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China

Traditional Chinese: 中國
Simplified Chinese: 中国

China ; Wade-Giles : Chung¹kuo²) is a cultural region, an ancient civilization, and, depending on perspective, a national or multinational entity extending over a large area in East Asia.

The last Chinese Civil War has resulted in two political entities using the name China:

  • Flag of the People's Republic of China People's Republic of China , commonly known as Communist China or simply China, has control over mainland China and the largely self-governing territories of Hong Kong and Macau .
  • Flag of the Republic of China Republic of China , commonly known as Nationalist China or Taiwan, has control over the islands of Taiwan, Pescadores, Kinmen, and Matsu.

China has one of the world's oldest people and continuous civilizations, consisting of states and cultures dating back more than six millennia. It has the world's longest continuously used written language system, and is the source of many major inventions, such as what the British scholar and biochemist Joseph Needham called the "four great inventions of Ancient China": paper, the compass, gunpowder, and printing. Historically, China's cultural sphere has extended across East Asia as a whole, with Chinese religion, customs, and writing systems being adopted to varying degrees by neighbors such as Japan, Korea and Vietnam. The first evidence of human presence in the region was found at the Zhoukoudian cave and is one of the first known specimens of Homo erectus, now commonly known as the Peking Man, estimated to have lived approximately from 300,000 to 550,000 years ago. Noticeably, it is also known that the Peking Man was able to control and use fire.

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