Mongols in China

Chinese Mongols are citizens of China who are ethnic Mongols (Chinese: 蒙古族; pinyin: Měnggǔzú; literally: 'Mongol ethnicity'). They form one of the 55 ethnic minorities officially recognized by the People's Republic of China. There are approximately 5.8 million people classified as ethnic Mongols living in China. Most of them live in Inner Mongolia, Northeast China, Xinjiang, etc. The Mongol population in China is over twice that of the sovereign state of Mongolia.

Ethnic Mongols (蒙古族) in China
Mongol Autonomous Subjects in the PRC
This map shows the Mongol autonomous subjects in the PRC
Total population
Regions with significant populations
Inner Mongolia · Qinghai · Xinjiang
Mongolian · Oirat · Buryat
Mongolian shamanism · Tibetan Buddhism · Islam
Related ethnic groups
Buryats · Oirats
China linguistic map
Nieuhof-Ambassade-vers-la-Chine-1665 0828
Mongol ambassadors to the Chinese court. Nieuhof: L'ambassade de la Compagnie Orientale des Provinces Unies vers l'Empereur de la Chine, 1665

Regional distribution

The Mongols in China are divided between autonomous regions and provinces as follows:

Besides the Inner Mongolia autonomous region, there are other Mongol autonomous administrative subdivisions in China.

On prefecture level:

On county level:


Women of southern mogolia
Photo by Yvette Borup Andrews in 1920

China classifies different Mongolian groups like Buryats and Oirats into the same single category as Mongol along with Inner Mongols. A non-Mongolic ethnic group, the Tuvans are also classified as Mongols by China.[3] The official language used for all of these Mongols in China is a literary standard based on the Chahar dialect of Mongol.[4]

Related groups

Not all groups of people related to the medieval Mongols are officially classified as Mongols under the current system. Other official ethnic groups in China which speak Mongolic languages include:

Notable people


Morin Khuur, South Mongolian Style

A Mongol musician

See also



  1. ^ Түмэдхүү, ӨМӨЗО-НЫ ХҮН АМЫН ХУВИРАЛТЫН ЗУРГИЙГ ҮЗЭЭД (Southern) Mongolian Liberal Union Party (Mongolian): Millions of Han Chinese of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region registered as "Mongol" and "Manchu" according to Chinese policy since the 1980s. There is no enough information about Chinese ethnic minorities due to the government policy.
  2. ^ Өвөр Монголын хүн ам (Mongolian)
  3. ^ Mongush, M. V. "Tuvans of Mongolia and China." International Journal of Central Asian Studies, 1 (1996), 225-243. Talat Tekin, ed. Seoul: Inst. of Asian Culture & Development.
  4. ^ "Öbür mongγul ayalγu bol dumdadu ulus-un mongγul kelen-ü saγuri ayalγu bolqu büged dumdadu ulus-un mongγul kelen-ü barimǰiy-a abiy-a ni čaqar aman ayalγun-du saγurilaγsan bayidaγ." (Sečenbaγatur et al. 2005: 85).


  • Mongush, M.V. (1996). "Tuvans of Mongolia and China". International Journal of Central Asian Studies. 1: 225–243.
  • (in Mongolian) Sečenbaγatur, Qasgerel, Tuyaγ-a [Туяa], Bu. Jirannige, Wu Yingzhe, Činggeltei. 2005. Mongγul kelen-ü nutuγ-un ayalγun-u sinǰilel-ün uduridqal [A guide to the regional dialects of Mongolian]. Kökeqota: ÖMAKQ. ISBN 7-204-07621-4.

Further reading

External links


The Abaganars are (Khalkha-Mongolian:Авга нар/Avga nar) a Southern Mongolian sub-ethnic group in Inner Mongolia of China.

Bortala Mongol Autonomous Prefecture

Bortala (Chinese: 博尔塔拉蒙古族自治州; pinyin: Bóěrtǎlā Měnggǔzú Zìzhìzhōu) is an autonomous prefecture for Mongol people in the northern middle of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, Western China. It has an area of 27,000 km2 (10,000 sq mi). Bole is its capital. "Boro tala" comes from the Mongolian language, and means "brown steppe".


The Chahars (Khalkha Mongolian: Цахар, Tsahar) are a subgroup of Mongols that speak Chakhar Mongolian and predominantly live in southeastern Inner Mongolia, China.

The Chahars were originally one of estates of Kublai Khan located around Jingzhao (now Xi'an). They moved from Shaanxi to southeastern region controlled by the Northern Yuan dynasty based in Mongolia in the 15th century. The Chahar became a tumen of six tumen Mongols under Dayan Khan and were led by his successors, thus becoming personal appanage of the Mongolian Khans.

