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Northeast China.svg
"Manchuria" most often refers to Northeast China in red ("Inner Manchuria") and the Inner Mongolia region in light red
Romanization Dergi Ilan Golo

Early history

A 12th-century Jurchen stone tortoise in today's Ussuriysk Ussuriysk-Stone-Tortoise-S-3542.jpg
A 12th-century Jurchen stone tortoise in today's Ussuriysk
The Three Kingdoms of Korea occupied roughly half of Manchuria, 5th century AD Three Kingdoms of Korea Map.png
The Three Kingdoms of Korea occupied roughly half of Manchuria, 5th century AD

Manchuria was the homeland of several ethnic groups, including Manchu, Mongols, Koreans, Nanai, Nivkhs, Ulchs, Hui and possibly Turkic peoples and ethnic Han Chinese [39] [40] in southern Manchuria. Various ethnic groups and their respective kingdoms, including the Sushen, Donghu, Xianbei, Wuhuan, Mohe, Khitan and Jurchens, have risen to power in Manchuria. Various Koreanic kingdoms such as Gojoseon (before 108 BCE), Buyeo (2nd century BCE to 494 CE) and Goguryeo (37 BCE to 688 CE) also became established in large parts of this area. The Han dynasty (202 BCE to 9 CE and 25 to 220 CE), the Cao Wei dynasty (220–266), the Western Jin dynasty (266–316), the Tang dynasty (618–690 and 705–907) and some other minor kingdoms of China established control in parts of Manchuria and in some cases tributary relations with peoples in the area. [41] Parts of northwestern Manchuria came under the control of the First Turkic Khaganate of 552–603 and of the Eastern Turkic Khaganate of 581–630. Early Manchuria had a mixed economy of hunting, fishing, livestock, and agriculture.

With the Song dynasty (960-1269) to the south, the Khitan people of Inner Mongolia created the Liao dynasty (916-1125) and conquered Outer Mongolia and Manchuria, going on to control the adjacent part of the Sixteen Prefectures in Northern China as well. The Liao dynasty became the first state to control all of Manchuria. [42]

The Mongol Yuan province of Liaoyang included northern Korea Yuan dynasty and Manchuria.jpg
The Mongol Yuan province of Liaoyang included northern Korea
Manchuria is the homeland of the Jurchens who became the Manchus. Map-Qing Dynasty 1616-en.jpg
Manchuria is the homeland of the Jurchens who became the Manchus.

In the early 12th century the Tungusic Jurchen people, who were Liao's tributaries, overthrew the Liao and formed the Jin dynasty (1115–1234), which went on to control parts of Northern China and Mongolia after a series of successful military campaigns. During the Mongol Yuan dynasty rule of China (1271–1368), [43] Manchuria was administered as Liaoyang province. In 1375 Naghachu, a Mongol official of the Mongolia-based Northern Yuan dynasty of 1368–1635 in Liaoyang province invaded Liaodong, but later surrendered to the Ming dynasty in 1387. In order to protect the northern border areas, the Ming dynasty decided to "pacify" the Jurchens in order to deal with its problems with Yuan remnants along its northern border. The Ming solidified control over Manchuria under the Yongle Emperor (r. 1402–1424), establishing the Nurgan Regional Military Commission of 1409–1435. Starting in the 1580s, a Jianzhou Jurchen chieftain, Nurhaci (1558–1626), started to unify Jurchen tribes of the region. Over the next several decades, the Jurchen took control of most of Manchuria. In 1616 Nurhaci founded the Later Jin dynasty, which later became known as the Qing dynasty. The Qing defeated the Evenk-Daur federation led by the Evenki chief Bombogor and beheaded Bombogor in 1640, with Qing armies massacring and deporting Evenkis and absorbing the survivors into the Banners. [44]

A Jurchen man hunting from his horse, from a 15th-century ink-and-color painting on silk A Tartar Huntsmen on His Horse.jpg
A Jurchen man hunting from his horse, from a 15th-century ink-and-color painting on silk

