The Birth of Vietnam
Project: The Birth of Vietnam
Author: Lem Chuck Moth
Started date: March/01/2010
Last updated: December/30/2017
All right reserved.
Since this paper is still drafted, the readers would be advised to ignore any context errors. The content is not final and subjected to be reviewed.
The Vietnam' s identity was conceived when the Nguyen' s ruler Gia-Long (1802-1820) went to request the Chinese Emperor Jiaquing (1760-1820) of the Quing dynasty the authorization to use the word "Nam-viet" for the name of his new country. At first, the Chinese emperor objected strongly because of serious concern that the request might lead to confusion of identity. As Nam-Viet has phonetically and etymologically very close with "Dai-Viet", Jiaquing' s cocern was that Gia-long might try to back claim on Dai-Viet heritage as Vietnamese. His rational was that Annam and Dai-Viet had two distinct historical backgrounds, even though they were formed under the same Han Chinese initiative. As we had seen, Nam-Viet (Nan-Yueh in Chinese) was formed by the Han Dynasty as part of Nan-Tiao right after the conquest of the Hiong Wang Kingdom (Champapura: The Impact on the Tian Legacy: The Fall of Hiong-Wang). As its name implied, Nan-Viet was meant to be the southern Yueh that was a reflection of implanting the northern Yueh (Chao-Yueh-Shih)' s legacy to the south. Only at later date that the Ming referred Nan-Yueh as Kiao-tche after it was made officially part of China (Notes: Annam vs Nan-Yueh). The Chinese Emperor Jiaquing rejected Gia-long' s proposal, but in redefining it as a country of its own he suggested calling Annam as Viet-Nam instead. Gia-Long must to know and agreed upon that Dai-Viet was formed by the Ming Dynasty to be much more extensive in both territory and population than the Annamite State of Tonkin as originally formed by the Han Dynasty. During the Han era, Kiao-Tche was a confederation of states that covered very much the southern part of China while Annam was formed specifically to be its military commanding center and in some occasion its capital. Under the ruling of the Han, the Tang and later the Ming, China was centralized and Annam as well as other states of Kiao-Tche were intergrated completely under the assumed Chinese nationality. During the reign of the Ming emperor Yongle, the identity of Annam, Dai-Viet (or Kiao-Tche) intermingled (Lanna: The Dai-Viet' s Connection: Annam became Dai-Viet). In other eras, China adopted the decentralized concept of a Cakravatin Empire and Annam was treated as a state of its own, having some degree of autonomy that most scholars mistook as politically independent. In any case, Annam always depended on Chinese financial support to sustain its overcrowded population. On its own standing, Annam had to apply aggression on neighboring states and depended very much on the booty of war and wrested resources from other countries to survive. Code-named Nam-Tien by the Vietnamese historians, the Vietnamese relentless campaign toward the south started after the Le Dynasty broke Annam free from the Chinese control and support.
The Historical Background of Vietnam
The Chinese emperor Jiaquing was right to voice his concern about the identity confusion that might arise between Vietnam and Dai-Viet. The problem started during the compilation of modern Vietnamese history when Vietnam needs an identity of its own to qualify as an independent state. French Sinologists had since looked in ancient, Chinese records for sign of Vietnamese antiquity beyond the Han era, but failed. Any mentioning of Annam in the ancient Chinese texts was so far related to Chinese officials or rulers who administered Kiao-Tche after the fall of the Tchou Dynasty. No information so far found to confirm indigenous Annam at the Red River Delta like other states of Dai-Viet beyond the fall of the Hiong-Wang Kingdom. That would not stop Vietnamese historians to look for proofs that might discredit Chinese records and found sketchy accounts retrieved from oral recollections of Dai-Viet' s Past that were totally unconnected to the birth of Vietnam (BViet: Lac Lords The Earliest Tradition: pp. 1-4). Blamed to the Ming Dynasty for the missing information, they went ahead using them to construct a hoary Vietnamese history that rivals China in antiquity. The Chinese emperor Jiaquing ' s concern came then to realize as Vietnam had proved itself to be a stand-alone state from China. Our findings proved that these historical accounts of the Ming collection were not Vietnamese, but were instead legacies from different eras of worldly development. For instance, the tradition of the Dragon King Lac Long Quan was actually the exploit of the Ocean Mahodhara Naga King who, in consortium with the Queen of the West (Queen Au Co) was actually the precursor to the conception of the Yueh-shih power house of Central Asia (Champapura: The Cosmogony of Po-Nokor: The Rise of the Yueh-Shih). On the other hand, the historical data of the Hung Kings was about the Tsu Dynasty during their ruling over the Jungle Kingdom of Prey-Nokor (Lin-Yi in Chinese). The rest of the historical data could also be proved to be not of Indigenous Vietnamese, but was instead related to Han development of a Centralized China. In the Han development, Annam was actually formed the same way and at the same time that modern states of Southern China, Quangsi and Quanton were formed on the territory of the Tsu state of the Hiong-Wang Kingdom. Annam' s real history started when Li Le took control of the Annamete throne and started on his own Nam-Tian ' s campaign down south. In a relentless move, the campaign continued with land encroachment by the Le and later the Nguen of Hue against its southern neighbors. Since then, the Annamete history was not as simple and rosy as portrayed in modern Vietnamese history books. From court manipulation to bloody campaigns, the natives were the most to be suffered through harsh measures carried on by the Nguyen Court and theirs ordeals were far to be over. Back from meeting with the Chinese Emperor, Gia-Long and his descendants completed the birth of Vietnam of today at first through the intervention of China and later of the French colonial rule.
THE NAM-TIAN OR THE VIETNAMIZATION DOWN SOUTH
It was the Chinese Han Dynasty who built Annam through drastic measures in depopulating the Tsu State and repopulating it with Annamete migrants from Central China. The Hans then organized mass migration of the Yueh people from Central Asia to give the southern province of China an upper-edge military center over the native Khmer-Mon People who were pushed down south beyond Je-nan. The Yueh or Viet People were originally the Central Asian Chao-Yueh-Shih people of the north. During the compilation, of Vietamese modern history, scholars mistook them as the Yue people of Kiao-Tche (Notes: Yueh vs Yue People) and proceeded to use historical background of Kiao-Tche as of Annam or Vietnam. To illustrate the modern misconception of Kiao-Tche, we shall use the same historical data from the Vietnamese collection to reconstruct the history of Kiao-Tche from its debut to the time of its subversion by the Hans.
