Although known to the Chinese by Tang Dynasty at the latest (and probably earlier), mail armour never saw widespread use in China. Even during the Ming and Qing period, in which mail armour was relatively common, period sources always speak of mail armour as something foreign and exotic, originated from ancient Qiang people (羌族).
Ming period mail shirt, from National Museum of China.
Common Chinese name for mail armour is Suo Zi Jia (鎖子甲), but Ming Chinese had another name for this armour: Gang Si Lian Huan Jia (鋼絲連鐶甲, lit. 'Steel wire linked chain armour'). According to late Ming encyclopedia Tong Ya (《通雅》), Chinese mail utilises 4-in-1 weave pattern, similar to European mail.
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