Draft History of Qing

Last updated

The Draft History of Qing (Chinese :清史稿; pinyin :Qīng Shǐ Gǎo) is a draft of the official history of the Qing dynasty compiled and written by a team of over 100 historians led by Zhao Erxun who were hired by the Beiyang government of the Republic of China. The draft was published in 1928, but the Chinese Civil War caused a lack of funding for the project and it was put to an end in 1930. [1] The two sides of the Chinese civil war, the People's Republic of China and Republic of China have attempted to complete it.

Contents

History

The Qing imperial court had long established a Bureau of State Historiography and precompiled its own dynastic history. [1]

The massive book was started in 1914, and the rough copy was finished in about 1927.

1,100 copies of the book were published. The Beiyang government moved 400 of the original draft into the northern provinces, where it re-edited the content twice, thus creating three different copies of the book.

It was banned by the Nationalist Government in 1930. Historian Hsi-yuan Chen writes in retrospect, "Not only will the Draft History of Qing live forever, but also Qing history as such will forever remain in draft." [1]

Contents

The draft contains 529 volumes. It attempts to follow the format of previous official histories, containing four sections:

Shortcomings of draft

Because of the lack of funding, the authors were forced to publish quickly, and consequently this project was never finished, remaining in the draft stages. The authors openly acknowledged this, and admitted there may have been factual or superficial errors. [2]

The draft was later criticized for being biased against the Xinhai Revolution. Notably, it does not have records of historical figures in the revolution, even those that had been born before the end of the Qing dynasty, although it includes biographies of various others who were born after the collapse of the Qing dynasty. The historians, who were Qing loyalists and/or sympathizers, had a tendency to villainize the revolutionaries. [3] In fact, the draft completely avoided the use of the Minguo calendar, which was unacceptable for an official history meant to endorse the rise of a new regime. [1] [ needs update ]

Modern attempts

In 1961, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the declaration of the Republic of China, the Republic of China government in Taiwan published its own History of Qing, added 21 supplementary chapters to the Draft History of Qing and revised many existing chapters to denounce the Communist Party as an illegitimate, impostor regime. It also removed the passages that were derogatory towards the Xinhai Revolution. [4] This edition has not been accepted as the official History of Qing because it is recognized that it was a rushed job published for political purposes. It does not correct most of the many errors known to exist in the Draft History of Qing. [1]

An additional project, attempting to actually write a New History of Qing incorporating new materials and improvements in historiography, lasted from 1988 to 2000 and only published 33 chapters out of the over 500 projected. [1] The New History was abandoned because of the rise of the Pan-Green Coalition, which saw Taiwan as a separate entity from China and therefore not as the new Chinese regime that would be responsible for writing the official history of the previous dynasty.

In 1961, the People's Republic of China also attempted to complete writing the history of the Qing dynasty, but the historians were prevented from doing so by the Cultural Revolution. [3]

In 2002, the People's Republic of China once again announced that it would complete the History of Qing. As of December 2013, the project has been delayed twice and will not be completed until 2016. [5] [ needs update ]

See also

Related Research Articles

New Army Qing dynasty modernised army in response to the first Sino-Japanese war

The New Armies, more fully called the Newly Created Army, was the modernized army corps formed under the Qing dynasty in December 1895, following its defeat in the First Sino-Japanese War. It was envisioned as militia fully trained and equipped according to Western standards. In 1903 an imperial edict expanded it to 36 divisions of 12,500 men each, or total of 450,000. It was known as the Beiyang Army, and was under the command of Yuan Shikai.

The Twenty-Four Histories, also known as the Orthodox Histories, are the Chinese official historical books covering a period from 3000 BC to the Ming dynasty in the 17th century.

1911 Revolution Revolution in China that overthrew the Qing dynasty and established the Republic of China

The 1911 Revolution, also known as the Chinese Revolution or the Xinhai Revolution, ended China's last imperial dynasty, the Manchu-led Qing dynasty, and resulted in the establishment of the Republic of China on 1 January 1912. The revolution was named Xinhai (Hsin-hai) because it occurred in 1911, the year of the Xinhai (辛亥) stem-branch in the sexagenary cycle of the traditional Chinese calendar. The revolution marked the end of 2,000 years of imperial rule and the beginning of China's early republican era.

Dynasties in Chinese history, or Chinese dynasties, were hereditary monarchical regimes that ruled over China during much of its history. From the inauguration of dynastic rule by Yu the Great in circa 2070 BC to the abdication of the Xuantong Emperor on 12 February 1912 in the wake of the Xinhai Revolution, China was ruled by a series of successive dynasties. Dynasties of China were not limited to those established by ethnic Han—the dominant Chinese ethnic group—and its predecessor, the Huaxia tribal confederation, but also included those founded by non-Han peoples.

