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Videos about China's Resistance War:
The Battle of Shanghai & Nanking;
Bombing of Chungking;
The Burma Road
Videos about China's Resistance War: China's Dunkirk Retreat (in English); 42 Video Series (in Chinese)
THE YUAN DYNASTY
Khubilai Khan and the Yuan (First) Dynasty (AD 1261-1368)
In August 1259, Mengke Khan died on Mount Diaoyushan of the Hezhou Prefecture (today's Sichuan Province) after failing to take over a Soong castle. The Mongols hence called off the campaign. Later in 1279, the Mongols avenged the shame of Mengke Khan's possible bombardment death by killing 1.4 million residents of the Chengdu city.
Before returning to Helin, Arik-Buka (Ariq-boeke), a junior brother of Khubilai, held an assembly in Helin and declared himself 'khan'. Khubilai stopped at Jinlianchuan (Kaiping, i.e., Duolun, Cha'haer, Inner Mongolia) and declared himself Khan without an assembly. Yao Shu and Lian Xixian were ordered to make an announcement of the Khubilai enthronement in the Chinese language. A Chinese era was declared, namely, the First Year of the Zhongtong Era, AD 1259. Liu Bingzhong and Xu Heng revised on Genghis Khan's governmental structure of 'Duanshi-guan' (criminal prosecutor), 'Wan-hu' (10,000 head military chief), and Jurchen-style titles of 'yuan-shuai' (marshal) and 'xuan-hu' (pacifier) for provinces. The new structure will be i) 'zhongshu sheng' (state affairs), ii) 'shumi yuan' (military affairs), and iii) 'yushi tai' (promotion and demotion of officials). Lower levels will include shi, jian, yuan, si, wei, and fu. The provincial affairs would be handled by 'xing-sheng', 'xing-tai', 'xuan-hu', 'lian-fang' and 'muming zhangguan', and levels included 'Lu' (comprising of several provinces), 'Fu' (province or prefecture), 'Zhou' (smaller prefectures) and 'Xian' (county). But discrimination against the Chinese was rampant. The Mongols would assume the primary posts while the Han Chinese the deputy posts. The tax administration were mostly laid in the hands of the Muslims - allies of the Mongols. A caste society was established, with four levels differentiated: 1) the Mongols, 2) Se Mu Ren or Semuren, 3) Han-Ren (i.e., northern Chinese, the Khitans etc), and 4) Nan-zi (the southern "Chinese-barbarians").
Arik-Buka (Ariq-boeke), a junior brother of Khubilai, held an assembly in Helin and declared himself 'khan'. Lian Xixian, on his own initiative, frustrated the attempts of the Arik-Buka emissaries (Liu Taiping and Huo Luhuai) at Peking and defeated a general who answered Arik-Buka's order. Khubilai then attacked Arik-Buka and drove him off in AD 1261. At the advice of Liu Bingzhong, Khubilai Khan moved his capital to Peking in AD 1260, i.e., the winter capital Dadu ("great capital") or Khanbalik in Marco Polo's Cambaluc. This was in addition to the summer palace at Shangdu (the Xanadu of Coleridge). After being in reign for five years, Khubilai Khan declared a new era of Zhiyuan in AD 1263. Later in AD 1271, the Mongols adopted the dynastic name Yuan, meaning the first or origin.
Khubilai Khan sent an embassy, comprising of scholar officials Hao Jing, He Yuan and Liu Renjie, to Southern Soong. Southern Soong Prime Minister, in order to hide his previous treachery acts from Emperor Lizong (Zhao Yun, reign AD 1224-1264), would imprison the Mongol emissaries. Khubilai Khan sent another emissary to Soong border general Li Tingzhi. Li's report to Emperor Lizong was covered up by Jia Sidao. Khubilai Khan issued a war decree in the second year of the Zhongtong Era (Ad 1260). Mongol governor-general in charge of the Huai River and Yangtze areas, Li Zhan (Li Tan?), defected to Soong in the spring of the third year of the Zhongtong Era. Hearing of that, Khubilai Khan ordered Shi Tianze to attack the defector general at Ji'nan, Shandong. After a few months siege, the Mongols took over Ji'nan and killed Li Zhan via a cruel penalty of splitting the body.
