Twenty-Four Histories

The 24 dynastic histories (二十四史, èrshísìshǐ ) are the basic works of Chinese historiography. This is a chronicle of the cycle, which was compiled from the time around the 2nd century BC to the first half of the 18th century. The 24 dynastic histories describe in 3,249 volumes with approximately 40 million characters 4000 years of Chinese history.


The term " 24 dynastic histories " originates from 1775, the 40th year of the reign of the Qianlong Emperor. At that time, the last Chronicle, the revised "History of the Ming Dynasty," and issued a complete.

In the " 24 dynastic histories " it is not the story of 24 dynasties, the volumes overlap rather sometimes. They provide information about the rise and fall of dynasties, politics, economy, military affairs and culture. Systematic change of dynasty, important personalities, achievements in science, technology, art and literature, the division of the country into administrative regions, legislation and foreign policy are presented.

Outline of the work (nomenclature )

The historical works are generally of three parts:

Detailed chronology

Genus -specific order

In addition to the historical record of the 24 dynastic histories also be arranged genus-specific:

  • Four early works (前 四史): Shiji, written by Sima Qian, 91 BC
  • Han Shu, written by Ban Gu, 82 AD
  • Sanguo Zhi, written by Chen Shou, 289
  • Hou Hanshu written by Fan Ye, 445
  • Liang Shu, written by Yao Silian, 636
  • Chen Shu, written by Yao Silian, 636
  • For Qi Shu, written by Li Baiyao, 636
  • Zhou Shu, written by Linghu Defen, 636
  • Sui Shu, written by Wei Zheng, 636
  • Jin Shu, written by Fang Xuanling, 648
  • Nan Shi, written by Li Yanshou, 659
  • In Shi, written by Li Yanshou, 659
  • Liao Shi, written by Toktoghan, 1345
  • Jin Shi, written by Toktoghan, 1345
  • Song Shi, written by Toktoghan, 1345