureaucracy of educated men for service as administrators, scribes, clerks, and advisors. [21] During Zhou Dynasty, the "class"feature of clothes was more notable. [22] The first two centuries of the Zhou dynasty were fairly peaceful within their realms, though wars were often fought with nomads on the perimeters to expand the kingdom. [19]

Opulent Clothing Unearthed in Ming Dynasty Tomb Live Science - December 8, 2014 Archaeologists in China have unearthed a husband-and-wife tomb dating to the Ming Dynasty that contains extraordinarily well-preserved clothing decorated with elaborate designs. [20] Generally speaking, the history of Chinese Clothing can be divided into nine periods. [22] Qipao (bannermen dress and Tangzhuang), usually regarded as traditional Chinese clothing nowadays, are actually Manchu-style clothing. [20] The traditional Chinese clothing, or Hanfu was also replaced by Manchu-style clothing. [20]

By refining the basic elements and features of traditional Chinese clothing, as well as taking ancient aesthetic view into account, Hanfu (汉服 han fu), also known as Han costume or Chinese silk robe, was invented in the Shang Dynasty, which was over 3000 years ago. [23] From the late Zhou Dynasty (1046-256 BCE) onwards, traditional Chinese society was organized into a hierarchic system of socio-economic classes known as the four occupations. [24] Chinese tripod bronze lidded vessel, Zhou Dynasty (1027-256 BC). [25] The earliest music of the Zhou Dynasty recorded in ancient Chinese texts includes the ritual music called yayue and each piece may be associated with a dance. [24] The Zhou dynasty is often regarded as the touchstone of Chinese cultural development. [24]

In ancient China, hanfu was used to indicate a person's social status, especially in the Western Zhou Dynasty, when a strict hierarchical society was established. [23] Starting in the Western Zhou dynasty, however, class distinction became apparent, as evident in the differences in clothing and personal adornment. [26]

With the fall of the last imperial dynasty in 1911, new styles of clothing were adopted, as people struggled to find ways of dressing that would be both "Chinese" and "modern." [27] Although Chinese has gradually become an open country since 1980 thanks to the Chinese economic reform, and Zhongshan zhuang has now been replaced by more modernized clothing, leaders of China still wear it today when attending important events. [23]

The design of traditional Chinese clothing also has its unique characteristics in different time periods. [23] When there's a discussion about traditional Chinese clothing going on, the traditional Chinese dress (Qipao) and Chinese tunic suit (Zhongshan zhuang) are also something often mentioned at the first place. [23] Therefore, it’s difficult to generalize the idea of traditional Chinese clothing based on different types of clothing which prevailed in different dynasties. [23] Chinese clothing changed considerably over the course of some 5,000 years of history, from the Bronze Age into the twentieth century, but also maintained elements of long-term continuity during that span of time. [27] There have been many historical changes in Chinese clothing, and the Chinese style choices vary depending on what region is being scrutinized. [28]

During the Zhou dynasty the western people used different styles of the Hanfu Shangyi to differentiate between classes. [28] Zhou Dynasty (c.1027-256 BC), The pastoral Zhou (Chou) people migrated from the Wei valley NW of the Yellow River c.1027 BC and overthrew the Shang Dynasty. [29] The ancestors to whom a Shang or Zhou dynasty king made sacrifices were his patrilineal ancestors, that is, his ancestors linked exclusively through men (his father’s father, his father’s father’s father, and so on). [30]

The sole emperor of the Xin Dynasty, Wang Mang (), was the nephew of Grand Empress Dowager Wang Zhengjun. [2] In 1125, Emperor Tianzha was captured by the Jin army, which brought the Liao Dynasty to an end. [2]

China unified and became prosperous during the Tang Dynasty, consequently culture and arts flourished. [2] The Southern and Northern Dynasties was a period in the history of China that lasted from 420 to 589 AD. Though an age of civil war and political chaos, it was also a time of flourishing arts and culture, advancement in technology, and the spreading of Mahayana Buddhism and Daoism. [2]

