Liao dynasty

What is Liao dynasty known for?


architectural tradition

2006 volume 66 issue 2 pages 363–422 url http: www.jstor.org stable 25066819 accessdate 18 September 2012 * ) were a Mongolic people that inhabited far-eastern Mongolia, northern Inner Mongolia and northern Manchuria and were recorded from the time of the Northern Wei (386-534) until the rise of the Mongols of Genghis Khan in 1206 when the name "Mongol" and "Tatar" were applied to all the Shiwei tribes. They were closely related to the Khitan people to their south. As a result of pressure from the west, south and south-east they never established unified, semi-sedentarized empires like their neighbors, but remained at the level of a nomadic confederation led by tribal chieftains, alternately submitting to the Turks, the Chinese and the Khitan as the political climate evolved. The Mengwu Shiwei, one of the twenty Shiwei tribes during the Tang dynasty (618-907), were called the Menggu during the Liao dynasty (907-1125) and are generally considered to be the ancestors of the Mongols of Genghis Khan. The ancient Korean pronunciation of Mengwu (蒙兀 蒙瓦) is "Mong-ol". Mongolia is still called "Menggu" in Chinese today. After the fall of Liao, Song court wanted the Sixteen Prefectures as promised. Jin sold the land at a price of 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver. This price was considered to be extremely generous because it was the tribute that Song was already paying to the former Liao dynasty annually since the Shanyuan Treaty of 1005 AD.


ability

to kill herself and be buried with Taizu effectively ended the longstanding custom. Mote (1999), 52. Precisely because Prince Yelü Bei exemplified both Chinese and Khitan values, Empress Shulü Ping objected to Bei assuming the role of Emperor. The Empress believed that Bei's openness to Chinese culture detracted from his leadership ability as a Khitan, and she instead favored Emperor Taizu's more traditionalist second son, Emperor Taizong of Liao

Yelü Deguang . Deguang enjoyed not only the support of his mother, but also of the Khitan nobility. Realizing that he could not assume the throne, and that it would be dangerous to try, Bei campaigned in favor of allowing his younger brother to assume the throne, and by the end of 927, formally stated to his mother that Deguang's qualifications were superior to his own, functionally ending his ability to challenge Deguang's ascension to the throne. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 68-69

before being conquered by the Mongol Empire in 1218. Gernet (2008), 354. and Mote (1999), 205-206. An analysis by F. W. Mote concluded that at the time of the Liao dynasty's fall, "the Liao state remained strong, capable of functioning at reasonable levels and possessing greater resources of war than any of its enemies" and that "one cannot find signs of serious economic or fiscal breakdown that might have impoverished or crippled its ability to respond


