Capital of Liaoning province, China; population (2010) 6,255,900. It is the region's main trading city, and one of China's principal metal-fabricating and machine-building centres. It was the capital of the Manchu emperors from 1625 to 1644; their tombs are nearby.
History Originally known as Shen, from the 10th to the 12th century it was a flourishing Mongol trading centre. It was renamed Fengtien by the Chinese, who controlled it from 1368 to 1625. As capital of the Manchus from 1625 to 1644, it was known as Mukden and Shenking. Russian interests in the late 19th century promoted Shenyang's development as a modern industrial city. It was taken by the Japanese in the Battle of Mukden (20 February–10 March 1905). The city temporarily regained its ancient Chinese name of Shenyang after the Chinese Revolution in 1911, when it became the seat of the Manchurian warlords. It was retaken by the Japanese in 1931 in a surprise attack known as the Mukden Incident, which triggered the Japanese invasion of Manchuria and the subsequent founding of the Japanese-controlled state of Manchukuo (1932–45). After the communist government established the People's Republic of China in 1949, Shenyang was declared the capital of the Northeast Administrative Region (1949–54). The city's crumbling industrial base was rebuilt in the 1950s, but went into decline again in the 1990s when it could not compete with newer factories elsewhere in China. In 1992 Shenyang was designated open to foreign investment.
Economy Already highly developed by the Japanese before World War II, Shenyang is a major industrial city in the heavily industrialized northeast. Apart from metal-fabricating and machine-building factories, it also has important copper, zinc, and lead refineries. Other industries include the manufacture of rolling stock, machine tools, electrical apparatus, cement, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, textiles, and paper. It is the focus of six important railways and many airlines, and a major hub in the modern highway network. Most of the universities and colleges of the northeast are here.
Features The old city was walled, with an inner wall enclosing the former Imperial City. North of the city are Beiling, the burial place of the founder of the Qing dynasty Huang Taiji (1592–1643); and Dongling, the tomb of Nurhachi, the father of Huang Taiji and grandfather of the Emperor Shunzhi who launched the Manchu invasion of China in 1644.