Ming Dynasty Culture

The Ming Dynasty was the dynasty that ruled China from 1368-1644. The Ming Dynasty, also known as The Great Ming Empire, was established by King Zhu Yuanzhang. During the Ming Dynasty, China became a prosperous and influential empire, which led China to become a major cultural power in Asia. The cultural vibrancy of China was seen in many aspects of the Ming Dynasty.

During the Ming Dynasty, major developments were established in the fields of literature, art, and philosophy. Chinese art during Ming Dynasty was inherited from the Yuan Dynasty. Art and handicrafts during that era became more famous. Jingdezhen was known as the famous pottery center. Silk weaving, printing, embroidery, and cotton weaving were developed during the Ming Dynasty. Personal freedom was given to the artisans. Manufactured products such as porcelain and silk were in high demand.

Literature prospered during this era; some of the classical novels like Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Water Margin, and Journey to the West were written, which became one of the major contributions in the field of literature. The Yongle Encyclopedia that is considered as a monumental piece of cultural heritage was completed during Ming Chengzu’s rule. This monumental volume contains all the subjects from medicine to astronomy and yin-yang philosophy. Vernacular Chinese language was used to write the novels. Painting, music, drama, and poetry also flourished during this era.

During Ming Dynasty, there were lots of cultural and economic exchanges with other nations of Asia. Before the Ming Dynasty, China was divided into four classes: merchants, farmers, artisans, and gentry. The Ming Dynasty led to a vast blurring of the distinction between the classes. City life was further established, which led to economic and urban development. Taoism, ancestral worship, and Buddhism were the major religions. Christianity was not too popular during this era. Architecture also flourished with the construction of tall pagodas and arched bridges.