Miao, Mashan Central in China

Joshua Project has identified the Miao, Mashan Central only in China





Largest Religion

Main Language


The Miao

Source:  Asia Harvest      Download

There are four Mashan Miao language groups in Guizhou, designated Northern, Southern, Central, and Western Mashan. All four comprise part of the large Miao nationality - the fourth most populous of China's 55 official minorities. The Central Mashan Miao may call themselves Bu Cao.

The Central Mashan Miao language - which contains an extraordinary 11 tones - is not spoken in any other part of China.


Out of the extensive history of brutality waged by the Chinese against the Miao, what was probably the most vicious war commenced in 1800. A vast Chinese army was mobilized from provinces all over China in a bid to completely exterminate the Miao. Critics describing the war at the time stated that "elephant guns were used to hunt rabbits." An estimated 500,000 Miao in Guizhou were butchered in the carnage, forcing the survivors to flee to more remote and mountainous regions. This and many similar historical influences have scattered the Miao, which resulted in them speaking such a wide variety of languages today.


According to legend, at one time there were two Miao sisters who were unhappy because they could not find suitable husbands. A special social gathering was arranged with a neighboring village, enabling them to meet two handsome young men, whom they married. To this day the Central Mashan Miao - and most other Miao groups - prefer to marry outside of their village. Marriage outside of their tribe or clan is extremely rare, however, and is discouraged by community leaders.


The Central Mashan Miao believe that all sickness is caused by evil spirits. A farmer with a headache is often thought to have met the "Shrinking Head Spirit" on a mountain slope. The victim is required to throw a bowl of rice and water outside the village gate to appease the spirit.


Only a tiny fraction of the Central Mashan Miao profess to be Christians. A small number of them have believed the gospel, but they currently do not have the resources or initiative to spread the gospel throughout the remainder of their people, most of whom have yet to hear the gospel. There is a massive church among the A-Hmao and Gha-Mu about 200 kilometers (124 mi.) to the northwest. If the believers from these two "Miao" groups came to the Central Mashan Miao they would need to learn a new language and new customs, and they might not be socially accepted.

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

Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2011-07-17
People Name General Miao, Mashan Central (Meow, Ma-shahn)
People Name in Country Miao, Mashan Central
Population in China 119,000
World Population 119,000
Countries 1
Progress Scale 1.2
Least-Reached Yes
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Central Mashan Miao, Hmong, Central Mashan
Affinity Bloc Southeast Asian Peoples
People Cluster Miao / Hmong
People Name General Miao, Mashan Central (Meow, Ma-shahn)
Ethnic Code MSY47a
People ID 18589
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 The 1995 Miaoyu Jianzhi lists a 1990 population of 70,000 Central Mashan speakers out of a total population of 92,000 for all four Mashan vernaculars. The Central Mashan Miao are found in the Zongdi District of Ziyun County, in the Dayi District of Wangmo County, and in the Banyuan District of Luodian County. The locals have a saying that the Chinese live at the base of the hills, the Bouyei halfway up, and the Miao at the very top..   Source:  Operation China, 2000
Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Miao, Central Mashan (119,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Miao, Central Mashan 119,000
For Primary Language: Miao, Central Mashan

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions No
New Testament No
Complete Bible No
Resource Format
Bible-in-Your-Language Text / Printed Matter
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.25 %)
1.00 %
Ethnic Religions
94.50 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
4.50 %
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: Operation China, Paul Hattaway   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Map Source: Bethany World Prayer Center  
Video Source: Asia Harvest
Profile Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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