Early German travel reports about the ancient irrigation system in Dujiangyan, Sichuan province, China

Lecture by Prof. Albert König, Hong Kong
Date: Thursday, 13.06.2013, 18:00
Location: Technische Universität Berlin, Marchstr. 23, Room MAR 0.001

Vortrag König gesamt

The to 256 BC during the time of the Warring States Qin kingdom built irrigation system in Dujiangyan in today’s Sichuan Province is one of the most famous ancient Chinese water projects. The facility is located near the present town of Dujiangyan and irrigates the Chengdu Plain by a complex channel network. In 2000 the building was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In the west Dujiangyan is already known the latest since the end of the 19th century, when many travelers had visited the facility and published reports about travel, photographs and maps. The lecture focuses on the German travelers in the region until 1949. It begins with the probably first German visitor the Austrian Jesuit Fridelli who visited the area in 1718, when he made ​​a map of the Sichuan Kangxi atlas. Another prominent visitors was the German geologist Baron Ferdinand von Richthofen, who visited Sichuan in 1872  and published the first detailed description of the Dujiangyan irrigation system. He was followed by numerous explorers, diplomats, naturalist of German, Austrian or Swiss origin, including Count Bela Szechenyi, Arthur of Rosthorn, Frederick Betz and Ernst Boerschmann .

Albert König first completed a degree at the University of the Philippines, Los Baños, followed by an MS and PhD degree from Cornell University. Over 30 years he worked both for academia, industry and government institutions in the field of environmental engineering. Since 1992 he teaches Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Hong Kong. Since his retirement in 2009 he continued to work as a visiting professor at the University of Padua and the University of Hong Kong. He is a member of numerous local and international professional associations .

For more information see also www.china.tu -berlin.de
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