Taiwan Struggling for Independence:
A Historical Perspective

By Tsai Pai-chuan and Chi-ming Ng


Taiwan As a Base for Recovering the Defunct Ming Dynasty (1662-83)

  1. Government in Exile

    @ The Manchu (Tartars), after having occupied Beijing, the capital of the Ming Dynasty in l644, formally established the Ching Dynasty (1644-1912) and declared Beijing as their capital. Immediately, they moved their forces southward to exterminate other Chinese reactionary forces.

    @A Chinese prince with a Japanese mother, Cheng Chen-kung, or "Koxinga" in Fukienese, escaped from the Fukien Province of China to take refuge in Taiwan and then set up a Ming regime in exile there, as Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek of the Nationalist China did in l949.

  2. Tungnin Kingdom

    @Cheng Chen-kung seized "Zeelandia" and forced the Dutch VOC to surrender and flee Taiwan in February l662. He changed the name "Zeelandia" into "Tungtu Mingkin," or literally "the east capital of the Ming Dynasty," vowing to recover China from the Manchu's yoke, but prematurely died only one month later. dutch

    @Cheng Ching, his son (r. 1662-81), changed the name "Tungtu Mingkin" into "Tungnin," or literally "oriental peace" in l664 after having withdrawn his defeated troops from the Province of Fukien. Upon completing the change, Cheng Ching wrote the Ching Court, declaring that he had "established a kingdom at Tungnin" and self-proclaimed as the "Lord of the Tungnin Kingdom." Doubtless to say, he implied to invite the Ching Court to recognize his kingdom, though to no avail. But ten years later he unwisely got involved in a rebellion in China and caused his Tungnin Kingdom to be doomed.

  3. Failed Recovery of the Defunct Ming Dynasty (1674-80)

    @ Three governors general of the former Ming Dynasty formed an alliance to revolt against the Ching Dynasty in 1674. At their request, Cheng Ching led his troops to attack the Ching Dynasty but ended in a fiasco and retreated to Taiwan in l680. He died next year.

    @Cheng Keh-shuan, his 12-year-old son, succeeded him, but eventually surrendered to the invading troops of the Ching Dynasty headed by Shih Lang in l683. From then on, both Taiwan and China were all placed under the Manchu's rule.


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