Origin of Ancient Chinese Writing for Kids

Feb 20

The people in China began writing about 1500 BC. They are considered the first few who started writing, only later than people in West Asia or Egypt. It was discovered that the earliest writing in China was on animal bones which priests used them to tell the future and they are often known as the “oracle bones”. The writings are in the form of pictures.

From bones, to strips of bamboo wood to silk cloth is where they write on. It is then when the earliest Chinese literature we known was written, which is during the Western Chou Dynasty on 800 BC. It is known as I Ching, a fortune-telling book, similar to the oracle bones mentioned earlier.Around 300 BC, the ever famous Art of War book was requested to be written by Sun Tzu as a general seek the best ways to organize armies and battles.

It is not until 100 BC that people in China invented paper to write on. It is cheaper than silk hence encourage more people to start writing and there are more people copied books during the Han Dynasty. This copying mechanism was then enhance to wood-block printing during the Tag Dynasty, about 700 AD. Copying was made easy with the method and books become cheaper. More people learned to read and many more started to write.

This marks the born of Chinese literacy and famous poets start being introduced from then on. Bai JuYi with his poem entitled Song of everlasting Sorrow becomes a hit during the Sung Dynasty, about 1000 AD. Book copying method is even further enhanced as people invented the movable clay type. This makes books even more cheaper and popular than before which contribute to a lot of great books being written from then on such as Lie Jie’s architectural standard setting for all of China, and also novels like Romance of the three kingdoms written by Luo Guanzhong during the Yuan Dynasty.


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