Shenzhen has a time-honored history of more than 1,600 years, and the people lived and reproduced in the area as early as Neolithic Age.
It functioned as a garrison station for the Baiyue people in the Xia (2,070 B.C. -1,600 B.C.) and the Shang Dynasty (1,600 B.C.-1,046 B.C.), who made a fishing life along the sea. Nanhai, Guilin and Xiang Prefectures were established by Emperor Qinshi in the Qin Dynasty (221 B.C.-206 B.C.), with Shenzhen as a part of Xiang Prefecture, and it was called Bao’an County in the Eastern Jin Dynasty (317 A.D.-420 A.D.).
It was the transportation hub on the Marine Silk Road in the Song Dynasty (960 A.D.-1,279 A.D.), which was abundant in salt, pearls and spices. It remained functioning as a county- Xin’an County in the Ming Dynasty (1,368- A.D.-1,644 A.D.), including the present Hong Kong and Shenzhen, which continued functioning as the economic center in south part of China during the Qing Dynasty (1,616 A.D.-1,911 A.D.). Shenzhen got its present name in 1979, and it became the first special economic zone of China in 1980.
Shenzhen covers an area of 2,020 square kms in all, among which the land area is 1,953 square kms and Shenzhen special economic zone is 327.5 square kms, and it administers 6 districts, namely, Futian District, Luohu District, Nanshan District, Yantian District, Bao’an District and Longgang District respectively, realizing regional economic integration in 2010. Shenzhen special economic zone is 49 kms from west to east and 7 kms from south to north, with Anle Village in the west, Shenzhen River in the south, Wutong Mountain and Yangtai Mountain in the north and Dapeng Bay in the east.
Shenzhen is a multi-ethnic city with 56 ethnic groups living harmoniously in the city, and the total number of people has reached as many as 14.5 million by 2010, among whom the ethnic minority people reach 0.36 million. Mandarin is widely spoken in Shenzhen (Guangdong Province) of China, and Hakka language, Chaozhou language and Cantonese are main native languages among the local people.