Zhang Zhidong

Last updated
Zhang Zhidong
张之洞
Zhang Zhi Dong Zhao Fu Zhao .jpg
Zhang in official robes
Grand Councillor
In office
1907–1909
Grand Secretary of the Tiren Hall
In office
1907–1909
Assistant Grand Secretary
In office
1907–1907
Viceroy of Huguang
In office
1904–1907
Preceded by Duanfang (acting)
Succeeded by Zhao Erxun
In office
1898–1902
Preceded by Tang Jixun (acting)
Succeeded by Duanfang (acting)
In office
1896–1898
Preceded byTang Jixun (acting)
Succeeded byTang Jixun (acting)
Viceroy of Liangjiang
In office
1902 1903
(acting)
Preceded by Liu Kunyi
Succeeded by Wei Guangtao
In office
1894–1896
Preceded byLiu Kunyi (acting)
Succeeded byLiu Kunyi (acting)
Viceroy of Liangguang
In office
1884–1889
Preceded by Zhang Shusheng
Succeeded by Li Hanzhang
Personal details
Born(1837-09-04)4 September 1837
Xingyi Prefecture, Guizhou Province, Qing Empire
DiedOctober 5, 1909(1909-10-05) (aged 72)
Beijing, Qing Empire
Children Zhang Yanqing
Zhang Renli
OccupationOfficial
Zhang Zhidong
Traditional Chinese 張之洞
Simplified Chinese 张之洞

Zhang Zhidong (Chinese :张之洞) (4 September 1837 5 October 1909) was a Chinese official who lived during the late Qing dynasty. Along with Zeng Guofan, Li Hongzhang and Zuo Zongtang, Zhang Zhidong was one of the four most famous officials of the late Qing dynasty. Known for advocating controlled reform and modernization of Chinese troops, he served as the Governor of Shanxi Province and Viceroy of Huguang, Liangguang and Liangjiang, and also as a member of the Grand Council. He took a leading role in the abolition of the Imperial examination system in 1905. The Red Guards destroyed his tomb in 1966 during the Cultural Revolution. His remains were rediscovered in 2007 and reburied with honors.

Contents

Other names

Zhang Zhidong was also known by other names. An older Wade–Giles form was Chang Chih-tung. His courtesy name was Xiaoda (孝達; 孝达; Xiàodá) or Xiangtao (香濤; 香涛; Xiāngtāo). His pseudonyms were Xiangyan (香岩; Xiāngyán), Hugong (壺公; 壶公; Húgōng), Wujing Jushi (無競居士; 无竞居士; Wújìng Jūshì) and Baobing (抱冰; Bàobīng). The posthumous name given to him by the Qing government was Wenxiang (文襄; Wénxiāng).

Early life

Zhang was born in Xingyi Prefecture (興義府), Guizhou Province, but his ancestral roots were in Nanpi, Tianjin, Zhili Province. He was the cousin of Zhang Zhiwan. In 1852, he sat for the provincial-level imperial examination in Shuntian Prefecture (present-day Beijing) and achieved the top position as jieyuan (解元) in the juren class. In 1863, he sat for the palace-level examination and emerged as tanhua (探花), the third highest-ranked candidate of the jinshi class. He was then admitted to the Hanlin Academy as a bianxiu (編修; editor) before taking up other positions, including jiaoxi (教習), shidu (侍讀) and shijiang (侍講). In 1882, he was transferred as the xunfu (provincial governor) of Shanxi Province. [1] Empress Dowager Cixi promoted him to Viceroy of Huguang in August 1889.

During the Dungan Revolt of 1862–1877, the Russian Empire occupied the Ili region in Xinjiang. After Qing imperial forces successfully crushed the Dungan Revolt, they demanded that the Russians withdraw from Ili, which led to the Ili Crisis.

After the incompetent negotiator Chonghou, who was bribed by the Russians, without permission from the Qing government, signed a treaty granting Russia extraterritorial rights, consulates, control over trade, and an indemnity, a massive uproar by the Chinese literati ensued, some of them calling for Chonghou's death. Zhang demanded for Chonghou's execution and urged the Qing government to stand up to Russia and declare the treaty invalid. He said, "The Russians must be considered extremely covetous and truculent in making the demands and Chonghou extremely stupid and absurd in accepting them... If we insist on changing the treaty, there may not be trouble; if we do not, we are unworthy to be called a state." [2] The Chinese literati demanded the Qing government mobilise their armed forces against the Russians. The Qing government allocated important posts to officers from the Xiang Army, while British military officer Charles George Gordon advised the Chinese. [3]

