Bairi Tibetan Autonomous County

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Bairi County
དཔའ་རིས་བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་རྫོང༌། · 天祝藏族自治县
Bairi Tibetan Autonomous County
Bairi County (red) within Wuwei City (yellow) and Gansu
Bairi County (red) within Wuwei City (yellow) and Gansu
Coordinates: 36°58′18″N 103°08′31″E / 36.9718°N 103.1419°E / 36.9718; 103.1419Coordinates: 36°58′18″N 103°08′31″E / 36.9718°N 103.1419°E / 36.9718; 103.1419
CountryPeople's Republic of China
Prefecture-level cityWuwei
 • Total7,149 km2 (2,760 sq mi)
Highest elevation
4,874 m (15,991 ft)
Lowest elevation
2,040 m (6,690 ft)
 • Total205,744
 • Density29/km2 (75/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+8 (China Standard)
Postal code

Bairi (Tianzhu) Tibetan Autonomous County (Tibetan: དཔའ་རིས་བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་རྫོང༌།, Wylie: dpa'a-ris bod-rigs rang-skyong rdzong/, ZYPY: Bairi Poirig Ranggyong Zong; Chinese: 天祝藏族自治县; pinyin: Tiānzhù Zàngzú Zìzhìxiàn) is in the prefecture-level city of Wuwei in the central part of Gansu province, China, bordering Qinghai province to the south and west. It has an area of 7,147 km2 (2,759 sq mi) and approximately 230,000 inhabitants (2003). Its administrative seat is the town of Huazangsi.


The Chinese name "Tianzhu" was named by a Tibetan Luo Haoxue in 1936, combining name of the largest lamasery in the County (天堂寺) and the Zhugong lamasery (祝贡寺).[1]

The Tibetan name Bairi (དཔའ་རིས།) is pronounced Bairi in Standard Tibetan, and pronounced Hwari in the local Amdo Tibetan and Huarui (华锐) in Chinese.[2]

An alternative Tibetan name is Tenzhu (ཐེན་ཀྲུའུ།), which is a transcription of the Chinese name Tianzhu.


The county was established as the Tianzhu District of Yongdeng County in 1949, but became an autonomous county of Wuwei in the next year. In 1955, Tianzhu was moved under the administration of Zhangye as the first autonomous county in China.[2] Between 1958 and 1961, Gulang County was part of Tianzhu. In 1961 the county was placed under Wuwei again.[3]

Administrative divisions[edit]

Tianzhu Tibetan Autonomous County is divided to 14 towns, 5 townships and 2 others.[3][4]

  • Huazangsi (华藏寺镇)
  • Dachaigou (打柴沟镇)
  • Anyuan (安远镇)
  • Tanshanling (炭山岭镇)
  • Haxi (哈溪镇)
  • Saishensi (赛什斯镇)
  • Shimen (石门镇)
  • Songshan (松山镇)
  • Tiantang (天堂镇)
  • Doshi (朵什镇)
  • Xidatan (西大滩镇)
  • Zhuaxixiulong (抓喜秀龙镇)
  • Dahonggou (大红沟镇)
  • Qilian (祁连镇)
  • Dongping Township(东坪乡)
  • Sailalong Township (赛拉隆乡)
  • Dongdatan Township(东大滩乡)
  • Maozang Township(毛藏乡)
  • Danma Township(旦马乡)
  • Tianzhu Building Material Factory (天祝建材厂)
  • Tianzhu Coal and Electricity Company (天祝煤电公司)


The county is mountainous, being located at the tripoint of the Tibet Plateau, the Loess Plateau and the Inner Mongolia Plateau, with elevations ranging from 2040 m to 4874 m. It is divided into the watersheds of the Shiyang River and the Yellow River and crossed by the Wushao Mountain. South of the Wushao Mountain, the climate is continental and north of it, the climate is semi-arid. The land is mostly covered by grasslands and forests.[3]


Ethnic groups in Tianzhu, 2000 census[edit]

Nationality Population Percentage
Han 139,190 62.88%
Tibetan 66,125 29.87%
Tu 12,633 5.71%
Hui 1,986 0.9%
Mongol 961 0.43%
Manchu 213 0.1%
Dongxiang 90 0.04%
Uyghur 40 0.02%
Miao 23 0.01%
Others 86 0.04%


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-02-04. Retrieved 2012-01-19.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ a b "甘肃·天祝 - 走进天祝". Retrieved 2020-12-31.
  3. ^ a b c "天祝藏族自治县". 13 July 2004.
  4. ^ "统计用区划代码" (in Chinese). XZQH. Retrieved 2020-12-27.

Further reading[edit]

  • A. Gruschke: The Cultural Monuments of Tibet’s Outer Provinces: Amdo - Volume 2. The Gansu and Sichuan Parts of Amdo, White Lotus Press, Bangkok 2001. ISBN 974-480-049-6
  • Tsering Shakya: The Dragon in the Land of Snows. A History of Modern Tibet Since 1947, London 1999, ISBN 0-14-019615-3