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Haiguo tuzhi 海國圖志

May 28, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald

Haiguo tuzhi 海國圖志 "Atlas and description of the countries beyond the seas" is a world geography written by the late Qing-period 清 (1644-1911) historian and philosopher Wei Yuan 魏源 (1794-1857). Under the impression of China's defeat during the First Opium War, Wei Yuan compiled a military history of the Qing dynasty, the Shengwuji 聖武記, and the 100-juan long Haiguo tuzhi.

The compilation of a world geography was suggested to him by governor Lin Zexu 林則徐 (1785-1850) who had translated Hugh Murray's (1779-1846) Encyclopaedia of Geography, Comprising a Complete Description of the Earth under the title of Sizhouzhi 四洲志 "The Four Continents". The need to deal with a new danger of "barbarians" attacking China necessitated a deeper knowledge of their states, their customs and habits and their history. China was to learn from the advanced technology of the barbarians in order to check them. Foreign naval, military and industrial technology was to be adopted by China. China's armies had furthermore to be modernized, with a clear cut in quantity in favour to a better training and professionalization.

The Haiguo tuzhi was first printed in 1842 with a length of 50 juan. In 1847 a second, enlarged version was published with a length of 60 juan. The final, 100 juan long version, was published in 1852.

Table 1. Contents of the Haiguo tuzhi 海國圖志
1. 安南國 Annam (Vietnam)
2. 暹羅國 The land of the Lolo (Thailand)
3. 緬甸國 Miandian (Myanmar)
4. 印度國 Yindu (India)
5. 巴社國 Bashe (Persia)
6. 阿丹國 Adan (Adan, Yemen)
7. 都魯機國 Duluji (Turkey)
8. 依捐國 Yijuan (Egypt)
9. 阿邁斯尼國 Amaisini (Ethiopia, Sudan)
10. 東阿夫利加洲 Dong Afulijia zhou (East Africa)
11. 阿夫利加洲之北四國 Afulijia zhou zhi bei si guo (four countries in North Africa)
12. 南阿夫利加洲 Nan Afulijia zhou (Southern Africa)
13. 西阿夫利加洲 Xi Afulijia zhou (West Africa)
14. 中阿夫利加州 Zhong Afulijia zhou (Central Africa)
15. 布路亞國 Buluya (Portugal)
16. 大呂宋國 Da Lüsong "Great Luzon" (Spain)
17. 荷蘭及彌爾尼壬國 Helan ji Mirniren (Holland and Belgium)
18. 佛蘭西國 Folanxi (France)
19. 意大里亞國 Yidaliya (Italy)
20. 耶馬尼國 emani (Germany)
21. 歐塞特里國 Ousaiteli (Austria and Southeast Europe)
22. 波蘭國 Bolan (Poland)
23. 綏林與那威國 Suilin yu Nawei (Sweden and Norway)
24. 領墨國 Lingmo (Danmark)
25. 瑞國 Rui (Switzerland)
26. 普魯社國 Pulushe (Prussia)
27. 都魯機國 Duluji (Turkey, Central Asia)
28. 英吉利國 Yingjili (England)
29. 俄羅斯國 Eluosi (Russia)
30. 悉畢厲阿國 Xibili'a (Siberia)
31. 育奈士迭國 Yunnaishidie (transliteration of "Uni[ted] States")
32. 北墨利加州之俄羅斯屬地 Bei Molijia zhou zhi Eluosi shu di (Russian territories in North America, i. e. Alaska)
33. 北墨利加州之英吉利屬地 Bei Molijia zhou zhi Yingjili shu di (British territories in North America, i. e. Canada)
34. 智利國 Zhili (Chile)
35. 世界各教 Shijie ge jiao The religions of the world
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