Due to the unification of China, and short duration of this dynasty, fashion styles of the Qin didn't change much through the Han dynasty (206-220AD). [2] Underpants for memorial ceremonies were decorated with black brims, and those for court dress in feudal China were decorated with red brims. [2]

Western Zhou was a period of strict social/class hierarchy and the clothing was the mark of one's status. [2] Though the design of many clothing styles remained the same as the Han and Sui Dynasties, they also started to incorporate designs from Western regions, principally the Tartars. [2]

For instance, Japanese kimono adopted the elites of the dresses of the Tang Dynasty in terms of colors, and the Hanbok (traditional Korean clothing) also adopted the advantages of the dresses of the Tang Dynasty. [2] "China's clothing systems solidified during the Han dynasty (206 BC - 220 AD). [2]

The costume code of the Western Han Dynasty (206BC-8AD) followed the one established in the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC). [2] In the Eastern Han Dynasty, people in black had to wear purple silk adornments to match their clothes. [2] Few people wore the Shenyi garments during the Eastern Han Dynasty. [2]

Men's casual garments in the Yuan Dynasty mainly followed those of the Han people, and a jacket with short sleeves was worn over the casual garment. [2]

Curving-front garment originated from the Shenyi (long coat) prevalent in the Warring States Period, and was still in use in the Han Dynasty. [2] The dresses of the Tang Dynasty boldly adopted the features of foreign garments in terms of forms and adornments i.e. they mainly referred to the garments of other countries (such as the Central-Asia countries, India, Iran, Persia, northern countries and the Western Regions) and used them to improve the habilatory culture of the Tang Dynasty." [2] Compared with the costume of the Tang Dynasty (618-907), the proportion of the upper outer garment to lower skirt in the Ming Dynasty was significantly inverted. [2] By and large, the rank system of officials of the Song Dynasty followed that of the Tang Dynasty, so official costumes in the palace during the two dynasties were similar, both falling into the following categories, Chaofu (court costumes), Jifu (ceremonial costumes), Gongfu (formal robes), Rongfu (military uniforms), Sangfu (funeral costumes) and Shifu (seasonal costumes). [2] The use of colors changed slightly during the Yuanfeng reign of the Song Dynasty, i.e. purple was used for officials above the fourth grade bright red, above the sixth grade and green, above the ninth grade. [2]

During and after, Chinese fashion came to incorporate a much wider range of fashions owing to incorporation of western fashion and recognition of a multitude of minority designs, fabrics, colors and trends as being "Chinese." [2] It's a one-piece Chinese dress for women whereas the male version is called Changshan. [2] As Chinese civilization grew and became more complex, so naturally did its' fashion. [2]

Clothing vestments, court dress, hunting clothing, fierce clothing, soldiers clothing and uniforms. [1] Young ladies in the mid Ming Dynasty usually preferred to dress in these waistcoats. [2] Another feature of costume in the Ming Dynasty was that the garment front was decorated with various striking adornments made of gold, jade and pearl, etc. A special adornment was a golden chain hung with nipper, toothpick, ear pick and small knife, articles that were often used by women in their daily life. [2] There were many new changes in costume of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). [2] Paddy-field costumes were dresses for ordinary women in the Ming Dynasty. [2]

There was also a sort of waistcoats with buttons down the front, which first appeared in the Yuan Dynasty and was originally special costume for the queen. [2] The Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368) was the amalgamation age of ethnic groups in China's history, and the dresses and personal adornments of the time also fully represented this feature. [2] The Liao Dynasty also known as the Khitan Empire was founded by the minority Yl () Clan at the same time as the Tang Dynasty collapsed. [2] "The garments in the Tang Dynasty also greatly affected the garments of neighboring countries. [2] Since the upper outer garment was shorter and the lower garment was longer, the jacket gradually became longer to shorten the length of the exposed skirt, and the collar changed from the symmetrical type of the Song Dynasty (960-1279) to the main circular type. [2] Song Dynasty fashion was simple and natural reflecting the cultural milieu of the time and in changes other arts. [2]