Chinese cultural and religious influence such as Chinese New Year, the "Chinese god", motifs such as the dragon, spirals, and scrolls, agriculture, husbandry, methods of heating, and material goods such as iron cooking-pots, silk, and cotton spread among the Amur natives including the Udeghes, Ulchis, and Nanais. [45]

In 1644, after peasant rebels sacked the Ming dynasty's capital of Beijing, the Jurchens (now called Manchus) allied with Ming general Wu Sangui and seized control of Beijing, overthrowing the short-lived Shun dynasty (1644–1649) and establishing Qing-dynasty rule (1644–1912) over all of China. The Manchu conquest of China involved the deaths of over 25 million people. [46] The Qing dynasty built the Willow Palisade – a system of ditches and embankments – during the later 17th century to restrict the movement of Han civilians into Jilin and Heilongjiang. [47] Only bannermen, including Chinese bannermen, were allowed to settle in Jilin and Heilongjiang.

The Manchu-led Qing dynasty circa 1820. Later Jin area in purple line Manzh uls.jpg
The Manchu-led Qing dynasty circa 1820. Later Jin area in purple line

After conquering the Ming, the Qing often identified their state as "China" (中國, Zhongguo; "Middle Kingdom"), and referred to it as Dulimbai Gurun ("Middle Kingdom") in Manchu. [48] In the Qing shilu the lands of the Qing state (including Manchuria and present-day Xinjiang, Mongolia, and Tibet) are thus identified as "the Middle Kingdom" in both the Chinese and Manchu languages in roughly two-thirds of the cases, while the term refers to the traditional Chinese provinces populated by the Han in roughly one third of the cases. It was also common to use "China" (Zhongguo, Dulimbai gurun) to refer to the Qing in official documents, international treaties, and foreign affairs. In diplomatic documents, the term "Chinese language" (Dulimbai gurun i bithe) referred to the Chinese, Manchu, and Mongol languages, and the term "Chinese people" (中國人 Zhongguo ren; Manchu: Dulimbai gurun i niyalma) referred to all Han, Manchus, and Mongol subjects of the Qing. The Qing explicitly stated that the lands in Manchuria belonged to "China" (Zhongguo, Dulimbai gurun) in Qing edicts and in the 1689 Treaty of Nerchinsk. [49]

Despite migration restrictions, Qing rule saw massively increasing numbers of Han Chinese both illegally and legally streaming into Manchuria and settling down to cultivate land – Manchu landlords desired Han Chinese peasants to rent their land and to grow grain; most Han Chinese migrants were not evicted as they crossed the Great Wall and Willow Palisade. During the eighteenth century Han Chinese farmed 500,000 hectares of privately owned land in Manchuria and 203,583 hectares of lands which were part of courier stations, noble estates, and Banner lands; in garrisons and towns in Manchuria Han Chinese made up 80% of the population. [50]

The Qing resettled Han Chinese farmers from north China to the area along the Liao River in order to restore the land to cultivation. [51] Han Chinese squatters reclaimed wasteland, and other Han rented land from Manchu landlords. [52]

By the 18th century, despite officially prohibiting Han Chinese settlement on Manchu and Mongol lands, the Qing decided to settle Han refugees from northern China – who were suffering from famine, floods, and drought – into Manchuria and Inner Mongolia, so that Han Chinese farmed 500,000 hectares in Manchuria and tens of thousands of hectares in Inner Mongolia by the 1780s. [53] The Qianlong Emperor (r. 1735–1796) allowed Han Chinese peasants suffering from drought to move into Manchuria despite his having issued edicts in favor of banning them from 1740 to 1776. [54] Han Chinese then streamed into Manchuria, both illegally and legally, over the Great Wall of China and the Willow Palisade. [55] Chinese tenant farmers rented or even claimed title to land from the "imperial estates" and Manchu Bannerlands in the area. [56] Besides moving into the Liao area in southern Manchuria, Han Chinese settled the path linking Jinzhou, Fengtian, Tieling, Changchun, Hulun, and Ningguta during the Qianlong Emperor's reign, and Han Chinese had become the majority in urban areas of Manchuria by 1800. [57] To increase the Imperial Treasury's revenue, the Qing sold formerly Manchu-only lands along the Sungari to Han Chinese at the beginning of the Daoguang Emperor's 1820–1850 reign, and Han Chinese filled up most of Manchuria's towns by the 1840s, according to Abbé Huc. [58]