The Siege Of Xiangyang
Around AD 1264, during the fifth year of the Zhongtong Era, Khubilai Khan changed name to the Zhiyuan Era. Arik-Buka was spared and came to surrender. At this time, a Soong officer at Tongchuan, called Liu Zheng, who was being resented by prime minister Jia Sidao, surrendered his 15 prefectures to the Mongols and was conferred the posts of 'xing(2)sheng(3)' and 'an-hu-shi' for today's northern Sichuan areas and the Han-zhong territory. Liu Zheng proposed to have the Soong Chinese grain supply cut off at Xiangyang. A Soong Chinese General in Sichuan, Lü Wende, did not pay attention to Liu Zheng's building up the castles to cut off Xiangyang from the Sichuan basin. Lü Wende said that Xiangyang had ten years of grain supply. General Lü Wenhuan at Xiangyang wrote to Lu Wende, but he was ignored. On the Mongol side, Liu Zheng and A-zu led the Mongols to Xiangyang and encircled it for four-five years.
The new Soong Emperor Duzong (Zhao Qi, reign AD 1264-1274) again conferred Jia Sidao the important posts and added an extra title called 'Tai Shi', i.e., the imperial tutor. Jia Sidao was extolled as comparable to Archduke Zhou of the Western Zhou Dynasty. Jia Sidao pretended to resign several times, but Emperor Duzong would not let him go. Jia Sizong continued to shield the Xiangyang siege from the emperor. When a concubine told Duzong that Xiangyang had been under siege for 3 years, Jia Sidao would order that the woman be killed. The notoriety of Jia Sidao was best illustrated by another story: When one concubine of Jia Sidao's saw a young man on the bank of the Xihu Lake (West Lake) and exclaimed about the beauty of the young man, Jia Sidao would order that the young man be killed in front of the concubine. In Sichuan, after Lü Wende died, his brother-in-law, Fan Wenhu, took over the post, but Fan, like his predecessor, refused to send the relief army to Xiangyang. At one time, Jia Sidao ordered Li Tingzhi and Fan Wenhu to aid Xiangyang. Fan Wenhu and his 100,000 men were defeated. Two generals under Li Tingzhi, i.e., Zhang Shun and Zhang Gui, sailed along the Han-shui River; Zhang Gui broke through the Mongol siege lines; and Zhang Gui died on the Han-shui River. Zhang Shun barely entered Xiangyang alive. After finding out that Xiangyang was in great danger, Zhang Shun, hiring two brave men, exited Xiangyang for sake of appealing for aid with Fan Wenhu in Sichuan Province. But soon after Zhang Shun broke through the Mongol siege lines, he encountered the Mongol ships and was caught by the Mongols. Zhang died in the Mongol hands. Then, the sister city of Fancheng was taken over by the Mongols, where two generals, Fan Tianshun and Niu Fu, died. The Mongols deployed the catapults (made by the Persian engineers) against the outer wall of Xiangyang and destroyed it. Everytime Lü Wenhuan climbed up the citywall, he would have tears in his eyes while facing the south where the Soong court was located. A Mongol general called on Lü Wenhuan to surrender, saying that Lü Wenhuan had done his job by guarding Xiangyang for five years. After they broke the arrows to swear forgivenness and sincerity, Lü Wenhuan surrendered and was conferred the post of 'Da-dudu' or governor-general for Xiangyang and the Han-shui River areas.
Demise Of the Soong Dynasty
At this time, Emperor Duzong died, and his four year old son, Emperor Gongdi (Zhao Xian, reign 1274-1275), was made into an emperor in AD 1275. The Mongols sent Shi Tianze and Bo-yan (Bayan, grandson of Subetei) on a full campaign against Soong. Shi Tianze died en route. Bayan ordered that A-zu head the first column and depart for the Yangtze from Xiangyang, with Lu Wenhuan as a fore-runner general; the 2nd column was to be headed by Mang-wu and was to depart from Yangzhou, with Liu Zheng as a forerunner general. Bayan took over numerous cities on the way, slaughtered one town, and killed and captured numerous Soong generals. Soong Dowager Empress Xie-shi had no choice but to rely on Jia Sidao for fighting the Mongols. More Soong generals surrendered, including Fan Wenhu in Sichuan, Chen Yi in Huangzhou (the Huanggang area in today's Hubei). Hearing that Liu Zheng had passed away, Jia Sidao had a short ecstasy and led an army of about 130,000 against the Mongols, but he was defeated on the Yangtze River. In today's Jiangsu areas, around the Yangtze, Zhenjiang and Jiangyin were deserted in face of the Mongol attacks. Jia Sidao sent an emissary to Bayan for peace, but met with declination. Jia Sidao requested with dowager empress for relocation of the Soong capital, but Empress Xie-shi refused to move.