First Sino-Japanese War

Zhang became involved in the First Sino-Japanese War, although not on the frontline. He initially advocated foreign aid from European forces near Tianjin in fighting the Japanese. In October 1894, he telegraphed Li Hongzhang, the Viceroy of Zhili, proposing the purchase of naval equipment, and loans from foreign banks. He further advocated this, and in addition the purchase of arms, alliance with European powers, and the "clear division of rewards and punishments" for troops, once the Japanese crossed the Yalu River into China in late October, threatening the northeastern provinces. In early 1895, the Japanese had begun an assault on Shandong, and Zhang telegraphed the governor Li Bingheng in an emergency that suggested fast civil recruitments, the building of strong forts, and the use of landmines, to prevent further Japanese advance. He had also sent arms and munitions to aid the campaign.

Taiwan

Zhang held on a strong opinion on the issue of ceding Taiwan to the Japanese, per the 1895 Treaty of Shimonoseki that ended the First Sino-Japanese War. In late February 1895, he made his stance clear to the Qing government, and even offered ideas on how to prevent the loss of Taiwan. He suggested that they take huge loans from the British, who would in turn send their navy to defend Taiwan from the Japanese. In addition, he proposed giving mining rights to the British on Taiwan for about 10 to 20 years. In May 1895, the Qing government ordered all civil and military officials to evacuate Taiwan. Zhang also refused to provide aid to the remaining Qing forces in Taiwan, especially after the fall of Keelung and with Taipei as the sole remaining Qing stronghold in Taiwan. On 19 October 1895, the last of the Qing forces in Taiwan, led by Liu Yongfu, withdrew to Xiamen.

Modernisation of China's military

After the defeat of Sino-French War in 1885, Zhang was said to reflect on the events of the war and expressed his desire to establish a modern military to match up to that of the Western forces in a memorial to the throne. Upon Zhang's reflection, the weaknesses of traditional Chinese troops were identified in comparison with the Western troops, which had better firepower, mobility, and individual combat capability. When Zhang created the Guangdong Military Academy, also known as Guangdong Naval and Military Officers Academy, and the Guangdong Victorious Army (廣勝軍), he set physical admission standards high and hired German officers as instructors to address the weaknesses of the Chinese troops. [1] Specifically, in modernizing the troops in Guangdong, Zhang made newly trained troops to be "the nucleus" of newer troops, passing the training unit to unit. In addition, Zhang synthesized Chinese traditional learning and Western military learning in Guangdong Military Academy under his guiding principle of ti-yong(體用), which stresses Chinese traditional values and deems Western imports to be for practical uses only. [1] He also established the Hubei Military Academy (湖北學堂) in 1896, where he employed instructors from the Guangdong Academy. The majority of the staff were Chinese. He also hired some German officers as instructors. [4]

While serving as the governor of Nanjing in 1894, Zhang invited a German training regiment of 12 officers and 24 warrant officers to train the local garrison into a modern military force. In 1896, acting under an imperial decree, Zhang moved to Wuchang to serve as the Viceroy of Huguang, an area comprising Hubei and Hunan provinces. Zhang drew on his experience in Nanjing to modernise the military forces under his command in Huguang. [5]

In Wuchang, Zhang effectively trained and equipped modern units of sappers, engineers, cavalry, police, artillery and infantry. Of the 60,000 men under his command, 20,000 men were directly trained by foreign officers, and a military academy was established in Wuchang in order to train future generations of soldiers. Zhang armed the troops with German Mauser rifles and other modern equipment. Foreign observers reported that, when their training was complete, the troops stationed in the Wuchang garrison were the equal of contemporary European forces. [6]

During the Boxer Rebellion, Zhang, along with some other regional governors who commanded substantial modernised armies, refused to participate in the central government's declaration of war against the Eight-Nation Alliance. Zhang assured the foreigners during negotiations that he would do nothing to help the central government. [7] [8] He told this to Everard Fraser. [9] This clique was known as The Mutual Protection of Southeast China. [10]

Zhang's troops later became involved in politics. In 1911, the Wuchang garrison led the Wuchang Uprising, a coup against the local government that catalysed the nationwide Xinhai Revolution. The Xinhai Revolution led to the collapse of the Qing dynasty and its replacement by the Republic of China. [11]

Involvement in Reform

Zhang Zhidong clique in the late Qing court was extremely influential with strong reform tendency. Yang Rui, one of the Six Martyrs, was Zhang's political informant in Beijing who carried out Zhang's instructions during Hundred Days' Reform of 1898. Chen Baozhen is another subordinate who shared Zhang's academic visions, and Chen coauthored a memorial to the court with Zhang to suggest the reform of Civil Service Exam. Zhang had a strong grasp of the progress of reforms as he had more temporary confidants and informants from other regions. [12]

In the third month of 1898, Zhang published his work Exhortation to Study (勸學篇), which addresses the questions of educational reform. [13] He insisted on a method of relatively conservative reform, summarized in his phrase "Chinese Learning as Substance, Western Learning for Application" (中學為體,西學為用). In Exhortation to Study (勸學篇), Zhang brought up reform methodology of implementing new schools at the expense of Buddhist and Taoist monasteries. While doing so, reservation of 30 percent of the monasteries and introduction of Conducianization were also part of the methodology to help the two religions subsist. Zhang Zhidong's reform on education is said not to eliminate religious institutions, but to better allocate resources. [13]

Kang Youwei, another late Qing reformist, later expressed similar mode of thinking - he also advocated aiding modern education at the cost of temples. However, Kang Youwei is more radical as he envisions destruction of religions in comparison to Zhang's conservative approach. Zhang was supportive of Kang's vision of scholarly learning, but rejects Kang's proposal of Confucian religion. [14] Historians commonly regard Zhang Zhidong's reform as an attempt reconcile modernity and China's existing social fabric. [13]

He succeeded Liu Kunyi as Viceroy of Liangjiang in 1901, and moved to Nanjing, where he laid the foundations for the modern University of Nanjing. Zhang Zhidong, along with Liu Kunyi and Wei Guangtao, were the founders of Sanjiang Normal College. Zhang espoused Japanese educational system and principles, and announced his plan to hire 12 Japanese teachers(教习) in a communication with Moriyoshi Nagaoka (長岡護美) before the establishment of the college. [15]

Later life

In 1900, he advocated the suppression of the Boxer Rebellion. When the Eight-Nation Alliance entered Beijing, Zhang, along with Li Hongzhang and others, participated in The Mutual Protection of Southeast China. He quelled local revolts and defeated the rebel army of Tang Caichang. He was appointed the Minister of Military Affairs in 1906, and worked in Beijing for the central government.

He was aware that a change in Chinese affairs was necessary, and at the same time realized that the Chinese officials and people clung with unyielding tenacity to their ancient ideas and institutions and penned his ideas in a book: China's only hope: An Appeal. [16] The book was distributed to the Grand Council of State, Viceroys, Governors and Literary Examiners of China.

Zhang Zhidong's sons were Zhang Yanqing and Zhang Renli.

Zhang died of illness in 1909 in Beijing.

Related Research Articles

Yuan Shikai Chinese military and government official (1859-1916)

Yuan Shikai was a Chinese military and government official who rose to power during the late Qing dynasty, becoming the Emperor of the Empire of China (1915–1916). He tried to save the dynasty with a number of modernization projects including bureaucratic, fiscal, judicial, educational, and other reforms, despite playing a key part in the failure of the Hundred Days' Reform. He established the first modern army and a more efficient provincial government in North China in the last years of the Qing dynasty before the abdication of the Xuantong Emperor, the last monarch of the Qing dynasty, in 1912. Through negotiation, he became the first President of the Republic of China in 1912. This army and bureaucratic control were the foundation of his autocratic rule. He was frustrated in a short-lived attempt to restore hereditary monarchy in China, with himself as the Hongxian Emperor. His death shortly after his abdication led to the fragmentation of the Chinese political system and the end of the Beiyang government as China's central authority.

Wuchang Uprising

The Wuchang Uprising was an armed rebellion against the ruling Qing dynasty that took place in Wuchang, Hubei, China on 10 October 1911, which was the beginning of the Xinhai Revolution that successfully overthrew China's last imperial dynasty. It was led by elements of the New Army, influenced by revolutionary ideas from Tongmenghui. The uprising and the eventual revolution directly led to the downfall of the Qing dynasty with almost three centuries of imperial rule, and the establishment of the Republic of China (ROC), which commemorates the anniversary of the uprising's starting date of 10 October as the National Day of the Republic of China.

Li Hongzhang

Li Hongzhang, Marquess Suyi was a Chinese politician, general and diplomat of the late Qing dynasty. He quelled several major rebellions and served in important positions in the Qing imperial court, including the Viceroy of Zhili, Huguang and Liangguang.

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 Qing dynasty. On January 1, 1912, this revolution established the Republic of China. 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.

The Self-Strengthening Movement, also known as the Westernization or Western Affairs Movement, was a period of institutional reforms initiated in China during the late Qing dynasty following the military disasters of the Opium Wars.

