Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: The Liqian in North-West China: Descendants of the Romans?

  1. #1
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Last Online
    Wednesday, January 28th, 2009 @ 12:22 PM
    Ethnicity
    English
    Subrace
    Lappid
    Country
    Southwest Africa Southwest Africa
    State
    Alabama Alabama
    Gender
    Age
    98
    Family
    Grandparent
    Posts
    307
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    1
    Thanked in
    1 Post

    The Liqian in North-West China: Descendants of the Romans?

    Residents of a remote Chinese village are hoping that DNA tests will prove one of history's most unlikely legends — that they are descended from Roman legionaries lost in antiquity. Scientists have taken blood samples from 93 people living in and around Liqian, a settlement in north-western China on the fringes of the Gobi desert, more than 200 miles from the nearest city. They are seeking an explanation for the unusual number of local people with western characteristics — green eyes, big noses, and even blonde hair — mixed with traditional Chinese features.

    "I really think we are descended from the Romans," said Song Guorong, 48, who with his wavy hair, six-foot frame and strikingly long, hooked nose stands out from his short, round-faced office colleagues.[...]

    The town's link with Rome was first suggested by a professor of Chinese history at Oxford in the 1950s. Homer Dubs pulled together stories from the official histories, which said that Liqian was founded by soldiers captured in a war between the Chinese and the Huns in 36BC, and the legend of the missing army of Marcus Crassus, a Roman general. In 53BC Crassus was defeated disastrously and beheaded by the Parthians, a tribe occupying what is now Iran, putting an end to Rome's eastward expansion.

    But stories persisted that 145 Romans were taken captive and wandered the region for years. Prof Dubs theorised that they made their way as a mercenary troop eastwards [...]

    Gu Meina, now six, was born with a shock of blonde hair. "We shaved it off a month after she was born but it just grew back the same colour," he said. "At school they call her 'yellow hair'. Before we were told about the Romans, we had no idea about this. [...] Another resident, Cai Junnian, 38, said his ruddy skin and green eyes meant he was now nicknamed Cai Luoma, or Cai the Roman, by friends. He has become a local celebrity, and was recently flown to the Italian consulate in Shanghai to meet his supposed relatives. [...]

    The blood tests are part of a project undertaken by scientists and historians after local authorities loosened control over genetic research. The results will be published in a scientific journal. But Prof Xie Xiaodong, a geneticist from Lanzhou University, cautioned against over enthusiasm. "Even if they are descendants of the Roman empire, it doesn't mean they are necessarily from the Roman army," he said. "The empire covered a large area. Many soldiers were recruited locally, so anything is possible."

    The issue has split the university's history department, with some scholars supporting the claim, some rejecting it. Prof Wang Shaokuan poured scorn on Prof Dubs's thesis, saying the Huns themselves included Caucasians, Asians and Mongols.
    Source: Telegraph

    What do you think? What would you classify the man as? There are more images in this slideshow

  2. #2
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Last Online
    Saturday, March 31st, 2007 @ 05:37 PM
    Subrace
    Nordid
    Country
    European Union European Union
    Gender
    Family
    Single, looking
    Posts
    108
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    Roman descendants found in China?

    Roman descendants found in China?


    Roman descendants found in China?

    By Richard Spencer in Liqian, north-west China


    # Richard Spencer meets the residents of Liqian

    Residents of a remote Chinese village are hoping that DNA tests will prove one of history's most unlikely legends — that they are descended from Roman legionaries lost in antiquity.

    Cai Junnian, Roman descendants found in China?
    Villager Cai Junnian with his green eyes and ruddy complexion

    Scientists have taken blood samples from 93 people living in and around Liqian, a settlement in north-western China on the fringes of the Gobi desert, more than 200 miles from the nearest city.

    They are seeking an explanation for the unusual number of local people with western characteristics — green eyes, big noses, and even blonde hair — mixed with traditional Chinese features.

    "I really think we are descended from the Romans," said Song Guorong, 48, who with his wavy hair, six-foot frame and strikingly long, hooked nose stands out from his short, round-faced office colleagues.

    "There are the residents with these special features, and then there are also historical records about the existence of these people long ago," he said.

