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Dong-Xiyang kao 東西洋考

The Four Categories of Literature
Dong-Xiyang kao 東西洋考 "On the [countries] in the Eastern and Western Oceans" is a report on countries in East and Southeast Asia from the Ming period 明 (1368-1644). It was written by Zhang Xie 張燮 (1574-1640), a scholar who never aspired an office but dedicated his life the study of geography and history. His book was only finished after Wang Qizong 王起宗, subprefectural magistrate of Zhangzhou 漳州, asked him to complete this work because it was important for Chinese officials' knowledge of the economic situations in the overseas countries. The importance of Zhang's 12 juan "scrolls" long book lies not only in his desciption of foreign countries but that he gives precise information about taxes and tributes coming in from these countries through the overseas trade. The countries described are located in the modern countries of Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Of special interest is the description of the Chinese Overseas' communities and the Spanish settlements in the region.
There is a printing preserved from the late Ming period which has been republished in 1981 by the Zhonghua shuju press 中華書局 in the series Zhong-wai jiaotong shiji congkan 中外交通史籍叢刊.

1-4 西洋列國考 Xiyang lieguo kao Countries in the Western Ocean [southern part of the South China Sea]
5 東洋列國考 Dongyang lieguo kao Countries in the Eastern Ocean [eastern part of the South China Sea]
6 外紀 Waiji Travels abroad
7 餉稅 Xiangshui Import taxes and their administration
8 稅璫 Shuidang (Beschreibt die ausbeuterische Art eines Zollbeamten, Steuern einzunehmen.)
9 舟師 Zhouyi Fleets and navigation
10-11 藝文 Yishu [The region in ancient] literary sources
12 逸事 Yishi [The region in ancient] historiographical sources

Source: Zhou Shaoquan 周少泉 (1992), "Dong-Xiyang kao 東西洋考", in Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Zhongguo lishi 中國歷史 (Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe), Vol. 2, p. 184.

September 15, 2010 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail
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