The Kiao-Tche Connection
The Viet So Luoc' s account of the Hung Kings building their Kingdom at Van-Lang (BViet: Appendix C: The Rise of the Hung Kings in the Viet so luoc p. 309) was used to prove the Vietnamese antiquity to be settle at the Hong River. We shall argue instead that it was actually a Dai-Viet' s version of the Stieng ' s account of the formation of the Tsu State under the tutelage of the Tchou Dynasty. The word "Hung" is a Vietnamese transcription of the Chinese word "Huang" of which the title Huang-Ti (Emperor) is derived from. Equivalent to Sanskrit word "Cakravatin Empire", the Chinese conception of Huang-Wang was originated from the Meru Culture. The Vietnamese account of the Hung King set their first rise to power in 2879 BC that clearly predated the mythical Yellow Emperor (2698-2598 BC) of China. After a long period of time, the Hung king reappeared again during king Chuang (696-682 BC) of the Tchou Dynasty and stayed until the fall of the Tchou Dynasty in 221 BC and the end of the Hiong-Wang Kingdom. The dating of the Hung Kings' reappearance in the reign of the Tchou King Chuang is consistent with our previous claim that it was the Tchou (Cola in Sanskrit) of the Coladara Naga Family who went out to invaded Middle East and brought the Meru Culture to the Gangetic India (The Nagadvipa: The Naga' s Mythology: The Naga Land). The first Hung King was probably Meru himself (or his immediate offspring Mahameru) who after marrying the queen of the west moved his court to Mesopotamia bringing along the conception of the cakravatin Empire at Middle East. The Hung tradition was restored after the Meru Culture was brought back to the east by king Nebu. The next Hung Kings were actually a new generation of the Tchou who went out to form the Jungle Kingdom extending itself to the Chinese coastal region of China. Formed as a confederation of states (Kiao-Tche in Chinese), Hiong-Wang stretched its territory from Manipura to Southern Seashore of the Chinese continent of today. Its population was known as the Kun-lun people who practiced the Meru. According to the Chinese tradition, they were the first to settle in the fertile lands of Southern China that were until then submerged since the Great Flood. Known also as Prey-Nokor (Lin-Yi in Chinese), Hiong-Wang included in its Southern part, Sou-Chen and Yue-Chang that were going to become the progenator of Funan (The Nagadvipa: The Hiong-Wang Kingdom: Lin-Yi or the Jungle Kingdom). The Stieng's tradition claims that a prince from the Tchou court, after marrying one of their local girls, became their ruler. The Stiengs were indigenous people who spoke Mon-Khmer austroasiatic language who lived among indigenous tribesmen of Vietnam today. Their tradition conveys that they were the first to settle at the coastal region of China after the Great Flood, but were later chased out by the Chinese to their current place of today. We could relate their ordeal to the conquest of the Quin Dynasty over the Hiong-Wang Kingdom in 221 BC. After subduing both the Tchou and the Hong courts, the Quin emperor established himself Shih Huang-Ti (the same title as the Hung Kings) over China. True to the convention of a cakravatin monarch, Shih Huang-ti restored back the Tsu State to King An-Duang who was a family member of the old Hung Kings of Ssu-Chuan (BViet: 1: Lac Lords: King An Duang: p. 19). His family was ruling over Nam-cuong (the Southern Border), comprising Cao-bang and adjacent portions of Quangxi to the north. We know now that Ssu-Cuang was then the birthplace of the Tsu court that became the capital of the Hung Kings, known as Van-Lang in the Dai-Viet chronicle. It infers that during the rule of King An-Duang, the people of the Tsu State were still the Kun-lun people speaking the Mon-Khmer language. The situation was going to change after the Hans started to make their move to subdue the Quins and took control of China in 207 BC. To transform China as a centralized state, the Hans reorganized Chinese communities to be under total control of the Han court. As we had argued, the formation of Annam was so complex to fit into the mold of ancient Leadership' s common practices of the past (Notes: Ancient Leadership and the make-up of theirs Dominion). In their southern expansion, evidences show that the Han rulers conducted a drastic de-population of the Kun-lun (Khmer-Mon) people to make room for the Annamete communities of Central China to move in (Champapura: The Impact on the Tian Legacy: The Displacement of the Kamara People). We also argued that the need of army recruits to form southern military command post required the Hans to organize mass migration of the Yueshi from the north to the settle among the Annamete people. To make it as a province of China, the Han divided Dai-Viet into seven prefectures and was placed under the authority of a Chinese governor (BViet: Lac Lords: The Coming of the Han p. 27). His residence was at first in Annam, but was moved to Kiao-Tche' s central location of Tsang-Wu (in modern Quangxi) while Annam still stayed as its administrative center. At the mean time, evidence show that the displaced court of king An-Duang had joined in with other displaced Hung Kings to form the Kingdom of Lin-Yi at Je-Nan and started fighting back against the Hans for the control of Kiao-Tche. To protect it from the claim of the new formed court of Lin-Yi, the Hans formed Annam to become its military commanding post.
The Annamete and the Viet Connection
With the lack of information, we could not elaborate more on the transition of power from the Quin to the Han. Indication however show that the Quin' s rule was already Tartaric. After the death of Shih Huang Ti, the Hans immediately sprung to power and started reorganizing China into a centralized state. This could not be possible if the northern Yueh leadership of Han elements had not been infiltrating themselves into the South during the late reign of the Quin Emperor. These events led us to believe that the Hans took power through internal uprising rather than a full-blown conquest from outside. When the governor of Quangton was on his deathbed, he summoned the only commissioner named Chao To whom he trusted to receive his advice on the politic of the country (BViet: Chao To: pp. 23). He cautioned Chao-To to distance himself from the civil wars of the north and to take the opportunity to build the south as an independent kingdom (Notes: The Subduction of the Quin by the Hans). Chao-To followed the advice and proclaimed himself king of Nan-Yueh. With more Yueh (or Viet) migrants from the north, Chao-To' s plan of setting Kiao-The as an independent state of its own appears to be plausible. His ambition however clashed with the native Tsu King An-Duang who still presiding over the indigenous people of Kiao-Tche. Unable to win in the battlefield over the supernatural power of the king An-Duang' s crossbow, Chao-To found an alternate way to win over the native king (Notes: The Turtle Claw- triggered Crossbow). Defeated, King An-Duang fled to the Southern sea where he joined other native kings of Prey-Nokor to figh back against the Hans. With the help of Funan, they regrouped themselves and formed Prey-Nokor (in Chinese Lin-Yi) to become their second home (Notes: Xiang-Lin vs Lin-Yi). Among their first statement was the claim of Kiao-Tche to be back under their control. As we had seen, the claim of Kiao-Tche became a national drive for the native Lin-Yi ' s kings who, were no other than the fallen Hung Kings of the Tsu Dynasty taking refuge at Prey Nokor (Prey-Nokor: The Fall of the Hiong-Wang Kingdom: The Remnant of the Tsu Dynasty). It proves that Annam was not indigenous of the Hung River but was formed by the Hans to replace the Khmer communities of the Hiong-Wang Kingdom. The Annamete account of king Tay-Wu being killed by the Hans in 110 BC (BViet: Lac Lords: p.29) could be interpreted as due to the Wu dynasty' s resistance against the Han' s campaign of moving the Annamete people from Annam (Central China) to the southern territory. The Han General who Subdued King Tay-Wu who was then the contemporary king of the Wu State was quoted to be from the left side of the Old Au Lac region of the Han era. He was undoubtedly a member of the Yueh Chao-fa of Viet royal houses who were the offspring of Lord Lac with the queen Au-co. The advent of the Trung Trac sisters against the Hans was actually the outcome of the Annamete (Central Chinese) of the Wu State who rose up against the roughness of the Viet rulers. This animosity between the Annamete people and their Viet government stayed to become one of the Vietnamese internal unrest until modern days (Notes: The Annamite People). When the Hans delegated Ma-Yuan to build Annam into becoming a southern military commanding post of China the Trung sisters rose up to challenge the work of Ma-Yuan (Notes: The Work of Ma-Yuan). At the same time, Lin-Yi continued on to claim over Kiao-Tche until its Chinese governor decided to launch to launch a punitive attack against the Khmer court of Prey-Nokor. After his court was crushed by the attack of Tan-Ho-Shih, Kaundinya (Yang Mah in Chinese texts) stopped the claim altogether (Nokor: The Birth of the Khmer Empire: The Attack of Tan-Ho-Chih), Since then, evidences show that Annam lost its eminent importance and was neglected by the following Chinese courts. When the Chenla clan upraised against king Rudravarman, the Sui offered the deposed Khmer King safe heaven and allowed him to rebuild his court at Yunnan. During the early skirmishes with the start-up Tang Dynasty, Ko-lo-fong launched a military campaign to reclaim Dai-Viet and almost annihilate Annam in the process (Xiang-Mai: The Nan-Tchao' s Affair: The Exploit of Khun Borom). Pressured by Chinese people, the Tang fought off the Yunnan court from Kiao-Tche and restored Annam back to its former strength. Nevertheless, KO-Lo-Feng stayed to rule Yunnan and after the initial skirmish, established through Buddhism a good relationship with the Tang Court. Due to his involvement in the politic of Southeast Asia, he was remembered by northern Siam countries as the legendary Khun Borom of Nan-Tchao. As we had argued, his role in the new Southeast Asian Buddhist consortium made it possible to start the first Khmer Cakravatin Empire (Huang-Wang in Chinese) at Prey-Nokor. Since then, a good relationship flourished between Angkor and China through the good neighboring act, had led the Sung Dynasty to have a second though of keeping Annam as a costly military command post of China.
The Southern Campaign
Modern history of Vietnam portrays the Viet occupation of Champapura as complete allowing the Nguyen court to immediately administrate Champapura as a province of Annam.