    Studies claiming that Liqian has Roman ancestry have greatly excited the impoverished county in which it is situated. The village is now overlooked by a pillared portico, in the hope of attracting tourists. A statue at the entrance of the nearby county town, Yongchang, shows a Roman legionary standing next to a Confucian scholar and a Muslim woman, as a symbol of racial harmony.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main...2/wroman02.xml

  3. #3
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Last Online
    Monday, June 7th, 2010 @ 05:36 PM
    Ethnicity
    German
    Ancestry
    German
    Subrace
    Post-Aryan CM
    Country
    Germany Germany
    State
    Baden-Wuerttemberg Baden-Wuerttemberg
    Gender
    Posts
    78
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    AW: Roman descendants found in China?

    Romans in China ? Highly unlikely, when and how should that have happend ?
    636 A.D Rostam Eran-Sepahbod:

    "Lineage and skill will garner no respect,
    Men will be mutual thieves and have no shame,
    What's hidden will be worse than what is known,
    and stony-hearted kings will seize the throne.
    A misbegotten slave will rule the earth,
    Greatness and lineage will have no worth,
    No one will keep his word…

    Then Persians will live together side by side
    with Turks and Arabs, mixed far and wide...
    The three will blur, as if they were the same..."

  4. #4
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Last Online
    Wednesday, January 28th, 2009 @ 12:22 PM
    Ethnicity
    English
    Subrace
    Lappid
    Country
    Southwest Africa Southwest Africa
    State
    Alabama Alabama
    Gender
    Age
    98
    Family
    Grandparent
    Posts
    307
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    1
    Thanked in
    1 Post

    Sv: AW: Roman descendants found in China?

    Maybe wrong category, but I already posted about this here...

  5. #5
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Last Online
    Saturday, July 14th, 2018 @ 04:02 AM
    Ethnicity
    German
    Ancestry
    white
    Gender
    Posts
    174
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    Re: Roman descendants found in China?

    green eyes, big noses, and even blonde hair — mixed with traditional Chinese features.
    Traits common in Central Asia.

  6. #6
    Funding Member
    „Friend of Germanics”
    Funding Membership Inactive
    Desert Fox's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Last Online
    Saturday, March 31st, 2007 @ 09:54 PM
    Subrace
    Nordid
    Country
    United States United States
    Location
    Arizona
    Gender
    Family
    Having a longtime companion
    Posts
    117
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    Re: Roman descendants found in China?

    Quote Originally Posted by White_One View Post
    I sense even older White roots: Tocharians, perhaps?

  7. #7
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Last Online
    Wednesday, January 28th, 2009 @ 12:22 PM
    Ethnicity
    English
    Subrace
    Lappid
    Country
    Southwest Africa Southwest Africa
    State
    Alabama Alabama
    Gender
    Age
    98
    Family
    Grandparent
    Posts
    307
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    1
    Thanked in
    1 Post

    Sv: Re: Roman descendants found in China?

    Razib at Gene Expression has some insightful comments on this:
    The Daily Telegraph has an interesting article titled Roman descendents found in China? The girl to the left is one of many individuals in the city of Liqian who exhibit more conventially European features (e.g., londe hair) mixed in with a typical Han phenotype. The article floats the idea that these individuals are derived from a settlement of Roman soldiers, who were originally captured during the defeat of Marcus Licinius Crassus at the Battle of Carrhae. At this period the soldiers in the Roman army were generally from Rome proper. The article notes that researchers have taken DNA samples from 93 local individuals, so if these traits are evidence of Roman ancestry we'll find out pretty easily because Italians carry West Eurasian haplotypes which should stand out pretty easily.

    Of course, I think a more plausible guess is these individuals are simply part of the normal range of variation on the Western borders of China, which was inhabited byEuropean looking peoples like Tocharians until relatively recently. Additionally, during the rise of the Mongol Empire whole villages were transferred from the west to the east, and whole contingents of groups like the Alans (from the North Caucasus) were to be found in the Mongol ruled cities of North China. So, it is also possible that as opposed to ancient Romans, these individuals descend from transplants who arrived during the period the Pax Mongolica.

    A final point which I would like to emphasis is that the East Asian ecotype which we recognize as dominant in that region of Eurasia is actually a relatively recently phenomenon. The expansion of rice and wheat farmers from the North China plain, or the settlement of Japan from Korea within the last 2,000 years, as smothered (I suspect) a great deal of morphological variation in Eastern Eurasia, and "atypical" peoples and individuals might simply be remnants of the ancient range of variation before the demic expansion of "Classic Mongoloids" starting about 8-10,000 years ago.

