Based on historical records the Han dynasty ruled China for four centuries, from 206 BC to 220 AD Although the Qin Dynasty had previously unified China, the Han dynasty united and developed the institutions that have characterized most of China’s history since then. The Han dynasty was able to maintain its bureaucracy and military through a more efficient and comprehensive tax system than most contemporary empires. In addition, to get an increase in income, Han created an iron and salt monopoly. The salt monopoly has been a traditional source of income for parts of China since then, apparently lasting until 2014. Meanwhile, you may visit http://www.bandmadness.net/ to learn more about Chinese history and culture.
Han’s coffers allowed him to expand China’s boundaries from its traditional heartland in the Yellow River valley to what is now southern China. Southern China proves to be very important to China in the future as it can support a large population through rice farming. Thanks in part to the wealth of southern China, China’s socio-political development is bigger than that of its neighbors. This allowed the Chinese to easily seize or defeat them.
However, China has an eternal problem, namely, the nomads in the north. This constant harassment and attacks by nomads set the stage for the construction of the first Great Wall during the Qin Dynasty. During the Han dynasty, China attempted to encircle its enemies, leading to expeditions westward towards present-day Xinjiang and Central Asia.
This process is generally thought to have opened their horizons about other civilizations. This was a shocking development for the Chinese people, who until then believed they were the country’s only people. During this time, China was aware of Indian, Bactrian, Sogdian, Persian, and many more civilizations. This event is thought to have stimulated the development of a trade route which would later be called the Silk Road.
In order to control trade routes and defeat their enemies, Chinese troops occupied large parts of Xinjiang for decades, enabling them to project influence far away into the West. Buddhism also entered China via this route.