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    China Chronology

    Tonkin and Annam are conquered

    AD 43


    In the first century BC, China conquered several regions of Vietnam. Vietnam is located directly south of China and it borders Laos and the Tonkin Bay. The Tonkin Bay, part of the South China Sea, is located directly off the coast of Vietnam (Duiker; 171). In the time of the Chinese Han Dynasty, around 43 AD, the Chinese defeated and united the central and lower regions of Vietnam with their sprawling empire. Specifically, China conquered the regions of Tonkin and Annam. Annam is located along the central coast of Vietnam from the lower edge of the Red River Delta to the southern boundary of the central highlands in the south (Duiker; 12). Tonkin is located in the Red River Delta.

    Back to Later Han Dynasty Chronology

    Tonkin and Annam are the names the Chinese gave to the southern and central regions of Vietnam. Under Han rule, the Chinese changed the Vietnamese name of Bar-bo to Tonkin, which is the southern region of Vietnam (Duiker; 18). The central region of Vietnam became Annam, originally named Trung-bo. The Chinese name Annam means "Pacified South." However, the extremely patriotic Vietnamese people considered the Chinese names insulting. The Vietnamese people felt so strongly about these names that, in 939, when Vietnam regained its independence, the original names of Bar-bo and Trung-bo were reinstated (Cima; 3).


    Cima, Ronald J., Vietnam a country study, (Washington DC; US Government Printing Office, 1989)

    Duiker, William J., Historical Dictionary of Vietnam, (Metuchen, NJ, Scarecrow Press Inc., 1989)

    Researched by: Christine R. Kuyk
    Written by: Christopher O. Peterson
    Edited by: Steven M. Hoden
    October 15,1997

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