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Zheng-tong: Year 5, Month 3, Day 15

16 Apr 1440

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Imperial orders of instruction were sent to Si Ren-fa, the pacification superintendent of Lu-chuan Pacification Superintendency in Yun-nan. The orders read: "You reside in a distant place on the border and have repeatedly fulfilled your tribute duties. Thus, the Court has continued to show you great grace. Recently, you have changed your previous ways and taken it upon yourself to raise troops and attack neighbouring territories. In the Court, all the ministers requested that troops be sent to punish your crimes. Although the troops were despatched, I also ordered the regional commander and grand defender to make known instructions to pacify you through negotiations, with the requirement that if you were able to respect my orders, the troops were to be immediately withdrawn. Later, you sent Tao-meng Dao and others to the Court with tribute of elephants, brocades and other goods. Then you further sent Mang Meng-fang and Dao Bing-ying to offer tribute. I now know that you have regretted your mistakes and now am especially sending a person with Imperial orders pardoning your former crimes. You should change your ways and incline towards culture, cultivate good relations with your neighbours, protect your territory and send persons to the Court to offer tribute in accordance with the regulations. In this way you will long enjoy the prosperity of great peace. If your people have problems and these have not reached the notice of the Court, you are permitted to memorialize on these matters and I will make arrangements. If you do not accord with my wishes, go against Heaven and violate principles, the Imperial army will again arrive. You and your family will then be eliminated and it will be too late for regret." Further Imperial orders were sent to the Yun-nan Regional Commander and Commissioner-in-Chief of the Left Mu Ang, the assistant regional commander and Assistant Commissioner-in-Chief Ma Xiang, the three offices of Yun-nan and the regional inspecting censor. The orders read: "In the past, because the Lu-chuan man bandit Si Ren-fa rebelled and acted against the Way, I ordered you to lead troops on expedition to eliminate him. Now I have received your memorial which notes that you advanced the troops along separate routes, but when you reached the Long-ba region, Si Ren-fa repeatedly sent persons with elephants, brocades and other goods to bring to Court and offer as tribute. This shows that the germ of repentance has sprouted but that an avenue for self-renewal was not previously available. Now, I am especially sending an Imperial order pardoning all the crimes of Si Ren-fa and the others. You are to select two or three knowledgable and experienced people to take instructions requiring him to change his ways and make a new start, so as to bring prosperity to all living things of the region. Those sent are also to examine the situation among the people there. You must seriously warn those engaged in defence that they must not be lax or remiss. As to Tao-Meng Dao Pai-ben and the others who were sent previously, detain them in Yun-nan and guard them securely so that they do not escape and flee."

Ying-zong: juan 65.6a-b

Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 25, page 1247/48

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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-5-month-3-day-15, accessed January 21, 2021