Major events, sports highlights and Nobel Prizes of 1912 - History

Major events, sports highlights and Nobel Prizes of 1912 - History

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News of 1912

  • Sports: Stockholm Olympic Games

    Sport: 100m Winner: Ralph Cook Craig Country: USA
    Sport: 200m Winner: Ralph Cook Craig Country: USA
    Sport: 400m Winner: Charles Reidpath Country: USA
    Sport: 800m Winner: James Edwin Meredith Country: USA
    Sport: 1500m Winner: Arnold Jackson Country: GBR
    Sport: 5000m Winner: Johannes Kolehmainen Country: FIN
    Sport: 10,000m Winner: Johannes Kolemainen Country: FIN
    Sport: Marathon Winner: Kenneth McArthur Country: SAF
    Sport: 110m Hurdles Winner: Frederick Kelly Country: USA
    Sport: 4x100m Relay Winner: GBR
    Sport: 4x400m Relay Winner: USA
    Sport: High Jump Winner: Alma Richards Country: USA
    Sport: Pole Vault Winner: Harry Babcock Country: USA
    Sport: Long Jump Winner: Albert Gutterson Country: USA
    Sport: Triple Jump Winner: Gustaf Lindblom Country: SWE
    Sport: Shotput Winner: Patrick McDonald Country: USA
    Sport: Discus Winner: Armas Taipale Country: FIN
    Sport: Hammer Winner: Matthew McGrath Country: USA
    Sport: Javelin Winner: Eric Lemming Country: SWE
    Sport: Decathlon Winner: James Thorpe Country: USA
    Sport: 3000m Team Winner: USA
    Sport: Cross Country Individual Winner: Johannes Kolemainen Country: FIN
    Sport: Cross Country Team Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Pentathlon Winner: James Thorpe Country: USA
    Sport: Standing Long Jump Winner: Konstantin Tsiklitiras Country: GRE
    Sport: Standing High Jump Winner: Platt Adams Country: USA
    Sport: Shotput, Both Hands Winner: Ralph Rose Country: USA
    Sport: Discus Throw, Both Hands Winner: Armas Taipale Country: FIN
    Sport: Javelin, Both Hands Winner: Julius Saaristo Country: FIN
    Sport: Tug-of War Winner: Sweden
    Sport: 10km Walk Winner: George Goulding Country: CAN
    Sport: 100m Freestyle Winner: Duke Paoa Kahanamoku Country: USA
    Sport: 400m Freestyle Winner: George Ritchie Hodgson Country: CAN
    Sport: 1500m Freestyle Winner: George Ritchie Hodgson Country: CAN
    Sport: 100m Backstroke Winner: Harry Hebner Country: USA
    Sport: 200m Breaststroke Winner: Walter Bathe Country: GER
    Sport: 400m Breaststroke Winner: Walter Bathe Country: GER
    Sport: 4x22m Relay Winner: AUS/NZ
    Sport: Springboard Diving Winner: Paul Gunther Country: GER
    Sport: High Diving Winner: Erik Adlerz Country: SWE
    Sport: Plain High Diving Winner: Erik Adlerz Country: SWE
    Sport: Water Polo Winner: Great Britain
    Sport: 100m Freestyle Winner: Fanny Durack Country: AUS
    Sport: 4x100m Relay Winner: GBR
    Sport: Platform Diving Winner: Greta Johansson Country: SWE
    Sport: Featherweight(Greco Roman Wrestling) Winner: Kaarlo Koskelo Country: FIN
    Sport: Lightweight (Greco Roman Wrestling) Winner: Eemil WŠre Country: FIN
    Sport: Middleweight( Greco Roman Wrestling) Winner: Claes Johanson Country: SWE
    Sport: Heavyweight(Greco Roman Wresting) Winner: Yrjš Saarela Country: FIN
