History of Shanghai

Origin of "Hu" and "Shen"

Shanghai is called in Chinese“Hu”for short and“Shen”as a nickname. About 6,000 years ago, the western part of today’s Shanghai dried up into land and its eastern part became a piece of land about 2,000 years ago. During the Spring-Autumn and Warring States Periods (770-221 BC), this area was once the feoff of Huang Xie, the Chun Shen Governor of the State of Chu. So,“Shen”comes from the title of the governor. During the Jin Dynasty (4th-5th centuries), fishermen living along the Songjiang River (today’s Suzhou Creek) and the coast of the East China Sea created a fishing tool called“Hu”. By combining the name of the fishing tool and the then term for estuary of big rivers, they coined a Chinese character“Hu”to name the place as it sits at the mouth of the Yangtze River, the longest river in China.