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The provinces of Guangdong and Guangxi, c. 1900. Note that a western part of Guangdong south of Guangxi in this map has since been given to Guangxi to give it access to the sea by the People's Republic of China in 1952 and 1965, although it is not recognized by the Republic of China.

Liangguang (Chinese: t 兩廣, s 两广, p Liǎngguǎng, lit. "The Two Expanses"; Cantonese: y Loeng-gwong; Hakka: poj Lióng-kńg), formerly known as Liangkwang, is a Chinese term for the province of Guangdong ("Eastern Expanse") and former province and present autonomous region of Guangxi ("Western Expanse") taken collectively. It particularly refers to the viceroyalty of Liangguang under the Qing dynasty, when the territory was considered to include Hainan and the leased territories of British Hong Kong, French Kouang-Tchéou-Wan, and Portuguese Macao. The Viceroy of Liangguang existed from 1735 to 1911.


The area has been considered the southern expanse of China since the creation of Guang Prefecture (Guangzhou) in AD 226. Prior to that, the area was known as the Nanhai Commandery.

Guangxi autonomy[edit]

In the 1920s and 1930s, the areas of Guangxi province dominated by Zhuang people greatly aided the Communist Party of China in the Chinese Civil War.[1] Soon after the Communist victory in 1949, in 1952 the People's Republic of China created a Zhuang autonomous prefecture in the western half of Guangxi province. In 1958, the entire province was redesignated an autonomous region for the Zhuang.[2] However, most Western scholars of the Zhuang do not believe that this decision came out of genuine grassroots demands from that ethnic group,[3] who made up only 33% of the province's population and were thoroughly assimilated with the Han Chinese,[2][4] which is contradictory to reality of facts from Chinese scholars that the Zhuang people clearly maintain their distinct culture and lifestyle (i.e. language, religion, etc.).[5][6] Scholars like George Moseley and Diana Lary instead argue that the conversion of Guangxi to a Zhuang autonomous region was designed to foil local Han Chinese sentiment against the Communist Party, as well as to smash pan-Lingnan sentiment from the Cantonese people.[3] Shortly afterward many Cantonese in the Guangxi government were replaced by Zhuangs, and in 1952 Guangxi annexed the Nanlu region of Guangdong, giving the formerly landlocked region access to the sea.[3]

Hainan separation[edit]

In 1988, the island of Hainan was separated from Guangdong province and established as a separate province.

Leased territories[edit]

Hong Kong[edit]

Hong Kong was leased to the British Empire in 1841 until the transfer of sovereignty in 1997 and converted into a special administrative region.


Kouang-Tchéou-Wan also known as Zhanjiang was leased to the French Republic in 1898 until the end of World War II in 1946.


Macau was granted to the Portuguese Empire in 1557 until the transfer of sovereignty in 1999 and converted into a special administrative region.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Olson, James Stuart (1998). "Zhuang". An Ethnohistorical Dictionary of China. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 393. 
  2. ^ a b Hutchings, Graham (2003). "Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region". Modern China: A Guide to a Century of Change. Harvard University Press. p. 173. 
  3. ^ a b c Kaup, Katherine Palmer (2000). Creating the Zhuang: Ethnic Politics in China. Lynne Reinner Publishers. p. 52. 
  4. ^ Ramsey, Samuel Robert (1987). "Minority Languages of China". The Languages of China. Princeton University Press. pp. 234–235. 
  5. ^ Li, Xulian; Huang, Quanxi (2004). "The Introduction and Development of the Zhuang Writing System". In Zhou, Minglang; Sun, Hongkai. Language Policy in the People's Republic of China: Theory and Practice Since 1949. Springer. p. 240. 
  6. ^ Cen Xianan (2003). On research to Zhuang's Mo Religion Belief. "Economic and Social Development",no.12. p.23-26.(Chinese)