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Chinese Literature
Bingjing leibian 兵鏡類編 "Categorized Mirror of Military Matters"


The Bingjing leibian 兵鏡類編 "Categorized mirror of military matters" is a military treatise written by the late Qing period 清 (1644-1911) scholar Li Rui 李蕊. It is 40 juan "scrolls" long. The author collected a vast amount of knowledge on military history from the official dynastic histories and arranged it in 48 chapters, like generals, planning, strategy, selection of troops, training, reconnaisance, defense and attack. A print from the Guangxu reign 光緒 (1875-1908) has survived. There are in total 1,471 themes covered. Li Rui critically comments cases in history, but also provides suggestions for modern military administration and strategy. His most important tactic to defend China is the erection of fortifications along the coast and in all important spots along river estuaries, in order to obstruct any penetration by inimical troops. He prefers warfare on land to naval warfare, and if necessary, an enemy has to be lured to land on China's soil, to be defeated there by excellently trained and equipped troops.

Source: Chen Bingcai 陳秉才 (1989). "Bingjing leibian 兵鏡類編", in: Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Junshi 軍事, vol. 1, p. 49. Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe.

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January 15, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail