The Dungan Revolt (1862-77)
or Tongzhi Hui Revolt
; traditional Chinese
? ? /, Dungan
: ? /?
) or Hui (Muslim) Minorities War
was a mainly ethnic and religious war fought in 19th-century western China
, mostly during the reign of the Tongzhi Emperor
(r. 1861-75) of the Qing dynasty
. The term sometimes includes the Panthay Rebellion
, which occurred during the same period. However, this article relates specifically to the uprising by members of the Muslim Hui
and other Muslim
ethnic groups in China's Shaanxi
and Ningxia provinces
, as well as in Xinjiang
, between 1862 and 1877. Some claim that the revolt arose over a pricing dispute involving the sale of bamboo poles between a Han
merchant and a Hui. However, according to historical records from the era, bamboo poles were bought in large quantities by the Hui to make spears as weaponry. Moreover, there had already been attacks on Han counties prior to the Shengshan bamboo incident. The conflict eventually led to large-scale massacres of Han and non-Muslim Chinese. A recorded 20.77 million population reduction in Shaanxi and Gansu occurred due to migration and war related death. A further 74.5% population reduction occurred in Gansu, and 44.7% in Shaanxi. In Shaanxi, 83.7% (~5.2 million) of the total loss occurred in the period of war as a consequence of mass migration and war-related death. Many civilian deaths were also caused by famine due to war conditions.
The uprising occurred on the western bank of the Yellow River
in Shaanxi, Gansu and Ningxia, but excluded Xinjiang Province. A chaotic affair, it often involved diverse warring bands and military leaders with no common cause or a single specific goal. A common misconception is that the revolt was directed against the Qing dynasty
, but no evidence shows that the rebels intended to attack the capital, Beijing
, or to overthrow the entire Qing government, but to exact revenge on their personal enemies for injustices. When the rebellion failed, mass emigration of the Dungan people
to Imperial Russia
ensued. Read more...