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Dear Ms. Mary Ma,
I am back from China now and would like to take a moment out of my busy schedule to let you know that your company and your guide Rogin Lee are fantastic. Rogine made my tour of China, his depth of knowledge is incredible and his presentations and introductions were indepth and interesting. Rogin presented China's past and present in a new light. This China tour with Rogin surpassed what I was expecting from any China tour company. I would like to extend my thanks to yourself, Rogin Lee and Mr. Wong, the driver.
Lee A. Gravesen
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We had an absolutely perfect day with our tour guide - Rogin Luo - who took us for a hike along The Great Wall! Didn't know what to expect and were thrilled to have him as our guide. Very imformative, knowledgable and fun! We go to experience a part of The Great Wall that was unrestored and see all its natural beauty. Got a long history lesson along the way! After the hike, we all went to lunch at a small place at the bottom of the hill. Located in a house, we ate lunch in the proprietors bedroom! What a hoot! Rogin is the Best of the Best! This tour company delivered for us and we are extremely grateful.

Westborough, Massachusetts
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Home  »  China Travel Guide  »  China Facts  »  China 56 Ethnic Groups 8
China 56 Ethnic Groups 8

Han – China 56 Ethnic Groups
The Han is the majority group within China, living all around the country. The distribution is dense in the east and sparse in the west. According to the fifth national census in 2000, the population of the Han was 1,159,400,000. It is the largest single ethnic group not only in China but also in the world.

The Han language belongs to Sino-Tibetan language. There are seven major dialects: northern dialect, Wu dialect, Xiang dialect, Yue dialect, Min dialect, Gan dialect and Hakka dialect.

Despite various dialects, the common language of the Han is mandarin. The Han language is called Chinese. In its writing system, the characters are morphosyllabic, each usually corresponding to a spoken syllable with a basic meaning.

Among the oldest languages in the world, Chinese is the only existing one that keeps developing and maintains vitality.

Gin – China 56 Ethnic Groups
Throughout the history, apart from the self-given name Gin, it was called Yue by others. Its name was officially fixed in 1928. the ancestor of the Gins emigrated from Mt. Do-Son, Vietnam after the 15th century. They first settled in Wutou Island and Zhaitou Village near Jiangping Town, and then gradually administrative agency of patrol and inspection, governed by Fangcheng Town in the late Qing Dynasty.

The Gins mainly live on three islands of Wutou, Wanwei, and Shanxin in Jiangping Town, Dongxing city, Fangchenggang, Guang Zhuang Autonomous Region. Based on the fifth national census, the Gin had a population of 22,517 in 2000.

The Gins have their own language, whose attribution has not been affirmed yet. Currently, they generally read and write in Han language or Cantonese dialect.

Gelao – China 56 Ethnic Groups
The Gelao has a long history and close relation with the “Liao” people who live in today’s Guizhou Province. Names like “Geliao” and “Gelao” appeared in historical books in the Tang and Song Dynasties.

In the Yuan and Ming Dynasties, the residential areas of the Gelaos were mostly governed by chieftains from other ethnic groups. From the late ming Dynasty to the Yongzheng years of the Qing Dynasty, the local chieftains were gradually replaced by the appointees from the central government. The Galao ethnic minority was formally named after the founding of PRC.

The Gelaos scatter in northwestern, southwestern and northern Guizhou Province. According to the fifth national census in 2000, the Gelao population was 579,357.

The Gelaos have their own language which belongs to Sino-Tibetan language family. Because of the small population and scattered residence, their language is mutually unintelligible-even within the same country. At present, only a very few of them can speak the Gelao language. Having no written script, they use Chinese characters instead.

Ewenki – China 56 Ethnic Groups
“Ewenki” is the self-given name, meaning people living in big mountains and forests. They used to be called “Suolun”, “Tonggusi”, “Yakut” and so on after their dwellings during different periods. In 1957, they were officially named Ewenk in accord with their own will.

The Ewenkis are widely distributed across Ewenki Autonomous Banner, Chenbaerhu Banner, Stadt Zalantun, Arong Banner, Genhe City, Morin Dawa Daur Autonomous Banner, etc.

The Ewenki have no written script but a spoken language composed of three dialects belonging ot the Man-Tungusic branch of the Altaic language family. The schools in pastoral area use Mongolian script, while others in agricultural and mountain areas use the Han language.

Dongxiang – China 56 Ethnic Groups
The name “Dongxiang” comes from the place where they live, Hezhou. The Dongxiangs originated from several ethnic groups that concentrated at Dongxiang in the latter half of the 14th century.

The majority of the Dongxiang ancestors were Semu people and Mongols who believed in Islan. There people lived together with the local Han and Tibetan people for a long time, and gradually intergrated. Prior to the founding of the PRC, they were called “Dongxian Hui”. In 1951, they were officially recognized as a minority, namely “Dongxiang”.

The Dongxiang language is a member of the Mongolic branch of the Altaic language family. Most of them can speak Chinese. With no written script of their own, they generally read and write Han-Chinese.

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