Oppressed by Altan Khan, the Chahars, led by Daraisung Guden Khan, moved eastward onto the Liao River in the middle of the 16th century. In the early 17th century Ligdan Khan made an expedition to the west because of pressure from the Manchu people. When he died in Gansu on his way to Tibet, his son, Ejei, surrendered to the Manchus in 1635 and was given the title of Prince (Chinese: 親王) and Inner Mongolian nobility became closely tied to the Qing royal family and intermarried with them extensively. Ejei Khan died in 1661 and was succeeded by his brother Abunai.

The Chahar royal family kept favorable relations with the Manchu imperial family until Makata gege, who was a daughter of Hong Taiji and married to the Chahar Mongol prince, died in 1663. After Abunai showed disaffection with Manchu Qing rule, he was placed under house arrested in 1669 in Shenyang and the Kangxi Emperor gave his title to his son Borni. Abunai then bid his time and then he and his brother Lubuzung revolted against the Qing in 1675 during the Revolt of the Three Feudatories, with 3000 Chahar Mongol followers joining in on the revolt.

The revolt was put down within two months; the Qing then crushed the rebels in a battle on April 20, 1675, killing Abunai and all his followers. Their title was abolished, all Chahar Mongol royal males were executed even if they were born to Manchu Qing princesses, and all Chahar Mongol royal females were sold into slavery except the Manchu Qing princesses. As a result of the rebellion, the Chahar Mongols were reorganized into Banners and moved to around Zhangjiakou. The Chahar Mongols did not belong to a league but were directly controlled by the Emperor. The Qing authorities resettled some of their population from the suburbs of Hohhot and Dolon Nor to the Ili River after the fall of the Dzungar Khanate in c. 1758. They were largely mixed with the Dzungar people and Torghut of the region.

When Outer Mongolia declared its independence from the Qing in 1911, 100 households under former vice-governor Sumya fled from Xinjiang via the Russian border to Mongolia. They were resettled by the Khalkha in the west of Kyakhta. Sumiya and his Tsahars contributed to the revolution of 1921. They are known as the Selenge's Tsahar since settled in Selenge.

Many of the Chinese troops during the occupation of Mongolia in 1919 were Chahar Mongols, which has been a major cause for animosity between Khalkhas and Inner Mongols.

East Asian people

East Asian people (East Asians, Northeast Asians, or Orientals) is a racial classification specifier used for ethnic groups and subgroups that are indigenous to East Asia, which consists of China, Hong Kong, Macau, Japan, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea, and Taiwan. The major ethnic groups that form the core of East Asia are the Han, Korean, and Yamato. Other ethnic groups of East Asia include the Bai, Hui, Tibetans, Manchus, Ryukyuan, Ainu, Zhuang, and Mongols.

Haixi Mongol and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture

Haixi Mongol and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture (Chinese: 海西蒙古族藏族自治州, Mongolian: Qayisi-yin Mongɣol Töbed ündüsüten-ü öbertegen zasaqu jvu, Standard Tibetan: མཚོ་ནུབ་སོག་རིགས་ཆ་བོད་རིགས་རང་སྐྱོང་ཁུལ་ Sogrig Poirig Ranggyong Kü, wylie.Mtsho-nub Sog-rigs dang Bod-rigs rang-skyong-khul), locally also known as Qaidam Prefecture (mong. Qaidam; tib. Caindam; chin. Chaidamu), is an autonomous prefecture occupying much of the northern tier of as well as part of the southwest Qinghai province, China. It has an area of 325,785 square kilometres (125,786 sq mi) and its seat is Delingha. The name of the prefecture literally means "west of (Qinghai) Lake."

Geladandong Mountain, the source of the Yangtze River, is located here.

Inner Mongolia

Inner Mongolia or Nei Mongol (Mongolian: Mongolian script: Öbür Monggol, Mongolian Cyrillic: Өвөр Монгол Övör Mongol /ɵwɵr mɔŋɢɔɮ/; simplified Chinese: 内蒙古; traditional Chinese: 內蒙古; pinyin: PRC Standard Mandarin: Nèi Měnggǔ, ROC Standard Mandarin: Nèi Ménggǔ), officially the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region or Nei Mongol Autonomous Region (NMAR), is a Mongolic autonomous region in Northern China. Its border includes most of the length of China's border with Mongolia (Dornogovi, Sükhbaatar, Ömnögovi, Bayankhongor, Govi-Altai, Dornod Provinces). The rest of the Sino–Mongolian border coincides with part of the international border of the Xinjiang autonomous region and the entirety of the international border of Gansu province and a small section of China's border with Russia (Zabaykalsky Krai). Its capital is Hohhot; other major cities include Baotou, Chifeng, and Ordos.

