Đại Việt

Kingdom of Đại Việt

Đại Việt Quốc ( 大越國)
Flag of Đại Việt
Flag of the Tây Sơn Dynasty in 1778
Imperial Standard of Đại Việt
Imperial Standard
Đại Việt during Lý Dynasty in 1100
Đại Việt during Lý Dynasty in 1100
Đại Việt (Annam) during the Later Lê Dynasty in 1757
Đại Việt (Annam) during the Later Lê Dynasty in 1757
Capital Hoa Lư
Đông Kinh
Thanh Hóa
Common languages Official
Buddhism (State religion from 968 to 1400)
Confucianism (State ideolody from 1428 to 1883)
Vietnamese folk religion
Government Monarchy
King or Emperor  
• 968–979
Đinh Bộ Lĩnh
• 1802–1820
Gia Long
• Emperor Lý Thánh Tông shortened Vietnam's name from Đại Cồ Việt to Đại Việt
• Emeperor Gia Long changed Đại Việt to Việt Nam
17 February 1804
1000 117,000 km2 (45,000 sq mi)
1492 620,000 km2 (240,000 sq mi)
1770 430,000 km2 (170,000 sq mi)
• 1000
2,152,000[citation needed]
• 1492
6,820,000[citation needed]
• 1770
11,020,000[citation needed]
• 1800
7,219,000[citation needed]
Currency Vietnamese văn, banknote
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Tĩnh Hải quân
Today part of
History of Vietnam
of Vietnam
Map of Vietnam showing the conquest of the south (the Nam tiến, 1069-1757).
2879–2524 BC Xích Quỷ
2524–258 BC Văn Lang
257–179 BC Âu Lạc
204–111 BC Nam Việt
111 BC – 40 AD Giao Chỉ
40–43 Lĩnh Nam
43–299 Giao Chỉ
299–544 Giao Châu
544–602 Vạn Xuân
602–679 Giao Châu
679–757 An Nam
757–766 Trấn Nam
766–866 An Nam
866–967 Tĩnh Hải quân
968–1054 Đại Cồ Việt
1054–1400 Đại Việt
1400–1407 Đại Ngu
1407–1427 Giao Chỉ
1428–1804 Đại Việt
1804–1839 Việt Nam
1839–1945 Đại Nam
1887–1954 Đông Pháp (Bắc Kỳ,
Trung Kỳ, Nam Kỳ)
from 1945 Việt Nam
Main template
History of Vietnam

Đại Việt (大越, IPA: [ɗâjˀ vìət]; literally Great Viet) was a Vietnamese kingdom in Southeast Asia from the 10th century AD to the early 19th century. Its early name, Đại Cồ Việt (大瞿越) , was established in 968 by Vietnamese ruler Đinh Bộ Lĩnh (丁部領) after he ended the Anarchy of the 12 Warlords, until the beginning of the reign of Lý Thánh Tông (李聖宗) (r. 1054–1072), the third emperor of the Lý dynasty. Đại Việt lasted until the reign of Gia Long (嘉隆) (r. 1802–1820), the first emperor of the Nguyễn dynasty, when he changed the name to Việt Nam.[1] Đại Việt is the second-longest used name for Vietnam after "Văn Lang" (文郎).[2] Its history is divided into successive reigns by eight royal dynasties: Đinh (丁) (968–980), Early Lê (前黎) (980–1009), (李) (1009–1226), Trần (陈) (1226–1400), Hồ (胡) (1400–1407), Later Lê (后黎) (1428–1789), the coup d'état Mạc (莫) (1527–1677) and the peasant-rebellion Tây Sơn (西山).

For a thousand years, the area of what is now Northern Vietnam (Jiaozhi, 交止) was ruled by a succession of Chinese regimes. In the late 9th century, the collapsing Tang dynasty was unable to retain control of the area, then known as Jinghai Jun. It lost control in 880 due to a series of military mutinies, local rebellions, and invasion by Nanzhao caused by tension between the local Vietnamese, aboriginals and Chinese political practices, influence, and customs.[3] In 905, the indigenous Viet people centered around the Red River Delta became de facto independent under the rule of the local Khúc clan,[4][5] and then the kingdom of the Ngô family. However, the royal power remained weak, resulting in a period of civil war between 12 war lords. In 968, Đinh Bộ Lĩnh reunited the country[6] under the name of Đại Cồ Việt and claimed the title Hoàng Đế (emperor).[7] In 1010, King Lý Thái Tổ relocated the Vietnamese capital from Hoa Lư to Thăng Long (modern-day Hanoi) and ushered in an era of flourishing Vietnamese Buddhism, peace and prosperity until the rise of the Neo-Confucian scholar class and administrative bureaucracy in the late 14th century.[8] During 13th century, Đại Việt successful repelled multiple Mongol invasions. It was briefly conquered by the Chinese Ming dynasty in the early 15th century, but eventually regained independence in 1427 under the leadership of Lê Lợi, the peasant rebel who liberated Đại Việt from Ming rule.

During the reign of Lê Thánh Tông, Đại Việt reached its golden age.[9][10] However, after his death in 1497, the kingdom swiftly declined, entered a period of destabilization known as the Southern and Northern courts which began in 1533 and ended in 1592. Đại Việt was again divided from 1627 to 1775 when two rival families, Trịnh and Nguyễn fought and competed against each other to contest control of the court. The Tây Sơn uprising eventually took control of the country in late 18th century, but was overthrown by Gia Long in 1802.

