Northern vs. Southern China

The major DNA divide within China is along a North-South divide.

Northern China

  • Mix of Han people from the Yellow River with a lot of Northern pastoral tribes
  • Speaks Mandarin, which has heavy influences from Northern pastoral tribal languages
  • eats noodles
  • mostly atheist

Southern China

  • Closer to purely Han people from Yellow River
  • Speaks Cantonese, Hokkien, and other languages that Tang dynasty poems rhyme in
  • eats rice
  • nominally Buddhist

Northern Chinese are also taller, although this isn’t dichotomous–height is a continuous increase as you move from the southernmost to the northernmost. (True anywhere in the world as the temperature gets colder)

Who’d have thunk it?


Makes sense due to waves of Han migration over time. But a lot of Austroasiatic, Austronesian, and other mixing I guess.


They are trying as hard as they can. give them time, the Borg weren’t built in a day :innocent:

to do what?

Historically, Northern Han are supporters of Manchu-dominated, multi-ethnic Qing Empire.

While, Southern Han are the revolutionaries that toppled the empire.

Or we go back on Three Kingdom era, Northern Han were Wei’s peasant army, while Southern Han were Wu’s fishermen naval infantries.

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That is a pretty incorrect description of the DNA make up of Southern China.

In almost all regions, the maternal mitochondrial DNA mostly stayed the same, meaning it did not get replaced, however, the paternal Y chromosome is largely displaced. It means that when migration/invasion happened, the native male population got a gender specific genocide. So paternal lineage that would have been local to Northern China is now dominant in Southern China, and paternal lineage that would have been local to Southern China, is now more numerous in South East Asia.

That is pretty true in Taiwan as well.


I heard that only southern chinese people will eat stuff like cats, dogs, bats, etc. and northern chinese do not eat any of those exotic stuff…

Send in their people to slowly over run the locals. A common CCP strategy. They do it everywhere, even here. But see tibet for a more evolved success story.

That is like every country plan whatsoever.
Americans do that to marginalize the Native Americans in early days.
Australian do that to marginalize the Aborigines until few decades ago.
All Central/South American countries do that to marginalize the natives.
Nazi Germany do that in Europe.
Liberia do that by spreading out the liberated African American to marginalized local African natives.
Soviet government sent Russian majority to marginalize various ethnic minority republics.
Chinese government sent Han majority to marginalize various ethnic minority.
It is never a CCP specific strategy. People of all colors have done that all the time.

The ones that keep it to themselves….
Apartheid South Africa.

Yes. no one is saying humans are good and ethical. But this thread is about china, so china gets called out.

It is disgraceful. Our species should be ashamed.

Look at this topographical map and you’ll see why Southern China speaks tons of languages and Northern China just speaks Mandarin.

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Why hasn’t the language changed much?

Could you draw a red line as to where you are roughly defining northern and southern china? Just to clarify.

I heard historically only global-spread viruses come from south China

Northern China is better. China’s greatest cities (Shenyang, Harbin) are located in the North.

It has. South of the Yangtze was dominated by Kra-Dai, Hmong–Mien and Austroasiatic speakers. Now, if they still remained in the region, they are extreme minorities compare to speakers of the Sinitic languages. Even early Sinitic migrants were later forced to change their language by waves of later migrants from the North. Just look at Taigi, with Middle Chinese imposed above the Old Chinese substrate, and now nearly completely killed off by Mandarin.

Since the Sinitic language family is a sub-branch of the Trans-Himalayan langauge family, the original Sinitic speakers were based in Sichuan, before moving into the Central Planes. In the North, they were constantly challenged by people moving East from the Asian Steppes, and original Dongyi inhabitants living along the coast. As for which route they took to get to Sichuan is up for debate, although I think it’s more likely that they migrated across the Himalayas into Tibet before getting to Sichuan.

The theory pushed by China is that Trans-Himalayan languages moved from Northern China towards India, however, intra-family diversity is clearly much higher away from Northern China.

I think it’s pretty clear where the Trans-Himalayan homeland actually is.

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Tell us more :grinning:

The more worrying aspect are perhaps the intentions and actions taken rather than the end result, or current cross section, of any given spot at this moment of inquiry.

Did you just say Shenyang is one of China’s greatest cities? :thinking: I’ve been there once, 20 years ago. There was nothing “great” about it, and I doubt it has changed any more than any other Chinese city.

I did. In fact, I believe that it is by far China’s greatest city. I’ve been to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Hong Kong, but none of those cities compare. Even Harbin is a very distant second.

I lived there for three years, until I left China in 2021. I love it for the people, the food, and the weather. Dongbei in general is great, but Shenyang is the best dongbei has to offer.