On Yàluòshān < rwxšn

History never ceases to make me marvel. It is only recently that I understood that Ān Lùshān 安祿山 was from Northeast, not Northwest China. According to Chinese books of history, his family name was originally Kāng 康, Samarkand, so his patrilinear ancestors travelled 4,444 km to Yíngzhōu 營州 in modern-day Liáoníng province, where he was born. (A way to visualize this: the same distance will take you from Samarkand to Venice.) In fact, as I later discovered, Táng-era Héběi hosted a large multiethnic population, mostly of Turkic and Sogdian origin…
安禄山本姓康,名轧荦山或阿荦山,系译自粟特语rwxšn “光明”。这里的荦字非常古怪,因为一方面它是一个罕用字,主要出现在“卓荦”一个联绵字中,另一方面又是不应当存在的来母二等字…