Talk:Government of the Han dynasty

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Featured article Government of the Han dynasty is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
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From my sandbox version, I have recently expanded this article and will submit it to a GA review shortly.--Pericles of AthensTalk 23:17, 20 March 2009 (UTC)

Your excellence Tian Kehan of the 22 century Empire of Eternal Glorious Internet Kingdom of Invincible Han , thanks for the honor of giving me the first ever chance of reviewing you excellent article Government of the Han Dynasty. WOW is all I can say. Arilang talk 08:33, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the title! It sounds authoritative. Lol. Yeah, the article is pretty damn sweet, huh? The main Han Dynasty is next: full steam ahead!--Pericles of AthensTalk 08:51, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

My humble thought is, while you are working on these Han Chinese articles, is it possible to add some elements of comparisons, such as the Baixing of Chinese Empires VS the citizen's life of Western empires? What I am saying is, for thousands of years, Confucius teachings do not advocate "individual's right" and "independent expression of thoughts", which have become the norm of the western society. Many Han Chinese scholars have the notion that Confuciunism is the cause of the backwardness of modern Han Chinese society. Arilang talk 09:35, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Sure, that sounds like a role for Society and culture of the Han Dynasty, or perhaps a new article altogether. In any case, we should discuss this further at one of our private talk pages (since article talk pages deal strictly with the article).--Pericles of AthensTalk 10:02, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

石: "Shi" versus "Dan"[edit]

I don't mind noting that "dan" is an alternate pronunciation, but every scholarly source I have cited on the matter pronounces it as Pinyin "shi" (or Wade-Giles "shih"). This is supported by Wiktionary. To be fair, I did add "dan" in the "Salaries" section at the beginning of the article. However, since I use "shi" throughout this article and in others dealing with the Han (including the main article Han Dynasty), I would ask that you please acknowledge shi as the standard.--Pericles of AthensTalk 00:15, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

This character is read as dàn when referring to a unit of measure. In all other cases, it is read as shí. Here are some of the dictionaries that verify my assertion:
  • "石". Guoyu Cidian On-line Mandarin Dictionary (國語辭典) (in Mandarin). Retrieved 2009-04-22. 
  • Hanyu Da Cidian 3.0 (in Mandarin). Hong Kong: Commercial Press. 2007. ISBN 9789620702778. 
  • Wu, Jingrong (ed.) (1985). The Pinyin CHINESE-ENGLISH DICTIONARY (in Mandarin/English). Beijing, Hong Kong: The Commercial Press. ISBN 0471867969. 
  • "石". Dr. eye (in Mandarin/English). Retrieved 2009-04-22. 
In addition, the Chinese Wikipedia article for gives the reading dàn. As for Wiktionary, it is still a work in progress. However, as luck would have it, I have been contributing Chinese articles to Wiktionary for several years now, and can fix the article for for you. It's not that the article is wrong per se, just incomplete. Thanks. -- A-cai (talk) 00:43, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
Ok, take a look at the Wiktionary entry now. I don't fault your scholarly sources, only a person with a high degree of fluency in Mandarin would be aware of the distinction. It is also important to note that the value of the dàn changed from dynasty to dynasty. For example, during the Eastern Han Dynasty, one dàn was equal to 26400g as a unit of mass (see: zh:度量衡). -- A-cai (talk) 00:54, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
Nice work getting all of these sources together so quickly! You are clearly more knowledgeable about this than I am. I'm only a 3rd-year Mandarin speaker, so I would trust your judgment, along with that of several of the sources you shared here. Do you know how this character came to have two pronunciations? And if dan is truly preferred when referring to it as a unit of measurement, why do both Bielenstein and Crespigny refer to it as shi when speaking of it as a unit of measurement? Seems very odd to me.--Pericles of AthensTalk 01:18, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
There are a number of reasons why a Chinese character may have multiple pronunciations. Some of it has to do with the nonlinear development of Mandarin through the centuries. Attempts have been made to standardize Mandarin in the 20th century. However, non-standard varieties of Mandarin and competing standards still exist. Luckily, characters with multiple pronunciations in Mandarin comprise a small percentage of all Chinese characters. In some cases, a variant pronunciation is only used when referring to a specific (and sometimes obscure) technical item. That is the most likely reason that Bielenstein and Crespigny were unaware that 石 is only pronounced as dàn when referring to a unit of measure. Another example is 僕射. While you might be led to believe that this word should be rendered as púshè, in fact it should be read as púyè. This is the only time that you would read 射 as . Even native Mandarin speakers are likely to mispronounce this one, as only a native speaker who is well versed in Chinese history would be likely to be aware of this fact. -- A-cai (talk) 11:06, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
I found '600 shi salary' not acceptable to me. I did hear some Chinese said some 'shi' of rice, but those people don't use the '石‘ unit in their daily life. However, the daily users of the '石‘ unit still exist and pronounce it as 'dan' only. This makes the distinction from 僕射, which had been deprecated in use for hundreds of years. The 'shi' blunder has to be fixed, including wikitionary. I also add one more reference here.
  • "石". Xinhua Zidian On-line Mandarin Dictionary (在线新华字典) (in Mandarin). Retrieved 2009-11-20. 
石 is pronounced as dàn when used as a measurement of weight, but in Han salaries it is used as a measurement of volume where the pronunciation is shí. Reference: Paul W. Kroll: A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese, p. 413 [1]. Fornadan (t) 08:53, 22 August 2015 (UTC)

Thank you Baffle Gab![edit]


A big thanks to User:Baffle gab1978 for copyediting this article. You did a thorough, heck of a job. A round of applause. Cheers, buddy.--Pericles of AthensTalk 04:42, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Woohoo! This article just became featured! Thanks to you. Cheers.--Pericles of AthensTalk 04:26, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Hi Pericles, Well Done, Nice article! I notice that you've only used traditional characters - is there a reason for that? I don't mind adding simplified to fit with WP:MOS-ZH. Best, ► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 06:33, 12 March 2011 (UTC)

Clarifying Titles[edit]

As excellent as this article is, it is a little clunky about the way it introduces the titles of governmental positions. Maybe it's just because there are so many different offices described in the article, but all the "(also known as ...)" breaks up the consistency quite a bit. I know User:PericlesofAthens is using mostly de Crespigny as source for English renderings, but I wonder what the point is of including the old Bielenstein renderings instead of more recent alternative translations, and really what the point is of all the "also known as" at all. It's confusing to a non-specialist and haphazard to a specialist.

This article is probably the single article that would benefit most from some streamlining of Chinese title translation, and it was partially in the interest of improving the article past its already excellent state that I set up a reference and discussion page about the topic at Wikipedia:WikiProject_Chinese_history/Translation_of_Han_Dynasty_titles. Hopefully we can get some discussion going there and see if there is some way we can make translating Han Dynasty titles work more smoothly. Snuge purveyor (talk) 20:55, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

What is a hamlet?[edit]

The article says a district is made up of hamlets, but it's not clear what the Chinese word for hamlet is. Also, the link for hamlet does not discuss Chinese hamlets. --BenjaminBarrett12 (talk) 07:13, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

I found a little bit of information at Society_and_culture_of_the_Han_Dynasty#Urban_and_rural_life, where it says: An average hamlet contained about a hundred families and usually was enclosed by a wall with two gates. At the center of social life in the hamlet was the religious altar (built in honor of a local deity) where festivities could be staged. --BenjaminBarrett12 (talk) 08:07, 4 December 2012 (UTC)