Several ministers at the Soong court requested that Jia Sidao be deprived of his posts, and Soong was to release the former Mongol emissaries like Hao Jing as a good-will gesture. At this moment, Zhang Shijie of E'zhou (Hubei Province), Wen Tianxiang of Jiangxi and Li Fei of Hunan came to the east to help the Soong court. Jiankang (i.e., Nanking) was deserted by a Soong general. Changzhou and Wuxi were next taken by the Mongols. Khubilai Khan then sent Lian Xixian and Yan Zhongfan to Soong for talking about ceasefire. Lian Xixian requested with Bayan for bodyguards, but Bayan advised that the more bodyguards Lian was to take with him, the more likely the Soong Chinese might harm him. Lian obtained 500 soldiers, but once Lian arrived at the Dusong-guan [lonely pine] Pass, Soong General Zhang Ru killed Yan Zhongfan and captured Lian Xixian. (History of the Yuan Dynasty stated that Lian was killed, too.) Bayan reprimanded the Soong's acts, and sent another emissary, Zhang Xu, to the Soong court together with a Soong emissary. Again, Zhang Xu was killed by a Soong border general. Then, the Mongols stopped the peace talks and attacked Yangzhou on the north bank of the Yangtze (Changjiang River). The Mongols attacked Yangzhou and defeated two generals under Li Tingzhi. The Jiading town surrendered next. Zhang Shijie's navy was defeated on the Yangtze by the Mongol fire attack. Wen Tianxiang arrived in Lin'an (Hangzhou) the capital, but Empress Dowager did not take his advice. Jia Sidao was expelled from the capital and he was killed by the escort official en route. Taizhou was lost to the Mongols, and Changzhou was slaughtered. In Hunan, Li Fei died, and both Hunan and Jiangxi Provinces were lost. After taking over the Dusong-guan Pass, the Mongols were closing in onto the Soong capital. A Soong minister called Liu Yue was sent to the Mongol camp for peace, but Bayan declined it, saying the Soong Emperor obtained the throne from a kid and would lose it in the hands of a kid. Lu Xufu was sent to the Mongols for expressing a wish to be a Mongol nephew, but the Mongols declined it. Soong's new prime minister, Chen Yizhong, sent Liu Yue to the Mongols in the attempt of expressing ackowledgement as a Mongol vassal, but Liu Yue was killed by a Soong Chinese civilian en route, at Gaoyou of Jiangsu Province. The Mongols then sacked Jiaxing and An'jie of Zhejiang Province. Wen Tianxiang and Zhang Shijie advised that the Soong court relocated to the islands in the seas, but Prime Minister Chen Yizhong decided to send the imperial seal to Mongols for a surrender. Bayan requested that Chen personally came to the Mongol camp. Chen fled to Wenzhou, a southern Zhejiang coastal city. Zhang Shijie led his people into the sea. Wen Tianxiang was made into the rightside prime minister and was ordered to go to the Mongols for peace. Wen was arrested by Bayan after he accused Bayan of invasion. In AD 1276, Bayan took over Lin'an and forced the downager empress into issuing the surrender order. The Soong royal family, including the downager empress and Emperor Gongdi, was sent to Peking. Along the Canal, Wen Tianxiang slipped out of the Mongol camp, and took ride of a boat in the Yangtze for the seas, ahead of the Mongol troops' closing in.
Late Soong Emperor Duzong had two more sons, whowere 11 and 6 year old, respectively. They fled to Wenzhou before Lin'an was taken by the Mongols. Chen Yizhong sailed them to Fuzhou of Fujian Province where a new Soong court was set up. Eleven year old Zhao Shi was made into Emperor Ruizong (reign AD 1275-1278). Zhang Shijie, Su Liuyi, and Lu Xiufu consecutively arrived in Fuzhou. Chen Yizhong was retained as leftside prime minister, while Wen Tianxiang, after fleeing from the Mongols, also arrived in Fuzhou and acted as rightside prime minister. The Soong court would last another three years before a final demise. The Mongols continued to push south. Canton (Guangzhou) of Guangdong Province was taken, where Soong General Huang Jun died. Yangzhou on the Yangtze Bank were taken, where General Li Tingzhi was captured and killed. The Mongols then invaded Fujian Province.
The Soong Court was frequently on the run, from one island to another, along the coast, and on May 8th of AD 1278, the new Soong Emperor died of illness within two years of enthronement. The now eight-year-old brother, Zhao Bing (King Wei-wang), was made the new emperor Di-bing on June 28th of AD 1278. Note Di-bing had no posthumous imperial title at all. Chen Yizhong died; Lu Xiufu was made into the leftside prime minister. When the Mongols attacked again, the Soong Court fled to Yashan, somewhere in the Pearl River and near Macao. Mongol General Zhang Hongfan led a surprise attack at Chaoyang (Chaoshan areas, Guangdong Province) and captured Wen Tianxiang who later wrote the famous poem entitled 'Ling Ding Yang' or 'Lingding Sea'. At the Yashan Island, Zhang Shijie nailed together his fleet, trying to defend the straits. Zhang Shijie declined Zhang Hongfan's invitation for surrender. After a defeat, Zhang Shijie broke through the siege with 16 ships. When chased by the Mongols, Lu Xiufu, with young emperor on his back, jumped into the sea with emperor on his back after driving his family into the sea. On Feb 26th of AD 1279, after driving his family into the sea, Lu jumped into the sea with emperor on his back. Zhang Shijie met with a hurricane near the Hailingshan Mountain, preyed that his ship sink should the Heaven intend to capsize the Soong Dynasty, and died when his ship was sunken. The Soong Dynasty officially ended in AD 1279, after a total of 320 years, including 152 (153?) years in southern China. The Soong royal tombs would be dug up by a Central Asian monk for treasures. Khubilai Khan declared the dynasty of Yuan ("first" or "beginning") in this year.
In Sichuan Province, as said by Liu-sha-he, the Mongols sacked Chengdu city for a second time and left 1.4 million skeletons. Liu-sha-he cited Yuan Dynasty's Heh Qingquan in stating that the Mongol army killed the Chengdu people in batches of 50 and repeatedly pierced the dead bodies to make sure the victims had been actually killed. (Liu-sha-he also had comments on the Di barbarians' massacring Chengdu in 301 AD as well as rebel Zhang Xianzhong's slaughter in AD 1644.)
The Yuan Dynasty (AD 1261-1368)
Khubilai Khan obtained his throne without a proper assembly, and hence he had lost the kind of mandate over ruling the other Mongol khanates. By moving the capital to Peking from Karakorum (rebuilt by Ogedei in AD 1235), he had changed the old Mongol yasaq. In the very beginning, Jochi's son, Batu, ruled the region to the north and west of Lake Balkash (extending from Hungary to the Kirghiz Plains, and from the lower Danube to the Caucasus); Chagadai was given the southwestern region to the east of River Amu-darya and to the southeast of River Syr-Darya, including today's Afghanistan, Turkestan, the former Naiman territories around the Altai, and central Siberia; Ogedei was awarded China and East Asia; Tului, the youngest of the four sons, was to have central Mongolia. Later, the Tului sons exterminated the ruling of Ogedei's descendants and diminished the domain of the Ogedei descendants, and the Chagadai domain was curtailed; Hulegu was given the territories beyond the Oxus River and the Hindu Kush. Nominally, Khubilai Khan was in charge of all khanates: 'Amu-darya Xingsheng' was in charge of Ilkhante and Kipchak Khanate; 'Lingbei (north ridge) Xingsheng' was in charge of Ogedei Khanate; and two 'yuan shuai (marshal)' offices were in charge of Chagadai Khanate. A separate 'Liaoyang Xingsheng' was in charge of Manchuria. After declaring his dynasty of Yuan, Khubilai Khan could only be considered a ruler of China and Mongolia.
