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The Sketch of Cicheng

Cicheng sits on the coast of East China Sea and the bank of River Yao. It has won the title of both“National Historic & Cultural City” and “National Town with Fine Environment”. According to The Records of the Historians, in the 3rd year of Zhou Emperor Yuan’s reign (473 A.C.), the town was established by Gou Jian, the emperor of State Yue; thus it was named “Gouyu”. This was actually the earliest name of Cicheng. It was renamed as “Gouzhang” later on. In the 26th year of Kaiyuan in the Tang Dynasty, Cixi County was established and hence its county town was named Cicheng. Over the past 2400 years, Cicheng has deposited profound cultural heritages; among them are the County Government, Confucian Temple, County Examination House, Qing Taoist Temple, Town God’s Temple, The Residence of Jiadi and Fuqing. Inside the town, there are numerous well-preserved residential houses, ancestral halls, memorial archways, school yards, windows and walls. Within an area of approximately 5 square kilometers, 33 cultural relics are under prefectural, municipal, provincial or National Conservation. In the year 2006, “Cicheng Ancient Architectures” has been listed among the Cultural Relics under National Conservation. Apart from historical profoundness, Cicheng is also abundant in talents. Scholars and celebrities over the past dynasties emerge in endlessly. From the Tang to the Qing Dynasty, this district nourished 519 imperial scholars. That is why Cicheng was reputed as the saying goes:“Out of the imperial examinations, champions come forth once in a while and top-three winners appear in large numbers, while provincial certified scholars march shoulders after shoulders and certified students crowd the town.” The latter-day Cicheng also boasted a large number of famous scholars, including Zhou Xinfang, Qin Runqing, Ying Changqi, Tan Jiazhen, and Feng Jicai.

The cultural value of Cicheng is embodied through not only its centuries-old humanistic history, but also its fine and unique natural environment which nurtures great talents. The mountains and lakes in Cicheng County form a delightful contrast: Mountain Wulei and Taizong embosom the town while River Yao and the Moat glide through its center. The town is constructed on the layout of a double-chessboard and streets are configured in the pattern of a tortoise’s shell. With excellent eco-environment, the town reflects ancient people’s longing for a living environment which embraces their philosophical outlook of “the integration of man and heaven” and “the greatness of a man lends glory to a place”.

Cicheng — the premier Ancient County Town in South China, is a place for you to witness the shifts of history and to taste the elegance of Confucian ethos.