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The names Fu-Hsiang, appearing after Tung, simply signify General, and the first mention I find of him is in 1890 as Brigadier at Aksu, in Kashgaria. When he next appears on the scene, it is in a more prominent capacity, in July, 1895, as the general to whom is entrusted the task of crushing the Tungan rebellion in the province of Kansuh. The explanation of his turning up at Peking was that during the Japanese War he had brought a considerable force from Central Asia, or the New Dominion, for the defence of the capital. The successes he achieved in this task are fully set forth in the gazettes of the following, December, and in the spring of 1896 the Mahomedan rising is described officially as being at an end. Tung then returned to Peking, but he was too turbulent and formidable a soldier to be retained in the capital. A special post was, therefore, improvised for him, and in January, 1898, he left for Pingyang, to take up the command of the troops in the provinces of Shansi, Shensi and Kansuh. There was a report that he had been instructed to prepare Pingyang as a new capital for the dynasty. His return from Pingyang in January last, with 10,000 troops, largely recruited from ex-Mahomedans, was a warning of coming trouble that ought not to have been neglected. Tung is a truculent and ferocious soldier, but there is no reason to believe that he is a capable general, and it is a fact that his success in Kansuh was largely due to one of his subordinates.
Of the other generals named, Nieh is probably the most important, and he is, with some reason, believed to be the friend of Jung Lu. Nieh-Sze-Chengnot to be confounded with Nieh-ChiKuei, once Superintendent of Shanghai Arsenal and Taotai of Shanghaiheld a command during the Japanese War, and he was one of the generals who saved their reputation by not be
ing absolutely beaten. After the war he was made provincial Commanderin-Chief in Pe-Chili, and entrusted with the control of the Wuyi or foreigndrilled army corps. This force forms the élite of the Chinese Army, formerly drilled by Germans and lately by Russians, and consists of 30 battalions (15,000 men) of infantry. Its headquarters are at Lutai, north of Tientsin. It is impossible to resist the conclusion that if Jung Lu and Nieh had been sufficiently energetic and wholehearted, they possessed a sufficient force of disciplined troops to deal with any number of Boxers. On the most favorable supposition it looks as if they were only trimmers.
General Ma is the Ma-yu-Kun who fought by no means badly in the Japanese War at Pingyang, and I believe him to be the son of Ma Julung, a border chief who, after being a Mahomedan, took a prominent part in suppressing the Panthay rebellion in Yunnan. He holds, with General Nieh, a command in the armies around Peking. General, sometimes called Marshal, Sou holds a command on the southern frontier in Kwangsi, and has a good Ideal to do with the French, by whom he is considered a man of ability. It must be noted to his credit that he has kept a disturbed border, long the home of desperadoes, in a state of marked tranquillity. The last of the generals is Ikotenga, the Manchu Governor-General of Manchuria, whose name has not yet been mentioned in reference to current events at Peking, but whose influence and reputation are, undoubtedly, great. During the Japanese War he showed no inconsiderable skill, and the Japanese paid him several compliments, among others that of being the first Chinese general to assume the offensive. As Governor-General of Manchuria he has also done extremely well, trebling the revenue in three years. He is probably the ablest
official in China, but it is morally certain that the Russians have already made sure of his co-operation.
I now come to six great functionaries all of Chinese race. They are in their order of importance, Li Hung Chang, Chang Chih Tung, Lin Kun Yi, Sheng Taotai, Wang Wen Chao and Li Ping Hien. It may be said that they are all more or less well known among Europeans-Li Hung Chang, indeed, being known throughout the world.
It is unnecessary to attempt any detailed description of Li Hung Chang. Of unrivalled experience, this prominent mandarin, who boasts of his five generations of Hanlin ancestors, has fallen much of late years in general estimation. Whereas he used to be called the Vice-Emperor, his removal from office on September 7th, 1898, was described as "purifying the Yamen." Among his own countrymen his name has become a by-word, and they all attribute to him the fault of China's collapse in 1894-5. Still more is he blamed for having signed the 1896 Secret Treaty with Russia, which was so soon followed by the loss of Port Arthur and Talienwan. His appointment to the Viceroyalty of Kwangtung and Kwangsi at Canton was intended as an honorable retirement, but events in the north have made some persons think that he might render some useful service. This hope must prove fallacious for other reasons, besides the weighty fact that he is in his 78th year. The great influence he had in China has waned and almost disappeared. It was largely due to his skill and success in composing difficulties and arranging compromises with the Foreign Powers, and the present difficulty does not admit of a compromise. He cannot screen the offenders at Peking from expiating their crimes on outraged humanity, and if he cannot his services in their eyes are useless. Nor can he be of use to us as a repre
sentative of the Chinese people, because they do not believe in him, and will not have him at any price. There are grave reasons for doubting the sincerity of his sentiments in favor of progress, and after the close of his European tour he became, perhaps through disappointment at its meagre results, as reactionary as the worst of the Tartars. I remember well General Gordon saying to me that if we put Li Hung Chang in the place of the Manchus, as was talked of in 1880, we should find him more obstructive and difficult than the present dynasty. think we should be prepared at any moment to see Li Hung Chang range himself on the side of the reactionaries and anti-foreigners as soon as he finds that matters cannot be patched up by one of his favorite make-believes. To whatever side he attaches himself he will bring little strength. His reputation and following are both gone, and his political like his physical vigor is now but a wreck.