Before subjugating the Southern Soong, Kubilai sent a fleet of 150 boats against Japan in AD 1274. Marco Polo supposedly had travelled to and stayed in China during the period of AD 1275 - 1292. Two years after the 1279 conquest of Southern Soong, the Kubilai's empress, an Onggirat woman, passed away. The Mongol khans had a custom of marrying the Onggirat women, a convention passed down from Genghis Khan. A niece of the empress would become the new empress. But Khubilai, though getting older, chose to go to the capital of Shang-du (i.e., Kaiping) for sake of indulging himself in concubines there (i.e., concubines from the past emperors). Kubilai hired a Muslim as his finance minister, and this person, A-he-ma, had done his best to exploit the people in the iron and salt trades. A-he-ma's nepotism would include over 500 officials across the country. A-he-ma would later be killed by a 'qian hu' who issued an order in the name of the crown prince. Khubilai then renovated politics a bit by ordering Guo Shoujing to recompile a calendar, promoting the overseas trading, and inviting some Confucian descendant as the academy official. Rebellions broke out in coastal China of Fujian and Guangdong. Owing to rumors about the Soong revival, Khubilai relocated late Soong Emperor Gongdi (now Duke Yingguo-gong) to Shang-du and ordered that ex-Song prime minister Wen Tianxiang be executed should he refuse to surrender. Wen Tianxiang wrote a poem, stating that "Confucius proposed that one should die for compassion (Ren) and Mencius suggested that one should die for righteousness (Yi). Only when righteousness is fully exerted will the compassion be derived. What should I endeavour after educating myself with so many books of the ancient saints? However, I am sure that I feel no guilty about myself from this death moment on." (Confucius wording for 'Ren' should mean a broader sense of human perfection, similar to nirvana in Buddhism. 'Ren' also meant nucleus in Chinese, as used for the nucleus of various fruits like apple.) Khubilai, impressed by this poem, would confer a title of Duke Lulingjun-gong on Wen Tianxiang posthumously.
The Death Toll in the Hands of the Mongols
Forums where this webmaster had extensive discussions on the Mongol/Manchu massacres
About the Song population. It is
about time for me to go against the history books, and use my judgment to make
a case as to how many people had been killed and how the household ratios
changed during the said time period.
The Invasion of Japan
Champa & Annam
The Mongol Internal Strife
Khubilai exercised only the nominal ruling over the rest of khanates. The khanates, however, had already engaged themselves in disputes and wars. In AD 1265, Mamluk Baybars made an alliance with Berke Khan (Batu's brother and successor) against Hulegu. Berke withdrew when Khubilai sent 30,000 troops to aiding the Ilkhans. Arik-Buka (Ariq-boeke), the junior brother of Khubilai, had received the covert aid from Khan Haidu (grandson of Ogedei, i.e. Mongol Emperor Taizong posthumously). Arik-Buka later surrendered to Khubilai.
The grandson of Chagatai, Ya-er-gu, allied himself with Haidu. When Khubilai intended to oust Ya-er-gu, he called on the grandson of Batu (Mengke-timur) and the great grandson of Chagatai Ba-la for sake of an alliance against Haidu of Ogedei Khanate. But Ba-la of Chagatai Khanate colluded with Haidu in attacking Mengke-timur of the Kipchak Khanate. When Haidu was defeated by Mengke-timur, Ba-la encroached on the territories of Haidu. Haidu sought reconciliation with Mengke-timur, and Mengke-timur defeated Ba-la. Ba-la then threatened Haidu that he would ask Khubilai to attack him. Haidu sought reconciliation with Ba-la, too. The three khans held an khuritai on the bank of the Talas River, and Haidu was proclaimed as the Grand Khan of the Mongols. Haidu then decreed to the Ilkhanate that they unite against Khubilai. The Ilkhnate khan, A-ba-ha, son of Hulegu, refused to follow Haidu; Haidu and Ba-la invaded the eastern Ilkhanate and called upon Mengke-timur to invade Ilkhanate from the northwest. A-ba-ha defeated Haidu and Ba-la, but he failed to beat back Mengke-timur. After A-ba-ha died, his brother would compete with A-ba-ha's son for the throne. Hence, Haidu gained an upper hand in the wars and moreover threatened to invade Khubilai's territories.
