The Kan’ei shōsetsu and the Riben qishi ji

  • Masuda Wataru


The Taiping movement was, of course, an anti-Qing revolution which arose toward the end of the dynasty, a struggle which rocked the foundations of Manchu rule and nearly succeeded in toppling it. If we return 210 years prior to the rebellion, we find, in the very last years of the Ming dynasty, a war of resistance fought by Han Chinese against the Manchu armies which had invaded Chinese soil from Manchuria to the northeast. The Ming state was on the verge of collapse, and the war sent shock waves as far away as Japan. News of the great tumult of this dynastic transition in China and the ethnic clash it engendered were conveyed to Japan at the time. I would like now to examine how the news was received and what response was made in Japan at the time.


Ming Dynasty Japanese Translation Buddhist Text Military Expedition Military Assistance 
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  1. g.
    Part of this document, as well as certain details of this tale, have been closely examined in Ronald P. Toby, State and Diplomacy in Early Modern Japan: Asia in the Development of the Tokugawa Bakufu (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1991), esp. p. 125. The names in this list of daimyōs include titles (only some of which are translated inter alia); such titles only extremely rarely indicate an actual job one performed.Google Scholar
  2. h.
    Editions of these works, most of them held in the collection of Harvard-Yenching Library, include the following: Huang Zongxi, Xingchao lu, in Xu Youlan, comp., Shaoxing xianzheng yishu (Literary Remains of Scholars from Shaoxing) (Zhejiang, 1895), volumes 47–48; (Taibei reprint: Wenhai chubanshe, 1969?).Google Scholar
  3. —, Lizhouyizhu huikan, comp. Xue Fengchang (Shanghai: Zhonghua shuju, 1910), 20 stringbound volumes; (Taibei reprint: Longyan chubanshe, 1969), two volumes; (Taibei reprint: Wenhai chubanshe, 1969), two volumes.Google Scholar
  4. —, Jingtuo yishi, comp. Chenhu Yishi (n.p.: Jinzhang tushuju, n.d.), 24 stringbound volumes. It should be noted that the Riben qishi ji is not to be found in the list of texts given for this collection in the Harvard-Yenching catalogue.Google Scholar
  5. i.
    The following bibliographical citations for editions of works mentioned in this paragraph can (also) be found in the collection of Harvard-Yenching Library: Xu Zi, Xiaotian jinian fukao (1861, 20 juan); Wang Chongwu, annot. (Shanghai reprint: Zhonghua shuju, 1957), 2 volumes; (Taibei reprint: Bank of Taiwan, 1962, Taiwan wenxian congkan 134), five volumes; (Beijing: Zhonghua shuju, 1967), 20 juan.Google Scholar
  6. —, Xiaotian jizhuan (Jinling, 1887); (Beijing reprint: Zhonghua shuju, 1958), 65 juan; appended to Xu Zi, Xiaotian jinian (Taibei reprint: Bank of Taiwan, 1963, Taiwan wenxian congkan 138), 65 juan; (Taibei reprint: Wenhai chubanshe, 1969?), 4 volumes; (Taibei reprint: Taiwan xuesheng shuju, 1977), 2 volumes.Google Scholar
  7. Wen Ruilin, Nanjiang yishi (Shanghai reprint: Zhonghua shuju, 1959), 52 juan; (Taibei reprint: Bank of Taiwan, 1962, Taiwan wenxian congkan 132), 1830 edition in six stringbound volumes; (Tokyo reprint: Daiyasu, 1967, in a volume entitled Ban-Min shiryō sōsho [Collection of Documents on the Late Ming]).Google Scholar
  8. Wengzhou Laomin, Haidong yishi (Taibei reprint: Bank of Taiwan, 1961, Taiwan wenxian congkan 99), 18 juan.Google Scholar
  9. Shao Tingcai, Dongnan jishi (Taibei reprint: Bank of Taiwan, 1961, Taiwan wenxian congkan 96), 12 juan.Google Scholar

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© Joshua A. Fogel 2000

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  • Masuda Wataru

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