Haining began to be inhabited as early as the New Stone Age some 6,000 years ago. During the Spring and Autumn period (770-476BC), it became part of the State of the Wu and then belonged to the State of the Yue before coming under the State of the Chu. In 221BC, during the Qin Dynasty, it fell under the jurisdiction of Changshui County (present-day Jiaxing). In 223AD, or the second year of the reign of Wu State King Huangwu of the Three Kingdoms period, it became known as Yanguan County. In 1295, or the first year of the reign of Yuan Emperor Yuanzheng, the county was promoted to be Yuanguan Prefecture. It became Haining Prefecture in 558. As the sea often invaded the prefecture via the Qiantangjiang River, the area was renamed Haining Prefecture in 1329 in the hope of calming the waves (in Chinese, “hai” means sea and “ning” calming down), and it remains so today. Following the founding the PRC, the area became Haining County, which was turned into Haining City in November 1986 with the approval of the State Council.
Haining was developed in education even in the ancient times, so that it had nurtured many celebrities. It is famous for its tidal waves and teems with many places of historical interest. It boasts “three major cultures”—“tidal wave culture”, “celebrities culture” and “lantern culture”.
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