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Old October 10th, 2015, 10:53 AM   #71
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Power projection is any exercise of power anywhere, whether it is within your frontier or outside of it. A state with a developed transportation system would have a high degree of projection internally.
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Old October 10th, 2015, 10:57 AM   #72

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Originally Posted by purakjelia View Post
I think the reason why China did not project his power elsewhere around the globe has more to do with cultural factors and mindset rather than military or financial factors. The Ming could project their power if they really wanted to, but the Ming emperor chose not to do so because he doesn't want to see his former subjects build another Ming empire outside of his control.

Zheng He's voyages have already proved that Ming could project their power to foreign lands.
True the underlying potential was there. However notice that Zheng He had to do his voyages with Chinese government backing. The Europeans who voyaged through the world were private companies who were involved with the government but were essentially private enterprises searching for opportunities for entrepreneurial gain.

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I would argue that this type of authoritarian mindset (that the emperor is the son of heaven and everything he says is true) is what ultimately prevented the Chinese from competing with Europeans during the Age of Discovery. Had there been no emperor in China and had China been separated into many smaller kingdoms just like he once was during the Warring States period, things could turn out to be much different.
Yes, but if China was fragmented into many smaller states that would enable individuals to do their own private expeditions. Perhaps.

Last edited by Guaporense; October 10th, 2015 at 11:22 AM.
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Old October 10th, 2015, 11:16 AM   #73

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No they are not equal.
In silver they were about the same: 900 tons in the mid 17th century. By the mid 18th century, France's tax revenues were 1,600 tons while China was 1,200 tons.

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Silver in 17th century China was around 2.3 times more valuable than silver in Europe, the Qing had three times as large of a revenue as France and still 50% greater than France in the 18th century.
2.3 times? How can you make such precise statement for a whole century comparing prices between continents?

It's true that the silver prices of grain in London was usually about twice than prices in coastal China. Grain prices in France were lower than in London though.

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Also, the Qing had an additional source of non-revenue based logistic funding; private merchants accompanying the army as well as grazing. That's why despite numerous wars fought across East and Central Asia, the Qing treasury was always replenished and full, whereas most European states of the time were in debt.
US today is in debt several times the US tax revenues. So by your logic, medieval China was richer than US today.

China didn't have debt in early modern times because their financial system was more primitive than European countries and hence didn't allow for the government to finance expenditures larger than revenues.

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The Mughal revenue on the other hand was over 5 times that of France.
In which terms? In terms of silver it was about 2.5 times larger in terms of grain it was about 4-5 times, however, as Angus Madison pointed out, Mughal tax revenues included rents for the ruling class and hence are not comparable to other states.

It actually shows how primitive the Mughal society was since they didn't separate the State from the upper classes. This lack of separation between poor enforcement of rule of law and poor institutions to protect property and contracts.

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France projected power to just 220,000 sq miles of continental landmass, and around 600,000 sq miles of land overseas. Qing projected its power over 5 million sq miles, there is a huge disparity of 6 times when we are talking about continental projection because the Qing had superior horse resources and a commercialized continental sized economy.
France projected power onto Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Russia and England, among other European countries. All Europe combined whose colonial empires covered most of the world outside of Europe. Hence, France's power was felt over the entire globe (with the exception of East Asia), roughly for 400 million square kilometers of land and sea, about 40 times the geographical span of Chinese political and cultural influence.

Napoleon, in fact, still is technically the closest a man came to being the ruler of the world. Had him defeated Russia and England in the Napoleonic Wars he would be technically in control of 4/5 of the world's surface. It would be also piece of cake for a early 19th century European country to enforce it's power over China or Japan (as demonstrated by the Opium Wars) given the vast technological disparity.

Last edited by Guaporense; October 10th, 2015 at 11:21 AM.
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Old October 11th, 2015, 11:12 AM   #74
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Originally Posted by Guaporense View Post
In silver they were about the same: 900 tons in the mid 17th century. By the mid 18th century, France's tax revenues were 1,600 tons while China was 1,200 tons.
No, mid Qing revenue was not 900 tons and neither was it 1,200 tons in the mid 18th century, we've went over this many times, and its getting really repetitive.
Go back and read Debin Ma's article where you got your figures again; http://ahes.ier.hit-u.ac.jp/ahec_bei...may21_no26.pdf
The figures you culled from Debin Ma disagrees with you if you actually understood it (he was giving an average of the land tax for half a century).
These are the officially registered Qing revenue in silver:

1653: 23,510,000 liangs (taels) = 876 tons of silver
1685: 30,150,000 liangs = 1,124 tons of silver
1725: 35,850,000 liangs = 1,337 tons of silver
1753: 40,690,000 liangs = 1,517 tons of silver
1766: 48,540,000 liangs = 1,810 tons of silver
1791: 43,590,000 liangs = 1,625 tons of silver

However, the revenue figures here only include land tax in silver, with 37,517,000 taels in silver and ~16,697,000 taels worth in grain.
Debin Ma's own estimates on page 52 reveal that the land tax revenue for the Qing in 1753 was only 73.5% of the entire revenue. When we add the Salt tax, Native Customs, Maritime Customs and others the total was 73,793,000 tales, or 2,738 tons of silver.


