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Osprey Men-at-Arms 307 : Late Imperial Chinese Armies 1520-1840

During the Middle Ages, China had been in the forefront of military technology, pioneering the development of the cannon and the ocean-going ship, which foreigners were later to use against her. After the 15th century this progress was not maintained, and stagnation set in. By the 16th century European firearms were superior to Chinese designs, and by the middle of the 19th, China had fallen so far behind the industrialising West as to be effectively helpless. However the huge size of the empire, its cultural self-confidence and its political sophistication prevented this technological imbalance from being as immediately disastrous as it had been for many other societies. In fact at the end of the 18th century - following an era which had seen the world increasingly divided into colonial powers and their victims - the Ch'ing dynasty of the Manchus, who had overthrown the native Ming in the 1640s, ruled over the largest and most populous empire in the world, with territories that had doubled in size in the previous few decades. Chris Peers provides a study of late imperial Chinese armies from 1520-1840, accompanied by plenty of illustrations and photographs, including eight full page colour plates by Christa Hook.

    Contents
  • Introduction
  • Chronology
  • The Late Ming 1517-1598
  • The Great Wall
  • The European Impact
  • The Fall of the Ming
  • The Shun Army
  • The Chi'ing Dynasty 1644-1842
  • The Plates

 

Osprey Men-at-Arms


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