Cui (surname)

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RomanizationMandarin: Cui (Pinyin)
Ts'ui (Wade-Giles), Tsui (Wade-Giles)
Anglicized: Tsway
Korean: Choi
Cyrillic: Tsoi
Cantonese: Chui (Hong Kong), Choi (Macao, Malaysia)
Vietnamese: Thoi

Cui (Chinese: ; pinyin: Cuī; Wade–Giles: Ts'ui), alternatively spelled Tsui or Tsway, is one of the 100 most common surnames in China, with around 0.28% of the Chinese population having the surname (around 3.4 million in 2002).[1] It is also one of the most common surnames in Korea, with around 4.7% of the population having the surname in South Korea (2.4 million in 2013).[2]

In China, Cui is commonly found in Shandong and Henan, as well as provinces in the north-east and other areas of China, such as Heilongjiang, Liaoning, Hebei, Jiangsu, Shanxi, and Jilin.[1] It is romanized as Chui in Hong Kong (Cantonese), Choi in Macao (Cantonese) and Malaysia, Choi in Korean, Thoi in Vietnamese and Tsoi in Cyrillic.


One origin of the surname came from descendants of someone who originally held the Jiang (姜) surname in the state of Qi, founded by Jiang Ziya (姜子牙). A grandson of Jiang Ziya named Jizi (季子), an heir apparent, chose to relinquish his claim to the throne in favour of his brother Shuyi (叔乙), and went to live in the Cui estate (崔邑, in present-day Shandong). His descendants later adopted Cui as their surname.[3]

During the Tang dynasty the Li family of Zhaojun 赵郡李氏, the Cui family of Boling 博陵崔氏, the Cui family of Qinghe 清河崔氏, the Lu family of Fanyang 范陽盧氏, the Zheng family of Xingyang 荥阳郑氏, the Wang family of Taiyuan 太原王氏, and the Li family of Longxi 隴西李氏 were the seven noble families between whom marriage was banned by law.[4] Moriya Mitsuo wrote a history of the Later Han-Tang period of the Taiyuan Wang. Among the strongest families was the Taiyuan Wang.[5] The prohibition on marriage between the clans issued in 659 by the Gaozong Emperor was flouted by the seven families since a woman of the Boling Cui married a member of the Taiyuan Wang, giving birth to the poet Wang Wei.[6] He was the son of Wang Chulian who in turn was the son of Wang Zhou.[7] The marriages between the families were performed clandestinely after the prohibition was implemented on the seven families by Gaozong.[8] Their status as "Seven Great surnames" became known during Gaozong's rule.[9]

The surname is one of the five surnames, now the most common surnames in Korea, closely associated with the six villages that formed the earliest state of Silla.[10]

Many non-Han Chinese groups adopted the surname Cui. During the Qing Dynasty, the Manchu clans Cuigiya Hala (sinicized as 崔佳氏) and Cuimulu Hala (崔穆鲁氏) simplified their names to Cui.[1][11] The Manchu Cuigiya 崔佳氏 clan claimed that a Han Chinese founded their clan.[12] A Mongol clan Cuijuk Hala (崔珠克氏) also adopted this surname during the Qing Dynasty. The surname may also be found amongst the Tujia (土家) people in Hunan, the Yi (彝) people in Yunnan, as well as the Mongols and Hui (回) people.[13]

List of notable people[edit]


  • Cui Yuan (Han dynasty) (77–142 or 78–143 AD), a minor figure from the Han Dynasty
  • Cui Yan (163 - 216), an official from late Eastern Han Dynasty
  • Cui Hao (d. 450), a statesman of the 5th century, Qinghe Cui family
  • Cui Renshi (c. 580 - 649), a chancellor during the Tang dynasty
  • Cui Dunli (596 - 656), a general and diplomat during the Tang dynasty
  • Cui Zhiwen (627-683), a chancellor during the Tang dynasty
  • Cui Shi (671-713), an official of the Tang Dynasty, grandson of Cui Renshi
  • Cui Cha (d. 689), a chancellor of the Tang Dynasty
  • Cui Hao (poet) (704–754), a poet
  • Cui Yuan (705–768) (705-768), an official of the Chinese dynasty Tang Dynasty
  • Cui Riyong (673-722), an official of the Tang Dynasty
  • Cui Shenji, a chancellor during the Tang dynasty
  • Cui Xuanwei (638-706), a chancellor during the Tang dynasty
  • Cui Bai (mid 11th century), a Song dynasty painter
  • Cui Zizhong (? - 1644), a painter during the Ming Dynasty
  • Cui Yuanzong, chancellor during the Tang dynasty


Fictional People[edit]

See also[edit]

  • Choi (Korean version of the same surname)


  1. ^ a b c 袁义达, 张诚 (2002). 中国姓氏: 群体遗传和人口分布. East China Normal University Press. p. 99.
  2. ^ "Social changes reflected in statistics on Korean family names". Korea Beat. April 26, 2013.
  3. ^ 夏炎 (2004). 中古世家大族清河崔氏研究. 天津古籍出版社. pp. 26–28.
  4. ^ p. 67.
  5. ^ A Zürcher (Milchfecker): Eine nicht alltägliche Stimme aus der Emmentaler-Käsereipraxis. Brill Archive. 1830. pp. 351–. GGKEY:WD42J45TCZZ.
  6. ^ Wei Wang; Tony Barnstone; Willis Barnstone; Haixin Xu (1991). Laughing Lost in the Mountains: Poems of Wang Wei. UPNE. pp. xxvii–xxviii. ISBN 978-0-87451-564-0.
  7. ^ Jingqing Yang (2007). The Chan Interpretations of Wang Wei's Poetry: A Critical Review. Chinese University Press. pp. 16–. ISBN 978-962-996-232-6.
  8. ^ A Study of Yuan Zhen's Life and Verse 809--810: Two Years that Shaped His Politics and Prosody. ProQuest. 2008. pp. 65–. ISBN 978-0-549-80334-8.
  9. ^ William H. Nienhauser (2010). Tang Dynasty Tales: A Guided Reader. World Scientific. pp. 78–. ISBN 978-981-4287-28-9.
  10. ^ Mark Peterson (2009). Brief History: Brief History of Korea. Facts on File. p. 54. ISBN 978-0816050857.
  11. ^ 巫声惠 (2000). 中華姓氏大典. 河北人民出版社. p. 260.
  12. ^ 《清朝通志·氏族略·满洲八旗姓》
  13. ^ 谢钧祥 (2007). 新编百家姓. 中州古籍出版社.
  14. ^ "Marcus Tsui". Retrieved 2015-11-30.
  15. ^ "Snowden YouTube Film Delivers Digital Snapshot". Variety. Retrieved 2015-11-30.

External links[edit]