Huangdi – the Yellow Overlord

Huangdi’s line appears to be still a branch of the Sino-Tibetan group.  However, he was implied to be the father of ‘Bei-di’ (北狄) or the ‘barbarian’ from the north in ‘The Legends of Mountains and Seas’, which was said to be a book written after Lord Yu sent expeditions to the four corners of the world to survey the earth, but was more likely a book written in the 4th century B.C.E. around, with Shi-zi, i.e., teacher of Qin reformer Shang Yang, making extensive comments therein. (In the spirits of restoring the lost Chinese classics that were destroyed by Qin Emperor Shihuangdi’s book-burning and Confucian-burying campaign, Han Dynasty scholars had done extensive work recompiling lost books. Historian Liu Xiang and Lin Xin were responsible for assembling the book Wu [five] Zang [viscera of mother Earth] Shan [mountain] Jing [records], i.e., historical writings on the mountains and seas of China, and related books on the seas, into the book Shan Hai Jing.)

《山海經》:“黃帝之孫日始均,始均生北狄”。“黃帝生苗龍,苗龍生融吾,融吾生弄明,弄明生白犬……是為犬戎”。 “顓頊生驩頭,驩頭生苗民”。“季禺之國,顓頊之子”。“有國,名曰叔士,顓頊之子”。“有國曰中輪,顓頊之子”。

Here, ‘Bei-di’ (北狄) could be some mixed O3/N barbarians who were relatively cooked versus the uncooked C-haplogroup barbarians in the Amur River area to the north. This webmaster’s point was that the early Huns were most likely Qiangic proto-Tibetans or a possible separate Yun-surnamed Xianyun group which was exiled to Northwest China together with the San-miao people in the late 3rd millennium B.C.E.; the later Xianbei, Khitan, Jurchen, Mongol and Manchu people, who were proto-Manchurian or proto-Altaic, were the C haplogroup; and the “cooked” barbarians, i.e., those dwelling between the Sinitic Chinese and the “raw” barbarians, were the mixed O/C/N-haplogroup people.)

Separately, Sima Qian, whose writing represented the orthodoxy Huangdi line, inadvertently stated that Huangdi moved across the nation without a fixed dwelling place (or palace). (See 《史记·五帝本纪》“披山通道,未尝宁居。东至于海,登丸山,及岱宗。西至于空桐,登鸡头。南至于江,登熊、湘。北逐荤粥,合符釜山,而以于涿鹿之阿。迁徙往来无常处,以师兵为营卫。”)

This webmaster, after reflecting on the DNA findings, would tend to think that the O1, O2 and O3 haplogroups might have not geographically split from each other at the time of Yandi [Chiyou] and Huangdi or might have just geographically split from each other by that time. The confusion related to the ancient overlords could be a result of erroneous interpretation by later scholars. Example: Huangdi the Yellow Lord was said to be born in Shouqiu of today’s Shandong Province. Here, scholars validated that it was Kong An’guo, a Confucius descendant, who made the remark that Huangdi was born in Shouqiu. The word “Shouqiu”, however, appeared in the context of Sima Qian’s writings on Lord Shun, with a claim that Lord Shun, who was born near Lishan or today’s southern Shanxi, had made potteries by the river [which was taken to be possibly the Fen-he River] and continued to manufacture utensils at Shouqiu, a place that had to be somewhere in southern Shanxi, not Shandong.

《索隐》citing 皇甫谧:“黄帝生于寿丘,长于姬水,因以为姓。居轩辕之丘,因以为名,又以为号。”


Difference and similarity in regards to the birth of Yandi and Huangdi

The ancient historians tried to reconcile the records, and hence pointed out that Huangdi’s mother, Fubao ( 附宝), came from a tribe whose ancestors belonged to the same Youqiao-shi (有蟜氏) tribe as Yandi’s mother. As to Yandi, the claim was that his mother came from the Youqiao-shi (有蟜氏) tribe, carrying the name of Andeng (安登). Fubao or Andeng could not be the same woman even though the tribe could be traced to the same one, Youqiao-shi (有蟜氏).












《春秋纬·元命苞》:“少典妃安登游于华阳,有神龙首,感之于常羊,生神农。人面龙颜,好耕,是谓神农,始为天子。” (The wei [纬] series were mostly forgeries by scholars from the late Western Han Dynasty.)

What “Guo-yu” stated was an earlier version at the time of Zuo Qiuming, stating that Yandi and Huangdi were brothers, the conflict of which was not reconciled. What Huangfu Mi of Western Jinn Dynasty did was to give details as well as explanations, stating that Yandi’s original birthplace was at “Changyangshan” Mountain, near the Yi-shui and Luo-shui Rivers and Huashan Mountain. According to Zhou Dynasty’s bronze inscription, this place was the original place for the “middle land (kingdom)”.