Of Chang Chih Tung, the Viceroy of the dual Houkwang province, it is impossible to speak in any terms but those of respect. He is, however, old and cautious, and although he has latterly expressed ideas favorable to foreigners and progress, he was during the greater part of his career intensely conservative and anti-foreign. In that respect he was the open opponent of Li Hung Chang, with whom he was always at enmity, but his principal claim to fame was his denunciation of Chung How's treaty with Russia in 1880. As Viceroy of the Liang Kiang provincesKiangsi, Kiangsu and Anhui-he did excellent work at Nanking, restoring the prosperity of that city. In 1889 he came forward as the exponent of the views of China for the Chinese School in connection with the projected Hankow-Peking railway, and obtained a triumph over Li Hung Chang, which seemed dearly purchased when he was
transferred from Nanking to Hankow -or rather to Wouchang-to build his own railway. He has held the Viceroyalty there during the last eleven years, and his administration has been characterized by honesty and efficiency. In 1897 he took his fellow countrymen into his confidence by publishing a volume of "Essays on Exhortations to Study," in which he showed the imperative necessity for China to change her methods. It was a complete volte face on the part of the lately Chauvinist Governor-General, and made a correspondingly great sensation. The Emperor read the work and distributed 40 copies of it with his own hands. It was the first impulse he received to induce him to take up the question of reform. There are two drawbacks to the value of Chang Chih Tung's possible co-operation besides the fact that he is getting old. His military reforms have been on a limited scale, and he does not possess the available force to take any active part in restoring order outside his provinces where his authority is beyond challenge. Secondly, he retains strong prejudices against foreigners for encouraging the traffic in opium, which he declares is debasing the Chinese people. This grievance occupies a very prominent place in his mind, and merits attention, as he might make it the excuse for reverting to an anti-foreign attitude at any moment. The great reputation of Chang Chih Tung would make him a useful ally in any political enterprise in Central China, but at the same time it must be noted that his alliance would not be so easy to obtain as is thought on account of the prejudices and oldfashioned opinions he still retains, despite his having recently become an advocate of progress.
Liu Kun Yi, the other satrap of the Yangste Valley, rules at Nanking, and possesses the greater absolute power of the two. Beside, he is a younger man,
and possesses the energy that characterizes the inhabitants of his native province Hunan. He entered the service in 1861, and is now about 61 or 62. From 1875 to 1879 he first held the Viceroyalty of the Two Kiang, when he was disgraced in an official but not dishonorable sense. Soon afterwards he was appointed to Wouchang, and then, in 1889, he and Chang Chih Tung changed places. There remains this remarkable fact, that during 25 years the greater part of the important Yangtse Valley has been governed by two men. Liu has devoted far more attention to military matters than Chang, and his army of 20,000 men is well trained and well armed. He has also a small fleet, generally designated the Nanking Flotilla. He is supposed to be very well disposed to England, and has often declared his intention of protecting trade and maintaining good relations with us. But it will be prudent to remember that he is, after all, a Chinese Viceroy and not a rebel. The support that is to be looked for from him must, therefore, be only passive and local on the most favorable assumption, and we should always be prepared, in the event of Chinese successes or of delays in the Powers asserting their superiority, for these friendly and progressive Viceroys being carried away by a wave of nationalism. They are, in the first place, natives of China, and members of the oldest and most exclusive Civil Service in the world.