The Western Han Dynasty implemented the Shenyi (long coat) system, which featured a cicada-shaped hat, red clothes and twin diamond-shaped collar. [2] Shirt lower, slightly relaxed style than the Shang Dynasty. [1] "The dresses of the Tang Dynasty were mainly made of silk, so dresses were famous for softness and lightness. [2] It was not in the Ming Dynasty that buttons first came into being. [2] Women's garments of the Yuan Dynasty included aristocratic type and common-people type. [2] Ordinary women of the Yuan Dynasty wore Ruqun (upper jacket and lower skirt), and garments of Banbei (half sleeves) were also popular. [2]

The waistcoats in the Qing Dynasty were transformed from those of the Yuan Dynasty. [2]

Wendi emperor of Sui dynasty allows ordinary people wear similar color, but the later emperors in Tang dynasties were not that generous and made the light yellow exclusively within royal family and a symbol of distinguish of power status. [7] It was not until Sui dynasty, yellow seriously became a favored color by emperor and royal family and ordinary people as well. [7]

During the Mughal dynasty ( c. 1526-1748), emperor Akbar ’s Rajput wives became inspired by the profusion of luxurious fabrics available in India and designed a graceful new style of dress that Muslim women adopted forthwith. [9]

Korean records state that special costumes for court wear modeled after those of Tang China were adopted during the 7th century but Chinese influence on Korean dress at this period is verifiable only in changes that occurred in the everyday costumes of the nobility. [9] It is clear that emblematic colours and patterns as well as the pao style were borrowed from China because modern court dress in Japan, which has been little changed since the 12th century, has many purely Chinese characteristics. [9]

This ho robe is yellow (the colour worn only by emperors and their families in China), and it is patterned with hō-ō birds and kilin (Japanized versions of the mythical Chinese fenghuang and qilin ). [9] These features have been preserved for thousands of years till the time of the Republic of China (1912 - 1949AD), when Chinese Tunic Suit (Mao Suit) and cheongsam prevailed. [4]

Traditional Wedding Costumes: Chinese traditional wedding costumes vary in different dynasties and time periods. [4] Painted by Gao Chunming, selected from Lady Garments and Adornments of Chinese Past Dynasties by Zhou Xun and Gao Chunming. [8] During the Nara period (710-784) Japanese court circles adopted Chinese court dress, the most characteristic feature of which was the long kimono-style pao garment. [9] The adoption of Chinese-style mandarin squares as emblems of rank for civil and military officials (who wore them on their turumagi ) appears to have been the only notable example of Chinese influence on men’s dress at this period. [9] Chinese records indicate that at least as early as the Tang dynasty (618-907) certain designs, colours, and accessories were used to distinguish the ranks of imperial, noble, and official families the earliest visual evidence of these emblematic distinctions in dress is to be found in Ming portraits. [9] Chinese Suit (Tang Zhuang): It is a combination of the Manchu male jacket of the Qing Dynasty and the western style suit. [4] By the Shang Dynasty (17th century BC - 1046 BC), the basic features of traditional Chinese attire were created, as well as the general pattern of blouse plus skirt. [4] By the Shang dynasty ( c. 1600-1046 bce ) Chinese sericulture --the raising of silk worms and the production of silk --had become very sophisticated. [9] Panel from an imperial Chinese silk dragon robe embroidered in silk and gold thread, 17th century, early Qing dynasty in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City. [9] The largely Han Chinese population immediately cut off their queues they had been forced to grow in submission to the overthrown Qing Dynasty. [5] It became known as the Han Fu ("fu" means "clothes" in Chinese) because the fashion was improved and popularized during the Han Dynasty. [4]

As a vital part of Chinese civilization, traditional clothing plays an important role in the country's history and culture. [4] Among the upper dominated class, the Emperor, without any doubt, designated the color yellow and the dragon emblem on traditional Chinese imperial dress as an exclusive affirmation of their power. [7] Chinese famous actress has ever with a dress with yellow color and dragon emblem, which was really eye-catching. [7]

