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China was once the most scientifically advanced nation on Earth, up to around 1400AD when they entered an isolationist era.
Chances are, if it exists in the West, it came from the East. Think anything from noodles, calligraphy and ceramics to golf, ice-cream, opera, fireworks, architecture and philosophy. The Chinese were casting bronze around 5000 years ago, and the earliest chopsticks were not far behind. Chinese culture has made one of the greatest artistic contributions to humankind. Sadly, much of China's ancient art treasures have been destroyed in times of civil war or dispersed by invasion or natural calamity.
A common stereotype is that the Chinese traditionally lack scientific and technological ability, although, somehow, they stumbled upon paper making, printing, gunpowder, and the mariner's compass.
Modern Chinese, themselves, sometimes are surprised to realize that modern agriculture, shipping, astronomical observatories, decimal mathematics, paper money, umbrellas, wheelbarrows, multi-stage rockets, brandy and whiskey, the game of chess, and much more, all came from China.
The sciences of astronomy, physics, chemistry, meteorology, seismology, technology, engineering, and mathematics can trace their early origins to China.
From 600 AD until 1500 AD, China was the world's most technologically advanced society.
The Chinese were developed more than any other ancient civilazation. Scholars routinely discovered scientific principles, invented new technologies, and influenced the development of human civilizations around the world.
The Europeans sailed to China to bring back many of these treasured inventions. A few of these inventions are below.
[ Last edited by changabula at 2007-5-27 04:23 AM ]