Thursday, January 08, 2009

What is Chinese (Han) Traditional Costume?

Well, we know that the above costumes are traditional Malay & Indian costume. So, What about Chinese? I bet most of you will say Chinese traditional costume is this

Am I right? Sure a lot of people will say that Chinese traditional costumes are qi pao (旗袍)& ma gua (马褂) but are you really sure it is?
Basically, qi pao & ma gua are of Manchu origin. So who is this Manchu people? The Manchu people (满族) are a Tungusic people who originated in Manchuria (today's Northeastern China). During their rise in the seventeenth century, with the help of Ming rebels, they conquered the Ming Dynasty and founded the Qing Dynasty, which ruled China until its abolition in 1911 after the Xinhai Revolution, which established a republican government in its place.
Most of the Chinese in South East Asia is of Han origin. As long people within the Great Wall is consider Han. So, what do Han costume looks like? Well, it looks like this

This is the true traditional costume for Han Chinese. Beautiful right? But why always the girls costume looks great?Zzz
No matter what, I'm not here to spread Han chauvinism. I'm here just to clear some misunderstanding that most people had & to correct what most people perceive as right. Hope everybody learn something new.

I think you will also be interested in this too(more details given & much more eleborated): Do You Know That Cheongsam Is Not Han Chinese Traditional Clothing? & An Ilustrated History on the Rise & Fall of the Chinese Civilisation - From Ming Dynasty to Early Qing Dynasty 


Teddy said...


hahah.. I din expect this from u lor!

u look so westernized!!

yet u still kno things about our Chinese Culture.. hehe..

Actually, we, chinese have 5000 years of history and culture..

each dynasty will have their own traditional dress/costumes..

so, our costumes are not restricted to only the Han Dynasty people's costume.. hehe...

Kanasaikia said...

Do you know that Japanese & Korean costume is actually modification of Han costume?

Haha, don't know le. Actually the Chinese culture influence a lot of their culture that even costume is nearly the same.

Yes, every dynasty has its own costume but the basic design is the same for 4700 years because most dynasty is rule by the Han.

Even the Mongol didn't interfere with the wearing of Chinese when they rule.

Only when the Manchu who founded the Qing that they enact a law to force Han to cut their hair & dorn their costume. If not, your head will have to roll on the floor.

But then, now there is no restriction on what you wear. Wear whatever you like as long you happy. But as for me, if given a chance, I will wear the Han costume because I'm Han Chinese :D

Teddy said...



Kanasaikia said...

Haha! I may look westernise but my core is not.

The Korean stuffs that you said I knew about it for sometime already.

What to do. Last time China big taikor ma. Of coz must learn from the pro. LoL

Angela M. said...

Well, I think your question isn't asked correctly. Who's Chinese? Is Manchurian not Chinese? I must say that though Han is the an major ethnic group of Chinese community, Han doesn't equal Chinese. So asking what is a traditional Chinese costume is like asking what is a traditional Canadian costume. Manchurian costume can be one of the traditional Chinese costume. However, to most Chinese, since a majority of them are Han, Manchurian Qi Pao isn't their traditional costume. I must say it's sad many Han have forgotten their traditions.

Angela M. said...

pardon me. *blush* my fault for not reading closely. You were asking what is the Han Chinese costume. forget about me comment above. I was just annoyed by some people's hostility towards Qi Pao. *slipping away*.... >->