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Hunan (, ; ) is a landlocked
province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are g ...
of the People's Republic of
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , with a of more than 1.4 billion. China spans five geographical and 14 different countries, the in the world after . Covering an area of ap ...

China
, part of the
South Central China South Central China ( zh, c = 中南, p = Zhōngnán, l = Central-South) is a region In geography, regions are areas that are broadly divided by physical characteristics ( physical geography), human impact characteristics ( human geography), ...

South Central China
region. Located in the middle reaches of the
Yangtze The Yangtze or Yangzi ( or ) is the longest , the in the world and the longest in the world to flow entirely within one country. It rises at Jari Hill in the (Tibetan Plateau) and flows in a generally easterly direction to the . It is ...
watershed, it borders the province-level divisions of
Hubei Hubei (; ; Hupeh) is a landlocked of the , and is part of the region. The name of the province means "north of the lake", referring to its position north of . The provincial capital, , serves as a major transportation hub and the political ...

Hubei
to the north,
Jiangxi Jiangxi (; ; alternately romanized as Kiangsi or Chianghsi, Gan Chinese Gan, Gann or Kan is a group of Sinitic languages spoken first language, natively by many people in the Jiangxi province of China, as well as significant populations in ...

Jiangxi
to the east,
Guangdong Guangdong (, ), alternately romanized as Canton Province or Kwangtung, is a coastal province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, admin ...

Guangdong
and
Guangxi Guangxi (; alternately romanized as Kwanghsi; ; za, Gvangjsih), officially the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region (GZAR), is an autonomous region An autonomous administrative division (also referred to as an autonomous area, entity, uni ...

Guangxi
to the south,
Guizhou Guizhou (; alternately Kweichow) is a landlocked province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational enti ...

Guizhou
to the west and
Chongqing Chongqing ( ; ; Sichuanese pronunciation: , Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandarin t ...

Chongqing
to the northwest. Its capital and largest city is
Changsha Changsha (; ; ; Changshanese pronunciation: (), Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandar ...

Changsha
, which also abuts the Xiang River. With a population of just over 67 million residing in an area of approximately , it is China's 7th most populous province and the 10th most extensive province by area. Its 2020
nominal GDP Gross domestic product (GDP) is a monetary In a 1786 James Gillray caricature, the plentiful money bags handed to King George III are contrasted with the beggar whose legs and arms were amputated, in the left corner">174x174px Money is ...
was more than US$600 billion, appearing in the top 30 largest sub-national economies in the world with its PPP GDP being over US$1 trillion. The name ''Hunan'' literally means "south of the lake". The lake that is referred to is
Dongting Lake Dongting Lake () is a large, shallow lake A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a Depression (geology), basin, surrounded by land, and set apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie o ...
, a lake in the northeast of the province; Vehicle license plates from Hunan are marked (), after the
Xiang River The Xiang River is the chief river of the Lake Dongting drainage system of the middle Yangtze The Yangtze or Yangzi ( or ) is the longest , the in the world and the longest in the world to flow entirely within one country. It rises ...
, which runs from south to north through Hunan and forms part of the largest drainage system for the province. The area of Hunan first came under Chinese rule around 350 BC, when the province became part of the
State of Chu Chu (, Hanyu Pinyin ''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman ( ...
. Hunan was the birthplace of communist revolutionary
Mao Zedong Mao Zedong pronounced ; also Romanization of Chinese, romanised traditionally as Mao Tse-tung. (December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976), also known as Chairman Mao, was a Chinese communist revolutionary who was the Proclamation of the ...

Mao Zedong
, who became the
founding father The following list of national founding figures is a record, by country, of people who were credited with establishing a state. National founders are typically those who played an influential role in setting up the systems of governance, (i.e. ...

founding father
of the
People's Republic of China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

People's Republic of China
. Hunan today is home to some ethnic minorities, including the Tujia and
MiaoMiao may refer to: * Miao people, linguistically and culturally related group of people, recognized as such by the government of the People's Republic of China * Miao script or Pollard script, writing system used for Miao languages * Miao (Unicode b ...
, along with the
Han Chinese The Han Chinese (), or the Han people (), is an East Asian East Asia is the east East is one of the four cardinal direction The four cardinal directions, or cardinal points, are the directions north North is one of the four ...
, who make up a majority of the population. Varieties of Chinese spoken include Xiang,
Gan Gallium nitride () is a binary III/ V direct bandgap semiconductor A semiconductor material has an Electrical resistivity and conductivity, electrical conductivity value falling between that of a Electrical conductor, conductor, such as metal ...
and
Southwestern Mandarin Southwestern Mandarin (), also known as Upper Yangtze Mandarin (), is a Mandarin Chinese language spoken in much of Southwest China, including in Sichuan, Yunnan Yunnan () is a landlocked Provinces of China, province in Southwest China, the ...
. Hunan is located on the south bank of the
Yangtze The Yangtze or Yangzi ( or ) is the longest , the in the world and the longest in the world to flow entirely within one country. It rises at Jari Hill in the (Tibetan Plateau) and flows in a generally easterly direction to the . It is ...
River. The site of
Wulingyuan Wulingyuan (, zh, c=武陵源) is a scenic and historical site in the Wulingyuan District of South Central China South Central China ( zh, c = 中南, p = Zhōngnán, l = Central-South) is a region In geography, regions are areas that a ...

