Tainan or T'ai-nan (both: tĪˈnänˈ) [key], city (1994 pop. 706,811), W central Taiwan, on the Taiwan Strait. The fourth largest city of Taiwan, it has industries producing metals, textiles, machinery, processed foods, and handicrafts. It is also a center for the marketing and processing of sugarcane, rice, peanuts, and salt, and there is an important fishing industry. Settled in 1590, Tainan is the oldest city of Taiwan. It was taken over by the Dutch and used as their headquarters from 1624 to 1662. It then became the island's capital under Koxinga and his son. Called Taiwan or Taiwanfu, it remained the political center of the island until the transfer of government to Taipei in 1885, when the city was renamed Tainan. A cultural center, it has many temples, the shrine of Koxinga, and a modern college of engineering.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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