The Minneapolis Institute of Arts - Museum Home Page
The Art of Asia
History & Maps
Explore the Collection
Chinese Dynasty Guide

Yuan Dynasty

Dynasty Timeline Ching Dynasty Ming Dynasty Sung Dynasty Sung Dynasty Five Dynasties Tang Dynasty Sui Dynasty Six Dynasties Han Dynasty Chin Dynasty Chou Dynasty Shang Dynasty Neolithic Era

From This Period

Dragon Vase
Dragon Vase

Blue & White Dish
Blue & White Dish

Finch on a Citrus Branch
Finch on a Citrus Branch

Foliate Box and Cover
Foliate Box and Cover

See more objects from this dynasty


1280 - 1365

Pronunciation: "yoo-EN"

Mongol invader Genghis Khan and his hordes conquered much of Asia, including China; his grandson Kublai Khan established this dynasty, during which the Mongols reopened and expanded overland trade routes linking China, Central Asia, and the Mediterranean. Venetian merchant Marco Polo spent seventeen years exploring this exotic outpost, where he was surprised to discover advances as yet unheard of in Italy. The Yuan exported the first blue-and-white porcelain. And its artists regarded painting as a medium for self-expression, a departure from the "courtly" tradition of previous generations.

Forest Grotto Mongol Empire Map Silk Road Map

Video: Yuan Dynasty
Curator of Asian art Robert Jacobsen takes us through China's illustrious past by focusing on each of its historical dynasties.

Yuan Dynasty Map