Tibetan Ethnic Group: An old resident in the snowy plateau

The Zang nationality is one of the minority nationalities, and it has over 4,590,000 people. It mainly spreads over Xizang Autonomous Region, Haibei, Huangnai, Hainan, Guoluo, Yushu, Zang Autonomous prefectures and Haixi Moungolian and Zang Autonomous prefecture in Qinghai, Aba and Ganzi Zang Autonomous prefecture and Muli Autonomous County in Sichuan, Diqing Zang Autonomous prefecture in Yunnan, and Gannan Zang Autonomous prefecture and Tianshui Zang Autonomous County in Gansu. That is the so-called “Ridge of World”—the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, which has an average height of over 4000 meters above sea level. 

The Zangs call themselves “Boba”, “Duiba”, “Zangba”, “Weiba”, “Kangba”, or “Anduoba”. There used to be many names called by other nationalities, such as “Tubuo” in Tang and Song Dynasties, “Tubo” or “Xibo” in Yuan Dynasty, and “Xibo”, “Tubote”, “Tanggute”, “Zangbo”, “Zangren” in Ming and Qing Dynasties. 

The Zangs have their own language and character, and Zang language belongs to the Zang language branch of the Tibetan-Burmese language family in the Sino-Tibetan Family, which is divided into three dialects: Weizang, Kang and Anduo. Tibetan character was created consulting Sanskrit, and is alphabetically written from left to right. Zang people used to believe in Bon religion, and now most of them believe in Tibetan Buddhism.

The Tibetan economy focuses on plateau animal husbandry and farming. Sheep, goat and yak are their main domestic animals and highland barley and wheat are their main crops. Zanba (roasted highland barley) and buttered tea are main food for herdsmen. Robe is their main clothes, which is loose, comfortable and wide. Their robe, hat and boots are mostly made of fur or Pulu woven by wool. Herdsmen live in big tent made of canvas or woven by yak hair, and peasants live in flat roof house piled with stones or rammed with earth. Their main festivals are the New Year according to Zang Calendar, Lantern Festival, Xuedun Festival, Wangguo Festival, Linka Festival, etc.

The Zangs have very long history and flourishing culture. They have done great contribution to the construction and development of the border area of the motherland, and to the enrichment of Chinese national culture.