[Cheng-chou ; Chengchow]
Capital of Henan Province, China. Archaeological excavations since 1950 in the drainage basin of the south bank of the Yellow River have produced evidence that this was a centre of Shang culture (c. 1600–1050 bc ).
The area has been identified by some archaeologists with the second Shang capital, Ao, which according to the ancient annals (e.g. Liu Xin’s San Tong li pu (a calendar) and the Zhushu jinian (Bamboo Annals)) was founded by the Shang ruler Zhongding (regc. 1568– c.1558 bc), but on the basis of archaeological evidence is generally dated to the 15th century bc. Around 1300 bc it seems the capital was transferred to Yin, near modern Anyang (see 1968 exh. cat.). Findings support the hypothesis that for some time Zhengzhou and Anyang may have been occupied contemporaneously. During the Zhou period (c. 1050–256 bc ) the area was first called Guyang and then known as Dantu. While serving as the capital of the state of Wu during the Three Kingdoms period (...