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Page history last edited by PBworks 16 years, 9 months ago




    Korla (simplified Chinese: 库尔勒; traditional Chinese: 庫爾勒; pinyin: Kù'ěrlè) is a mid-sized city in central Xinjiang. Korla is the capital of the Bayin'gholin Mongol Autonomous Prefecture, which is larger than France and is the largest prefecture in China.


    The city name is occasionally spelled Kurla in English.





Location of Korla:

    Korla is about 200 km southwest as the crow flies from Urumqi (Wulumuqi) to Korla, although by road the trip is more than 500 km. Coordinates: 41°39′″N, 86°08′″E


    The Iron Gate Pass (Tiemenguan) leading to Yanqi (Karashahr) is about 7 km (4 miles) north of the city and, as it was easily defended, played an important part in protecting the ancient Silk Roads from raiding nomads from the north.


    The Kongque River flows through the center of Korla, a unique feature amongst cities in Xinjiang. Often mistranslated as "Peacock River", the Chinese word "kongque" is actually a transliteration of the Uyghur word "konqi", meaning "an abundance of water".







    Korla has long been the biggest centre in the region after Karashahr itself, having abundant water and extensive farmlands, as well as controlling the main routes to the south and west of Karashahr. Due to the discovery of oil in the Taklamakan Desert, Korla is now both more populous and far more developed than Karashar. Korla is home to a huge operational center for PetroChina's exploration in Xinjiang.


    Korla is known for its production of fragrant pears - 庫爾勒香梨 which are well known in the region for their sweetness and flavor.






    The city had 381,943 inhabitants in 2004, of whom the majority were Han Chinese, with a large minority of Uyghurs and smaller numbers of Mongols and Huis.








    Korla was known as Weili during the Han Dynasty. Weili is said in the Hanshu or 'History of the Former Han' (covering the period 125 BCE to 23 CE), to have had 1,200 households, 9,600 individuals and 2,000 people able to bear arms. It also mentions that it adjoined Shanshan and Qiemo (Charchan) to the south.



In 61 CE, the Xiongnu led some 30,000 troops from 15 kingdoms including Korla, Karashahr, and Kucha in a successful attack on Khotan.


In 94 CE, the Chinese general Ban Chao sent soldiers to punish the kingdoms of Yanqi (Karashahr), Weixu (Hoxud), Weili (Korla), and Shanguo (in the western Kuruk mountains).



    "He then sent the heads of the two kings of Yanqi (Karashahr) and Weili (Korla) to the capital where they were hung in front of the residences of the Man and Yi princes in the capital (Luoyang). (Ban) Chao then appointed Yuan Meng, who was the Yanqi (Karashahr) Marquis of the Left, king (of Kashgar). The kings of Weili (Korla), Weixu (Hoxud), and Shanguo (in the western Kuruk mountains) were all replaced."



After the rebellion of the "Western Regions" (106-125 CE), only the kings of Korla and Hoxud refused to submit to the Chinese. Ban Yong, the son of Ban Chao, along with the Governor of Dunhuang attacked and defeated them.



The 3rd century Weilue records that Korla, Hoxud and Shanwang (= Shanguo) were all dependencies of Karashahr.

In May, 1877 Yakub Beg, the Muslim ruler of Kashgaria, died here, prompting the reconquest of Eastern Turkestan by the Manchu dynasty.


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