Khubilai dispatched Prince Ye-mu-han, Mengke's son Xi-li-jie and Muhuali's grandson An-tong against Haidu. Xi-li-jie defected to Haidu and arrested Ye-mu-han and An-tong. Khubilai then ordered prime minister Bayan to counter Haidu who was closing in on Helin. Bayan defeated Xi-li-jie and rescued Ye-mu-han and An-tong. Bayan was recalled by Khubilai when Nai-yan (the great grandson of the brother of Genghis khan) was reported to have planned rebellion in the areas between the Onon and Kerulen rivers of Mongolia. Bayan went to meet Nao-yan and failed to persuade Nai-yan. Bayan fled back to the Mongol capital. A Mongol minister recommended to Khubilai that once the khanates in the west were to be pacified, Nai-yan would succumb. This minister hence was ordered to go west and he claimed that Nai-yan had already succumbed to Khubilai. Hence the khanates all succumbed to Khubilai. After that, Khubilai led an army northward against Nai-yan. Seeing that his Mongol soldiers treated the Nai-yan soldiers with intimacy, Khubilai adopted the advice of a Chinese in having the Chinese army act as the forerunner column. General Li Ting tricked Nai-yan into a retreat and then defeated Nai-yan's army of 100,000 via a night attack using the cannons. Nai-yan was captured and executed. The remnant Nai-yan people then fled to Manchuria and attacked today's eastern Liaoning Province. Mongol 'Xuanwei-shi of Liaodong' Ta-chu requested for aid, and Khubilai sent his son over. Ta-chu defeated the Nai-yan remnants and chased them westward to the Altai. Ta-chu was conferred the title of 'wan hu'. The Nai-yan remnants, however, still remained for some time. Bayan was ordered to counter Haidu who harassed Helin in the west, and Prince Timur (grandson of Khubilai) was ordered to guard the Liao River area in the east. When a Mongol official defected to Haidu and attacked Khubilai's grandson (Gemala) near the Hang'aishan Mountain, Khubilai would lead a column to the north. Haidu retreated thereafter. Bayan would continue warfare with Haidu for sometime before he left the post at Helin.
Khubilai Seeking For the Confucians
In AD 1286, Khubilai ordered that yu-shi (Censor) Cheng Wenhai go to Southern China and seek the ex-Soong Confucians. Altogether twenty Confucians, including a Soong royal family member (Zhao Meng), were located and delivered to the Yuan court. Cheng Wenhai and an ex-Soong prime minister Liu Mengyan had both recommended an ex-Soong minister, by the name of Xie Fangde, for the Yuan court. Xie refused to eat food on the road to the capital, and he died in Peking after paying respect at the tombs of the ex-Soong empress and Duke Yingguo-gong (ex-Soong emperor). Another Confucian, by the name of Liu Mingyin who was an expert on Daoism and Neo-Confucianism, surrendered salaries to the Yuan court and left for his hometown. Yuan Dynasty's official in charge of the academy, 'Guo Zi Jian', ji-jiu (Wine Surrenderer) Xu Heng, had recommended another Confucian, Yang Gongyi, for the job of validating the calendar and endorsing the 'Civil Services Exam' system. Yang Gongyi resigned after finishing his work, and he died in the same year as Liu Mingyin, in AD 1293. Xu Heng was guilty of his serving the Mongols and asked his family not to erect a tombstone for him. Khubilai conferred Xu Heng the title of 'si-tu' and Duke Weiguo-gong posthumously for his contribution in reviving Confucianism and the spirits of Archduke of the Zhou Dynasty.