From that moment, Nguyen Hoang was free to spend all his efforts in organizing his provinces. His talents of administration was equal to his military' s talents and he succeeded of unifying all elements of the population: The incomplete submitted Chams, the vagabond people of the north, the condemned exile people, the ancient partisans of the Mac, the mandarins and transfuged soldiers of the Trinh, and the salvaged mountainous people. (MPA: Les Seigneur du Nord et les Seigneur due Sud)
Our evidences however show that it was not the case. As Champapura was mostly inhabited by independent tribesmen under their own local rulers, taking control of Champapura was not a simple matter. Politically, it was not the building of Champapura as a Viet province that the Le' s court had in mind but rather as a Viet tribute system. At the time, it was the Trinh who was running the Le' s court and was the real power holder of Annam. To set Champapura as a tribute system, a Vietnamese commanding post had been set-up at Hue to be run by the Nguyen family. Ruling on top of the leftover Cham Rulers evidences show that Nguyen Hoang and the Nguyen court depended on smaller Cham courts to carry on the dirty job of tax collection for them. In turn, the Cham courts were themselves functioning the same way and relied mostly on the cooperation of native authorities to sustain their control. With a slight sense of threat, the native rulers could rise quickly into a full-blown rebellion. Nevertheless, evidences show that the Nguyen' s ambition went beyond their duty and took any auspicious moment to build their own venture over the south and by doing so, friction with the Trinh already started. To accomplish their plan, the court of Hue needed the cooperation of the local Cham authorities that were actually ruling over the native people. To straighten the cooperation of Champapura, Nuyen Phuc Tan (1648-1687) handed over his daughter to the Cham King Po Rome. Only from this time on that the Cham kings needed to receive investiture from Hue to ascend the Cham throne, It was a symbolic representation of Cham court' s acceptance as a vassal of Hue (Notes Sur Les Chams: XI-Les archives des dernier rois Chams, By E.M. Durand). The first to receive the investiture was Po Phiktirai who reigned from 1654 to 1657 and was a son-in-law of Po Rome. The same arrangement stayed more than two centuries later, during which time evidences show that the smaller Cham courts were more or less independent from the Hue court. The slow progression was primarily due to limited Viet population in the conquered territory. The arrival of the French missionaries in 1615 however changed the situation. With the accommodation of the French missionaries, more Viet and Chinese migrants were pouring in from the north and formed bigger and bigger Viet communities at the south. By doing so, the French missions helped the Nguyen Court what they otherwise failed in mobilizing in a bigger scale Viet Migration down south. With the new formed Viet communities, the court of Hue started to have more direct control over Champapura that was crucial in the stabilization of the conquered land. The Nguyen court had now Viet people under their control to stand against any potential local rebellion and in no times they went ahead to prevent them from happening. Their strong networked communities allowed the Nguyen to bypass altogether the cooperation of local Cham courts. When the last Cham King Po Con Can decided to flee Champa and took refuge in Cambodia in 1882, Champapura became then a Vietnamese province. The Vietnamization of Champapura had then completed its course and Champa soon became history. The next campaign against Prey Nokor was even harder for the Nguyen court to accomplish. Unlike Champapura, Prey-Nokor was undr the Khmer control and was already well prepared to stand Hue' s possible invasion (Nokor Champa: The Connection with the Court of Udong: The City of Prey Nokor). Nevertheless, Siam intervention in the internal politic of Cambodia made the Khmer court vulnerable and became prey to Hue manipulation. As he had done with the Cham King Po Rome, Nuyen Phuc Tan also handed one of his daughters to the Khmer King Jaya Chetha II (Nokor Champa: The Connection with the Court of Udong: The Formation of the Khmer Court at Udong). In return for favor, Hue requested a part of Prey Nokor for military training to fight against the Trinh. Udong' s internal crises that were solved by the HUe would cost the Khmer Court more and more military control over Prey Nokor.
THE TAY-SON UPRISING
The advent of the Tay-son uprising was the least understood in modern history of Vietnam. Conflicting views so far created more enigmas to the three Tay-son brothers' backgrounds as well as to their motivation. Modern history books portrayed them as of ethnic Vietnamese and theirs motivation was ranging from banditry to a revolutionary peasant class' s uprising against the feudal rule of Hue. From the Khmer sources, we could identify the Tay Son' s brothers to be members of the ancient Cham court and their motivation was to liberate Champapura from the occupation of Hue (Nokor Champa: the Uprising against Dai-viet: The Tay-son brothers). Their mysterious activities during the early phase of the uprising could be linked to the same uprising of Po Vamsa that soon started after Hue took full control of Prey Nokor.
The Rise of the Tay-son' s brothers
Limited distinction between the old and the new Nguyen courts creates identity' s confusion and obscures the whole dynamic of their relationship with the court of Udong. As presented in the Khmer source, the references to both the old and the new Nguyen courts are often unclear during that time period when the Tay-son brothers were still hiding themselves behind the Nguyen identity (Notes: Historical facts about the Tay-son brothers). After the Tay-son brothers took control of Hue in 1776, what was mentioned as the Annamete court in the Khmer source was in fact the court of the Tay-son brothers. With that confusion of identity, precaution should be made in identifying which of the two antagonist Annamete courts was actually involved when they were referenced in the chronicle during the fighting. We started by asserting that the relationship between the court of Prah Keo Pha Im (to the most extend, the whole Udong court) and the old Nguyen Court stopped since 1730, after the breakout of the Po-vamsa' s uprising in Prey-Nokor. The old Nguyen court' s retaliation had resulted in the disappearance of Prah Keo Pha Im and his son Prah Sothat altogether from the court of Udong.
Since then on, Udong was under high scrutiny by the old court of Hue to be an accomplice with the Three Tay-son brothers. This triangular affair would explain what happened next at the court of Udong after the uprising of Po-Vamsa started at Prey Nokor. Through a series of internal intrigues and fighting, we see King Narayraja ascending the throne of Udong while his brother named Prah Ang Non had to escape to Siam (The Siam Kingdome: Notes: The escape to Prey-Nokor). Our assumption is that the father and son, Prah Keo Pha Im and Prah Sothat took refuge with the underground network of the Tay-son brothers until they broke-out the uprising against Hue in 1770. According to the Khmer chronicle, the disappeared faction (of the court of Udong) soon emerged back to take hold of both Udong and Ha-tien after Hue was subdued in 1776 (The Kingdom of Syam: The formation of Thonpuri: The relationship with the court of Udong). It is important to note that up to this stage, the three Tay-son brothers still hid their identity behind the old Nguyen court until the victory that released them from the hiding. Despite the successful campaigns against the Old Nguyen house in 1775 and 1778, the Tay-son brothers appeared to have constraint in showing their true identity and motive. Our assumption was that the fear of the Trinh ' s retaliation might have been a reason behind it. After destroying Hue, they tried to use the captured heir of the Nguyen court to integrate themselves into the security of the old Nguyen family and went the extra length of proposing marriage of one of their own daughters to the prince. The latter' s stubborn rejection forced them to come out to the open and operated under their own identity. To their relief, the Trinh whom they concerned the most, were not in a position to reject their proposition of making alliance against Hue. At the contrary, the Trinh appeared to appreciate their works of eliminating the old Nguyen houve that had been quarreling with since a long time. In return for valuable gifts and tributes, the Trinh granted them title and regalia that they used to gather more Viet support at Prey-Nokor. The Tay-son brothers then went on to show the Trinh that they were worthy of their recognition and went on attacking the old Nguyen house in the open and almost exterminated it. Helped by a French missionary, the sole survivor who was the nephew of the slain Nguyen ruler Hue Vuong named Nguyen-Anh took refuge at Bangkok. After capturing Hue in 1778, Nguyen Nhac took the authority in his own name. Proclaiming himself emperor under the name Thai Duc, he established his own capital at the citadel Cha Ban that was an ancient Cham political center. The Khmer chronicle mentions about a commander of Prey-Nokor, most likely Nguyen Lu of the Three Tay-son Brothers, making request the Khmer King Prah Narayraja to join in the fight but was rejected by King Ramadhipti Non, the next Khmer King of Udong who was installed by Siam. The delay of attacking Prey-Nokor allowed Nguyen-Anh to regroup the Viet support and fought to restore back his authority. Upset of Khmer' s refusal, Nguyen Nhac conveyed to European friends of a possible military incursion into Cambodia (The Kingdom of Syam: The connection with Prey-Nokor: The Tay-son' s interference in Cambodia). In retaliation to Udong, they launched a quick campaign against Phnom Penh, but after a short attack they soon withdrew their troops back to Vietnam.
