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Wenzhou's Wooden Movable-Type Printing Inscribed on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage

wenzhou wooden movable type printing inscribed on the list of intangible cultural heritage

Wenzhou, renown for its businessmen and private economy, is also attracting world attention with its profound culture. The UNESCO Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage decided on Nov. 16, 2010 to inscribe on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding China's wooden movable-type printing, which is maintained in Rui'an City, Wenzhou.

As the only wooden movable-type printing technique maintained and still used in China. Rui'an's wooden movable-type printing has a great value in history, cultural and art and best proves the movable-type printing originates from China. The wooden movable-type printing in Dongyuan Village of Rui'an has been handed on for fourteen generations with a history of more than 800 years. At present, there are nearly one hundred craftspeople still engaged in movable-type printing, but the number of those who have a mastery of the full printing procedures including calligraphy, engraving and rote etc is only seven. Last year, Rui'an’s wooden movable-type printing applied to the UNESCO to be inscribed on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding.

According to experts in intangible cultural heritage, Rui'an's wooden movable-type printing being inscribed on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding shows its important position in China's printing history and in the world civilization, and further promotes Wenzhou's cultural reputation and its fame in the world. Previously, Yongjia's Kunqu Opera, Yueqing's paper-cut and Taishun's wooden arch bridges in Wenzhou have been inscribed on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity and the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding respectively.

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