The location of the early Chu capital, Danyang, has never been definitively determined. Since Han times, several hypotheses have been offered. That advocating a southwest Hubei location (Zigui or Zhijiang xian), the standard opinion, has generally governed analyses of early Chu historical and cultural development, particularly of the archaeological data uncovered in the past few decades. Another hypothesis, that advocating a southwest Henan (Xichuan) site for Danyang, however, has recently gained popularity.
The Danyang problem can be approached from a number of angles. This paper attempts first to assess the relative probabilities of all of the hypotheses on the basis of a rather strict evaluation of the evidence provided by historical geography and then to judge the quality of the presently available archaeological evidence given in support of each. From the above perspectives, the author concludes that the relative probabilities favor the southwest Henan hypothesis.