The Yi dynasty (in green)
(and largest city)
|Recognised regional languages||Tagalog, Pangasinese, Bicolano, Bisaya, Cebuano,|
|Government||Absolute monarchy under the Yi Imperial Household|
|Legislature||Yi State Council|
|Currency||Chang (钱, 창 or ¢)|
During the first half of the dynasty, the Yi Imperial Household (aided by the State Council) led the development of a strong centralised bureaucracy and the entrenchment neo–Confucian ideals into Han society (though at the cost of native animist and Buddhist beliefs); thus resulting in the height of classical Han culture, trade, science, literature, and technology and the consolidation of royal rule. It was also during this period that the first concept of a Han ethnicity appeared, aided by state-funded assimilation policies and the abolishment of the rigid caste system.
However, the second half of the dynasty was marked with severe political strife and decentralisation. This, coupled with peasant revolts and a harsh isolationist policy, would even weaken the Yi dynasty to a point that it could not resist Western encroachment on its territory; eventually being subject to multiple unequal treaties before ultimately being annexed by the United States following the Han–American War.
The dynasty has left a major impact on Han society and culture; influencing modern etiquette, language, cultural norms, societal attitudes, superstitions and mythology. The Han language evolved significantly during his dynasty; adopting numerous Chinese loanwords, while shedding the use of tones and many archaic diphthongs.
Government and politics
For much of its existence, until 1861 with China's defeat at the Second Opium War, the Yi dynasty was a Chinese tributary state that upheld nominal Chinese suzerainty in exchange for protection and access to trade. Like its predecessors, the Yi dynasty were treated much more favourably than its other tributaries (such as Japan) in terms of trade, as the Chinese see the Hans as a strategic ally in Southeast Asia.
Other countries it had established formal relations with were Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Brunei, Bali, and Spain. However, during the second half of the dynasty, the Yi severed all diplomatic ties with every country apart from China.