Its color and design are in traditional Chinese style but tailoring is western. [4] Over the centuries, notably in Korea and Japan, traditional styles of dress have reflected a marked Chinese influence, though both countries developed characteristic styles of their own. [9] Adapted from Japanese student wear, this style of dress became known as the Zhongshan suit (Zhongshan being one of Sun Yat-sen's given names in Chinese). [5] The informal Manchu changfu, a plain long robe, was worn by all classes from the emperor down, though Chinese women also continued to wear their Ming-style costumes, which consisted of a three-quarter-length jacket and pleated skirt. [9] Unlike the traditional Han Chinese costumes, these costumes are still widely worn today. [4] In addition to the basic features and patterns, traditional Chinese attires have many other features like appearance, cutting, decoration, color and design, etc, all of which changed over the various dynasties. [4] We can learn more about these time-honored practices through the traditional Chinese wedding dress. [3] Officers of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association in the United States in tangzhuang dress, with riding jackets (馬褂) over changshan. [5]

Empress dowagers, queens and high-ranked imperial concubines used cyan sheets with gold-wrapped metal trims to decorate their court costumes images of dragons and Chinese characters Fu (blessing) and Shou (longevity) were embroidered on the clothes. [7] Nowadays, however, most Chinese wear modern clothes in their daily lives, not much difference from their western counterparts. [4] Most Chinese men wore Chinese black cotton shoes, but wealthy higher class people would wear tough black leather shoes for formal occasions. [5]

In the early 1980s, traditional Chinese weddings started to adopt Western practices. [3] Traditional Chinese cotton was used to make the garments colour designated worker, soldier, or cadre. [9] It was made of traditional Chinese fabrics, padded in winter for warmth. [9] For the 2012 Hong Kong Sevens tournament, sportswear brand Kukri Sports teamed up with Hong Kong lifestyle retail store G.O.D. to produce merchandising, which included traditional Chinese jackets and Cheongsam-inspired ladies polo shirts. [5]

The ivory tablet ( shaku ) carried by the emperor when wearing the sokutai was undoubtedly inspired by tablets of jade that Chinese emperors carried as symbols of their imperial power. [9] The ancient Chinese believed that everything in nature evolved from the five basic elements of water, fire, wood, metal and earth. [6] The voluminous outer robe ( ho ) is cut in the style of the Chinese pao but is given a distinctively Japanese look by being tucked up at the waist so that the skirt ends midway between the knees and the floor. [9] It set out to rejuvenate Chinese fashion of the 1920s and 30s, in bright colors and with a modern twist. [5] Chinese civil or military officials used a variety of codes to show their rank and position. [5] This was because in the theory of the five elements(metal, wood, water, fire and earth), the song dynasty's auspicious element was fire, hence they chose red as their symbol and for Ming Dynasty, the family name of the royal family was Zhu, which means red in Chinese. [7]

When it comes to Jin dynasty, they prefers red instead for emperor wardrobe design. [7] They also vary based on one's political position, social status, occupation and gender, etc. For instance, dragon embroideries and bright yellow can only be used by emperors most of the time in the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907 AD), purple official costumes are for the fifth or higher rank officials in the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911 AD), the higher a person's social rank or the richer one was, the more embroideries and borders there were on his attires. [4] The rise of the Manchu Qing Dynasty in many ways represented a new clothing styles were required to be worn by all noblemen and officials. [5] Imitative clothing continued to the Qing Dynasty (1644�). [3] The Han Dynasty (206 B.C. to 220 A.D.) continued the Qin Dynasty's use of dark clothing, but incorporated red. [6]

