A Dragon's Head and a Serpent's Tail: Ming China and the by Kenneth M. Swope

By Kenneth M. Swope

The invasion of Korea through eastern troops in may possibly of 1592 used to be no traditional army excursion: it used to be one of many decisive occasions in Asian background and the main tragic for the Korean peninsula until eventually the mid-twentieth century. eastern overlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi expected conquering Korea, Ming China, and finally all of Asia; yet Korea’s entice China’s Emperor Wanli for information caused a six-year warfare related to millions of squaddies and encompassing the entire area. For Japan, the conflict was once “a dragon’s head by means of a serpent’s tail”: a magnificent starting without actual ending.

Kenneth M. Swope has undertaken the 1st full-length scholarly examine in English of this significant clash. Drawing on Korean, jap, and particularly chinese language assets, he corrects the Japan-centered viewpoint of earlier bills and depicts Wanli no longer because the self-indulgent ruler of acquired interpretations yet relatively one actively engaged in army affairs—and involved specially with rescuing China’s shopper country of Korea. He places the Ming in a extra full of life gentle, detailing chinese language siege struggle, the advance and deployment of cutting edge army applied sciences, and the naval battles that marked the climax of the struggle. He additionally explains the war’s repercussions outdoors the army sphere—particularly the dynamics of intraregional international relations in the shadow of the chinese language tributary system.

What Swope calls the 1st nice East Asian warfare marked either the emergence of Japan’s wish to expand its sphere of impression to the chinese language mainland and an army revival of China’s dedication to protecting its pursuits in Northeast Asia. Swope’s account bargains new perception not just into the background of war in Asia but additionally right into a clash that reverberates in diplomacy to this day.

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