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Old October 25th, 2012, 06:49 PM   #31
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Try opening the Wikipedia page on Sino-Roman relations. I believe there's some interesting info on diplomatic relations there.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 07:02 PM   #32

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Originally Posted by Setsunei View Post
Yes, in pronunciation Cantonese is quite different from Mandarin. But in written language it is consistent with Mandarin and all the dialects of Chinese.

Like the dialect in Lombardy is quite different from the dialect in Campania, but they are all Italian.
They're nominally considered to be dialects of standard Italian. But linguistically are different.

''Lombard is considered a [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minority_language"]minority language[/ame], structurally separated from [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_language"]Italian[/ame], by the [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnologue"]Ethnologue[/ame] reference catalogue and by the [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UNESCO"]UNESCO[/ame] Red Book on Endangered Languages. However, the Italian Republic and Swiss Confederation do not recognise Lombard speakers as a linguistic minority. This official line is the same as for most other minority languages in Italy,[5] which are officially considered [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_dialects"]Italian dialects[/ame] in spite of the fact that they belong to different sub-groups of the Romance language family, and in their historical development are in no way derivative of Italian''.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 10:46 PM   #33

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Originally Posted by deke View Post
And some pan turanist jokers claim tocharians are turkic people.
I think they should at least read through wike page on Tocharian.
lol, pan turanism in Xinjiang is terrible problem.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 06:48 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Ashiusx View Post
What is it in Cantonese?
In Cantonese:
China = Zhong Gwok (transcription) = 中國 (traditional Han character)
中(pronounced as Zhong) literally means middle, center, central
國(pronounced as Gwok) means a nation, a country. Some theories state that the character reflects ancient Chinese's believe on what is a nation, which is bound by a borderline, with standing army, with civilian population living on a piece of land.
Althugh the word "Zhong Gwok" appeared very early in Chinese documents its meaning is subjected to debate. Usually people in each Dynasty just equals the name of the dynasty to the name of the country.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 07:18 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Cenarius View Post
The chinese name for Rome is "Da Qin", means "the Great Qin" which does indicate Rome as a great country for both 'Da' and 'Qin'.
Quote from the Book of Later Han(《后汉书西域传》)
'国中灾异及风雨不时,辄废而更立,受放者甘黜不怨.其人民皆长大平正,有类中国,故谓之大秦. '
'If there are disasters, kings would be deposed and changed, the deposed would not be hatred of these decisions. Their people have good and tidy lookings like Chinese, so we call them the Great Qin'.
Quote from History of the Northern Dynasties (《北史卷九十七列传第八十五西域》)
'Their people have good and tidy lookings, their dressings, banners and etiquette are like China, hence foreigners call them the Great Qin'

If you have read through chinese history records, you will know 'Like China' is really the best evaluation for foreign countries.
In fact Chinese maintained certain degree of contact with the West after the fall of Han and Roman Empire. We can continuously find traces of Roman Empire (Da Qin) and Eastern Roman Empire (Fu'lin or Da Qin) in Chinese sources, though the sources are often scattered, few and quite seriously distorted. the most accurate description of Byzantium in Chinese literary sources can be found in the Tang Dynasty.

In 《舊唐書拂菻傳》("Book of Tang", "biography of Fu'lian", a more accurate translation should be "legend of Byzantium") complied in the mid-10th century. It holds a passage which is widely believed to be referring to the Golden Gate in Constantinople.
---Which can be translated as "...Their capital city is made of stones, and (buildings are) made very tall, it has more than a hundred thousand Hukous (households), and faces the sea on its South."
---"...There exists a great gate on the East side of the city, its height is 20+ units (40m), from its top to its bottom, gold is being used as decoration, it is shiny and splendorous, its reflected light can be seen from miles."
---"...From the outer city to its Great Palaces, there are three layers of great gates (it may refer to the Theodosian Walls, Constantinian Walls and the wall of the Great Palace), great treasures, carvings and statues are displayed (on them)"

Really very positive description, especially for a civilization so proud of its own might and has a tradition of considering all foreigners barbarians,

Reference to original Chinese source (in Chinese)
sȬs - yƮw

Last edited by h6wq9rjk; December 7th, 2012 at 07:33 AM.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 01:23 PM   #36
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The Oxford Handbook of Iranian History - Google Books

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Old December 8th, 2012, 02:38 PM   #37

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Regarding antiquity, this is what Zhang Qian had to say on the subject:


Anxi (Partia) is situated several thousand li west of the region of the Great Yuezhi. The people are settled on the land, cultivating the fields and growing rice and wheat. They also make wine out of grapes. They have walled cities like the people of Dayuan, the region containing several hundred cities of various sizes. The kingdom, which borders the Gui River, is very large, measuring several thousand li square. Some of the inhabitants are merchants who travel by carts or boats to neighbouring countries, sometimes journeying several thousand li. The coins of the country are made of silver and bear the face of the king. When the king dies, the currency is immediately changed and new coins issued with the face of his successor. The people keep records by writing horizontally on strips of leather. To the west lies Tiaozhi (Mesopotamia).(...)


Tiaozhi (Babilnia) is situated several thousand li west of Anxi and borders the Western Sea (Persian Gulf). It is hot and damp, and the people live by cultivating the fields and planting rice. In this region live great birds which lay eggs as large as pots. The people are very numerous and are ruled by many petty chiefs. The ruler of Anxi gives orders to these chiefs and regards them as his vassals. The people are very skilful at pertorming tricks that amaze the eye. (...)


Thus the emperor learned of Dayuan, Daxia, Anxi and the others, all great states rich in unusual products whose people cultivated the land and made their living in much the same way as the Chinese. (...) If it were only possible to win over these states by peaceful means, the emperor thought, he could then extend his domain 10,000 li, attract to his court men of strange customs who would come translating and retranslating their languages, and his might would become known to all the lands within the four seas.


When the Han envoys first visited the kingdom of Anxi, the king of Anxi dispatched a party of 20,000 horsemen to meet them on the eastern border of his kingdom. The capital of the kingdom is several thousand li from the eastern border, and as the envoys proceeded there they passed through twenty or thirty cities inhabited by great numbers of people. When the Han envoys set out again to return to China, the king of Anxi dispatched envoys of his own to accompany them, and after the latter had visited China and reported on its great breadth and might, the king sent some of the eggs of the great birds which live in the region, and skilled tricksters of Lixuan, to the Han court as gifts. In addition, the smaller states west of Dayuan, such Huanqian and Dayi, as well as those east of Dayuan, such as Gushi, Yumi, and Suxie, all sent parties to accompany the Han envoys back to China and present gifts at court. The emperor was delighted at this. (...)


Although the states from Dayuan west to Anxi speak rather different languages, their customs are generally similar and their languages mutually intelligible. The men all have deep-set eyes and profuse beards and whiskers. They are skilful at commerce and will haggle over a fraction of a cent. Women are held in great respect, and the men make decisions on the advice of their women. No silk or lacquer is produced anywhere in the region, and the casting of coins and vessels was formerly unknown. Later, however, when some of the Chinese soldiers attached to the Han embassies ran away and surrendered to the people of the area, they taught them how to cast metal and manufacture weapons. Now, whenever the people of the region lay their hands on any Han gold or silver they immediately make it in to vessels and do not use it for currency. (...)
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