The imerial chinese civil exam system
Editorial Review This Article has been reviewed for accuracy, reliability and adherence to academic standards prior to publication. Further information: Imperial examination in Chinese mythology Although, in a general way, the formative ideas behind the imperial exams can be traced back at least to Zhou dynasty times or, more mythologically, Yao such as imperial promotion for displaying skill in archery conteststhe imperial examination system in its classical manifestation is historically attested to have been established induring the Sui dynasty ; which in the quickly succeeding Tang dynasty was used only on a relatively small scale, especially in its early phase.
The all-day event repeated twice within a weekwas an important one in the community, with stalls being set up to sell food and family and well-wishers gazing on from outside.
During the Qing period, over a third of jinshi degree holders came from families with little or no educational background. Officials selected through the exams became dominant in the bureaucracy. Degrees were awarded to scholars from throughout China; indeed the provinces of Jiangsu and Zhejiang boasted the greatest number of jinshi graduates.
Even when a successful candidate was not given a job in administration, he would be held in great esteem by his community and would be consulted for advice on all sorts of matters.
Chinese civil service exam sample questions
Candidates took local exams, and those who passed could sit for the regional round. In theory, the imperial examination system insured that government officers would be chosen based on their merit, rather than on their family connections or wealth. Song dynasty. Tight quotas restricted the number of successful candidates at each level—for example, only three hundred students could pass the metropolitan examinations. The district degree was the shengyuan, which entailed exemption from both corporal punishment and the corvee labour dues, the right to wear a scholar's robes, and a small state salary. The examination system was imitated in other Asian countries, notably in Japan , Korea , and Vietnam. The civil service examination system was fully revived, though, in CE under the Ming dynasty CE.
Aftereducation was slanted heavily towards science as China strove to catch up with the rest of the world. For a young boy, simply going to school meant beginning the early part of the very curriculum which, if he succeeded at every level, would propel him into the examination system.
Some candidates repeatedly presented themselves for examination throughout their lives. In the face of European imperialism, Chinese scholar-officials looked to their traditions for solutions. Indeed, expected to stay closeted in individual exam cells, they also needed food, candles, and blankets. These examinations are regarded by most historians as the first standardized tests based on merit. Before winning influential friends and patrons through his talent, Tang was reduced to poverty as a consequence of his dishonesty. Exact quotes from the classics were required; misquoting even one character or writing it in the wrong form meant failure, so candidates went to great lengths to bring hidden copies of these texts with them, sometimes written on their underwear. Theoretically, he was to proctor the palace exams, although in practice he sent someone to represent him in that capacity. The Qin also added another level at the other end of this academic obstacle course. Modern Examinations The decline of the traditional examination and education system came towards the end of the Qing dynasty. The Tang period poet Du Fu is a good example; failure in the Imperial examinations in divorced him from the scholarly traditions of his family, and propelled him on an itinerant career as a poet. Here, each candidate would spend three days taking the exam. With now added a bit about it. The provincial restrictions resulted in a greater effect; for example, only 28 Han Chinese from South China were included among the candidates, the rest of the South China slots 47 being occupied by resident Mongols or Semu-ren, although 47 "racial South Chinese" who were not residents of South China were approved as candidates.
Only men succeeded, some women did try by dressing up as men, but none went undetected, only briefly during Empress Wu Zetian 's reign were women allowed to enter for the examinations.
And for centuries we succeeded. Papers were copied before marking so examiners could not identify a student by their calligraphy.
Examination and degree hierarchy. Examinations in China for the last 2, years Tue 3rd Sep Sounds, the Future and the oldest Thesaurus A mixed bag of updates to the web site has now been released.
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