Tang Dynasty Art Museum
Curved shaft plowing 曲辕犁 (qūyuánlí) increased production and freed people from the land. Coupled with the habit of burning old stubble to clear fields before planting, the curved plow allowed old organics to be turned into the fields.
Large plantations were established for mulberry trees 桑 (sāng) and tea bushes 茶 (chá) which also enhanced production and meant that people didn't have to roam the countryside to harvest the products and grow silk worms.
Zhuge Ying 诸葛颖 (Zhūgě Yǐng) wrote Sewing and Cultivation 种植法 (Zhòngzhífǎ) making a start on a scientific approach to farming.
Han E's 翰鄂 (Hàn È) book about the seasons for planting called The Demands of the Four Seasons 四時纂要 (Sìshí Zuǎnyāo) laying out the tasks that had to be performed throughout the year. Much of it was traditional knowledge, but it opened up consideration of organized farming and the possibility of change.
Hybrid horses 駃騠 (juétí) were bred for strength and durability. The deliberate breeding of livestock for certain characteristics requires extensive record keeping and the beginning of experimentation.
China Index >> Xi'an in Pictures >> Tang Museum
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update: March 2010
© Marilyn Shea, 2010