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Lidai bingzhi 歷代兵制

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Lidai bingzhi 歷代兵制 "The military systems throughout the ages" is a military treatise written by the Southern Song period 南宋 (1127-1279) scholar Chen Fuliang 陳傅良. It is 8 juan "scrolls" long and describes the military system from the Former Han period 前漢 (206 BCE-8 CE) to the Northern Song 北宋 (960-1126). Detailed information is provided on the recruitment of peasant militias recruited according to the putative well-field system (jingtianzhi 井田制) of the Zhou period 周 (11th cent.-221 BCE), the guards of the capital and the local cavalry and chariot units during the Han period, the garrison militia (fubing 府兵) and cavalry units, as well as the capital guards from the Sui 隋 (581-618) and Tang period 唐 (618-907), and the prefectural armies (xiangbing 廂兵) and the frontier tribal troops (fanbing 蕃兵) from the Northern Wei period 北魏 (386-534). Chen does not only describe the types of troops and the organisation of the military units, but also discusses the coming and going of the different styles of recruitment and defence, rewards and expenses, as well as tactics of fighting. He supports the coherence between the peasantry that served as the main pool for recruitment and to which troops could return when installed in military colonies. During war, the population should not be harrassed, and war should not be limitless. The powers among the commanders are to be clearly defined, and a general is not a dictator. The quality of the troops can, Chen says, only be secured if the soldiers are carefully selected and trained. Otherwise the outcome will be just like the one the Song dynasty had experienced when she had to flee to the south.
The Lidai bingzhi is included in the reprint series Mohai jinhu 墨海金壺, Shoushange congshu 守山閣叢書, Chang'enshushi congshu 長恩書室叢書, and the Siku quanshu 四庫全書.

Source: Zhang Lie 張烈 (1989), "Lidai bingzhi 歷代兵制", in Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Junshi 軍事 (Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe), Vol. 1, p. 686.

January 15, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail
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