The Autonomous Region was established in 1947, incorporating the areas of the former Republic of China provinces of Suiyuan, Chahar, Rehe, Liaobei and Xing'an, along with the northern parts of Gansu and Ningxia.

Its area makes it the third largest Chinese subdivision, constituting approximately 1,200,000 km2 (463,000 sq mi) and 12% of China's total land area. It recorded a population of 24,706,321 in the 2010 census, accounting for 1.84% of Mainland China's total population. Inner Mongolia is the country's 23rd most populous province-level division. The majority of the population in the region are Han Chinese, with a sizeable titular Mongol minority. The official languages are Mandarin and Mongolian, the latter of which is written in the traditional Mongolian script, as opposed to the Mongolian Cyrillic alphabet, which is used in the state of Mongolia (formerly often described in the West as "Outer Mongolia").

Jiangqiao Mongol Ethnic Town

Jiangqiao Mongol Town (simplified Chinese: 江桥蒙古族镇; traditional Chinese: 江橋蒙古族鎮; pinyin: Jiāngqiáo Měnggǔzú Zhèn; Wade–Giles: Chiang-ch'iao) or Ha-la-erh-ka, is a town on the southwestern (left) bank of the Nen River in Tailai County, western Heilongjiang province, People's Republic of China. It is located 67 kilometres (42 mi) south-southwest of downtown Qiqihar and is served by China National Highway 111. As of 2011, it has one residential community (社区) and 6 villages under its administration.

Journal of East Asian Studies

The Journal of East Asian Studies is a peer-reviewed academic journal published triannually by Lynne Rienner Publishers. It was established in 2001 and is abstracted and indexed by Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost, International Bibliography of the Social Sciences, International Political Science Abstracts, and Social Sciences Citation Index. As of 2012 the editor-in-chief is Stephan Haggard.


The Hishigten (Khalkha-Mongolian: Хишигтэн/Hishigten) are one of the Southern Mongol ethnic groups. Today, they live in Heshigten Banner of China.

Khorchin Mongolian

The Khorchin (Mongolian ᠬᠣᠷᠴᠢᠨ Qorčin, Chinese 科尔沁 Kē'ěrqìn) dialect is a variety of Mongolian spoken in the east of Inner Mongolia, namely in Hinggan League, in the north, north-east and east of Hinggan and in all but the south of the Tongliao region. There were 2.08 million Khorchin Mongols in China in 2000, so the Khorchin dialect may well have more than one million speakers, making it the largest dialect of Inner Mongolia.

Khorchin Mongols

The Khorchin (Хорчин, Horçin; ᠬᠤᠷᠴᠢᠨ Qorčin) is a subgroup of the Mongols that speak the Khorchin dialect of Mongolian and predominantly live in northeastern Inner Mongolia of China.

Mongolian Chinese

Mongolian Chinese or Chinese Mongolian may refer to:

People's Republic of China-Mongolia relations

Republic of China-Mongolia relations

Of or related to Inner Mongolia (this usage may be controversial)

Phagspa script, once used by Mongolians learning Chinese to spell out the pronunciations of Chinese characters

Ethnic Mongols in China

Ethnic Chinese in Mongolia

Mongolians in Taiwan (Republic of China)

Mixed race people of Han Chinese and Mongol descent

Hot pot, a type of dish often served in so-called Mongolian restaurants in China

Mongolian barbecue, a style of cooking invented in Taiwan which is neither Mongolian nor barbecue


The Mongols (Mongolian: Монголчууд, ᠮᠣᠩᠭᠣᠯᠴᠤᠳ, Mongolchuud, [ˈmɔŋ.ɢɔɮ.t͡ʃʊːt]) are a Mongolic ethnic group native to Mongolia and to China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. They also live as minorities in other regions of China (e.g. Xinjiang), as well as in Russia. Mongolian people belonging to the Buryat and Kalmyk subgroups live predominantly in the Russian federal subjects of Buryatia and Kalmykia.

The Mongols are bound together by a common heritage and ethnic identity. Their indigenous dialects are collectively known as the Mongolian language. The ancestors of the modern-day Mongols are referred to as Proto-Mongols.


The Muumyangan (Khalkha-Mongolian:Муумянган/Muumyangan) are a sub-ethnic group of the Southern Mongols in Darhan Muminggan United Banner, China. The name probably means "bad (muu) thousand (myangan)."


The Onniguds (Khalkha-Mongolian:Оннигууд/Onniguud) are a sub-ethnic group of the Southern Mongols in Ongniud Banner, China. They were ruled by Genghis Khan's relative Otchigin noyan in the 13th century.

Ordos Mongols

The Ordos (Mongolian Cyrillic: Ордос) are a Mongol subgroup that live in Uushin district, Inner Mongolia of China. Ordos literally means plural of Ordo.

The Three Tribes of Uriyangkhaid, Tümed in north Shanxi, Ordos Mongols in Ordos and north of Shensi extended southward beyond the Ming defense zone in the 14-15th centuries. Since 1510, the Ordos were ruled by descendants of Batumongke Dayan Khan.

The Ordos Mongols believe that they have been responsible for the shrine of Genghis Khan since their inception. However, the modern place where mausoleum of Genghis Khan located is inhabited by the Darkhads because the Ordos Mongols were forced to be resettled outside Ordos grasslands. Traditionally, Ordos territory is divided into 7 banners.

Their number reached 64,000 in 1950 and a possible current estimate of the Ordos people might be less than 100,000.

Sichuan Mongols

The Sichuan Mongols are officially counted among the Mongolian nationality in China. However, they are a distinct ethno-linguistic group from all other Mongolian peoples. They call themselves Mongols and possess their own clothing, history and language. All other peoples in the region recognize them as Mongols (Mengzu).

The Sichuan Mongols' main religion is Tibetan Buddhism. A sizable temple remains in active use just behind the prince's house. Most temples and altars being destroyed during the Cultural Revolution but many of them were recovered afterwards. Most Sichuan Mongols are farmers or fishermen, leading quiet lives in their remote villages. They observe Buddhist festivals.

Historically, the Mongols in Yongning were ruled by three chiefs, elevated to power by Kublai Khan in the 13th century. Before Communist rule, the Mongol monarch acted as a warlord over the whole region. When the Communists took over, they deposed him, not killing him so as not to make him a martyr in the people's eyes. The Mongol palace was destroyed and the prince was sent to a reeducation camp for several years. The prince, La Ping Chu, is still alive today and respected by his people, although he is not allowed to rule. Many older Mongols still bow their heads in respect when they pass him on the street.

Stephen G. Haw

Stephen G. Haw (born 1951) is a botanical taxonomist and historian, specializing in subjects relating to China. He is the author of several published books and a large number of periodical articles. His most important work relates to the taxonomy of Tree Peonies and to the history of the Mongol period in East Asia. He has made a major contribution to studies of Marco Polo's account of East Asia: according to Peter Jackson, an authority on the history of the Mongol conquests, his book about Marco Polo "must surely now have settled the controversy surrounding the historicity of Polo's visit to China."He studied Chinese at the University of Oxford (Wadham College), and took an M.A. at the University of London. He also studied at the University of Shandong in China. His first book, The Lilies of China, was published in 1986. He subsequently authored China: A Cultural History (1991), A Traveller’s History of China (first edition 1995; several subsequent editions), Broadleaved Evergreens (2001), Marco Polo's China (2006), and Beijing – A Concise History (2007). Of these, A Traveller’s History of China has been published in translations into Finnish, Swedish and Portuguese. One reviewer wrote of this book that it "is not the perfect solution to the problem of a single source for the prospective China tourist, but it is by far the best attempt at such a book I have yet seen."His articles have appeared in many different periodicals, including the Royal Horticultural Society's publications The Garden and The Plantsman, Hortus, Country Life, The Edinburgh Journal of Botany, and Acta Phytotaxonomica Sinica. During the last few years, several important articles relating to the history of the Mongols in China have appeared in academic journals including the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, East Asian History, the Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, and the Journal of Asian History.

Üzemchin Mongols

The Üzemchin (Mongolian: Үзэмчин), also written Ujumchin, Ujumucin or Ujimqin, are a subgroup of Mongols in eastern Mongolia and Inner Mongolia. They settle mainly in Sergelen, Bayantu'men, Choibalsan city of the Dornod Province and in Xilin Gol League of the Inner Mongolia. In Mongolia, Some Üzemchins migrated there from Xilin Gol immediately after China was freed from the Japanese in 1945.

The Üzemchin was included the Chahar tumen of the six tumen eastern Mongols in Northern Yuan Dynasty. The land of Ongon-Dural, the third son of Bodi Alagh Khan of the Northern Yuan was called Üzemchin. The name probably originates from the Mongolian language word "uzem" meaning "raisin" as in "raisin pickers/collectors."

The Üzemchin language is a dialect of Chakhar Mongolian.

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