song+founder

dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 111-112. The Song dynasty and the Chanyuan Treaty thumb left Zhao Kuangyin, also known as Emperor Taizu of Song, founder of the Song dynasty (File:Song Taizu.jpg) In 951, the Later Zhou emerged, the last of the five short-lived dynasties making up the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. The founding emperor of the Later Zhou died in 954 and was succeeded by his adopted son, who would rule with the name Emperor Shizong of Later Zhou. Shizong believed that the Liao dynasty was poised to invade the Zhou, and in 958 he launched a preemptive military campaign against the Liao, aiming to take the sixteen prefectures ceded to the Liao by Emperor Gaozu of Later Jin in 938. Emperor Shizong died in 959, before his army had even met the Liao forces. In 960 the commander-in-chief of the Later Zhou palace guard, Zhao Kuangyin, usurped the throne, then occupied by Emperor Shizong's seven-year-old son, and proclaimed himself the founder of the Song dynasty. Mote (1999), 13-14 and 67-68. Relations between the Liao and the Song were initially peaceful, with the two dynasties exchanging embassies in 974. Mote (1999), 69. Following the collapse of the Tang dynasty, several territories formed small, independent states that were never reunified during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. Additionally, several additional territories that were controlled by military governors during the Tang dynasty had fallen under the control of local warlords following the Tang collapse. Rather than focus on reclaiming land from the Liao dynasty, Zhao Kuangyin, who would take the title Emperor Taizu of Song, focused on reclaiming these smaller break-off territories. He would die in 976 having reestablished control over all but one of these territories, the Northern Han kingdom. Despite the Northern Han's status as a protectorate of the Liao dynasty, Emperor Taizu of Song launched an invasion of the kingdom in 976, only months before his death. The Northern Han received assistance from the Liao, and the invasion was repelled. Emperor Taizong of Song, brother of the founding emperor and the second emperor of the Song dynasty, launched a second invasion in 979. The Northern Han again received Liao assistance, but this invasion was successful; the Northern Han crumbled, and the Song were able to assume control of the territory. Emperor Taizong of Song immediately followed this victory with an attempted invasion of the sixteen prefectures, but the unrested and undersupplied Song troops were thoroughly routed by the Liao in the Battle of Gaoliang River. thumb China in year 1111. Clockwise from top: Liao dynasty, Song dynasty, Western Xia dynasty. (File:Song-Liao-Xixia-1111.png) Over the next two decades, the relationship between the Liao and Song continued to deteriorate. The Liao were continuously informed of Song attempts to create military alliances with other groups sharing a border with the Liao, and minor border skirmishes were common. Beginning in 999 Emperor Shengzong of Liao led a series of campaigns against the Song that, while generally successful on the battlefield, failed to secure anything of value from the Song. This changed in 1004 when Emperor Shengzong led a campaign that rapidly worked its way to right outside of the Song capital of Kaifeng by only conquering cities that quickly folded to the Liao army, while avoiding protracted sieges of the cities that resisted heavily. Emperor Zhenzong of Song marched out and met the Liao at Chanyuan, a small city on the Yellow River. In January 1005 the two dynasties signed the Chanyuan Treaty, which stipulated that the Song would give the Liao 200,000 bolts of silk and 100,000 ounces of silver each year, that the two emperors would address each other as equals, that they would finalize the location of their disputed border, and that the two dynasties would resume cordial relations. While the sums (referred to as gifts by the Song and as tributes by the Liao) were later increased to 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver per year out of Song fears that the Liao might form a military alliance with the Western Xia, no major wars were fought between the Liao and Song for over a century following the signing of the treaty. Mote (1999), 69-71. By signing the treaty the Song dynasty functionally ceded its claim over the sixteen prefectures. Smith (2006), 377. Imperial infighting Emperor Shengzong died in 1031, leaving behind instructions that named his son Yelü Zongzhen (Emperor Xingzong of Liao) as heir. Yelü Zongzhen, known historically by the name Emperor Xingzong of Liao, became the Emperor of the Liao dynasty at the age of fifteen, and his reign immediately became plagued with courtly infighting. Emperor Xingzong's mother was a low-ranking consort, Nuou Jin, but he was raised by Emperor Shengzong's wife, Empress Ji Dian. Nuou Jin quickly moved to marginalize Ji Dian and her supporters, fabricating a coup and using it to justify exiling Ji Dian and executing most of her supporters in several months of purges. Nuou Jin eventually sent assassins to kill Ji Dian; however, Ji Dian instead committed suicide. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 114. With her rival for power dead, Nuou Jin declared herself the regent and began personally conducting duties normally within the purview of the emperor. When it became clear that Emperor Xingzong was unhappy with his mother's grab for power, Nuou Jin plotted to replace the emperor with another of her sons, Zhong Yuan, whom Nuou Jin raised herself. Zhong Yuan informed the emperor of their mother's plans, however, and the emperor promptly exiled Nuou Jin. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 114-116. For the remainder of his reign, Emperor Xingzong would have to compete for power with his mother, whose supporters still held key postings, and whose influence was so great that she was eventually allowed to return to the capital and undergo a ceremony to symbolically de-exile herself. Zhong Yuan, for his part, would be rewarded for revealing his mother's plot by being given a succession of higher- and higher-ranking positions, culminating with a governorship outside of the capital. Historian Frederick W. Mote explains the importance of this factional infighting and its relation to the Liao dynasty's downfall by stating that it "shows to what extent the succession issue within the imperial clan still was the source of weakness in the leadership of the state. It wasted people, diverted energies, and deflected the attention of the rulers from the tasks of governing." Mote (1999), 200. thumb right 200px The Pagoda of Fogong Temple (File:The Fugong Temple Wooden Pagoda.jpg), built by Emperor Daozong in 1056 at the site of his grandmother's family home. Steinhardt (1997), 20. Emperor Xingzong died in 1055. His eldest son, Yelü Hongji (Emperor Daozong of Liao) (who would later be known by the name Emperor Daozong of Liao), assumed the throne having already gained experience in governing while his father was alive. Unlike his father, Emperor Daozong did not face a succession crisis. While both Ji Dian and Zhong Yuan remained alive, and both had the political influence to interfere with the succession process, neither did. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 124-125. While Emperor Daozong's reign started off strong, it too was eventually plagued by factional infighting, aggravated by the emperor's own general weakness. The emperor's first major error was in ordering the execution of Xiao A La, a loyal minister and close friend of the emperor, whom the emperor was nonetheless convinced to execute by a rival minister. The 14th-century ''History of Liao'' speculates that had Xiao A La not been killed, two major incidents that came to dominate Emperor Daozong's reign would have been avoided. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 125. The first of these incidents was a rebellion in 1063, when several high-ranking members of the Yelü clan, led by a grandson of Emperor Shengzong, attempted to assassinate Emperor Daozong while he was on a hunting trip. He was saved with the assistance of troops led by his mother, Empress Dowager Ren Yi, and he retaliated by executing all of the people involved in the plot, as well as their immediate families. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 128-134. This major change in leadership solidified the power of the chancellor Yelü Yixin and his ally Yelü Renxian, a chancellor and military leader. When Yelü Renxian died in 1072, Yelü Yixin began to view Emperor Daozong's son and heir apparent, Prince Jun, as the only possible threat to Yelü Yixin's power, and set in motion plans to eliminate the prince. He first eliminated Prince Jun's mother, the emperor's wife, by fabricating evidence that she had an affair with a palace musician. Believing Yelü Yixin's trap, Emperor Daozong ordered his wife to commit suicide. Yelü Yixin then fabricated a coup by implicating his own enemies within the court of planning to depose of Emperor Daozong and place Prince Jun on the throne. While the emperor was initially unmoved, Yelü Yixin eventually convinced him to exile his son by creating a false confession. Prince Jun was immediately exiled, at which point Yelü Yixin sent assassins to eliminate the prince and his wife, preventing both the prince from being returned to power and Yelü Yixin's plot from being discovered. Yelü Yixin's treachery was eventually discovered when, in 1079, he attempted to convince the emperor to leave the new heir at the palace during a hunting trip. When other members of the court protested that the young boy would be in mortal peril if left behind with Yelü Yixin, the emperor finally saw through Yelü Yixin. By 1080 Yelü Yixin was stripped of his rank and sent to a low-ranking post outside of the capital. Shortly afterwards he was executed. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 135. Aside from the machinations of Yelü Yixin, the only other event of note from Emperor Daozong's rule was a war fought between 1092 and 1102 between the Liao and a Mongolian, possibly Tatar tribe, group known as the Zubu. The Zubu were located at the northwest border of Liao territory and had fought several wars with the Liao when the Liao tried to expand in that direction. In 1092 the Liao attacked several other tribes in the northwest, and by 1093 the Zubu attacked the Liao, striking deep into Khitan territory. It took until 1100 for the Liao to capture and kill the Zubu chieftain, and another two years to fight off the remaining Zubu forces. The war against the Zubu was the last successful military campaign waged by the Liao dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 138-139. Rise of the Jin and fall of the Liao ) were a Mongolic people that inhabited far-eastern Mongolia, northern Inner Mongolia and northern Manchuria and were recorded from the time of the Northern Wei (386-534) until the rise of the Mongols of Genghis Khan in 1206 when the name "Mongol" and "Tatar" were applied to all the Shiwei tribes. They were closely related to the Khitan people to their south. As a result of pressure from the west, south and south-east they never established unified, semi-sedentarized empires like their neighbors, but remained at the level of a nomadic confederation led by tribal chieftains, alternately submitting to the Turks, the Chinese and the Khitan as the political climate evolved. The Mengwu Shiwei, one of the twenty Shiwei tribes during the Tang dynasty (618-907), were called the Menggu during the Liao dynasty (907-1125) and are generally considered to be the ancestors of the Mongols of Genghis Khan. The ancient Korean pronunciation of Mengwu (蒙兀 蒙瓦) is "Mong-ol". Mongolia is still called "Menggu" in Chinese today. After the fall of Liao, Song court wanted the Sixteen Prefectures as promised. Jin sold the land at a price of 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver. This price was considered to be extremely generous because it was the tribute that Song was already paying to the former Liao dynasty annually since the Shanyuan Treaty of 1005 AD.


