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Ningbo, the commercial hub in East Asian seas

BY :Sophia

UPDATED :February 15, 2019

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这个城市,七千年前就有人划船出海了? Ningbo, the commercial hub in East Asian seas

Source: TravelChinaGuide.com

Ningbo is the second biggest city of Zhejiang province in China's southeast coastal area. It is separated from Shanghai by the Hangzhou Bay to the north, faces Zhoushan to the east in the East China Sea, and borders Shaoxing and Taizhou on the west and south.

The city was formerly known as Mingzhou in Tang dynasty, but its name was changed into Ningbo (calm wave) in 1381 in Ming dynasty.

这个城市,七千年前就有人划船出海了? Ningbo, the commercial hub in East Asian seas

宁波三江口 The Ningbo city

The city boasts the famous Hemudu Site, which flourished just south of the Hangzhou Bay in the Neolithic Age and proved that Ningbo is one of the first places in the world to cultivate rice. A wooden oar unearthed from the site might have hinted that people about 7000 years ago had already started to canoe.

这个城市,七千年前就有人划船出海了? Ningbo, the commercial hub in East Asian seas

浙江省宁波市余姚市河姆渡遗址出土的木桨 The wooden oar unearthed from the Hemudu site

Located at the mid-point of the China's eastern coastline, Ningbo enjoys many advantages to develop its sea shipping and maritime trade.

The monsoons and ocean currents facilitate its ships to sail north to Japan in summer, and to the South China Sea in winter. The Yaojiang River and many streams flow across the city and connect with the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, facilitating shipping across the city's vast expanse of hinterland.

这个城市,七千年前就有人划船出海了? Ningbo, the commercial hub in East Asian seas

宁波天童寺,佛教东传的圣地 The Tiantong Temple in Ningbo, which witnessed the spread of Buddhism to China.

In Tang dynasty, the city, with flourishing ports and official shipyards, became a busy commercial hub. Ships travelling between China and Southeast Asian and Arabian countries frequented the Mingzhou port and Japanese envoys also came visiting. Local commercial groups emerged, and goods like porcelain and tea were sold worldwide.

In Ming dynasty, the city, renamed Ningbo, was the only port for Japanese envoys to conduct sea trade on their way to pay tribute to the Chinese emperor. In Qing dynasty, Zhejiang Customs, one of the four customs in China, was set up in Ningbo, which reflected the prosperous foreign trade in the city.

这个城市,七千年前就有人划船出海了? Ningbo, the commercial hub in East Asian seas

Through ancient sea routes, Ningbo has exported both its goods and culture to foreign countries and facilitated the cultural exchange between Chinese and foreign cities along the ancient Maritime Silk Road.

Ningbo's maritime trade history has left the city with many historical sites, such as the Tiantong Temple, which witnessed the spread of Buddhism to China, the site of Yue Kiln, the cradle for celadon; and the site of Yongfengku, a warehouse of the trade management office in Yuan dynasty.

To better protect its cultural heritage of the ancient Maritime Silk Road, Ningbo joined China's 24-city Alliance for Maritime Silk Road Heritage Protection and Inscription on UNESCO World Heritage List.

Stay tuned for our articles these few days to lean more about the culture and history of Ningbo city.

 

Source: WeChat(丝路云帆)

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