Zhoushan Culture

Owing to its splendid location, zhoushan has formed wonderful ocean culture.

Coming from the Stone Age

Zhoushan ocean culture has a long history, as early as 5000 years ago, the ancestors there have developed prosperously in Zhoushan islands. The unearthed pottery with rice trace in Ma’ao is the proof of that. And Japanese scholars think that Japan rice planting technology is likely to be introduced from Zhoushan. Thousands of years of breeding have created a brilliant "Island Hemudu culture". There are lots of eating utensils like Taoding, pot, ceramic cups, etc., which were found in Zhoushan Neolithic sites. Most of them have large shape, which shows that those tools do not belong to individual families. Thus, we can infer that human beings at that age were still in the stage of group living.

Living by the Sea

In the process of historical development, Zhoushan has close relationship with sea. As ocean historical and cultural heritage, Dinghai ancient town which has numerous historic sites was approved as the first batch of historical and cultural city in 1991 by Zhejiang provincial government. It is also the only historical and cultural city of island in China. If you ask the Zhoushan what one of the most characteristic of Marine culture is, it should be fishing. Fishing is main economic way of Zhoushan since ancient times, which carried the development of corresponding fishing tools, aquatic product processing and shipbuilding technology industry. Zhoushan inshore fishing practices have a long history, using common to several, drift and trawl net. Offshore fishery resources are more abundant than tidal flats, but it’s much difficult to get so that fishing tools are more complicated. From the tidal flats to offshore work, it also reflects the abilities of human’s better access to natural resources, but also embodies the Zhoushan’s hard-working and enterprising spirits.

Brilliant Fishing Folk

Zhoushan people take sea as field and island as home, which makes it the unique mode of production and way of life and gives birth to the Zhoushan unique fishing folk. All sorts of lively temple fairs were initiated there. Zhoushan temple fair is mainly “walking fair” where people sing, dance, walk, and perform when they pray to god for blessing. Ten temple worship, ten bridge walking and so on are unique temple fair customs in Zhoushan. The time for temple fair, people go along the planned route, singing and dancing, which gives full-bodied local amorous feelings. The Daohua fair in the Peach Blossom Island, for example, is a traditional temple fair there.

Offering to the Sea, the Important Sacrificial Ceremony

The life of Zhoushan people comes from the ocean; their culture is rooted in the ocean. From prosperity to the decline of marine fish resources, from the defunct canteen-adding to the changes of the motorized boats and deep-sea fishing vessels, all courses contain the contradiction of human and sea, harvest and crop failure, safety and disasters. And the original way to solve them is fete ceremony which has passed on for thousands of years by fishermen. Even today, the opening ceremony of oceanic culture, still holds an important position. The unique brand of sea sacrificing in Daishan conveys the appreciation of the island people and the concept of harmony between man and nature.