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Jia-jing: Year 16, Month 4, Day 13

21 May 1537

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The Emperor again instructed the Ministry of War, saying: "The present undertaking in Annam is for the purpose of eliminating disorder in the country. It is thus of a different nature to that in the time of Tai-zong. Memorialize on proposals as to the appropriate use of troops." The Ministry of War proposed eleven arrangements: "1. It is requested that the titles of the seals to be borne by the senior generals be Imperially fixed, and that the various civil and military officials be provided with Imperial orders, verification tallies, banners and warrants. 2. Northern persons are not suited for a Southern expedition. We should mobilize the Han troops of Guang-dong/Guang-xi, Si-chuan, Gui-zhou, Hu-guang and Fu-jian as well as the "wolf" Miao, who are skilled with the hook knife, and other native troops. The regional commanders should be permitted to deploy these troops as circumstances dictate. Also, strict military orders should be issued forbidding them from plundering or killing those who surrender. 3. Military policies and the advancing or otherwise of the troops should be decided by the supreme commander as circumstances determine. The various deputy and assistant commanders, the three offices, and the subordinate offices should all be placed under him and be subject to his direction. 4. Two supervising secretaries and two investigating censors should be sent to record and verify merit achievements. 5. Those who lead the Han and native troops should be skilled in control and in urging the troops to victory. Those who sell themselves to the bandits or secretly have communication with spies must be punished without pardon. 6. Qin Subprefecture, Si-ming and Ping-xiang in Guang-dong/Guang-xi and Lin-an and Meng-zi in Yun-nan are all routes by which the troops can be advanced. It is necessary to enlist persons who are very familiar with the yi situation to act as local guides. 7. On the day the troops are advanced, all passes must be firmly guarded to prevent fleeing. 8. On going into battle, those who are able to capture or kill the enemy leaders should be given good rewards, while those who wilfully violate orders and those who loiter, observing to see which way the battle will go, should be subject to military law. 9. All areas through which the Imperial army passes or at which it stays should be instructed to assist in the provision of implements and materials. The localities should be ordered to make preparations. 10. The grand coordinators and other officials should be required to jointly monitor the progress of the expedition and are to provide government silver for the rewarding of generals and the troops. All are to be instructed to act generously. 11. The silver warrants, monetary rewards and silks which have been conferred on the army prior to the expedition should, when the regional commander arrives, be handled as he sees fit." It was commanded that all matters be handled as proposed. It was also ordered that Li He-Ming, a supervising secretary in the Office of Scrutiny for War and Fu Feng-ao, a censor of the Fu-jian Circuit proceed to Guang-dong/Guang-xi and that Ma Ru-zhang, a supervising secretary in the Office of Scrutiny for Justice and Hu Shi-ji, a censor of the Guang-dong Circuit proceed to Yun-nan/Gui-zhou and that they follow the troops and record merit achievements.

Shi-zong: juan 199.3b-4b

Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 80, page 4180/82

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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/jia-jing/year-16-month-4-day-13, accessed November 20, 2019