Shandong province

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Shandong (in red), within the modern borders of the People's Republic of China.
  • Capital: Jinan
  • Chinese: 山東省 (Shandong sheng)

Shandong is a province in northeastern China, with its capital at Jinan. It is famous as the site of Taishan (Mt. Tai), one of the most sacred sites in Taoism, and as the birthplace of both Confucius and Mencius.

Shandong is also home to the port city of Qingdao (Tsingtao), and the sites of the initial discoveries of the Neolithic Longshan and Dawenkou cultures.[1]


Southern Shandong was long known for its endemic bandit problem, an association with spirit-possession and spiritual practices, and as a home of martial arts. As far back as the Zhou Dynasty (c. 1027-481 BCE), the State of Qi, based in Shandong, was known for its shamans and their powers of spirit-possession.

The Red Eyebrows Uprising of 18-27 CE, as well as the Yellow Turbans Rebellion of 184-205 CE (during the Han Dynasty), the Huang Chao rebellion of the Tang Dynasty, the Song Dynasty Bandit-Heroes of the famous story of the Water Margin, and the Boxer Rebellion (c. 1900) of the late Qing Dynasty were all based in Shandong.

Yuan Shikai, who became the first president of the Republic of China in 1912, had previously served as a military governor in Shandong. Following his death in 1916, however, a warlord named Zhang Zongchang ("the Dog Meat General") came to rule in the area.[2]


  • Joseph Esherick, The Origins of the Boxer Uprising, U California Press (1987), 39.
  1. James Flath, "Managing Historical Capital in Shandong: Museum, Monument, and Memory in Provincial China," The Public Historian 24:2 (2002), 42.
  2. Flath, 44.