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Osprey Campaign 85 : Peking 1900 : The Boxer Rebellion

In the 19th century China was gradually becoming another colony of the European powers that saw in her many riches that were ripe for the picking. From 1860 when Britain went to war with her, until the end of the century, China was constantly at odds with the world powers and her neighbours. While she was attempting to modernise, the archaic condition of her army was displayed in the Sino-Japanese War of 1894-95 when she was soundly beaten by the new Asian upstart. The great powers saw this as the opportunity for more exploitation and land grabbing. By 1897, the Chinese were desperate to remove all foreigners from their land and used the Boxers as a tool for this purpose. The Boxers were a secret society who sought to rid their country of the pernicious influence of the foreign powers who had gradually acquired a stranglehold on China. Numerous atrocities were committed against foreigners, particularly missionaries. In 1900 a violent rebellion swept northern China - the Boxer rebellion and with the connivance of the Imperial Court the Boxers laid siege to the legation quarter of Peking. Trapped inside were an assortment of diplomats, civilians and a small number of troops. Sir Claude MacDonald, the British Minister in Peking, had to defend against thousands of hostile Boxers and Imperial troops. It would now be a race against time. Could the rag-tag defenders hold out long enough for the gathering relief force to reach them? Peter Harrington describes the desperate series of events as a multinational force rushed to their rescue. With illustrations by Alan Perry.

    Contents
  • Background to the Boxer Rebellion
  • Chronology
  • Opposing Commanders
  • Opposing Armies
  • Opposing Plans
  • The Siege and Relief of Peking
  • The aftermath of the Siege
  • The Battlefield Today
  • Guide to Further Reading
  • Index

 

Osprey Campaign


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