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Abstract

In the early eighteenth century, the Kangxi emperor was presented with two maps in Chinese, one each from the officials Gioro Mamboo and Shi Shipiao. The maps showed southern China and Southeast Asia and were based on Dutch charts. The officials presented the maps at a time when the emperor had recently issued a law restricting Chinese trade in Southeast Asia. The map presented by Shi Shipiao adds information about sailing routes and export goods that were subject to the trade restrictions imposed by the emperor. This article argues that rather than being intended to provide a representation of seafaring knowledge, Shi aimed to use the map he presented to convince the emperor to lift the restrictions he had imposed on trade. This therefore provides an example of how maps could be used for political ends. In contrast to many other Chinese maps influenced by European sciences, these two maps show no Jesuit involvement but resemble the Selden Map as well as Japanese and Buginese charts, representing a maritime perspective in the history of knowledge exchange.

In: East Asian Science, Technology, and Medicine
Open Access
In: A Collated and Critical Study of the Xiang’er Commentary to the Laozi
Open Access
In: A Collated and Critical Study of the Xiang’er Commentary to the Laozi
In: A Collated and Critical Study of the Xiang’er Commentary to the Laozi
In: A Collated and Critical Study of the Xiang’er Commentary to the Laozi