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Sui and Tang Chinese

Historical Overview Section

The Tang Empire was at its height of power up until the middle of the 8th century when the An Shi Rebellion (755-763) destroyed the prosperity of the empire. An Lushan was a half-Sogdian, half-Turk Tang commander and had had experience fighting the Liao Khitans of Manchuria yet most of his campaigns against the Liao Khitans were unsuccessful. He was given great responsibility in Hebei, which allowed him to rebel with an army of more than one hundred thousand troops. Despite early victories scored by Tang General Guo Ziyi (697-781), the newly recruited troops of the army at the capital were no match for An Lushan's die-hard frontier veterans, so the court fled and called upon the help of the Later Horse Nomad Uyghur Turks in 756. The Later Horse Nomad Uighurs helped recapture the Tang capital from the rebels, but they refused to leave until the Tang paid them an enormous sum of tribute in silk. Even Abbasid Arabs assisted the Tang in putting down An Lushan's rebellion. The Tibetans also spotted an opportunity and raided many areas under Chinese control, and even after the Tibetan Empire had fallen apart in 842 (and the Uyghurs soon after) the Tang were in no position to reconquer Central Asia after 763, although they slowly rebuilt their shattered economy and state structures.

The last great ambitious ruler of the Tang Dynasty was Emperor Xianzong of Tang (r. 805-820). He also had an effective well trained imperial army stationed at the capital led by his court eunuchs; this was the Army of Divine Strategy, numbering 240,000 in strength as recorded in 798. Between the years 806 and 819, Emperor Xianzong conducted seven major military campaigns to quell the rebellious provinces that had claimed autonomy from central authority, managing to subdue all but two of them. But this couldn't last and the empire received another body blow when a series of natural calamities and the Huang Chao Rebellion (874-884) resulted in the sacking of both Chang'an and Luoyang and took an entire decade to suppress. Although the rebellion was defeated by the Tang, it never recovered from that crucial blow weakening it for the future military powers to take over. There were also large groups of bandits, in the size of small armies, that ravaged the countryside in the last years of the Tang, who smuggled illicit salt, ambushed merchants and convoys, and even besieged several walled cities.

In 907, after almost 300 years in power, the dynasty was ended when one of the increasingly autonomous military governors Zhu Wen (known soon after as Taizu of Later Liang) deposed the last emperor of Tang, Emperor Ai of Tang, and took the throne for himself. He established his Later Liang Dynasty, which thereby inaugurated the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period but was himself deposed by Li Cunxu who declared himself emperor in 923. The new Later Tang Dynasty had a few years of relative calm, followed by unrest and in 936, Shi Jingtang, a Shatuo Turk was aided by the Manchurian Liao Khitan Empire in a rebellion against the dynasty.

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Army Lists

Sample army lists for this army
200AP list from Derby 2017

Competent
2 Nobles Heavy cavalry bow Elite
4 Halberdiers Heavy swordsmen 2HW ------
2 Bowmen Bowmen ------
==
Brilliant
4 Halberdiers Heavy swordsmen 2HW
3 Tribal Auxiliaries Medium swordsmen
2 Bowmen Light infantry bow
1 Bowmen Bowmen
==
Included Competent Sha'To ally
2 Nobles Heavy cavalry bow Elite
1 Nobles Heavy cavalry bow ------
2 Horse Archers Light cavalry bow ----


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