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Chinese Literature
Huihuaji 灰畫集 "Collection on Draft Maps"

The Huihuaji 灰畫集 "Collection on draft maps" is a book on military geography written by the Qing period 清 (1644-1911) scholar Li Peixun 李培訓. The book is 20 juan "scrolls" long and was finished in 1726. The title of the book denotes the traditional custom of drafting maps during campaigns. The downfall of the Ming dynasty 明 (1368-1644) was a reason to write a book about the importance of geography for warfare. With many examples from history, Li Pei explains the reasons for victory and defeat by anaysing the factor of topography. He stresses the importance of the regions of Shaanxi and Shandong for the heartland in the Yellow River basin and the relation between the region of northern Anhui and Jiangsu with the Yangtze valley. A capital has to be protected with several layers of garrisons stretching over vast distances. Garrisons in northern Shaanxi, Liaoning and Shandong are thus able to protect Beijing. Li Pei is aware of the danger which the open flank to the west poses, and thus anticipates the western campaigns during the Kangxi 康熙 (1662-1722) and Qianlong 乾隆 (1736-1795) reigns. He also suggests planting a belt of forests in the northwest, in order to obstruct the cavalry armies of the nomad tribes. The author relies on a large amount of older treatises, especially the Dushi fangyu jiyao 讀史方輿紀要, Wenwuku 文武庫, Juzhupian 居諸篇 and Qinbian jilüe 秦邊紀略.
There is an edition in ten volumes from the Republican period (1911-1949) of an unclear date, published by an institution called Xunlian zongjian bianju ju 訓練總監編輯局.

Source: Jin Yi 金毅 (1989). "Huihuaji 灰畫集", in: Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Junshi 軍事, vol. 1, p. 412. Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe.

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January 15, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail