Nanjing, Treaty of


Nanjing, Treaty of
(1842)
   The first of the so-called unequal treaties concluded between China and the Great Powers. Signed August 29, and followed by supplementary treaties in July and October 1843, it concluded the First Opium War. The treaties provided for Guangzhou, Xiamen, Fuzhou, Ningbo, and Shanghai to be opened to conduct trade as “treaty ports.” They exempted British nationals from Chinese law and permitted the raising of foreign settlements in these ports, which were also subject to extraterritoriality.
   The Nanjing Treaty abolished the system of gonghang in which 13 Chinese firms monopolized trade with Western countries and permitted British merchants free trade in China. The treaty included a most-favored-nation clause, which extended to the British any privileges negotiated from the Chinese by other countries. Further, the treaty violated China’s territorial integrity with the outright cession of Hong Kong to Britain.
   See also <>; <>.
   FURTHER READING:
    Beeching, Jack. The Opium Wars. London: Hutchinson, 1975;
    Waley, Arthur. The Opium War through Chinese Eyes. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1968.
   ADRIAN-U-JIN ANG

Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.

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