The Tay-son' s Incursion in Cambodia
According to European sources, the Tay-son brothers appeared to convey a hidden agenda in regard to Cambodia (Notes: The Tay-son' s Ambition on Cambodia). This double scheme might have been another reason that forced Prah Narayraja in leaning toward Siam. However, we could not find any evidences so far to back-up the suspicion. At first, the helps provided by the three brothers to the court of Udong were proved to be in good faith. Due to the past support that the Chams received from the Khmer court, the Khmer alliance to the Cham was much more beneficial to the latter' s cause despite weakness of the Udong court. On the other hand, evidences also show that the brothers had at the time being other priority to take care than to invade Cambodia. After capturing the court of Hue, they went head-on against the Trinh of Tonkin that was at the time under the protection of China. This large-scale campaign might show to Prah Narayraja how ambitious the three brothers were. As expected, they were desperate for all military supports that they could get. Their army' s commander in charge of Prey-Nokor requested the Khmer court to send them Khmer troops to help protect the city. To Udong, it was a rare opportunity for the Khmer court to restore back the Khmer control over Prey Nokor. Nevertheless, the Khmer court appeared to be so weak to fulfill the demand of the Three Tay-son' s brothers. Perhaps of his old age and illness, Prah Narayraja felt that he himself short of personal strength to comply with this obligation. He saw instead in King Ramadhipti Non, a young stock of power to be apt to the expectation. If this was the actual reason behind his abdication, Prah Narayraja was going to be totally disappointed. Having positioning himself on Bangkok' s side, King Ramadhipti Non rejected the Tay-son' s request and prepared himself to face their retaliation. Hearing the new, the Tay-son brothers sent theirs troop for the assault of the Khmer military post at Phnom Penh. They stationed their troops at a place called Chroy Changwa that was located at the opposite shore of the Chaktomuk river facing Phnom Penh. Cham communities settled there since it became the stationary camp during their campaign inside of Cambodia. The retaliation might support the idea that the Tay-son brothers had bad motive against the Khmer court and that the king Ramadhipti Non had all the reason to reject their friendship. After a short fight however, they withdrew their troops back to Annam. Back in Prey-Nokor, they once again attacked Gia-dinh in 1782. It was a large campaign that destroyed both Nguyen-Anh' s stronghold and its support base at Prey Nokor.The two brothers assembled a hundred warships and moved south, forcing their way up to the sai Gon River to launch an assault against the citadel of Gia Dinh. Having succeeded in fighting their way into the city, tay son troops pillaged the shops of Chinese merchants and massacred thousands of Chinese residents. This massacre was directly provoked by the Nguyen Nhac' s key lieutements by an ethnic Chinese general fighting the Nguyen, but more genrally reflected the Tay-son anger at the increasing support given by the Chinese community to their Nguyen rival (TSON: The course of the Tayson uprising: The battles of Dang Trong). Chinese and Vietnamese communities alike were destroyed in retaliation for their support of the Old Nguyen Court. After the victory, Nguyen Nhac moved his court to Hue. His younger brother Nguyen Hue continued the campaign farther north, but relegated Tonkin back to the Trinh. Their last campaign in 1783 against Prey Nokor finally drove the last of the old Nguyen court out in the run. For the rest of their campaign, they concentrated on Tonkin and left Prey-Nokor virtually unattended. If joined with the Tay-son' s brothers, the Khmer king Ramadhipti Non might have his chance to reclaim back Prey-Nokor and through cooperation might secure Cambodia from both Bangkok and Annam 's future intervention. In the contrary, his refusal screw up the whole outcome as he himself got killed during the next uprising of the Khmer people against him (The Kingdom of Syam: The Connection with Annam: The Udong' s Uprising). Of their grand scale campaign against the Nguyen courts, no evidences so far show that the Tay-son brothers had obviously neither interest on controlling Cambodia nor on Prey-Nokor. Their attack on the Cambodia was actually was to secure an alliance with Cambodia that started since the early uprising against Hue. It was an alliance that served common interest to both courts and as we shall see later, the lost of it would undermined the suzerainty of both royal courts. For the court of Udong, the setback that was due to the interference of Bangkok drove the Udong Court deeper into Bangkok's dependency. On the other hand, the set-back did not prevent Tay-son's brothers to go further in their plan.
The Fall of Annam
During the last attack of the Tay-son brothers, the last survivor of the Old Nguyen Family, Nguyen Ahn had to escape to Phu Quoc Island were his troops were reduced to eating grass and bananas but later managed to escape into Siam' s protection (TSON: The course of the Tayson uprising: The battles of Dang Trong). A new turn of events appears to shift their focus to the northern territories occupied by the Trinh. Perhaps because Nguyen-Anh had already found refuge at Thonpuri, the new Nguyen court abandoned the pursuit and turned their campaign up north. Leaving Nguyen Lu to take care of Prey-Nokor, the other two brothers went head on facing Annam. In 1786, Nguyen Hue leaded an expedition to capture back northern territories, with the assistance of a defector from the Trinh court named Nguyen Huu Chinh. Chinh was actually a general sent by one of the two Trinh brothers who fought each other to make alliance with the new Nguyen (Notes: Internal conflict of the Trinh). Their original plan was to stop at the traditional boundary between the Nguyen and the Trinh' s control; Chinh however urged Nguyen Hue to go further seizing all Trinh territories that were belonged to Champapura in the past. By the time that Nguyen Hue completed his conquest on the northern occupied territories, the Trinh' s defense system suffered casualty to the point that they could no longer resist. The next stop into Annam was soon complete virtually without resistance. Once in the capital, Nguyen Hue presented to the Viet Emperor Le-hien-tong his submission and the recognition of the Le suzerainty in return for a title of the grand general and the hand of a Le' s princess (RPCA: 10: Dissensions entre les Trinh). The Le' s emperor died the following year in 1787 and left the Annam' s throne to his grand son Le-chien-tong to succeed him. Nguyen Hue left Annam back to Hue with all the elephants full loaded with treasure wrested from the court of Le. At the time, he left his close ally Chinh to watch over a small northern city for his account. Chinh later submitted himself to Le-chien-tong and was made commander of the Le' s army. Back in Hue, Nguyen Hue heard the new and sent one of his generals, Nguyen Nham, to attack Chinh who died in combat with Nham. Nham went further to oust Le-chien-tong off the Le' s court and proclaimed himself king. In 1788, Nguyen Hue then brought his troops to unseat Nham and after killing his betrayal general he called for Le-chien-tong back to rule Annam.
Having too many bad experiences with Nguyen Hue in the past, the Le emperor did not answer to the invitation. For self-interest, it is clear that Nguyen Hue had no intention to take Tonkin under his own control. Well aware of the unfavorable sentiment of Viet population who were now in majority of the Red Delta valley, Hue had no personal ambition for his conquered country. He was wise enough to know that the Annam' s throne was not for him and in a more cautionary measure, he could not even stay in the country for long. Once again, he left Annam with treasure belonging to the Le' s palace and headed home. During the attack, the rest of the Le' s court escaped to China and requested the Chinese Emperor for help. With the strong suggestion of the vice-king of Quanton Soun-che-I, the Emperor consented to restore the Le court back in Annam.
