Last Name Hon

2 weekends ago, Jason and his wife Emily came up to Seattle and the general area for residency interviews. It’s been awhile since I’ve seen Jason (probably since high school), so it was cool to get to catch up with him.

Perry was giving them a tour of Seattle on Saturday morning and since I was going to meet up with them in Seattle to watch Quantum of Solace, I decided to join them early. Anyway, while Perry was giving his tour, Jason mentioned that both Emily’s and my last name were the same: Hon. It’s not everyday you meet another Hon, given the fact that most people I know that have similar last names uses the Han variation. I mean even my grandpa uses Han. The reason why Hon is a different variation of the last name is because Hon is the Cantonese pronunciation, while Han uses the traditional Mandarin pinyin system.

Even though both our last name was Hon, there are a few Chinese last names that fit that sound pattern, though 韓 is the most common one of the lot. We discussed this a bit further and it turns out her last name is also the same character as the one in Korea (韓國). I’ve actually never met another Hon that isn’t somehow connected to the family, but I guess there’s always a first.

We discussed a bit more to see which parts of China our respective families were from and didn’t really get much further than that. Her family is currently living in Alabama and I have no recollection of any relatives living there.

According to Wikipedia:

Han (韩) is currently ranked 25th in China in terms of the number of bearers at around 8 million persons

I’m surprised there’s actually that many. Haha…

Apparently my dad’s stories about how we’re descendants of the nobles from the Han Kingdom during the Warring States Period wasn’t too far fetched. However, there are 3 other origins of our last name.

Note: 韓 and 韩 are the same character, but one is traditional and the other is simplified, respectively.

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