chapter  8
The Warring States Period
Pages 33

The Warring States Period was a time of continuous violence that began and ended with series of dramatic events. Throughout the fi fth century BCE, the state of Jin was racked by civil warfare among a roster of powerful aristocratic clans ( Map 8.1 ). In a series of shifting alliances involving deadly battles, one by one most of those clans were exterminated. The outcome, in 403 BCE, was the fall of the legitimate ruling family of Jin and the partition of the state into the successor states of Hann, Wei, and Zhao (named for, and ruled by, the three clans that managed to survive the century of civil war). At the end of the Warring States Period the state of Qin, having adopted a policy of the comprehensive militarization of society, used its new-found strength to challenge and defeat each of the separate states of the Heartland Region, uniting all under Qin rule in 221 BCE.