Fuzhou people

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Fuzhounese people
  • 福州人
  • 福州儂 (Hók-ciŭ-nè̤ng)
  • 十邑儂
Life and light for woman (1873) (14763995591).jpg
Hockchew women in Bible Women's Training School during a women's class in Fuzhou, 1873.
Total population
Regions with significant populations
Fuzhou dialect and Fuqing dialect
Predominantly Mahayana Buddhism and Chinese folk religions (including Taoism, Confucianism, ancestral worship and others), with many non religious. Minority: Christianity
Related ethnic groups
Fuzhou Americans, Putian people, Hoklo people, Northern Min speakers, Ancient Minyue people† and other Han Chinese

The people of Fuzhou (Chinese: 福州人; Foochow Romanized: Hók-ciŭ-nè̤ng), also known as Fuzhounese, Foochowese, Hokchew, Hokchia, Hokchiu, Sei Ay people (十邑人), Eastern Min or Mindong usually refers to people who originate from Fuzhou region and the Mindong region, adjacent Gutian County, Pingnan County, in Fujian province of China and in the Matsu Islands of Taiwan (Republic of China). Fuzhounese are Han Chinese people and are a part of Min-speaking group, who speaks Eastern Min or specifically Fuzhou dialect. There is also a significant overseas Foochowese population, particularly distributed in Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, United States (Fuzhou Americans), Japan, United Kingdom, etc.[2]

Despite their small population size, Fuzhounese people have produced a large number of achievements in borh academic and science fields, 17 Zhuangyuan scholars are of ethnic Fuzhounese ancestry and famous mathematicians and scientists such as Zhang Yuzhe (the father of modern Chinese astronomy), Guo Kexin (the main pioneer of electron microscopy of China), Chih-Tang Sah, Hsien Wu, Guo Kexin and Min Zhuo are Fuzhounese too.

Native location of Fuzhounese people (includes Gutian County and Pingnan County which are unrepresented in this map.


Fuzhou dialect is a tonal language that has extensive sandhi rules in the initials, rimes, and tones. These complicated rules make Fuzhou dialect one of the most difficult Chinese varieties.[3]

During the Second World War, some Japanese scholars became passionate about studying Fuzhou dialect, believing that it could be beneficial to the rule of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. One of their most famous works was the Japanese-Chinese Translation: Fuzhou Dialect (日華對譯: 福州語) published in 1940 in Taipei, in which katakana was used to represent Fuzhou pronunciation.

Many non-speakers have noticed on the 'cuteness' of Fuzhou dialect when they listened to it.

Emigration and diaspora[edit]

A native Fuzhou detective, 1898.


Fuzhou's history of emigration began since the Ming dynasty with Zheng He's voyages overseas. As the result of immigration of Fuzhouese to southeast Asia, Fuzhou dialect is found in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. The city of Sibu of Malaysia is called "new Fuzhou" due to a large wave of Fuzhounese immigration in the early 1900s. They are referred to as "Hockchiu" or "Hokchew" in Singapore and Malaysia.[4]

Southeast Asia[edit]

The Hockchius and Hockchias migrated to Nanyang (South-East Asia) in smaller numbers compared to the Hokkien, Cantonese, hakkas and Hainanese but achieved remarkable success. Amongst others, Robert Kuok (Hockchiu) rose to become the "Sugar King" of Malaysia and is currently ranked the richest man in south-east Asia[5] whereas Liem Sioe Liong (Sudono Salim) who was of Hockchia origin, was once the richest man in Indonesia, controlling a vast empire in the industry of flour, cement and food manufacturing.[6] The famous leader of the Malayan Communist Party, Chin Peng was also Hockchia.[7]

United States[edit]

Fuzhounese people first started immigrating to America during the late Qing dynasty. Some of these immigrants were students who, after completing their studies returned to back to their fatherland (Fuzhou).

After the lifting of emigration restriction from the People's Republic of China in the 1980s, a small wave of Fuzhounese settled in America. These new Fuzhounese immigrants set up their own separated communities such as "Little Fuzhou" in Manhattan, away from other non-linguistically related Chinese people.

Notable Fuzhounese people[edit]

Scientists, mathematicians and inventors[edit]

Politicians and revolutionaries[edit]

Writers and poets[edit]



  • Wu Qingyuan, a Chinese Weiqi/Go player, considered by many players to be the greatest player of the game in the 20th century and one of the greatest of all time.
  • Jahja Ling, a famous Orchestra conductor.
  • Lin Huiyin, a female Chinese architect and wife of architect Liang Sicheng.
  • Lin Yaohua famed Chinese sociologist and anthropologist.
  • Nicholas Kao Se Tseien , the oldest living Catholic priest in China and Hong Kong.
  • Cheng Nan-jung, a Taiwanese publisher and pro-democracy activist.
  • Ludi Lin, an actor who starred in the 2017 Power Rangers.
  • George Li, creator of MSG.
  • Scottie Li, super fast eater.
  • Mikey Li, famous Shark expert.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Peoples Listing: MinDong People". Joshua Project. Retrieved 2009-10-18.
  2. ^ 福州市志(第八册). 方志出版社. December 2000. ISBN 7-80122-605-4.
  3. ^ Khoon Choy Lee. Pioneers of Modern China: Understanding the Inscrutable Chinese. World Scientific. p. 20. ISBN 98-127-0090-0.
  4. ^ Chinese Overseas: Comparative Cultural Issues. Hong Kong University Press. p. 92.
  5. ^ Leo Suryadinata (2006). Southeast Asia's Chinese Businesses in an Era of Globalization: Coping with the Rise of China. Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 184. ISBN 98-123-0401-0.
  6. ^ Timothy Brook & Hy V. Luong (1999). Culture and Economy: The Shaping of Capitalism in Eastern Asia. University of Michigan Press. p. 163. ISBN 04-720-8598-0.
  7. ^ Jessieca Leo (2015). Global Hakka: Hakka Identity in the Remaking. BRILL. p. 291. ISBN 90-043-0027-9.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ "邓叔群". dangan.njau.cn.
  10. ^ Genius At Play: The Curious Mind of John Horton Conway. p. 62.