  8. #8
    Account Inactive

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Last Online
    Saturday, June 11th, 2016 @ 12:27 PM
    Ethnicity
    English
    Subrace
    CM-Atlantidish
    Country
    England England
    State
    Lancashire Lancashire
    Location
    Mamvcivm
    Gender
    Age
    40
    Politics
    Nationalist
    Religion
    British
    Posts
    3,589
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    25
    Thanked in
    25 Posts

    Re: Sv: Re: Roman descendants found in China?

    Indeed there was a Chinese Government official some time back in the Han Dynasty, or those after it [I forget ], called something like Wang Mang [again, my memory may be at fault!] who launched a mass racial purification programme designed to eliminate Hunnish elements from the Middle Kingdom. A Chinese historian commented that not a few true Chinese were massacred, for the crime of having a too large nose, or too fair hair...

  9. #9
    Cnooc
    Guest

    Re: Sv: Re: Roman descendants found in China?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oswiu View Post
    Indeed there was a Chinese Government official some time back in the Han Dynasty, or those after it [I forget ], called something like Wang Mang [again, my memory may be at fault!] who launched a mass racial purification programme designed to eliminate Hunnish elements from the Middle Kingdom. A Chinese historian commented that not a few true Chinese were massacred, for the crime of having a too large nose, or too fair hair...
    the general's name was Ran Min. Again have to say, I am amazed at your knowledge of history.

    the people massacred were the Jie Hu one of the five tribes of Huns who essentially raped China and carved out their own feudal kingdoms during one of the interdynastic periods in Chinese history (similar to what the Germans did to the Romans). The other Hunnish tribes were Mongolian or Turkic, so they were harder to single out. Today Chinese historians consider the Jiehu to ethnically related to the Tajiks, or the Sogdians, and possibly, the Tocharians. However, this ethnic cleansing was only limited to the bounds of Ran Min's domain, which fortunately for the Jie, was not that big. The Jie Hu continue to appear later during points in Chinese history. There have been stories of Chinese generals or may or may not have been Jie. And there was a Jie emperor. not surprising since there have been Germanic Roman emperors and Greek Ottoman emperors (the Ottoman sultan who eventually destroyed the Byzantine empire was himself a Greek, descended from a greek concubine and an Ottoman sultan, who himself may have been half russian.)

    you know, long noses and long faces is not really a "foreign" or rare chacteristic in China, just like how round faces is not really a foreign or rare characteristic in Europe. The feature is quite common in the north central plains, places where the predecessors of the Han Chinese carved out their civilization. It is really during the expansion periods of Chinese history that the bulk of China really gained the bulk of its territory and its population (by sinicizing non-Han easterners and southerners). Today the most productive areas of China culturally and commercially speaking are in the south and east (mostly the southeast, Hong Kong, Canton, etc), and it is the people in those regions outsiders are most familiar with. Although Beijing is the capital today, the true, ancient capital should be Xi'an.

    Maps detailing expansion of Chinese empire

    Xia Dynasty (2100-1600 BC)

    Shang Dynasty (1600-1046 BC)

    Zhou Dynasty (1046-221 BC)

    Qin Dynasty (221-207 BC)

    Han Dynasty (206 BC - 220 AD)

    Tang Dynasty (618-907)

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Esther_Helena's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Last Online
    Tuesday, August 30th, 2016 @ 06:56 PM
    Ethnicity
    Celtogermanic
    Ancestry
    England, France, Germany, Ireland, Scottish, Switzerland, Wales
    Country
    United States United States
    State
    North Carolina North Carolina
    Gender
    Age
    36
    Family
    Single adult
    Posts
    860
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    1
    Thanked in
    1 Post

    Re: Liqian in north-west China are Roman descendants?

    I think it's fascinating, but I'd prefer to wait for the results of the genetic tests.

Similar Threads

  1. Oil Industry Sees China Winning, West Losing from Iran Sanctions
    By MCP3 in forum Economics, Business, & Finance
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: Friday, November 2nd, 2018, 01:01 PM
  2. Greetings from North West Switzerland
    By FreiheitEuropas in forum Introductions & Greetings
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: Sunday, November 13th, 2011, 07:46 PM
  3. China: West Has No Right to Punish Zimbabwe
    By The Aesthete in forum Articles & Current Affairs
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: Tuesday, February 15th, 2011, 04:21 PM
  4. Classify Tocharian Tarim Mummies in West China
    By Bioblitzkrieg in forum Anthropological Taxonomy
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: Friday, September 29th, 2006, 10:08 PM
  5. Classify people near China's West and guess their nationality
    By Beren in forum Anthropological Taxonomy
    Replies: 25
    Last Post: Monday, November 15th, 2004, 08:54 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •