China as a Sea Power, 1127-1368
A Preliminary Survey of the Maritime Expansion and Naval Exploits of the Chinese People During the Southern Song and Yuan Periods
Published by: NUS Press Pte Ltd
Half title, title and copyright page
List of Tables and Figures
In the field of China studies, one of the most important unanswered questions is whether Beijing does or does not have the strategic ambition to acquire a blue water navy, the first step to becoming an acknowledged maritime power. To date, China clearly has historical desires for a great navy, has a viable naval acquisition program...
The three hundred years from the beginning of the twelfth century to the beginning of the fifteenth was a period of fundamental and profound metamorphosis for China. It was a period of transition as tremendous as the change from the chaos and disunity of the Warring States to the absolutism of Qin and Han, as far-reaching as the change...
The editor would like to thank Fern Quon, Professor Lo Jung-pang’s late spouse, and his three children, Sandra, Anthony, and Victoria, for granting permission to publish this book. Dr. Geoff Wade, at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore, first suggested approaching NUS Press to publish this book, and...
When Dr. Lo wrote this book, the use of the Wade-Giles transliteration system predominated, as did the use of complex Chinese characters. To adhere as much as possible to Dr. Lo’s original design, the first time a name, place, object, or event is mentioned...
The name Lo Jung-pang is synonymous with studies of the maritime realm and particularly of China’s naval history. During his lifetime, which extended from the first year of the Chinese republic (1912) until his death from a heart attack in 1981, Professor...
Part 1 FACTORS CONTRIBUTING TO CHINA’S MARITIME EXPAPANSION
1 China’s Rise as a Naval Power
The rugged southeastern coast of China extends from Hangzhou in the north to the border of Indochina in the south. Its shoreline is 3,050 miles, or 57 per cent of the total length of China’s shoreline of 5,360 miles. Islands and headlands, inlets and bays, form...
2 The Shift to the Sea
What were the factors that made China a sea power during the late Song, Yuan, and Early Ming period? Why at this particular time and not at an earlier or later epoch? The basic conditions were perhaps the same as those that made other nations sea powers...
3 The Foundation of Chinese Maritime Power
The shift of the economic, political, and demographic centers of gravity from the hinterland of the Northwest to the coastal regions of the Southeast was but the physical force that moved the Chinese during the Song, Yuan, and early Ming periods to expand out to sea. Coincident and concomitant with the environmental changes...
Part II THE SOUTHERN SONG PERIOD 1127–1279
4 Creation of the Southern Song Navy
On 9 January 1127, Kaifeng, then known as Pien-ching 汴京, the capital of the Song Empire, fell to the assaults of the Jurchen Tartars. Under cover of a heavy snowfall, the attackers dashed across the frozen moat to scale the walls and to drive back the city’s defenders..
5 The War of 1161 and the Expansion of the Navy
The peace between Song and Jin was precarious. The Jurchens were warlike and the wealth and resources of the land below the Yangzi presented a constant temptation to them. Only the prudent policy of their ruler, Hola, restrained them from launching an invasion. But in 1150, Hola was murdered by his cousin Digunai,...
6 Development of Maritime Trade
The collapse of Chinese resistance in North China, which culminated in the fall of the Northern Song capital, Kaifeng, in 1127, was due to economic causes as much as to military and political causes. Indeed, the economic deterioration arguably preceded...
Part III THE YUAN PERIOD 1260–1367
7 The Emergence of the Yuan Navy:The Battle of Yaishan, 1279
In the first 50 years of the Mongols’ spectacular expansion, when their armies rampaged through the North China empire of Jin, annexed Qara Khitai and the Tangut state of Xia, conquered the Khwarezmian khanate, invaded Russia, Poland, Silesia, Moravia, Hungary, and eastern Austria, and pushed into Asia Minor, their advances...
8 Yuan Campaigns in the Eastern Sea
The year 1260 marked a turning point in the history of the continent of Eurasia. In the first decades of their eruption from the Gobi Desert, the expansion of the Mongols had been in all directions, but, with the exception of their destruction of the Jin empire...
9 Yuan Naval Campaigns to the South
The extension of Mongol power southward into Indochina was undertaken about the same time as the khans consolidated their domination of the Korean peninsula and began to look across the sea towards Japan. In the winter of l257–8, as part of their...
Part IV CONCLUSIONS
Conclusions: The Collapse of the Yuan, Rise of the Ming, and China as a Sea Power
The Yuan navy gradually declined following the death of Qubilai Qan in 1294. His successors halted the preparations for further expeditions against Japan and Annam, and, despite rumors of Japanese plans to invade China, as happened in 1304, the Yuan...
Page Count: 392
Illustrations: 4 images
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