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Hubei

From Academic Kids

Not to be confused with the unrelated province of Hebei
湖北省
Hběi Shěng
Abbreviation: 鄂 (pinyin: )
Missing image
China-Hubei.png
Hubei is highlighted on this map

Origin of Name 湖 h - lake
北 běi - north
"north of Lake Dongting"
Administration Type Province
Capital and
Largest City
Wuhan
CPC Hubei Committee Secretary Yu Zhengsheng
Governor Luo Qingquan
Area 185,900 km² (14th)
Population (2002)
 - Density
59,880,000 (9th)
322/km² (12th)
GDP (2003)
 - per capita
540.2 billion (10th)
9000 (14th)
Major Nationalities (2000) Han - 95.6%
Tujia - 3.7%
Miao - 0.4%
Prefecture-level divisions 13
County-level divisions 102
Township-level divisions 1234
ISO 3166-2 CN-42

Hubei (Template:Zh-cpw; Postal System Pinyin: Hupeh) is a central province of the People's Republic of China. Its abbreviation is 鄂 (pinyin: ), an ancient name associated with the eastern part of the province since the Qin Dynasty. The name Hubei means "north of the lake", referring to Hubei's position north of Dongting Lake.

Hubei borders Henan to the north, Anhui to the east, Jiangxi to the southeast, Hunan to the south, Chongqing to the west, and Shaanxi to the northwest. The high-profile Three Gorges Dam is located in Yichang, in western Hubei.

A popular unofficial name for Hubei is Chu (Template:Zh-cp), after the powerful state of Chu that existed here during the Eastern Zhou Dynasty.

Contents

History

By the Spring and Autumn Period {770 BC - 476 BC), Hubei was home to the powerful state of Chu. Chu was nominally a tributary state of the Zhou Dynasty, and it was itself an extension of the Chinese civilization that had emerged some centuries before in the north; but it was also culturally unique, and was a powerful state that held onto much of the middle and lower Yangtze River, with power extending northwards into the North China Plain.

During the Warring States Period (475 BC - 221 BC) Chu became the major adversary of the upstart state of Qin to the northwest (in what is now Shaanxi province), which began to assert itself by outward expansionism. As wars between Qin and Chu ensued, Chu lost more and more land: first its dominance over the Sichuan Basin, then (in 278 BC) its heartland, which correspond to modern Hubei. In 223 BC Qin chased down the remnants of the Chu regime, which had fled eastwards, as part of Qin's bid for the conquest of all China.

Qin founded the Qin Dynasty in 221 BC, the first unified state in China. Qin was succeeded by the Han Dynasty in 206 BC, which established the province (zhou) of Jingzhou in what is now Hubei and Hunan. Near the end of the Han Dynasty in the beginning of the 3rd century, Jingzhou was ruled by regional warlord Liu Biao. After his death, Liu Biao's realm was surrendered by his successors to Cao Cao, a powerful warlord who had conquered nearly all of north China; but in the Battle of Chibi, warlords Liu Bei and Sun Quan drove Cao Cao out of Jingzhou. Liu Bei then took control of Jingzhou; he went on to conquer Yizhou (the Sichuan Basin), but lost Jingzhou to Sun Quan; for the next few decades Jingzhou was controlled by the Wu Kingdom, ruled by Sun Quan and his successors.

The incursion of northern nomadic peoples into northern China at the beginning of the 4th century began nearly three centuries of the division of China into a nomad-ruled (but increasingly Sinicized) north and a Han Chinese-ruled south. Hubei, which is in southern China, remained under southern rule for this entire period, until the reunification of China by the Sui Dynasty in 589. In 617 the Tang Dynasty replaced Sui, and later on the Tang Dynasty placed what is now Hubei under several circuits: Jiangnanxi Circuit in the south; Shannandong Circuit in the west, and Huainan Circuit in the east. After the Tang Dynasty disintegrated the 10th century, Hubei came under the control of several regional regimes: Jingnan in the center, Wu (later Southern Tang) to the east, and the Five Dynasties to the north.

The Song Dynasty reunified China in 982 and placed most of Hubei into Jinghubei Circuit, a longer version of Hubei's current name. Mongols conquered China fully in 1279, and under their rule the province of Huguang was established, covering Hubei, Hunan, and parts of Guangdong and Guangxi.

The Ming Dynasty drove out the Mongols in 1368, and their version of Huguang province was smaller, and corresponded almost entirely to the modern provinces of Hubei and Hunan combined. The Manchu Qing Dynasty which had conquered China in 1644 split Huguang into the modern provinces of Hubei and Hunan in 1664. The Qing Dynasty continued to maintain a viceroy of Huguang, however; one of the most famous was Zhang Zhidong, whose modernizing reforms made Hubei (especially Wuhan) into a prosperous center of commerce and industry.

In 1911 the Wuchang Uprising took place in modern-day Wuhan, overthrowing the Qing Dynasty and establishing the Republic of China. In 1927 Wuhan became the seat of a government established by left-wing elements of the Kuomintang, led by Wang Jingwei; this government was later merged into Chiang Kai-shek's government in Nanjing. During World War II the eastern parts of Hubei were conquered and occupied by Japan while the western parts remained under Chinese control.

The construction of the Three Gorges Dam over the Yangtze River began in 1993 near Yichang. In the following years, authorities resettled millions of people from western Hubei to make way for the construction of the dam.

