The Government of China (1644-1911)

By Pao Chao Hsieh | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XII
TERRITORIAL1 GOVERNMENT

Organizations like the six departments, five courts, the provincial administration described in the preceding chapters, related only to the eighteen provinces in China Proper, the Province of Sinkiang, (after 1884) the Eastern Three Provinces, (after 1907) and Formosa, (before its cession to Japan in 1895) but had nothing to do with the governments of Mongolia, Tibet, and Chinese Turkestan, although these

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1
Political sub-divisions like Mongolia, Tibet and Chinese Turkestan are usually called "dependencies" or "colonies." Neither of these terms is a very appropriate translation of the Chinese term "Fan" which means frontiers. Of the different kinds of political sub-divisions, these places most resemble the "Territories" of the United States. The Chinese government always ruled over them with an aim of making them regular provinces. The tendency was especially strong during the latter part of the dynasty. Part of the former Chinese Turkestan became the Province of Sinkiang in 1884. The provinces of Kirin and Heilungkiang had the government and status of a territory until 1907. Other places were either designed to become provinces or to be more governed as time went on. The central government did make part of the territories prefectures or districts of some provinces by putting the authority of the territorial government under the supervision of a governor or viceroy; to wit, "The three eastern leagues of Inner Mongolia have already been almost subordinated to the provincial administration of Chihli, (the Chosotu League, part of the Chao Uda League, to the prefectures of Cheng Te Fu, and Chao Yang Fu) and Feng Tien (the Cherim League, part of the Chao Uda League to the prefecture of Tao Nan Fu, entirely, and the Western part of the prefectures of Chang Chun Fu, Chang Tu Fu and Hsin Min Fu)" ( Brunnert and Hagelstrom, Present Day Political Organization of China, p. 458).

Secondly, they were much more governed than other dependencies and protectorates; in fact, some of them were more governed than the provinces. The chief reason for giving it a special form of government was because of tradition and environment.

For these two reasons, the term territory is used here.

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