What's in a name? Beijing means "northern capital", but the city has had quite a few different names during its long history.
Beijing's earliest recorded fossil remains are those of the Peking Man dating back 500,000 years.
|City of Ji, Beijing's First Phase
The founding of Beijing can most probably be attributed to the Yellow Emperor, a formidable leader of the surrounding agricultural settlements.
|Capital of the Liao and Jin Dynasties
By the early 10th century, the Tang Dynasty was on the verge of collapse. Grasping their chance, the Khitan moved south and garrisoned in Ji, making it their second capital.
|Reconstruction of the city under the Yuan
In 1271, Kublai Khan named the new dynasty Yuan and declared Zhongdu as his capital Dadu (Great Capital).
|Capital of the Ming and Qing Dynasties
The restoration of the rule of the Han people came with the Ming Dynasty whose armies conquered Dadu in 1368, later renaming the city Beiping.
|Capital of New China
Beijing's most recent chapter began on January 31, 1949 as the Chinese People's Liberation Army marched into the city under the command of Chairman Mao Zedong.