This was one of the three Korean kingdoms and one of the world's longest lasting dynasties.
King Park Hyeokgeose founded it in 57 BC, but the empire actually was ruled by
the clan of Gyeongju Kim. Silla rulers conquered the other Korean kingdoms: Baekje in 660 AD;
Goguryeo in 668 AD.
Another major power player was the Seok clan, including King Talhae.
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Silla allied with Emperor Taizong against Goguryeo in 646 AD.
Taizong personally led an army that captured many fortresses on the Lioning Peninsula. However, the general
commanding Goguryeo forces at Ansi (modern Anshan) stymied further progress and Taizong withdrew. After
Taizong's death, Chinese forces returned in 661 and 662 AD but general Yeon Gaesomun
successfully stopped them. In 660 AD, the Baekje Kingdom (allied with Goguryeo) fell to the Silla-Tang alliance.
Following Yeon's death and a crisis within Goguryeo, Tang troops crossed the
Liao River in 667 AD. Joint Silla and Chinese captured
Pyongyang and ended Goguryeo rule. Angry that the Tang
refused to share Goguryeo's territory, Silla fomented opposition
that resulted in the Silla-Tang Wars (670-676 AD).
In 675 AD, Silla defeated a Tang army at the fortress of Maeso. A Silla fleet triumphed over a
Tang naval force in the Yellow Sea the following year.
King Naemul (Kim clan) started a system of
hereditary monarchy, eliminating a previous power-sharing method. General
Kim Yu-shin completed the conquest of
Goguryeo and King Munmu became the first to rule over a unified Korea. Silla experienced
civil wars during its last 150 years.