Chinese Inventions and Discoveries History Alive Chapter 18 The Chinese invented many things, especially in the years between 200 and 1400 C.E. The Chinese excelled in engineering, mathematics, science and medicine often discovering and inventing things far beyond Europe and other parts of the world. These advances were in exploration and travel, industry, military technology, everyday objects, and disease prevention. These discoveries will help people across the world as cultural diffusion and trade bring them out of China. Several Chinese inventions made exploration and travel safer and faster. The Chinese were the first to invent the compass, around 3 B.C.E. Allowed for long sea voyagers, because you knew what direction you were going in. Made water tight ship compartments. Other innovations benefited traders or improved travel on rivers, lakes, canals, and bridges inside of China. Invented the paddle wheel boat, which was much faster than paddling a boat. Created canal locks to raise and lower water levels. Invented segmental arch bridge which was stronger and cheaper to build. Europe did not learn how to make paper until approximately 1100 C.E., the Chinese invented paper in 2 C.E. In the 7th century C.E. the Chinese started doing woodblock printing. This is when you carve wood to have raised text, images, or characters dip them in ink and press it to a piece of paper. This was improved in 1100 C.E. by creating movable type. Before whole words were carved into wood as opposed to letters. Europe develops this in the 1400s C.E. it is the standard for printing for nearly 600 years. The Chinese invented Porcelain, which is a fine pottery that Europe did not learn how to make until the 1800s. Fine dinnerware is still known as “china” today. The Chinese also were the first to start creating steel, there discoveries made the mass production of steel much easier and cheaper. Developed the crossbow. In 850 C.E., the Chinese invented gunpowder, which would revolutionize warfare. First weapon was created in the 10th century, the flamethrower. Between the 11th and 14th centuries, exploding shells, grenades, rifles, and cannons. Also developed rocket launchers. These would fire several arrows at a time, often exploding on impact with the enemy. Playing cards Invented around the 9th century. Made of thick paper; famous artists would draw designs for the back. Paper money A combination of a lack of copper and the need for an easier way to carry money created paper money in the late 8th or early 9th centuries C.E. Worthless, unless backed by something worth money. Mechanical clock First mechanical clock was a wheel that would rotate fully in 24 hours. Was powered by tripping water. Every 15 minutes drums would beat, and every hour a bell would chime. Before 1 C.E. the Chinese were thinking of ways to fight infectious diseases. If someone died of an infectious disease, the Chinese burned a chemical that gave off a poisonous smoke. They believed this would destroy what was causing the disease. This smoke was a disinfectant. During the Song dynasty, the Chinese began steaming the clothes of sick people. Hot temperatures kill many germs. Around the 10th Century C.E., the Chinese started inoculating people against smallpox. This is when you expose a person to a small amount of the disease to build up their immune system to it. This is the same idea as vaccines or flu shots today. Work Cited http://farm1.static.flickr.com/67/202860283_1ee6c2b4a2.jpg http://web.fccj.org/~achiang/calligraphy/zhi.jpg http://knows.jongo.com/UserFiles/Image/technologyjasmine/bow1.jpg http://www.radio86.co.uk/system/files/images/kiinalainenvarjo.img_assist_custom.main+image.jpg http://z.about.com/d/inventors/1/G/7/y/compass.jpg http://www.bnb.be/NR/rdonlyres/832ED7DB-BE45-4392-9ACD-1677CD384391/0/china2.jpg http://images.replacements.com/images/images5/china/W/wedgwood_chinese_tigers_green_5pc_place_set_ csft_dp_sp_bb_P0000113388S0052T2.jpg http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1092/721496817_2e68524570.jpg http://www.engr.sjsu.edu/pabacker/history/images/water.gif http://zedomax.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/paddleboatbmp.jpg http://z.about.com/d/space/1/0/V/0/1/fire_arrow.gif http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v259/Sonicscape/Thundercrashbombs.jpg http://gamesmuseum.uwaterloo.ca/Archives/Wilkinson/fig14.jpg http://www.scalife.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/08/chinese_flying_money.jpg http://images.inmagine.com/img/healthhead/unm104/u10954725.jpg http://journals.prous.com/journals/dnp/20031610/html/dn160698/images/Borchardt_f1.jpg History Alive! Medieval World and Beyond.