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The Zhou and the Shang began as semi nomadic tribes which lived on the western side of the Shang kingdom. Their nomad way of life taught them how to work with different people who had different cultures. At around the 1040B.C the Zhou took over the Shang during a war fare. As part of their success, the Zhou gained loyalty of disaffected cities. The Shang had degenerated in their morals therefore; the Zhou used this idea to take over the Shang dynasty.  The Zhou found themselves adopting the Shang lifestyles to an extent of using the Shang knowledge of artisan (Ancient Dynasties, 1).

Due to their artistic lifestyles, the Shang dynasty was known to have distinctive ways of doing their art work.  There were largely involved in the casting of bronze where they molded ceramics which they used them in serving of food and wines to their ancestors. Another distinctive ways is their fully developed structure of writing (Ancient Dynasties, 1).  The complexity and state of development in their writings clearly portrayed the period of early development which up to now it is still not attested.  The most described characteristic and distinctive image was the decoration which was done to the bronze vessel called taotie.

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According to Ancient Dynasties (1), the Zhou who had taken over the dynasty and lifestyles of the Shang developed ways in which they tried to justify their conquering the Shang. In their justification, the Zhou leaders came up with the idea of 'heaven'. The idea 'heaven' was seen to be a supernatural deity  whose duty was to oversee all life, issue mandate to the  earthly leader  and to ensure that there was a vote of confidence.  Its idea was so long he rule well and with justice then he would retain all his mandates. The Zhou used this so as to justify that the chosen ruler would protect all people including the Shang against invaders.  

During the period of the Zhou dynasty, there were main events which occurred in two stages. The two stages were the era when the Zhou rule were relatively peacefully and the second is the period of the feudal state where the Zhou stated to fight amongst themselves in order to gain prominence (Ancient Dynasties, 1).  The events were associated to the intensification of agriculture, invention of the iron technology, spread of commerce and urbanization and the development of bureaucracy.

It is very evident that the Zhou dynasty was the longest serving dynasty in china.  Its tactics of survival was through adopting the different ways of living form the other dynasties. They had acquired skills such as writings and art from the Shang dynasty. The other way that they managed to serve a longer period was because they had carried their religion along with them where they worshipped the sun and stars.

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