A-Hmao in China

Joshua Project has identified the A-Hmao only in China





Largest Religion

Main Language



The A-Hmao are one of "close to a hundred distinctive subgroups of Miao in China alone, each speaking a slightly different dialect and maintaining its own traditional customs." These people call themselves A-Hmao. The Chinese and foreigners have traditionally called them Da Hua Miao (Big Flowery Miao). The "Big Flowery Miao" (A-Hmao) speak a completely different language from the "Small Flowery Miao" (Gha-Mu) who also live in Guizhou.

The Chinese officially label A-Hmao the Diandongbei (Northeast Yunnan) dialect of Miao. It is one of the "30-40 different Miao languages in China."


For centuries the A-Hmao lived in dire slavery to the Nosu Yi. The Nosu bullied the A-Hmao by seizing their land, taking slaves, and imposing unfair taxes on them. Nosu landowners customarily used the back of an A-Hmao slave to mount their horses. As recently as 80 years ago, the A-Hmao still practiced cannibalism. Samuel Pollard recorded in his diary, "After a fight, the warriors who are killed on either side are opened and their hearts removed these are cooked and eaten."


Before their mass conversion to Christianity, the A-Hmao were ensnared by a complex system of evil spirits they called bidlang. The people's immorality was "so bad that they could hardly be worse. There are no decent women among the Big Flowery Miao (A-Hmao)."


When missionary Samuel Pollard first arrived in 1904, he found the A-Hmao trapped in slavery to the Nosu and overwhelmed with poverty. Together with Francis Dymond he converted them to Christianity, invented an alphabet for their language, and taught them to read and write. Although a severe famine in 1918 left many A-Hmao believers "disenchanted with Christianity," Pollard baptized 10,000 A-Hmao believers, and before the mission was expelled from China, 80,000 had turned to Christ. Some estimate that as many as 80% of the A-Hmao today are Christians.


After the departure of the missionaries, the A-Hmao church stayed steadfast to Christ, despite sinister plots during the Cultural Revolution aimed at destroying their faith. During the 1940s the church experienced "a very serious process of retrogression and decay, which if not soon arrested will bring us back to our starting point again." The A-Hmao New Testament was printed in 1917; 50,000 copies were reprinted and sold out between 1983 and 1988. In 1974 many A-Hmao believers were massacred by Chinese troops when they secretly met for prayer in a cave at Xinglongchang. Instead of destroying the church, the massacre caused a doubling in the number of Christians over a short time.

Profile Source:   Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General A-Hmao (Ah-Maow)
People Name in Country A-Hmao
Population in China 443,000
World Population 443,000
Countries 1
Progress Scale 3.2
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Big Flowery Miao, Da Hua Miao, Dahua Bei, Diandongbei Miao, Flowery Miao, Great Flowery Miao, Hmong, Northeastern Dian, Hua Miao, Hwa Miao, Miao, Big Flowery, Northeastern Yunnan Miao, Ta Hua Miao, Ta Hwa Miao, Variegated Miao
Affinity Bloc Southeast Asian Peoples
People Cluster Miao / Hmong
People Name General A-Hmao (Ah-Maow)
Ethnic Code MSY47a
People ID 18388
Country China
Region Northeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 29  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country They live in the mountains of northwest Guizhou Province and adjacent areas of northeast Yunnan. A group of A-Hmao live in Wuding and Luquan counties in northern Yunnan Province, having migrated there in the 1830s. A small number also live in the Panzhihua area in southern Sichuan..   Source:  Operation China, 2000
Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Miao, Large Flowery (443,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Miao, Large Flowery 443,000
For Primary Language: Miao, Large Flowery

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1907-2009)
New Testament Yes   (1917-1936)
Complete Bible Yes   (2009)
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible-in-Your-Language Text / Printed Matter
God's Story Video Film / Video
Jesus Film: view in Miao, Large Flowery Film / Video
Magdalena (Jesus Film Project) Film / Video
My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime) Film / Video
Primary Religion: Christianity
Religion Subdivision: Independent

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 75.00 %)
80.00 %
Ethnic Religions
15.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
5.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
100.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: Anonymous  
Map Source: Joshua Project / Global Mapping International  
Profile Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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