Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2016, Vol. 71 ›› Issue (11): 1967-1978.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201611008

• Land Use • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Reconstruction of cropland area at Lu scale and its spatial-temporal characteristics in the Northern Song Dynasty

Fanneng HE1(), Meijiao LI1,2(), Haolong LIU1   

  1. 1. Key Laboratory of Land Surface Pattern and Simulation, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2016-04-20 Revised:2016-07-30 Online:2016-11-25 Published:2016-11-29
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41271227;The Special Program for Basic Work of the Ministry of Science and Technology, China, No.2014FY210900


Based on "Cropland Taxes" and "the Number of Households" data recorded in historical documents, this paper estimated cropland area of the Northern Song Dynasty by analyzing some society factors in this dynasty, including land use policies and taxation system. Besides, by quantifying the relationship among population proportion, per capita cropland and cropland spatial pattern in the mid-Northern Song Dynasty, we designed a cropland distribution model. And the model was used to reconstruct cropland area at Lu (administrative region of the Northern Song Dynasty) scale for AD 976, 997, 1066 and 1078. The results are shown as follows: (1) The cropland area of the whole study area for AD 976, 997, 1066 and 1078 of the Northern Song Dynasty were about 468.27 million mu (Chinese area unit, 1 mu=666.7 m2), 495.53 million mu, 697.65 million mu and 731.94 million mu, respectively, and 264 million mu was increased for AD 976-1078. The annual growth rate of cropland area was about 4.4‰, and the reclamation rate (i.e. ratio of cropland area to total land area) increased from 10.7% to 16.8%, and per capita cropland area decreased from 15.7 mu to 8.4 mu. (2) In terms of the characteristics of cropland spatial pattern change, the reclamation rate of the Southeast, Northern and Southwest in the Northern Song territory increased by 12.0%, 5.2% and 1.2%, respectively, and that of some regions of the Yangtze River Plain increased to more than 40%, and for the North China Plain the reclamation rate increased to more than 20%. The reclamation rate of the Southwest (except the Chengdu Plain) in the Northern Song territory was less than 6%. (3) The evaluation results show that the absolute relative error of 84.2% Lu was less than 20%, so the cropland distribution model is feasible. Therefore, our reconstruction results can reflect the spatial-temporal characteristics of cropland area in the Northern Song Dynasty.

Key words: LUCC, cropland area, reconstruction at Lu scale, spatial-temporal characteristics, the Northern Song Dynasty