Tseng Kuo-fan

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Tseng Kuo-fan

Tseng Kuo-fan (dzŭng gwô-fän), 1811–72, Chinese general and statesman of the Ch'ing dynasty. He organized (1853) the Hunan army, the first of the great regional armies that were raised to suppress the Taiping Rebellion. Appointed governor-general of Jiangsu, Anhui, and Jiangxi provs. (1860), Tseng coordinated the military campaign that crushed the Taiping main forces and took the rebel capital at Nanjing in 1864. He advocated a policy of conciliation with the Western powers and military self-strengthening. Under his sponsorship the Jiangnan Arsenal was established at Shanghai in 1865. In addition to producing the first modern weapons and ships, the arsenal's translation bureau played a major role in introducing Western technology and thought to China. Tseng was appointed a grand secretary (1867) and was made (1868) governor-general of Zhili (Hebei) prov. With the death of Tseng and the involvement of Tso Tsung-t'ang in suppressing the Muslim rebellion in NW China, Li Hung-chang became the leader of the self-strengthening movement.

See study by W. J. Hail (1927, repr. 1964).

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