Sheng, Taotal of Shanghai, and Director-General of Railways, is, perhaps, the ablest among the Chinese as Ikotenga is among the Manchus. He is thoroughly unscrupulous, and for craft and cunning not to be approached. As Imperial Commissioner and then Resident in Tibet, he gained as far back as 1890, when he was a young man, a reputation for not neglecting his opportunities, which has adhered to him
By all accounts, Li Ping Hien was one of the most capable men in China, and it was he who defeated the French at Langson. In 1894 he appears as Governor designate of Shantung, and in the following year he was at his post. In 1897 he was specially mentioned by Yu Yin Lin, Fantai or provincial treasurer of Anhui, in his remarkable memorial to the Emperor as one of the men who would save China. When Liu Ping Chang was dismissed from the Viceroyship of Szchuen at the instance of the British Government. Li Ping Hien was nominated his successor. Before his departure he unfortunately got into trouble with the Germans, who made their famous descent on Kiaochao, and insisted on his removal because two German missionaries had been killed in the natal city of Confucius. Instead of proceeding to Szchuen, Li Ping Hien was, after a long diplomatic wrangle, "cashiered and declared incapable of holding any high office," while the Manchu Governor of Foochow, Ju Lu, ex-Viceroy of Manchuria, went to Chung King in his stead. Thanks to German inflexibility, Li Ping Hien, who might have been a progressist, is now the pronounced enemy of the foreigner and all his works.
ever since. He was one of those pro- a useful part in regenerating his counnounced blameworthy for the reverses in 1894-5, and he nearly lost his head. Instead of this calamity his good fortune decreed that he should receive the profitable office of Customs Taotai at Tientsin. This was in 1896, and in the following year he blossomed into VicePresident of the Board of Revision, and Director-General of the new Railway Department. He then founded the Chinese Imperial Bank, from which his countrymen can borrow at an interest ranging from 25 to 50 per cent. As Taotai at Shanghai we must have a great deal to do with him during the present crisis. He is a man to watch and to be guarded with. He resembles Li Hung Chang in several respects and he is said to be related to him. But there is no love lost between them, and Li Hung Chang tried to supplant him two years ago by one of his own creatures named Ma Chi Chang. Sheng was also unpopular with the Tsungli Yamen, and probably the source of his power was the Empress Dowager herself, whose avarice was propitiated by a share in his business profits. He is a man certain to be heard much of, and he will no doubt pose as the friend of the foreigner. The mantle of Li Hung Chang in respect of guile and humbug is falling on his shoulders.
Wang Wen Chao, Governor of Hunan in 1890, Viceroy of Yunnan in 1893, Viceroy of Pe-Chili in 1895, and again appointed in 1899, when Jung Lu's other appointments monopolized his time, is too old to take any active part in affairs. He is a man of moderation, and the friend of Prince Ching and Jung Lu. He is said to have been killed in an attempt to save the Legations. It is impossible to speak of Li Ping Hien, the last of the greater Chinese officials I have named, without some feeling of regret, as but for Gerban arbitrariness he might have played
In conclusion, I would name certain men about whom there are no detailed particulars to be given, but who may come more prominently forward in the near future. Among these Weng Tun Ho, the ex-tutor of the Emperor Kwangsu, disgraced some months before the collapse of the Reform Movement, and now living in retirement, is perhaps the most prominent. He is the firm opponent of Russia, and with better backing might have thwarted Count Cassini. Then there are the two Tsengs, viz., Tseng Kuang-luan, the present Marquis, and his cousin, the Earl of Weiyi.
A third Tseng is Tseng
Kuang-chin, nephew and adopted son of the late Ambassador, who signed the treaty of St. Petersburg, now editing a progressive Chinese paper in Shanghai, and believed to be a protégé of Viceroy Liu of Nanking. Another possibly useful official of experience is Li Chong Fung, commonly called while in England Lord Li. He is a nephew, and was for a time the adopted son, of Li Hung Chang. He was once Minister to Japan, and signed the treaty of Shimonoseki as well as his relation, whom he also accompanied to Europe in 1896. Since his return to China on that occasion he has been living quietly in retirement at Shanghai. Finally, there are two Chinese of special interest of whom absolutely nothing is known, but whose hereditary claims are indisputable. One is the Marquis Ch'eng, The Contemporary Review.
representative of the Ming dynasty, and as such allowed by the Manchus to sacrifice on the tombs of the dynasty at Nanking. The other is the Duke of Yen, the direct descendant of Confucius, and the possessor of the only hereditary dukedom in China. His mere name raises before us a long vista of possible popular reforms in China; but no doubt he would make the first condition of his co-operation the exclusion of all foreign missionaries. These are, however, idle conjectures or remote contingencies. For the moment the outlook is not promising for any cordial or sincere co-operation on the part of Chinese officials, and the goodwill of even the "friendly" Viceroys of the Yangtse Valley must not be subjected to too severe a strain. Demetrius C. Boulger.
Oh, thou great realm of possibilities,
The strong new wine at work, and thou behind,
C. D. W.
VOL. VIII. 445