The Tang Dynasty rules China between 618 and 907 A.D. This was a period of great progress and stability in China, and is considered by many historians to be China’s Golden Age. Woodblock printing was invented. Trade along the Silk Road reached its zenith. Buddhism arrived and grew in influence. Poetry reached its apex with 2,200 different authors writing some 50,000 poems, and those are just the ones that have survived. We know that the capital city of Chang’an was the largest city in the world at the time thanks to ancient census records meticulously taken by the Tang. The Tang dynasty eventually collapsed into an extended period of civil war known as the Ten Dynasty Period.
The Song Dynasty ruled China between 960 and 1279 A.D., right before the Mongol Warlord Kublai Khan took over China and established the Mongol Yuan Dynasty. They were responsible for several important political and technological developments. They were the first governments to issue paper money as a form of currency. They were also the first to establish true north on a magnetic compass, use moveable type in printing and utilize gunpowder. The Song also established the first permanent imperial navy as a way to prevent further civil wars.