Eight-Nation Alliance

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Eight-Nation Alliance
Traditional Chinese 八國聯軍
Simplified Chinese 八国联军
The eight nations with their naval ensigns, from left to right:
Regia Marina,
United States Navy,
French Navy,
Austro-Hungarian Navy,
Imperial Japanese Navy,
Imperial German Navy,
Imperial Russian Navy and
Royal Navy. Japanese print, 1900. BoxerTroops.jpg
The eight nations with their naval ensigns, from left to right: Flag of Italy (1861-1946) crowned.svg Regia Marina, Flag of the United States (1896-1908).svg United States Navy, Flag of France (1794-1958).svg French Navy, Austria-Hungary-flag-1869-1914-naval-1786-1869-merchant.svg  Austro-Hungarian Navy, Naval ensign of the Empire of Japan.svg  Imperial Japanese Navy, War Ensign of Germany 1903-1918.svg  Imperial German Navy, Naval Jack of Russia.svg Imperial Russian Navy and Naval Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg  Royal Navy. Japanese print, 1900.
The Eight-Nation Alliance in Beijing following the defeat of the Boxer Rebellion. Immediately identifiable flags in picture:
Italy,
France,
Germany,
Russia and
Japan, 1901. EightNationsCrime02.jpg
The Eight-Nation Alliance in Beijing following the defeat of the Boxer Rebellion. Immediately identifiable flags in picture: Flag of Italy (1861-1946) crowned.svg Italy, Flag of France (1794-1958).svg France, Flag of the German Empire.svg Germany, Flag of The Russian Empire 1883.svg Russia and Merchant flag of Japan (1870).svg Japan, 1901.
Boxer Rebellion and Eight-Nation Alliance, China 1900-01 Boxer Rebellion.png
Boxer Rebellion and Eight-Nation Alliance, China 1900–01

The Eight-Nation Alliance was a multi-national military coalition set up in response to the Boxer Rebellion in China. The eight nations were Japan, Russia, Britain, France, the United States, Germany, Italy and Austria-Hungary. [1] In the summer of 1900, when the international legations in Beijing were besieged by Boxer rebels supported by the Qing government, the coalition dispatched their armed forces, in the name of humanitarian intervention, to defend their respective nations' citizens, as well as a number of Chinese Christians who had taken shelter in the legations. The incident ended with a coalition victory and the signing of the Boxer Protocol.

The term "coalition" is the denotation for a group formed when two or more people, factions, states, political parties, militaries etc. agree to work together temporarily in a partnership to achieve a common goal. The word coalition connotes a coming together to achieve a goal.

Boxer Rebellion anti-imperialist uprising which took place in China

The Boxer Rebellion (拳亂), Boxer Uprising, or Yihetuan Movement (義和團運動) was an anti-imperialist, anti-foreign, and anti-Christian uprising that took place in China between 1899 and 1901, toward the end of the Qing dynasty. It was initiated by the Militia United in Righteousness (Yihetuan), known in English as the Boxers, for many of their members had been practitioners of Chinese martial arts, also referred to in the west as Chinese Boxing. The uprising took place against a background that included severe drought and disruption caused by the growth of foreign spheres of influence. After several months of growing violence in Shandong and the North China plain against the foreign and Christian presence in June 1900, Boxer fighters, convinced they were invulnerable to foreign weapons, converged on Beijing with the slogan Support the Qing government and exterminate the foreigners. Foreigners and Chinese Christians sought refuge in the Legation Quarter.

Qing dynasty Former empire in Eastern Asia, last imperial regime of China

The Qing dynasty, officially the Great Qing, was the last imperial dynasty of China. It was established in 1636, and ruled China proper from 1644 to 1912. It was preceded by the Ming dynasty and succeeded by the Republic of China. The Qing multi-cultural empire lasted for almost three centuries and formed the territorial base for modern China. It was the fifth largest empire in world history. The dynasty was founded by the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan in Manchuria. In the late sixteenth century, Nurhaci, originally a Ming Jianzhou Guard vassal, began organizing "Banners", military-social units that included Manchu, Han, and Mongol elements. Nurhaci formed the Manchu clans into a unified entity and officially proclaimed the Later Jin in 1616. By 1636, his son Hong Taiji began driving Ming forces out of the Liaodong Peninsula and declared a new dynasty, the Qing.

