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0043 Innermost Asia : vol.2
Innermost Asia : vol.2 / Page 43 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000187
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corresponding design that in 89 B. c. a force, composed of troops from Lou-lan, Wei-hsü (Korla), Wei-li (Konche-Tikenlik) and other feudatory states,loa was sent under Chinese leadership against Chü-shih, in order to create a diversion in support of operations undertaken from the side of the Su-chou marches against the Huns on the Tien-shan.11 The king of Chü-shih was besieged and surrendered, but no permanent submission of the territory ensued ; for towards the close of the Emperor Chao-ti's reign (86-74 B. c.) we are told that Chü-shih had allied itself with the Huns, who sent there a cavalry force to form a colony. Though this Hun force retired when a Chinese army in 73 B. c. prepared to attack Chü-shih, the relations of its chief with the dangerous neighbours in the north continued for some years longer, threatening to cut off the Chinese from their allies, the great Wu-sun tribe north of the Tien-shan.12 In 68 B. c., however, a vigorous effort was made from the newly formed Chinese military encampment at Ch`ü-li, on the Tarim, with the help of auxiliaries from the feudatory states of the Tarim basin, and this, after the capture of Chiao-ho (Y5.r-khoto) in the same year, led to the submission of the king of Chü-shih in 67 B. c. A fresh threat from the side of the Huns was met by a strengthening of the Chinese forces, and finally, after the king, whom the Huns supported, had retreated eastwards with a portion of his people, a Chinese military colony was established in the territory.13 The Chinese general Chêng Chi

rtt , to whose energy and powers of organization these successes had been due, completed in 6o B. C. his work of consolidation, having been appointed the first ' Protector-General' and placed in charge also of the ' northern road' west of Chü-shih.l4

From the time when Chü-shih was permanently secured by the establishment of a Chinese garrison, down to the first decade of the first century A. D., Chinese political control over the Turfân region appears to have been maintained uninterruptedly. It is during this period of seventy years of continuous occupation by imperial troops that Turfân may be supposed to have first received that strong impregnation with elements of Chinese civilization which, strengthened by similar later periods of close political dependence, persists to the present day and markedly distinguishes its people from those of the western oases of the Tarim basin. The importance that Chinese policy attached at that time to Chü-shih, evidently as a kind of bastion securing the Tarim basin against the danger of Hun aggression from the north-east, is indicated by the establishment there in 48 B. c. of the special post of military commandant known as Wu-chi-hsiao-wei A a 1.5j 4, an appointment of consequence revived in Later Han times.16 He had his residence in Anterior Chü-shih at the fortified camp of Kao-ch`ang --1 A v., the present Kara-khaja.16

In the Yüan-shih period, A. D. 1-5, the Wu-chi-hsiao-wei Hsü P`u-yü opened the ' new northern route ' repeatedly referred to in earlier chapters, which greatly shortened the journey from the Jade Gate in the Tun-huang Limes to Posterior Chü-shih.17 It was evidently meant to bring that territory within easier reach of the Chinese base and hence into closer dependence. From

Chinese control of Chü-shih established.

Defection of king of Posterior Chü-shih.

loa For Wei-hsü and Wei-li, cf. Serindia, iii. pp. 1230 sq.

11 See Wylie, J. Anthrop. Inst., xi. pp. 106 sq. ; De Groot, Hunnen, pp. 178 sq.

12 See Wylie, ibid., xi. p. 107 ; De Groot, ibid., pp. 193, 198.

13 These events are related at some length in the notice on Chü-shih, as translated by Wylie, ibid., xi. pp. 107 sqq. The locality of this military colony is not stated. For a short but clearer record of the essential facts, see De Groot, ibid., p. 202.

14 Cf. De Groot, ibid., pp. 205 sq. But see also Chavannes, T'oung-pao, 1907, p. 154, note I, where the origin of the title and its relation to the protection of the ' northern road ' west

of Chü-shih (Turfàn) are brought out more clearly.

15 Regarding the title 1-Vu-chi-hsiao-wei and its supposed origin, cf. Chavannes, T'oung-pao, 1907, p. 154, note 2. If it really was derived from two separate functions, it seems at any rate clear that at Chü-shih there was never more than one officer holding that title at one time.

16 See Chavannes, ibid., 1907, p. 155, note 1. The place of this military colony is not stated in the Han Annals. For its location at Kao-ch'ang, originally called Tien-ti, first mentioned by a late authority, cf. Franke, Chinesische Tenzpelinschrift aus Idikutfahri, p. 31.

17 See above, pp. 542 sq., 552 ; Serindia, ii..pp. 705 sqq. ; Chavannes, T'oung-pao, 1905, p. 533.