    Sport: Foil Individual Winner: Nedo Nadi Country: ITA
    Sport: EpŽe Individual Winner: Paul Anspach Country: BEL
    Sport: EpŽe Team Winner: Belgium
    Sport: Sabre Individual Winner: Dr. Jenš Fuchs Country: HUN
    Sport: Sabre Team Winner: Hungary
    Sport: Modern Pentathlon Winner: Gšsta Lilliehššk
    Sport: Single Sculls Winner: William Kinnear Country: GBR
    Sport: Coxed Fours Winner: Germany
    Sport: Eights Winner: Great Britain
    Sport: Coxed Fours, Inriggers Winner: Denmark
    Sport: Yachting 6m Class Winner: France
    Sport: 8m Class Winner: Norway
    Sport: 10m Class Winner: Sweden
    Sport: 12m Class Winner: Norway
    Sport: Cycling Individual Road Race Winner: Rudolph Lewis Country: SAF
    Sport: Team Time Trial Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Equestrian Three Day Event, Individual Winner: Axel Nordlander Country: SWE
    Sport: Three Day Event, Team Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Dressage Individual Winner: Carl Bonde Country: SWE
    Sport: Grand Prix Jumping Individual Winner: Jean Cariou Country: FRA
    Sport: Grand Prix Jumping Team Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Free Rifle 300m 3 positions Winner: Paul Colas Country: FRA
    Sport: Free Rifle Team Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Small-Bore Rifle, Prone Winner: Frederick Hird Country: USA
    Sport: Small-Bore Rifle, Individual disappearing target Winner: Wilhel Carlberg Country: SWE
    Sport: Miniature Rifle Team 25m Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Miniature Rifle Team 50m Winner: Great Britain
    Sport: Rapid Fire Pistol Winner: Alfred Lane Country: USA
    Sport: Free Pistol 50m Winner: Alfred Lane Country: USA
    Sport: Miltiary Revolver Team 30m Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Clay Pigeon Team Winner: USA
    Sport: Military Rifle Individual 3 Positions Winner: S‡ndor Prokopp Country: HUN
    Sport: Military Rifle Individual Any Position Winner: Paul Colas Country: FRA
    Sport: Military Rifle Team Winner: USA
    Sport: Running Deer Shooting (SingleShot) Individual Winner: Alferd Swahn Country: SWE
    Sport: Running Deer Shooting (Single Shot) Team Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Running Deer Shooting (Double Shot) Individual Winner: Ake Lundeberg Country: SWE
    Sport: Military Revolver Team 50m Winner: USA
    Sport: Clay Pigeon Individual Winner: James Graham Country: USA
    Sport: Men Gymnastics Individual All around Competition Winner: Alberto Braglia Country: ITA
    Sport: Team All-around Competition Winner: Italy
    Sport: Team Swedish System Gymnastics Winner: Sweden
    Sport: Free System Team Winner: Norway
    Sport: Football Winner: Great Britain
    Sport: Tennis MenÕs singles Winner: Charles Winslow Country: SAF
    Sport: MenÕs singles (indoors) Winner: AndrŽ Gobert Country: FRA
    Sport: Men doubles Winner: SAF
    Sport: Men doubles (indoor) Winner: FRA
    Sport: Women singles Winner: Marguerite Broquedis Country: FRA
    Sport: Women singles (indoors) Winner: Edith Hannam Country: GBR
    Sport: Mixed Doubles Winner: GER
    Sport: Mixed Doubles (indoors) Winner: GBR