Wulingyuan
was inscribed as a
UNESCO The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) (french: Organisation des Nations unies pour l'éducation, la science et la culture) is a specialised agency United Nations Specialized Agencies are autonomous orga ...

UNESCO
World Heritage Site A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area with legal protection by an international convention administered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). World Heritage Sites are designated by UNESCO for h ...
in 1992.
Changsha Changsha (; ; ; Changshanese pronunciation: (), Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandar ...

Changsha
, the capital, is located in the eastern part of the province; it is now an important commercial, manufacturing and transportation centre.


History

Hunan's primeval forests were first occupied by the ancestors of the modern
MiaoMiao may refer to: * Miao people, linguistically and culturally related group of people, recognized as such by the government of the People's Republic of China * Miao script or Pollard script, writing system used for Miao languages * Miao (Unicode b ...
, Tujia,
Dong Dong or DONG may refer to: Places * Dong Lake, or East Lake, a lake in China * Dong, Arunachal Pradesh, a village in India * Dong (administrative division) Dong or DONG may refer to: Places * Dong Lake, or East Lake, a lake in China * Dong, ...
and
Yao people The Yao people (its majority branch is also known as Mien; ; vi, người Dao) is a government classification for various minorities in China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the L ...
s. The province entered written
Chinese history The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty The Shang dynasty (), also historically known as the Yin dynasty (), was a Chinese dynasty that ruled in the middle and ...

Chinese history
around 350 BC, when under the kings of the
Zhou dynasty The Zhou dynasty ( ; Old Chinese Old Chinese, also called Archaic Chinese in older works, is the oldest attested stage of Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China ( ...
, the province became part of the
State of Chu Chu (, Hanyu Pinyin ''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman ( ...
. After
QinQin may refer to: Dynasties and states * Qin (state) (秦), a major state during the Zhou Dynasty of ancient China * Qin dynasty (秦), founded by the Qin state in 221 BC and ended in 206 BC * Daqin (大秦), ancient Chinese name for the Roman Empi ...
conquered the Chu heartland in 278 BC, the region came under the control of Qin, and then the
Changsha Kingdom The Changsha Kingdom was a kingdom within the Han Empire of China, located in present-day Hunan Hunan () is a landlocked province A province is almost always an administrative division within a country or state. The term derives from t ...
during the
Han dynasty#REDIRECT Han dynasty The Han dynasty () was the second Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China (202 BC – 220 AD), established by the rebel leader Liu Bang and ruled by the House of Liu. Preceded by the short-lived Qin dynas ...

Han dynasty
. At this time, and for hundreds of years thereafter, the province was a magnet for settlement of
Han Chinese The Han Chinese (), or the Han people (), is an East Asian East Asia is the east East is one of the four cardinal direction The four cardinal directions, or cardinal points, are the directions north North is one of the four ...
from the north, who displaced and assimilated the original indigenous inhabitants, cleared forests and began farming rice in the valleys and plains. The agricultural colonization of the lowlands was carried out in part by the Han empire, which managed river dikes to protect farmland from floods. To this day many of the small villages in Hunan are named after the Han families who settled there. Migration from the north was especially prevalent during the
Eastern Jin dynasty Eastern may refer to: Transportation *China Eastern Airlines China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited (), also known as China Eastern, is an airline An airline is a company that provides air transport services for traveling passenge ...
and the
Northern and Southern dynasties The Northern and Southern dynasties () was a period in the history of China The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty (c. 1600–1046 BC), during the king Wu Ding ...
periods, when nomadic invaders pushed these peoples south. During the
Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period The Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period (), from 907 to 979 was an era of political upheaval and division in 10th-century history of China, Imperial China. Five states quickly succeeded one another in the Central Plain (China), Central Plain ...
, Hunan was home to its own independent regime,
Ma Chu Chu (), often referred to as Ma Chu () or Southern Chu () to distinguish it from other historical states called Chu, was a kingdom in south China South China () is a geographical and cultural region that covers the southernmost part of China ...
. Hunan and
Hubei Hubei (; ; Hupeh) is a landlocked of the , and is part of the region. The name of the province means "north of the lake", referring to its position north of . The provincial capital, , serves as a major transportation hub and the political ...

