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Chinese in China tend to romanize their names in pinyin
(Chinese phonetic transcription).
People in Taiwan spell their names according to the Wade-Giles system.
Hua Ren or Tang Ren in South East Asia romanize their names according
to their dialectal pronuciations.
My surname Chung is in Hakka.
The Cantonese spell it as Chang
In Hokkien it is Tay.
Teochew people call it Tey.
Zheng4 is in pinyin.
What a mess.
So far there is not a single book that has completely listed all the
Chinese surnames in it, as more and more surnames are created yearly.
(1) Before the Spring and Autumn Period (722BC to 481BC) during the
Zhou Dynasty (1134BC to 250BC) there were only 72 surnames.
(2) There were 130 surnames during the Han4 Dynasty (206BC to 220AD).
(3) They were increased to 193 during the Tang2 Dynasty (618AD to 907AD).
(4) 438 surnames were recorded during the Song4 Dynasty (960AD to 1279AD).
(5) According to the historical documents during the Yuan2 Dynasty
(1271AD to 1368AD) there were 3736 surnames at that time.
(6) The literary records, during the Ming2 Dynasty (1368AD to 1644AD),
showed a total of 4657 surnames in the land of what we now call China.
China is a country consisting of over 60 nationalities. Only Han4
and a few nationalities are using family surnames. Majority of them are
without surnames. They just call themselves so and so son of so and so,
like many Muslim countries. They do not have surnames. You will notice
that a grandfather and a grandson have not had a common name.
For example the Malays in Malaysia;
Ismail son of Ali.
Ibraham son of Ismail.
Ali is the grandfather of Ibraham.
Just like those names in the bible without surnames.
xxx son of xxx
Even nowadays, in China, when someone from a minority national who has no
surname, wants to adopt one, he might just use his name as his surname.
He would then surname his children his name. This name he adopted might
not be recorded in any book. Thus a new surname is created.
CHUNG Yoon-Ngan. firstname.lastname@example.org