    Nobel Prizes

    The prize was divided equally between: GRIGNARD, VICTOR, France, Nancy University, b. 1871, d. 1935: "for the discovery of the so-called Grignard reagent, which in recent years has greatly advanced the progress of organic chemistry"; and SABATIER, PAUL, France, Toulouse University, b. 1854, d. 1941: "for his method of hydrogenating organic compounds in the presence of finely disintegrated metals whereby the progress of organic chemistry has been greatly advanced in recent years"

    HAUPTMANN, GERHART JOHANN ROBERT, Germany, b. 1862, d. 1946: "primarily in recognition of his fruitful, varied and outstanding production in the realm of dramatic art"

    ROOT, ELIHU, USA, b. 1845, d. 1937: Former Secretary of State. Initiator of several arbitration agreements.

    Physiology or Medicine
    CARREL, ALEXIS, France, Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, New York, NY, b. 1873, d. 1944: "in recognition of his work on vascular suture and the transplantation of blood vessels and organs"

    DALƒN, NILS GUSTAF, Sweden, Swedish Gas-Accumulator Co., Lidingš-Stockholm, b. 1869, d. 1937: "for his invention of automatic regulators for use in conjunction with gas accumulators for illuminating lighthouses and buoys"

  • After establishing himself as a renowned escapologist, Harry Houdini spent the latter half of his career debunking the supernatural and exposing fake psychics. Conan Doyle, on the other hand, was a complete believer in anything remotely connected with the paranormal. Particularly, he was a massive fan of mediums after one pretended to talk to his son who&rsquod died in World War I. It&rsquos hard to think these men would ever become friends, but they were friends for years, mostly because Houdini hid his real feelings about spiritualists.

    Houdini never set out to become the mortal enemy of psychics. At first, he had a genuine interest in the subject, particularly after his mother&rsquos death. However, being a trained magician, he could easily spot the techniques that psychics used. His real feelings on the subject finally became evident to Doyle during a seance conducted by Doyle&rsquos wife, in which she used automatic writing to supposedly communicate with Houdini&rsquos mother. Even for a psychic reading, it went very badly: Lady Doyle drew a cross even though Houdini&rsquos mother was the Jewish wife of a rabbi. She also filled pages of fluent English even though Cecelia Weiss barely spoke the language.

    After that, Houdini declared war on spiritualists. With the help of Scientific American, he also set up a cash prize for anyone who demonstrated any kind of supernatural ability. That prize was never collected, and Houdini&rsquos friendship with Doyle never recovered.

    Remembering the 1912 Presidential Election

    At first, Theodore Roosevelt, who was commander-in-chief from 1901 to 1909, seemed an unlikely candidate for the 1912 presidential election. After backing his close friend William Howard Taft to serve as his successor, he disappeared on an extended hunting trip to Africa. But Roosevelt became increasingly disillusioned with Taft and eventually decided to mount a challenge for the next Republican nomination. “My hat is in the ring,” Roosevelt declared in February 1912. “The fight is on and I am stripped to the buff.”

    With few exceptions, candidates in prior elections had largely refrained from overt campaigning. Roosevelt changed this by giving speeches around the country, especially in the dozen states with direct primaries. He called Taft a �thead” with “the brains of a guinea pig,” and Taft responded in kind, saying Roosevelt’s followers were “radicals” and “neurotics.” “Roosevelt felt it was hard to sit on the sidelines when this guy was messing up,” said Alan Lessoff, a history professor at Illinois State University who specializes in the Progressive Era. 𠇊nd Taft was no slouch, so he resented it terribly.”

    Though Roosevelt won most of the primaries, he came up short of delegates at the tumultuous Republican National Convention in Chicago, prompting him and his supporters to storm out. They then reconvened across town and formed the Progressive Party, nicknamed the Bull Moose Party because Roosevelt said he felt as fit as a bull moose.

    Cover of Teddy Roosevelt’s 1912 campaign music. (Buyenlarge/Getty Images)

    Meanwhile, at the Democratic National Convention in Baltimore, New Jersey Governor Woodrow Wilson managed to outlast Speaker of the House Champ Clark, winning the nomination on the 46th ballot. “He was a fresh face, an articulate guy, mildly progressive, southern roots, northern background,” Lewis L. Gould, author of 𠇏our Hats in the Ring: The 1912 Election and the Birth of Modern American Politics,” said of Wilson. Rounding out the field was Eugene Debs, who was running for the third straight time on the Socialist Party ticket.

    In the run-up to the November election, Taft essentially gave up as a candidate, complaining in a letter that “there are so many people in the country who don’t like me.” To make matters worse, Vice President James S. Sherman died in office that October, temporarily leaving him without a running mate.

