My daughter was put up for adoption in China, Guangxi province in 2004. I then adopted her. Her Chinese name is Jin Yan Fa. What does her name mean?

  • Is it written 金燕发? Or was it Jin Yan, Fa (as last name)?
    – Alex
    Commented Mar 26, 2015 at 21:53
  • 4
    Could you paste the Chinese characters of this name here? In Chinese there would be multiple characters sharing the same pronunciation, which have totally different meanings.
    – Han
    Commented Mar 26, 2015 at 21:58

2 Answers 2


Fa as last name in Chinese is super rare. I can only think of one Chinese character 法 (Fa, 法正 was a guy from three kingdoms period, as an example)at the moment. So I really doubt Fa is the last name.

Jin has a common last name character 金, which is super common in China.

Yan as a character in given name, could probably be:

for girls: 妍(nice, classy),艳(beautiful, not popular among educated Chinese people),燕(the bird swallow, and the image of swallow give to Chinese people, kinda different than what american perceive swallow),颜(basically means good face),嫣(the impression of a beautiful girl smiling).

for boys: 研,闫,严,岩,炎,彦.

Fa as a character in given name is usually for boys. And most of them are pretty low class, which can be 发(to be rich),法(law),伐(conquer).

Not trying to stereotype things, but since guangxi is poor province and she was put up for adoption, I would say her Chinese parents are probably not very well educated and her name would probably be 金艳发.

I am sorry if anyone gets offended by my comments.

  • 1
    Comprehensive, logical.
    – Mou某
    Commented Mar 27, 2015 at 13:48

Guangxi province borders Guangdong province where cantonese dialect dominates. Some area of Guangxi speak cantonese. In Disney's movie Mulan, Mulan's family name is Fa which is the cantonese pronunciation of 花 (flower). Is Fa your daugher's last name? This is not a direct answer to your question but we need some more information to help you out.

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