For this, I apologize. Read at your own discretion. Others will find it interesting, informative and hopefully educational. An attempt will also be made to theorize what actually took place in camp that stormy night back in by piecing together bits and pieces of a six-minute audio recording left behind.
Imperial examination in Chinese mythology The imperial examination system in its classical manifestation is historically attested to have been established induring the Sui dynastywhen the emperor could call for tests to be administered.
In the following Tang dynastytests were used on a small scale until the examination system was extensively expanded during the reign of Wu Zetian: However most government posts were still recruited through personal recommendation and connections to the court.
It was not until the Song dynasty that most officials were recruited through examination. The Song emperors expanded both examinations and the government school system so that the number of those who passed the exams expanded to four to five times that of the Tang.
Thus the system played a key role in the selection of the scholar-officials, who formed the elite members of society. During the Ming and Qing dynasties, the system contributed to the narrowness of intellectual life and the autocratic power of the emperor. The system continued with some modifications until its abolition under the Qing dynasty.
Other brief interruptions to the system occurred, such as at the beginning of the Yuan dynasty in the 13th century. The modern examination system for selecting civil servants also indirectly evolved from the imperial one.
The regular higher level degree examination cycle was nominally decreed in to be 3 years. In practice both before and after this, the examinations were irregularly implemented for significant periods of time: The jinshi tests were not National examination should be banned yearly event and should not be considered so; the annual average figures are a necessary artifact of quantitative analysis.
This structure prevents cheating in exams. Han dynasty[ edit ] Candidates for offices recommended by the prefect of prefecture were examined by the minister of ceremony and then presented to the emperor.
Recruitment and appointment in the Han dynasty was primarily through recommendations by aristocrats and local officials.
Recommended individuals were also primarily aristocrats. In theory, recommendations were based on a combination of reputation and ability but it's not certain how well this worked in practice.
Oral examinations on policy issues were sometimes conducted personally by the emperor himself during Western Han times.
Previously, potential officials never sat for any sort of academic examinations. The examinations did not offer a formal route to commissioned office and the primary path to office remained through recommendations.
Though connections and recommendations remained more meaningful than the exam, the initiation of the examination system by Emperor Wu had a cultural significance, as the state determined the most important examination material were Confucian.
During the Han dynasty, these examinations were primarily used for the purpose of classifying candidates who had been specifically recommended. Even during the Tang dynasty the quantity of placements into government service through the examination system only averaged about nine persons per year, with the known maximum being less than 25 in any given year.
This system continued until it was abolished in by Emperor Wen of Sui who created a system wherein every prefecture would supply three scholars a year. For the first time, an examination system was explicitly instituted for a category of local talents.
However, the Sui dynasty was short-lived, and the system did not reach its mature development until afterwards. Eventually these became just one jinshi degree.
At this point the exam became administered by the Ministry of Rites. A pivotal point in the development of imperial examinations arose with the rise of Wu Zetian. Wu Zetian was exceptional: Reform of the imperial examinations to include a new class of elite bureaucrats derived from humbler origins became a keystone of Wu's gamble to retain power.
Wu lavished favors on the newly graduated jinshi degree-holders, increasing the prestige associated with this path of attaining a government career, and clearly began a process of opening up opportunities to success for a wider population pool, including inhabitants of China's less prestigious southeast area.
Wu's progressive accumulation of political power through enhancement of the examination system involved attaining the allegiance of previously under-represented regions, alleviating frustrations of the literati, and encouraging education in various locales so even people in the remote corners of the empire would work on their studies in order to pass the imperial exams, and thus developed a nucleus of elite bureaucrats useful from the perspective of control by the central government.
Examples of officials whom she recruited through her reformed examination system include Zhang YueLi Jiaoand Shen Quanqi. She introduced major changes in regard to the Tang system, increasing the pool of candidates permitted to take the test by allowing commoners and gentry previously disqualified by their non-elite backgrounds to attempt the tests.
Successful candidates then became an elite nucleus of bureaucrats within her government. The less-esteemed examinations tested for skills such as mathematics, law, and calligraphy.
The success rate on these tests of knowledge on the classics was between 10 and 20 percent, but for the thousand or more candidates going for a jinshi degree each year in which it was offered, the success rate for the examinees was only between 1 and 2 percent: With the disappearance of the old aristocracy, Wu's system of bureaucrat recruitment once more became the dominant model in China, and eventually coalesced into the class of nonhereditary elites who would become known to the West as "mandarins," in reference to Mandarinthe dialect of Chinese employed in the imperial court.
In the Song dynasty — more than a hundred higher level examinations were held. Officials selected through the exams became dominant in the bureaucracy.Supporting student-athlete success on the field, in the classroom and in life by integrating athletics into higher education.
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