    All three other candidates hit the stump aggressively, particularly Roosevelt, who traveled some 10,000 miles and visited 34 states, where he spoke out in favor of Progressive Era causes such as minimum wage laws, conservation, women’s suffrage, safer workplaces, the eight-hour workday and regulating but not destroying monopolies. At one point, he was shot before an appearance in Milwaukee, yet he still managed to speak for about 90 minutes with a bullet lodged in his chest.

    In the end, Roosevelt ran one of the most successful third-party candidacies in history. But with the Republican Party split, Wilson—who had based his campaign on completely smashing monopolies and tariff reduction�me the first Democrat since Grover Cleveland to take the White House. He prevailed with 42 percent of the popular vote (435 electoral votes), compared to 27 percent (88 electoral votes) for Roosevelt and 23 percent (eight electoral votes) for Taft. Debs didn’t get any electoral votes, but he garnered 6 percent of the popular vote—the most ever for a Socialist presidential candidate.

    “I think it’s the most distinguished field that has ever run for president in modern times,” said Gould, who added that the consequences of the election were profound. The Republican Party, for instance, would never be the same. 𠇎ver since the 1912 campaign, the conservatives in the Republican Party have had the upper hand,” Lessoff said. 𠇋ut what it means to be a conservative has changed quite a bit. You can’t draw a straight line.”

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    The Stockholm Games were a model of efficiency. The Swedish hosts introduced the first Olympic use of automatic timing devices for the track events, the photo finish and a public address system.

    Last Man Standing

    If there was an unofficial theme of the 1912 Games, it was endurance. The course for the cycling road race was 320km (199 miles), the longest race of any kind in Olympic history. In Greco-Roman wrestling, the middleweight semi-final match between Russian Martin Klein and Finland’s Alfred Asikainen lasted 11 hours.

    Debuts and Firsts

    For the first time, competitors in the Games came from all five continents. It was also the first time Japan participated. The modern pentathlon, women’s swimming and women’s diving all made their Olympic debuts.

    Mighty Jim

    Jim Thorpe, an Indigenous man from Oklahoma, won the pentathlon and decathlon by huge margins, and was described by King Gustav V of Sweden as "the greatest athlete in the world". He was later disqualified when it was discovered that he had accepted a modest sum to play baseball before the Games. In 1982, the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee decided to reinstate Jim Thorpe and to give back to his daughter the medals that were rightfully his. His feat was immortalised in the film "The Bronze Man" by Michael Curtiz, with Burt Lancaster in the role of Thorpe.

    Athletes: 2,407 (48 women, 2,359 men)

    Events: 102

    Volunteers: N/A

    The First Art and Literature Competition

    Under the nom de plume of Georges Hohrod and M. Eschbach, Baron de Coubertin was awarded first place for his "Ode to sport" which "praises sport in both a literary and sporting way". (Illustration: "Les sports d'hiver" of Carlo Pelligrini, winner of the painting competition of the Concours d’Art.)

    Long Live the Games

    With the close of the 1912 Olympics, all eyes turned towards the city of Berlin where the next edition of the Games was scheduled to take place. Although World War I made it impossible for plans to proceed, the Games proved their resilience. The 1916 celebration remained in Olympic history as the Games of the VI Olympiad, and in 1920, the Olympics were once again held, with the Belgian city of Antwerp acting as Olympic host.


    Stockholm 1912, Games of the V Olympiad: the Swedish team of women gymnasts parades in the stadium during the Opening Ceremony.

    Official Opening of the Games by:

    His Majesty The King Gustav V

    Lighting the Olympic Flame by:

    A symbolic fire at an Olympic Summer Games was first lit in 1928 in Amsterdam.

    Olympic Oath by:

    The athletes’ oath was first sworn at the 1920 Olympic Games in Antwerp.

    Officials' Oath by:

    The officials' oath at an Olympic Summer Games was first sworn in 1972 in Munich.


