Du Pinhua

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Du Pinhua
Born 22 April 1886?
Leshan, China
Died 11 December 2006
(aged 120 years 233 days)?
Leshan, China

Du Pinhua (Chinese: 杜品华, 22 April 1886? – 11 December 2006) was a Chinese claimant to the world's oldest person title. She lived in Leshan. According to the Shanghai Great World Guinness Book of Records (unaffiliated with the similarly named Guinness World Records in London), Pinhua was proclaimed the world's oldest person in 2002. The claim disappeared for almost four years before resurfacing in April 2006, when it was claimed that Du celebrated her 120th birthday. Her age had not been internationally recognized.

Guinness in London and the Gerontology Research Group both said at the time that María Capovilla of Ecuador was the world's oldest living person. Capovilla was born on 14 September 1889, about 3½ years after Pinhua’s alleged birth date.


Du lived in a mountainous area of the Huishan village, in the district of Wutongqiao depend on the town of Leshan, area which is characterized by its picturesque landscapes and its fresh air in southwest China's Sichuan Province. The China Daily report said that she celebrated her birthday with dozens of relatives and locals. Unfortunately, Du had never been interviewed in any depth and other than her age. When she turned 116, she credited her longevity to not eating meat until she was 110 and to never arguing with others. Having lost her parents during childhood, Du Pinhua was reduced to begging then adopted by monks from a local Buddhist temple. She adored fresh fruits and vegetables, but never touched tobacco or alcohol.

In spite of her age, she made sharp spiritual remarks and possesses remarkable auditive acuteness. She astonished one journalist more than once by giving him a vigorous handshake.

In connection with Du, her neighbor Zhou Shunde, 84 years old, noticed what follows: "Tantine Du was already forty years old when I was still very small. What I then knew of her was that she was a follower of Buddhism, that she followed a mode of vegetarianism, that she was amicable, that she was never annoyed, and that she was smiling all the time."

Du died at 1:00 AM on 11 December 2006, after suffering a fall.[1] She died on the same day as Elizabeth Bolden, who was the oldest fully verified person at the time.

Oldest person title[edit]

Official Chinese sources say that before Du Pinhua “the oldest man of the world” was an American aged 115, and then a 114-year-old Japanese woman. After "confirmation", Du Pinhua was the world's "champion of longevity".

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