The recorded history of Beijing as a city can date back to more than 3,000 years ago. During the Eastern Zhou Dynasty (c. 11th century-771 B.C.), the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 B.C.) and the Warring States Period (475-221 B.C.), Beijing was the capital city of the State of Yan, which was ruled by dukes or princes under the emperor. From the Qin Dynasty (221-207 B.C.) and the Han Dynasty (206 B.C.) to the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127),Beijing was a major city and also a strategic point in northern China.
When the Qidan (Khitan) people founded the Liao Dynasty (907-1125),they established Beijing, which was then under their occupation and was called Jiuzhou, as the secondary capital under the name of Nanjing (southern capital). Afterwards, the dynasties of Jin(1115-1234), Yuan (1271-1368), Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) all chose Beijing as their capital city.
In 1928, the Nanjing-based nationalist government of the Republic of China designated Beijing as the Beiping Special Municipality. In 1930, the municipality was renamed as Beiping / Peking City.
On September 27, 1949, the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference decided that the newborn People's Republic of China would base its capital in Beiping and renamed the city as Beijing.