Chinese : Xiyu wenjian lu

Qishiyi, 七十一, active 1754-1777


<p style='text-align: justify;'>This is an account of imperial expansion under the Qing. Written by the Manchu official and frontiersman Qishiyi (fl. 1754-1777; jinshi 進士 degree 1754), it describes various parts of Eurasia, based on the author’s experience as someone living at the expanding frontier. This book is known for the depth and detail in which it reports on the great cities of Central Eurasia and the customs of people such as the Kazakhs, Kirghiz, Hindustanis, Kashmiris, Russians, and Ottoman Turks.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'> In particular, Qishiyi narrates the struggle for succession to the Dzungar Khanate after its destruction by Qing troops and recounts the Qing wars against the last remaining Dzungar leaders, such as Amursana (1723-1757). Note that when Qishiyi received his jinshi degree in 1754, the long Dzungar-Qing Wars (1687-1757) were just coming to an end.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'> The work contains several maps, showing Qing China’s northwestern borderlands and newly conquered areas (many mapped places are located in today’s Xinjiang). Maps depict geographical features (e.g. shamo 沙漠 ‘desert’), fortifications (e.g. Chijin bao 赤金堡 ‘Pure Gold Wall’, counties (e.g. Yumen xian 玉門縣 ‘Yumen County’), and towns (e.g. Hami 哈密).</p>

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