Thursday, September 4, 2008

Chinese Wuhuan

The Wuhuan were a nomadic people who inhabited northern China, in what is now the provinces of Hebei, Liaoning, Shanxi, the municipality of Beijing and the autonomous region of Inner Mongolia.

They were descended from the Donghu, who were defeated by the Xiongnu.

They were active throughout the latter half of the Han Dynasty, often incorporated into the regular military forces of the Han armies. Unlike most major non-Chinese peoples on the frontiers of the Chinese empire, the Wuhuan were relatively cooperative with the imperial court. Around the fall of the dynasty in the 190s, however, the Wuhuan joined in many of the rebellions and internal wars of the Chinese. In the 200s, the "Wuhuan of the three commanderies", the tribes closest to the Chinese, supported Yuan Shao, the major warlord north of the Yellow River. In 207, Cao Cao led a forced march deep into Wuhuan territory and decisively defeated them at Mount Bolang. Many Wuhuan's powerful horsemen joined him and became known as the "greatest cavalry under heaven". Although various Wuhuan leaders led sporadic revolts throughout the third century, by the fourth century they had largely been displaced by the Xianbei.

No comments: