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Open Access Broken Passage to the Summit: Nayancheng’s Botched Mission in the White Lotus War

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Broken Passage to the Summit: Nayancheng’s Botched Mission in the White Lotus War

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Chapter Summary

This chapter sheds light on the story of an imperial commissioner in Qing China. In 1799, a Manchu aristocrat, Nayancheng, was appointed as a Special Imperial Commissioner to supervise the suppression campaign against a sectarian rebellion, the White Lotus Rebellion. Not only was he expected to inject new energy into the enervated campaign and promote the reform at the warfront, but it was also anticipated that he would prove his own worthiness so that he could be named to lead the Grand Council, the Qing monarch's key advisory body. Nevertheless, Nayancheng's mission ended in failure, with severe consequences for him as well as for the central government. Humiliated and stripped of almost all his numerous titles, Nayancheng fell so precipitously that he had to strive the rest of his life to re-prove himself but received only more denunciation and disgrace.

Keywords: Grand Council; Nayancheng's mission; Qing China; White Lotus Rebellion



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