Five Races Under One Union Political principle of the Republic of China

Five Races Under One Union was one of the major principles upon which the Republic of China was founded in 1911 at the time of the Xinhai Revolution. Its central tenet was the harmonious existence under one nation of what were considered the five major ethnic groups in China: the Han, the Manchus, the Mongols, the Uyghurs, and the Tibetans.

<i>Siku Quanshu</i>

The Siku Quanshu, variously translated as the Complete Library in Four Sections, Imperial Collection of Four, Emperor's Four Treasuries, Complete Library in Four Branches of Literature, or Complete Library of the Four Treasuries, is the largest collection of books in Chinese history. The complete encyclopedia contains an annotated catalogue of 10,680 titles along with a compendiums of 3,593 titles. The Siku Quanshu ended up surpassing the Ming dynasty's 1403 Yongle Encyclopedia in size, which was China's largest encyclopedia prior to the creation of the Siku Quanshu.

Yuan Weishi is a Chinese historian and philosopher.

Zhao Erxun

Zhao Erxun, courtesy name Cishan, art name Wubu, was a Chinese political and military officeholder who lived in the late Qing dynasty. He served in numerous high-ranking positions under the Qing government, including Viceroy of Sichuan, Viceroy of Huguang, and Viceroy of the Three Northeast Provinces. After the fall of the Qing dynasty, he became a historian and was the lead editor of the Draft History of Qing.

The Xinhai Revolution in Xinjiang refers to the fightings of the members of Anti-Manchu Revolutionary Party (反清革命党人) in Xinjiang during the Xinhai Revolution. The Revolution mainly took place in Yili.

Flag of the Qing dynasty Flag of China 1862–1912

The flag of the Qing dynasty was an emblem adopted in the late 19th century featuring the Azure Dragon on a plain yellow field with the red flaming pearl of the three-legged crow in the upper left corner. It became the first national flag of China and is usually referred to as the "Yellow Dragon Flag".

Battle of Yangxia Largest military engagement of the Xinhai Revolution

The Battle of Yangxia, also known as the Defense of Yangxia, was the largest military engagement of the Xinhai Revolution and was fought from October 18-December 1, 1911, between the revolutionaries of the Wuchang Uprising and the loyalist armies of the Qing Dynasty. The battle was waged in Hankou and Hanyang, which along with Wuchang collectively form the tri-cities of Wuhan in central China. Though outnumbered by the Qing armies and possessing inferior arms, the revolutionaries fought valiantly in defense of Hankou and Hanyang. After heavy and bloody fighting, the stronger loyalist forces eventually prevailed by taking over both cities, but 41 days of determined resistance by the Revolutionary Army allowed the revolution to strengthen elsewhere as other provinces defied the Qing Dynasty. The fighting ended after the commander-in-chief of the Qing forces, Gen. Yuan Shikai, agreed to a cease-fire and sent envoys to peace talks with the revolutionaries. Political negotiations eventually led to the abdication of the Last Emperor, the end of the Qing Dynasty and the formation of a unity government for the newly established Republic of China.

The Nine Gates Infantry Commander was a military appointment used in the Qing dynasty (1644–1912) of China. The officer holding this appointment was in charge of safeguarding and monitoring traffic, and overseeing the opening times of the nine gates of the imperial capital, Beijing. The nine gates were Zhengyang Gate, Chongwen Gate, Anding Gate, Fucheng Gate, Xizhi Gate, Dongzhi Gate, Xuanwu Gate, Desheng Gate, and Chaoyang Gate. The officer's judicial responsibilities included night patrol, fire fighting, security checks of civilians, the apprehension and arrest of criminals, and prison keeping. He was also responsible for the security of the Forbidden City. Throughout the history of the Qing dynasty, the position was always held by Manchus rather than Han Chinese.

Republic of China (1912–1949) Former mainland Chinese sovereign state

The Republic of China (ROC) from 1912 to 1949, commonly known as China, was a sovereign state based in mainland China prior to the relocation of its government to Taiwan. At a population of 541 million in 1949, it was the world's most populous country. Covering 11.4 million square kilometres, it consisted of 35 provinces, 1 special administrative region, 2 regions, 12 special municipalities, 14 leagues, and 4 special banners. This period is sometimes referred to as the Republican Era or the Mainland Period.