Of his accomplishment, the Chinese Emperor rewarded him with the title of the "Valiant tactician" from the Chinese court. Blinded by the need of more recognition, Soun-che-I' s ambition drove him to commit a serious mistake as he prepared for the southern campaign against the new Nguyen stronghold at Hue. Well informed of the Chinese intention, Nguyen Hue launched a surprise attack on Annam that caught him and the Chinese army off guard. While everyone escaped back to China, Soun-che-I submitted himself to the court of Peking for punishment of his misjudgment leading to his defeat. To avoid more confrontation with the Chinese court, Nguyen Hue stayed to take control of Tonkin and proceeded to file a petition to the Chinese Court to rule Annam as a vassal of China. As we shall see, the sudden change of policy had proved to create even more crises to the Tay-son brothers. The three brothers understood quite well that Annam was off limited to them. What they had originally in mind was not the control of Annam, but the liberation of Champapura (Notes: The fight against Annam), but the refusal of Udong in joining the campaign left them with no other choices. It turned out that this seemingly small set-back created harmful effect to the Tay-son brothers more than expected. Unattended, the city of Prey Nokor became later the regrouping ground of the Old Nguyen Court to launch their own attacks on the Tay-son brothers whose fall gave a chance to new birth of Vietnam.
THE RISE AND FALL OF THE TAYSON' s BROTHERS
In the modern history of Vietnam, the uprising of the Tay-son brothers and the subsequent rise and fall of the New Nguyen Court was treated totally as a Vietnamese affair. As we had identified that they were of Cham royalty, we shall prove also the history of the New Nguyen court was closely connected with the overall politic of Southeast Asia. Just as the Khmer-Cham consortium started to bear fruit, the formation of Thonpuri created another setback in the total recovering of the Khmer legacy back in Southeast Asia. To make the matter worst, its revert the dissolution of the old Nguyen's court back to life that otherwise through the exploit of the Tay-son brothers, Annam already ceased to exist.
The Intervention of Thonpuri
The rise of the new Siam court at Thonpuri undermined the stability of the new court of Udong and the suzerainty of the Tay-son brothers. Not only that they brought Prah Ang Non back to challenge his brother' s reign at Udong, they also help the sole survivor of the old Nguyen court Nguyen-Anh, to come back challenging the three Tay-son brothers. Since its early formation, Thonpuri went head-on in the competition of the new International Sea trade. Their eastern venture brought them in contact with the falling court of the Nguyen family in turmoil trying to escape the massacre of the Tay-son brothers. With the help of the Chinese Mac Cau and the intervention of the French missionary, Pigneau de Behaine, Nguyen Anh found himself taking refuge at Thonpuri. Without hesitation, Taksin and his successor Chao Chakri allowed him to take refuge at Bangkok and promised to restore back the old Nguyen court. It was the formation of a consortium in the mission to set the falling court of the old Nguyen court back in power and to promote Bangkok to have a full control of Siam. After taking Nguyen-Anh under his wing, Taksin ordered the court of Udong that was now under his Khmer suitor King Prah Ang Non, to take side with the Old Nguyen Court. The Burmese control of Northern Siam and the subsequent Burmese attacks on his court forced Taksin to fight for the northern control. In the campaign against the Lao country, Taksin' s pressure to the Khmer King Prah Ang Non for support cost the latter his life during the uprising of his own people against him (The Kingdom of Syam: The Connection with prey-Nokor: The Udong' s uprising). An Udong' s court member named Chaopha Mo, requested the support of the new Nguyen court at Prey-Nokor to join in with his family' s revolt against the King. After the unsuccessful retaliation in 1778 against Udong, the Tay-son brothers withdrew their troops and returned back to Prey-Nokor. They left Cambodia only to return later when requested by Chaopha Mo to support the Khmer uprising against King Prah Ang Non. Together, they managed to subdue Prah Ang Non and after ridding him off along with his immediate family, took control of the court of Udong. The incidence, as we shall see, created a deep split of the court of Udong into two antagonist factions. One side that was leaded by Chaopha Mo maintained good relationship with the Tay-son brothers and continued on to take control of the Udong court. On the premise that the next King was still too young, Chaopha Mo made himself the head of the Udong' s court. The other side that was led by two old members of the slain king Prah Ang Non, named Chaopha Su and Chaopha Ben, plotted to unseat the regency of Chaopha Mo. In an elaborate scheme, they managed to kill off Chaopha Mo along with other members of his family. One of his younger brothers, Chaopha Ten was spared due to circumstances. He continued on working with the Tay-son brothers in the hope of recovering back the control over the court of Udong. From this time on, the Khmer chronicle had made its clear that the Annamite court of which Chaopha Ten would find support was of the new Nguyen court. As we had argued, their settlement at Binh-dinh and their exploit were closely connected with the Khmer court of Prah Keo Pha and his son Prah Sothat, it is not a surprise that Chao-pha Ten, a faithful member of that court, received full support from the Tay-son brothers. The Tay-son brothers who were themselves struggling to set control of the whole Vietnam, could not come themselves to the rescue. Nevertheless, they were able to find an alternated solution for the crises. In consistency with the fact that they were of Cham royalty, they induced support from local Cham communities inside Cambodia to help the distraught Chaopha Ten and his clan. Seeing his safety worsening under the Cham' s attack, Chaopha Ben decided to escape to Siam. He brought along with him, the young Khmer King Prah Ang Eng and all his caretakers to live under the protection of the Siam King at Bangkok. This is the first time that we see hight ranking court members used foreign help to carry on their own rivalry that in the long-run would jeopardize the suzerainty of the Khmer court. At that time, Bangkok had already established itself to take on the role of Ayudhya in the past. After the submission of northern Siam and successful campaigns against Burma at the western front, Bangkok was now poised to take care of Annam' s affair against the Tay-son brothers. The submission of Chaopha Ben along with the court of Udong moreover could be put to good use to support its eastern campaign against the new Nguyen Court of Hue. In the campaign, the Siam King sent many of his officers to lead Siam troops by land to fight directly against Hue. At the same time, he ordered Chaopha Ben to lead a faction of the Siam army to pass through Udong and took the opportunity to drive Chaopha Ten and his clan out of power. With the Khmer troops whom he captured from Udong, Chaopha Ben joined the Siam campaign to liberate Hue from the Tay-son brothers.
