Manual Divided China: Preparing for Reunification 883947

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It is noted though, if the eunuchs were clearly the backers of the man appointed. If the court had no choice but to honour the only strong man in the province, the governor is described as court-appointed. The history of the 20 years after was for the court largely the history of dealing with these three provinces. CTS , 5a—6a. Howard S. Also CWTS 25, 3a—4a. The new province created for him consisted of Tai and Hsin Chou cut out of the large Ping province. For the period after , see Robert M. This is not supported by any other sources, and is rightly rejected, but it indicates the different contemporary understanding of the motives involved.

Also important is TCTC —, passim. His place in Chinese history has been a lowly one.

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Traditional Chinese historians have always made villains of the men who dethroned emperors of long and distinguished lines. In recent years, however, he has been castigated for different reasons. It is, however, impossible to determine if he had made any innovations in the organization of the Pien provincial government because few details have been preserved about the other provinces.

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It seems clear chapter Pien province consisted of four prefectures south of the Grand Canal, two of which also controlled a large area north of it. In the province, there were important stations and granaries which had been built to aid grain transportation along the Canal. But its importance was not only economic. Its strategic position had proved essential ever since for the containment of the independent governors of Ho-pei and for the subjugation of rebel governors in Ho-nan.

This was in the hands of professional soldiers and surrendered rebels who had been mutinous several times in the late eighth and early ninth centuries, but who had been loyal to the court-chosen governors since It may also have been due to some bargaining about the number of men he was allowed to take with him to the province. The rebel army that had surrendered with him had been largely dispersed or absorbed into the imperial armies with which it had fought. There is no mention of the sections of the Pien provincial army that had been called to save the imperial capital at the time of his chapter An early supporter who joined him later at Pien Chou has also been included to complete the picture of the most trusted men in his new career.

Origins obscure; a military retainer. The guards were a most important body of men. It was normal at this time for a governor to select his own men for the guards, especially men who were his military retainers. He had, however, also to consider re-employing the men whose place in the guards had been hereditary. Of the men in the Table above, Ting Hui no. An important factor in his early control of the army was certainly its reorganization under personally selected men whom he could trust, especially under the military retainers he had placed in the guards garrison.

The coffers and the granaries were empty. Fighting increased day by day But the dangers were there. He had marched to save a county in Po Chou and as a result of the victory took over the prefectural capital. His previous comrades also provided him with a counter-weight against any opposition to his leadership which might be found in the professional section of the provincial army.

It put him in a stronger position to decide on a policy of expansion and gave him a freer hand in directing the army from where he chose. Most of them were military men of lowly origins who had had no previous connexions with him. Their surrender was expedient for him as well as for themselves.

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His trust in them seems to have been repaid by loyal service from every one who can be found in historical records. The task which each man was given throws some light on his organization. It is possible that the two were permitted to keep their own retainers. Origins obscure; a commander. Cousin of the above; rank unknown. Probably brother of no.

Several of the men in the table were soon given their own commands, but not all were given military duties. There was no central authority to direct any of them to help him and he could only expect support from those governors and prefects whom he could persuade to form alliances with him.

Such a race to capture that provincial capital is evidence of the desperate conditions at the time when the procedures of gubernatorial succession were completely ignored. Whichever of the two attacking armies that could take Hua Chou would have the use of a whole army.

Two other efforts at recruiting outside his own territory were more immediately rewarding. One was directed at western Ho-nan.

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It then chapter The task took about six months. This large army had to pass through Yen province where the governor tried to stop it. It had obtained men, horses and equipment after each of the three victories and now augmented these by enlisting men in the captured county. It is claimed that the army returned after being away for only two months with 10, recruits and 1, horses. The plan was a shrewd one.

By sending these men to live off the country away from his besieged capital, he not only stopped the drain on his granaries but also increased the size of his armies. Thus, even if he did not succeed in recruiting that many new recruits from the east, the recruits from the west could have swelled the number of new men to a total of 10, Although there were dissensions and jealousy among the other governors, the opposition to him was still extremely strong and it took him ten years to win the leadership he coveted.

And it was to take another ten years before he founded the Liang dynasty. They form the historical background to this study of his growing power.


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Table A. Lost four Huai-nan prefectures. Grand attack badly defeated. Deposed boy emperor and founded Liang. He had to work within the framework of the chieh-tu shih system.

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This system had weakened the existing central government so that he and other governors could develop their own power. But it also put limitations on their ability to expand that power. It was a slow task which required many adjustments to be made in the provincial structure. It was not possible for him to lead all the battles. Chu chapter This was to no avail. In this way, no one commander could threaten his authority so dangerously again. The details of the organization are not clear, but there is information about a few of the units which formed the core of this army.

If he was killed, all the men were executed. This was not entirely effective and numerous bandit gangs were made up of deserters and men of defeated regiments who dared not return. He then abandoned the tattooing system to induce tattooed deserters to give up banditry and return to their homes. This practice was extended to army commanders when the imperial surname was bestowed as a reward for military success.

There is considerable confusion about his chapter Chu Yu-kung was executed for murdering emperor Chao-tsung in The records on a few men in his service show him to have been like the other governors in his willingness to use bureaucrats of more or less distinguished origins. He was so trusted that the administration of Pien Chou was left entirely in his hands. Another trusted man was the assistant governor who was probably from an aristocratic family.

After he had failed the imperial examinations, he was given the rank of General of the Metropolitan Guards and sent out to be a prefect. Unfortunately, his prefecture was already lost to rebels and he had to return. An important factor was the raids and extortions of an army living off the countryside and the little towns. Two interesting examples of these methods used at Pien Chou are recorded. The other was the formation of a special cavalry regiment consisting of the sons of wealthy families who had military talent and who could probably always be relied upon to provide their own arms, armour, horses and retainers and, if necessary, their own food supplies.

It was one of the few institutions still controlled by the bureaucrats at court. He had hoped that as commissioner, he would be able to use its resources to back his many campaigns. The request was refused.

Divided China: Preparing for Reunification 883-947

Again he was refused. Actually, it is doubtful if the commission would have been effective. What tenuous hold it still had over the salt mines of Szechuan and north-west of the Great Wall near the far bend of the Huang Ho probably lapsed after He could have used his powers as commissioner as an excuse to intervene in the neighbouring provinces. Whatever tribute that was still sent to the emperor at Lo-yang was available to him. But his expenses had also increased and he still depended on ad hoc provincial supplies.

An example of this was the help he received from the independent Wei province in the Ho-pei region. The expenses for the armies he sent were probably paid by the province. It is interesting to note that Lo Shaowei continued this help. But as the number of provinces he MAP V chapter He promptly sent his military deputy as deputy governor liu-hou at the head of an army. Three years later, he gave up his claim to Yang province in exchange for that of Hua. There is an interesting feature in this change.

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First, the garrison in one of the prefectures in his own province turned against him and it took him two months to recapture the garrison town. The towns could thus hold out till the main army was sent to their rescue. With Pien Chou as the new focus of power, he built up direct control of all the prefectures and deprived the new governors he appointed of the power to interfere with the prefects. For the smaller area of Ho-nan, the control was successful.