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Tang culture spread widely in Asia, as the new maritime Silk Route brought traders to as far as Mesopotamia and Somalia.Dynastic rule ended in 1912 with the Xinhai Revolution, as a republic replaced the Qing dynasty.At its end, Wei was swiftly overthrown by the Jin dynasty.The Jin fell to civil war upon the ascension of a developmentally-disabled emperor; the Five Barbarians then invaded and ruled northern China as the Sixteen States.The succeeding Han dynasty saw some of the most advanced technology at that time, including papermaking and the compass, along with agricultural and medical improvements.The invention of gunpowder and printing in the Tang dynasty completed the Four Great Inventions.
In 907, the Tang disintegrated completely when the local military governors became ungovernable.
Despite the Han's initial decentralization and the official abandonment of the Qin philosophy of Legalism in favor of Confucianism, Qin's legalist institutions and policies continued to be employed by the Han government and its successors.
whose central figures were later immortalized in one of the Four Classics of Chinese literature.
China is a great power and a major regional power within Asia, and has been characterized as a potential superpower.
During the 1950s and 1960s, after the defeat of the Kuomintang in the Chinese Civil War, it was also referred to as "Communist China" or "Red China", to be differentiated from "Nationalist China" or "Free China"., though centralized authority was slowly eroded by feudal warlords.