The Hui nationality 回族 – 56 Nationalities in China


Chinese Name: 回族

English Name: The Hui nationality,

Languages: Hui language 回语

Total population: 1.05*107 (China mainland 2022)

Distribution: Mainly distributed in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region

The Hui nationality 回族
The Hui nationality 回族

Brief introduction

The Hui nationality 回族 is one of the most populous ethnic minorities in China, and the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region 宁夏回族自治区 is its main settlement area. The origin of the Hui ethnic group can be traced back to the Tang Dynasty 唐朝. Academic circles generally believe that the Hui ethnic group was roughly formed in the Ming Dynasty 明朝, while the Yuan Dynasty 元朝 was the preparatory period for the formation of the Hui ethnic group, and the Ming Dynasty was the period when the Hui ethnic group finally formed.

The history of the Hui nationality

The origin of the Hui people can be traced back to the Tang Dynasty 唐朝. According to the existing historical data, Muslim merchants from the Arab world 阿拉伯世界 and Iran 伊朗 came to China to settle in China one after another by sea. They are regarded as the ancestors of the Hui nationality. Academia generally believes that the Hui nationality was roughly formed in the Ming Dynasty, and the Yuan Dynasty was the preparation period for the formation of the Hui nationality.

The academic community generally believes that the Hui nationality was roughly formed in the Ming Dynasty, but the Yuan Dynasty was the preparation period for the formation of the Hui nationality because their army invaded westward and moved the people of all ethnic groups in Central Asia and West Asia to China.

The religion of the Hui nationality

Islam has always played an important role in the formation and development of the Hui nationality. Since the formation of the Hui nationality, the Hui nationality in various places has continued this belief. The Hui people have strong Islamic colours in their eating habits, clothing decoration, birth naming, coming-of-age ceremonies, marriage and funerals, festivals and other customs.

Islam 伊斯兰教
Islam 伊斯兰教

The Cultures of the Hui nationality

Hui diets 回族饮食

According to Islamic regulations, the Hui people abstain from eating pigs, horses, donkeys, mules, dogs and all animals that die by themselves. Regardless of cattle, sheep, camels and chickens, they all need to go through an essential prayer ceremony before being slaughtered, otherwise, they cannot be eaten.

In daily life, the Hui people do not smoke or drink alcohol, but they especially like to drink tea and treat guests with tea. The most representative is “Eight Treasures Herbal Tea”, that is, tea leaves, rock sugar, wolfberry, walnut kernels, sesame seeds, red dates, longan, raisins, etc. brewed in the cup.

Eight Treasures Herbal Tea 八宝盖碗茶
Eight Treasures Herbal Tea 八宝盖碗茶

Hui costumes 回族服饰

The headgear is the most typical and characteristic clothing of the Hui people. They regard white as the cleanest and most joyful colour because Islam is still white. This is also why white is an indispensable colour in the clothing of the Hui people.

Hui costumes 回族服饰
Hui costumes 回族服饰

Hui women generally wear white round caps and hijabs. The colours are generally green, blue and white. Different age groups prefer different colours. For example, young girls wear green, married women wear black, and women with grandchildren or elderly women wear white. Most caps and hijabs are made of high-grade fine materials such as silk, silk, and georgette, and really good. The hijab for the elderly is longer and should be worn over the vest. However, the hijab for girls and daughters-in-law is relatively short, and it is sufficient to cover the front neck in front.

Hui national festival 回族民族节日

Because of their belief in Islam, the Hui nationality celebrates three major festivals every year, namely Eid al-Fitr 开斋节Eid al-Adha 古尔邦节 and Ramadan 斋戒月. The festivals are calculated according to the Islamic calendar.

The ninth month of the religious calendar is the month of Ramadan every year, and Muslims who have reached the age of twelve for men and nine years of age for women must fast. When the fasting period is over, it is Eid al-Fitr. This day starts at dawn, bathes and cleanses, puts on new clothes, and goes to the mosque for a ceremony.

Eid al-Adha is generally held 70 days after Eid al-Fitr. Before the holiday, every house is cleaned, fried incense, naan, flowers and so on. At dawn on the day of the festival, take a bath, burn incense, put on neat clothes and go to the mosque to attend the ceremony. After the end, a grand slaughtering ceremony will be held. One of the slaughtered meat will be eaten by oneself, one will be given to relatives, friends and neighbours, and one will be given to the poor.

Hui harmonica 回族的口弦

The harmonica of the Hui people is made of sheet metal, shaped like pliers, with reeds attached to the circle. When playing, place the mouth string between the lips with the left hand, pluck the reed with the right hand, and oscillate the sound by air. The vocal range sounds narrow, beautiful and elegant. It is mostly used in the love lives of young men and women, especially Hui women and children.

Hui harmonica 回族的口弦
Hui harmonica 回族的口弦

The Hui nationality (回族)

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