Qing emperors' dress adhered to a rigid code that specified clothing for every occasion: ceremonial robes for the most formal ceremonial occasions, court wear for holding audiences, auspicious garments worn during the celebration of festive occasions such as Lunar New Year and his birthday, informal clothing to be worn in his private quarters, and travel ensembles to be worn during the hunt, expeditions and inspection tours. [7] Traditional Manchu Clothing: It is the traditional dress of the Manchu ethnic nationality, usually in the form of long gown and sometimes with a jacket or waistcoat outside. [4] During the early part of this period both men and women wore tight, waist-length jackets and short, tight trousers and it is believed that the Koreans’ traditional fondness for white clothing dates from this period. [9] Traditional Clothing of the Other Ethnic Minorities: In addition to Manchu, the country has 54 ethnic minorities and each of them has their own unique costumes. [4]

Purple signified court officials above the fifth rank, and purple borders on clothing were considered especially elegant. [6] For colder weather, clothing was padded with cotton or silk or lined with fur. [9] Requisite silks, gauzes, satins, brocades and damasks of the highest quality were woven in the imperial weaving factory in Suzhou, and the clothing was sumptuously embroidered and embellished with gold, pearls and precious stones. [7]

Clothing and jewelry of the Qin Dynasty was predominantly black. [6]

During the earlier years, or Western Han Dynasty, ordinary people wore red while court dress was black. [6] By the end of the Han dynasty (206 bce -220 ce ) virtually every technique of weaving now known had already been invented in China. [9] The declining Qing dynasty was swept aside in 1912, and China began to emulate the world outside its boundaries. [9] This pao robe changed form but continued to be worn in China until the end of the Ming dynasty in 1644. [9]

The basic kimono style adopted by Japanese women during the Nara period has remained amazingly close to that of the pao robes worn by the women of Tang China. [9] In the early period of the People's Republic of China, Mao Suit stayed popular among not only males, but also females. [4] Officials' Uniform: Unlike modern China, almost all kinds of officials in ancient times had uniforms. [4] In Japan, China, and India, traditional dress is often preferred for occasions such as weddings. [9] In mainland China the communist revolution of 1949 brought strict directives on dress. [9] The abolition of imperial China in 1912 had an immediate effect on dress and customs. [5]

With a long history of over 3,000 years, China has a variety of cultural traditions relating to marriage. [3] In the year 2000, dudou -inspired blouses appeared in the summer collections of Versace and Miu Miu, leading to its adoption within China as a revealing form of outerwear. [5] In contemporary China, yellow color and dragon emblem are used as a new fashion element. [7] In the 15th century, Korean women began to wear pleated skirts ( chima ) and longer chŏgori, a style that was undoubtedly introduced from China. [9] If you want to visit China to experience traditional Chinese culture, we can assist you. [3] Depending on one's status in society, each social class had a different sense of fashion in ancient China. [5] Then a great change occurred with the formation of the Republic of China, when Mao Suit became popular among the males and cheongsam among the females. [4]

Compared to later designs, the wedding dress during the Zhou era advocated solemnity. [3] When the Manchus overthrew the Ming and established the Qing dynasty (1644-1911/12), it was decreed that new styles of dress should replace the pao costume. [9] Apart from bright yellow, red, blue and light blue were also reserved colors for the emperor in Qing dynasty. [7] It was Wendi emperor in Han Dynasty who used yellow as a designated color for emperor in the first place. [7] After Tang dynasty, Song Dynasty and Ming Dynasty emperors took red as their Longpao color. [7] In Ming dynasty, Longpao were not all red, there were white and yellow which were all official colors on the court. [7] The fur of a black fox and the color yellow were reserved for high level officials and members of the imperial family in the Qing dynasty. [7] Since the Tang Dynasty, yellow has been symbolic of royalty because of its closeness to the color of gold. [6] During the Tang Dynasty, ordinary people could not wear yellow. [6]

The wedding dress of the Tang Dynasty played a bridging role. [3] In the late Tang Dynasty, a kind of formal dress – a high-waisted skirt with long sleeves – was used as the wedding dress. [3]

In the Song Dynasty, the complicated wedding dress was simplified into an unlined garment with loose sleeves. [3]

