Mongour in China

Joshua Project has identified the Mongour only in China

Population

48,600

Christian

0.03%

Evangelical

0.00%

Largest Religion

Main Language

Progress


Profile Source: Copyright © Operation China, Paul Hattaway


Identity

Although the Mongour have been officially included as part of the Tu nationality, they speak a very different language and possess a separate identity from the Tu in other locations. As one researcher explains, "The Tu call themselves Mongol, except those living in Minhe, who form a minority, where the word is pronounced Mongour. This term has mistakenly been used by some Western scholars as the general name for all Tu."


History

When the ancestors of today's Tu and Mongour people first came to Qinghai, the area was occupied by Tibetans, Uygurs, and a group called the Shato. By the late 1300s, the Tu had divided into 16 clans. Eight clans were called Tu (White Mongol), five Shato, one Black Mongol, one Turkish (Uygur), and one Chinese.


Customs

The Mongour have several unique marriage customs. One is called "marriage to the pole" by which a girl stays with her family and takes in lovers. Any children born to her take her family's name. Another is the "marriage to the girdle" where a Mongour girl sleeps with a guest, who upon departure leaves his girdle behind. In case the girl becomes pregnant, she would be "married to the girdle." During child delivery, the mother and baby stay confined to a room for one month. Men are barred from entry; only the closest female relatives are allowed to enter.


Religion

Two types of shamans are active among the Mongour. "White shamans" are used to heal sickness, while "black shamans" bring vengeance on enemies. Another highly regarded religious figure is the kurtain. This is a person who allows himself to be possessed by an evil Daoist spirit.


Christianity

By the 1920s Catholic missionaries were active in the Mongour region, but no church remains today. Most Mongour can read. Missionary Frank Laubach issued a warning to the Church in the 1930s: "Millions in China will soon be reading. Are we going to give them reading matter? Will they be flooded with the message of Christ or with atheism? Will they read love or hate? This is the most stupendous, most arresting, most ominous fact, perhaps on this planet."



Profile Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway Copyrighted ©: Yes Used with permission
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Country China
Continent Asia
Region Northeast Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Location in Country Thirty thousand speakers of the Mongour language were reported in a 1987 study. They primarily inhabit Minhe County in the eastern part of Qinghai Province. Minhe, formerly known as Shangchuankou, lies on the Huang Shui River. Minhe is situated east of the provincial capital Xining, a considerable distance from Huzhu County where the majority of the Tu people live.
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People Name General Mongour
People Name in Country Mongour
ROP3 Code 114229
Joshua Project People ID 18609
Indigenous Yes
Population in China 48,600
Least-Reached Yes
Alternate Names for People Group Minhe Tu, Mongor, Mongou, Monguor, Tu, Tu-jen,
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Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Tu: Minhe 48,606
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Affinity Bloc East Asian Peoples
People Cluster Mongolian
People Name General Mongour
Ethnic Code MSY41y
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Largest Religion Buddhism
Buddhism
70.00%
Christianity
0.03%    ( Evangelical  0.00% )
Ethnic Religions
29.97%
Hinduism
0.00%
Islam
0.00%
Non-Religious
0.00%
Other / Small
0.00%
Unknown
0.00%
Christian Segments
Anglican
0.00%
Independent
10.00%
Protestant
0.00%
Orthodox
0.00%
Other Christian
0.00%
Roman Catholic
90.00%
Photo Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway Copyrighted ©: Yes Used with permission
Map Source: Joshua Project / Global Mapping International
Profile Source:
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more
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