Historical Geography Research ›› 2021, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (1): 25-36.

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The Diversion of Puyang River and Water Conservancy Transformation of Xiao-Shao Plain in the Ming Dynasty

Chen Tao   

  1. School of History-Culture and Tourism, Gannan Normal University, Ganzhou 341000, China
  • Received:2020-06-23 Online:2021-02-20 Published:2021-02-20


The diversion of Puyang River was key to the development of Xiao-Shao plain in eastern Zhejiang. The archaeological data of the lower Puyang River and the map of Guang Yu Tu (广舆图), which was made in the Jiajing period of Ming Dynasty (1522—1566), demonstrate the basic eastward flow of the Puyang river before its diversion in the middle of Ming Dynasty. The diversion led to the transformation of water affairs in Xiao-Shao plain, re-orienting from the interior of the plain to its edge, and the content of water affairs also changed from “irrigation works” to “flood containment”. The internal reserveoir-centered conservancy system turned to the river wall, sluice, dam and other water conservancy projects so as to resist the invasion of the external rivers and the sea. This transformation also made the rivers and lakes in the Xiao-Shao plain inter-connected into a complete water conservancy system. The establishment and maintenance of the main projects such as Sanjiang Sluice, West River Wall and Maxi Dam brought the three counties of Xiaoshan, Shanyin and Kuaiji in the same plain to form the “shan-kuai-xiao” regional community with water conservancy as the core.

Key words: Puyang River, river diversion, Xiao-Shao plain, water conservancy, regional community

CLC Number: 

  • K928