Huangdi, per Jinn Yu of Guo Yu, was born and grew up along the Ji-shui River, a river that was never properly pinpointed. (Liu Jiujie, a Henan Province native, stated that the Juci-he River at the foot of Mt. Jucishan was known as Qingyih-he or Yih-shui River which wasthe original Ji-shui River.) As Jinn Yu of Guo Yu was more authoritative, we could give this thought the credit, and hence agree with the ancient saints that Huangdi, or the Yellow Overlord, was indeed a brotherly tribe of Yandi and had the same origin from the Shaodian tribe on the paternal side and the Youqiao-shi tribe on the maternal side, while the Youqiao-shi tribe, i.e., a honey bees or silkworm tribe, was validated to be located in today’s central plains. (Liu Jiujie, a Henan Province native, stated that the Juci-he River at the foot of Mt. Jucishan was known as Qingyih-he or Yih-shui River which wasthe original Ji-shui River.)

Huangdi’s Birthplace and Burial Place

Huangdi’s birthplace was historically pinned to be at the Youxiong-shi land, namely, today’s Xinzheng of Henan Province. However, the conflict I am seeing here is that Huangdi had in fact set his domain (capital) of ruling at Youxiong, not his birthplace. The time Huangdi had set its capital at Youxiong would have to be after his defeating Chi-you (or Yandi) at Zhuolu or Banquan, which was beyond the Yellow River and at the border with the Inner Mongolian steppe. (The important thing to note is that the Battle of Zhuolu could be fought in the heartland of China or Mt. Jucishan, with the name Zhuolu appropriated to the Hebei-Kalgan border area later.)



《 帝王世纪》:“黄帝有熊氏,少典之子,姬姓也。母曰附宝,其先即炎帝。母家有娇氏之女,也与少 典氏婚,故《国语》兼称焉。得神农氏之末,少典氏又娶附宝”,…“生黄帝于寿丘,长于姬水,因以为姓 。以土承火,位在中央,故曰黄帝。有圣德,受国于有熊,居轩辕之丘,故因以为名,又以为号。”…“在 位百年而崩,年一百一十岁……,葬于上郡阳周之桥山”。(Huangfu Mi  already mixed up the Arch Mountain in Shangjun [上郡] as the real Arch mountain in northern Hebei)

《史记 李斯列传》: “使者即以属吏,系于阳周。” 《蒙恬列 传》: “又遣使者之 阳周”,… 《项羽本纪》:“蒙恬竟斩阳周”。

Eastern Han Dynasty also mistook the Arch Mountain in today’s Shenxi as the real one.

《括地志》:” 黄帝陵 在 寧州 罗川县 东八十里 子午山 。” 《汉书·地理志》:“阳周,桥山在南,有黄帝 家,莽曰上陵?。” 《尔雅》山鋭而高曰桥也。”

The Arch Mountain in Shenxi is today known as Ziwuling[ 子午岭 ], the place Liu Zhidan’s Red Amy banditry took as the safe haven.

Jinn Dynasty historian Huangfu Mi expanded on Sima Qian’s book in stating that Huangdi was born near the end of the Yandi Dynasty at a place called Shouqiu, which is to the east of today’s Qufu, Shandong Province. Huangfu Mi continued to state that Huangdi established his rule by setting his capital at the Youxiong-shi land (i.e., today’s Xinzheng of Henan Province). [There was a same name pottery site in today's Shanxi Province. See 《史记“陶河滨,作什器于寿丘,就时于负夏”)] However, Huangfu Mi could be misled by the forgeries written prior to Jinn Dynasty. The forgery started with Kong Anguo’s editing and comments, which the later scholars claimed to be written by Kong Anguo, termed  《古文尚书》and 尚书传》, alternatively named 《伪古文尚书》and《尚书伪孔传》.

The Youxiong-shi land

Should we examine Sima Qian’s Shi Ji line by line, we could find major conflicts whenever Huangdi’s origin was concerned. Sima Qian claimed that Huangdi and Yandi were brothers, albeit stating in a different section to point out that Yandi was one of the last overlords of the Shennong-shi reign. The Yandi Dynasty had apparently continued for a long history, not to mention the preceding overlords between the first overlord Fuxi-shi and the last royal house of Shenong-shi from which the Yandi Dynasty originated.