relationship

numerous strategic passes and fortifications, the Khitans now had unrestricted access to the plains of northern China. Mote (1999), 65. Shi Jingtang also agreed to treat Emperor Taizong of Liao as his own father, a move that symbolically elevated Taizong and the Liao to a superior position. The relationship between the Liao and the Later Jin soured after the death of Shi Jingtang in 942 and the elevation to the throne

;Twitchett and Tietze 72-74" The death of Taizong set up a second succession crisis, again instigated by Empress Dowager Yingtian and fueled by the conflict between Chinese primogeniture and Khitan succession customs. Yelü Ruan (Emperor Shizong of Liao), oldest son of Prince Bei and nephew of Emperor Taizong, proclaimed himself Emperor while still in Hebei. Emperor Taizong raised Yelü Ruan, following Yelü Bei's departure for the Later Tang, and the relationship between uncle and nephew

relationship between the Goryeo and Song Dynasties, Liao-Goryeo relations were exceedingly poor. Both Liao and Goryeo saw each other as posing a military threat; the Khitans feared that Goryeo would attempt to foment rebellions among the Balhae population in Liao territory, while Goryeo feared invasion by the Liao. The Khitans did invade Goryeo (First conflict in the Goryeo–Khitan War) in 992, sending a force that the Liao commander claimed to be 800,000 strong, and demanding that Goryeo cede


quot shows'

positions, culminating with a governorship outside of the capital. Historian Frederick W. Mote explains the importance of this factional infighting and its relation to the Liao dynasty's downfall by stating that it "shows to what extent the succession issue within the imperial clan still was the source of weakness in the leadership of the state. It wasted people, diverted energies, and deflected the attention of the rulers from


family including

a permanent ruler at his accession in 907, securing his position by killing most of the other Khitan chieftains. Wittfogel and Feng (1946), 398. Between 907 and 910 Abaoji's rule went unchallenged. It was only after 910, when Abaoji disregarded the Khitan tradition that another member of the family assume the position of Great Khan, that his rule came under direct challenge. In both 912 and 913 members of Abaoji's family, including most of his brothers, attempted armed insurrections. After the first insurrection was discovered and defeated, Abaoji pardoned the conspirators. After the second, only his brothers were pardoned, with the other conspirators suffering violent deaths. The brothers plotted additional rebellions in 917 and 918, both of which were easily crushed. Wittfogel and Feng (1946), 400-402. In 916, at what would have been the end of his third term as Khitan Grand Khan, Abaoji made a number of changes moving the Khitan state closer to the model of governance used by the Chinese dynasties. He assumed the title of Celestial Emperor and designated an era name (Chinese era name), named his oldest son Yelü Bei as his successor, and commissioned the construction of a Confucian temple. Two years later he established a capital city, Shangjing (上京), which imitated the model of a Chinese capital city. Mote (1999), 41. and Wittfogel and Feng (1946), 401. Before his death in 926, Abaoji greatly expanded the areas that the Khitans controlled. Mote (1999), 47-49. At its height, the Liao dynasty encompassed modern-day Mongolia, parts of Kazakhstan and the Russian Far East, and the Chinese provinces of Hebei, Heilongjiang, Inner Mongolia, Jilin, Liaoning, and Shanxi. Shen (2001), 264. Succession issues and the occupation of Kaifeng ) were a Mongolic people that inhabited far-eastern Mongolia, northern Inner Mongolia and northern Manchuria and were recorded from the time of the Northern Wei (386-534) until the rise of the Mongols of Genghis Khan in 1206 when the name "Mongol" and "Tatar" were applied to all the Shiwei tribes. They were closely related to the Khitan people to their south. As a result of pressure from the west, south and south-east they never established unified, semi-sedentarized empires like their neighbors, but remained at the level of a nomadic confederation led by tribal chieftains, alternately submitting to the Turks, the Chinese and the Khitan as the political climate evolved. The Mengwu Shiwei, one of the twenty Shiwei tribes during the Tang dynasty (618-907), were called the Menggu during the Liao dynasty (907-1125) and are generally considered to be the ancestors of the Mongols of Genghis Khan. The ancient Korean pronunciation of Mengwu (蒙兀 蒙瓦) is "Mong-ol". Mongolia is still called "Menggu" in Chinese today. After the fall of Liao, Song court wanted the Sixteen Prefectures as promised. Jin sold the land at a price of 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver. This price was considered to be extremely generous because it was the tribute that Song was already paying to the former Liao dynasty annually since the Shanyuan Treaty of 1005 AD.


