In a moment that made many Chinese proud, 21 Tibetan-Chinese, 8 Han-Chinese, and 1 Tujia-Chinese helped bring the 2008 Olympic Torch to top of the worlds’ highest peak.
The name of the peak in Tibetan is ཇོ་མོ་གླང་མ (jo-mo glang-ma ri), which is often translated as “Great Mother” (literal translation as given in Chinese: “mother of Earth”). The first written recording of the peak comes from 1717, when a Beijing cartographer sent by the Qing Emperor Kangxi published it as part of an imperial map (皇舆全览图). The peak was marked on the map in the first half of the 18th century in Manchu and Hanyu as 朱母郎马阿林 (zhu mu lang ma a lin). The name of the peak in Chinese is now 珠穆朗玛峰 (zhu mu lang ma feng), transliterated into English as Mount Qomolangma.
British cartographers would first identify this peak nearly 150 years later, in 1847. But the name selected by the British Royal Geographical Society still dominates in the West today: Mount Everest, after British surveyor George Everest. Several years back, China encouraged the world to rename the peak’s name in English based on its original Tibetan name, but the Western world hasn’t followed. In English, they continue to refer to the mountain by the name of a Knight of the British Realm.
ADDED: AP wire report: “Tibetan woman holds Olympic flame atop Everest“