Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Discussions on the Hokkien (Minnan) language.
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amhoanna
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Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by amhoanna » Tue Jul 31, 2012 5:16 pm

Here's a question for Ah-bin and others. What languages did Mạc Cửu 莫玖 (鄚玖) of Cancau 港口 fame speak? Seems sure enough that he came from 雷州海康. The book SAIGON: A HISTORY says many times that he was "Cantonese"...

He brought many countrymen when he emigrated. The complete absence of 雷州 types of "Hoklo" in the diaspora seems to suggest that maybe 雷州 was fully or mostly Canto-speaking 400 years ago.
Ah-bin
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by Ah-bin » Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:36 pm

They may just be mistranslating 粵人 or 廣東人 (indicating provincial origin) as "Cantonese", that is my guess.

As far as I know, the Min speakers started going down the coast to Lui-chiu during Song times already. The founders of the Trần dynasty were also from Fukien, (a fact that seems to be absent from the English Wikipedia page for some reason, but is available in the Chinese, Vietnamese, and Japanese pages). There was a lot of migration down the coast and over to the Red River Plain at that time.

The people the Min speakers displaced or replaced or intermarried with in Lui-chiu probably spoke a Kadai language but I am not sure whether it was closer to Hloi or to Ong-Be or Nong. One word of the original language was known to the compilers of the 太平寰宇機 (T'ai p'ing huan yü chi) in the tenth century. This was the "barbarian"word for "medicine" which they transliterated as 蛇. The T'ang reading of this word had a voiced consonant and sound like "jaa" - a common word for medicine in many Kadai languages.
amhoanna
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by amhoanna » Mon Aug 06, 2012 2:55 pm

Thanks, Ah-bin. Interesting stuff.

There seem to be close to no Luiciu 雷州 folk in modern-day Vietnam -- apparently not enough to support a persatuan. Then again, the persatuans seem to be a sinkheh 新客 thing anyway.

Mạc Cửu crossed the seas at the age of 17. It's interesting that he was a Ming loyalist born ~7 years after the Ming had fallen in Beijing! Then again, an ROC loyalist born on Taiwan would be the same thing. I'm guessing he spoke good Teochew, Hokkien and poss. even Canto in addition to his native tongue(s) and Khmae and most likely some Vietnamese. The fact that his realm became known as Cancau 港口 does suggest that the lion's share of his people were Hokloid like himself.
amhoanna
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by amhoanna » Mon Aug 06, 2012 2:56 pm

A shame that so little has been published about the languages and dialects of the Luiciu area. I wonder what kind of Tai-Kadai substrate they have, and how thick.
Ah-bin
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by Ah-bin » Tue Aug 07, 2012 10:16 am

There was a French scholar called Leonard Aurousseau who said that there was some big settlement of Min people much further back than the Song, and he said that they had settled all along the coast of the Red River Plain.

There are a few pages in one book that I copied that had something about the pre-Chinese inhabitants and their languages, noting that the Hloi word for village (Nam, I think) was preserved in the some of the place names in the south of the peninsula with. It will be in a pile of papers in my old office, but I believe I can track it down.

粵西閩語雷州話研究 by 林倫倫 has a few examples of Kadai vocabulary in Lui-chiu, for instance every day is "ang-ziek" where the ang is the Tai for "every" and the ziek is 日. "Nong" for child which means "little brother" in Tai (that one is found all over Kwangsi) and "tau" for "time" which is shared with some varieties of Hokkien, and probably got into the language in the east.

I have found that is one of the biggest problems in determining the nature of the Tai substratum is determining where the words were borrowed. The word for "market" for example 墟 "hue" (also found in Chiang-chiu as "hi" is supposed to have a Tai origin, but I believe that the word was probably borrowed (or retained) in the Canton area, and then later spread to the west as people began to speak Sinitic languages there. I found this out by comparing the word in Sinitic dialects with those in Tai dialects spoken in neighbouring districts. the tonal and phonological class of the word in Sinitic dialects was consistent over all dialects, whereas the neighbouring Tai dialects had the same word but the tone and phonological shape varied according to Tai rules, and was often quite different from the forms in Sinitic. This shows, I think, that the word 墟 was not borrowed from the local people of each district, but was brought in with Sinitic-speaking settlers. If the word corresponded in tone and phonology in neighbouring languages, then I would guess that it was borrowed locally in each district.
amhoanna
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by amhoanna » Mon Aug 13, 2012 11:24 am

Thanks, Ah-bin. Very interestnig stuff.

It's interesting that there was contact between Proto-Hoklo or something upstream from that and Tai-Kadai. I recall reading in a book by 湯錦台 that the last un-Sinicized groups in what is today southern Hokkien were Hmong-Mien types, who were relatively late arrivals themselves compared to other groups that were there earlier and fell under the 百越 umbrella. But I forget what he said about these groups that were there earlier.

I've started learning Khmae and once again the uncanny semantic and syntactic similarities to Hoklo are rearing their pretty heads.

On the other topic, it would seem that migration to Luiciu and Hainam vs the Red River Delta ... was really just one and the same to the average "Hokkien": sailing west along the coast. Never saw it that way before. Seems like the numbers going to the Red R. Delta were substantial too. This might help account for the uncanny resemblances between Hoklo and VNese too.

As I learn Siamese and VNese, it seems that learning Siamese uses both my Cantophone and Hoklophone minds, but more of the former, while learning Vietnamese fires the Hoklophone mind much, much more.

Would be interested in anything U have to share about Luiciu and Kwongsai in the future.
Ah-bin
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by Ah-bin » Mon Aug 13, 2012 1:28 pm

That could well be the case, but I doubt they were living in the areas that are now Chiangchiu and Amoy, as I know of hardly any Miao/Hmong-Yao/Mien loans into Southern Min, whereas there are a number of Kadai loans (such as kha for leg). The word Chinese writers used for these people was 蠻獠, which could mean just about anything.

In Hakka on the other hand, there are supposed to be many of these loans, and there are people officially classified as She 畲 (also a Hmong-Mien language) who speak a kind of Hakka very rich in loans from Hmong-Mien languages. I have a few articles on this by Deng Xiaohua (forgotten the characters and don't have the papers to hand), a lecturer at Amoy University, that show the Hmong/Mien substratum in She Hakka of various areas. The two books 畲族語言 and 貴溪漳坪畲話研究 describe these languages in detail, they are spoken in north-eastern Kwongtung and south-eastern Jiangxi. There are also some She who speak a kind of northern Min with old She words mixed in somewhere around Gutian, I think, I forget.

Zhangping she 漳坪畲話 has words like "vo" for "call", "loeh" for "kill", "lieu" for "house" and many other odd ones that are meant to be residues of the original language. for me it ranks with Fuchuan Jiuduhua 富川九都話 as an amazing outlier that looks very little like any other Chinese that i know.
niuc
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by niuc » Sun Aug 19, 2012 3:47 pm

Amhoanna, Ah-bin, thanks for sharing about these topics, all very interesting! (Though I hardly know anything about these!:P)

Do you guys have a list of Hokkien words loaned from Kadai/Hmong/百越 etc?

Was Tai-Kadai part of 百越 while Hmong-Mien was not?

How different was (& is) Min/Hokloid people from Cantonese & Hakka (also Kadai/Hmong etc), other than the language used?

I used to wonder why Teochew word for "child" is nong-kiáⁿ, so this "nong" is related to "little brother" in Tai! :idea:
Ah-bin
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by Ah-bin » Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:23 am

Do you guys have a list of Hokkien words loaned from Kadai/Hmong/百越 etc?
Somewhere I have an article on it. It's Anne Yue-Hashimoto's 1976 "Southern Chinese dialects--the Tai connection," Computational Analysis of Asian and African Languages, Tokyo, No. 6, pp. 1-9. I don't have it here in the house with me though.

Kha for leg is one of them.

The hypothesis about Austroasiatic in Hokkien has been refuted by Laurent Sagart in a book called "The Peopling of East Asia", but I can't remember the details.
Was Tai-Kadai part of 百越 while Hmong-Mien was not?
Now you are asking a huge question. I would say 百越 referred to the people of a place who shared certain cultural features who lived in a certain defined area rather than any division based on language group. Old Chinese names didn't have much to do with what their referents thought of themselves, but had more to do with what the Chinese thought of them or stereotyped them. Chinese really had very little idea of what non-Chinese language group people belonged to in the past. There is no evidence that they cared in the slightest about this question. They only began to pay attention to how non-Chinese spoke in Ming times.
How different was (& is) Min/Hokloid people from Cantonese & Hakka (also Kadai/Hmong etc), other than the language used?
Different in what way? Lots of the things they do are the same. There were no names to distinguish them in ancient times. You were either a 人 (if your customs were similar enough to the person who wrote about you) or a "barbarian" 夷 Yi or 蠻 Man if you were not (there are other names too). That is the difference, as far as i can tell from seven years of looking at how Chinese refer to non-Chinese! If you paid your taxes and did corvee labour and obeyed the laws of the dynasty, you might end up as a 人 no matter what you spoke at home. If you spoke a kind of Chinese, but lived amongst people who did not, refused to pay your taxes or led a local uprising, you might end up called one of the barbarian names, sometimes you might be called both in two different texts.
niuc
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by niuc » Wed Aug 22, 2012 8:33 am

Firstly, I must correct my posting above that in Teochew a child is not nong-kiáⁿ but no-kiáⁿ (or nō-kiáⁿ). My Teochew friends do not know the meaning of "no"/"nō" there. I still think that it may be related to "nong".
Ah-bin wrote:
Was Tai-Kadai part of 百越 while Hmong-Mien was not?
Now you are asking a huge question. I would say 百越 referred to the people of a place who shared certain cultural features who lived in a certain defined area rather than any division based on language group. Old Chinese names didn't have much to do with what their referents thought of themselves, but had more to do with what the Chinese thought of them or stereotyped them.
Until now I am not sure who were 百越, which may not be so bad a situation due to the vagueness of the term as per your explanation above.
How different was (& is) Min/Hokloid people from Cantonese & Hakka (also Kadai/Hmong etc), other than the language used?
Different in what way? Lots of the things they do are the same. There were no names to distinguish them in ancient times. You were either a 人 (if your customs were similar enough to the person who wrote about you) or a "barbarian" 夷 Yi or 蠻 Man if you were not (there are other names too). That is the difference, as far as i can tell from seven years of looking at how Chinese refer to non-Chinese! If you paid your taxes and did corvee labour and obeyed the laws of the dynasty, you might end up as a 人 no matter what you spoke at home. If you spoke a kind of Chinese, but lived amongst people who did not, refused to pay your taxes or led a local uprising, you might end up called one of the barbarian names, sometimes you might be called both in two different texts.
Thanks. This is pretty similar to the concept of Romans (Greeks) vs Barbarian in (Eastern) Roman (Byzantine) Empire, imho. Actually I asked the question about Hokloid people etc because when we say the people in certain area were/are Cantonese or Min/Hokloid etc, was/is the language the sole determinant of that identity?
amhoanna
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by amhoanna » Sat Sep 08, 2012 7:42 am

when we say the people in certain area were/are Cantonese or Min/Hokloid etc, was/is the language the sole determinant of that identity?
For the first 300 yrs of Sino settlement in TW, foot-binding was THE marker btw Hakka and Hoklo. Meanwhile, dialect differences were the marker in bloody feuds btw Hoklos from different parts of Hoklistan.

I would say these kind of splits and oppositions were probably less marked in places where the tribes had come up together through time. Even in TW, there were places where Hoklos had stopped binding feet long before Japanese colonization. These were all in areas on the outskirts of Hakka country. http://blog.pixnet.net/Richter

All this recent stuff. It could get more interesting going back in time.

Religion is probably also a marker. Also livelihood. Also length of history in a given area. Poss. also looks, at one pt.
How different was (& is) Min/Hokloid people from Cantonese & Hakka (also Kadai/Hmong etc), other than the language used?
One way to answer this question is to dive into old-time works of scholarship. Another would be to visit the modern-day contact regions -- and there are many.

