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Hong-xi: Year 1, Month 8, Day 29

10 Oct 1425

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The Rong-chang Earl Chen Zhi, assistant regional commander of Jiao-zhi, and others memorialized: "The rebellious bandits Lu Wen-lu, Pan Liao, Chen Wen, Ruan Guang-lie, Hu Gang, Ruan Zi-ji, Ruan Ru-yan (Alt: Ruan Ru-xian), Chen Jiang, Chen Qing, Chen Yuan-zhong, Hu Jiang and their soldiers and other followers have all stated that they wish to change their ways and start anew. It is requested that Imperial orders and instructions of comfort be issued." The Emperor read the memorial and said to his attendant ministers: "The man and yi peoples have, since ancient times, alternated between rebellion and submission. We should not find this strange. Engaging in war is not the way of an Emperor who is greatly imbued with virtuous power. It is better that I pardon them in accordance with their expressed desire. This will also alleviate the suffering of the Imperial army". Accordingly, Imperial orders were sent to Wen-lu and the others as follows: "You were originally all good men, but because the officials acted improperly in pacifying and ruling you, you fled into the hills and forests, raised forces and resisted orders. Your original sentiments were certainly understandable, but fathers and sons, husbands and wives and elder and younger brothers have thus been separated. They cannot live together in peace and in times of sickness and death, they cannot help each other. You have suffered harshness for many years now. This is very saddening. Now, I have inherited the Imperial throne and rule over all places. All those both within and without the seas are my children. Everyone, regardless of the seriousness of their crimes, has now been pardoned. The regional commander has said that you are repentant and have changed your ways. I am pleased with this and am especially sending persons with Imperial orders to proceed there and instruct you. If you have truly changed your ways for the better, those who wish to return to their original places and former posts are to proceed to the regional commander's headquarters and advise of your names, so that such can be memorialized. You will be appointed to positions and employed as before. Those who are ordinary people will be given seeds and farming implements by the government and be exempted from taxes for five years. Those transgressions committed in the past will be like the winter ice at the coming of spring, thawing and disappearing completely. They will not be further subject to investigation. These words of mine have passed to Heaven and Earth. You should have no further doubts. If you let matters drift without decision, you will lose this opportunity and latter it will be too late to repent." Imperial orders were also sent to Zhi and the others saying: "If they come to allegiance, they should be well treated and pacified."

Xuan-zong: juan 8.9b-10b

Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 16, page 0220/222

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Preferred form of citation for this entry:

Geoff Wade, translator, Southeast Asia in the Ming Shi-lu: an open access resource, Singapore: Asia Research Institute and the Singapore E-Press, National University of Singapore, http://epress.nus.edu.sg/msl/reign/hong-xi/year-1-month-8-day-29, accessed October 30, 2020