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B Y: R O B I N P E A R C E
By the 1830’s, British merchants were selling opium to the Chinese. Even though it
was illegal in Britain.
• By the 1800’s western countries started to spread their influence to East Asia.
The Trade Issue
• China rulers established strict limits on foreign traders only letting them trade
around Guangzhou in southern China. This allowed China to export more than
they imported.
• Westerns had a Trade Deficit with China buying more from China then they sold to
• In 1796 Britain requested more trading rights only to be refused by the emperor
The Opium War
• China bought large quantities of opium from British merchants.
• China paid large amounts of silver for the opium interrupting the Chinese
• China made opium illegal and started executing drug dealers. The British refused
to stop selling the opium.
• In 1839 Chinese warships attacked the British merchant ships.
This triggered what was called the Opium war.
• The British easily defeated the Chinese with their outdated
Unequal Treaties
• Treaty of Nanjing ended the Opium War.
– Britain forced China to sign it. It gave Britain Hong Kong and it forced
the Chinese to pay a huge indemnity or payment for losses in the war.
– Britain made the Chinese give the British citizens in China the right to
live under their own laws and be tried in their courts.
– China was forced to build 5 ports open to foreign trade
– Lastly, whatever privileges China gave to another nation they HAD to
give to Britain.
The Taiping Rebellion
• Peasants revolted from 1850-1864 as a result of misery and poverty. It was
led by Hong Xiuquan who was influenced by the teachings of Christian
• Hong Xiuquan wanted:
– Land Reforms
– Community ownership of property
– Equality of men and woman
– Strict morality
– However, he mostly wanted an END TO THE DESPISED QING DYNASTY
• The Taiping Rebellion was eventually crushed by regional
governors and generals.
Effects of The Taiping Rebellion
• 20 to 30 million people died.
• The lower Yangzi basin was basically destroyed.
• The Qing dynasty was almost toppled and as an effect it
had to share its power with regional commanders who had
rebuilt their region and power base.
• Russia seized lands along the Amur River.
Reform Efforts
• In the 1860’s, reformers launched the “self-strengthening
movement” which involved the setting up of: factories to
make modern weapons, shipyards, railroads, and the
mining and light industry.
• China went to war with Japan and was humiliated. This
resulted in many western powers and Japan taking land
from China.
• In 1898, a young emperor, Guang Xu took over and started
the Hundred Days of Reform in his attempt to modernize
• Conservatives overthrew Guang Xu and Ci Xi retook
Modern Chinese Factory
The Empire Crumbles
• The Boxer Uprising:
– In 1899, a group of Chinese formed a secret society called
the Harmonious Fists. Their goal was to expel the foreign
powers. They attacked foreign communities across China.
– The westerners and Japan organized a multinational force
and crushed the rebellion.
– As a result of the Boxer uprising China was forced to except
terms by the westerners and Japan. China also was forced
to modernize. This led to China exploding economically.
– By the early 1900’s China introduced a constitutional
Sun Yixian
• Sun was a passionate spokesman for a Chinese republic.
• In the early 1900’s he organized the revolutionary alliance.
• His goals were to free china from foreign control, the next was
to establish a democracy in China, and the last was economic
security for all Chinese.
• He was named president of the new Chinese Republic on
January 1912 after the old empress Ci Xi died.