    The long and colourful traditions of dressage go as far back as Ancient Greece. Dressage, the highest expression of horse training, is considered the art of equestrian sport and is used as the groundwork for all other disciplines.

    Two thousand years ago, the ancient Greeks recognised that if rider and horse were to survive in battle, complete cooperation was necessary between the pair, and developed dressage as a method to train the horses for war. A horse’s ability to move quickly from side to side, burst into a gallop or change direction immediately were all considered vital skills.

    With the disintegration of Ancient Greece, the art of riding slowly fell into oblivion until its revival during the Renaissance period. In the 18th century, classical dressage reached its peak with the creation of the world-famous Spanish Riding School in 1729 in Vienna that laid the basis of the modern discipline. More recently, and with unprecedented success, the freestyle to music test was introduced and has since become an integral part of dressage, making its Olympic debut in Atlanta 1996. Freestyle is the pinnacle of dressage execution, and when it works, the result is magic.

    Equestrian sports featured on the Olympic programme of the Paris Games in 1900, with jumping events, and were then withdrawn until the 1912 Games in Stockholm. Since then, this sport has been on the Olympic programme with remarkable regularity.

    Until 1948, only men competed in the events, as the riders had to be officers. This restriction was lifted in 1951, and since the Helsinki Games in 1952, women have competed with men in the mixed events. They competed first in dressage, then gradually in the other equestrian events.


    Eventing is the most complete combined competition discipline and demands of the competitor and horse considerable experience in all branches of equitation. It covers every aspect of horsemanship: the harmony between horse and rider that characterise dressage the contact with nature, stamina and extensive experience essential for the cross-country the precision, agility and technique involved in jumping.

    Developed to test and prepare cavalry horses, eventing has a long and colourful history. Initially, the purpose was to create a competition in which officers and horses could be tested for any challenges that could occur on or off duty. It also provided a basis to compare training standards between the cavalries of different countries.

    Although women had been allowed to ride in equestrian events since 1952, it wasn't until Helena du Pont competed for the United States at Tokyo 1964 that eventing saw its first woman representing her country.

    Since Atlanta 1996, extensive studies and research have taken place examining the effects of heat and humidity on horses taking part in equestrian events. The wealth of information collected also serves as a great resource for amateur equestrians faced with adverse climatic conditions around the world.

    Equestrian sports featured on the Olympic programme of Paris 1900 with jumping events, and were then withdrawn until the 1912 Games in Stockholm. Since then, this sport has been on the Olympic programme with remarkable regularity.

    Until 1948, only men competed in the events, as the riders had to be officers. This restriction was lifted in 1951, and since the Helsinki Games in 1952, women have competed with men in the mixed events. They competed first in dressage, then gradually in the other equestrian events.

    From the three disciplines that make up equestrian, eventing is the most demanding. Indeed, it combines not only jumping and dressage, but also a long cross-country course, on mixed terrain with sometimes imposing natural or artificial obstacles.


    Jumping developed after fences were put up in the English countryside, leading fox hunters to require horses that could jump.

    The discipline, as we know it today, developed as a result of competition among fox hunters, following the introduction of the Enclosures Acts that came into force in England in the 18th century. Previously, hunters would gallop across open fields in their pursuit of foxes. But when fences were erected following the Acts, a new and much desired trait took the fore: the jumping horse.

    Many regard Italian Federico Caprilli as the “father of modern riding”, a status he earned by revolutionising the jumping seat. Before him, riders would lean back and pull the reins when jumping a fence. However, this technique was awkward and uncomfortable for the horse. Caprilli’s solution was the more natural “forward seat” position. This technique is now universally used.

    The horse made its first appearance at the ancient Olympic Games in 680 BC when chariot racing was introduced—and was by far the most exciting and spectacular event on the programme. Many centuries later, when the modern Games began, a few unsuccessful attempts, namely 1896, 1900, 1904 and 1908, preceded the success of equestrian in the 1912 Olympic programme. Over the next few decades, jumping was dominated by the military, but with the mechanisation of the army over the years, civilians became more and more prevalent. The decline of the military teams also paved the way for women, who made their first Olympic appearance in jumping at the 1956 Games in Stockholm, and are today as often, if not more, on the top spot of the podium.