Contents

Background and main events

The Boxers, a peasant movement, had attacked and killed foreign missionaries, nationals and Chinese Christians across northern China in 1899 and 1900. The Qing government and Imperial Army supported the Boxers and under the Manchu general Ronglu, besieged foreign diplomats and civilians taking refuge in the Legation Quarter in Peking. [2] After failing in its initial attempt to relieve the Legation Quarter, in August 1900 the Allied force marched to Peking from Tianjin, defeated the Qing Imperial Army's Wuwei Corps in several engagements, and brought an end to the Boxer Rebellion and the siege. The members of the Alliance then occupied Peking and proceeded to loot and pillage the capital. [3] [4] The forces consisted of approximately 45,000 troops, from various countries. At the end of the campaign, the Qing Imperial government signed the Boxer Protocol of 1901. [5]

The Manchu are an ethnic minority in China and the people from whom Manchuria derives its name. They are sometimes called "red-tasseled Manchus", a reference to the ornamentation on traditional Manchu hats. The Later Jin (1616–1636), and Qing dynasty (1636–1912) were established and ruled by Manchus, who are descended from the Jurchen people who earlier established the Jin dynasty (1115–1234) in China.

Ronglu Qing dynasty politician and military leader

Ronglu, courtesy name Zhonghua, was a Manchu political and military leader of the late Qing dynasty. He was born in the Guwalgiya clan, which was under the Plain White Banner of the Manchu Eight Banners. Deeply favoured by Empress Dowager Cixi, he served in a number of important civil and military positions in the Qing government, including the Zongli Yamen, Grand Council, Grand Secretary, Viceroy of Zhili, Beiyang Trade Minister, Secretary of Defence, Nine Gates Infantry Commander, and Wuwei Corps Commander. He was also the maternal grandfather of Puyi, the last Emperor of China and the Qing dynasty.

Tianjin Municipality in Peoples Republic of China

Tianjin, alternately romanized as Tientsin, is a municipality and a coastal metropolis in northern China and one of the nine national central cities of the People's Republic of China (PRC), with a total population of 15,621,200 as of 2016 estimation. Its built-up area, made up of 12 central districts, was home to 12,491,300 inhabitants in 2016 and is also the world's 29th-largest agglomeration and 11th-most populous city proper.

Siege of the International Legations and the North Cathedral

Locations of foreign diplomatic legations and front lines in Peking during the siege. Western Legations Peking 1900 Clowes Vol VII.jpeg
Locations of foreign diplomatic legations and front lines in Peking during the siege.

The diplomatic compound in Peking was under siege by the Wuwei Rear Division of the Chinese army and some Boxers (Yihetuan), for 55 days, from 20 June to 14 August 1900. A total of 473 foreign civilians, 409 soldiers from eight countries, and about 3,000 Chinese Christians took refuge in the Legation Quarter. [6] Under the command of the British minister to China, Claude Maxwell MacDonald, the legation staff and security personnel defended the compound with small arms and one old muzzle-loaded cannon discovered and unearthed by Chinese Christians who turned it over to the Allies; it was nicknamed the International Gun because the barrel was British, the carriage Italian, the shells Russian, and the crew American. [7]

Beijing Legation Quarter road in Beijing, China

The Beijing Legation Quarter was the area in Beijing, China where a number of foreign legations were located between 1861 and 1959. In the Chinese language, the area is known as Dong Jiaomin Xiang, which is the name of the hutong through the area. It is located in the Dongcheng District, immediately to the east of Tiananmen Square. The city of Beijing was commonly called Peking by Europeans and Americans until the 1950s.

Claude Maxwell MacDonald British diplomat

Colonel Sir Claude Maxwell MacDonald, was a British soldier and diplomat, best known for his service in China and Japan.

