China's Southern Tang Dynasty, 937-976: 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

China's Southern Tang Dynasty, 937-976

1st Edition

By Johannes L. Kurz


144 pages | 1 B/W Illus.

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The Southern Tang was one of China’s minor dynasties and one of the great states in China in the tenth century. Although often regarded as one of several states preceding the much better known Song dynasty (960-1279), the Southern Tang dynasty was in fact the key state in this period, preserving cultural values and artefacts from the former great Tang dynasty (618-907) which were to form the basis of Song rule, and thereby presenting the Song with a direct link to the Tang and it traditions.

Drawing mainly on primary Chinese sources, this is the first book in English to provide a comprehensive overview of the Southern Tang, and full coverage of military, cultural and political history in the period. It focuses on a successful, albeit short-lived, attempt to set up an independent regional state in the modern provinces of Jiangxi and Jiangsu, and establishes the Southern Tang dynasty in its own right. It follows the rise of the Southern Tang state to become the predominant claimant of the Tang heritage and the expansionist policies of the second ruler culminating in the occupation and annexation of the two of the Southern Tang’s neighbours, Min (Fujian) and Chu (Hunan). Finally the narrative describes the decline of the dynasty under its last ruler, the famous poet Li Yu, and its ultimate surrender to the Song dynasty.

Table of Contents

1. The State of Wu 2. The Founding of the Southern Tang and the Reign of Li Bian 3. The Reign of Li Jing 4. The Reign of Li Yu and the Decline of the Southern Tang

About the Author

Johannes L. Kurz is Senior Lecturer in the History Department at Universiti Brunei Darussalam. He is the author of Das Kompilationsprojekt Song Taizongs (reg. 976-996) (2003).

About the Series

Asian States and Empires

The importance of Asia will continue to grow in the twenty-first century, but remarkably little is available in English on the history of the polities that constitute this critical area.  Most current work on Asia is hindered by the extremely limited state of knowledge of the Asian past in general, and the history of Asian states and empires in particular.  Asian States and Empires is a book series that will provide detailed accounts of the history of states and empires across Asia from earliest times until the present.  It aims to explain and describe the formation, maintenance and collapse of Asian states and empires, and the means by which this was accomplished, making available the history of more than half the world’s population at a level of detail comparable to the history of Western polities.  In so doing, it will demonstrate that Asian peoples and civilizations had their own histories apart from the West, and provide the basis for understanding contemporary Asia in terms of its actual histories, rather than broad generalizations informed by Western categories of knowledge.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General
HISTORY / Asia / China
HISTORY / Medieval
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies