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The Boxer Rebellion

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Alex Mitchell

on 18 July 2013

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Transcript of The Boxer Rebellion

The Boxer rebellion
Yi Ho Tuan
Righteous Harmony Fists
"The Boxers"
Founded in Northern Coastal Province of Shandong
Stemmed from the Li sect of the Ba Gua religious group
Organised as a movement for the first time in 1897
known as 'Boxers"
practiced a form of shadow boxing
People who had lost their livelihoods due to floods and opium wars
Poorly paid workers under the command of foreign authority
Such as farmers, peasants and industry workers
Those who blamed European settlers, Christian missionaries, Christian Chinese and foreign influences for their grievances
believed themselves to be invulnerable
Foreign power in their country was the source of their problems
Foreign religions overthrew morality and inflamed men to do evil
Gods were now stirred up against them and Heavens legions had been sent to exterminate the foreign devils
Which is the reasons for the ongoing droughts, wars and poverty
Drive all foreigners out of China, particularly those who had received privilege in China
Remove their influences
Destruction of Roman catholic priests and converts
The beginnings of rebellion
Shandong province was under German influence and control, as was the Chinese rail lines, coal mines and factories
Foreign powers profited immensely from these resources but the local Chinese lived in poverty
Boxers killed all foreigners within area (1897)
Chanted “Death to foreigners”
Increased supporters and began massacring missionaries and their families in the towns, cities and remote villages
Spread to capital of Peking 1900
Boxers were continually gaining supporters in all provinces they rampaged
Originally against the Empress Dowager as they viewed her female dominance as a threat
British, French, German, American, Japanese, Russian and Italian diplomats called on Chinese government for protection
Empress CiXi told the diplomats her troops would destroy the rebellion
However nothing happened as the empress had other motives
International forces alerted to threat and expeditionary military forces assembled
Early Response's to the rebellion
By Udo Keppler for Puck magazine
August 8th 1900
Western and European citizens
“The First Duty. Civilization (to China) - That dragon must be killed before our troubles can be adjusted. If you don't do it, I shall have to."
To convey Western and European powers as strong and commanding in the face of weak China
Biased source as it is was created and published in New York so it shows the foreign perspective of the Boxer Rebellion
"If you don't, I shall"
Empress Dowager CiXi and Emperor Gaungxu
Empress Dowager remained a strong influential figure when her nephew came of age
Held most of power behind the scenes  her son was only the public figure head
Saw that boxers would weaken foreign missionary, economic and military power
Used this to promote her own motives
1900 supported the boxers and became allies
Controlled the boxers through ministers
Message sent by Empress CiXi to the Chinese Provinces
"The present situation is becoming daily more difficult. The various Powers cast upon us looks of tiger-like voracity, hustling each other to be first to seize our innermost territories. . . . Should the strong enemies become aggressive and press us to consent to things we can never accept, we have no alternative but to rely upon the justice of our cause. . . . If our . . . hundreds of millions of inhabitants . . . would prove their loyalty to their emperor and love of their country, what is there to fear from any invader? Let us not think about making peace."

Height of the rebellion
Breach of Peking
June 5th 1900 Boxers sever railroad lines isolating Peking
German ambassador approached the palace to protest but was murdered by boxers
Europeans and Westerners gathered in the british legation for saftey
July-August 1900 Legation breached (diplomat quarter in city)
Boxers held the legation for 55 days
International forces finally dispatched after over a month without news from the diplomats
66 dead, 150 wounded, international community in uproar
Map of the defences of the legations quarters in Peking in 1900
Published in the book Siege Days 1903
Legation floor plan
refugees who had fled from the boxers in Tientsin
Catholic Chinese defending their Church
Eye Witness account from American soldier
"advanced in a solid mass and carried standards of red and white cloth. Their yells were deafening, while the roar of gongs, drums and horns sounded like thunder. . . . They waved their swords and stamped on the ground with their feet. They wore red turbans, sashes, and garters over blue cloth. [When] they were only twenty yards from our gate, . . . three volleys from the rifles of our sailors left more than fifty dead upon the ground."
Aftermath and atrocities committed by the International forces
Empress Dowager and her family fled whilst the palace was being looted
Peking and many other towns and cities were looted as punishment
Boxers captured and publicly beheaded
Russia attempted to capture many Chinese cities for themselves such as Shandong and Manchuria and brutally murdered civilians who tried to flee as well as burning their land
Chinese towns and cities were vigorously looted
Women raped and mutilated by soldiers
events described by media as "a carnival of loot" and “an orgy of looting"
Quotes from American Lieutenant Anda Chaffee
“It is safe to say that where one real Boxer has been killed... fifty harmless coolies or laborers on the farms, including not a few women and children, have been slain.”
"[t]he conduct of the Russian soldiers is atrocious, the French are not much better, and the Japanese are looting and burning without mercy"
The effects of the Boxer Rebellion
Empress allowed to return to Peking without punishment
Qing dynasty severely weakened
already poverty stricken China forced to pay $450 million in compensation to international forces
European forces re - established their authority over Chinese
international ‘Open door’ policy expanded and allowed foreign powers access to China’s market
"China - the cake of kings and......of Emperors"
By Alex and Becci
Significance of the Boxer rebellion
Ended The Qing Dynasty and Imperial system and therefore Manchu rule in China