Hubei
became a part of the province of
Huguang Huguang was a province A province is almost always an administrative division within a country or state. The term derives from the ancient Roman '' provincia'', which was the major territorial and administrative unit of the Roman Empire's terri ...
until the
Qing dynasty The Qing dynasty, officially the Great Qing (), was the last dynasty A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rulers from the same family,''Oxford English Dictionary'', "dynasty, ''n''." Oxford University Press Oxford University Pr ...
. Hunan province was created in 1664 from Huguang, renamed to its current name in 1723. Hunan became an important communications center due to its position on the
Yangzi River along the Yangtze River. in Hubei Hubei (; ; alternately Hupeh) is a landlocked province A province is almost always an administrative division within a country or state. The term derives from the ancient Roman '' provincia'', w ...
. It was an important centre of scholarly activity and
Confucian , Shanxi Shanxi (; ; Chinese postal romanization, formerly romanised as Shansi) is a landlocked Provinces of China, province of the China, People's Republic of China and is part of the North China region. The capital and largest city of th ...

Confucian
thought, particularly in the
Yuelu Academy The Yuelu Academy (also as known as the ''Yuelu Academy of Classical Learning'', ) is on the east side of Yuelu Mountain in Changsha Changsha is the capital and most populous city of Hunan, Hunan Province in the South Central China, south ...
in
Changsha Changsha (; ; ; Changshanese pronunciation: (), Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandar ...

Changsha
. It was also on the Imperial Highway constructed between northern and southern China. The land produced grain so abundantly that it fed many parts of China with its surpluses. The population continued to climb until, by the nineteenth century, Hunan became overcrowded and prone to peasant uprisings. Some of the uprisings, such as the ten-year Miao Rebellion of 1795–1806, were caused by ethnic tensions. The
Taiping Rebellion The Taiping Rebellion, also known as the Taiping Civil War or the Taiping Revolution, was a massive rebellion Rebellion, uprising, or insurrection is a refusal of obedience or order. It refers to the open resistance against the orders of an ...
began in the south in
Guangxi Guangxi (; alternately romanized as Kwanghsi; ; za, Gvangjsih), officially the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region (GZAR), is an autonomous region An autonomous administrative division (also referred to as an autonomous area, entity, uni ...

Guangxi
Province in 1850. The rebellion spread into Hunan and then further eastward along the Yangzi River valley. Ultimately, it was a Hunanese army under
Zeng Guofan Zeng Guofan, Marquis Yiyong (; 26 November 1811 – 12 March 1872), birth name Zeng Zicheng, courtesy name A courtesy name (), also known as a style name, is a name bestowed upon one at adulthood in addition to one's given name. This p ...

Zeng Guofan
who marched into
Nanjing Nanjing (; , Mandarin pronunciation: ), Postal Map Romanization, alternately romanized as Nanking, is the capital of Jiangsu Provinces of China, province of the China, People's Republic of China, a sub-provincial city, a megacity and the List ...

Nanjing
to put down the uprising in 1864. In 1920, a famine raged throughout Hunan and killed an estimated 2 million Hunanese civilians. This sparked the
Autumn Harvest Uprising The Autumn Harvest Uprising () was an insurrection Rebellion, uprising, or insurrection is a refusal of obedience or order. It refers to the open resistance against the orders of an established authority In the fields of sociology Soc ...
of 1927. It was led by Hunanese native
Mao Zedong Mao Zedong pronounced ; also Romanization of Chinese, romanised traditionally as Mao Tse-tung. (December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976), also known as Chairman Mao, was a Chinese communist revolutionary who was the Proclamation of the ...

Mao Zedong
, and established a short-lived Hunan Soviet in 1927. The Communists maintained a guerrilla army in the mountains along the Hunan-
Jiangxi Jiangxi (; ; alternately romanized as Kiangsi or Chianghsi, Gan Chinese Gan, Gann or Kan is a group of Sinitic languages spoken first language, natively by many people in the Jiangxi province of China, as well as significant populations in ...

Jiangxi
border until 1934. Under pressure from the Nationalist
Kuomintang The Kuomintang (KMT), also referred to as the Guomindang (GMD) or the Chinese Nationalist Party, is a political party in the Taiwan, Republic of China, initially Republic of China (1912–1949), on the Mainland China, Chinese mainland and ...
(KMT) forces, they began the
Long March The Long March (, lit. ''Long Expedition'') was a military retreat undertaken by the Chinese Red Army, Red Army of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the forerunner of the People's Liberation Army, to evade the pursuit of the Kuomintang army. ...
to bases in
Shaanxi Shaanxi (; , ; Chinese postal romanization, alternately Shensi) is a landlocked Provinces of China, province of the China, People's Republic of China. Officially part of Northwest China, it borders the province-level divisions of Shanxi (NE, ...

Shaanxi
Province. After the departure of the Communists, the KMT army fought against the Japanese in the
second Sino-Japanese war The Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945) was a military conflict that was primarily waged between the Republic of China (1912–1949), Republic of China and the Empire of Japan. The war made up the Chinese theater of the wider Pacific War, Pac ...
. They defended Changsha until it fell in 1944. Japan launched Operation Ichigo, a plan to control the railroad from
Wuchang Wuchang forms part of the urban core of and is one of 13 urban districts A district is a type of administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational e ...
to
Guangzhou Guangzhou (, ; ; or ; ), also known as Canton and alternatively romanized as Kwongchow or Kwangchow, is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the ...

Guangzhou
( Yuehan Railway). Hunan was relatively unscathed by the civil war that followed the defeat of the Japanese in 1945. In 1949, the Communists returned once more as the Nationalists retreated southward. In the 1950s General Wang Zhen coerced thousands of Hunanese women into sexual servitude at PLA units in Xinjiang. As Mao Zedong's home province, Hunan supported the
Cultural Revolution The Cultural Revolution, formally known as the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, was a sociopolitical movement Movement may refer to: Common uses * Movement (clockwork), the internal mechanism of a timepiece * Motion (physics), co ...
of 1966–1976. However, it was slower than most provinces in adopting the reforms implemented by
Deng Xiaoping Deng Xiaoping (22 August 1904 – 19 February 1997), also known by his courtesy name A courtesy name (), also known as a style name, is a name bestowed upon one at adulthood in addition to one's given name. This practice is a tradition in ...

Deng Xiaoping
in the years that followed Mao's death in 1976. In addition to
Mao Zedong Mao Zedong pronounced ; also Romanization of Chinese, romanised traditionally as Mao Tse-tung. (December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976), also known as Chairman Mao, was a Chinese communist revolutionary who was the Proclamation of the ...

Mao Zedong
, a number of other first-generation communist leaders were also from Hunan:
President President most commonly refers to: *President (corporate title) A president is a leader of an organization, company, community, club, trade union, university or other group. The relationship between a president and a Chief Executive Officer, chi ...
Liu Shaoqi Liu Shaoqi ( ; 24 November 189812 November 1969) was a Chinese revolutionary, politician, and theorist. He was Chairman of the NPC Standing Committee from 1954 to 1959, Vice Chairman of the Chinese Communist Party, First Vice Chairman of the Chin ...

Liu Shaoqi
; Secretary-generals
Ren Bishi Ren Bishi (; 30 April 1904 – 27 October 1950) was a military and political leader in the early Chinese Communist Party The Communist Party of China (CPC), commonly known as the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), is the founding and One-pa ...

Ren Bishi
and
Hu Yaobang Hu Yaobang (; 20 November 1915 – 15 April 1989) was a high-ranking official of the People's Republic of China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia. It is the world's List of countries ...

Hu Yaobang
; Marshals
Peng Dehuai Peng Dehuai (; October 24, 1898November 29, 1974) was a prominent Chinese Communist military leader, who served as China's Defense Minister from 1954 to 1959. Peng was born into a poor peasant family, and received several years of primary edu ...

Peng Dehuai
,
He Long He Long (; March 22, 1896 – June 9, 1969) was a Chinese Communist revolutionary and one of the of the . He was from a poor rural family in Hunan, and his family was not able to provide him with any formal education. He began his revolutionary ...

He Long
, and
Luo Ronghuan Luo Ronghuan (; November 26, 1902 – December 16, 1963) was a Chinese Communist Party of China, communist military leader. He served as a Vice Chairperson of the National People's Congress, Vice Chair of the Standing Committee of the National ...

Luo Ronghuan
; Wang Zhen, one of the
Eight Elders The Eight Great Eminent Officials (), abbreviated as the Eight Elders (), were a group of elderly members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) who held substantial power in the last two decades of the 20th century. In the English-speaking world, th ...
; Xiang Jingyu, the first female member of the party's central committee; Senior General
Huang Kecheng Huang Kecheng () (October 1, 1902 – December 28, 1986) was a senior general (大将) in the People's Liberation Army The People's Liberation Army (PLA) is the armed forces A military, also known collectively as armed for ...

Huang Kecheng
; and veteran diplomat
Lin Boqu Lin Boqu (; Pinyin ''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Chinese, Standard Mandarin Chinese in mainland China, Taiwan (ROC), and Singapore. It is often used to teach Standard ...

Lin Boqu
. An example of a more recent leader from Hunan is former Premier
Zhu Rongji Zhu Rongji (; : ; born 23 October 1928) is a retired Chinese politician who served as from 1998 to 2003 along with China's . In his capacity as and Premier, Zhu was regarded as the leading figure behind in 1990s and early 2000s. He also serve ...

Zhu Rongji
.


Geography

Hunan is located on the south bank of the
Yangtze River The Yangtze or Yangzi ( or ) is the longest river in Asia, the third-longest in the world and the longest in the world to flow entirely within one country. It rises at Jari Hill in the Tanggula Mountains The Tanggula ( Chinese:  ...
, about half way along its length, situated between 108° 47'–114° 16' east
longitude Longitude (, ) is a geographic coordinate A geographic coordinate system (GCS) is a coordinate system associated with position (geometry), positions on Earth (geographic position). A GCS can give positions: *as Geodetic coordinates, ...

longitude
and 24° 37'–30° 08' north
latitude In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of the Earth and planets. The first person to use the ...

latitude
. Hunan covers an area of , making it the 10th largest provincial-level division. The east, south and west sides of the province are surrounded by mountains and hills, such as the
Wuling Mountains The Wuling Mountains () are a mountain range located in Central China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, world's most populous coun ...
to the northwest, the
Xuefeng Mountains The Xuefeng Mountains () are a mountain range of China in western Hunan province. The Xuefeng Mountains lie in the heart of Hunan. They are an extension of the highlands in the province's west, which run northeast to southwest and form the eastern ...
to the west, the
Nanling Mountains The Nanling (), also known as the Wuling (), is a major mountain range in Southern China Northern China () and Southern China () are two approximate mega-regions within China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC) ...
to the south, and the
Luoxiao Mountains The Luoxiao Mountains () are a system of mountain ranges in the People's Republic of China that straddle Jiangxi, Hubei, and Hunan provinces. Subranges Among other smaller ranges, the Luoxiao Mountains include the following subranges: *Wugong Mount ...
to the east. Mountains and hills occupy more than 80% of the province, and plains less than 20%. At 2115.2 meters above sea level, the highest point in Hunan province is Lingfeng (). The Xiang, the Zi, the Yuan and the
Lishui Lishui () is a prefecture-level city in the southwest of Zhejiang province, People's Republic of China. It borders Quzhou, Jinhua and Taizhou, Zhejiang, Taizhou to the north, Wenzhou to the southeast, and the province of Fujian to the southwest. ...
Rivers converge on the Yangtze River at
Lake Dongting Dongting Lake () is a large, shallow lake A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a Depression (geology), basin, surrounded by land, and set apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie ...
in the north of Hunan. The center and northern parts are somewhat low and a U-shaped basin, open in the north and with Lake Dongting as its center. Most of Hunan lies in the basins of four major tributaries of the Yangtze River.
Lake Dongting Dongting Lake () is a large, shallow lake A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a Depression (geology), basin, surrounded by land, and set apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie ...
is the largest lake in the province and the second largest freshwater lake of China. The
Xiaoxiang Xiaoxiang (), also transliterated ''XiaoXiang'', ''Hsiao Hsiang'', and ''Chiu Chiang'', in some older sources, refers to the "lakes and rivers" region in south-central China south of the middle-reaches of the Yangtze River The Yangtze or Y ...
area and Lake Dongting figure prominently in Chinese poetry and paintings, particularly during the Song dynasty when they were associated with officials who had been unjustly dismissed. Changsha (which means "long sands") was an active ceramics district during the
Tang dynasty The Tang dynasty (, ; ), or Tang Empire, was an imperial dynasty of China that ruled from 618 to 907, with an interregnum An interregnum (plural interregna or interregnums) is a period of discontinuity or "gap" in a government, organiza ...
, its tea bowls, ewers and other products mass-produced and shipped to China's coastal cities for export abroad. An Arab dhow dated to the 830s and today known as the
Belitung Shipwreck The Belitung shipwreck (also called the Tang shipwreck or Batu Hitam shipwreck) is the wreck of an Arabian dhow Dhow ( ar, داو, translit=dāwa, mr, script=Latn, dāw) is the generic name of a number of traditional sailing vessels with one o ...
was discovered off the small island of Belitung, Indonesia with more than 60,000 pieces in its cargo. The salvaged cargo is today housed in nearby Singapore. Hunan's climate is
subtropical The subtropical zones or subtropics are geographical zone, geographical and Köppen climate classification, climate zones located to the north and south of the tropics, Torrid Zone. Geographically part of the Geographical zone#Temperate zones, ...

