I know that the question is ill-defined, and at best there would be a blurry answer.

I'd like to know about the start of actual Chinese history, when it starts to become moderately reliable (about people and events that actually existed) and more than a few sketchy details.

For China, I gather that there are severe doubts about the existence of the Xia, but the history of the Han at the latest is reasonably solid; if so, the veil would start to lift somewhere between those times.

For a Roman analogy: I gather that history before the Gaulish sack of Rome in 390ish B.C. is very iffy and folklorish; I don't care about stories of Romulus and Remus or the seven kings.

So when does Chinese historiography start to firm up and provide some real meat?

/u/cthulhushrugged?

EDIT: I hope the mods don't mind a bit of back-seat modding. Something like a dozen "joke" replies have boiled down to "not in current times". (1) There is the "current politics" rule, so you're making the mods take the effort to remove them. (2) I refuse to believe that all non-Chinese writers outside China are also 100% unreliable, so it's not true. (3) My question is about the earliest time for which there are enough surviving and reliable written records that it's possible to have an outline of history.

Source: reddit post


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