opera title

, diffused through border warfare. Crump (1990), 25-26 Another influence of the Liao cultural tradition is seen in the Yuan dynasty's ''zaju'' (杂剧) theater, its associated orchestration


arts history

associated with the Liao dynasty are considerable, and a number of various statuary and other artifacts exist in museums and other collections, major questions remain over the exact nature and extent of the influence of the Liao Khitan culture upon subsequent developments, such as the musical and theatrical arts. History Khitans before Abaoji Neither the origins, ethnic makeup, nor early history of the Khitans are well documented in historical records


cultural relationship

launching two invasions, in 975 and 985, the Liao forces were unable to defeat the Ding'an. Unable to eliminate the threat, and weary of Jurchen (Jurchen people) groups also inhabiting the region, the Liao established three forts with military colonies in the Yalu River valley area. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 102. With military action in close proximity to Goryeo territory, coupled with a cancelled Liao invasion of Goryeo in 947 and a strong diplomatic and cultural

relationship between the Goryeo and Song Dynasties, Liao-Goryeo relations were exceedingly poor. Both Liao and Goryeo saw each other as posing a military threat; the Khitans feared that Goryeo would attempt to foment rebellions among the Balhae population in Liao territory, while Goryeo feared invasion by the Liao. The Khitans did invade Goryeo (First conflict in the Goryeo–Khitan War) in 992, sending a force that the Liao commander claimed to be 800,000 strong, and demanding that Goryeo cede to territories along the Yalu River. Goryeo appealed for assistance from the Song dynasty, with which they had a military alliance, but no Song assistance came. The Khitans made steady southward progress before reaching the Ch'ongch'on River, at which point they called for negotiations between Liao and Goryeo military leaders. While the Liao initially demanded total surrender from Goryeo, and Goryeo initially appeared willing to consider it, the Korean negotiator was eventually able to convince the Khitans to accept a resolution in which the Goryeo dynasty became a tributary state to the Liao dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 103. By 994, regular diplomatic exchanges between Liao and Goryeo began, and the relationship between Goryeo and Song irrevocably chilled. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 103-104. The peace did not last two decades. In 1009 the Goryeo general Gang Jo murdered King Mokjong of Goryeo (Mokjong of Goryeo) and put King Hyeonjong of Goryeo (Hyeonjong of Goryeo) on the throne with the intention of serving as the boy's regent (Regency (government)). The Liao immediately sent an army of 400,000 men to Goryeo (Second conflict in the Goryeo–Khitan War) to punish Gang Jo; however, after an initial period of military success and the breakdown of several attempts at peace negotiations, Goryeo and Liao entered a decade of continuous warfare. In 1018 the Khitans faced the most significant military defeat (Third conflict in the Goryeo–Khitan War) in the dynasty's history, but by 1019 they had already assembled another large army to march on Goryeo. At this point both sides realized that they could not defeat each other militarily, so in 1020 King Hyeonjong resumed sending tribute to the Liao, and in 1022 the Liao officially recognized the legitimacy of King Hyeonjong's reign. Goryeo would remain a vassal, and the relationship between Liao and Goryeo would remain peaceful until the end of the Liao dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 111-112. The Song dynasty and the Chanyuan Treaty thumb left Zhao Kuangyin, also known as Emperor Taizu of Song, founder of the Song dynasty (File:Song Taizu.jpg) In 951, the Later Zhou emerged, the last of the five short-lived dynasties making up the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. The founding emperor of the Later Zhou died in 954 and was succeeded by his adopted son, who would rule with the name Emperor Shizong of Later Zhou. Shizong believed that the Liao dynasty was poised to invade the Zhou, and in 958 he launched a preemptive military campaign against the Liao, aiming to take the sixteen prefectures ceded to the Liao by Emperor Gaozu of Later Jin in 938. Emperor Shizong died in 959, before his army had even met the Liao forces. In 960 the commander-in-chief of the Later Zhou palace guard, Zhao Kuangyin, usurped the throne, then occupied by Emperor Shizong's seven-year-old son, and proclaimed himself the founder of the Song dynasty. Mote (1999), 13-14 and 67-68. Relations between the Liao and the Song were initially peaceful, with the two dynasties exchanging embassies in 974. Mote (1999), 69. Following the collapse of the Tang dynasty, several territories formed small, independent states that were never reunified during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. Additionally, several additional territories that were controlled by military governors during the Tang dynasty had fallen under the control of local warlords following the Tang collapse. Rather than focus on reclaiming land from the Liao dynasty, Zhao Kuangyin, who would take the title Emperor Taizu of Song, focused on reclaiming these smaller break-off territories. He would die in 976 having reestablished control over all but one of these territories, the Northern Han kingdom. Despite the Northern Han's status as a protectorate of the Liao dynasty, Emperor Taizu of Song launched an invasion of the kingdom in 976, only months before his death. The Northern Han received assistance from the Liao, and the invasion was repelled. Emperor Taizong of Song, brother of the founding emperor and the second emperor of the Song dynasty, launched a second invasion in 979. The Northern Han again received Liao assistance, but this invasion was successful; the Northern Han crumbled, and the Song were able to assume control of the territory. Emperor Taizong of Song immediately followed this victory with an attempted invasion of the sixteen prefectures, but the unrested and undersupplied Song troops were thoroughly routed by the Liao in the Battle of Gaoliang River. thumb China in year 1111. Clockwise from top: Liao dynasty, Song dynasty, Western Xia dynasty. (File:Song-Liao-Xixia-1111.png) Over the next two decades, the relationship between the Liao and Song continued to deteriorate. The Liao were continuously informed of Song attempts to create military alliances with other groups sharing a border with the Liao, and minor border skirmishes were common. Beginning in 999 Emperor Shengzong of Liao led a series of campaigns against the Song that, while generally successful on the battlefield, failed to secure anything of value from the Song. This changed in 1004 when Emperor Shengzong led a campaign that rapidly worked its way to right outside of the Song capital of Kaifeng by only conquering cities that quickly folded to the Liao army, while avoiding protracted sieges of the cities that resisted heavily. Emperor Zhenzong of Song marched out and met the Liao at Chanyuan, a small city on the Yellow River. In January 1005 the two dynasties signed the Chanyuan Treaty, which stipulated that the Song would give the Liao 200,000 bolts of silk and 100,000 ounces of silver each year, that the two emperors would address each other as equals, that they would finalize the location of their disputed border, and that the two dynasties would resume cordial relations. While the sums (referred to as gifts by the Song and as tributes by the Liao) were later increased to 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver per year out of Song fears that the Liao might form a military alliance with the Western Xia, no major wars were fought between the Liao and Song for over a century following the signing of the treaty. Mote (1999), 69-71. By signing the treaty the Song dynasty functionally ceded its claim over the sixteen prefectures. Smith (2006), 377. Imperial infighting Emperor Shengzong died in 1031, leaving behind instructions that named his son Yelü Zongzhen (Emperor Xingzong of Liao) as heir. Yelü Zongzhen, known historically by the name Emperor Xingzong of Liao, became the Emperor of the Liao dynasty at the age of fifteen, and his reign immediately became plagued with courtly infighting. Emperor Xingzong's mother was a low-ranking consort, Nuou Jin, but he was raised by Emperor Shengzong's wife, Empress Ji Dian. Nuou Jin quickly moved to marginalize Ji Dian and her supporters, fabricating a coup and using it to justify exiling Ji Dian and executing most of her supporters in several months of purges. Nuou Jin eventually sent assassins to kill Ji Dian; however, Ji Dian instead committed suicide. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 114. With her rival for power dead, Nuou Jin declared herself the regent and began personally conducting duties normally within the purview of the emperor. When it became clear that Emperor Xingzong was unhappy with his mother's grab for power, Nuou Jin plotted to replace the emperor with another of her sons, Zhong Yuan, whom Nuou Jin raised herself. Zhong Yuan informed the emperor of their mother's plans, however, and the emperor promptly exiled Nuou Jin. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 114-116. For the remainder of his reign, Emperor Xingzong would have to compete for power with his mother, whose supporters still held key postings, and whose influence was so great that she was eventually allowed to return to the capital and undergo a ceremony to symbolically de-exile herself. Zhong Yuan, for his part, would be rewarded for revealing his mother's plot by being given a succession of higher- and higher-ranking positions, culminating with a governorship outside of the capital. Historian Frederick W. Mote explains the importance of this factional infighting and its relation to the Liao dynasty's downfall by stating that it "shows to what extent the succession issue within the imperial clan still was the source of weakness in the leadership of the state. It wasted people, diverted energies, and deflected the attention of the rulers from the tasks of governing." Mote (1999), 200. thumb right 200px The Pagoda of Fogong Temple (File:The Fugong Temple Wooden Pagoda.jpg), built by Emperor Daozong in 1056 at the site of his grandmother's family home. Steinhardt (1997), 20. Emperor Xingzong died in 1055. His eldest son, Yelü Hongji (Emperor Daozong of Liao) (who would later be known by the name Emperor Daozong of Liao), assumed the throne having already gained experience in governing while his father was alive. Unlike his father, Emperor Daozong did not face a succession crisis. While both Ji Dian and Zhong Yuan remained alive, and both had the political influence to interfere with the succession process, neither did. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 124-125. While Emperor Daozong's reign started off strong, it too was eventually plagued by factional infighting, aggravated by the emperor's own general weakness. The emperor's first major error was in ordering the execution of Xiao A La, a loyal minister and close friend of the emperor, whom the emperor was nonetheless convinced to execute by a rival minister. The 14th-century ''History of Liao'' speculates that had Xiao A La not been killed, two major incidents that came to dominate Emperor Daozong's reign would have been avoided. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 125. The first of these incidents was a rebellion in 1063, when several high-ranking members of the Yelü clan, led by a grandson of Emperor Shengzong, attempted to assassinate Emperor Daozong while he was on a hunting trip. He was saved with the assistance of troops led by his mother, Empress Dowager Ren Yi, and he retaliated by executing all of the people involved in the plot, as well as their immediate families. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 128-134. This major change in leadership solidified the power of the chancellor Yelü Yixin and his ally Yelü Renxian, a chancellor and military leader. When Yelü Renxian died in 1072, Yelü Yixin began to view Emperor Daozong's son and heir apparent, Prince Jun, as the only possible threat to Yelü Yixin's power, and set in motion plans to eliminate the prince. He first eliminated Prince Jun's mother, the emperor's wife, by fabricating evidence that she had an affair with a palace musician. Believing Yelü Yixin's trap, Emperor Daozong ordered his wife to commit suicide. Yelü Yixin then fabricated a coup by implicating his own enemies within the court of planning to depose of Emperor Daozong and place Prince Jun on the throne. While the emperor was initially unmoved, Yelü Yixin eventually convinced him to exile his son by creating a false confession. Prince Jun was immediately exiled, at which point Yelü Yixin sent assassins to eliminate the prince and his wife, preventing both the prince from being returned to power and Yelü Yixin's plot from being discovered. Yelü Yixin's treachery was eventually discovered when, in 1079, he attempted to convince the emperor to leave the new heir at the palace during a hunting trip. When other members of the court protested that the young boy would be in mortal peril if left behind with Yelü Yixin, the emperor finally saw through Yelü Yixin. By 1080 Yelü Yixin was stripped of his rank and sent to a low-ranking post outside of the capital. Shortly afterwards he was executed. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 135. Aside from the machinations of Yelü Yixin, the only other event of note from Emperor Daozong's rule was a war fought between 1092 and 1102 between the Liao and a Mongolian, possibly Tatar tribe, group known as the Zubu. The Zubu were located at the northwest border of Liao territory and had fought several wars with the Liao when the Liao tried to expand in that direction. In 1092 the Liao attacked several other tribes in the northwest, and by 1093 the Zubu attacked the Liao, striking deep into Khitan territory. It took until 1100 for the Liao to capture and kill the Zubu chieftain, and another two years to fight off the remaining Zubu forces. The war against the Zubu was the last successful military campaign waged by the Liao dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 138-139. Rise of the Jin and fall of the Liao ) were a Mongolic people that inhabited far-eastern Mongolia, northern Inner Mongolia and northern Manchuria and were recorded from the time of the Northern Wei (386-534) until the rise of the Mongols of Genghis Khan in 1206 when the name "Mongol" and "Tatar" were applied to all the Shiwei tribes. They were closely related to the Khitan people to their south. As a result of pressure from the west, south and south-east they never established unified, semi-sedentarized empires like their neighbors, but remained at the level of a nomadic confederation led by tribal chieftains, alternately submitting to the Turks, the Chinese and the Khitan as the political climate evolved. The Mengwu Shiwei, one of the twenty Shiwei tribes during the Tang dynasty (618-907), were called the Menggu during the Liao dynasty (907-1125) and are generally considered to be the ancestors of the Mongols of Genghis Khan. The ancient Korean pronunciation of Mengwu (蒙兀 蒙瓦) is "Mong-ol". Mongolia is still called "Menggu" in Chinese today. After the fall of Liao, Song court wanted the Sixteen Prefectures as promised. Jin sold the land at a price of 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver. This price was considered to be extremely generous because it was the tribute that Song was already paying to the former Liao dynasty annually since the Shanyuan Treaty of 1005 AD.