subtropical
, and, under the
Köppen climate classification The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification Climate classification is a way of categorizing the world's s. A climate classification may correlate closely with a category, as climate is a major infl ...
, is classified as being
humid subtropical A humid subtropical climate is a zone of climate characterized by hot and humid summers, and cold to mild winters. These climates normally lie on the southeast side of all continents, generally between latitudes 25° and 40° (sometimes 45°) a ...
(Köppen ''Cfa''), with short, cool, damp winters, very hot and humid summers, and plenty of rainfall. January temperatures average while July temperatures average around . Average annual precipitation is . The
Furongian The Furongian is the fourth and final epoch and series of the Cambrian The Cambrian Period ( ; sometimes symbolized C with bar, Ꞓ) was the first geological period of the Paleozoic Era, and of the Phanerozoic Eon. The Cambrian lasted 55.6 mi ...
Epoch in the
Cambrian The Cambrian Period ( ; sometimes symbolized Ꞓ) was the first geological period A geological period is one of the several subdivisions of geologic time enabling cross-referencing of rocks and geologic events from place to place. These peri ...
Period of geological time is named for Hunan; Furong () means "
lotus Lotus may refer to: Plants *Lotus (plant), various botanical taxa commonly known as lotus **Lotus (genus), ''Lotus'' (genus), a genus of terrestrial plants in the family Fabaceae **Lotus flower, a symbolically important aquatic Asian plant also k ...
" in Mandarin and refers to Hunan which is known as the "lotus state".


Administrative divisions

Hunan is divided into fourteen prefecture-level divisions: thirteen
prefecture-level cities A road sign shows distance to the "Huangshi urban area" () rather than simply " Yangxin County from the neighboring Xianning), but still from the Huangshi main urban area. A prefectural-level municipality (), prefectural-level city or prefectu ...
and an
autonomous prefecture Autonomous prefectures () are one type of autonomous administrative divisions of China, existing at the Administrative divisions of China#Prefectural level (2nd), prefectural level, with either list of ethnic groups in China and Taiwan, ethnic m ...
: The fourteen
prefecture A prefecture (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of t ...
-level divisions of Hunan are subdivided into 122
county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first published by William Chambers (publisher), William and Robert Chambers (publisher bo ...
-level divisions (35
district A district is a type of administrative division that, in some countries, is managed by the local government. Across the world, areas known as "districts" vary greatly in size, spanning regions or County, counties, several Municipality, municipal ...
s, 17
county-level cities A county-level municipality (), county-level city or county city, formerly known as prefecture-controlled city (1949–1970: ; 1970–1983: ), is a county-level administrative division of the People's Republic of China China ...
, 63 counties, 7 autonomous counties). Those are in turn divided into 2587 Townships of the People's Republic of China, township-level divisions (1098 town of China, towns, 1158 Townships of the People's Republic of China, townships, 98 ethnic townships, 225 Subdistricts of China, subdistricts, and eight district public offices). At the year end of 2017, the total population is 68.6 millio


Urban areas


Politics

The politics of Hunan is structured in a dual party-government system like all other governing institutions in mainland China. The Governor of Hunan is the highest-ranking official in the People's Government of Hunan. However, in the province's dual party-government governing system, the Governor has less power than the Hunan Communist Party of China Provincial Committee Secretary, colloquially termed the "Hunan CPC Party Chief".


Economy

As of the mid 19th century, Hunan exported rhubarb, musk, honey, tobacco, hemp, and birds. The
Lake Dongting Dongting Lake () is a large, shallow lake A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a Depression (geology), basin, surrounded by land, and set apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie ...
area is an important center of ramie production, and Hunan is also an important center of tea cultivation. Aside from agricultural products, in recent years Hunan has grown to become an important center for steel, machinery and electronics production, especially as China's manufacturing sector moves away from coastal provinces such as
Guangdong Guangdong (, ), alternately romanized as Canton Province or Kwangtung, is a coastal province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, admin ...

Guangdong
and Zhejiang. The Lengshuijiang area is noted for its stibnite mines, and is one of the major centers of antimony extraction in China. Hunan is also well known for a few global makers of construction equipment such as concrete pumps, crane (machine), cranes, etc. These companies include Sany Group, Zoomlion and Sunward Intelligent Equipment, Sunward. Sany is one of the world's major players. The city of Liuyang is the world's top center for manufacturing fireworks. As of 2016, its nominal GDP was US$475 billion (CNY 3.16 trillion), the per capita GDP was US$6,983 (CNY 46,382).


Economic and technological development zones

*
Changsha Changsha (; ; ; Changshanese pronunciation: (), Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandar ...