Also under siege in Peking was the North Cathedral, the Beitang of the Catholic Church. The Beitang was defended by 43 French and Italian soldiers, 33 foreign Catholic priests and nuns and about 3,200 Chinese Catholics. The defenders suffered heavy casualties from lack of food and Chinese mines that exploded in tunnels dug beneath the compound. [8]

Member nations

Forces of the Eight-Nation Alliance
Relief of the Legations

Troops of the Eight nations alliance 1900.jpg
Troops of the Eight-Nation Alliance in 1900 (Russia excepted).
Left to right: Britain, United States, Australia, India,
Germany, France, Austria-Hungary, Italy, Japan
CountriesWarships
(units)
Marines
(men)
Army
(men)
Merchant flag of Japan (1870).svg  Empire of Japan 1854020,300
Flag of The Russian Empire 1883.svg  Russian Empire 1075012,400
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom 82,02010,000
Flag of France (1794-1958).svg  French Republic 53903,130
Flag of the United States (1896-1908).svg  United States 22953,125
Flag of the German Empire.svg  German Empire 5600300
Flag of Italy (1861-1946) crowned.svg  Kingdom of Italy 2802,500
Flag of Austria-Hungary (1869-1918).svg  Austria-Hungary 4296unknown
Total544,97151,755
Eight-Nation Alliance soldiers and European recruits Boxer2y.jpg
Eight-Nation Alliance soldiers and European recruits

Austria-Hungary

Austria-Hungary had a single cruiser SMS Zenta on station at the beginning of the rebellion, based at the Russian concession of Port Arthur. [9] Detachments of sailors from the Zenta were the only Austro-Hungarian forces to see action. [10] Some were involved in defending the legations under siege while another detachment was involved in the rescue attempts. [10] In June, the Austro-Hungarians helped hold the Tianjin railway against Boxer forces and also fired upon several armed junks on the Hai River near Tong-Tcheou in Peking. They also took part in the seizure of the Taku Forts commanding the approaches to Tianjin, and the boarding and capture of four Chinese destroyers by Capt. Roger Keyes of HMS Fame.

Austria-Hungary Constitutional monarchic union between 1867 and 1918

Austria-Hungary, often referred to as the Austro-Hungarian Empire or the Dual Monarchy, was a constitutional monarchy in Central and Eastern Europe between 1867 and 1918. It was formed when the Austrian Empire adopted a new constitution; as a result Austria (Cisleithania) and Hungary (Transleithania) were placed on equal footing. It dissolved into several new states at the end of the First World War.

SMS <i>Zenta</i> ship

SMS Zenta was a small protected cruiser built for the Austro-Hungarian Navy in the late 1890s. She was lead ship of her class and named after the Battle of Zenta.

Concessions in China European spheres of influence in China

Concessions in China were a group of concessions within late imperial China and during the Republic of China (1911-1949), which were governed and occupied by foreign powers, and are frequently associated with colonialism.

The Austro-Hungarian Navy also sent the cruisers SMS Kaiserin und Königin Maria Theresia, SMS Kaiserin Elisabeth, SMS Aspern and a company of marines to China. Arriving in September, however, they were too late as most of the fighting had ended and the legations relieved. The cruisers together with the Zenta were involved in shelling and capture of several Chinese forts. [10] The Austro-Hungarians suffered minimal casualties during the rebellion. After the Boxer uprising, a cruiser was maintained permanently on the Chinese coast and a detachment of marines was deployed at the Austro-Hungarian embassy in Peking (Beijing). [10] Lieutenant Georg Ludwig von Trapp, made famous in the 1959 musical The Sound of Music , was decorated for bravery aboard SMS Kaiserin und Königin Maria Theresia during the rebellion. [11] [12]

Austro-Hungarian Navy navy

The Austro-Hungarian Navy or Imperial and Royal War Navy was the naval force of Austria-Hungary. Ships of the k.u.k. Kriegsmarine were designated SMS, for Seiner Majestät Schiff. Existing between 1867 and 1918, the k.u.k. Kriegsmarine came into being after the formation of Austria-Hungary in 1867, and ceased to exist upon the Empire's defeat and subsequent collapse at the end of World War I.

