Wuhu

Wuhu

Wuhu (zh-sp|s=芜湖|p=Wúhú; literally "Weedy Lake") is a prefecture-level city in the southeastern Anhui province, People's Republic of China. Sitting on the southeast bank of the Yangtze River, Wuhu borders Xuancheng to the southeast, Chizhou and Tongling to the southwest, Chaohu to the northwest, Ma'anshan to the northeast, and the province of Jiangsu to the east.

Administration

The prefecture-level city of Wuhu administers 7 county-level divisions, including 4 districts and 3 counties.

*Sanshan District (三山区)
*Yijiang District (弋江区)
*Jinghu District (镜湖区)
*Jiujiang District (鸠江区)
*Wuhu County (芜湖县)
*Fangchang County (繁昌县)
*Nanling County (南陵县)

History

Wuhu is known to have been inhabited since at least 770 BCE. It became a strategically important town during the Three Kingdoms period (220 BC-65 AD), when it was controlled by the Eastern Wu. At this time it was known as Qiuzu (Chiu-tzu). Under the Ming dynasty Wuhu developed into a major commercial center and river port, and since that time has been known as a center of the rice trade.

In 1644, the Hongguang Emperor (better known as the Prince of Fu), one of the last emperors of the Ming Dynasty, was captured by forces of the new Qing Dynasty in Wuhu. The city became a treaty port in 1876 and has remained a commercial center since that time. The city's Roman Catholic cathedral, St. Joseph Cathedral (圣若瑟主教座堂), dates from this time.

Trade in rice, wood, and tea flourished at Wuhu until the Warlord Era of the 1920s and 1930s, when bandits were active in the area. Under the Japanese occupation in the Second World War, Chinese resistance fighters hid in the lakes around Wuhu, by submerging themselves and breathing through reeds.

Major industries only began to be developed in Wuhu after the Second World War, with the development of the textile industry, paper mills, and a large automobile factory. Despite this, Wuhu has lagged behind Ma'anshan and Tongling in industrial production, and remains primarily a commercial and collecting center for trade in rice, silk, cotton, tea, wheat and eggs.

Culture

The great poet Li Bai spent his late life in Wuhu, it is said, due to its striking landscape. Li Bai was born in a Central Asian town and raised in the southwestern China. Xie Tiao, one of the most distinctive Six Dynasty poets whom he greatly admired, left many poems when holding positions here.

In the Tang dynasty (619-907), the poet Du Mu wrote a famous poem "Thoughts on Staying Again at Wuhu". A factory in Wuhu carries on the local craft of making wrought iron pictures. Other local handicrafts are embossed lacquerware and rice straw pith patchwork. A famous stone tablet in Wuhu recording local events of the Song dynasty period (ca. 1000 AD) is considered to be a masterpiece of the renowned calligrapher Mi Fu. In the Western world, Wuhu is now known as the home city to many adopted Chinese children.

Folklore

An itinerant blacksmith named Tang Tianchi is reputed to have invented the wrought-iron picture in Wuhu, when a painter whom he admired chided him, "You will never make pictures by beating iron."

Another blacksmith of the Spring and Autumn period (770-476 BC) named Gan Jiang was famous for sword making. Zhe Shan (Reddish Brown Hill) is said to get its colour from the flames of Gan Jiang's furnace. Sheng Shan (Sacred Hill) is the legendary location of his sword grinding rock and tempering pool.

Food

Wuhu and Anqing are noted centers of the Yanjiang cuisine. It specializes in freshwater fish and poultry, and features special techniques of chopping, shaping, and colouring. The flavour of Yanjiang dishes is often enhanced by sweetening and smoking.

Tourism

*Mirror Lake (镜湖)
*Jiu Zi Plaza (鸠兹广场)
*Mount Zhe, a hill park(赭山)
*Wuhu Olympic Stadium(奥林匹克体育场)
*Yangtze River Bridge Crossing(长江大桥)

Education

*Anhui Normal University (安徽师笵大学)
*Anhui University of Technology and Science (安徽工程科技学院)
*Wannan Medical College (皖南医学院)
*Wuhu Radio and TV University (芜湖广播电视大学)
*Wuhu Vocational Institute of Technology

Notable people

*Xiao Yuncong (1596 - 1673), Ming Dynasty painter
*Zhao Wei (b. 1976), Actress

Notable constructions

* 229 metre tall pylons of Yangtze River Crossing Wuhu, a part of HVDC Three Gorges-Changzhou. Tallest pylons used for HVDC.

Orphanage and nursing home

For a time starting around 1995, all of the children from Wuhu Orphanage were given the Chinese surname Wu, but more recently other surnames have been used. The children's given names are based on a variety of sources, such as the street, location or time of day when they are found, or sometimes a wish for their well being, such as using the word "bridge" in the name of a child with a cleft palate. [Barbara Jones, [http://fwcc.org/smallhappiness.html "A Small Happiness"] , "Good Housekeeping", December 1994]

References

External links

* [http://www.wuhu.gov.cn Government website of Wuhu] (available in Chinese, English and Japanese)
* [http://annatam.com/study-chinese-in-a-little-known-china-city-2/ Wuhu Blog]


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