Invading Java, Declaring Amnesty, and Khubilai's Death Khubilai replaced a prime minister (Sangge) when he found out about the corruption. Khubilai quelled numerous rebellion in southern Chinese provinces. In January of AD 1293, Kubilai sent an army of 30,000 to Java and defeated the local ruler, only to be driven off by a Javanese ally. Khubilai thought about invading Annam again in AD 1293 because the new Annam king had bullied the Mongol emissary in AD 1291 and refused to come to the Yuan court to pay respect. When a meteorite was spotted in the sky, Khubilai inquired with his minister (Buwusu) about how to revert the Heaven's Omen as to his possible death. Buwusu cited Han Emperor Wendi's seeking repentance when 29 mountain quakes occurred on the same day and the sun eclipse occurred in the year. Khubilai recited Wendi's 'Decree In Regards To the Sun Eclipse', opened the royal grain barns for aiding the hunger-stricken people, and declared a general amnesty. When Khubilai fell ill again, Prime Minister Bayan was recalled to the capital from Datong. On February 18, 1294, Kubilai died at the age of eighty, after a reign of 35 years. Khubilai was given the posthumous title of Shizu (heritary ancestor).
Emperor Chengzong (Borjigin Timur, reign AD 1294-1307)
With the help of Bayan, Khubilai's grandson, Timur, was proclaimed the successor, i.e., Emperor Chengzong after the Mongol court went through a power vaccum for a few months. Timur gave his father (Zhenjin) the posthumous title of Emperor Yuzong. Timur released an Annam emissary to show his goodwill. Timur conferred the title of 'tai shi' onto Yuexi-timur, 'tai fu' onto Bayan, and 'tai bao' onto Yue-chi-cha-er. Bayan, who previously commanded the 200,000 troops against Soong, passed away in this year at the age of 59. In AD 1296, rebellion erupted in Jiangxi. The next year, a Buddhist monastery on the Wutaishan Mountain was completed at a cost of over 10,000 human lives. Phagsba's desciple was responsible for pushing this project. At the times of Khubilai, Phagsba was made into an imperial tutor, and the Tibetan buddhism was made into the national religion. Phagsba was responsible for devising the new Mongol script, with 41 letters. Phagsba was conferred the title of 'Da Bao Fa Wang', i.e., the grand treasure king for enforcing laws. Empress Onggirat led a huge column onto the Wutaishan Mountain. A Chinese official rebuked the rampant behavior of buddhist monks who came from the West.
Expulsion of the Mongols
The Mongol's discrimination against Chinese should be the top cause for the ending of its rule in China. Xu Dachao, a Soong-Yuan survivor from today's Suzhou, in "jin yu lu [records from the ember of the Mongol fire]", recorded the barbaric Mongol Droit du seigneur againt the ethnic Chinese brides. The ethnic Chinese, who had to surrender their brides' first night, had a tragic practice of killing the first born babies to preserve the line's integrity and purity in accordance with the Confucian standards.
The other causes would be collusion with the Tibetan lamas in depriving the Chinese of their lands. Still more causes would be the paper currency over-circulation, which caused inflation to go up ten folds during Yuan Emperor Shundi's reign, an important cause for the Mongol loss of power. Yuan's Prime Minnister Toktoghan (Tuo Tuo), against an objection by a Chinese official (Lu Sicheng) in charge of Guo Zi Jian (i.e., Confucian Academy), printed over five versions of the paper currency. Still one more cause would be the Yellow River flooding as a result of the Mongols' abandoning the irrigation projects. In the Mongol times, the Chinese agriculture lands were very much in wastage. Once the hundreds of thousands of Chinese civilians were called upon to work on the Yellow River, the time was ripe for a great rebellion.
In history, China's dynastic substitution was mostly the results of usurpation, mutiny or foreign invasion, except for the Yellow Turpans of Eastern Han Dynasty and the Red Turbans of Yuan Dynasty. China's dynasties twice changed by the religious organizations, namely, Zhang Jiao's Daoist "Yellow Turbans" in the late Han Dynasty, and Yuan Dynasty's Red Turbans that were related to "Ming" [bright] religion. History, though a mirror, may not have to repeat. (Religious agitations might not work in the 21st century, as in the case of the Fa Lun Gong movement. Religion-related rebellion that had crippled but failed to topple a dynasty would be the "White Lotus Society" and the "Taiping Heavenly Kingdom", incidentally. This webmaster had also read about Wang Dan's interpretation of today's China as condusive to a similar Chen Sheng & Wu Guang rebellion of the late Qin Dynasty, which was another mis-reading of history.)