SMS <i>Kaiserin und Königin Maria Theresia</i> ship

SMS Kaiserin und Königin Maria Theresia was an armored cruiser used by the imperial Austro-Hungarian Navy from 1895 to 1917; she was the first ship of that type built by the Austro-Hungarian Navy. The ship was a unique design, built by the Stabilimento Tecnico Triestino shipyard in Trieste; she was laid down in July 1891, launched in April 1893, and completed in November 1894. Armed with a main battery of two 24-centimeter (9.4 in) guns and eight 15 cm (5.9 in) guns, the ship provided the basis for two subsequent armored cruiser designs for the Austro-Hungarian Navy.

SMS <i>Kaiserin Elisabeth</i> steamboat

SMS Kaiserin Elisabeth was a Kaiser Franz Joseph I-class protected cruiser of the Austro-Hungarian Navy. Named in honor of the Empress Elisabeth, consort of Emperor Franz Josef, the cruiser was designed for overseas service and in fact was stationed in China at the outbreak of World War I in 1914.

British Empire

At the outset of the Boxer Rebellion, Britain was engaged in the Boer conflict in South Africa. [13] Consequently, with the army tied down by the war, the British had to rely on the China Squadron and troops largely from India. The Royal Navy's China Squadron, stationed off Tientsin, consisted of the battleships Barfleur and Centurion; the cruisers Alacrity, Algerine, Aurora, Endymion, and Orlando; and the destroyers Whiting and Fame. [14] British forces were the third-largest contingent in the international alliance, and consisted of the following units: Naval Brigade, 12th Battery Royal Field Artillery, Hong Kong & Singapore Artillery, 2nd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1st Bengal Lancers, 7th Rajput Infantry, 24th Punjab Infantry, 1st Sikh Infantry, Hong Kong Regiment, 1st Chinese Regiment, Royal Engineers, and other support personnel. [15] [16]

Australian colonies

The Australian colonies did not become a unified federation until 1901. As such several of the colonies, independently of each other, sent contingents of naval and army personnel to support the British contingent. For example, South Australia sent its entire navy: the gunboat HMCS Protector. [17] Australia, therefore, was not an official member of the eight-nation alliance and its forces arrived too late to see significant action. [18]

India

Britain provided 10,000 troops, of which a large part were Indian troops, made out of units of Baluchis, Sikhs, Gurkhas, Rajputs and Punjabis. [19] [20] [21]

Germany

German troops of the I. Eastasia Infantry Regiment with captured Boxer flags. Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R19096, Boxeraufstand, 1. Ostasiatisches Infanterie-Regiment.jpg
German troops of the I. Eastasia Infantry Regiment with captured Boxer flags.

Germany had gained a presence in China after the Juye Incident in which two German missionaries were murdered in November 1897. The concession in Kiaochow with the port of Tsingtao, was used as a naval base for the East Asia Squadron and a trading port. The German concession was governed and garrisoned by the Imperial German Navy. At the outbreak of the Boxer Rebellion in June 1900, the garrison of the concession was composed of the III. Seebataillon with 1,126 men, a marine/naval artillery battery, about 800 men of a Kommando Detachment and sailors from the East Asian Squadron. [22]

German officers in Qingdao during the Boxer Rebellion German officers in Qingdao 1900.jpg
German officers in Qingdao during the Boxer Rebellion

With the increasing threat of the Boxers, a small armed group from the III. Seebatallion was sent to Peking and Tientsin to protect German interests there while the majority of the remaining forces stayed behind to prevent attacks against Tsingtao. The siege of the foreign legations in Peking soon convinced Germany and the other European powers that more forces were needed to be sent to China to reinforce allied forces. The first troops dispatched from Germany were the Marine-Expeditionskorps which consisted of the I. and II. Seebatallions. They were soon followed by the Ostasiatische Expeditionskorps (East Asian Expeditionary Corps), which was a force of about 15,000 of mostly volunteers from the regular Army under the command of Gen Alfred Count von Waldersee. It comprised initially four and later six two-battalion infantry regiments and a Jäger company, single regiments of cavalry and field artillery and various support and logistics units. [22] On arrival in China it incorporated the Marine-Expeditionskorps that had preceded it to China by a few weeks. [22]

However, the majority of the German forces dispatched arrived too late to take part in any of the major actions; [22] the first elements of the Corps arrived at Taku on September 21 [22] after the legations had been relieved. As a result, most of the Corps were mainly employed for garrison duties, they did fight a number of smaller engagements against pockets of remaining Boxers. [23] The Corps was later disbanded and recalled to Germany early in 1901. [23]