The Impact on the Udong Court
During the fight at the South of Prey-Nokor, one of the Siam commanders apparently yielded to the Tay-son brothers by releasing all war prisoners back to the latter. It was not clear that he had done it in showing off Siam' s army superiority or in contrast, showing sympathetic advance to the Tay-son brothers. In neither case, the Siam King was please. Upon hearing the speculation, the Siam King pulled his troops back to Bangkok. The next campaign was conducted through the sea route and this time it included both Nguyen-Anh and Mac Tien-thu in taking parts in the fighting. Fist, they stopped at Ha-tien and Mac Cau was assigned to go gathering food and human supply from his old domain to join in the campaign. Arriving at the outskirts of Prey-Nokor, it was Nguyen-Anh's turn to go on land rallying Viet communities to be on his side. During an attack on the New Nguyen's court's stronghold, the Tay-son' s army managed to besiege the Siam fleet that stored all armament and food supplies from the Siam army that went aground to fight on land. Unable to go back to their fleet, the Siam army withdrew themselves and took the long road by land until they reached Udong. There they were met with their Khmer-Siam's compatriots who were captured by the Tay-son's brothers and placed under the command of Chaopha Ten to go after the fleeing Siam army. Nevertheless, they managed to defeat the Khmer army and in a twist of fate, Chaopha Ten found himself fleeing Udong. Chased out by his rival Chapopha Ben, he went out to join with remaining Cham troops at Phnom Penh. At Bangkok, the Siam court had to put its eastern campaign on hold because it was tied up again with Burmese incursion. During the fight against Burma, Nguyen-Anh was closely watched and brought along to all the battlefields that the Siam King had to go. He was not allowed to carry on anything of his own campaign against the Tay-son brothers. Frustrated with the slow development, Nguyen-Anh decided to break off from Bangkok and run away and went to Udong to meet Chaopha Ben for a joint campaign against the Tay-son brothers. He saw in making an alliance with the Khmer suitor Chaopha Ben much more effective and beneficial than with the Siam court. With the help of Chaopha Ben, he went on mobilizing Viet and even Khmer communities at Prey-Nokor to join the campaign. While Chaopha Ben and his clan had made the last attempt to drive all Cham communities out from Phnom Penh, Nguyen-Anh made his move to attack Prey-Nokor. Assisted by internal Viet communities, Nguyen Anh took control of Prey-Nokor with little resistance. The victory, as we shall see, marked the start of the Tay-son brothers' decline. The lost of Prey-Nokor to Nguyen Ahn would soon lead to the formation of a stronger base of Viet army for the next fight with Hue. In his own campaign against the Cham at Phnom Penh, Chaopha Ben managed to capture his rival Chaopha Ten and thinking that the Siam King PutyotphaCholalok would be please with him, he sent Chaopha Ten to Bangkok awaiting the final decision by the Siam King. Little he knew that in the eye of the latter, helping Nguyen Anh to retrieve back HUe was not what the Syam King had only in mind. It was the control of Hue and subsequently the control of the sea route that the Siam King had actually planned all along. Now he had to abandon the plan since Nguyen Anh already sit on the throne of Hue without his own intervention. At the mean time, Chaopha Ben attempted to set the country back in order and almost achieved it. His tough management style however alienated against the people. When some court members sent petition to Bangkok for the return of the young Khmer King Prah Ang Eng back to Udong, the Siam king agreed to the petition without hesitation. To the disappointment of Chaopha Ben, his rival Chaopha Ten was also sent back with the Khmer Court. More to his disbelief, Chaopha Ten came not as a prisoner but as one of the high court officials to the new King Prah Ang Eng. Needless to say, he was fearful of his own safety in the new court of Udong. Astute as he was, he then made a stunt maneuvering that became another iconic event of the new history of Cambodia. irst, he requested the Siam King to move him out from Udong and install him as the governor of the two northeastern Khmer provinces, Battambang and Siemreap. To remove himself further from the authority of Chaopha Ten, he requested that the two provinces were put under the control of Bangkok. This time, the Siam King PutyotphaCholalok was real please with him and was very much delighted to fulfill his request (Notes: The lost of Battambang and Siemreap to Siam). In 1795, Chaopha Ben got the best of what he asked for. The Siam King secured him as a warlord king in control of the two khmer provinces that became since under the protection of the Siam court.
The Fall of the Tay-son Brothers
Upon reading the petition of the Tay-son brothers, the Chinese Emperor granted investiture to the youngest of the three brothers, Nguyen-Hue to rule Annam. At the same time he awarded to Le-chien-tong, a post of a functionary position at his court. As the Annam valley was already inhabited by Viet people, Nguyen-Hue found out that his rule over Tonkin was then totally depending on China. Becoming vassal of Peking, he has to send tribute to the Chinese court that became a more and more a costly obligation over time. The Tay-son brothers soon found themselves suffocated under the Chinese vassalage and to make the matter worst, he could not count on his brothers to help him getting out of the trap. Nguyen-Hue reigned at Tonkin for only a few years and died in 1792. His son Nguyen-quang-bang was set to succeed his father at the age of only 15 years. As expected, he sent the petition to Peking in 1793 with a special tribute of ten lingoes of gold. The Chinese emperor sent the young king the investiture, but made necessary precaution for the worst that could happen in the backing a young king of a disturbing country. He sent a senior court member named Tcheng-lin, the chief judge of the province of Quang-xi to investigate the condition of new Annam. With the reassurance, the emperor renewed his support for both the new Nguyen courts of Hue and Annam. In 1796, Nguyen-quang-bang died in Pekin while heading an envoy to bring an extraordinary tribute to thank the emperor of felicitation,. The emperor gave him proper honor and went to the extra length of ordering Chinese officers to carry the corpse back to Annam. While appreciating the hight price tribute from the new Nguyen courts, the Chinese emperor also purportedly ignored sinister practices of how the new Nguyen courts were to conduct their business. Like his father had done before him, Nguyen-quang-tang ruled Annam by the force of his arms. When he requested investiture from Peking, the country was already in turmoil. By now, their true identity was already in the open and the Viets were rallying against them. Back in Hue where his uncle Nguyen-nhac ruled, the crisis already took the upper hand of the country. By this time, Nguyen-Anh already staged a comeback with the support of Siam and the French missionary. He staged his next campaign at the city of Prey-Nokor where a without Udong' s intervention, the city was left virtually unattended. A former general of the old Nguyen court named Do Thanh-Nhom (Notes: Do Thanh-Nhon) took the opportunity to move in and with the help of the Viet settlers, he retook the control of the city. He then transformed the city as a strategic location for their next campaigns against the Tay-son brothers. Nevertheless, Nguyen-Anh could never succeed without the help of Bangkok. At that moment in time, the consortium of the Udong court of King Ramadhipdi Non with Bangkok already made its big impact on the new Nguyent court' s prospective outlook. With a new influx of Chinese migrants, Ha-tien flourished under the Khmer rulers Prah Narayraja and Prah Sothat to become a major seaport of the southern sea. When Prah Narayraja decided to submit Udong to the King Ramadhipdi Non who himself was a close ally of Thonpuri, Ha-tien became a strong competitor of both Hue and Tonkin's seaport. Commercial ships trying to avoid Chinese pirates no longer stopped at Hue and Tonkin while heading directly to Chinese seaports. After repeatedly requesting the control of Quansxi and Quangnam without success, the three Tay-son brothers was about to realize of their grim destiny. As the revenue dipped, Nguyen-nhac of Hue and his nephew Nguyen-quang-bang were recurring into desperate measures. To make-up with the costly tribute to the Chinese court, they decided to sponsor the Chinese pirates as piracy became now their only source of income. Needless to say, the new venture alienated further the Chinese Emperor who, instead of coming to the rescue, took the long stand awaiting the campaign of Nguyen-Anh to realize. We know later that this Chinese measure took place because the Quing Dynasty also had its own ambition about the control of Southern Sea trade. As theirs predecessors the Ming Dynasty had failed Champapura in the past, evidences show that the measures of restricting foreign merchant ships to make direct intercourse with China drove the new Nguyen Court to bankruptcy. Evidences show that the same measures also applied to the Old Nguyen Court who with the help of Bangkok and the French missionary, succeeded to succumb the three Tay-son brothers for good. Granting Nguyen Anh to form Vietnam, the Quing Dynasty kept the same policy enforced until the colonial era. After restraining Macao from the monopoly of the Portuguese, evidence shows that the Quing took on the South Chinese trade itself as the few commercial ships that traded with Mallaka were mostly Chinese.
br>THE BIRTH OF VIETNAM
Almost annihilated by the Tay-son brothers, the Nguyen' s court found in foreign intervention another chance to recover. The involvement of the French missionary allowed the next members of the Nguyen family to carry through the last phase of the Nqam-tien campaign over the Khmer territory of Prey-Nokor. Once again, circumstances had played important role in favor of Confucianism' s practitioner who became the mastermind of the Yin and Yang cosmogony. The birth of Vietnam, as we shall see, was actually the prelude to the new age of French Colonial rule in Southeast Asia. At the mean time, the French missionary Pigneau de Behaine would find out the hard way that Vietnamese interest in Christianity could not be compared to their many centuries of Confucian practices.