Changsha
National Economic and Technical Development Zone The Changsha National Economic and Technology Development Zone was founded in 1992. It is located east of Changsha. The total planned area is and the current area is . Near the zone is National Highways G319 and G107 as well as Jingzhu Highway. Besides that, it is very close to the downtown and the railway station. The distance between the zone and the airport is . The major industries in the zone include high-tech industry, biology project technology and new material industry. * Changsha National New & Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone * Chenzhou Export Processing Zone Approved by the State Council, Chenzhou Export processing Zone (CEPZ) was established in 2005 and is the only export processing zone in Hunan province. The scheduled production area of CEPZ covers 3km2. The industrial positioning of CEPZ is to concentrate on developing export-oriented hi-tech industries, including electronic information, precision machinery, and new-type materials. The zone has good infrastructure, and the enterprises inside could enjoy the preferential policies of tax-exemption, tax-guarantee and tax-refunding. By the end of the "Eleventh Five-Year Plan (People's Republic of China), Eleventh Five-Year Plan", the CEPZ achieved a total export and import volume of over US$1 billion and provided more than 50,000 jobs. It aimed to be one of the first-class export processing zones in China. * Zhuzhou National New & Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone Zhuzhou Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone was founded in 1992. Its total planned area is . It is very close to National Highway G320. The major industries in the zone include biotechnology, food processing and heavy industry. In 2007, the park signed a cooperation contract with Beijing Automobile Industry, one of the largest auto makers in China, which will set up a manufacturing base in Zhuzhou HTP.


Demographics

As of the 2000 census, the population of Hunan is 64,400,700 consisting of forty-one List of Chinese ethnic groups, ethnic groups. Its population grew 6.17% (3,742,700) from its 1990 levels. According to the census, 89.79% (57,540,000) identified themselves as
Han Chinese The Han Chinese (), or the Han people (), is an East Asian East Asia is the east East is one of the four cardinal direction The four cardinal directions, or cardinal points, are the directions north North is one of the four ...
and 10.21% (6,575,300) as minority groups. The minority groups are Tujia, Hmong people, Miao,
Dong Dong or DONG may refer to: Places * Dong Lake, or East Lake, a lake in China * Dong, Arunachal Pradesh, a village in India * Dong (administrative division) Dong or DONG may refer to: Places * Dong Lake, or East Lake, a lake in China * Dong, ...
, Yao people, Yao, Bai people, Bai, Hui people, Hui, Zhuang people, Zhuang, Uyghur people, Uyghurs and so on. In Hunan, ethnic minority languages are spoken in the following prefectures. *Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture: Qo Xiong language, Tujia language *Huaihua: Qo Xiong language, Dong language (China), Dong language, Hm Nai language, Hmu language *Shaoyang: Maojia dialect, Maojia language, Hm Nai language, Pa-Hng language *Yongzhou: Iu Mien language, Mien language, Biao Min language *Chenzhou: Dzao Min language


Hunanese Uyghurs

Around 5,000 Uyghurs live around Taoyuan County, Hunan, Taoyuan County and other parts of Changde. Hui people, Hui and Uyghurs have intermarried in this area. In addition to eating pork, the Uygurs of Changde practice other Han Chinese customs, like ancestor worship at graves. Some Uyghurs from Xinjiang visit the Hunan Uyghurs out of curiosity or interest. The Uyghurs of Hunan do not speak the Uyghur language, instead, Chinese is spoken as their native language.


Religion

The predominant religions in Hunan are Chinese Buddhism, Taoism, Taoist traditions and Chinese folk religions. According to surveys conducted in 2007 and 2009, 20.19% of the population believes and is involved in Chinese ancestral religion, ancestor veneration, while 0.77% of the population identifies as Christian. The reports didn't give figures for other types of religion; 79.04% of the population may be either irreligious or involved in Chinese folk religion, worship of nature deities, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Chinese salvationist religions, folk religious sects. In 2010, there are 118.799 muslims in Hunan File:Puguang chansi 0152.jpg, Puguang Buddhist Temple in Zhangjiajie. File:Confucius Temple of Liuyang 01.jpg, Temple of Confucius in Liuyang. File:Hunan traditional temple front.jpg, An ancestral shrine in the province. Notable people: *
Zeng Guofan Zeng Guofan, Marquis Yiyong (; 26 November 1811 – 12 March 1872), birth name Zeng Zicheng, courtesy name A courtesy name (), also known as a style name, is a name bestowed upon one at adulthood in addition to one's given name. This p ...

Zeng Guofan
(1811–1872) * Cai E (1882–1916), Chinese revolutionary leader, General and Governor of Yunnan (1911-1913) *
Mao Zedong Mao Zedong pronounced ; also Romanization of Chinese, romanised traditionally as Mao Tse-tung. (December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976), also known as Chairman Mao, was a Chinese communist revolutionary who was the Proclamation of the ...

Mao Zedong
(1893–1976) * Ma Ying-jeou (born 1950) * Yuet-ching Lee (1918–1997), Hong Kong actress * Ted Hui (born 1982), Hong Kong politician


Culture

Hunan's culture industry generated 87 billion yuan (US$11.76 billion) in economic value in 2007, and is major contributor to the province's economic growth. The industry accounts for 7.5 percent of the region's GDP.


Language

Xiang Chinese () is the eponymous variety of Chinese spoken in Hunan. In addition to Xiang Chinese, there are also other dialects and languages present, such as
Southwestern Mandarin Southwestern Mandarin (), also known as Upper Yangtze Mandarin (), is a Mandarin Chinese language spoken in much of Southwest China, including in Sichuan, Yunnan Yunnan () is a landlocked Provinces of China, province in Southwest China, the ...
, Hakka Chinese, Hakka, Waxiang Chinese, Waxiang, and Xiangnan Tuhua. Nü shu, a writing system for Xiangnan Tuhua, is used exclusively among women in Jiangyong County and neighboring areas in southern Hunan.


Cuisine

Hunan cuisine, Hunanese cuisine is noted for its near-ubiquitous use of chili peppers, garlic, and shallots. These ingredients give rise to a distinctive dry-and-spicy () taste, with dishes such as smoked cured ham, and stir-fried spicy beef being prime examples of the flavor.


Music

Huaguxi is a local form of Chinese opera that is very popular in Hunan province.


Tourism

Located in the south central part of the Chinese mainland, Hunan has long been known for its natural environment. It is surrounded by mountains on the east, west, and south, and by the Yangtze River on the north. For thousands of years, the region has been a major center of agriculture, growing rice, tea, and oranges. China's first all glass suspension bridge was also opened in Hunan, in Shiniuzhai National Geological Park. *
Wulingyuan Wulingyuan (, zh, c=武陵源) is a scenic and historical site in the Wulingyuan District of South Central China South Central China ( zh, c = 中南, p = Zhōngnán, l = Central-South) is a region In geography, regions are areas that a ...

Wulingyuan
is a
World Heritage Site A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area with legal protection by an international convention administered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). World Heritage Sites are designated by UNESCO for h ...
and a AAAAA Tourist Attractions of China, 5A Scenic Area. Located in south-central Hunan, Wulingyuan is noted for its thousands of quartzite sandstone pillars, caves, and waterfalls. The area also contains Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. * Shaoshan, Shaoshan County, known for being the Mao Zedong's Former Residence, birthplace of Mao Zedong * Yueyang Tower, on the shores of
Lake Dongting Dongting Lake () is a large, shallow lake A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a Depression (geology), basin, surrounded by land, and set apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie ...
, was built in the Han dynasty, Han and Jin dynasty (265–420), Jin dynasties, and has existed in its current state since the Qing dynasty, Qing Dynasty. Alongside the Pavilion of Prince Teng and Yellow Crane Tower, it is one of the Three Great Towers of Jiangnan. * Mount Heng (Hunan), Mount Heng, in Hengyang, is one of the Sacred Mountains of China, Five Great Mountains of China, and is home to the Grand Temple of Mount Heng, largest temple in southern China. * Fenghuang County, in Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, Xiangxi Prefecture, has been placed on the
UNESCO The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) (french: Organisation des Nations unies pour l'éducation, la science et la culture) is a specialised agency United Nations Specialized Agencies are autonomous orga ...

UNESCO
World Heritage Tentative List for its ancient town. Fenghuang is known for its incorporation of mountain features and water flow into city design, and the ancient syncretism between the local Han Chinese, Han and
MiaoMiao may refer to: * Miao people, linguistically and culturally related group of people, recognized as such by the government of the People's Republic of China * Miao script or Pollard script, writing system used for Miao languages * Miao (Unicode b ...
cultures.


Education


Sports

Professional sports teams in Hunan include: * China League One, Chinese Football Association League One ** Hunan Billows F.C.


See also

*Major national historical and cultural sites (Hunan), Major national historical and cultural sites in Hunan *
Xiaoxiang Xiaoxiang (), also transliterated ''XiaoXiang'', ''Hsiao Hsiang'', and ''Chiu Chiang'', in some older sources, refers to the "lakes and rivers" region in south-central China south of the middle-reaches of the Yangtze River The Yangtze or Y ...
, the "lakes and rivers" region of south-central China *
State of Chu Chu (, Hanyu Pinyin ''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman ( ...
, ancient Chinese state partly in modern-day Hunan


Notes


References


External links

*
Hunan Government website
*

at Hong Kong Trade Development Council, HKTDC
History of Hunanese
, the first book on the history of Hunanese(Phoelanese) civilization and nation from the perspective of we the hunanese (phoelanese) people. {{Authority control Hunan, Central China, . Provinces of the People's Republic of China