Religion was used by the Chinese in rebelling against the Mongols. The secret societies rebelling against the Mongol rule would be mixed combination of Taoism, Buddhist elements and Central Asia religion. Major branches would include the White Lotus Society ("Bailian Jiao"), White Cloud Society ("Baiyun" by Kong Qingjiao), and "bright" religion ("Ming Jiao"). Mao Ziyuan of the Southern Soong Dynasty first founded the "White Lotus Society" as a Mahayanist sect of Buddhism with adoration for bodhisattva Amitabha; however, the sect had transferred the adoration to a different buddha [Maitreya Buddha?] by the Yuan Dynasty. (Later, in the 16th century, the "White Lotus Society" developed into hundreds of sub-sects, with ocurrence of major uprising against the Manchu rule in AD 1796.) Radical Chinese historians, who had attributed Zhu Yuanzhang's Ming Dynasty to an alien rule belonging to the Muslims, had pointed out that the character "ming" to the fire adoration religion of the Central Asia. The Red Turbans, i.e., "Hongjin Jun", which overthrew the Mongol rule, derived from the "bright religion" [? Zoroastrianism mutation].
The Yellow River Flooding & The Red Turbans
The Yellow River flooding caused a massive damage to the people in Ji'nan area of today's Shandong Province. The Yellow River was first worked on by Lord Yu, and eight hundred years after, the Shang people began to experience the flooding again. Major river course changes had occurred for over half a dozen times in the past 3500 years. During the 25th year reign of Yuan Emperor Shizu (Khubilai), i.e. AD 1288, the River changed course. During the 1st year reign of Yuan Emperor Shundi, i.e., AD 1335, the bank was breached at Kaifeng, Henan Province; in AD 1344, breached at the Caozhou Prefecture and Kaifeng; in AD 1345, breached near Ji'nan, Shandong Province. A Chinese official, by the name of Jia Lu, proposed to have the river course changed to the Huai-shui River in the south. Toktoghan dispatched an official, Cheng Zun, on an inspection trip. Cheng Zun proposed an alternative scheme by citing the fact that there were no royal savings for a huge project like Jia Lu's and that any mobilization of 200,000 laborers might cause the social instability. Toktoghan, angry with Cheng Zun for the suggestion that the people might rebel, petitioned with Emperor Shundi to have Jia Lu take charge of 170,000 soldiers and laborers to work on revamping the Yellow River course. Jia Lu started work in April of AD 1351 and finished work in July of the same year. However, the White Lotus Society, led by Han Shantong and Liu Futong, had secretly implanted an one-eye stone statute in the Huanglinggang area and then spread the rumor stating that rebellion would erupt should a stone man with one eye be dug up from the Yellow River's bed. Jia Lu did not pay attention to the stone man and ordered that it be destroyed. Liu Futong, after the Yuan Dynasty arrested and executed Han Shantong, would rally an army called the 'Red Turbans' and supported Han Shantong's son (Han Lin'er) as the leader. Cai Dongfan commented that the Mongols should have hired the displaced Shandong people as labor for repairing the Yellow River rather than mobilizing 170,000 people for the project.
Answering the 'Red Turbans' rebellion would be several more bands, including Li Er (Sesame Lee) in Xuzhou of Shandong Province, Xu Shouhui (a cloth vendor) in Qi-shui of Hubei Province. Guo Zixing rebelled against Yuan in Dingyuan in AD 1352. Zhang Shicheng (salt merchant) rebelled against Yuan in Taizhou of Jiangsu Prov in AD 1353. Before that, in AD 1348, Fang Guozhen (a salt worker and later a pirate) in Taizhou of Zhejiang had rebelled against the Mongols.
Toktoghan advised Emperor Shundi to put down the rebellion in Henan Prov first. Since Shundi did not want Toktoghan leave the court, Toktoghan's brother, Yexian-temur, was ordered to quell rebellion with an army of over 100,000. Yexian-temur first attacked the city of Shangcai and captured a Red Turban leader called Han Yao'er.
TO BE CONTINUED !
Written by Ah Xiang
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