Huang Xing Chinese revolutionary

Huang Xing or Huang Hsing was a Chinese revolutionary leader and politician, and the first commander-in-chief of the Republic of China. As one of the founders of the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Republic of China, his position was second only to Sun Yat-sen. Together they were known as Sun-Huang during the Xinhai Revolution. He was also known as the "Eight Fingered General" because of wounds sustained during war. His tomb is on Mount Yuelu, in Changsha, Hunan, China.

Huguang

Huguang was a province of China during the Yuan and Ming dynasties. It was founded by the Yuan dynasty in 1274. During the Yuan dynasty it included the areas of modern Hubei south of the Yangtze river, Hunan, Guizhou, and Guangxi. During the Ming dynasty it came to include just the modern provinces of Hubei and Hunan, in the process adding areas north of the Yangtze. It was partitioned in 1644 by the newly established Qing dynasty, becoming the provinces of Hubei and Hunan, which were administered by the viceroy of Lianghu.

Liu Mingchuan

Liu Mingchuan (1836–1896), courtesy name Xingsan, was a Chinese official who lived in the late Qing dynasty. He was born in Hefei, Anhui. Liu became involved in the suppression of the Taiping Rebellion at an early age, and worked closely with Zeng Guofan and Li Hongzhang as he emerged as an important Huai Army officer. In the aftermath of the Sino-French War, succeeding Ding Richang he was appointed the first governor of the newly established Taiwan Province. Today he is remembered for his efforts in modernizing Taiwan during his tenure as governor, and several institutions have been given his name, including Ming Chuan University in Taipei.

Cen Chunxuan

Cen Chunxuan, courtesy name Yunjie, was a Zhuang Chinese politician who lived in the late Qing dynasty and Republic of China.

Baoding Military Academy

Baoding Military Academy or Paoting Military Academy was a military academy based in Baoding, Republican China, in the first two decades of the 20th century. For a time, it was the most important military academy in China, and its cadets played prominent roles in the political and military history of the Republic of China. The Baoding Military Academy closed in 1923, but served as a model for the Whampoa Military Academy, which was founded in Guangzhou in 1924. During the Second Sino-Japanese War, half of 300 divisions in China's armed forces were commanded by Whampoa graduates and one-third were Baoding cadets.

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.

Xiang Army

The Xiang Army or Hunan Army was a standing army organized by Zeng Guofan from existing regional and village militia forces called tuanlian to contain the Taiping Rebellion in Qing China. The name is taken from the Hunan region where the Army was raised. The Army was financed through local nobles and gentry, as opposed to through the centralized Manchu-led Qing dynasty. The army was mostly disbanded by Zeng after the re-capture of the Taiping capital at Nanking.

The Huai Army, named for the Huai River, was a military force allied with the Qing dynasty raised to contain the Taiping Rebellion in 1862. It was also called the Anhui Army because it was based in Anhui province. It helped to restore the stability of the Qing dynasty. Unlike the traditional Green Standard Army or Eight Banners forces of the Qing, the Huai Army was largely a militia army, based on personal rather than institutional loyalties. It was armed with a mixture of traditional and modern weapons. Li Hongzhang, a commander in the Xiang Army, created the Huai Army in October 1861. It succeeded Zeng Guofan’s Xiang Army. The Huai Army itself was succeeded by the New Army and the Beiyang Army, which were created in the late 19th century.

The Chu Army was a standing regional army organized by Zuo Zongtang (左宗棠). The name is taken from the Hunan region where the Army was raised. The Army was financed through local nobles and gentry, as opposed to the central government.

Railway Protection Movement

The Railway Protection Movement, also known as the "Railway Rights Protection Movement", was a political protest movement that erupted in 1911 in late Qing China against the Qing government's plan to nationalize local railway development projects and transfer control to foreign banks. The movement, centered in Sichuan province, expressed mass discontent with Qing rule, galvanized anti-Qing groups and contributed to the outbreak of the Xinhai Revolution. The mobilization of imperial troops from neighboring Hubei Province to suppress the Railway Protection Movement created the opportunity for revolutionaries in Wuhan to launch the Wuchang Uprising, which triggered the revolution that overthrew the Qing dynasty and established the Republic of China.

Mutual Protection of Southeast China

The Mutual Protection of Southeast China was an agreement made in the summer of 1900 during the Boxer Rebellion by governors of the provinces in southern, eastern and central China when the Eight Power Expedition invaded North China. The governors, including Li Hongzhang, Xu Yingkui, Liu Kunyi, Zhang Zhidong and Yuan Shikai, refused to carry out the imperial decree promulgated by the Qing dynasty to declare war on 11 foreign nations, with the aim of preserving peace in their own provinces.

