Jinhua, known as Wuzhou in ancient times, got its name as the "place where the Jinxing (Venus) and the Wunu (four stars in the constellation Aquarius) compete for splendor", with a history of more than 1,700 years and brilliant civilization. "Splendid is the Eight-Chant Tower ages through, leaving the posterity deep in blue; A thousand miles in South the river flows, Above the fourteen towns the City glows." 860 years ago, Li Qingzhao the famous poetess in the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) once described the verve of Jinhua with this poem when she visited the Eight-Chant Tower of the City.
- Geographical position
Jinhua is located in the center of the eastern coastal province of Zhejiang. It is connected with the three port cities, namely, Hangzhou and Shanghai in the north, and Ningbo in the east. It extends in the west to the vast inland of the western part of Zhejiang Province and Fujian, Jiangxi and Anhui Provinces. Because of its geographical position, it has become a major hub of land transportation, a vital communication line connecting the four provinces of Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangxi and Anhui, and a central city of the central and western Zhejiang.
- Area and Population
It is an important transportation hub and a key city in the middle region of Zhejiang province. It is the connection area between the inland and the coastal economically developed areas of Shanghai Economic Development Zone. The total area of Jinhua city is 10,918 square meters, mainly hilly lands and basin topography, among which 167,000 hectares is arable land, 660,000 hectares is forested, and the coverage is 57.6%. It has a total population of 4.517 million people, with 36 minority nationalities.
- Administrative Divisions
Under its jurisdiction, Jinhua has two districts, Wucheng and Jindong, four county-level cities, Yiwu, Dongyang, Yongkang, and Lanxi, and three counties: Pujiang, Wuyi and Pan'an. The municipal government is located in Wucheng District.
- Natural Environment
Jinhua has a subtropical climate with four distinctive seasons. The average annual temperature is 16°C-18°C and the average annual rainfall is 1,303-1,412 millimeters. Within its area there are intertwined basins, hills, rivers and valleys. It is rich in red soil and forest resources. The longest river Jinhua River (or Wujiang River) flows through Lanjiang River, Fuchunjiang River and Qiantang River, and reaches the Grand Canal and other coastal ports.
In its long history, a multitude of distinguished people once lived in Jinhua, and thus it attained a cultural reputation in the history, known as the "Mini Zoulu" ("Zoulu" is another name for Shandong Province, Confucius'hometown, which is believed to be the cradle of the Chinese civilization) and home to crafts, architecture, education, and doctors. A group of masters in arts and language have emerged from this place. The essays of Luo Binwang, the poems of Zhang Zhihe, the verses of Chen Liang, the calligraphy and paintings of Guan Xiu, the plays of Li Yu, the historical literature works of Wu Han, articles of Feng Xuefeng, the poems of Ai Qing, the paintings of Huang Binhong, the prose of Cao Juren, and the music of Shi Guangnan are vivid examples of the brilliant artistic and literature works. Other Jinhua celebrities included historian and social activist Hu Shi, national hero Zong Ze, medical scientist Zhu Danxi, prose writer Song Lian, poet, painter and seal cutting artist Donggaoxinyue, journalist Shao Piaoping, educator, Chinese language master and social activist Chen Wangdao, physicist Yan Jici, botanist Cai Xitao and photographer Lang Jingshan.
The local opera of Jinhua--Wu Opera--is a treasure of arts in China. It has had a history of more than 400 years and occupies a special place in the drama fields in China due to its simplicity, naturalness, straightforwardness, its special vocal music, its rich accompanying music and its martial arts performance.