Map showing the original border (in pink) between Manchuria and Russia according to the Treaty of Nerchinsk 1689, and subsequent losses of territory to Russia in the treaties of Aigun 1858 (beige) and Peking 1860 (red) MANCHURIA-U.S.S.R BOUNDARY Ct002999.jpg
Map showing the original border (in pink) between Manchuria and Russia according to the Treaty of Nerchinsk 1689, and subsequent losses of territory to Russia in the treaties of Aigun 1858 (beige) and Peking 1860 (red)
Harbin's Kitayskaya Street (Russian for "Chinese Street"), now Zhongyang Street (Chinese for "Central Street"), before 1945 Kitaiskaia Street in Harbin.JPG
Harbin's Kitayskaya Street (Russian for "Chinese Street"), now Zhongyang Street (Chinese for "Central Street"), before 1945

The Russian conquest of Siberia was met with indigenous resistance to colonization, but Russian Cossacks crushed the natives. The conquest of Siberia and Manchuria also resulted in the spread of infectious diseases. Historian John F. Richards wrote: "... New diseases weakened and demoralized the indigenous peoples of Siberia. The worst of these was smallpox "because of its swift spread, the high death rates, and the permanent disfigurement of survivors." ... In the 1690s, smallpox epidemics reduced Yukagir numbers by an estimated 44 percent." [59] At the behest of people like Vasilii Poyarkov in 1645 and Yerofei Khabarov in 1650, Russian Cossacks killed some peoples like the Daur people of Inner Mongolia and Xinjiang to the extent that some authors speak of genocide. [60] The Daurs initially deserted their villages since they had heard about the cruelty of the Russians the first time Khabarov came. [61] The second time he came, the Daurs decided to do battle against the Russians instead, but were slaughtered by Russian guns. [62] The Russians came to be known as "red-beards". [63] The Amur natives called Russian Cossacks luocha (羅剎), after demons in Buddhist mythology, because of their cruelty towards the Amur tribespeople, who were subjects of the Qing. [64] The Qing viewed Russian proselytization of Eastern Orthodox Christianity to the indigenous peoples along the Amur River as a threat. [65]

In 1858 Russian diplomacy forced a weakening Qing dynasty to cede Manchuria north of the Amur to Russia under the Treaty of Aigun. In 1860, with the Treaty of Peking, the Russians managed to obtain a further large slice of Manchuria, east of the Ussuri River. As a result, Manchuria became divided into a Russian half (known as "Outer Manchuria", and a remaining Chinese half (known as "Inner Manchuria"). In modern literature, "Manchuria" usually refers to Inner (Chinese) Manchuria.[ citation needed ] As a result of the Treaties of Aigun and Peking, Qing China lost access to the Sea of Japan.

History after 1860

1940 Manchukuo visa issued at Hamburg 1940 Manchurian visa.jpg
1940 Manchukuo visa issued at Hamburg

Inner Manchuria also came under strong Russian influence with the building of the Chinese Eastern Railway through Harbin to Vladivostok. In the Chuang Guandong movement, many Han farmers, mostly from the Shandong peninsula moved there. By 1921, Harbin, northern Manchuria's largest city, had a population of 300,000, including 100,000 Russians. [66] Japan replaced Russian influence in the southern half of Inner Manchuria as a result of the Russo-Japanese War in 1904–1905. Most of the southern branch of the Chinese Eastern Railway was transferred from Russia to Japan, and became the South Manchurian Railway. Japanese influence extended into Outer Manchuria in the wake of the Russian Revolution of 1917, but Outer Manchuria had reverted to Soviet control by 1925. Manchuria was an important region due to its rich natural resources including coal, fertile soil, and various minerals. For pre–World War II Japan, Manchuria was an essential source of raw materials. Without occupying Manchuria, the Japanese probably could not have carried out their plan for conquest over Southeast Asia or taken the risk of attacking the United States and the British Empire in 1941. [67]

