|History of China|
|Neolithic c. 8500 – c. 2070 BC|
|Xia dynasty c. 2070 – c. 1600 BC|
|Shang dynasty c. 1600 – c. 1046 BC|
|Zhou dynasty c. 1046 – 256 BC|
|Spring and Autumn|
|Qin dynasty 221–206 BC|
|Han dynasty 206 BC – 220 AD|
|Three Kingdoms 220–280|
|Wei, Shu and Wu|
|Jin dynasty 265–420|
|Eastern Jin||Sixteen Kingdoms|
|Northern and Southern dynasties|
|Sui dynasty 581–618|
|Tang dynasty 618–907|
|(Second Zhou dynasty 690–705)|
|Five Dynasties and
|Northern Song||Western Xia|
|Southern Song||Jin dynasty|
|Yuan dynasty 1271–1368|
|Ming dynasty 1368–1644|
|Qing dynasty 1644–1912|
|Republic of China 1912–1949|
|People's Republic of China 1949–present|
In Southern Chinese folklore, the Five Elders of Shaolin (Chinese: 少林五祖; pinyin: Shàolín wǔ zǔ; Jyutping: Siu3 lam4 ng5 zou2), also known as the Five Generals are the survivors of one of the destructions of the Shaolin temple by the Qing Dynasty, variously said to have taken place in 1647, in 1674 or in 1732.
The original Shaolin Monastery was built on the north side of Shaoshi Mountain, the central peak of Mount Song, one of the Sacred Mountains of China, located in the Henan Province, by Emperor Xiaowen of the Northern Wei Dynasty in 477. At various times throughout history, the monastery has been destroyed (burned down) for political reasons, and rebuilt many times.
A number of traditions also make reference to a Southern Shaolin Monastery located in Fujian province. Associated with stories of the supposed burning of Shaolin by the Qing government and with the tales of the Five Elders, this temple, sometimes known by the name Changlin, is often claimed to have been either the target of Qing forces or a place of refuge for monks displaced by attacks on the original Shaolin Monastery. Besides the debate over the historicity of the Qing-era destruction, it is currently unknown whether there was a true southern temple, with several locations in Fujian given as the location for the monastery. Fujian does have a historic monastery called Changlin, and a monastery referred to as a "Shaolin cloister" has existed in Fuqing, Fujian, since the Song Dynasty, but whether these have an actual connection to the Henan monastery or a martial tradition is still unknown.
The Five Elders of Shaolin
Within many martial arts circles, these original Five Elders of Shaolin are said to be
|Traditional Chinese||Simplified Chinese||Mandarin pinyin||Cantonese Yale|
|Ji Sin (Gee Sin)||至善禪師||至善禅师||Zhì Shàn Chán Shī||Ji Sin Sim Si||Also transliterated as Ji Sin Sim Si, literally, Chan (Zen) teacher" Speculated to be also known as Chi Thien Su.|
|Ng Mui||五梅大師||五梅大师||Wǔ Méi Dà Shī||Ng Mui Daai Si||Noted for Ng Mui Kuen, Wing Chun Kuen, Dragon style, White Crane, and Five-Pattern Hung Kuen|
|Bak Mei (Pei Mei)||白眉道人||白眉道人||Bái Méi Dào Rén||Bak Mei Dou Yan||Literally "Taoist with White Eyebrows" Speculated to be also known as Chu Long Tuyen.|
|Fung Dou Dak||馮道德||冯道德||Féng Dàodé||Fung Dou Dak||Taoist Founder of Bak Fu Pai.|
|Miu Hin||苗顯||苗显||Miáo Xiǎn||Miu Hin||an "unshaved" (lay) Shaolin disciple|
The Five Family Elders
The founders of the five major family styles of Southern Chinese martial arts, were all students of Gee Sin (see above), are also sometimes referred to as the Five Elders. This has caused some confusion.
|Common English||Traditional Chinese||Simplified Chinese||Mandarin pinyin||Cantonese Yale|
|Hung Hei (Goon)||洪熙官||洪熙官||Hóng Xīguān||Hung Hei (Goon)||founder of Hung Ga|
|Lau Saam Ngan||劉三眼||刘三眼||Liú Sānyǎn||Lau Saam Ngan||literally "Three-Eyes" Lau; founder of Lau Gar|
|Choi Gau Yi||蔡九儀||蔡九仪||Cài Jiǔyí||Choi Gau Yi||founder of Choi Gar|
|Lei Yau Saan||李友山||李友山||Lǐ Yǒushān||Lei Yau Saan||founder of Lei Gar; teacher of Choy Li Fut founder Chan Heung|
|Mok Ching Giu||莫清矯||莫清矫||Mò Qīngjiǎo||Mok Ching Giu||founder of Mok Gar|
- Shahar, Meir (December 2001). "Ming-Period Evidence of Shaolin Martial Practice". Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies. Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies. 61 (2): 359–413. doi:10.2307/3558572. ISSN 0073-0548. JSTOR 3558572.
- Title: Martial Arts of the World [2 volumes]: An Encyclopedia of History and Innovation, Thomas A. Green (Editor), Joseph R. Svinth (Editor) Page. 94, Hardcover: 663 pages,Publisher: ABC-CLIO (June 11, 2010), Language: English, ISBN 1598842439, ISBN 978-1598842432
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-11-12. Retrieved 2012-10-16.
- Author: Meir Shahar, Publisher: University of Hawaii Press; 1 edition (January 1, 2008), Language: English, ISBN 082483349X, ISBN 978-0824833497