Throughout its long existence from 968 to 1804, Đại Việt flourished and acquired significant power in the region. The kingdom slowly annexed Champa's and Cambodia's territories, expanded Vietnamese territories to the south and west. Traditional beliefs, Confucian study, literature, trade and commerce flourished in Đại Việt and the capital in modern-day Hanoi was a center of trade and industry, its ruins, Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long is the major UNESCO World Heritage Site in Vietnam. The kingdom created great achievements in Vietnamese art and culture, it has left a substantial legacy to modern Vietnam; much of modern Vietnamese culture, language, customs, social norms and nationalism.



Origins and formation

The indigenous inhabitants in Northern Vietnam of ancient kingdom of Nanyue (c. 204 – 111 BC) were known as the Lạc Việt (Luoyue).[11] In 111 BC, Western Han dynasty (c. 202 BC – 9 AD) conquered Nanyue and incorporated the kingdom into Chinese rules, as known as Giao Chỉ (交趾). However until the 7th century, the Jiao region's population were largely still un-Sinicized indigenous people.[12] In 679, the Tang dynasty created Protectorate General to Pacify the South and a military government. In late 9th century, local Viet chieftains and highland people in central Vietnam, in a attempt to overthrow the Tang Chinese influences in the region, allied with Nanzhao.[13] Repeated Nanzhao attack and local rebels from 854 to 866 in Annan ousted the Chinese until Gao Pian recaptured it in 866.[14] In 880, the army in Annan mutinied, took the city of Đại La, and forced the military commissioner Zeng Gun to flee, ending de facto Chinese control in Vietnam.[15]

In 905, a local Vietnamese chieftain Khúc Thừa Dụ was elected as jiedushi (military governor) of Tĩnh Hải circuit amid the collapsing of Tang Empire. This notable event was widely regarded by Vietnamese historians as the reclaim of Vietnamese Independence after a thousand years of Imperial Chinese rules.[16] This independence was more secured by the naval battle on Bạch Đằng river in 938 and the kingdom of Tĩnh Hải under Ngô monarchs (939–965). However, the royal rule remained weak. From 948 to 968, Vietnamese warlords began fighting each other to take control the country, as known as Anarchy of the 12 Warlords period.

Early centralization and development

In 968, Duke Đinh Bộ Lĩnh (r. 968–979) defeated all warlords, reunited the country and claim himself emperor. He renamed the country to officially as Đại Cồ Việt (大瞿越). The term "Việt" is the same as the Chinese word "Yue", a name in ancient times of various non-Chinese groups who lived in what is now northern/southern China and northern Việt Nam. In 1010 Lý Thái Tổ, founder of the Lý Dynasty, issued the "Edict on the Transfer of the Capital" and moved the capital of Đại Cồ Việt to Thăng Long (Hanoi) and built the Imperial Citadel of Thăng Long where the Hanoi Citadel would later stand.

In 1054, Lý Thánh Tông – the third Lý emperor – renamed the country Đại Việt. In 1149 the Lý dynasty opened Vân Đồn seaport in the modern north-eastern province of Quảng Ninh to foreign trade.[a]

Đại Việt is a strategic location. By invading Đại Việt, the Mongols would be able to bypass the Himalaya and drive deep into South East Asia. However, the Mongolians of the Yuan Dynasty invaded Đại Việt three times and were defeated. The last battle, the Battle of Bạch Đằng (1288), was a decisive defeat for the Mongolians. Đại Việt's perseverance thwarted Mongolian attempts to conquer South East Asia and prevented the third Mongolian invasion of Japan, as the Mongol navy was completely destroyed during Bạch Đằng. This became one the greatest victories in Vietnamese military history.

In 1400, the founder of the Hồ dynasty, Hồ Quý Ly usurped the throne and changed the country's name to "Đại Ngưu" (大虞), but his dynasty was overthrown by the invading Ming Empire who annexed Đại Ngu in 1407 for 20 years until 1427. The Ming renamed the area "Giao Chỉ (or Jiaozhi)". In 1428, Lê Lợi, the founder of the Lê dynasty, liberated Giao Chỉ and restored the kingdom of Đại Việt. During the reign of Lê Thánh Tông (r. 1460–1497), he expanded Đại Việt's border and influences from Ava (Myanmar) to the Mekong Delta.

Since 16th century, the name "Việt Nam" gradually became more common and popular in literature and government's officials.[18] The name "Đại Việt" came to end when the Nguyễn dynasty took power. The country's name was officially changed yet again, in 1804, this time to "Việt Nam" (越南) by Gia Long.

Rise of Confucianism

Brief Ming occupation

Civil wars and decline




The Mahasattva of Truc Lam leaves the Mountain. Scroll, Ink on paper. Located in the Liaoning Provincial Museum, China. Completed in 1363.

Timeline (dynasties)

Started in 968 and ended in 1804.

                Ming domination       North-South separation     French Indochina  
Chinese domination Ngô   Đinh Early Lê Trần Hồ Later Trần   Mạc Tây Sơn Nguyễn Modern time
                          Trịnh lords        
                          Nguyễn lords        
939       1009 1225 1400     1427 1527 1592 1788 1858 1945

See also