Guangxi, formerly romanized Kwangsi, is a province of southern China along its border with Vietnam. In 1958, it became the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China, a region with special privileges created specifically for the Zhuang people.
Guangxi's location, in mountainous terrain in the far south of China, has placed it on the frontier of Chinese civilization throughout much of China's history. The current name "Guang" means "expanse" and has been associated with the region since the creation of Guang Prefecture in AD 226. It was given provincial level status during the Yuan Dynasty, but even into the 20th century it was considered an open, wild territory.
The abbreviation of the province is , which comes from the city of Guilin, the former capital, center of much of Guangxi's culture, politics, and history, and currently a major city in the autonomous region.
Originally inhabited by a mixture of tribal groups known to the Chinese as the Hundred Yue (Baiyue), the region first became part of China during the Qin Dynasty. In 214 BC, the Han general Zhao Tuo (Vietnamese: Triệu Đà) claimed most of southern China for Qin Shihuang before the emperor's death and the ensuing civil war permitted Zhao to establishment a separate kingdom at Panyu known as Southern Yue (Nanyue). Alternatively submissive to and independent of Han control, Southern Yue expanded colonization and Sinification under its policy of "Harmonizing and Gathering the Hundred Yue" until its collapse in 111 BC.