Late Qing reforms, commonly known as New Policies of the late Qing dynasty, or New Deal of the late Qing dynasty, simply referred to as New Policies, were a series of cultural, economic, educational, military, and political reforms implemented in the last decade of the Qing dynasty to keep the dynasty in power after the invasions of the great powers of the Eight Nation Alliance in league with the ten provinces of the Southeast Mutual Protection in the Boxer Uprising.

Ta-Ching Government Bank Central Bank of the Qing Dynasty

The Ta-Ching Government Bank, known as the Ta-Ching Bank of the Ministry of Revenue (大清戶部銀行) from 1905 to 1908, was the name of the Bank of China as a government agency of the Manchu Qing dynasty until the empire's dissolution in 1911. It was originally created to serve as the central bank of China in 1905, originally as a division of the Ministry of Revenue, and would serve as the country's de facto central bank until the establishment of the Central Bank of China in 1924.

Banknotes of the Ta-Ching Government Bank

The banknotes of the Ta-Ching Government Bank, known as the banknotes of the Ta-Ching Bank of the Ministry of Revenue from 1905 to 1908, were intended to become the main form of paper money in the Qing currency system. These banknotes were issued by the Ta-Ching Government Bank, a national bank established to serve as the central bank of the Qing dynasty. The Ta-Ching Government Bank had branches throughout China and many of its branches outside of its headquarters in Beijing also issued banknotes.

Monarchy of China Form of government in historical China

China was a monarchy from prehistoric times up to 1912 CE, when the Xinhai Revolution overthrew the Qing dynasty in favor of the Republic of China. The succession of mythological monarchs of China were non-hereditary. Dynastic rule began in circa 2070 BCE when Yu the Great and his son Qi established the Xia dynasty, and lasted until 1912 CE when dynastic rule collapsed together with the monarchical system.

19 Jinchaidai Alley, in Shangcheng District, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China, is a former residence constructed during the Qing dynasty, which was used during the Xinhai Revolution that led to the dynasty's collapse. Despite concerns over its historical significance, the building began to be demolished in 2010 despite its addition to the fifth batch of protected historical buildings in Hangzhou earlier that year, although its demolition was stopped by the city government's intervention. The building has now been renovated, and serves as part of the campus of the Jianlan Middle School's Lanxin Academy of Classical Learning, a private school in the city.

Cantonese nationalism refers to the movements for independence of Guangdong from the People's Republic of China. These movements wanted to establish an independent and autonomous political entity. In modern China, this idea has been put forward by others including Kang Youwei's followers and Ou Jiajia. Kang Youwei's followers later opposed the claim. In his book "New Guangdong", Ou Shi put forward the idea of establishing "Guangdong of Guangdong". In 1911, there was a revolution. At the end of October 1911, members of the Guangdong Alliance Chen Jiongming, Deng Jun and Peng Ruihai organized civil army uprisings throughout Guangdong. On November 9, Chen Jiongming led his troops to restore Huizhou. On the same day, Guangdong announced independence and established the Guangdong Military Government of the Republic of China. On January 1, 1912, the Republic of China was established, and Guangdong Province became a province in the Republic of China. In the early years of the Republic of China Guangdong Province drafted the "Guangdong Provincial Draft". This is inspired by the idea of autonomous provinces. The draft passed by the Guangdong Provincial Assembly on December 19, 1921. However, this proposal for the future planning of Guangdong Province did not receive sufficient support, and it was aborted as the Soviet forces intervened in the Far East and the KMT and the Communist Party went northward.

The Imperial Edict of the Abdication of the Qing Emperor was an official decree issued by the Empress Dowager Longyu on behalf of the six-year-old Xuantong Emperor, who was the monarch of the Qing dynasty, on 12 February 1912, as a response to the Xinhai Revolution. The revolution led to the self-declared independence of 13 southern Chinese provinces and the sequent peace negotiation between the rest of Imperial China with the collective of the southern provinces. The issuance of the Imperial Edict ended the Qing dynasty of China, which lasted 276 years, and the era of imperial rule in China, which lasted 2,132 years.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Hsi-yuan Chen, 'Last chapter unfinished. The making of the official Qing History and the crisis of Traditional Chinese Historiography', in: Historiography East and West, 2 (2004), pp. 173-204. (Abstract)
  2. Preface, The Draft History of Qing Revised Edition, 1977, 中华书局.
  3. 1 2 Wilkinson, Endymion (2012). Chinese history : a new manual. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Asia Center. pp. 834–5. ISBN   978-0674067158.
  4. "台灣版《清史》一年速成 筆墨官司幾上幾下". big5.huaxia.com. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
  5. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-27. Retrieved 2014-07-21.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)