military success

and put King Hyeonjong of Goryeo (Hyeonjong of Goryeo) on the throne with the intention of serving as the boy's regent (Regency (government)). The Liao immediately sent an army of 400,000 men to Goryeo (Second conflict in the Goryeo–Khitan War) to punish Gang Jo; however, after an initial period of military success and the breakdown of several attempts at peace negotiations, Goryeo and Liao entered a decade of continuous warfare. In 1018 the Khitans faced the most significant military defeat (Third conflict in the Goryeo–Khitan War) in the dynasty's history, but by 1019 they had already assembled another large army to march on Goryeo. At this point both sides realized that they could not defeat each other militarily, so in 1020 King Hyeonjong resumed sending tribute to the Liao, and in 1022 the Liao officially recognized the legitimacy of King Hyeonjong's reign. Goryeo would remain a vassal, and the relationship between Liao and Goryeo would remain peaceful until the end of the Liao dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 111-112. The Song dynasty and the Chanyuan Treaty thumb left Zhao Kuangyin, also known as Emperor Taizu of Song, founder of the Song dynasty (File:Song Taizu.jpg) In 951, the Later Zhou emerged, the last of the five short-lived dynasties making up the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. The founding emperor of the Later Zhou died in 954 and was succeeded by his adopted son, who would rule with the name Emperor Shizong of Later Zhou. Shizong believed that the Liao dynasty was poised to invade the Zhou, and in 958 he launched a preemptive military campaign against the Liao, aiming to take the sixteen prefectures ceded to the Liao by Emperor Gaozu of Later Jin in 938. Emperor Shizong died in 959, before his army had even met the Liao forces. In 960 the commander-in-chief of the Later Zhou palace guard, Zhao Kuangyin, usurped the throne, then occupied by Emperor Shizong's seven-year-old son, and proclaimed himself the founder of the Song dynasty. Mote (1999), 13-14 and 67-68. Relations between the Liao and the Song were initially peaceful, with the two dynasties exchanging embassies in 974. Mote (1999), 69. Following the collapse of the Tang dynasty, several territories formed small, independent states that were never reunified during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. Additionally, several additional territories that were controlled by military governors during the Tang dynasty had fallen under the control of local warlords following the Tang collapse. Rather than focus on reclaiming land from the Liao dynasty, Zhao Kuangyin, who would take the title Emperor Taizu of Song, focused on reclaiming these smaller break-off territories. He would die in 976 having reestablished control over all but one of these territories, the Northern Han kingdom. Despite the Northern Han's status as a protectorate of the Liao dynasty, Emperor Taizu of Song launched an invasion of the kingdom in 976, only months before his death. The Northern Han received assistance from the Liao, and the invasion was repelled. Emperor Taizong of Song, brother of the founding emperor and the second emperor of the Song dynasty, launched a second invasion in 979. The Northern Han again received Liao assistance, but this invasion was successful; the Northern Han crumbled, and the Song were able to assume control of the territory. Emperor Taizong of Song immediately followed this victory with an attempted invasion of the sixteen prefectures, but the unrested and undersupplied Song troops were thoroughly routed by the Liao in the Battle of Gaoliang River. thumb China in year 1111. Clockwise from top: Liao dynasty, Song dynasty, Western Xia dynasty. (File:Song-Liao-Xixia-1111.png) Over the next two decades, the relationship between the Liao and Song continued to deteriorate. The Liao were continuously informed of Song attempts to create military alliances with other groups sharing a border with the Liao, and minor border skirmishes were common. Beginning in 999 Emperor Shengzong of Liao led a series of campaigns against the Song that, while generally successful on the battlefield, failed to secure anything of value from the Song. This changed in 1004 when Emperor Shengzong led a campaign that rapidly worked its way to right outside of the Song capital of Kaifeng by only conquering cities that quickly folded to the Liao army, while avoiding protracted sieges of the cities that resisted heavily. Emperor Zhenzong of Song marched out and met the Liao at Chanyuan, a small city on the Yellow River. In January 1005 the two dynasties signed the Chanyuan Treaty, which stipulated that the Song would give the Liao 200,000 bolts of silk and 100,000 ounces of silver each year, that the two emperors would address each other as equals, that they would finalize the location of their disputed border, and that the two dynasties would resume cordial relations. While the sums (referred to as gifts by the Song and as tributes by the Liao) were later increased to 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver per year out of Song fears that the Liao might form a military alliance with the Western Xia, no major wars were fought between the Liao and Song for over a century following the signing of the treaty. Mote (1999), 69-71. By signing the treaty the Song dynasty functionally ceded its claim over the sixteen prefectures. Smith (2006), 377. Imperial infighting Emperor Shengzong died in 1031, leaving behind instructions that named his son Yelü Zongzhen (Emperor Xingzong of Liao) as heir. Yelü Zongzhen, known historically by the name Emperor Xingzong of Liao, became the Emperor of the Liao dynasty at the age of fifteen, and his reign immediately became plagued with courtly infighting. Emperor Xingzong's mother was a low-ranking consort, Nuou Jin, but he was raised by Emperor Shengzong's wife, Empress Ji Dian. Nuou Jin quickly moved to marginalize Ji Dian and her supporters, fabricating a coup and using it to justify exiling Ji Dian and executing most of her supporters in several months of purges. Nuou Jin eventually sent assassins to kill Ji Dian; however, Ji Dian instead committed suicide. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 114. With her rival for power dead, Nuou Jin declared herself the regent and began personally conducting duties normally within the purview of the emperor. When it became clear that Emperor Xingzong was unhappy with his mother's grab for power, Nuou Jin plotted to replace the emperor with another of her sons, Zhong Yuan, whom Nuou Jin raised herself. Zhong Yuan informed the emperor of their mother's plans, however, and the emperor promptly exiled Nuou Jin. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 114-116. For the remainder of his reign, Emperor Xingzong would have to compete for power with his mother, whose supporters still held key postings, and whose influence was so great that she was eventually allowed to return to the capital and undergo a ceremony to symbolically de-exile herself. Zhong Yuan, for his part, would be rewarded for revealing his mother's plot by being given a succession of higher- and higher-ranking positions, culminating with a governorship outside of the capital. Historian Frederick W. Mote explains the importance of this factional infighting and its relation to the Liao dynasty's downfall by stating that it "shows to what extent the succession issue within the imperial clan still was the source of weakness in the leadership of the state. It wasted people, diverted energies, and deflected the attention of the rulers from the tasks of governing." Mote (1999), 200. thumb right 200px The Pagoda of Fogong Temple (File:The Fugong Temple Wooden Pagoda.jpg), built by Emperor Daozong in 1056 at the site of his grandmother's family home. Steinhardt (1997), 20. Emperor Xingzong died in 1055. His eldest son, Yelü Hongji (Emperor Daozong of Liao) (who would later be known by the name Emperor Daozong of Liao), assumed the throne having already gained experience in governing while his father was alive. Unlike his father, Emperor Daozong did not face a succession crisis. While both Ji Dian and Zhong Yuan remained alive, and both had the political influence to interfere with the succession process, neither did. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 124-125. While Emperor Daozong's reign started off strong, it too was eventually plagued by factional infighting, aggravated by the emperor's own general weakness. The emperor's first major error was in ordering the execution of Xiao A La, a loyal minister and close friend of the emperor, whom the emperor was nonetheless convinced to execute by a rival minister. The 14th-century ''History of Liao'' speculates that had Xiao A La not been killed, two major incidents that came to dominate Emperor Daozong's reign would have been avoided. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 125. The first of these incidents was a rebellion in 1063, when several high-ranking members of the Yelü clan, led by a grandson of Emperor Shengzong, attempted to assassinate Emperor Daozong while he was on a hunting trip. He was saved with the assistance of troops led by his mother, Empress Dowager Ren Yi, and he retaliated by executing all of the people involved in the plot, as well as their immediate families. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 128-134. This major change in leadership solidified the power of the chancellor Yelü Yixin and his ally Yelü Renxian, a chancellor and military leader. When Yelü Renxian died in 1072, Yelü Yixin began to view Emperor Daozong's son and heir apparent, Prince Jun, as the only possible threat to Yelü Yixin's power, and set in motion plans to eliminate the prince. He first eliminated Prince Jun's mother, the emperor's wife, by fabricating evidence that she had an affair with a palace musician. Believing Yelü Yixin's trap, Emperor Daozong ordered his wife to commit suicide. Yelü Yixin then fabricated a coup by implicating his own enemies within the court of planning to depose of Emperor Daozong and place Prince Jun on the throne. While the emperor was initially unmoved, Yelü Yixin eventually convinced him to exile his son by creating a false confession. Prince Jun was immediately exiled, at which point Yelü Yixin sent assassins to eliminate the prince and his wife, preventing both the prince from being returned to power and Yelü Yixin's plot from being discovered. Yelü Yixin's treachery was eventually discovered when, in 1079, he attempted to convince the emperor to leave the new heir at the palace during a hunting trip. When other members of the court protested that the young boy would be in mortal peril if left behind with Yelü Yixin, the emperor finally saw through Yelü Yixin. By 1080 Yelü Yixin was stripped of his rank and sent to a low-ranking post outside of the capital. Shortly afterwards he was executed. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 135. Aside from the machinations of Yelü Yixin, the only other event of note from Emperor Daozong's rule was a war fought between 1092 and 1102 between the Liao and a Mongolian, possibly Tatar tribe, group known as the Zubu. The Zubu were located at the northwest border of Liao territory and had fought several wars with the Liao when the Liao tried to expand in that direction. In 1092 the Liao attacked several other tribes in the northwest, and by 1093 the Zubu attacked the Liao, striking deep into Khitan territory. It took until 1100 for the Liao to capture and kill the Zubu chieftain, and another two years to fight off the remaining Zubu forces. The war against the Zubu was the last successful military campaign waged by the Liao dynasty. Twitchett and Tietze (1994), 138-139. Rise of the Jin and fall of the Liao ) were a Mongolic people that inhabited far-eastern Mongolia, northern Inner Mongolia and northern Manchuria and were recorded from the time of the Northern Wei (386-534) until the rise of the Mongols of Genghis Khan in 1206 when the name "Mongol" and "Tatar" were applied to all the Shiwei tribes. They were closely related to the Khitan people to their south. As a result of pressure from the west, south and south-east they never established unified, semi-sedentarized empires like their neighbors, but remained at the level of a nomadic confederation led by tribal chieftains, alternately submitting to the Turks, the Chinese and the Khitan as the political climate evolved. The Mengwu Shiwei, one of the twenty Shiwei tribes during the Tang dynasty (618-907), were called the Menggu during the Liao dynasty (907-1125) and are generally considered to be the ancestors of the Mongols of Genghis Khan. The ancient Korean pronunciation of Mengwu (蒙兀 蒙瓦) is "Mong-ol". Mongolia is still called "Menggu" in Chinese today. After the fall of Liao, Song court wanted the Sixteen Prefectures as promised. Jin sold the land at a price of 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver. This price was considered to be extremely generous because it was the tribute that Song was already paying to the former Liao dynasty annually since the Shanyuan Treaty of 1005 AD.