ultimate failure did result in some success in which it influenced the creation of a 'Peace Protocol' September 7th 1901
Reignited Chinese national pride and nationalism
influenced the formation of secret societies such as Tongmenghui who worked to actively overthrow the Manchu rulers who had been proven incapable of defending China
Chinese nationalists adopted a new aim to establish a modern Chinese Republic
Modernized China as a nation
Reforms led by Empress CiXi aimed at slavaging what was left of the Qing Dynasty and strengthened the power of the general administration
New national education system
New universities and reconstructed educational establishments
Curriculum included modern Western subjects
Modeled after Japanese system and many students sent to Japan to study
Influenced Chinese Imperial court to set up a constitution
Help build solidarity between Manchu rulers and people strengthen nation
Supposed to come into effect 1917
Qing Dynasty already demised
Reformation of local administrative system and military served to increase independence
Significance continued
June-August 1900
September 1900-1902
The Boxers Rebel
Young men in Shandong form Righteous Fist groups, practicing martial arts and traditional spiritualism
June 11-Sept. 21Hundred Days Reform, Emperor Guangxu tries to quickly modernize China
Sept. 21 On the verge of handing over sovereignty to Japan, Guangxu is stopped and goes into internal exile. Empress Dowager Cixi rules in his name.
Siege of legations
• June 21th Empress Dowager Cixi declares war against the foreign powers
• June 22-23, 1900: Chinese set fire to parts of Legation district; priceless Hanlin Academy library burns
• July 13-14th Also 120 km outside Peking, Battle of Tientsin (Tianjin); Eight-Nations relief force besieges Boxer-held city, 550 Boxers and 250 foreigners killed. Foreign troops rampage through city afterwards, looting, raping and killing civilians
• July 17th Eight-Nations relief force lands on coast, begins march to Peking
• July 17th Qing government declares cease-fire on legations
• August 13th Chinese end cease-fire, bombard legations as foreign "rescue" force approaches capital
• August 14th Relief force lifts siege on legations, forgets to relieve besieged Catholic North Cathedral until August 16
• August 15th Empress Dowager Cixi and Emperor Guangxu escape Forbidden City dressed as peasants, go on "inspection tour" to ancient capital of Xi'an (formerly Chang'an) in Shaanxi Province

Reaching Peking
Jan. Empress Dowager Cixi rescinds condemnation of Boxers, issues letter of support
Jan-May Boxers storm through countryside, burning churches, killing missionaries and converts
May 30 British Minister Claude MacDonald requests defense force for Beijing foreign legations; Chinese allow 400 troops from eight nations into capital
• Sept. 7, 1900: Qing officials sign "Boxer Protocol," agree to pay huge war reparations over 40 years
• Sept. 21, 1900: Russian troops seize Jilin and occupy Manchuria, moves that will spark 1904-05 Russo-Japanese War
• Jan. 1902: Empress Dowager Cixi and Emperor Guangxu return to Peking from Xi'an and resume control of government
• 1905: Empress Dowager Cixi abolishes imperial examination system for training bureaucrats in favor of western-style university system, part of an attempt at sweeping modernization
• Nov. 14-15, 1908: Emperor Guangxu dies of arsenic poisoning, followed the next day by Empress Dowager Cixi
• Feb. 12, 1912: Qing Dynasty falls to Sun Yat-sen; formal abdication by Last Emperor Puyi

June 1900
13th First Boxer appears in Peking's Legation (diplomatic) Quarter
13th Pro-Boxer General Dong Fuxian's troops kill Japanese diplomat Sugiyama Akira
14th Thousands of angry Boxers storm Peking and burn Christian churches
16th Empress Dowager Cixi and Emperor Guangxu hold council meeting, decide to fully support Boxers
19th Qing government sends messengers to offer foreign legation members safe passage out of Peking; instead, the foreigners shoot the messengers dead
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