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Zhangye History

Post Date: 2020/03/18 16:33
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Zhangye (Ganzhou) was an important city on the Silk Road where traders from many countries sold their goods. Zhangye became the garrison headquarters after General Huo established control of the Hexi Corridor. Originally known as Ganzhou, the town was part of the Western Xia dynasty until conquered by Kublai Khan in 1227. Although the city is not a tourist destination as such, it serves as good place to make stop when passing through the Hexi Corridor. Zhangye currently has a population of around 1,250,000. There are many Yugu in the city, a minority people only found in large numbers in Gansu.

Zhangye is a famous historical and cultural city in China. It is an important city along the ancient Silk Road. It is the main road of the new Eurasian Continental Bridge. It is an excellent tourist city in China. The second largest inland river in China, Heihe River, runs through the whole territory. It is a commodity grain base in Gansu Province.

The history of Zhangye can be traced back to 5000 years ago. Since ancient times, Zhangye has been a famous residential area. Surrounded by Qilianshan and Helishan. At this time the area was considered Tibetan, part of the large area of influence that the present day province struggles to remember. Even today the Tibetan influence is still here, especially a little to the south around the village of Mati.

Early Han Dynasty (206-220BC)
As early as Han Dynasty, Zhangye became the capital of many small tribes. Yueshi tribe is one of them. Since then, Zhangye was no less than the Capital City of the North-Western Regions of China, and thus it became the corner-stone and stepping-off point for the Han Dynasty Emmissaries who would help explore, found and later dominate the trading routes that would become famous in history as "The Silk Road".

Already during the succesful years of the Han Dynasty, "China's first Golden Age", Zhangye grew to bea thriving City, a center of commerce, an important administrative center and military strongpoint, and a market city for international trade. Here, at roughly halfway the length of the Hexi Corridor was where many traders from Central Asia traveled to pick up wares at the local Market, bundle them up and carry them back to the West by Caravan.

Northern Qi Dynasty
Although after the Fall of the Han Dynasty the Rule of these territories temporarily reverted to the leaders of native local Population, Zhangye would be conquered again and included in the Empire of the Northern Qi Dynasty (a part of the so called Six Dynasty Period 420 AD - 589 AD).

Zhangye - Ancient Stop Alongside China Silk Road
For centuries it is a stop-over on the busy and once more flourishing Silk Road of the Tang Dynasty (618 AD - 907 AD) and, overtime, it was included as a integral part of the Chinese Nation. A renowned traveler from this Era, known as the Monk Xuan Zang traveled from the Capital of China at Chang'An (Xi'an) through Zhangye to reach the Yumen-Jade Gate at Dunhuang where he managed to slip out of the Empire on his way to India, homeland of Sakayamuni Buddha. He returned to a Heroes welcome and is largely credited with the spread of Buddhism in China during the Tang Dynasty.

In 13 Centry
The later revival of Chinese Power during the early Ming Dynasty in which the Silk Road as well as the Great Wall defenses nearby played an important role in National Finance and Pride, left some distinct architecture specific for that era. Zhangye remained steadily inside the Chinese Empire throughout most of the following Centuries, although at the end of the Qing Dynasty (1368 AD - 1644 AD various Islamic Uprisings occurred. Thus, even today a visit to Zhangye is a visit to a distinctly Chinese City with according architecture and features, regardless of its multitude of ethnic peoples.

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