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Beizhengji 北征記 (Hou beizheng ji 後北征記)

Aug 16, 2019 © Ulrich Theobald

Beizhengji 北征記 (Hou beizheng ji 後北征記) is a brief account on a military campaign against the Tatars 韃靼 (Mongols)—the "later campaign"—written by the Ming-period 明 (1368-1644) official Yang Rong 楊榮 (1371-1440), original name Zirong 子榮, courtesy name Mianren 勉仁, posthumous title Wenmingong 文敏公, from Jian'an 建安. He was Minister of Works (gongbu shangshu 工部尚書) and Grand Academician (daxueshi 大學士) in the Hall of Literary Profundity (Wenyuange 文淵閣) under Emperor Chengzu 明成祖 (r. 1402-1424).

In 1424, he accompanied the emperor in his last campaign against the Mongol leader Aruγtai (d. 1434, Chinese transcription Alutai 阿魯臺). The book describes extraordinary things which Yang experiences during the travel to the north. His detailed observations must be relied on, because he belonged to the inner circle around Emperor Chengzu. The latter died in Yumuchuan 榆木川 (near modern Dolun 多倫, Inner Mongolia), and his coffin was brought back to Beijing.

The oldest modern typeset print was produced by the Dongfang Study Society (Dongfang Xuehui 東方學會). It is included in the series Liujingkan congshu 六經堪叢書.

Source:
Wu Feng 吳楓, ed. (1987). Jianming Zhongguo guji cidian 簡明中國古籍辭典 (Changchun: Jilin wenshi chubanshe), 343.