Legacies of Ancient China Essay

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China, located in the far north easterly corner of the globe is the largest country in Asia and home to over 1.3 billon people. Some sources claim China to be the oldest known continuous civilization in the world, with more than 5000 year of culture (see bibliography). Therefore it comes with no surprise that ancient China had some of the most influential ‘thinkers’ of that period who helped to shape their world. The early Chinese left behind a great number of legacies which were the forerunners to the ideas and technologies we enjoy today such as basic medicine, paper currency, deep drilling and the bureaucracy system.

For the ancient Chinese, most of their knowledge of early Chinese medicine was obtained from the yellow emperor’s
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This system of currency was invented for merchants, who used it to deposit their cash in the capital, receiving a paper certificate which they could then exchange for money in the provinces. This private merchant enterprise was quickly taken over by the government in 812 AD. The technique was then used for the forwarding of local taxes and revenues to the capital. Nowadays paper currency is used in almost all modern countries because it is cheaper to produce and easier to carry than metal coins. In some countries like Australia however the use of paper currency has ended due to the fact that it’s too easily counterfeited and wears out too fast. Instead they use a bank note that’s made from a special polymer which makes it stronger and a lot harder to counterfeit.

By the first century BC the people of china had developed a device for deep drilling boreholes. Some of these are known to have reached depths of 4800 feet. They built derricks as much as 180 feet above the borehole to allow drill tubes to be raised and lowered. They stacked rocks with center holes from the surface to the deep stone layer as a guide for their drills. They then used hemp ropes and bamboo cables to reach down it to the earth and extract the natural gas. Modern deep drilling is done for all sorts of reasons, the two main reasons being for crude oil and natural gas. They can extract these

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