France

French Colonial Infantry Marching through the French Concession, Tientsin French Colonial Infantry Marching through the French Concession, Tientsin.jpg
French Colonial Infantry Marching through the French Concession, Tientsin

Three battalions of marines, the II/9th, and the I and II/11th RIMa which were stationed in French Indochina were sent to China. They joined the 1st brigade of Marines commanded by general Henri-Nicolas Frey. In July 1900, the 2nd and 3rd battalions of infantry embarked from Toulon but did not reach China until September. In October, following losses and rotations of duty, the first three battalions sent were included in the 16th regiment of marines by order of general Régis Voyron, commander in chief of the French Expeditionary Corps in China. On 1 January 1901, the 16th RIMa was renamed the 16th regiment of colonial infantry. At the end of the campaign, it moved to a new base in Tianjin, with its headquarters in the former buildings of the Chinese admiralty. [24]

Italy

Postcard showing Waldersee inspecting Italian troops. Graf Waldersee inspiziert die Italiener 1901.jpg
Postcard showing Waldersee inspecting Italian troops.

In 1898, the Italians had demanded San Mun Bay as a concession; however, the Chinese refused. [25] The Italian Navy then dispatched a squadron to San Mun Bay, but no further action was taken. The squadron remained there, and when in the summer of 1900 the Boxer Rebellion broke out, detachments from Italian cruisers were sent to Peking. Italian forces were initially made up of sailors from warships. [26] A portion of these helped the French defend the Pei Tang Catholic cathedral while another defended the European Legations in Peking during the famous fifty-five-day siege. [25] Italian sailors also took part in the attacks on the Dagu forts and in capturing Tientsin. [25] However, a larger contingent was later dispatched from Italy, including 83 officers, 1,882 troops, and 178 horses. The contingent included a battalion of Bersaglieri, which was formed from one company each from the 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th, and 11th Bersaglieri Regiments. In addition, the 24th Line Regiment, volunteers from the Alpini, a battery of machine guns, and some engineers were also sent to China. [26] A battery of field guns was also supplied by the Italian Navy. [26] The total force of 1,965 officers and men, which composed the Italian expeditionary force against the Boxers, was officially referred to as the Italian Royal Troops in China. [25] In August 1900, when this larger force reached the capital, the Italians had seven cruisers and 2,543 men in the country. They were involved in numerous operations along the coast and in the interior of northern China. [25]

The larger part of the approximately 2,000 Italian soldiers and officers who fought in the campaign against the Boxers were recalled from Peking after the end of the conflict. Italy obtained a 151-acre concession area in Tianjin and the right to occupy the Shanhaiguan fort. [27] [25] A small naval squadron and a naval garrison were maintained in China to protect Italian interests there. [25]

Japan

Japanese marines who served under the British commander Edward Hobart Seymour. BoxerJapaneseMarines.jpg
Japanese marines who served under the British commander Edward Hobart Seymour.

Japan provided the largest contingent of troops; 20,840, as well as 18 warships. Of the total number, 20,300 were Imperial Japanese Army troops of the 5th Infantry Division under Lt. General Yamaguchi Motoomi; the remainder were 540 naval rikusentai(Marines) from the Imperial Japanese Navy. [28]

At the beginning of the Boxer Rebellion the Japanese only had 215 troops in northern China stationed at Tientsin, nearly all of them were naval rikusentai from the Kasagi and the Atago, under the command of Captain Shimamura Hayao. [29] The Japanese were able to contribute 52 men to the Seymour Expedition. [29] On June 12, the advance of the Seymour Expedition was halted some 30 miles from the capital, by mixed Boxer and Chinese regular army forces. The vastly outnumbered allies withdrew to the vicinity of Tianjin, having suffered more than 300 casualties. [30] The army general staff in Tokyo had become aware of the worsening conditions in China and had drafted ambitious contingency plans, [31] but the government in the wake of the Triple Intervention five years prior, refused to deploy large number of troops unless requested by the western powers. [31] However three days later, a provisional force of 1,300 troops commanded by Major General Fukushima Yasumasa, was to be deployed to northern China. Fukushima was chosen because his ability to speak fluent English which enabled him to communicate with the British commander, the force landed near Tianjin on July 5. [31]