Geography

The Jianghan Plain takes up most of central and eastern Hubei, while the west and the peripheries are more mountainous, with ranges such as the Wudang Mountains, the Jingshan Mountains, the Daba Mountains, and the Wushan Mountains (in rough north-to-south order). The Dabie Mountains lie to the northeast, on the border with Henan and Anhui; the Tongbai Mountains lie to the north on the border with Henan; to the southeast the Mufu Mountains form the border with Jiangxi. The eastern half of the Three Gorges (Xiling Gorge and part of Wu Gorge) lies in western Hubei; the other half is in neighbouring Chongqing. The highest peak in Hubei is Shennong Peak, found in the Daba Mountains and in the forestry area of Shennongjia; it has an altitude of 3105 m.

The Yangtze River enters Hubei from the west via the Three Gorges; the Hanshui enters from the northwest. These two rivers meet at Wuhan, the provincial capital. Thousands of lakes dot the landscape, giving Hubei the name of: "Province of Lakes"; the largest of these lakes are Lake Liangzi and Lake Honghu. The Danjiangkou Reservoir lies on the border between Hubei and Henan.

Hubei has a subtropical climate with distinct seasons. Hubei has average temperatures of 1 - 6 C in winter and of 24 - 30 C in summer; punishing temperatures of 40 C or above are famously associated with Wuhan, the provincial capital.

Administrative divisions

Hubei is divided into 13 prefecture-level divisions (of which there are 12 prefecture-level cities and 1 autonomous prefecture), as well as 3 directly administered county-level cities and 1 directly administered county-level forestry area.

The prefecture-level cities:

The autonomous prefecture:

The 3 directly administered county-level cities are more accurately described as sub-prefecture-level cities:

The county-level forestry area:

The 13 prefecture-level divisions and 4 directly administered county-level divisions of Hubei are subdivided into 102 county-level divisions (38 districts, 24 county-level cities, 37 counties, 2 autonomous counties, 1 forestry area; the directly administered county-level divisions are included here). Those are in turn divided into 1234 township-level divisions (737 towns, 215 townships, 9 ethnic townships, and 273 subdistricts).

See List of administrative divisions of Hubei for a complete list of county-level divisions.

Economy

Hubei is often called the "Land of Fish and Rice" (鱼米之乡). Important agricultural products in Hubei include cotton, rice, wheat, and tea, while industries include automobiles, metallurgy, machinery, power generation, textiles, foodstuffs and high-tech commodities.

Mineral resources that can be found in Hubei in significant quantities include borax, hongshiite, wollastonite, garnet, marlstone, iron, phosphorus, copper, gypsum, rutile, rock salt, gold amalgam, manganese and vanadium. The province's recoverable reserves of coal stand at 548 million tons, which is modest compared to other Chinese provinces.

Once completed, the Three Gorges Dam in western Hubei will provide plentiful hydroelectricity, with an estimated annual power production of 84,700 Gwh. Existing hydroelectric stations include Gezhouba, Danjiangkou, Geheyan, Hanjiang, Duhe, Huanglongtan, Bailianhe, Lushui and Fushui.

Hubei's economy ranks 10th in the country and its nominal GDP for 2003 was 540.2 billion RMB (65.2 billion USD) and a per capita of 9000 RMB (1087 USD).

Demographics

Han Chinese form the dominant ethnic group in Hubei. A considerable Miao and Tujia population live in the southwestern part of the province, especially in Enshi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture.

Culture

People in Hubei speak Mandarin dialects; most of these dialects are classified as Southwestern Mandarin dialects, a group that also encompasses the Mandarin dialects of most of southwestern China.

Perhaps the most celebrated element of Hubei cuisine is the Wuchang fish, a freshwater bream that is commonly steamed.

Types of traditional Chinese opera popular in Hubei include Hanju and Chuju.

The Shennongjia area is the alleged home of the Yeren, a wild undiscovered hominid that lives in the forested hills.

Transportation

Hubei plays an important role in China's transportation. Situated on the Yangtze and Hanshui Rivers, which are important waterways, Hubei also enjoys the convenience of railways linking Beijing to Guangzhou, Beijing to Kowloon, Shanghai to Wuhan, Wuhan to Chengdu, and Zhicheng to Liuzhou, and of the airports in Wuhan, Yichang, Sanxia, Xiangfan and Shashi. National and provincial highways also contribute to Hubei's economic development.

Tourism

Hubei is home to the ancient state of Chu, a local state during the Eastern Zhou Dynasty that developed its own unique culture. Chu (Hubei) culture mixed with other influences, ancient and modern, endows Hubei richly with tourist resources. Famous attractions include:

In 1994, the ancient building complex of the Wudang Mountains was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

Miscellaneous topics

Professional sports teams in Hubei include:

External links


Province-level divisions administered by the People's Republic of China Missing image
PRC_flag_large.png
Flag of the People's Republic of China

Provinces¹: Anhui | Fujian | Gansu | Guangdong | Guizhou | Hainan | Hebei | Heilongjiang | Henan | Hubei | Hunan | Jiangsu | Jiangxi | Jilin | Liaoning | Qinghai | Shaanxi | Shandong | Shanxi | Sichuan | Yunnan | Zhejiang
Autonomous Regions: Guangxi | Inner Mongolia | Ningxia | Tibet | Xinjiang
Municipalities: Beijing | Chongqing | Shanghai | Tianjin
Special Administrative Regions: Hong Kong | Macau
¹ See also: Political status of Taiwan
de:Hubei

fr:Hubei es:Hubei ja:湖北省 pt:Hubei fi:Hubei zh-cn:湖北

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