The conflict lied in the claim that Huangdi was a brother of Yandi and was a son of the Shaodian tribe.   The rest was fine, such as Huangdi being given the ‘Ji’ surname, having the conferral of  [? or setting the capital at (per Huangfu Mi and later scholars)]  the land of ‘xiong’ (i.e., bear),  came to be called by the Youxiong-shi, dwelled near a hill which came to be known as the Xuanyuan-qiu Hill, and married with a woman from Xiling. The locality was historically pinned to be today’s Xinzheng of Henan Province.


(晋)王嘉《拾遗记》: 轩辕出自有熊之国。母曰昊枢,以戊己之日生,故以土德称王也。









Where is the locality of the Youqiao-shi tribe?

The Youqiao-shi tribe, meaning the bee or honey collection tribe [or the silkworm tribe??],  appeared to be located near the Yi-shui and Luo-shui River areas, the same area as Yandi’s tribe.

国语, 晋语》载:“昔少典氏娶于有蟜氏,生黄帝、炎帝。”





《逸周书·作雒解》:周公“作大邑成周于土中,城方千七百二十丈……南系于洛水,北因于郏山”。(《逸周书》was a forgery, just like parts of Guan-zi.)




庄周《黄帝将见大隗》: “黄帝将见大隗乎具茨之山,方明为御,昌寓骖乘,张若、謵朋前马,昆阍、滑稽后车。至于襄城之野”







Locality of Huangdi’s wife was said to be Xiling, while Xiling was historically extrapolated to be in today’s Sichuan Province, and hence the continuity of the legend about Lord Yu’s birthplace in western China and known as Rong-yu (I.e., Yu who was born in the western Rong land). Xiling, per Wei Si at would be in today’s Xiping at the Sichuan-Hubei border.



《隋书•礼仪志》〈 路史》:”伏羲化蚕。西陵氏始养蚕。故《淮南蚕经》云‘西陵氏劝蚕稼,亲蚕始此’。”





杨守敬《水经注图.潕水篇》: “吕墟,即西陵亭”


Huangdi’s Link to Zhuolu -the Hongshan Culture in the Hebei-Shanxi-Chahar (Kalgan) area

Huangdi was said to have defeated Chiyou at the Battle of Zhuolu and defeated Yandi at the Battle of Banquan. The two places were today known to be near Kalgan. . Complicating the situation would be some reasonable analysis stating that the ancient locality for Zhuolu [chasing deers] could in fact be right in the heartland of the central plains, namely, not far away from the two banks of the Yellow River, or the Yi-shui/Luo-shui Rivers on the south bank and the Mt. Zhongtiaoshan on the north bank. The point was that Zhuolu was later appropriated to today’s northern Hebei. The important thing to note is that the Battle of Zhuolu could be fought in the heartland of China or Mt. Jucishan, with the name Zhuolu appropriated to the Hebei-Kalgan border area later. Huangdi was linked to the Qiao-shan or the Arch Mountain since prehistory. It was during the Five Dynasty time period that Huangdi’s prilgrimage was rebuilt in Shenxi after the Khitans took over today’s northern Hebei. Tuoba Wei Dynasty, which claimed a direct descent from Huangdi, apparently paid more respect to Huangdi than any other ruler in history.
《史记·五帝本纪》:東至于海,登丸山,及岱宗。西至于空桐,登雞頭。南至于江,登熊、湘。北逐葷粥,合符釜山,而邑于涿鹿之阿。遷徙往來無常處,以師兵為營衛。(釜山-今河北怀来《水经注》引《魏土地记》:“潘城西北三里有历山” ;《括地志》:“釜山在妫州怀戎县北三里”;《后魏舆地图风土记》:“潘城西北三里有历山,形似覆釜,故以名之,其下有舜庙,瞽叟祠存焉”。旧唐书·地理志》妫州怀戎:“后汉潘县、属上谷郡,……妫水经其中,妫州所治也”。)
《水经注》: “温泉水注之,水上承温泉于桥山下”。
《魏书》卷二、《北史》卷一  拓跋嗣“幸涿鹿,登桥山,观温泉,使使者以太牢祠黄帝庙”。
《魏书》卷三拓跋嗣 “遣使者祠黄帝、唐尧庙”。
Huangdi’s Domain
《史记·五帝本纪》:“(黄帝)东至于海,登丸山,及岱宗。” “黄帝之地,北至于幽陵,南至于交阯。” (《小戴礼·王制》:南方曰蛮,雕题、交趾。《礼记.王制》:”南方曰蛮,雕题交趾,有不火食者矣。” 郑注:”交趾,足相乡,浴则同川,卧则僢。” 正义:”蛮卧时头在外,足在内而相交,故曰交趾。”)(《史记正义》(唐张守节:丸音桓。括地志:“丸山即丹山,在青州临朐县界朱虚故县西北二十里,丹水出焉。”) (《史记集解》[南朝宋裴骃]:徐广曰:“丸,一作‘凡’。”骃案:地理志曰丸山在郎邪朱虚县。)
《淮南子》: “黄帝治天下,……诸北、儋耳之国,莫不献其贡职。”



