Xiangshan County, Guangdong

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Hsiang-shan County (Chinese: 香山縣, Wade-Giles: Hsiang-shan Hsien, Pinyin: Xiāngshān Xiàn; literally "Fragrant Mountain"; also spelt Siang-shan) was a county in southern China. Since 1912, it was a county in Kwangtung Province, in the Republic of China. It was renamed Chung-shan County (中山縣) in April 1925, in memory of the founder of the Republic of China, Sun Yat Sen.

The county covered the modern-day Zhuhai City and Zhongshan City in the Guangdong Province of the People's Republic of China (PRC), and the Macau Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China.


The county consists of the entirety of Xiangshan Island (香山島), an island in a bay where three rivers emptied into the sea, part of the Pearl River Delta. It was originally separated from the continent by the distributaries in the delta, until it became a peninsula some time during the 17th century, but was still separated from the mainland by waterways.

Around the 8th century (during the Tang Dynasty), a Xiangshan Township (香山鎮) was carved out of the Bao'an County and Dongguan County, at the present-day Shanchang (山场) of Zhuhai. Around the 12th century (during the Northern Song Dynasty), this township became a separate county.

During the mid-16th century, in the Ming Dynasty, the Portuguese settled in Macau. This was permitted by the Ming dynasty, but despite the Portuguese presence, Macau was still under the jurisdiction of Xiangshan.[1]) Macau became a full Portuguese colony in 1847. This colony later expanded to include Ilha Verde, Taipa and Coloane.

In December 1952, Yu-min County (漁民縣) was created out of islands from Hsiang-shan County, Bao-an County and Tung-kuan County. This county was renamed Chu-hai County (珠海縣) in April 1953, and was expanded. Chu-hai County was briefly merged with Hsiang-shan County in March 1959, and was recreated in April 1961.

From 1961 onwards, the territory of Chung-shan County was reduced by 43%, with areas ceded to the counties of Tou-men, Pan-yu, Shun-te and Hsin-huei. Its romanised spelling was changed to Zhuhai following the introduction of the Pinyin orthography to romanised Chinese characters.

In 1979, Zhuhai County (珠海县) became Zhuhai City (珠海市). In December 1983, Zhongshan County (中山县) became Zhongshan City (中山市). Originally a county-level city, Zhongshan was elevated to prefecture level in January 1988.

A 6.81-square kilometre special economic zone was established within Zhuhai City in August 1980. The special economic zone was expanded to 15.16 square kilometres in June 1983, and 121 square kilometres in April 1989. In May 1983, Doumen County (斗門县) became administratively under Zhuhai City.

In December 1999, Macau was handed over by the Portugal to the People's Republic of China, as agreed in the Sino-Portuguese Joint Declaration in 1988. The Macau Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China was established.


  1. ^ Matteo Ricci and Nicolas Trigault, De Christiana expeditione apud Sinas. Page 140 in the English translation: Gallagher (1953). "China in the Sixteenth Century: The Journals of Matteo Ricci", Random House, New York, 1953. English translation of Trigault's Latin by Louis J. Gallagher. Ricci's transcription for "Xiangshan" is Hiam-Xan.

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