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Barbarians and Foreign States

The following list includes historical native tribes living within the present boundaries of China, non-Chinese tribes who founded dynasties on Chinese soil (as well as the names of their states, like both Qidan 契丹 / Kitans, and Liao 遼), and foreign states and peoples with which the Chinese dynasties had established "diplomatic relations" (like Anxi 安息 / Parthia, or Paekche 百濟). It does not include peoples officially designated as "national minorities" by the People's Republic of China.

All names are rendered in the Chinese version and the original name (like Baiji and Paekche). In some cases, several transcriptions are provided (like Beshbalik, Bešbalik, Bešbaliq). Foreign states are only given from the Chinese perspective (there is, therefore, no keyword "Persia"), except for the case of India (Tianzhu 天竺). States of Europe and America are not included.

The Chinese names of states of Southeast and South Asia and the Near East are only included as keywords, without articles referring to them (lists of these countries can be found in the table of contents of the books Yingya shenglan 瀛涯勝覽 and Xingcha shenglan 星槎勝覽). A complete list of the countries of the Tarim Basin and beyond can be found in the articles on the city-states of the Silk Road and the protectorate of the Western Territories.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
A [top]
Adan 阿丹 Chinese name for Aden in Arabia
Ailao 哀牢 native tribes the modern province of Yunnan, Han period
Aksu see Gumo 姑墨
Anguo 安國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Anxi 安息 Chinese name for Parthia, Han period
Avars erroneous Western term for Rouran 柔然
B [top]
Ba native state in modern Chongqing, Zhou period
Baiji 百濟 Chinese reading of Paekche, a kingdom in ancient Korea
Banggela 榜葛剌 Chinese name for Bengal
Bašmyls 拔悉蜜 Turkish tribe, Tang period
Baximi 拔悉蜜 see Bašmyls
Beiwei 北魏 Northern Wei, dynasty founded by the Taɣbač tribe
Beshbalik (Bešbalik, Bešbaliq) 別失八里 Turkish state around modern Ürümqi, Tang period
Biao Chinese name for the kingdom of Pyu in Myanmar, Tang period
Bohai 渤海 Balhae, state north of modern North Korea
Buliyate 布里雅特 Chinese name for the Buryats
C [top]
Caoguo 曹國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Čerčen see Qiemo 且末
Chajala 茶札剌 Chinese name for the Jalayirs
Cheshi 車師 city-state of the Silk Road
Chaoxian 朝鮮 Chinese reading for Joseon, Korea
Chile 敕勒 Turkish steppe tribe, pre-Tang
Chosŏn see Korea
Chu native state in the middle Yangtze region, Zhou period
D [top]
Dada 韃靼 Tatars, i. e. the Mongols after the Yuan period
Dali 大理 native state in the modern province of Yunnan, Song period
Dangxiang 黨項 Chinese name for the Tanguts
Daqin 大秦 Chinese name for the Levant, often identified with the Roman empire
Dashi 大食 Chinese name for the Muslim states Persia, Tang period
Daxia 大夏 Chinese name for Bactria, Han period
Dayuan 大宛 state in the far west, in modern Uzbekistan, Han period
Di steppe tribe, generic designation for "northern barbarians"
Di native people in the modern province of Gansu, Han to Northern Dynasties periods
Dian native state in the modern province of Yunnan, Han period
Dilie 敵烈 steppe tribe, proto-Mongols, Tang period
Dingling 丁零 steppe tribe, proto-Turks, Northern Dynasties period
Dunhuang 敦煌 westernmost commandery of ancient China
Dzungars 準噶爾 see Oirats
E [top]
Elute 厄魯特 Chinese name for the Oirats
F [top]
Funan 扶南 state in the southern part of modern Vietnam, Song period
Fuyu 夫余 state in the northern part of the Korean Peninsula, Tang period
G [top]
Gaoche 高車 steppe tribe, proto-Turks, Han period
Gaogouli 高句麗 Chinese reading of Koguryŏ, a kingdom in ancient Korea
Gaoli 高麗 Chinese reading of Koryŏ, the name of medieval Korea
Gelan 葛蘭 Chinese name for Quilon or Kulam in southern India
Geluolu 葛邏祿 Chinese name for the Qarluq, a steppe tribe
Guawa 瓜哇 Chinese name for Java
Guici see Qiuci 龜茲
Guishuang 貴霜 Chinese name for the Kushan state, modern Afghanistan
Guli 古里 Chinese name for Calicut in southern India
Gumo 姑墨 city-state of the Silk Road
H [top]
Hanguo 韓國 (Hanguk) see Korea
Heihan 黑汗 the Karakhan states in modern Xiang and Uzbekistan, Song period
Heguo 何國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Hephthalites (White Huns) or Yeda 嚈噠 nomad tribe in modern Afghanistan and India
Hongjila 弘吉剌 Chinese name for the Qonggirads, a steppe tribe
Hu generic Chinese designation of steppe tribes
Huhu 狐胡 city-state of the Silk Road
Huige 回紇 old Chinese name for the Uyghurs
Huigu 回鶻 old Chinese name for the Uyghurs
Hulumosi 忽魯謨廝 Chinese name for Hormuz, Oman
Huns erroneous Western term for Xiongnu 匈奴
Huoxun 火尋 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
I [top]
India see Tianzhu 天竺
J [top]
Japan 日本
Jie steppe tribe, Northern Dynasties period
Jilijisi 吉利吉思 Chinese name for the Qirqizes
Jin dynasty Chinese dynasty founded by the Jurchens
Jimsar see Cheshi 車師 and Tingzhou 庭州
Jingjue 精絕 city-state of the Silk Road
Jiuxiang 舊香 Chinese name for Palembang, a city on Sumatera, Indonesia
Jurchen 女真 tribal federation of northeast China, ancestors to the Manchus
K [top]
Kalmyks see Oirats
Kangguo 康國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Kangju 康居 tribe in modern Kazakhstan, Han period
Karakhans "Black Khans" Muslim states in modern Xinjiang and Uzbekistan
Karakum see Weili 尉犁
Karašahr see Yanqi 焉耆
Kargan see Shanshan 鄯善
Karluks see Qarluqs
Kašgar see Shule 疏勒
Kelie 克烈 Chinese name for the Kereyids
Keraits see Kereyids
Kereyids Turkish tribe
Keriya see Yumi 扜彌
Kezhi 柯枝 Chinese name for Cochin in southern India
Khotan see Yutian 于闐
Kirgizes, see Qirqizes Turkish tribe
Kitans steppe people, proto-Mongols founding the Chinese Liao dynasty
Koguryŏ 高句麗 see Korea
Korea 朝鮮/韓國
Korla see Quli 渠犁
Koryŏ 高麗 see Korea
Kuča see Qiuci 龜茲
Kushana state in modern Afghanistan
L [top]
Liao Chinese state founded by the Kitans
Lidai 黎代 Chinese name for Litai or Lide in Sumatera
Liuqiu see Ryūkyū
Liushan 溜山 Chinese name for the Maldive Islands
Lixuan 黎軒 perhaps Eastern Rome
Loulan 樓蘭 city-state of the Silk Road
Luoxing 裸形 Chinese name for the Nicobar Islands
M [top]
Malgal Korean reading of Mohe 靺鞨
Man generic designation for native tribes in southern China
Manlajia 滿剌加 Chinese name for Malacca
Menggu 蒙古 Chinese name for the Mongols
Merkits steppe tribe
Miao general term for native tribes in southwestern China
Mie'rqi 蔑兒乞 see Merkits
Miguo 米國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Mohe 靺鞨 Tungus people in northeast China
Mongols steppe people founding the Chinese Yuan dynasty
N [top]
Naboli 那浡里 Chinese name for Lamuri in Sumatera [not Naples! 😃]
Nagu'r 那孤兒 (Chinese name for Nagur or Nakur in Sumatera
Naimans 乃蠻 Turkish tribe
Nanzhao 南詔 native state in the modern province of Yunnan, Tang period
Northern Wei 北魏 Chinese dynasty founded by the Taɣbač tribe
Nüzhen 女真 Chinese name for the Jurchens
O [top]
Oirats 斡亦剌 steppe tribe, also called Dzungars
Okinawa see Ryūkyū
Onggirats see Qonggirads 弘吉剌
Ölöds see Oirats
Önggüds 汪古 steppe tribe
P [top]
Paekche 百濟 see Korea
Parhae Korean reading of Bohai 渤海
Parthia see Anxi 安息
Pu native tribes living in the middle Yangtze region, Zhou period
Puyŏ Korean reading of Fuyu 夫余
Pyu, state in Myanmar see Biao
Q [top]
Qarakhans 黑汗 Turkish states in Eastern Turkestan
Qarluqs Turkish tribe
Qiang common designation for Tangutan peoples
Qibi 契苾 Turkish tribe, Tang period
Qidan 契丹 Chinese name for the Kitans
Qiemo 且末 city-state of the Silk Road
Qirqizes Turkish tribe
Qiuci 龜茲 city-state of the Silk Road
Qule 渠勒 city-state of the Silk Road
Quli 渠犁 city-state of the Silk Road
R [top]
Rong generic designation for nomad peoples of the west
Ronglu 戎盧 city-state of the Silk Road
Rouran 柔然 proto-Turkish tribe, Han to Northern Dynasties period
Rouzhi see Yuezhi 月氏
Ruoqiang 婼羌 city-state of the Silk Road
Ryūkyū island kingdom in the Eastern Sea
S [top]
Sai 塞 Chinese name for the Sakas
Sakas Indo-European people in western China, Han period