The Reign of Gia Long (1802-1820)
Barely escaping death, Nguyen-Anh found help from a French missionary, Pigneau de Behaine who took upon himself the mission of restoring back the OLd Nguyen court. In 1787, Pigneau de Behaine went to France carrying Nguyen-Anh' s son, to the court of Louis XVI, seeking military assistance for restoring Nguyen-Anh back to power. Through his effort, a Franco-Vietnamese treaty was signed. It provided French military aid to the Nguyen court, in exchange for a grant of monopoly of external trade, the cession of Puolo Condore island and the port of Danang to the French. The French Government directed its colonial governor of Pondicherry (in south India) to provide the military assistance. Perhaps because of internal crisis happening in France, The French governor failed to carry through the order. De Behaine took the mission on himself to gather troops and armament for the Nguyen Anh' s campaign. He raised 300 volunteers and funds in Pondicherry just enough to purchase several shiploads of arms. He arrived in Vietnam in 1789, barely a month before the fall of Bastille. Before his arrival, Nguyen-Anh went on to capture Saigon in 1788 where he found support from fellow Vietnamese settlers (Notes: Viet Settlers at Prey-Nokor). After De Behaine' s arrival, they went to conquer Hue in 1801 and Hanoi a year later. It appears that the French missionary help was marginal, but for a sole survival of a completely destroyed court to recover and to take back the control of the country in a short time, Nguyen-Anh must to be backed by a strong support. Through his associate, the Chinese Mac Cau, Nguyen-Anh himself went to stay and requested protection from the new Siam court of Thonpuri. But their intervention was not gone beyond Hue' s southern province of Ha-tien, and their campaigns against the Tay-son brothers ended mostly in defeat. At the contrary, the Bishop Pigneau de Behaine, who himself participated in the military campaign and died in 1799 was virtual the main support of Nguyen-Anh. The fact that he himself participated in the campaign tells us one way or the other that he was not just a priest, but a colonizer. In a hostile country against Christianity, he must already build a defense system to safeguard his missionary work on the ground of the new converted Viet Christians. Evidences also show that he knew to procure himself with military supplies and volunteers without much help from the French government. His personal relationship with Nguyen-Anh was crucial in initiating the latter into the western style of governing and military foundation of which Vietnam still inherited until today. It is true that his effort in the court of France yielded less result than he expected. His initiative however created interests among French colonialists to come joining the new Nguyen court, bringing along their talent and know how to build the new county (IHIF: Preface: la France en Indochine: P. 8). They helped Vietnam in the construction of Vauban-type forts, casting better and larger cannons and creating a navy. Most of all, his presence and death in the campaign shows how deep he was committed to his cause (Notes: The purpose of the French' s mission). With the help of the French Bishop Pigneau de Behaine, Nguyen-Anh went on eliminating the Tay-son brothers out of the way. In just a few years, they retook control of Prey-Nokor and went ahead to capture both Hue and Annam. In 1802, Nguyen-Anh proclaimed himself Emperor of Annam with the title of Gia Long. The title was meant to represent the unification of Annam with the South Annam. Formed by a contraction of "Gia Ding", the name of the region around Saigon and Thanh Long, that of region around Hanoi, the title was to represent the birth of the new kingdom called Vietnam.
Nguyen-Phac-Anh begged the emperor to give him a name for the new country that was just unified. The Majesty then made a decree changing the Name of Annam to Yue-nan (Viet-nam) that referred to the whole of Cochin-china of today
In exchange, Nguyen-Anh promised to pay tribute to Peking and requested the Chinese Emperor to make his demand.
The emperor made a decree that, according to decision made in 1792, Viet-nam should sent a tribute to Peking every two years and came to rend homage every four years. (HRCA: 35: Le Viet-nam)
Looking back, neither the crushing of the Tay-son brothers nor the full control of the South was done with much support from China. At the contrary, the help of the French Bishop De Behaine and perhaps other French missionaries were the main contributor to the victory.
The Viet Emperor Minh-Mang (1820-1841)
To Nguyen-Anh, China was always the source of his inspiration and it was the Confucianism that enabled him to make the best of the situation. The practical concept of the rise and fall of the Yin-Yang energies enabled him to benefit from both worlds and still worked wonder during the formation of the new Vietnam. In anytime soon, Christianity could ever replace the practicality of Confucianism and Gia-long would make sure that his son also understood it. To his expectation, his son Ming Mang was an ardent devotee of Confucianism and eager to apply the Chinese archaic ruler-ship over the new conquered territory (Notes: The Nguyen' s royal house). In clearing up the way for the next step of Vietnamization, Ming-manh had put in place a harsh policy designed to crush both rebels and missionary works.
As the traditional center of the Nguyen power, Hue became the capital of his New Kingdom. Tonkin that was the capital of the Trinh in the past became now North Vietnam. Prey-Nokor was on the other hand still in dispute with the Khmer court of Udong. Under Gia Long, evidences show that the two river' s deltas of Annam and Cochinchina were still not fully controlled by the Nguyen court (Notes: Kamboja Krom). With the French colonization in the horizon, Minh-Mang came to realize that he must to complete his father' s work as soon as possible. He knew quite well about the hostile situation that he was set into as it was apparently obvious, even to the foreigners (Notes: The rebellious mood against Ming-mang). Still he continued on his father' s work and did not hesitate to use what it took to win over the setback. First he started to clean-up Prey-Nokor from any residual Khmer authorities, in making it into a full-blown Vietnamese colony. Many of the provinces south of Prey-nokor were still under local authorities who were fighting for their own autonomy. One of such authorities was the governor Kuy, a prominent Khmer governor of the province Phrah Trapeang (TraVinh of today) who alongside with other Khmer authorities fought to repulse back the occupation of Minh Mang. Completely cut off from Udong, they were however fighting for the losing battle. Knowing that he could not win to Viet army under Ming-Manh' s generals, the governor went on offering his life in exchange for the promises to keep Khmer institution in tack during the next Vietnamization of his province (Kuy: The ideology of the Governor Kuy). With the support of the French missionaries, Ming-Manh and his generals won battle over battle. After driving the Siamese troops out from Ha-tien, he continued on extending his Campaign into the whole of Cochin China without any setbacks. His action however started to meet with resistance from an unexpected front. The objection came from the French missionaries who, being aware of Ming-mang' s real intention, were becoming more and more alarmed of his Vietnamization. In a twist of fate, they became the next targets of persecution by the Viet Emperor. In 1833, a French missionary, Father Marchand, was suspected in the involvement of a rebellion led by Le Van Khoi. In retaliation, Minh-mang issued a decree ordered churches to be demolished and closed all his ports to European shipping. Evidences however show that the restriction the sea trade to European ships might have been dictated by the Chinese policy. Instilled since the Tay-Son Brothers rule, the policy on monopolizing the sea route between China and Mallaka continued (The French Indochina: The French Cochincina: The French invasion). During all that time, the resistance of the indigenous people who were mostly Khmer and Cham of the lowland of Cochin China did not lessen. If the policy of Ming-Manh was harsh in regard to the missionaries, it was even harsher in regard to the non-Viet population of the new country. As we recall back, they were the rebels who took part in the Tay-son uprising that almost annihilated the Nguyen family. They were rebellious still, as far as the Vietnamization continued. The same way that they have done to destroy all the missionary works, the Nguyen court went on committing genocide to the natives. According to oral tradition, the ethnic Khmer and Cham suffered the worst mistreatment ever during the reign of the Viet emperor Ming-manh (Notes: The Vinh-the canal' s account). As they could not stand any longer, both Cham and Khmer natives escaped into Cambodia and neighboring countries. As a result, the Nguyen court got what they wanted for their next mission was to deplete the native and to make room for the next Viet immigrants to move in. It is important to note that the next Nguyen' s court continued on their harsh treatment over the natives, even under the French' s rule (The French Indochina: The French Cochinchina: The Viet re-population). During the internal conflict of the Khmer court, Minh-Mang took the opportunity to send his military personal to run the Khmer court of Udong. His new endeavor resulted in landing a huge influx of Vietnamese migrants inside Cambodia making the Khmer country even more vulnerable to his Vietnamization.