From TW, the data shows that nowadays, the avg foreign bride in Hoklo-dominant areas is Vietnamese, while she's Indonesian (Hakka) in some Hakka towns and PRC Chinese in places with concentrations of working-class ROC 49ers. http://blog.pixnet.net/Richter

Anecdotally, it all seems to fit to a tee. There is a natural, "tropical" flamboyance that the Hoklo Creoles (the "Tâi'oân lâng") and the (Southern) Vietnamese share ... which is a turn-off for the austere Hakka and the "modern-minded" 49ers.

Hakka and 49ers alike consider the Hoklo Creoles to be dirty, clannish, uncouth, lawless, unreliable, etc. Meanwhile, Creoles consider 49ers to be somewhat cold and distant...

The Straits stereotypes are probably well-known here too... But the "Chinese" identity trumps all in the Straits.

A Hakka taxi driver in KL told me that Hakka never let go of their ties to the motherland -- unlike Hokkiens and Teochews, who feel a deeper tie to their new home. This makes so much sense -- look at how entrenched and "ingrained" the Teochews are in central and eastern Thailand, Cambodia, and southern VN, country as well as city; look at Taiwanese Independence, a Hoklo movement; look at the Indonesian Hakka girls marrying Taiwanese Hakka, something that Teochews and Hokkiens in diaspora just would not go so far out of their way to do.

There are lots of Luiciu folk in the Pearl Delta, and from what they say about themselves, they sound much like country Creole Taiwanese: clannish and heavy on the 義.

It would be interesting to get around Luiciu, Hainam, and southern Kwongsai. This is a contact region to the bone. In northern Hainam there are entire counties made up mostly of an almost completely Sinicized group that speaks a heavily Sinicized Kadai language. The majority on the island is "Hokloid", but there are also groups speaking "unidentified Sinitic languages", most notably 儋州, once again the dominant language in its county.

Last, 19th century European travelers came up with some great insights, some of them not their own but, rather, things that everyone knew back then but that Chinese scholars might not've bothered to put on paper. For example, laborers in Hawai'i sourced out of Amoy were more belligerent than the ones from Canton. Or that Teochews were much more "fond of strangers" than Hokkiens despite the linguistic similarities. My personal experience bears this out too -- Teochew strangers are usually much friendlier than Hokkiens; Hokkiens need an introduction from a mutual friend, etc. I would add that Penang Hokkiens and country Creole Taiwanese are an exception to this rule, poss. b/c of their campuran with Teochews and "asli" Taiwanese, respectively.
Was Tai-Kadai part of 百越 while Hmong-Mien was not?

Now you are asking a huge question. I would say 百越 referred to the people of a place who shared certain cultural features
I echo Ah-bin's answer... I would add (although Ah-bin may or may not agree) that we should keep in mind that the linguistic situation might've looked real different at any point in the past, esp. way, way back. If modern linguists could take a time machine back to circa 500 AD, they might find many, many languages in tropical and subtropical Pacific Asia that wouldn't fit into any of the language families we know today. Yet the modern historical linguist has to deal with all these possibilities w/o the benefit of time travel and direct evidence.

So, for example, even a Tai-Kadai loan in Hoklo could've conceivably gotten in indirectly through one or more intermediary languages, and these "middle languages" may or may not have belonged to any of the language families we know today. It's possible that whole language families existed in the past that we don't know about. It's possible that some language died out on a houseboat (think Tanka) one night 120 years ago in a faraway bay on the coast of southern Qing China, which was the last representative of what had been a massive language family at one pt. The pt is that we can't know for sure.
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by niuc » Mon Sep 10, 2012 11:43 am

Thank you very much, Amhoanna, for the great explanation! 8)
Ah-bin
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Re: Mạc Cửu 莫玖 kóng mih gứbûn

Post by Ah-bin » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:57 pm

I found the list of Tai loans into Hokkien in one of may notebooks, but have lost it again. Here are a few I remembered from my last look.

Pái - a time
kha - leg/foot
Hi - a market (maybe Chiang-chiu only) this one is found all over Kwangtung and Kwangsi
Lut - to drop off
Thâ - to slaughter
Tâm - wet
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