Scythians erroneous Western term for Yuezhi 月氏 or Tokharians
Shache 莎車 city-state of the Silk Road
Shan native tribe in the hilly north of modern Myanmar
Shanguo 山國 city-state of the Silk Road
Shanshan 鄯善 city-state of the Silk Road
Shatuo Turks 沙陀突厥
Shendu 身毒 (Chinese name for India) see Tianzhu 天竺
Shiguo 石國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Shiguo 史國 state of the Soghdiana, Tang period
Shiwei 室韋 people of northeast China
Shu native state in modern Sichuan, Zhou period
Shule 疏勒 city-state of the Silk Road
Silla 新羅 see Korea
Soghdiana 粟特 region in southern Kirgistan and northern Afghanistan
Sumendala 蘇門答臘 Chinese name for Sumatera
Sushen 肅慎 tribe in northeast China, Zhou period
Sute 粟特 see Soghdiana
Syr-Tarduš 薛延陀 Turkish tribe
T [top]
Tabghač European form of Taɣbač
Taɣbač tribe of the Xianbei, founders of the Northern Wei empire
Tanguts 黨項 tribes related to the Tibetans, founders of the Western Xia empire
Tatars Chinese designation for the Mongols after the Yuan period
Tatars European name for the Manchus
Tianfang 天方 Chinese name for Mecca
Tianzhu 天竺 Chinese name for India
Tibet 吐藩/西藏
Tiele 鐵勒 Chinese name for the Tölöš
Tölöš Turkish tribe
Tuoba 拓跋 Chinese name for the Taɣbačs
Tokhara 吐火羅 region in modern Kazakhstan and Afghanistan inhabited by the Tokharians
Tokharians see Yuezhi 月氏
Tubo 吐藩 ancient state in Tibet, Tang period
Tufan 吐藩 erroneously for Tubo
Tujue 突厥 Chinese name for the Turks
Türgiš Turkish tribe
Tuqishi 突騎施 Chinese name for the Türgiš
Turkestan, Eastern or Chinese T. (Xinjiang 新疆)
Turks
Tuguhun erroneously for Tuyuhun 吐谷渾
Turfan 吐魯番 see also Cheshi 車師 and Xizhou 西州
Turpan see Turfan 吐魯番
Tuyuhun 吐谷渾 Tangutan tribe in the region of modern Gansu and Qinghai, Tang period
U [top]
Uyghurs Turkish tribes
see Wensu 溫宿
V [top]
Vietnam 越南 (Việt Nam)
W [top]
Wa 倭 ancient Chinese designation of the Japanese
Wala 瓦剌 Chinese name of the Oirats
Wanggu 汪古 Chinese name of the Önggüds
Weili 尉犁 city-state of the Silk Road
Weitou 尉頭 city-state of the Silk Road
Weiwu'r 維吾爾 modern Chinese name of the Uyghurs
Weixu 危須 city-state of the Silk Road
Wensu 溫宿 city-state of the Silk Road
Western Xia 西夏 Chinese-style dynasty founded by Tanguts
White Huns see Hephthalites
Woyila 斡亦剌 Chinese name of the Oirats
Wu native state in modern Zhejiang and Jiangsu, Zhou period
Wugu 烏古 steppe tribe, Liao and Jin periods
Wuji 勿吉 alternative transcription of Mohe 靺鞨
Wuhuan 烏桓 steppe tribe in northeast China, Han period
Wulei 烏壘 city-state of the Silk Road
Wusun 烏孫 steppe tribe in northwest China, Han period
X [top]
Xi tribe of northeast China, Tang period
Xianbei 鮮卑 proto-Turkish tribe, Northern Dynasties period
Xianluo 暹羅 Chinese name for Siam, modern Thailand
Xiaowan 小宛 city-state of the Silk Road
Xilan 錫蘭 Chinese name for Ceylon, modern Sri Lanka
Xinjiang 新疆 Eastern or Chinese Turkestan
Xinluo 新羅 Chinese reading for Silla, a kingdom in ancient Korea
Xiongnu 匈奴 steppe tribe
Xixia 西夏 (Western Xia) Chinese-style dynasty founded by Tanguts
Xueyantuo 薛延陀 Chinese name for Syr-Tarduš
Y [top]
Yalu 啞魯 Chinese name for Aru in Sumatera
Yanqi 焉耆 city-state of the Silk Road
Yarkant see Shache 莎車
Yarkhoto see Cheshi 車師
Yeda 嚈噠 see Hephthalites
Yengisar see Wulei 烏壘
Yi generic term for eastern barbarians, later for barbarians in general, and especially for those arriving from the sea
Yili Bali 亦力把里 (Ili Balik, Ili Baliq) state in Eastern Turkestan, 14th-16th cent.
Yili 伊犁 (Ili)
Yilou 挹婁 Tungusic tribe in northeast China
Yue native state in modern Zhejiang, Zhou period
Yue 越, Bai Yue 百越 "Hundred Yue" native tribes inhabiting southern China
Yuezhi 月氏 Tokharians, Indo-European people in western China
Yumi 扜彌 city-state of the Silk Road
Yutian 于闐 city-state of the Silk Road
Z [top]
Zhancheng 占城 Chinese name for Champa, a state in modern southern Vietnam and Cambodia
Zhenla 真臘 Chinese name for a state in Cambodia
Zhunga'r 準噶爾 Chinese name for the Dzungars or Oirats
Zubu 阻卜 Mongolian tribe, alternative name for Tatars
Zufa'r 祖法兒 Chinese name for Dhofar in Arabia