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Zheng-tong: Year 11, Month 7, Day 22

14 Aug 1446

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Imperial orders of instruction were sent to Si Ji-fa. The orders read: "Since the time of your grandfather, your family has received great kindness from the Court. An office was established and your grandfather was appointed as an official to govern the people. Your father Si Ren-fa rebelled, acted unrighteously and attacked and engaged in killing in neighbouring areas. The Court could not accept this and ordered generals to lead their troops in proceeding to punish his crimes and kill the gang members. Your father was beheaded by the people of Ava-Burma and his head was presented to the Court. The statutory requirement that evil-doers must be executed has been met. I felt that the punishment should not extend to his heir, as in so deciding, I would be demonstrating the great virtuous power of the Emperor. I have heard that, although your father engaged in evil, you repeatedly remonstrated against this and now have repeatedly sent your younger brother Zhao Sai and others to come to Court to admit guilt. Recently, you also sent Tao-meng Dao Ke-meng and others to offer tribute at Court. When they arrived at the capital, they advised that you wished to personally come to Court, but that you were concerned about your crimes and were very worried that you would be subject to severe punishment. However, I employ great trust in my rule of all under Heaven. How could I be willing to lose the trust of the distant peoples! I have ordered the ministry and the regional commander and grand defender of Yun-nan to explain things and instruct Dao Ke-meng and so on, and to send people to escort them back to your area. Now, I am especially sending persons with Imperial orders forgiving all your previous crimes. You are to personally bring your chieftains and others and come to the capital for an audience at Court, and I will consider appointing you to an official post and allocating you land and people to govern. If you are irresolute and do not not respect my words, I will have to order the senior generals to lead their crack troops in crushing Meng-yang and attacking your fort. At that time, it will be too late for repentance. Grace will indeed be shown to those people who repent their mistakes, but the law will not tolerate those who do not admit guilt. I have sympathized with your repeated entreaties and have especially shown grace in guaranteeing your life. This has certainly been observed by Heaven and the spirits. You should think deeply on this. I have also considered the fact that among the chieftains and people of Meng-yang, there are those who do not understand the rites and the law. They may lure you into hiding away or coerce you into not coming out. This will be extremely harmful to you and it will bring harm to all living things there. I am also sending Imperial orders of instruction for them, ordering them to escort you to the capital and requiring them to look after your family members, property and all your tribes-people who you leave behind when you come and, after you have settled, to return everything to you, without losing even the smallest thing. I do not eat my words. Any who dare to not observe my orders will be eliminated, without pardon. These instructions are for your advice. You are so informed."

Ying-zong: juan 143.6b-7a

Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 28, page 2832/33

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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/zheng-tong/year-11-month-7-day-22, accessed August 13, 2020