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Yong-le: Year 7, Month 1, Day 24

8 Feb 1409

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The Ministry of Revenue advised: "Jiao-zhi is newly-attached and it is difficult to levy land taxes in their entirety. Also it is extremely troublesome to have to make up the shortfall through transporting rice in by cart and horse. Thus, fishing taxes to be paid in rice, with two dou of rice being paid for each guan due, should be implemented. The Emperor said: "I was concerned about the people in Jiao-zhi, suffering under the rebellious bandits. Thus, I raised troops to punish the wicked and console the people. It was intended to lighten taxes and corvee requirements, so that the people could rest. However, troubling the people in order to provide the administration's expenses is something which cannot be avoided. The payment of fishing tax in paper money is simple and convenient. However, as a temporary expedient, payment is now to be made in rice. You, Ministry of Revenue, are to send a notice advising of this. After a year, if there are roughly sufficient supplies for the army, the old system is to be reverted to." The Emperor also said: "I have noted that in former dynasties, when emergency measures became long-term policies, it always indicated problems in the administration. You are to be careful. Do not forget to revert to the former system, or we will lose the faith of the people."

Tai-zong: juan 87.4a

Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 11, page 1157

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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/yong-le/year-7-month-1-day-24, accessed October 23, 2019