On June 17, naval Rikusentai from the Kasagi and Atago had joined British, Russian, and German sailors to seize the Dagu forts near Tianjin. [31] The British, in light of the precarious situation were compelled to ask Japan for additional reinforcements as the Japanese had the only readily available forces in the region. [31] Britain at the time was heavily engaged in the Boer War, consequently a large part of the British army was tied down in South Africa, also deploying large numbers of troops from its garrisons in India would take too much time and weaken internal security there. [31] Overriding personal doubts, Foreign Minister Aoki Shūzō calculated that the advantages of participating in an allied coalition were too attractive to ignore. Prime Minister Yamagata likewise concurred, but others in the cabinet demanded that there be guarantees from the British in return for the risks and costs of the major deployment of Japanese troops. [31] On July 6, the 5th Infantry Division was alerted for possible deployment to China, but no timetable was set for its deployment. Two days later on July 8, with more ground troops urgently needed to lift the siege of the foreign legations at Peking, the British ambassador offered the Japanese government one million British pounds in exchange for Japanese participation. [31]

Shortly afterward, advance units of the 5th Division departed for China, bringing Japanese strength to 3,800 personnel of the then 17,000 allied force. [31] The commander of the 5th Division, Lt. General Yamaguchi Motoomi had taken operational control from Fukushima. Japanese troops were involved in the storming of Tianjin on July 14, [31] after which the allies consolidated and awaited the remainder of the 5th Division and other coalition reinforcements. By that time the siege of legations was lifted on August 14, the Japanese force of 13,000 was the largest single contingent, made up about 40 percent of the approximately 33,000 strong allied expeditionary force. [31] Japanese troops involved in the fighting had acquitted themselves well, although a British military observer felt their aggressiveness, densely packed formations, and over willingness to attack cost them excessive and disproportionate casualties. [32] For example, during the Tianjin fighting, the Japanese suffered more than half of the allied casualties, 400 out of 730, but comprised less than one quarter (3,800) of the force of 17,000. [32] Similarly at Beijing, where the Japanese accounted for almost two-thirds of the losses, 280 of 453, but constituted slightly less than half of the assault force. [32]

Russia

Russian troops during the Boxer Rebellion Russian soldiers during the boxer rebellion.jpg
Russian troops during the Boxer Rebellion

Russia supplied the second largest force after Japan, with 12,400 troops, consisting mainly of garrisons from Port Arthur and Vladivostok. [33] On 30 November 1900, Admiral Alekseyev compelled the Chinese military governor of Shenyang, Zeng Qi, to sign an agreement that effectively ended Chinese sovereignty over Manchuria and placed it under Russian control. [34]

United States

American troops during the Boxer Rebellion. BoxerAmericanTroops.jpg
American troops during the Boxer Rebellion.

In the United States, the suppression of the Boxer Rebellion was known as the China Relief Expedition. [35] The United States was able to play a major role in suppressing the Boxer Rebellion largely due to the presence of American forces deployed in the Philippines since the US annexation after the Spanish–American War in 1898. [36] Of the foreigners under siege in Beijing, there were 56 American Sailors and Marines from the USS Oregon and USS Newark. [36] The main American formations deployed to relieve the siege were the 9th Infantry and 14th Infantry regiments, elements of the 6th Cavalry regiment, the 5th Artillery regiment, and a Marine battalion, all under the command of Adna Chaffee. [37] [38] Future President Herbert Hoover and Mrs. Lou Henry Hoover were living in the foreign compound during the siege when Mr. Hoover was working for the Chinese Engineering and Mining Company. Mr. Hoover helped erect barricades and formed a protective force of the able bodied men. Mrs. Hoover helped set up a hospital, nursed the wounded, set up a dairy, took part in the night watch, took tea to sentries and carried a Mauser .38 semi-automatic pistol. [39] [40]

Aftermath

Troops of the eight aforementioned nations invaded and occupied Peking on 14 August 1900. Empress Dowager Cixi, the Emperor and high government officials fled the Imperial Palace for Xi'an and sent Li Hongzhang for peace talks with the Alliance. [41]