Liao dynasty

The '''Liao dynasty''' (Khitan (Khitan language): ''Mos Jælud''; Mongolian (Mongolian language): Ляо Улс Lyao Uls; was an empire in East Asia that ruled over Mongolia and portions of the Russian Far East, northern Korea, and northern China proper from 907 to 1125. The Khitan Empire was the first state to control all of Manchuria. Ruins of Identity: Ethnogenesis in the Japanese Islands By Mark Hudson Ledyard, 1983, 323 Taking its name from the Liao River in southern Manchuria, it was founded by the Khitan (Khitan people) Great Khan Abaoji (Emperor Taizu of Liao) around the time of the collapse of the Han Chinese Tang dynasty. Almost immediately after its founding, the Liao dynasty began a process of territorial expansion, with its founder Abaoji leading a successful conquest of the Balhae. Later emperors would gain sixteen Chinese prefectures (Sixteen Prefectures) by fueling a proxy war that led to the collapse of the Later Tang (923–936), and would make both the Goryeo and the Song dynasty into tributary states following successful military campaigns into their territories.

Tension between traditional Khitan social and political practices and Chinese customs was a defining feature of the dynasty. This tension led to a series of succession crises; Liao emperors favored the Chinese concept of primogeniture, while much of the rest of the Khitan elite supported the traditional method of succession by the strongest candidate. So different were Khitan and Chinese practices that Abaoji set up two parallel governments. The Northern Administration governed Khitan areas following traditional Khitan practices, while the Southern Administration governed areas with large non-Khitan populations, adopting traditional Chinese governmental practices. Differences between Chinese and Khitan society included gender roles and marital practices: the Khitans took an egalitarian view towards gender, in sharp contrast to Chinese cultural practices that placed women as subservient to men. Khitan women were taught to hunt, managed family property, and held military posts. Many marriages were not arranged, women were not required to be virgins until their first marriage, and women had the right to divorce and remarry.

The Liao dynasty was destroyed by the Jurchen people of the Jin dynasty (Jin dynasty (1115-1234)), in 1125, with the Jin capture of Liao emperor Tianzuo (Emperor Tianzuo of Liao). However, remnants of its people, led by Yelü Dashi, established the Western Liao dynasty, also known as the Kara-Khitan Khanate, which ruled over parts of Central Asia for almost a century before being conquered by the army of the Mongolian ruler Genghis Khan. Although cultural achievements associated with the Liao dynasty are considerable, and a number of various statuary and other artifacts exist in museums and other collections, major questions remain over the exact nature and extent of the influence of the Liao Khitan culture upon subsequent developments, such as the musical and theatrical arts.

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