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Romans China

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August 24, 2000 | HENRY CHU, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Song Guorong's genealogy gets hazy just a few generations before his own. But follow it back further--by 2,000 years--and he'll tell you exactly who lies at the root of his family tree. "I know my ancestors were Romans," the lanky 39-year-old says in a matter-of-fact voice as he navigates the rutted lanes of this dusty hamlet deep in China's interior. It's a remarkable claim to make, in a place as far east of Rome as New York is west.
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NEWS
August 24, 2000 | HENRY CHU, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Song Guorong's genealogy gets hazy just a few generations before his own. But follow it back further--by 2,000 years--and he'll tell you exactly who lies at the root of his family tree. "I know my ancestors were Romans," the lanky 39-year-old says in a matter-of-fact voice as he navigates the rutted lanes of this dusty hamlet deep in China's interior. It's a remarkable claim to make, in a place as far east of Rome as New York is west.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 29, 2000
Re "Digging for Romans in China," Aug. 24: There is a better explanation for the curly hair and light eyes of the residents of Zhelaizhai in northwest China. Sometime in the middle of the second century BC, the Hong (or Khong) clan in northwest China was defeated by the ancestors of Attila the Hun, resulting in an exodus of the Hong people to an area outside of China proper, in today's Uzbekistan. Ancient Chinese maps show a Hong (Khong) kingdom or territory in that region. The Hongs eventually moved back to China as traders, healers and musicians during the Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907)
OPINION
May 1, 1988 | Gore Vidal, Novelist Gore Vidal divides his time between Los Angeles and Ravello
On April 11, Bernardo Bertolucci and his Italian associates won nine Academy Awards for the film "The Last Emperor." The press made much of the fact that Italy had, at last, made a successful, international, "epic" film. Bertolucci did his best to reassure us: The picture really wasn't all that Italian. He had got financing from everywhere, even from far Cathay. But he was too tactful.
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