The Zhou Dynasty of China began in 1046 BC and ended in 256 BC. It is one of the most famous dynasties of Ancient China because it is when the Zhou general Sun Tzu, wrote the famous book "Art of War". The first known king of the dynasty was King Wu of Zhou who overthrew the Shang Dynasty of China. The language spoken in the Zhou Dynasty was Old Chinese, an early form of Chinese spoken from 1200 BC to around 3rd Century BC. The main religion the Zhou Chinese practiced was the traditional Chinese religion which included the worship of many gods and goddesses, belief in dragons, shamanism, and ancestor worship.