Bodies and Structures 2.0: Deep-Mapping Modern East Asian HistoryMain MenuGet to Know the SiteGuided TourShow Me HowA click-by-click guide to using this siteModulesRead the seventeen spatial stories that make up Bodies and Structures 2.0Tag MapExplore conceptsComplete Grid VisualizationDiscover connectionsGeotagged MapFind materials by geographic locationLensesCreate your own visualizationsWhat We LearnedLearn how multivocal spatial history changed how we approach our researchAboutFind information about contributors and advisory board members, citing this site, image permissions and licensing, and site documentationTroubleshootingA guide to known issuesAcknowledgmentsThank youDavid Ambaras1337d6b66b25164b57abc529e56445d238145277Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5fThis project was made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Map of Yongjia County (Kangxi)
12019-11-18T17:25:09-05:00Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5f3513"Map of Yongjia County"; in Zhong Chong 鍾翀, Wenzhou gujiu dituji 溫州古舊地圖集 [A Collection of Old Maps of Wenzhou] (Shanghai : Shanghai shudian chubanshe, 2014), 64.plain2021-08-12T11:25:29-04:001685Zhong Chong 鍾翀, Wenzhou gujiu dituji 溫州古舊地圖集 [A Collection of Old Maps of Wenzhou] (Shanghai : Shanghai shudian chubanshe, 2014), 64.Zhong ChongUsed with permission.Weiting GuoWG-0010Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5f
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12019-11-18T17:25:08-05:00The Main Waterways15plain2021-09-29T12:54:51-04:0027.9994, 120.6668Wenzhou28.15372, 120.69192YongjiaWeiting GuoOu RiverFeiyun RiverAo River
Surrounded by numerous mountains, Wenzhou had long been isolated from the prosperous regions in the Lower Yangtze. Yet, it was also connected with other places through rivers and seas, especially the three major rivers that flow in an easterly direction to the ocean: the Ou River, Feiyun River, and Ao River.
The largest river—the Ou River—flows along the top of this region. Its beautiful name, “Bowl River,” originated because “Ou” was used to refer to the clay pot made by its ancient people. It is also called the “Wenzhou River” since “Ou” has commonly been used as an interchangeable term for Wenzhou. The river stretches across a vast region of northern Wenzhou. It connects the city with neighboring city Lishui, through Daxi Brook. Its major branch, the Nanxi River, merges into the main waterway around the intersection of several prosperous regions as well as the cultural-political centers of Wenzhou Prefecture and Yongjia County.
The second largest river—the Feiyun River—passes through the southern part of the city. This river flows by the major regions of Rui'an and Pingyang. The ferry across this river also connects Wenzhou with the southern provinces, especially Fujian.
Down in the south is the Ao River, which connects the towns in Pingyang and Cangnan. Merchants from the south usually took land routes to come to these counties, and then travelled the water routes to the northern regions.
All these rivers are critically important to Wenzhou's transportation. Goods were shipped through the rivers and the sea. People also relied heavily on water routes to connect them with the outside world, including some nearby cities such as Lishui, Hangzhou, and Shanghai. While these rivers had largely monopolized the connection between the city and the ocean, they also played an important role in terms of maritime defense. Armies and communities had built their defense facilities along the rivers, as invading forces usually took these routes to control strategic ports and regions.