Xi Xia

Xi Xia
or Hsi Hsia

Kingdom of Tangut tribes that was established in the 11th century and flourished through the early 13th.

Founded by Li Yuanhao, who named it after the ancient Chinese state of Xia, it existed in an uneasy truce with China's Southern Song dynasty and the Liao dynasty of the Inner Asian Khitan tribes until it was conquered by Genghis Khan.

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▪ ancient kingdom, China
also spelled  Xixia , Wade-Giles romanization  Hsi Hsia , English  Western Xia 

      kingdom of the Tibetan-speaking Tangut tribes that was established in 1038 and flourished until 1227. It was located in what are now the northwestern Chinese provinces of Gansu and Shaanxi.

      Occupying the area along the trade route between Central Asia and Europe, the Tangut were content with being a tributary state of the Chinese during the Song dynasty period (960–1279) until 1038, when a new leader, Li Yuanhao, assumed the title of emperor as Zhao Yuanhao. Naming his new dynasty for the ancient Chinese state of Xia (Xia dynasty), Zhao embarked on a campaign to conquer all of China. But in 1044 he abandoned this attempt after the Chinese agreed to pay him an annual tribute.

      For the next two centuries the Xi (Western) Xia (as the dynasty became known to distinguish it from its ancient Chinese namesake) maintained an uneasy three-way truce with the Song and with the Liao dynasty (907–1125), established by the Inner Asian Juchen (Chinese: Nüzhen, or Ruzhen) tribes in North China. Modeling their government on that of the Song, the Xi Xia rulers adopted a new writing system for their people. Unlike the Chinese, they were ardent devotees of Buddhism and departed from the Chinese model in making Buddhism the state religion.

      The Xi Xia dynasty was finally conquered by the Mongol troops of Genghis Khan in 1227.

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Universalium. 2010.

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