Mottled bricks and tiles, quaint old streets, and dialects with the lingering traces of the Central Plains... This is Quanzhou, the starting point of the “Maritime Silk Road” and the “largest port in the East” in the Song and Yuan dynasties (the 10th - 14th centuries AD). Located in east China's Fujian Province, the coastal city has a history of more than 1,700 years.
UNESCO accepted "Quanzhou: Emporium of the World in Song-Yuan China" , China’s only application, as a cultural property on its World Heritage List amid the ongoing 44th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Fujian’s capital city of Fuzhou. The newly inscribed cultural property brought the total number of the country's UNESCO World Heritage sites to 56.
“The largest port in the East” in the 10th - 14th centuries AD
During the Song and Yuan dynasties, the overseas trade of Quanzhou entered the most prosperous period, with close trade with nearly 100 countries. At that time, Chinese silk, porcelain, tea, Quanzhou minerals, fish salt, spices and others were sold from Quanzhou to the rest of the world, enabling exchanges with Southeast Asia, East Asia and even the West. The application comprises 22 historical relics including stone carvings that pray for the smooth sailing of merchant ships, administrative agencies that manage maritime trade affairs, docks and lighthouses. These sites help restore the bustling scenes of the land and water transportation network at that time.
“The museum of the world’s religions” for diverse communities
When Zhu Xi, a famous thinker of the Southern Song Dynasty, visited Quanzhou, he couldn’t help but express his admiration for the city’s rich cultural deposits in a verse, “This holy land of Buddhism is full of sages and saints.” Quanzhou was not only a land rich in Buddhism at that time. It has been a religious melting pot where different religions including Buddhism, Taoism, Islam and Manichaeism meet, merge and co-exist, echoing the cultural inclusiveness of an open, diverse and dynamic global emporium.
A paradise for the private sector
The business gene inherited from the history of Quanzhou has evolved into a continuously improving business environment to nourish the people of Quanzhou today. Known as a paradise for the private sector, Quanzhou is home to many famous Chinese brands such as sportswear giant Anta and Dali Foods Group.
Over a thousand of years later, Quanzhou is still a living ancient city. The addition to the World Heritage list is not the end for heritage protection, but the starting point towards a new era.
監 制：戴 凡
編 導：劉璟 吳婧 白玥 孫磊 高志偉 佟明月