The Origins of Wing Chun's Branches
Leung Jan (梁贊) is as far back as the lineages that descend from him—Yip Man, Yiu Kai, Pan Nam, Tam Yeung, Fung Sing—can reliably verify their genealogy. He was a practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine in the city of Foshan in the 19th century. Leung Jan is said to have learned from Wong Wah-Bo (黃華寶) and Leung Yee-Tai (梁二娣), respectively the male and "female" martial leads of the Red Boat Opera Company, each of whom is said to have been an expert on different aspects of Wing Chun. According to legends from the Yip Man lineage, Leung Yee-Tai was a poler, that is, he used a pole to steer the Red Boat away from rocks and shoals, and was therefore chosen by the legendary Shaolin master Jee Shim himself to learn the six-and-a-half point pole. Leung Jan's students included his sons Leung Chun (梁春) and Leung Bik (梁壁) as well as "Wooden Man" Wah (木人華) and Chan Wah-Shun (陳華順) nicknamed "Moneychanger Wah" (找錢華), from whom the Yip Man, Yiu Kai, and Pan Nam lineages descend.
However, the Leung Jan lineage is not the only branch of the art. According to the traditions of the Cho family, Wong Wah-Bo and Leung Yee-Tai had as many as 11 peers in Wing Chun among their colleagues at the Red Boat Opera Company. For example, "Dai Fa Min" Kam (大花面錦), who played the role of the martial painted face, is the ancestor of the Way Yan lineage. The Yuen Kay-San and Pan Nam branches descend from both Wong Wah-Bo and "Dai Fa Min" Kam. Gao Lo Chung ("Tall" Chung) and "Hung Gun" Biu (紅巾彪), also of the Red Boat Opera Company, both passed the art on to relatives, respectively, his son-in-law Yin Lee-Chung and the Wang (王) family. Outside the Red Boat Opera Company, a monk who had taken the name "Dai Dong Fung" (大東風) is named as its ancestor by the Pao Fa Lien (刨花蓮) lineage of Wing Chun.
In this cohort of the Red Boat Opera Company, the role of the virtuous "female" was played by Yik Kam (翼金), better known as "Ching-Deng" Kam because of the role he played. Cho Shun (曹順), who played the "Little Martial" (小武) role, was a student of Yik Kam. By passing the art on to his son Cho Dak-Sang (曹德生), Cho Shun established the Wing Chun lineage of the Cho family of Panyu village.
Read more about this topic: History Of Wing Chun
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