Shih Huang Ti, the First Emperor of China

Shih Huang Ti

Shih Huang Ti (259-210 B.C.), is the name by which Prince Ching (or Cheng), the putative son of Chuang Siang Wang, ruler of the feudal State of Tsin, is known in Chinese history. In 246 b.c., when only thirteen, Shih Huang Ti succeeded to the throne of Tsin, then all but paramount, and remained for several years under the tutelage of a wily adventurer named Lü Puhwei, regarded by Chinese critics and historians as bis father. Under his advice the subjugation of the feudal princes, who still remained faithful to the house of Chow, was continued with vigor, and succeeded so well that in 221 B.C., the twenty-sixth year of his reign, the ruler declared himself the sole master of China, assuming the title Shih Huang Ti, or First Emperor. The feudal system was abolished, the whole country as it existed then was divided into thirty-six provinces, and Hien-yahg, near the present Singanfu, in Shensi, became his capital. He ordained, under pen­alty of branding and four years' service on the Great Wall, that all books except those on agriculture. medicine, and divination be delivered up to be burned. Four and sisty scholars, who protested, alive. The emperor constructed roads and canals, erected many fine buildings, and, to protect the country from the inroads of the Huns and other barbarians, he constructed the Chinese Wall.