State of Tibet
ཏཏེ་ ཨོཕ༹་ ཊིབེཏ་
Timeline: Franco-American War
Flag of Tibet Faith Buddhism Vajra
Flag Coat of Arms
Anthem "དྲགོན་ ཨོཕ༹་ ཏིབེཏ་"
(and largest city)
Other cities Shigatse, Gyantse
  others Chinese
  others Bön, Hinduism
Demonym Tibetan
Government Elective monarchy
Internet TLD .tb
Organizations League of Nations, Union of Greater China

The State of Tibet (ཏཏེ་ ཨོཕ༹་ ཊིབེཏ་) is a semi-sovereign, autonomous state, which is technically under the sovereignty of China under the Union of Greater China. Tibet borders India, China, the autonomous region of East Turkestan, Afghanistan, and Kokand, Nepal, and Bhutan.


Early history

Tibetan empire greatest extent 780s-790s CE

The greatest extent of the Tibetan Empire

The power that became the original Tibetan state originated when a group convinced Tagbu Nyazigs to rebel against Gudri Zingpoje, who was in turn a vassal of the Zhang-Zhung empire. The group prevailed against Gudri. At this point Namri Löntsän was leader of a clan which prevailed over all of the neighboring clans; one by one, he gained control over all of the neighboring clans in the area. This new-born regional state would later become the Tibetan Empire. Traditional Tibetan history preserves a lengthy list of rulers whose exploits were subject to Chinese emperors. From the 7th to the 11th century a series of emperors ruled Tibet; of whom the three most important in later religious tradition were Songtsän Gampo, Trisong Detsen and Ralpacan, "the three religious kings". In the opening years of the 9th century, its influence extended as far south as Bengal and as far north as Mongolia. The varied terrain of the empire and the difficulty of transportation, coupled with the new ideas that came into the empire as a result of its expansion, helped to create stresses with the ruler; for example adherents of the Bön religion found themselves in tension with the newly introduced Buddhism. Later, the Era of Fragmentation arrived; the era in which the Tibetan Empire collapsed. The period was dominated by rebellion and the rise of regional warlords. Upon the death of Langdarma, the last emperor of a unified Tibetan empire, there was a controversy over whether he would be succeeded by his alleged heir Yumtän or by Ösung. A civil war ensued; this destroyed the Tibetan government and left it to be governed by warlords. After the breakup of the Tibetan empire in 842, Nyima-Gon, a representative of the ancient Tibetan royal house, founded the first Ladakh dynasty. Central rule was largely nonexistent over the Tibetan region from 842 to 1247. According to traditional accounts, Buddhism had survived surreptitiously in the region of Kham. During the mid-1200s, the region was conquered by the Mongols, bringing administrative rule back to Tibet.

Post-Mongol era

Yuan dynasty and Tibet

Tibet within the Yuan Dynasty

Under the Yuan Dynasty; a successor of the Mongol Empire, Tibet was administered by the Bureau of Buddhist and Tibetan Affairs, otherwise known as Xuanzheng Yuan, separate from other Yuan provinces. One of the department's purposes was to select a dpon-chen, usually appointed by the lama and confirmed by the Mongol emperor in Beijing. The Mongol dominance over Tibet was largely indirect; the region enjoyed a period of relative autonomy and was virtually an independent state. However, after a dispute in 1253, China showed Tibet they truly aren't independent by sending their troops to execute the dpon-chen after a dispute. With the support of Kublai Khan, Drogön Chögyal Phagpa, a religious leader of Tibet, became the preeminent power in Tibet Through the influence of Mongol rule, Tibet gained even more autonomy. In 1268, Tibet was divided into thirteen myriarchies. By the end of the century, Western Tibet lay under the effective control of imperial officials, almost all Tibetans. Between 1346 and 1354, towards the end of the Yuan dynasty, the House of Pagmodru would topple the ruling Sakya, bringing Tibet to control of the Kagyu sect. The following 80 years or so were a period of relative stability. Later, the Phagmodrupa, Rinpungpa and Tsangpa monarchies would rise; these houses gave Tibet true independence. Their model of government was based off of the ancient Tibetan Empire.

Modern Tibet

Qing dynasty and Tibet

Tibet within the Qing Dynasty

The Kangxi Emperor of the Qing dynasty sent an expedition to Tibet in response to the occupation of the region by the Dzungar Khanate; together with Tibetan forces they expelled the Dzungars from Tibet in 1720. They brought Kelzang Gyatso with them from Kumbum to Lhasa and he was installed as the seventh Dalai Lama. At this time, the Qing protectorate over Tibet was established. In 1721, the Qing established a government in Lhasa consisting of a council (the Kashag) of three Tibetan ministers, headed by Kangchennas. The Dalai Lama's rule at this point was mostly symbolic. After the succession of the Yongzheng Emperor in 1722, a series of reductions by Qing forces in Tibet occurred; however Tibetan nobility took control of Lhasa in 1727. The Dalai Lama returned to Lhasa in 1735, temporal power remained with Polhanas. The Qing found Polhanas to be an effective ruler over a stable Tibet, so he remained dominant until his 1747 death. At multiple places such as Lhasa, Batang, Dartsendo, Lhari, Chamdo, and Litang, Green Standard Army troops were garrisoned throughout the Dzungar war; the Qing occupation of Tibet gave them an edge in the war. In 1903, the United Kingdom invaded Tibet in hopes of annexing it as a part of British India. Before the British troops arrived in Lhasa, the 13th Dalai Lama fled to Outer Mongolia, and then went to Beijing in 1908. After the fall of the Qing, Tibet declared independence. In 1950, the Republic of China annexed Tibet in response to the Pacific War. In 1951, due to outrage from the multi-ethnic parts of China, the Union of Greater China was established, and shortly after Tibet entered. It is a mostly independent area, under the authority of the Dalai Lama.


Ethnic groups

Number Group
1 Tibetans
2 Chinese
3 Mongols
4 Indians
5 Bhutanese


Number Group
1 Buddhism
2 Bön
3 Hinduism
4 Christianity
5 Islam

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