There was a major epidemic known as the Manchurian plague in 1910–1911, likely caused by the inexperienced hunting of marmots, many of whom are diseased. The cheap railway transport and the harsh winters, where the hunters sheltered in close confinement, helped to propagate the disease. [68] The response required close coordination between the Chinese, Russian and Japanese authorities and international disease experts held an 'International Plague Conference' in the northern city of Shenyang after the disease was under control to learn the lessons. [69]

It was reported that among Banner people, both Manchu and Chinese (Hanjun) in Aihun, Heilongjiang in the 1920s, would seldom marry with Han civilians, but they (Manchu and Chinese Bannermen) would mostly intermarry with each other. [70] Owen Lattimore reported that during his January 1930 visit to Manchuria, he studied a community in Jilin (Kirin), where both Manchu and Chinese Bannermen were settled at a town called Wulakai, and eventually the Chinese Bannermen there could not be differentiated from Manchus since they were effectively Manchufied (assimilated). The Han civilian population was in the process of absorbing and mixing with them when Lattimore wrote his article. [71]

Map of Manchukuo (1933-1945) Manchukuo map.png
Map of Manchukuo (1933–1945)

Around the time of World War I, Zhang Zuolin established himself as a powerful warlord with influence over most of Manchuria. During his rule, the Manchurian economy grew tremendously, backed by the immigration of Chinese from other parts of China. The Japanese assassinated him on 2 June 1928, in what is known as the Huanggutun Incident. [72] Following the Mukden Incident in 1931 and the subsequent Japanese invasion of Manchuria, the Japanese declared Inner Manchuria an "independent state", and appointed the deposed Qing emperor Puyi as puppet emperor of Manchukuo. Under Japanese control, Manchuria was brutally run, with a systematic campaign of terror and intimidation against the local populations including arrests, organised riots and other forms of subjugation. [73] Manchukuo was used by Japan as a base to invade the rest of China. At that time, hundreds of thousands of Japanese settlers arrived in Manchuria.

After the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan in 1945, the Soviet Union invaded from Soviet Outer Manchuria as part of its declaration of war against Japan. Soon afterwards, the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang) started fighting for control over Manchuria. The communists won in the Liaoshen Campaign and took complete control over Manchuria. With the encouragement of the Soviet Union, Manchuria was then used as a staging ground during the Chinese Civil War for the Chinese Communist Party, which emerged victorious in 1949. Ambiguities in the treaties that ceded Outer Manchuria to Russia led to disputes over the political status of several islands. The Kuomintang government in Taiwan (Formosa) complained to the United Nations, which passed resolution 505 on February 1, 1952, denouncing Soviet actions over the violations of the 1945 Sino-Soviet Treaty of Friendship and Alliance.

As part of the Sino-Soviet split, this ambiguity led to armed conflict in 1969, called the Sino-Soviet border conflict, resulting in an agreement. In 2004, Russia agreed to transfer Yinlong Island and one half of Heixiazi Island to China, ending an enduring border dispute.

See also

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  56. For example: Bisher, Jamie (2006) [2005]. White Terror: Cossack Warlords of the Trans-Siberian. London: Routledge. p. 6. ISBN   9781135765958 . Retrieved 24 September 2020. Armed resistance against the Russian conquest begat slaughters by both invaders and the original inhabitants, but the worst cases led to genocide of indigenous groups such as the Dauri people on the Amur River, who were hunted down and butchered during campaigns by Vasilii Poyarkov about 1645 and Yerofei Khabarov in 1650.
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  61. Kim 2012/2013, p. 169.
  62. Memories of Dr. Wu Lien-teh, plague fighter . Yu-lin Wu (1995). World Scientific. p.68. ISBN   981-02-2287-4
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  64. "Manchurian plague, 1910–11",, Iain Meiklejohn.
  65. In 1911, another epidemic swept through China. That time, the world came together. CNN, April 19, 2020
  66. Rhoads 2011, p. 263.
  67. Lattimore 1933, p. 272.
  68. Edward Behr, ibid, p. 168
  69. Edward Behr, ibid, p. 202


Coordinates: 43°N125°E / 43°N 125°E / 43; 125