Zhejiang Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism
  • Distinguished Clan of Qiantang
  • Distinguished Clan of Qiantang
  • Distinguished Clan of Qiantang
  • Distinguished Clan of Qiantang
Distinguished Clan of Qiantang — Hong Clan Culture
Name in Chinese :钱塘望族——洪氏家族文化展
Opening Hours:No Infromation Currently
Admission Fee:No Infromation Currently
Telephone:No Infromation Currently
Address:Hongyuan scenic area, xixi national wetland park, yuhang district, hangzhou city, zhejiang province


There were usually private schools near the ancestral halls of great feudal families for their children to study for fame. Now we have transformed this village school building to “Distinguished Clan of Qiantang — Hong Clan Culture Exhibition Hall", which expounds the great achievements of Hong Clan in politics and culture with a modern view.

Hong Hao (洪皓) of the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) was sent on a diplomatic mission to Jin Dynasty (金国) and carried out military and diplomatic mediation, showing a lofty spirit of patriotism. In the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), Hong Zhong (洪钟) and his descendants successively served as ministers of the imperial court, and made great achievements in politics and military affairs; Other clan members made remarkable achievements in many academic fields including the New History, epigraphy, numismatics, and classical novels featuring ghosts, which are still difficult for future generations to surpass.

The Hong Clan is said to stem from Gonggong (共工) in ancient times. Gonggong, surnamed Jiang (姜), was the descendant of Yan Emperor (炎帝). He lived in Huixian County, Henan Province (河南辉县), and later was known as the god of water. About in the Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220), the descendants were relocated in Dunhuang (敦煌) to avoid the enemy and changed their surname to Hong. Later, descendants increased rapidly in number and different branches were formed with many living the southeastern part of China.

In the Tang Dynasty, Hong Clan immigrated to Xuyi (盱眙), which now is under the jurisdiction of Jiangsu, Huizhou (徽州) , Poyang (鄱阳) in Jiangxi Province and other areas. This picture shows the current geographical location of Xuyi; and here is the geographical map of Poyang. When it comes to immigrating to Poyang, there is a little story.

Hong Shiliang (洪士良)’s ancestors had cultivated mulberry and relied on farming for a living for generations. To the time of Hong Shiliang, he was very ambitious and was devoted to making a fortune. He determined to go into business without quitting farming. At that time, Poyang City was very prosperous with ship masts erecting like forests, merchants seen everywhere and over ten thousand illuminated houses seen on a 5000-meter-long street. However, given the family situation of Hong Shiliang, he couldn’t move directly to Poyang City, so he chose Wenggang Village (翁港村) on the edge of Changjiang (昌江), which was 20 kilometers away from Poyang City, as his new habitation. Back in the time, Wenggang Village was the habitation of the Lei Clan, so it was not an easy task to buy land and build a house there. The Lei Clan of Wenggang Village is the descendants of Lei Huan (雷焕), the county magistrate of Fengcheng County of the Ji Dynasty. They have lived in the Wenggang Village for many generations, and normally they wouldn’t sell the ancestral land to others. Hong Shiliang carefully planned. He firstly built a good relationship with the head of the Lei Clan and then tried to buy land in the name of building a granary, but was opposed by an elder in the Lei Clan. Upon acquaintance, Hong Shiliang discovered that the elder of Lei Clan was henpecked, so he prepared lavish gifts for the wife of the elder. After several twists and turns, he finally got the land. He started by building a granary on the land, and then gradually changed it to a grange, achieving the purpose of buying a land to build houses and finally relocating his family in Wenggang Village, which initiated his pursuit of going into business.

In the Southern Song Dynasty, Hong Hao made meritorious deeds, and he was appointed as Zhongxuan Master of Wei, and given the residence in Geling Peak of Hangzhou and the land in Xixi, which was viewed as the beginning of Hong Clan of Qiantang. Hong Hao had three sons, all of whom served high-ranking officials and the Distinguished Clan of Qiantang was formed. According to the epitaph by the Wang Shouren (王守仁) of the Ming Dynasty, “Since Emperor Taizu of the Song bestowed Hong Hao the title ‘Master of Zhong Xuan’ and the residence in Geling Peak of the West Lake, Qiantang, his three sons succeeded his fame and virtues, which contributed to the formation of the Distinguished Clan of Qiantang.

In the Yuan Dynasty, the Hong Clan of Hangzhou was relocated to Shangyu of Zhejiang (浙江上虞). 

In the early Ming Dynasty and late Yuan Dynasty, Hong Clan moved back to Xixi, Qiantang. The person initiated the relocation was originally called “Wuchang (武昌)”, and later was granted the name “Youheng (有恒)” by the Emperor Taizu of the Ming. He was later known as “Xixi First Ancestor” by the later generations. Currently, there are over 500 descendants of Hong Clan of Xixi living in Wuchang Area (五常). 

The story of the Emperor Taizu of the Ming granting Wuchang the name of “Youheng”: Hong Youheng (洪有恒), art name Yun Xuan (芸轩), was originally named Hong Wuchang. He got arrested for having the same word “wu (武)” in his name as the name of the emperor’s reign, Hongwu of the Ming (明洪武), which was viewed as offensive in ancient China. When Emperor Taizu of the Ming asked him about how he got the name. He answered that his name originated from the phrase “以武昌盛天下 (make the country prosperous through the military)”. Hearing this, Emperor Taizu of the Ming exonerated him and granted him a new name “Youheng”. In addition, Emperor Taizu of the Ming offered to make him an official of the imperial college, but he declined the offer and retired from the word in Xixi to study Neo-Confucianism.

The Hong Clan prospered in the Southern Song Dynasty and reached its heyday during the Ming and Qing dynasties. In the clan, talents came forth in large numbers and there emerged great masters in every generation in Chinese history. The Hong Clan strongly emphasized “loyalty” and “people-oriented thinking.” Loyalty to the country and its people and the people-oriented thinking are the fundamental ideas of Hong Clan for generations. The Hong Clan had adhered to “people-oriented” thinking, and they believed that the people were the foundation of the country. The people can stabilize the country. Members of Hong Clan were righteous and not afraid of power, and dared to give emperors frank admonition. Their integrity was very touching. Most members of the Hong Clan were high-ranking officials, conscientious, dedicated, diligent, and with remarkable achievements, and were known as the able people helping the rulers to rule the country. In the history of Chinese literature, the Hong Clan also held an important position.

Recommended Touring Time: 40 minutes