Officially named The People’s Republic of China, it is a country with such rich culture and tradition as China is sure to be the source of much fascinating trivia.
Know for many natural and man made wonders alike, beautiful art and design, as well as the home of many discoveries and innovations, a peak into Chinese history always proves to be educational.
Here we’ll take a look at 10 interesting facts about China that we bet you never knew.
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10. Oldest Civilization
China is considered by historians to have the longest sustained civilizations, being traced back to 6000 B.C. Along with that, the Chinese language is the oldest of any written language. Pretty remarkable, when you think about how entire civilizations have come and gone during this time period, yet China still remains and flourishes.
This made China a fitting spot for the 2008 Olympic Games. Beijing, specifically, hosted the games that were recorded as the most expensive Olympics Games in history at a cost exceeding $38 billion.
9. World’s Most Populated Country
Many people think of China and a massive population comes to mind, but how many realize that China accounts for a full 20% of the world’s population? In fact, the Chinese population is more than four times the size of the U.S. population and continues to grow despite China having a single child policy that has created an uneven balance of men and women. There are roughly 30 million more males than females in China and this triggers concerns about future population growth and sustainability. (Yes, finding a date to the dance is much more challenging for the guys in China!)
8. Discovery of Blood Circulation
Would you believe that the Chinese discovered how human blood circulated the body and was pumped by the heart back during the second century B.C.? Pretty amazing as this was long before all of the advances and conveniences of modern medicine.
Compare that to Western civilization, where it was discovered until the 1600′s in Europe and you might agree that the Chinese made some advanced discoveries in ancient times.
The Chinese have some traditions that are much different from Western culture. Those include the color red being symbolic of happiness for the Chinese. It is used as a traditional color for holidays, birthdays and other celebrations. Consider this meaning now when you see Chinese decorations and parades and you’ll see the joy of the Chinese people. However, the red Chinese flag is said to represent the revolution when the People’s Republic was formed in 1949.
Also, while Westerners may think of bats as a spooky, nocturnal Halloween favorite, the Chinese consider bats as symbol of good luck and can often be found in pottery, designs and other arts and crafts, creating good luck for those who decorate with bats.
Another differing perception between East and West to go along in this category is the dragon. Westerners usually see the dragon in an evil role, yet in China the dragon holds a place as one of the four greatest creatures from a mythological sense. The dragon is also often seen together with the emperor, so surely it is indicative of power and prestige.
6. Largest Bicycle Manufacturer
As such a populous country, China is often depicted as a country with many using bicycles for transportation, yet interestingly enough bicycles were introduced to China at the end of the 19th Century by American travelers.
The bicycle was a big hit and is now the number one mode of transportation in the country and China is the largest bicycle manufacturer in the world.
We already know that China is big, but did you know that from an economic perspective it’s growing at an unparalleled pace? Chinese gross domestic product is on track to eclipse the U.S. GDP by the next decade. And while China accounts for 20% of the world population, their economy will account for nearly 70% of the world’s GDP when they surpass the United States.
4. Blogging is big in China
Shifting to the tech side of things, the Chinese are prolific bloggers, as Internet users in China are more than four times as are likely to have a blog than users in the United States.
All this blogging going on, even though the Internet in China is policed by Chinese army of more than 27,000.
China’s famous landscape is made up of about 65% mountains, rolling hills and plateaus. It is here in these regions of dynamic terrain where nearly all of China’s forests can be found.
Another element of the Chinese landscape is the Yangtze and Yellow Rivers, which are the longest rivers in China at 3,493 and 2,900 miles, respectively.
2. More Christians in China than Italy
Another fact that can be traced back to the sheer massiveness of the Chinese population is the fact that Chinese is home to more Christians than in Italy. While the home of the Pope has nearly 60 million people, with almost 80% of them being Christian, China’s population of Christians is estimated at 54 million. The majority of those are Protestant, secondarily Catholics. The growth of Christianity is another area where China is poised to become the global center of the most Christians in the near future.
1. Fourth Largest Country by Area
Lastly, to cap off this list of 10 interesting facts about China, we’ll cover more about sheer size, namely land mass. Not only is China the most populated country in the world, but it is the fourth largest, behind only Russia, Canada and the United States.
And while one in every five people on the planet are from China, there are about 5,000 islands that can be found off the coast of China. It’s a good thing that the Chinese people rank travel as their favorite national hobby!
That wraps up our 10 Interesting Facts About China You Probably Didn’t Know (but now you do.)
We found this to be an enlightening piece to research and write, as the Chinese culture is rooted deeply in tradition and rich history.