Treaty of Tientsin
|Treaty of Tientsin|
Signing of the treaty between Britain and China
The Treaty of Tientsin, now also known as the Treaty of Tianjin, is a collective name for several documents signed at Tianjin (then romanized as Tientsin) in June 1858. They ended the first phase of the Second Opium War, which had begun in 1856. The Qing, Russian, and Second French Empires, the United Kingdom, and the United States were the parties involved. These unequal treaties opened more Chinese ports to foreign trade, permitted foreign legations in the Chinese capital Beijing, allowed Christian missionary activity, and legalized the import of opium.
The Xianfeng Emperor authorized negotiations for the treaty on May 29, 1858. The treaty with the British was signed less than a month later on June 25.
- Great Britain, France, Russia, and the United States would have the right to station legations in Beijing (Peking, a closed city at the time).
- Eleven more Chinese ports would be opened for foreign trade, including Newchwang, Tamsui (Taiwan), Hankou and Nanjing.
- The right of foreign vessels including warships to navigate freely on the Yangtze River.
- The right of foreigners to travel in the internal regions of China for the purpose of travel, trade or missionary activities.
- Religious liberty to all Christians in China.
- China was to pay an indemnity of 6 million taels of silver: 2 for France, 2 for Britain military expenses and 2 for compensating British merchants.
- Official letters and other documents exchanged between China and Britain are to be banned from referring to British Officials and Subjects of the Crown by the character "夷" (yí), meaning "barbarian".
The Treaties of Tientsin uses several words that have somewhat ambiguous meanings. For example, the words “settlement” and “concession” can often be confused. The term “settlement” refers to a parcel of land leased to a foreign power and is composed of both foreign and national peoples; locally elected foreigners govern them. The term “concession” refers to a long-term lease of land to a foreign power where the foreign nation has complete control of the land; it is governed by consular representation.
Following the pattern set by the great powers of Europe, the United States took on a protectionist stance, built up its navy, and tried to create a mercantile empire. The United States was one of the leading signing “treaty powers” in China, forcing open a total of 23 foreign concessions from the Chinese government. While it is often noted that the United States did not control any settlements in China, they shared British land grants and were actually invited to take land in Shanghai but refused because the land was thought to be disadvantageous.
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- Unequal Treaties
- Imperialism in Asia
- 19th-century Protestant missions in China
- William Bradford Reed
- Johnstone, William C. (October 1937). "International Relations: The Status of Foreign Concessions and Settlements in the Treaty Ports of China". The American Political Science Review. 31 (5): 942–8. doi:10.2307/1947920. JSTOR 1947920. OCLC 5545237072.
- Bloch, Kurt (May 1939). "The Basic Conflict over Foreign Concessions in China". Far Eastern Survey. 8 (10): 111–116. doi:10.1525/as.1939.8.10.01p0703s. JSTOR 3023092. OCLC 5548991122.
- "Treaties of Tianjin, 1858 and 1860". 600 Years of Urban Planning in and around Tianjin. Wason Collection on East Asia and Division of Rare & Manuscript Collections Carl A. Kroch Library, Cornell University. 2004. Archived from the original on 2010-06-21.
- Full text of the Treaty of Tientsin between China and the United Kingdom
- Full text of the Treaty of Tientsin between China and France
- Full text of the Treaty of Tientsin between China and the United States of America
- Full text of the Treaty of Tientsin between China and Russia