|Viceroy of Huguang|
|Preceded by||Sun Yuting|
|Viceroy of Liangguang|
22 October 1817 –22 June 1826
|Preceded by||Jiang Youxian|
|Succeeded by||Li Hongbin|
|Viceroy of Yun-Gui|
|Preceded by||Zhao Shenzhen|
|Born||February 21, 1764|
Yizheng, Qing Dynasty
|Died||November 27, 1849 (aged 85)|
Yangzhou, Qing Dynasty
|Occupation||Historian, politician, writer|
Ruan Yuan (Chinese :阮元; 1764–1849) was a Chinese historian, politician, and writer of the Qing Dynasty who was the most prominent Chinese scholar during the first half of the 19th century. He won the jinshi degree in the imperial examinations in 1789 and was subsequently appointed to the Hanlin Academy. He was known for his work Biographies of Astronomers and Mathematicians and for his editing the Shisan Jing Zhushu (Commentaries and Notes on the Thirteen Classics) for the Qing emperor.
Ruan Yuan was a successful official as well as a scholar. He was the Viceroy of Liangguang, the most important imperial official in Canton (Guangzhou), during the critical years 1817–1826, just before the First Opium War with Britain. It was a crucial time when Chinese trade with the outside world was allowed only through the Canton System, with all foreigners confined to Canton, the capital of Guangdong Province. During his tenure in Canton, Ruan is estimated to have earned more than 195,000 taels of silver.
He was widely recognized as an official, scholar, and patron of learning both by his contemporaries and by modern scholars. He was also praised as an honest official and an exemplary man of the ‘Confucian persuasion’. His name is mentioned in almost all works on Qing history or Chinese classics because of the wide range of his research and publications. A number of these publications are still reprinted. Ruan Yuan was a follower of the Han Learning tradition and as such, with the encouragement of Liu Fenglu, he edited and organized publication of the compendium of the imperial achievements in kaozheng scholarship, the Huang Qing Jingjie (zh:皇清经解) published in 1829.
Kong Luhua (relative of the Duke Yansheng) was the second wife of Ruan Yuan.
The Qing dynasty or the Qing Empire, officially the Great Qing, was the last dynasty in the imperial history of China. It was established in 1636, and ruled China from 1644 to 1912, with a brief restoration in 1917. It was preceded by the Ming dynasty and succeeded by the Republic of China. The multiethnic Qing empire lasted for almost three centuries and assembled the territorial base for modern China. It was the largest Chinese dynasty and in 1790 the fourth largest empire in world history in terms of territory. With a population of 432 million in 1912, it was the world's most populous country.
The Opium Wars were two wars waged between the Qing dynasty and Western powers in the mid-19th century. The First Opium War, fought in 1839–1842 between Qing China and Great Britain, was triggered by the dynasty's campaign against the British merchants who sold opium to Chinese merchants. The Second Opium War was fought between the Qing and Britain and France, 1856–1860. In each war, the European force's modern military technology led to easy victory over the Qing forces, with the consequence that the government was compelled to grant favorable tariffs, trade concessions, and territory to the Europeans.
The Yuelu Academy is on the east side of Yuelu Mountain in Changsha, Hunan province, on the west bank of the Xiang River. As one of the four most prestigious academies over the last 1000 years in China, Yuelu Academy has been a famous institution of higher learning as well as a centre of academic activities and cultures since it was formally set up during the Northern Song dynasty. The academy was converted into Hunan Institute of Higher Learning in 1903. It was later renamed Hunan Normal College, Hunan Public Polytechnic School, and finally Hunan University in 1926. Yuelu Academy was once the center for the pursuit of Chinese ancient learning and idealism in China's feudalist era.
Sinocentrism refers to the ideology that China is the cultural, political or economic center of the world.
The Canton System served as a means for Qing China to control trade with the West within its own country by focusing all trade on the southern port of Canton. The protectionist policy arose in 1757 as a response to a perceived political and commercial threat from abroad on the part of successive Chinese emperors.
Betty Wei is a historian and a writer.
Empress Xiaoherui, of the Manchu Bordered Yellow Banner Niohuru clan, was a posthumous name bestowed to the wife and second empress consort of Yongyan, the Jiaqing Emperor. She was Empress consort of Qing from 1801 until her husband's death in 1820, after which she was honoured as Empress Dowager Gongci during the reign of her step-son, Mianning, the Daoguang Emperor. She was the longest-serving empress consort in Qing history.
Wei Yuan, born Wei Yuanda (魏遠達), courtesy names Moshen (默深) and Hanshi (漢士), was a Chinese scholar from Shaoyang, Hunan. He moved to Yangzhou in 1831, where he remained for the rest of his life. Wei obtained the provincial degree (juren) in the Imperial examinations and subsequently worked in the secretariat of several prominent statesmen, such as Lin Zexu. Wei was deeply concerned with the crisis facing China in the early 19th century; while he remained loyal to the Qing Dynasty, he also sketched a number of proposals for the improvement of the administration of the empire.
Empress Xiaoshencheng, of the Manchu Bordered Yellow Banner Tunggiya clan, was a posthumous name bestowed to the wife and first empress consort of Mianning, the Daoguang Emperor. She was Empress consort of Qing from 1822 until her death in 1833.
The Duke of Yansheng, literally "Honorable Overflowing with Sagacity", sometimes translated as Holy Duke of Yen, was a Chinese title of nobility. It was originally created as a marquis title in the Western Han dynasty for a direct descendant of Confucius.
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The Cohong, sometimes spelled kehang or gonghang, a guild of Chinese merchants or hongs, operated the import-export monopoly in Canton during the Qing dynasty (1644–1911). During the century prior to the First Opium War of 1839-1842, trade relations between China and Europe took place exclusively via the Cohong - a system formalised by an imperial edict of the Qianlong Emperor in 1760. The Chinese merchants who made up the Cohong were referred to as hangshang (行商) and their foreign counterparts as yanghang.
Ruan is a Chinese surname.
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The history of opium in China began with the use of opium for medicinal purposes during the 7th century. In the 17th century the practice of mixing opium with tobacco for smoking spread from Southeast Asia, creating a far greater demand.
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Zhu Yun was a preeminent Qing scholar and official who had profound influence on the Imperial Library in Four Treasures project and academia of the time.
Jiang Youxian (蔣攸銛)
| Governor-general of Liangguang |
22 October 1817 –22 June 1826
Li Hongbin (李鴻賓)