    Home of the Terrapins, the University of Maryland has one of the nation’s most recognizable and successful athletics programs. More than 550 student-athletes compete each year in 20 intercollegiate sports—12 for women and eight for men. Since 2005 alone, Maryland has won 19 national championships, including NCAA titles in women’s basketball, men’s soccer, men's lacrosse, women’s lacrosse, and field hockey. Since joining the Big Ten Conference in 2014, UMD has won a combined 32 regular season and tournament championships. Fear the Turtle!

    Our Commitment to Student-Athletes

    At the University of Maryland, our commitment to the safety and well-being of our students is paramount and resolute. For our student-athletes, that means both on and off the field.
    The University of Maryland is committed to accountability, transparency, and fairness and is working to ensure our program upholds the values of our University.
    Learn more about our commitment.

    Pierre de Coubertin Proposes New Olympic Games

    Approximately 1500 years later, a young Frenchmen named Pierre de Coubertin began their revival. Coubertin is now known as le Rénovateur. Coubertin was a French aristocrat born on January 1, 1863. He was only seven years old when France was overrun by the Germans during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870. Some believe that Coubertin attributed the defeat of France not to its military skills but rather to the French soldiers' lack of vigor.* After examining the education of the German, British, and American children, Coubertin decided that it was exercise, more specifically sports, that made a well-rounded and vigorous person.

    Coubertin's attempt to get France interested in sports was not met with enthusiasm. Still, Coubertin persisted. In 1890, he organized and founded a sports organization, Union des Sociétés Francaises de Sports Athlétiques (USFSA). Two years later, Coubertin first pitched his idea to revive the Olympic Games. At a meeting of the Union des Sports Athlétiques in Paris on November 25, 1892, Coubertin stated,

    His speech did not inspire action.

    Emperor Jiaqing (ruled 1796–1820) - Qing Decline Began

    During the 1800s, the dynasty seemed somewhat successful because the population kept growing and the territory stayed intact, but the empire modernized too slowly, and the ruling court dealt poorly with a rapidly changing world and numerous uprisings.

    Wangfujing Church in Beijing

    A Great Missionary Age (c. 1800–1912)

    Protestant evangelical Christianity was introduced by Western missionaries, and tens of thousands of Chinese converted.

    The missionaries set up numerous schools and hospitals, educating tens of thousands of students and educating doctors and nurses in Western medicine. They also set up colleges and universities. See more on Christianity in China.

    The Columbia University Campus

    In 1897, the university moved from Forty-ninth Street and Madison Avenue, where it had stood for forty years, to its present location on Morningside Heights at 116th Street and Broadway. Seth Low, the president of the University at the time of the move, sought to create an academic village in a more spacious setting. Charles Follen McKim of the architectural firm of McKim, Mead, and White modeled the new campus after the Athenian agora. The Columbia campus comprises the largest single collection of McKim, Mead & White buildings in existence.

    The architectural centerpiece of the campus is Low Memorial Library, named in honor of Seth Low's father. Built in the Roman classical style, it appears in the New York City Register of Historic Places. The building today houses the University's central administration offices and the visitors center.

    A broad flight of steps descends from Low Library to an expansive plaza, a popular place for students to gather, and from there to College Walk, a promenade that bisects the central campus. Beyond College Walk is the South Campus, where Butler Library, the university's main library, stands. South Campus is also the site of many of Columbia College's facilities, including student residences, Alfred Lerner Hall (the student center), and the College's administrative offices and classroom buildings, along with the Graduate School of Journalism.

    To the north of Low Library stands Pupin Hall, which in 1966 was designated a national historic landmark in recognition of the atomic research undertaken there by Columbia's scientists beginning in 1925. To the east is St. Paul's Chapel, which is listed with the New York City Register of Historic Places.

    Many newer buildings surround the original campus. Among the most impressive are the Sherman Fairchild Center for the Life Sciences and the Morris A. Schapiro Center for Engineering and Physical Science Research. Two miles to the north of Morningside Heights is the 20-acre campus of the Columbia University Medical Center in Manhattan's Washington Heights, overlooking the Hudson River. Among the most prominent buildings on the site are the 20-story Julius and Armand Hammer Health Sciences Center, the William Black Medical Research Building, and the 17-story tower of the College of Physicians and Surgeons. In 1989, The Presbyterian Hospital opened the Milstein Hospital Building, a 745-bed facility that incorporates the very latest advances in medical technology and patient care.

    To the west is the New York State Psychiatric Institute east of Broadway is the Audubon Biomedical Science and Technology Park, which includes the Mary Woodard Lasker Biomedical Research Building, the Audubon Business Technology Center, Russ Berrie Medical Science Pavilion, and the Irving Cancer Research Center as well as other institutions of cutting-edge scientific and medical research.

    In addition to its New York City campuses, Columbia has two facilities outside of Manhattan. Nevis Laboratories, established in 1947, is Columbia's primary center for the study of high-energy experimental particle and nuclear physics. Located in Irvington, New York, Nevis is situated on a 60-acre estate originally owned by the son of Alexander Hamilton.

    The Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory was established in 1949 in Palisades, New York, and is a leading research institution focusing on global climate change, earthquakes, volcanoes, nonrenewable resources, and environmental hazards. It examines the planet from its core to its atmosphere, across every continent and every ocean.

    Major events, sports highlights and Nobel Prizes of 1912 - History

    Timeline of Chinese Dynasties and Other Key Events

    ca. 2100-1600 BCE Xia (Hsia) Dynasty
    ca. 1600-1050 BCE Shang Dynasty Capitals: near present-day Zhengzhou and Anyang
    ca. 1046-256 BCE Zhou (Chou) Dynasty Capitals: Hao (near present-day Xi'an) and Luoyang
    Western Zhou (ca. 1046-771 BCE)
    Eastern Zhou (ca. 771-256 BCE) Spring and Autumn Period
    (770-ca. 475 BCE)
    Confucius (ca. 551-479 BCE)
    Warring States Period
    (ca. 475-221 BCE)
    221-206 BCE Qin (Ch'in) Dynasty Capital: Chang'an, present-day Xi'an
    Qin Shihuangdi dies, 210 BCE
    206 BCE-220 CE Han Dynasty
    Western/Former Han (206 BCE-9 CE) Capital: Chang'an
    Confucianism officially established as basis for Chinese state by Han Wudi (r. 141-86 BCE)
    Eastern/Later Han (25-220 CE) Capital: Luoyang
    220-589 CE Six Dynasties Period Period of disunity and instability following the fall of the Han Buddhism introduced to China
    Three Kingdoms (220-265 CE) Cao Wei, Shu Han, Dong Wu
    Jin Dynasty (265-420 CE)
    Period of the Northern and Southern Dynasties (386-589 CE)
    581-618 CE Sui Dynasty Capital: Chang'an
    618-906 CE Tang (T'ang) Dynasty Capitals: Chang'an and Luoyang
    907-960 CE Five Dynasties Period
    960-1279 Song (Sung) Dynasty
    Northern Song (960-1127) Capital: Bianjing (present-day Kaifeng)
    Southern Song (1127-1279) Capital: Lin'an (present-day Hangzhou)
    1279-1368 Yuan Dynasty The reign of the Mongol empire Capital: Dadu (present-day Beijing)
    1368-1644 Ming Dynasty Re-establishment of rule by Han ruling house Capitals: Nanjing and Beijing
    1644-1912 Qing (Ch'ing) Dynasty Reign of the Manchus Capital: Beijing
    1912-1949 Republic Period Capitals: Beijing, Wuhan, and Nanjing
    1949-present People's Republic of China Capital: Beijing

    Annotated Chronological Outline of Chinese History

    One of the Three Dynasties, or San Dai (Xia, Shang, and Zhou), thought to mark the beginning of Chinese civilization: characterized by its writing system, practice of divination, walled cities, bronze technology, and use of horse-drawn chariots.