Since Manchu is the leading class of the Qing Dynasty and their dresses were strongly promoted, this kind of clothes was very popular in that period. [4] They are strictly distinguished by colors, embroidered patterns and hats, etc. For instance, in the Ming Dynasty, the embroidered pattern on a first rank civil officer's uniform was a crane, second rank a golden pheasant, third rank a peacock, fourth rank a wild goose, fifth rank a silver pheasant, sixth rank an egret, seventh rank a "purple mandarin duck", eighth rank an oriole and ninth rank a quail. [4] In the later Eastern Han Dynasty, red symbolized the dynasty's "fire virtue" and became predominant. [6] The wide belt became an important accessory during the Tang Dynasty. [6] Fan Bingbing in "The Empress of China’ wearing exquisite Hanfu Tang Dynasty costume. [8]

China clothes may be the emblem of Chinese tradition, at the same time as an essential element within the background and culture of every dynasty. [11] Understandably, people rebelled, and the Zhou family, led by King Wen, overthrew the last Shang king and formed a new dynasty about 1100 BC. They did so under what they called the Mandate of Heaven, by which, they claimed, the gods gave them the right to rule supreme so long as they ruled with justice and cared for the people. [14] The Zhou justified the change of dynasty and their own authority by claiming that the dispossessed Shang had forfeited the " Mandate of Heaven " by their misrule. [13] Here they began to develop Shang-style agriculture, and they also built a city in an area named Plain of Zhou, which gave its name to the state and the dynasty. [13] The real power of Zhou was so small, that the end of the dynasty was hardly noted. [13]

The last Shang ruler, a despot according to standard Chinese accounts, was overthrown by a chieftain of a frontier tribe called Zhou ( ), which had settled in the Wei ( ) Valley in modern Shaanxi ( ) Province. [15] Zhou rulers encouraged the building of new canals, roads, and communications systems to increase trade, and for the first time, the Chinese began to ride horseback. [14]

Sharing the language and culture of the Shang, the early Zhou rulers, through conquest and colonization, gradually sinicized, that is, extended Shang culture through much of China Proper north of the Chang Jiang ( or Yangtze River). [15] For three centuries after the Zhou conquered the Shang, Zhou rulers maintained order in North China and expanded their territories. [13]

The Eastern Zhou began, whose ruling area covered the Yellow River and Yangtze River watersheds as well as the majority of northeast and north China in ancient times. [12] During the Eastern Zhou, China was torn apart and wars continuously happened. [12] During the course of several centuries, the Zhou moved away from barbarian pressures, migrating towards the westernmost agricultural basin of North China, the lower Wei River valley, present-day Shaanxi province. [13]

All subsequent dynasty changes in China would be justified with arguments along these same lines. [13] The warrior's name is Cheng Tang, and he is the first ruler of the Shang Dynasty, which will control China from about 1600 BC to about 1100 BC. He has defeated the rulers of the Xia Dynasty, a mysterious dynasty that left no historical record. [14] Xia Dynasty The Neolithic age in China went from 10,000 B.C. to 2,000 B.C. during this time period people would wear tanned hides from animals they raised, woven grass, and fur. [10] Qin Dynasty Han Dynasty The period of disunity lasted from 220-589 CE and during this time there was no traditional or formal attire because China had been attacked by surrounding countries. [10] Chaos and war prevailed and the battles continued until eventually the state of Qin conquered the other states and unified China once more in 221 BCE, the beginning of the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BCE). [13] The period from 772 to 476 BCE is known in Chinese history as the Spring and Autumn Period, so called after the name of the preserved official chronicle of the small state of Lu, in which the events throughout China between these dates are recorded. [13] War after war, the different states started to annex each other and form the roughly 100 states that were in China in about 770 BCE - there were just 40 towards the end of the Spring and Autumn Period. [13]

