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Sources: Qing Reference Works

July 23, 2010

Teng, Ssu-yü and Knight Biggerstaff. An annotated bibliography of selected Chinese reference works. 3d ed, Harvard-Yenching Institute studies 2. Cambridge, Mass.,: Harvard University Press, 1971.

This volume provides detailed annotations for eight categories of reference works: bibliographies, encyclopedias, dictionaries, geographical works, biographical works, tables, yearbooks, and indexes. Includes both Chinese and Japanese publications. This work is particularly helpful in providing information on the compilation of the work discussed as well as its relation to complementary works.

Wilkinson, Endymion Porter. The history of imperial China; a research guide, Harvard East Asian monographs 49. Cambridge, Mass.,: East Asian Research Center Harvard University; distributed by Harvard University Press, 1973.

With regards to Qing documents, Wilkinson has a very useful section on Chinese historical writing, which gives a historical overview of the official sources as well as an outline of their contents and areas of specialization.

Fairbank, John King. Ch’ing documents, an introductory syllabus. 3d [rev. and enl.] ed, Harvard East Asian monographs 8. Cambridge, Mass.,: East Asian Research Center Harvard University; distributed by Harvard University Press, 1970.

This book is an essential reference work for the student of Qing history. In addition to providing assistance with regards to the layout and grammar of official documents, Fairbank also gives a bibliographic listing of the official collections available in print including a brief history of the work and an outline of its contents.

Kuhn, Philip A., John King Fairbank, Beatrice S. Bartlett, and Yung-chen Chiang. Reading documents: the rebellion of Chung Jen-chieh, Introduction to Ch’ing documents; pt. 1. Cambridge: Harvard University John King Fairbank Center for East Asian Research, 1986.

This book may be considered the heir to Fairbank’s Ch’ing documents. It introduces the scholar to Qing sources via a survey of the rebellion of Zhong Renjie. The authors also provide an updated (and annotated) list of official collections in print, and useful information of Qing archival documents and their format.

Modern Chinese History Project (University of Washington), Chung-li Chang, and Stanley Spector. Guide to the memorials of seven leading officials of nineteenth-century China, University of Washington publications on Asia. Seattle,: University of Washington Press, 1955.

A useful reference for the scholar interested late Qing statecraft. Gives date of memorial, author, source, and a summary of its content for the major Tongzhi-Guangxu era statesmen: Zeng Guofan, Zuo Zongtang, Li Hongzhang etc.

Zhongguo di 1 lishi dang’an guan, and Gugong bowuyuan (China), Ming Qing dang’an bu. 中国第一历史档案馆, 故宫博物院明清档案部. Qing dai dang’an shiliao congbian. Beijing: Zhonghua shuju, 1978.

An irregular periodical on Qing archival documents from the No.1 Historical Archives in Beijing. Each issue is arranged by topic with brief annotations for the materials covered. Also included are explanations of special terms,as well as a general introduction to the Qing archives.

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