The Song and Yuan Dynasties

  • J. A. G. Roberts
Part of the Palgrave Essential Histories book series (EH)


After the fall of the Tang in 907, China experienced another period of disunity. However, whereas after the Han it had taken over three centuries to reconstitute a centralized empire, on this occasion the period of division lasted only half a century. This has been taken as proof of the strength of the political institutions created by the Tang. Despite the frequent changes of regime the ruling elite remained the same and the personnel of the civil service which maintained the functions of government continued in office. Since that time the expectation that China should be a unitary state has been accepted as the norm and periods of disunity have been viewed as aberrations from that standard.


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© J. A. G. Roberts 1999

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  • J. A. G. Roberts

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