War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression
(1931-1945)
Civil War and Founding of the PRC
(1945-1949)
Tales of Hong Kong
(1840-1949)
Tales of Macao
(1840-1949)

Sino-French War (1883-1885)

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The Sino-French War: an Overview

The Sino-French War was instigated by the French invasion of Vietnam, a tributary state of China. The invasion eventually spread to China, and both sides registered victories and defeats in battles. It ended when the Qing government decided to sue for peace after gaining the upper hand in several land battles. The resultant treaty effectively handed Vietnam to France, which emboldened the imperialist powers to intensify their efforts in seizing China’s other tributary states. This eventually led to the collapse of the traditional Sinocentric tributary system.

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(1) The Imperialist’s Growing Interest in China’s Tributary States

With the Qing regime weakened by the two Opium Wars, the imperialist powers began to view China’s tributary states as fair game for conquest. Sino-French tensions grew as France sought to control Vietnam.

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(2) Land and Sea Campaigns

The eruption of the Sino-French War in 1883 brought China and France into confrontation both on land and at sea. France had the upper hand in naval battles, yet suffered some setbacks in land campaigns that eventually led to the downfall of its cabinet.

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(3) The Sino-French Treaty of Tientsin

With a major victory, the Battle of Zhennan Pass, under its belt, the Qing government decided to opt out of the war while victorious. This resulted in the signing of the Sino-French Treaty of Tientsin, which officially recognised Vietnam as a French protectorate and granted numerous concessions to France.

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(4) The Gradual Disintegration of the Traditional Tributary System

With its national prestige slumped after the two Opium Wars, China gradually lost its tributary states. When Vietnam, China’s most important tributary state in Mainland Southeast Asia, was lost to France in the Sino-French War, it marked the disintegration of the Sinocentric tributary state system.

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The Sino-French War: an Overview

The Sino-French War was instigated by the French invasion of Vietnam, a tributary state of China. The invasion eventually spread to China, and both sides registered victories and defeats in battles. It ended when the Qing government decided to sue for peace after gaining the upper hand in several land battles. The resultant treaty effectively handed Vietnam to France, which emboldened the imperialist powers to intensify their efforts in seizing China’s other tributary states. This eventually led to the collapse of the traditional Sinocentric tributary system.

The Sino-French War: an Overview

The Sino-French War was instigated by the French invasion of Vietnam, a tributary state of China. The invasion eventually spread to China, and both sides registered victories and defeats in battles. It ended when the Qing government decided to sue for peace after gaining the upper hand in several land battles. The resultant treaty effectively handed Vietnam to France, which emboldened the imperialist powers to intensify their efforts in seizing China’s other tributary states. This eventually led to the collapse of the traditional Sinocentric tributary system.

(1) The Imperialist’s Growing Interest in China’s Tributary States

With the Qing regime weakened by the two Opium Wars, the imperialist powers began to view China’s tributary states as fair game for conquest. Sino-French tensions grew as France sought to control Vietnam.

(2) Land and Sea Campaigns

The eruption of the Sino-French War in 1883 brought China and France into confrontation both on land and at sea. France had the upper hand in naval battles, yet suffered some setbacks in land campaigns that eventually led to the downfall of its cabinet.

(3) The Sino-French Treaty of Tientsin

With a major victory, the Battle of Zhennan Pass, under its belt, the Qing government decided to opt out of the war while victorious. This resulted in the signing of the Sino-French Treaty of Tientsin, which officially recognised Vietnam as a French protectorate and granted numerous concessions to France.

(4) The Gradual Disintegration of the Traditional Tributary System

With its national prestige slumped after the two Opium Wars, China gradually lost its tributary states. When Vietnam, China’s most important tributary state in Mainland Southeast Asia, was lost to France in the Sino-French War, it marked the disintegration of the Sinocentric tributary state system.