An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Pingding Shaan-Gan-Xinjiang huifei fanglüe 平定陝甘新疆回匪方略

Aug 14, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald

(Qinding) Pingding Shaan-Gan-Xinjiang huifei fanglüe (欽定)平定陝甘新疆回匪方略 "(Imperially endorsed) Military annals of the pacification of the Muslim bandits [!this is only a book title!] of Shaanxi, Gansu and Xinjiang" is a history on the suppression of the rebellion of the Muslim communities of the western provinces by the Qing dynasty 清 (1644-1911).

It was compiled on official order under the supervision of Chen Bangrui 陳邦瑞 (b. 1855) and submitted to the throne by the princes Ihin 奕訢 (1833-1891) and Šido 世鐸 (1843-1914) in 1892. It is part of a set of the military annals called Pingding qisheng fanglüe 平定七省方略 "Military annals of the pacification of the seven provinces". The 320-juan long book was presented to the throne in 1896.

It covers a long range of time, from the end of the campaign against the "holy warrior" Jahāngīr 張格爾 (1790-1827) in the 1820s to the late 1870s. After several decades of peace in the west, the province of Shaanxi was disturbed by the armies of the Taiping 太平 general Chen Decai 陳德才 (d. 1864) and the Nian 捻 generals Chen Fuwei 陳扶危 and Chen Dalai 陳大來 who invaded the south of that province in 1862. The Yunnanese Muslim leaders He Mingtang 赫明堂 (d. 1872) and Ren Wubai 任五敗 occupied Xi'an 西安 and killed the high Qing official Zhang Xi 張希. Simultaneously, the Muslims leaders Ma Hualong 馬化龍 (1810-1871) and Bai Yanhu 白彦虎 (1830-1882) from Gansu joined the disturbances and built up resistance at Fort Jinji 金積堡 (today in Wuzhong 吳忠, Ningxia). In 1863, they had already occupied a lot of cities in the province of Gansu.

Meanwhile, the Muslim communities in Xinjiang under the leadership of Jin Xiangyin 金相印 invited Ya`qūb Beg (Agubo 阿古柏, 1820-1877), ruler of the Andijon 安集延 (modern Uzbekistan), the natives of Kokand 浩汗, to occupy Kašɣar 喀什噶爾 and other cities on the southern route around the Taklamakan Desert. Governor-general Yang Yuemin 楊岳斌 (1822-1890) proved as an inept commander, even after several years of campaigning, so that he was replaced by Zuo Zongtang 左宗棠 (1812-1885) in 1869 who developed a new strategy. Liu Songshan 劉松山 (1833-1870) commanded the northern division, and Zuo Zongtang the middle division. Within a short time, Shaanxi was pacified.

In the next year, Ma Hualong was killed and Jijin conquered, in 1871 Hezhou 河州 fell to the Qing army, and two years later, Suzhou 肅州 was liberated. Bai Yanhu escaped to the west and was only killed in 1877. The Muslim leader Tuodelin 妥得璘 (d. 1872) had occupied Ürümqi 烏魯木齊 and was able to seize Ili 伊犁 and Tarbahatai 塔爾巴哈台 in northwest Xinjiang in 1866, where he killed general Mingyi 明誼 (d. 1868).

Jaqub Beg occupied Kašɣar and proclaimed himself king of that city. He was supported by Great Britain. Russia took the chance of this internal war to seize Ili. Zuo Zongtang entrusted Liu Jintang 劉錦棠 (1844-1894) and Zhang Yue 張曜 (1832-1891) with the reconquest of Xinjiang. When they liberated Turfan 吐鲁番, Jaqub Beg committed suicide in Kurle 庫爾勒. Only in 1879, Liu Jintang was able to kill Alidasheng 阿里達升 and to conquer Andijon.

The book begins in 1855 and covers the whole campaign against the unruly native tribes in Guizhou until 1888. It mainly consists of excerpts and full quotations from edicts and memorials the greatest part of which is also included in the Veritable Records Qingshilu 清實錄. The emperor wrote a preface in 1896, the year in which the book was printed by the Imperial Household (neiwufu 內務府). It was again printed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 外務部 in 1902.

There is also a later reprint that includes also the annals of the war against Jahāngīr, Pingding huijiang jiaoqin niyi fanglüe 平定回疆剿擒逆裔方略.

Beijing tushuguan chubanshe 北京圖書館出版社 (2010). Qingdai fanglüe quanshu 清代方略全書, Qingdai fanglüe quanshu xu 清代方略全書序.
Gao Wende 高文德, ed. (1995). Zhongguo shaoshu minzu shi da cidian 中國少數民族史大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin jiaoyu chubanshe), 1671.
Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰, ed. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 1, 924.
Xinjiang baike quanshu bianzuan weiyuanhui 《新疆百科全書》編纂委員會, ed. (2002). Xinjiang baike quanshu 新疆百科全書 (Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe), 92.
Zhou Weizhou 周偉洲, Ding Jingtai 丁景泰, ed. (2006). Sichou zhi lu da cidian 絲綢之路大辭典 (Xi'an: Shaanxi renmin chubanshe), 780.
Zhongguo fanglüe congshu 中國方略叢書 (Chengwen Publishing),