    Zhou (Chou) Dynasty: Western Zhou (ca. 1046-771 BCE), Eastern Zhou (771-256 BCE)

    A hierarchical political and social system with the Zhou royal house at its apex: power was bestowed upon aristocratic families as lords of their domains or principalities. Although often compared to European "feudalism," what actually gave the system cohesion was a hierarchical order of ancestral cults. The system eventually broke down into a competition for power between rival semi-autonomous states in what became known as the Spring and Autumn period (ca. 770-475 BCE) and the Warring States (ca. 475-221 BCE) period. It was during these tumultuous times that Confucius (551-479 BCE) lived.

    Created a unitary state by imposing a centralized administration and by standardizing the writing script, weights and measures. Known for its harsh methods of rule, including the suppression of dissenting thought.

    Han Dynasty: Western/Former Han (206 BCE-9 CE) and Eastern/Later Han (25-220 CE)

    Modified and consolidated the foundation of the imperial order. Confucianism was established as orthodoxy and open civil service examinations were introduced. Han power reached Korea and Vietnam. Records of the Historian, which became the model for subsequent official histories, was completed.

    "Period of Disunity" or Six Dynasties Period

    The empire was fragmented. The North was dominated by invaders from the borderland and the steppes. The South was ruled by successive "Chinese" dynasties. Buddhism spread.

    A time of cosmopolitanism and cultural flowering occurred. This period was the height of Buddhist influence in China until its repression around 845. Active territorial expansion until defeated by the Arabs at Talas in 751.

    Song (Sung) Dynasty: Northern Song (960-1127) and Southern Song (1127-1279)

    An era of significant economic and social changes: the monetization of the economy growth in commerce and maritime trade urban expansion and technological innovations. The examination system for bureaucratic recruitment of neo-Confucianism was to provide the intellectual underpinning for the political and social order of the late imperial period.

    Founded by the Mongols as part of their conquest of much of the world. Beijing was made the capital. Dramas, such as the famous Story of the Western Wing, flourished.

    The first Ming emperor, Hongwu, laid the basis of an authoritarian political culture. Despite early expansion, it was an inward-looking state with an emphasis on its agrarian base. Gradual burgeoning of the commercial sector important changes in the economy and social relations in the latter part of the dynasty also a vibrant literary scene as represented by publication of the novel Journey to the West.

    A Manchu dynasty. Continued the economic developments of the late Ming, leading to prosperity but also complacency and a dramatic increase in population. The acclaimed novel Dream of the Red Chamber was written in this period. Strains on the polity were intensified by a rapid incorporation of substantial new territories. Its authoritarian structure was subsequently unable to meet the military and cultural challenge of an expansive West.

    Weak central government following the collapse of the dynastic system in 1911-12 Western influence was shown by the promotion of "science" and "democracy" during the New Culture Movement. The attempt of the Nationalist government (est. 1928) to bring the entire country under its control was thwarted by both domestic revolts and the Japanese occupation (1937-45). The Nationalists fled to Taiwan after defeat by the Communists.

    People's Republic of China

    Communist government. The drive for remaking society ended in disasters such as the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution. Economic reform and political retrenchment since around 1978.

    This "dynasties song," sung to the tune of "Frère Jacques,"
    can help students remember the major Chinese dynasties in chronological order.

    Shang, Zhou, Qin, Han
    Shang, Zhou, Qin, Han

    Sui, Tang, Song
    Sui, Tang, Song

    Yuan, Ming, Qing, Republic
    Yuan, Ming, Qing, Republic

    Mao Zedong
    Mao Zedong

    — Courtesy of the teachers on the College Board AP-World History Listserv

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