Republic Period The Peoples Republic of China clothing consists of the Zhongshan suit. [10] The Han Chinese people have a long history in terms of the clothing worn. [17] There's no "typical" Chinese costume, although right now, if any 1 style of clothes epitomises "Chineseness", it will be the Cheongsam, or Qipao, which evolved from ancient clothing of the Manchu ethnic minority. [11] Chinese civilization, as described in mythology, begins with Pangu ( ), the creator of the universe, and a succession of legendary sage-emperors and culture heroes (among them are Huang Di, Yao, and Shun) who taught the ancient Chinese to communicate and to find sustenance, clothing, and shelter. [15]

At minimum, the Xia period marked an evolutionary stage between the late neolithic cultures and the typical Chinese urban civilization of the Shang dynasty. [15] Thousands of archaeological finds in the Huang He ( ), Henan Valley ( ) --the apparent cradle of Chinese civilization--provide evidence about the Shang ( ) dynasty, which endured roughly from 1700 to 1027 B.C. The Shang dynasty (also called the Yin ( ) dynasty in its later stages) is believed to have been founded by a rebel leader who overthrew the last Xia ruler. [15]

The first prehistoric dynasty is said to be Xia ( ), from about the twenty-first to the sixteenth century B.C. Until scientific excavations were made at early bronze-age sites at Anyang ( ), Henan ( ) Province, in 1928, it was difficult to separate myth from reality in regard to the Xia. [15] In this dynasty people would wear court dresses that were mainly black. [10] The kings, called wangs, beginning with Cheng Tang, stood at the top of the social scale in this extremely hierarchical and patriarchal dynasty. [14] In order to stabilize his sovereign, King Zhou, the last emperor of the Shang Dynasty, had Chang held in captivity for seven years. [12] He became king of Zhou in 1099 BCE during the last days of the Shang Dynasty. [13] King Zhou burned himself to death in despair during the war, which signaled the end of the Shang Dynasty. [12] The contradictions between the two communities intensified, and Wending, King of the Shang Dynasty assigned his followers to have Jili, the leader of the Zhou clan, killed. [12] The Zhou clan's increase threatened the sovereign of the Shang Dynasty (16th - 11th century BC). [12]

The Eastern Zhou was subdivided into the Spring and Autumn Periods (770 BC - 476 BC) and the Warring States Periods (476 BC - 221 BC), so it is also named the Spring and Autumn Periods and Warring States Periods. [12] Towards the end of the Eastern Zhou period, about 300 BC, artists began to create the first Chinese pictures of whole scenes with several people and a landscape, often hunting scenes. [16] Many of the ideas developed by figures like Laozi, Confucius, Mencius and Mozi, who all lived during the Eastern Zhou period, would shape the character of Chinese civilization up to the present day. [13]

It was also in the Eastern Zhou period that people in China first began to make other kinds of art. [16]

RANKED SELECTED SOURCES(33 source documents arranged by frequency of occurrence in the above report)

The Middle Tang Era: Wars and Dynastic Weakening

  • Civil War: In 751 and 754, armies of the Nanzhao domain in China won huge battles against Tang armies and gained control of the southern routes of the Silk Road, leading to Southeast Asia and Tibet. Then, in 755, An Lushan, general of a large Tang army, led a rebellion that lasted eight years, seriously undermining the power of the Tang empire.
  • External Attacks: Also in the mid-750s, the Arabs attacked from the west, defeating a Tang army and gaining control of western Tang lands along with the western Silk Road route. Then the Tibetan empire attacked, taking a large northern area of China and capturing Chang’an in 763. Although Chang’an was recaptured, these wars and land losses left the Tang Dynasty weakened and less able to maintain order throughout China.

The dragon robe was the daily dress for emperors. They considered the dragon an important symbol as dragons were thought to have emerged from heaven in ancient times. The robe had a round collar with buttons on the right. Most of the buttons were yellow in color because it was the official color for emperors. As well as the symbolic dragon, many other animals were featured such as the eagle, tiger, snake, and a devil.

Watch the video: Chinese Fashion Through the Dynasties