The increase in silver revenue however, is misleading, since the actual increase in revenue in grain was non-existent. This mean the Qing revenue in the late 17th century was just as high as its revenue in 1753.


If one converts silver to grain, then the Qing tax revenue actually reached its height in the early 18th century, under the reign of the Kangxi and Yong Zheng emperor and not the Qianlong emperor.

1653: 22 million shi(dan)
1685: 44 million shi
1725: 51 million shi
1753: 41 million shi
1766: 42 million shi
1791: 41 million shi


In sum in 1700, the Qing revenue was over three times that of France, whereas the Mughal revenue was over 4.5 times that of France.


Quote:
2.3 times? How can you make such precise statement for a whole century comparing prices between continents?

It's true that the silver prices of grain in London was usually about twice than prices in coastal China. Grain prices in France were lower than in London though.
As shown in the past, Robert Allen estimates consumption baskets for the Yangtze delta only cost 247.3 grams of silver while English consumption baskets cost 579.7 grams. This means 1 g of silver in the Yangtze delta could buy 2.344 times more than 1 g of silver in England.
Considering the degree of market integration, European prices are roughly comparable and so are Chinese prices. As for France having lower price than England, cite your source.



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US today is in debt several times the US tax revenues. So by your logic, medieval China was richer than US today.
I didn't say a state in debt is poorer, I said a state not in debt is self reliant, stop making silly strawmans.
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China didn't have debt in early modern times because their financial system was more primitive than European countries and hence didn't allow for the government to finance expenditures larger than revenues.
Except there were plenty of cases where imperial China was financing expenditures much larger than revenues. You just haven't done enough homework. The Jinchuan campaign costed over 70,000,000 taels of silver. In the Yuan period, we hear the annual expenditure more than twice as much as the revenue in the Yuan Shi: 所入曾不及半,而去岁所支,钞至千万锭,粮三百万石。”
"The revenue was not even half, but last year the expenditure was as much as 10 million Ding, and 3 million Dan of grain."

Furthermore, the Qing was able to generate additional sources of money by selling examination degrees to merchants for private contribution; I have yet to see the equivalent in European countries.

Quote:
In which terms? In terms of silver it was about 2.5 times larger in terms of grain it was about 4-5 times, however, as Angus Madison pointed out, Mughal tax revenues included rents for the ruling class and hence are not comparable to other states.
No.
Edward Thomas' detailed estimate for Mughal revenue shows that the state received 13,802356030 dams or 345,058,900 rupees, which is around 3,890 tons of silver, and 386,346,802 rupees in 1687 or over 4,350 tons. This is 4.5 times the revenue of France in silver alone.

Page 35: https://books.google.es/books?id=fVM...venues&f=false




Quote:
It actually shows how primitive the Mughal society was since they didn't separate the State from the upper classes. This lack of separation between poor enforcement of rule of law and poor institutions to protect property and contracts.
If you do not have the precise data, stop making farfetched conjectures. Edward Thomas explicitly noted the 345,058,900 rupees or near 3900 tons of silver was a state revenue.



Quote:
France projected power onto Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Russia and England, among other European countries. All Europe combined whose colonial empires covered most of the world outside of Europe. Hence, France's power was felt over the entire globe (with the exception of East Asia), roughly for 400 million square kilometers of land and sea, about 40 times the geographical span of Chinese political and cultural influence.
We are talking about 18th century France, not Napoleonic France. I don't think you understand how primitive European logistic systems were in the 18th century; there were no independent logistic train regiments and armies can barely send its armies a few hundred KM beyond its borders without resorting to pillage. In fact "by the 18th century, few countries, except for the French and Prussians, had adopted a suitable fodder magazine system." ("The logistics of war, a historical perspective" p.176) This meant most European armies can only feed itself when it marched along settlements. Even Napoleon, who devised the first independent train regiments, had to live off of the countryside and failed in Spain when he could not attain grain from pillaging and his Russian campaign suffered when he cannot find fodder for his horses. Again to quote Peter Perdue
"Qing commanders made careful efforts to spare the local population the burdens of military supply, either by having soldiers carry their rations with them, or by giving them money to buy grain at market prices. The real victory of early Qing rulers was their ability to draw off the resources of a rapidly commercializing economy to serve national defense needs without inflicting excessive damage on the rural economy."

"Napoleon's Russian campaign was carefully planned. But his biggest problem was to provide fodder for his 250,000 horses."

Whereas "Rations for Qing troops, by these measures seem small;...Mongolian and Manchu soldiers in the Chinese army could get a substantial caloric supply from steppe products like mare's milk, horse's blood, horsemeat, and marmots. Most important the enoumous grasslands of Mongolia were more than adequate to feed the Qing army's horses. ...In Western Europe seven acres of green fodder could feed one horse for a year, much like North China. In any case, the 1.5 million sq km of mongolian grasslands, which supported 1.15 million horses in 1918, could potentially provide grazing lands for a very large number of horses. Western Europe clearly had no such large pasture lands, and this was the major limitation on its armies's mobility."


According to the Qing Shilu, in the Zunghar campaign of 1757, the military commissioner of Shanxi and Gansu suggested to equip every 100 Qing soldiers with 75 muskets (a mixture of arquebus and flintlock), 20 bows, and 5 cannoneers, with one Wei Yuan cannon (2 pounders). The pacifying force was eventually 30,000 in size with 150,000 horses (each soldier had 5 mounts and capable of carrying 80 days of ration by themselves because of these mounts, an infantry typically carry only 3 days of ration by themselves).
This army is arguably better equipped than contemporary European armies of the period, as it had 10 two pounder cannons per 1,000 soldiers compared to only 2-3 three pounders in both the English and Prussian armies under Frederick. It might not have as much flintlocks, but it dwarfed anything the Europeans had logistically with each soldiers, even the infantry having 5 horses, capable of providing some 20 times the ration contemporary western infantry based forces could carry in non-mountainous terrain.

Quote:
Napoleon, in fact, still is technically the closest a man came to being the ruler of the world. Had him defeated Russia and England in the Napoleonic Wars he would be technically in control of 4/5 of the world's surface. It would be also piece of cake for a early 19th century European country to enforce it's power over China or Japan (as demonstrated by the Opium Wars) given the vast technological disparity.
If. If wishes were horses beggars would ride. Napoleon's cause was probably doomed.

Britain’s most indispensable key to Bonaparte’s destruction were financial and naval supremacy. Britain achieved a higher level of mobilisation than France, and the British naval budget alone was bigger than the French military budget as a whole. From the more globally oriented British perspective, Trafalgar was probably more important than Waterloo, even if Pitt the Younger might have got a little ahead of himself when he declared: ‘England has saved herself by her exertions and will, as I trust, save Europe by her example.’
Furthermore, England did not conquer most of India until the 1820s. Even had Napoleon conquered England, which is an extremely unlikely scenario to begin with, India was well beyond his reach and so was Russia. One might as well begin the fictive imagination what might have happened had the Qing invaded Siberia in the 18th century (a much more plausible scenario), where Russian garrisons were small, and would have became as big as the Mongol Empire at its height with half of the world's population under its supervision (and it was much darn closer than Napoleon ever dreamed of as the Qing did in fact control near 40% of the world's population by the end of the 18th century and that is not including all of its vassal states).
As for the Opium war, the decisive weapon, the gunboat Nemesis was not invented until 1836, and all it really enforced was an indemnity and the opening of 5 trade ports. It was the Taiping rebellion and the subsequent arrow war which took advantage of the rebellion that allowed the French and British to press real unequal demands (large tracts of sphere of influence wasn't even present until 1900).

Last edited by heavenlykaghan; October 11th, 2015 at 12:51 PM.
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Old October 12th, 2015, 11:03 AM   #75
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Furthermore, the Qing was able to generate additional sources of money by selling examination degrees to merchants for private contribution; I have yet to see the equivalent in European countries.
Whenever King of France creates an office, God immediately creates a fool who will purchase it.
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Old October 12th, 2015, 01:57 PM   #76

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Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
Whenever King of France creates an office, God immediately creates a fool who will purchase it.
And also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indulg...edieval_abuses
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Old October 12th, 2015, 02:07 PM   #77
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However, examination degrees aren't offices, and it is relevant here because it is especially given out to merchants, who had lower social standing but had lots of money and often traveled with the army.
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Old October 12th, 2015, 02:12 PM   #78

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So it's basically a matter of prestige and nothing else? (considering merchants can't hold offices). What other advantage does it offer, or is it a tax on vain people?
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Old October 12th, 2015, 03:18 PM   #79
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Degrees opens you up for spots in the office, but it doesn't guarantee you an office. It's like a PhD degree, but the degree itself doesn't guarantee you a job. There are way more degree holders than there are offices so it was largely a matter of prestige (there are also certain social benefits however).
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Old October 12th, 2015, 08:03 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by heavenlykaghan View Post
It's like a PhD degree, but the degree itself doesn't guarantee you a job. There are way more degree holders than there are offices so it was largely a matter of prestige (there are also certain social benefits however).
Rather say, more degree holders than offices suitable for prestige of a degree holder.
But degree was not merely prestige and social benefits. It carried definite legal and fiscal benefits as well. Like significant tax exemptions.
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