A deeper look at the History of Guangzhou

Posted by North South Travel · Oct 09 · in Guangzhou, China · about Culture & History

Nestled on the ever graceful Pearl River, the city of Guangzhou has always been a busy commercial hub. Today, it is the capital of the Guangdong province, People's Republic of China. Perhaps due to the over 40 million people that occupy the built-up area that is today called Pearl River Delta Mega City; the city was identified as a Beta World City by the global city index produced by the GaWC, the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. But the city has not always been as big or as busy. Below is a small chronology of how the city came to be.

1. 206 BC - The city's history arises from a humble background but during the Qin Dynasty, the city will see a huge change due to the conquering ways of the Kingdom. It was part of the Nanyue Kingdom which includes the present day Vietnam.

2. 111BC - The Han Dynasty annexed the Nanyue Dynasty and made Panyue (Guangzhou) its capital. The city remains the capital of this region to date.

3. 878 - The followers of a rebel leader known as Huang Chao besieged Guangzhou and massacred foreign traders that included Arab Muslims, Persians, Jews and Christians.

4. 10th - 12th century - The area surrounding Guangzhou would see an influx of foreigners including Persian and Arab leaders.

5. 1514 - Portuguese were the first Europeans in the area. They would monopolize the foreign trade until the arrival of the Dutch in the 17th century.

6. 17th - 19th centuries - In the year 1683, China gained control of Taiwan and this would see the port of Guangzhou become the most preferred point of exit for international traders and merchants.

7. 1717 - The Ostend General India Company arrived followed by Dutch East India Company in 1729. As fate would have it, this would be the beginning of foreign companies dominating trade in Guangzhou.

8. March 18, 1841 - The British fought and captured the city of Guangzhou during the second battle of Second Battle of Canton.

9. 1894 - The third Pandemic reached the city of Guangzhou and killed over 60,000 people in a very short period. In i918, the name Panyu was replaced with the name Guangzhou and the city recognized as the official capital

10 1930 to present day - This period will be characterized with rapid growth which include bombings by the Japanese as well as attacks by communists.

Today, Guangzhou is one of the biggest trading and manufacturing centers and contributes a large percentage of the Chinese economy. It has an international airport and it is accessible from all the world's large airports. It is a place you would love to visit during your Chinese tour.

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