In a research article, Kenneth Clark states: "Following the taking of Peking, troops from the international force looted the capital city and even ransacked the Forbidden City, with many Chinese treasures finding their way to Europe." [42]

Atrocities

A large number of Christians were killed by the boxers before the rebellion. [43] A group of Christians that were killed before and during the rebellion are commemorated to this day as the Holy Martyrs of China by the Orthodox [44] and Catholic churches. [45]

German and Japanese soldiers witnessing the street execution of a Chinese boxer. EightNationsCrime01.jpg
German and Japanese soldiers witnessing the street execution of a Chinese boxer.

An unknown number of people believed to be Boxers were beheaded both during and after the uprising. This became the subject of an early short film. [46]

A U.S. Marine wrote that he saw German and Russian troops bayonet women after raping them. [47]

In Peking, it was alleged that Bishop Pierre-Marie-Alphonse Favier-Duperron posted a bulletin, effective 18–26 August, declaring that Catholic Christians might steal those bare necessities required to survive, and that robbery of 50 taels of silver or fewer needed neither reporting nor compensation. The accusation was denied by the Bishop. [48]

See also

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Kansu Braves

The Kansu Braves or Gansu Army was a unit of 10,000 Chinese Muslim troops from the northwestern province of Kansu in the last decades the Qing dynasty (1644–1912). Loyal to the Qing, the Braves were recruited in 1895 to suppress a Muslim revolt in Gansu. Under the command of General Dong Fuxiang (1839–1908), they were transferred to the Beijing metropolitan area in 1898, where they officially became the Rear Division of the Wuwei Corps, a modern army that protected the imperial capital. The Gansu Army included Hui Muslims, Salar Muslims, Dongxiang Muslims, and Bonan Muslims.

Seymour Expedition

The Seymour Expedition was an attempt by a multi-national military force to march to Beijing and protect the diplomatic legations and foreign nationals in the city from attacks by Boxers in 1900. The Chinese army defeated Seymour's expedition and forced it to return to Tianjin (Tientsin).

Battle of Beicang

The Battle of Beicang (Peitsang), during the Boxer Rebellion, was fought August 5, 1900, between the Eight Nation Alliance and the Chinese army. The Chinese army was forced out of its prepared entrenchments and retreated to Yangcun. The Eight-Nation Alliance army at Beicang consisted of Japanese, Russian, British, American and French troops. The Japanese spearheaded the Alliance victory at Beicang.

Siege of the International Legations Battle of the Boxer Rebellion

The Siege of the International Legations occurred in the summer of 1900 in Peking, the capital of the Qing Empire, during the Boxer Rebellion. Menaced by the Boxers, an anti-Christian, anti-foreign peasant movement, 900 soldiers, marines, and civilians, largely from Europe, Japan, and the United States, and about 2,800 Chinese Christians took refuge in the Peking Legation Quarter. The Qing government took the side of the Boxers. The foreigners and Chinese Christians in the Legation Quarter survived a 55-day siege by the Qing Army and Boxers. The siege was broken by an international military force which marched from the coast of China, defeated the Qing army, and occupied Beijing. The siege was called by the New York Sun "the most exciting episode ever known to civilization."

Battle of Langfang Seymour Expedition 1900

The Battle of Langfang was a battle in the Seymour Expedition during the Boxer Rebellion, in June 1900, involving Chinese imperial troops, the Chinese Muslim Kansu Braves and Boxers ambushing and defeating the Eight-Nation Alliance expeditionary army on its way to Beijing, pushing the Alliance forces to retreat back to Tientsin (Tianjin). The Alliance force at Langfang consisted of Germans.

The Gaselee Expedition was a successful relief by a multi-national military force to march to Beijing and protect the diplomatic legations and foreign nationals in the city from attacks in 1900. The expedition was part of the war of the Boxer Rebellion.

The Russian invasion of Manchuria occurred in the aftermath of the First Sino-Japanese War (1894–5) when concerns regarding China's defeat by the Japanese and the latter's occupation of Manchuria caused the Russians to speed up their long held designs for imperial expansion across Eurasia.

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