Late Qing reforms, or New Policies, or New Administration of the late Qing dynasty (1901–1912), 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. The reforms started in 1901 and since they were implemented with the backing of the Empress Dowager Cixi, they are also called Cixi's New Policies.

Huang Zongxian, courtesy name Zuoqing, was a Qing dynasty entrepreneur who in 1881 founded Chang-kee Silk Filature, the first Chinese-owned modern silk filature, in Shanghai. In 1894, he partnered with the official Zhang Zhidong to found a state-sponsored silk filature in Wuchang, which allowed him to obtain official titles.

Xu Yingkui

First-rank court official Xu Yingkui, courtesy names Jun'an (筠庵) and Changde (昌德), was a 19th-century Qing dynasty politician who served as Viceroy of Min-Zhe, Governor of Fuzhou and General of Fujian from 1898 to 1903. He was one of the two Chinese representatives who signed the Convention for the Extension of Hong Kong Territory, the other being Li Hongzhang. During Kang Youwei's Hundred Days' Reform, Xu opposed the reform and personally filed a complaint against Kang's conduct and political orientations.

Events from the year 1662 in China.

References

Citations

  1. 1 2 3 Chang, Adam. "Reappraising Zhang Zhidong: Forgotten Continuities During China's Self-strengthening, 1884-1901". Journal of Chinese Military History. 6: 161 via Brill.
  2. Fairbank, John King; Liu, Kwang-Ching; Twitchett, Denis Crispin, eds. (1980). Late Ch'ing, 1800-1911. Volume 11, Part 2 of The Cambridge History of China Series (illustrated ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 94. ISBN   0-521-22029-7.
  3. Fairbank, John King; Liu, Kwang-Ching; Twitchett, Denis Crispin, eds. (1980). Late Ch'ing, 1800-1911. Volume 11, Part 2 of The Cambridge History of China Series (illustrated ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 94. ISBN   0-521-22029-7.
  4. Fairbank, John King; Liu, Kwang-Ching; Twitchett, Denis Crispin, eds. (1980). Late Ch'ing, 1800-1911. Volume 11, Part 2 of The Cambridge History of China Series (illustrated ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 268. ISBN   0-521-22029-7.
  5. Bonavia 30-31
  6. Bonavia 31-33
  7. Powell, Ralph L. (8 December 2015). Rise of the Chinese Military Power. Princeton University Press. p. 121. ISBN   978-1-4008-7884-0.
  8. Rhoads, Edward J. M. (1 December 2011). Manchus and Han: Ethnic Relations and Political Power in Late Qing and Early Republican China, 1861–1928. University of Washington Press. pp. 74–75. ISBN   978-0-295-80412-5.
  9. Rhoads, Edward J. M. (2000). Manchus and Han: Ethnic Relations and Political Power in Late Qing and Early Republican China, 1861–1928. University of Washington Press. p. 74. ISBN   978-0-295-98040-9.
  10. Luo, Zhitian (30 January 2015). Inheritance within Rupture: Culture and Scholarship in Early Twentieth Century China. BRILL. p. 19. ISBN   978-90-04-28766-2.
  11. Bonavia 33
  12. Zhang, Hairong. "Another perspective on the 1898 reform: interpreting the Zhang Zhidong Archives". Journal of Modern Chinese History. 8 (2): 272–274.
  13. 1 2 3 Goossaert, Vincent. "1898: The Beginning of the End for Chinese Religion ?". Journal of Asian Studies. Cambridge University Press. 65 (2): 307–336.
  14. Chen, Hon Fai (2015). Civilizing the Chinese, Competing with the West: Study Societies in Late Qing China. The Chinese University Press. pp. 64–65.
  15. "校史沿革". Nanjing University Website.
  16. https://www.amazon.com/Chinas-Only-Appeal-Zhidong-Zhang/dp/1230341544

Sources

  • Ayers, William (1971). Chang Chih-tung and educational reform in China. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  • Bays, Daniel H. (1978). China Enters the Twentieth Century: Chang Chih-Tung and the Issues of a New Age, 1895-1909. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. ISBN   0472081055.
  • Bonavia, David (1995). China's Warlords. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN   0-19-586179-5.
  • Teng, Ssu-yu; Fairbank, John K. (1979) [1954]. China's Response to the West: A Documentary Survey, 1839-1923. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  • Chang, Adam (2017). "Reappraising Zhang Zhidong: Fogotten Continuities During Chona's Self-strengthening, 1884-1901". Journal of Chinese Military History. 6 via Brill.