Miao-tze, a term applied by the Chinese in a general way to the semi-civilised hill tribes of the south-western provinces. They are numerous, especially in the Nan-Shan uplands about the frontiers of Kwang-si and Kwei-Chew, where they form autonomous communes in territory assigned to them by the Emperor Yung-Ching in 1730. Mention occurs of independent Miao tribes speaking distinct languages (probably Shan dialects), as early as 800 B.C., in which year an expedition was sent to drive them out of the province of Hu-nan. In his expedition of 1861 up the Yang-tze-Kiang Captain Blakiston met some of these Miao - a word in Chinese meaning "aborigines" - whom he describes as of quite a different type from the Chinese, with straight eyes, large nose, dark complexion without the least shade of yellow. But descriptions vary with every group visited by travellers, so that no definite ethnical meaning tan be attached to this term.