What's in a Name

Every Chinese family name has its own cultural origin that can be traced back thousands of years. In this column, Shanghai Daily introduces the biggest Chinese family names and their histories.
Art & Culture

Crane crazy Duke got wings clipped

There are three types of sources for Luo as a family name – derived from a local ancient surname – came from an official rank, and rooted from minorities in the Chinese history.
Art & Culture

Lost a letter ? Blame a man called Yin

It is estimated that there are about 2.24 million people surnamed Yin in China, ranking it the 104th in terms of population, accounting for about 0.16 percent of Chinese.
Art & Culture

An ancient name that flows like water

Teng is considered one of the oldest surnames and is used widely by many ethnic groups. 
Art & Culture

From generals to scholars and writers

An estimated 2.46 million people in China are surnamed Tang, making it the 101st most common names. The Tangs account for about 0.1 percent of the population.
Art & Culture

The Ni and their famous mysophobe

The Ni surname is the 111th most common, owned by an estimated number of 1.96 million people, or about 0.14 percent of China's population. 
Art & Culture

Minority name changed by Chinesization

Compared with many Chinese surnames, He is a quite young Chinese surname that did not appear until the Eastern Han Dynasty (AD 25-220).
Art & Culture

Long and proud history of the Leis

There are generally two types of sources for Lei as a family name which are derived from several local ancient surnames and rooted from minorities in the Chinese history.
Art & Culture

The many varied stories of the Xues

It is estimated that there are about 7.2 million people surnamed Xue in China, ranking it the 35th in terms of population. 
Art & Culture

Royalty and fame source of Cen name

There are an estimated 576,000 people in China with the surname Cen. It ranks the 235th Chinese family name in terms of the population.
Art & Culture

The Lian: a family of many tribes

There are an estimated 0.19 million people surnamed Lian in China, ranking the 290th in terms of population. Lians account for about 0.012 percent of the population.
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