Hubei (formerly romanised as Hupeh) is a province of the People's Republic of China, located in the Central China region. The name of the province means "north of the lake", referring to its position north of Dongting Lake. The provincial capital is Wuhan, a major transportation thoroughfare and the political, cultural, and economic hub of Central China.
Hubei is officially abbreviated to in Pinyin È, an ancient name associated with the eastern part of the province since the State of E of the Western Zhou dynasty, while a popular name for Hubei is in Pinyin Chǔ, after the powerful State of Chu that existed in the area during the Eastern Zhou dynasty. It borders Henan to the north, Anhui to the east, Jiangxi to the southeast, Hunan to the south, Chongqing to the west, and Shaanxi to the northwest. The high-profile Three Gorges Dam is located at Yichang, in the west of the province.