Huangdi was alternatively recorded to have killed both Chi-you (who was alternatively postulated to be the same as Yandi the Fiery Overlord) and the two Hao-suffixed Dong-yi tribal leaders (i.e., the original Chinese dwelling in the central China and coastal China). [Liu Junnan (刘俊男), in his article on "tracing the origin of five ancient 'Di' overlords", pointed out that “两昊” = “魉昊”, which was tenuous even though he could be right about the distinction between the 'heavenly' god for 太昊 and the 'dynastic' overlord 太昊 .]







In the Japanese section, this webmaster postulated that that the original Nine Yi people, being not homogeneous, could have lived in the interface ground among the three main Mongoloid groups of O1-, O2- and O3-haplogroup people [plus possibly the C-haplogroup Tungunsic people] whom we could linguistically identify as the Sino-Tibetan, the Hmong-Mien and the Yi-Yue people. We could further deduce that as a result of the mixing-up of the Hmong-Mien people and the Yi people in today’s Hebei Province and on the Shandong Peninsula, we then have the phenomenon of the later people in Manchuria, Korea and Japan sharing the same archaic traditions as recorded among the ancient Nine Yi people of the 3rd millennium B.C.E., but lacking the hallmark  ”phoenix” adoration as still exists among today’s minority people in Southwestern China –the true descendants of the Hmong-Mien people. (The archaic traditions would include the historical practice of “dun ju” [squatting, which mutated into the Manchu practice of one leg kneeling on the ground while another leg bending at the knee,, which the Manchus used as the protocol for seeing the superiors; or spreading the feet if we use an alternative definition in Chinese classics], slate coffins, and bearing down the newborn’s head with stone.)

Huangdi reaching the Han-shui River and the Yangtze River

Drawing the two parallels, we could also say that both Huangdi and Tuoba had extended their rule to the area no further than the Han-shui River and the Yangtze River.  In another word, there was no implication of an alien conquest of the whole China as the Mongols and the Manchus succeeded in China’s history. The southern excursion by Huangdi could be a continuity of the conquest ensuing from defeating Yandi/Chi-you.

《史记·五帝本纪》: “披山通道,未尝宁居。东至于海,登丸山,及岱宗。西至于空桐,登鸡头。南至于江,登熊、湘。北逐荤粥,合符釜山,而以于涿鹿之阿。迁徙往来无常处,以师兵为营卫。”

南宋祝穆 《方舆胜揽》:”山川熊山,己昔黄帝登熊山,意其此也”。


《水经注·湘水》: “是山,湘君之所游处。故曰君山矣”。

Yandi and Huangdi had separate descendants living in the barbarian lands




《山海經》:“黃帝之孫日始均,始均生北狄”。“黃帝生苗龍,苗龍生融吾,融吾生弄明,弄明生白犬……是為犬戎”。 “顓頊生驩頭,驩頭生苗民”。“季禺之國,顓頊之子”。“有國,名曰叔士,顓頊之子”。“有國曰中輪,顓頊之子”。




王嘉《拾遗记》:高辛 “帝喾之妃,邹屠氏之女也。轩辕去蚩尤之凶,迁其民善者于邹屠之地,迁恶者于有北之乡。其先以地命族,后分为邹氏、屠氏。女行不践地,常履风云,游于伊、洛。帝乃期焉,纳以为妃。




明 杨慎《升庵诗话·紫濛》: “慕容氏自云轩辕之后,从于紫蒙之野。”

(To help understand this new perspective, you may want to check into recent archaeological discoveries in the Kalgan area, as shown in two videos below: series 4 series 5
A caveat here: you may want to discard the claims of the so-called Chiyou tombstone, as shown in the video “Discovering the First City in Chinese History: Huangdi City – Zhuolu”, which appears to me to be some kind of make-up of the 20th century China to make some quick bucks.)

In the section on Yandi (i.e., the Fiery Lord), we would present evidence that the original people who created the Sinitic civilization were in fact the O3-haplogroup Hmong-mien people while the O3-haplogroup Sino-Tibetans might have hijacked the reign after defeating Chi-you and Yandi in the epic battles of Zhoulu and Banquan.

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