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The 100 Most Common and Popular Chinese Surnames in China

According to a conversation estimate by experts, there are approximately 20,000 surnames that have been or are currently in use in China.

According to the latest report of the Seventh National Population Census of the People’s Republic of China, published in 2021, the hundred most common Chinese surnames are as follows:

The following list is sorted based on the population of each surname:

1
2wáng
3zhāng
4liú
5chén
6yáng
7huáng
8zhào
9zhōu
10
11
12sūn
13zhū
14
15
16guō
17lín
18
19gāo
20liáng
21zhèng
22luó
23sòng
24xiè
25táng
26hán
27cáo
28
29dèng
30xiāo
31féng
32zēng
33chéng
34cài
35péng
36pān
37yuán
38
39dǒng
40
41
42
43
44wèi
45jiǎng
46tián
47
48dīng
49shěn
50jiāng
51fàn
52jiāng
53
54zhōng
55
56wāng
57dài
58cuī
59rén
60
61liào
62yáo
63fāng
64jīn
65qiū
66xià
67tán
68wéi
69jiǎ
70zōu
71shí
72xióng
73mèng
74qín
75yán
76xuē
77hóu
78léi
79bái
80lóng
81duàn
82hǎo
83kǒng
84shào
85shǐ
86máo
87cháng
88wàn
89
90lài
91
92kāng
93
94yán
95yǐn
96qián
97shī
98niú
99hóng
100gōng

Based on the data, we can see that the most common last name is 李 (lǐ), which represents 7.94% of the population of the Han ethnic group (汉族 Hàn zú). The Han ethnic group is the largest ethnic group in China, covering 91.51% of the country’s total population.

The second most common surname is 王 (wáng), which accounts for 7.65% of the Han population. Many of the Wangs live in Shanxi, Hebei, and Henan provinces.

Then we have 张 (zhāng), another popular Chinese surname as it accounts for 7.07% of the Han ethnic population.

Last but not least, we have 刘 (liú) accounting for 5.38% of the Han population and 陈 (chén) at 4.53%.

Picking a Chinese Name

If you want a Chinese name that is authentic and not just a direct translation of your English name, then your first step is to pick a Chinese surname. Chinese surnames do not carry a specific meaning on their own. They are derived from ancient family clans, geographical locations, or, in some cases, honorific titles. Therefore, you can choose a surname that sounds nice to you or is easy for you to pronounce and write.

To help you choose a Chinese surname as easily as possible, we have compiled a list of Chinese surnames with the least number of strokes.

Chinese Surnames with the Least Number of Strokes

The Most 100 Common & Popular Chinese Surnames Notebook

Additionally, if you are taking learning Chinese seriously, the following notebook with a cover design based on the 100 most common Chinese surnames design would be a great starting point 😁

Click here to get your copy.

Want to practice basic Chinese characters systematically and more effectively? Don’t miss out on the Chinese Characters for Beginners workbook series. After completing the series, you will have learned 300 characters from the NEW HSK 1 (beginner level), practiced 480 words, and mastered over 300 phrases.