- BViet: The Birth of Vietnam, by Keith Weller Taylor
- PCCPA: Bulletin de l'Ecole française d'Extrême-Orient Année 1923 Volume 23 Numéro 1 pp. 136-264: La première conquête chinoise des pays annamites (IIIe siècle avant notre ère), By Léonard Aurousseau
- NCHAO: Histoire particuliere du Nan-Tchao, by Yang Chen, Translated by Camille Sainson
- CRC: JA: Chronique Royale Du Cambodge, by Ochna Vong Sarpech Nong, French Translation by M. Francis Garnier
- CKH: The Chronicle of Khmer heroes, by Sot Eng
- HRCA: Histoire des relations da la Chine avec l'Annam-Vietnam du XVIe au XIXe siecle: d'apres des documents Chinois, Translated by G. Devaria)
- MPA:Histoire Moderne du Pays D' Annam (1592-1820), M. Maybon
- HNV: History of the Nguyen dynasty of Vietnam, By Dr. Liem T. Vo, B. Sc Hons
- TSON: The Tay son Uprising, By George Dutton
- IHIF: Iconographie Historique de L' Indochine Francaise, Documents sur l' histoire de l'intervention Francaise en Indochine, By Paul Boudet et Andre Masson
- VTTA: Vietnam Trials and Tribulations of a Nation, By D.R.SarDesai
- VRFI: The Vietnamese Response to French Intervention, By Mark W. McLeod
- MSA: The Making of Southeast Asia, by G. Coedes
- HSEA: A history of Southeast Asia, by D.G.E. Hall
- EEC:Embassy to the Eastern Courts of Cochin-China, Siam and Muscat in the U.S. Sloop-of-War Peacock, David Geisinger, Commander, By Edmund Roberts
- LKam:The Low Land Kamboja' power without the Khmer, by Traigchat Buth
- Kuy:The Governor Kuy, by Keo Suvath
- ACV:L'Annexion du Cambodge par les Vietnamiens au XIX Siecle, by Kin Sok
- ANGKA:Who was Angka? (Angka Chea Narna?), by Kim Thy Ouy
1558-1613: Nguyen Hoang ruled over the court of Hue; 1615: A new mission, specially to take care of Cochin-china and Annam was formed; 1648-1687: The reign of Nuyen Phuc Tan; 1730: First uprising at Prey-Nokor; The Tay-son brothers captured Hue; 1750: The French adventurer, Pierre Poivre visited Hue; 1787: Pigneau de Behaine started campaigning for Nguyen-Anh; 1789: The fall of the Bastille; 1789: Nguyen-Hue ascended the throne of Annam; 1793: Louis XVI was guillotined; 1788-1802: Nguyen-Anh (Gia Long) won over the Tay-son Brothers; 1820-1840: The reign of Nguyen Phuc Dam (Minh-Mang); 1882: The last Cham king Po Con Can escaped to Camdodia; 1694-: The reign of King Ang Eng (Udong); 1806-: The reign of King Ang Chan (Udong); 1835-: The reign of King Ang Mei (Udong); 1845-: The reign of King Ang Duong (Udong)
- The Subduction of the Quin by the Hans
The Quins were known to build the Great Wall to prevent the attacks of the nomads of the steppe on his kingdom. Apparently the Great wall did really stopped the Yueh-Shih to invade China. However, it did stop them from infiltrating into the Quin politic through the back door policy. One among common practices that were seen happening later in the Viet history was the hand over of Viet women into the court that was target to be subverted.
- Xiang-Lin vs Lin-Yi
According to Vietnamese source, King An Duang fled south to Nhat-Nam (in Chinese Je- Nan) where he built a new country of Xiang-Lin that became the progenator of Prey-Nokor (Lin-Yi). Ma-Yuan however pushed Lin-Yi down south after transforming Xiang-Lin to be a district of of Dai-Viet that was going to become the modern Vietnamese province of Nghe-An (). )
- The Annamite People
As its reference implicates, Annam was supposed to be at the south of Anyang. Sinology often mistook Japanese as kinsmen of Central Chinese Annamete People that makes them both as kinsmen of the Han Chinese. However, the association of the Wu dynasty with Japan might have been more plausible. It happened when the Han subjugated the Wu court driving some of its members to take refuge in Japan. On the other hand, the Japanese people were more likely native of Japan and were connected (at least geographically) with Manchuria where the Manchou Dynasty later ruled. At the mean time, the Annamite was referring to both the Han and the Kinh people of Central China whom under the Han establishment, were considered as the true Chinese people.
- The Work of Ma-Yuan
The work of Ma-Yuan was mistaken by modern scholars to be of the Han Dynasty against the Yueh communities of the Hong River, and that the two Trung sisters were portrayed as two Vietnamese heroes to rise up rebelling against the Han. Some Vietnamese scholars however are still skeptical about women able to lead men of many pre-prefectures to follow theirs cause (BViet: Appendix K: The Trung Sisters in the Literature of Later Centuries: P334). Most importantly, the proclamation to be theirs queen was never been heard in male dominant Vietnamese tradition. It proves that the two sisters were not Vietnamese but family members of the Tay-Wu king who was killed by the Han Chinese.
- The Yueh Migration Theory
Aurousseau based his theory of the origin of the Vietnamese people on the Yueh migration theory. The theory states that the Yueh people of southern China (including Vietnamese) were actually migrating from the north. The theory was rejected by Claude Madrelle with the supports of some colleague (BViet: Appendix E: The Yeh Migration theory: pp.314-315). In his article of 1937, he rejected the Yueh Migration theory based on the natural obstacles exerted by the indigenous people. As we argued that the mass Yueh migration was organized by the Emperial Hans, these obstacles were not enough to stop its course.
- Yueh vs Yue People
Yueh is the short form of the word Yueh-Shih or Yushi meaning lunar eclipse. It uses two Chinese characters to denote it. One is the character Yue meaning moon and the next character is shi. While the Yueh-Shih is a reference to Central Asian people who practice the Lunar Eclipse Culture, the Yue is a reference to the Moon (or Meru) Culture that were implanted on the Kun-Lun People during its transition to the east. Of theirs early settlement among the Yue or Kun-Lun People, the Chao-yueh-Shih were in small numbers and were absorbed into the mainstream of the native people (Champapura: The Impact on the Tian Legacy: The Fall of Hiong-Wang). That should not be confused with the mass migration of the Yueh people that continued long after the displacement of the Yue natives from the coastal region.
- Ancient Leadership and the Make-up of theirs Dominion
New findings show that It was not through mass migration, as mostly thought that culture would spread from one place to another in the ancient past. Power elite moving around with their own court were actually seen the real catalyst of cultural implantation around the world. From the findings, scholars rejected mass migration as the source cause of diverse cultural transplantation in the past. The practices were seen consistently applied in ancient development when power elite established new kingdoms as part of a decentralized cakravetin Empire. Precaution however needs to be made when inferring the same model to recent development. In the Vietnamese case, we support Aurousseau' s Yueh migration theory because the Hans, like modern colonists, used mass migration as a tool to dilute the resistance of the natives and to use them as human resources to help exploiting native resources.
- Historical Facts about the Tay-son Brothers
The Chronicle of Khmer heroes' s compiler, Sot Eng, appears to have no knowledge that the Annamite court of Hue between 1775 to 1802 was actually referring to the court of Nguyen Nhac (the eldest brother of the Tay-son brother). Due to this deficiency, he identified all the rulers of Hue in the ancient Khmer source as the Annamite King Ya-long. With limited information, he could not link the exploit of the Tay-son brothers to the emergence of the new Nguyen court at Hue. On the same mistake, he referred the title Tien-ti or Tien-voun (Tien-vamsa) to be of Gia Long. We had the reason to believe that the title was inherited by the three Tay-son brothers from their ancestors reigning over Sri Vijaya (Bin Ding),
- The Tay-son' s ambition on Cambodia
It appears that Nguyen Nhac had conveyed to western acquaintances of their ambition on Cambodia through a military invasion
The Tay Son had ambitions of seizing Khmer territory since at least 1778, when Nguyen Nhac confided his long-term military ambitions to Charles Chapman during the Englishman' s visit to the Tay-son capital. (TSON: Tay Son relations with Non-Vietnam Ethnic Group: The Tay Son and the Khmer)
This military campaign was in fact carried on against Udong in 1776, but was only a punitive attack on the court of King Ramadhipti Non because the latter refuse to send Khmer troops in protecting Prey-Nokor. After a short attack on Phnom Penh, the Chams pulled back their troops to Vietnam and finished off the court of Hue.
- Do Thanh-Nhon
There are conflicting account about a general of the Nguyen court named Do Thanh-Nhom who helped Nguyen-Ahn to take back control of prey-Nokor. Taking the opportunity of the absence of the Three Tay-son brothers, he raised supports from the leftover Viet communities and once again regrouped the old Nguyen court. For unknown reason, the recovery was not complete. According to the Vietnamese sources, Nguyen-Anh later murdered Do Thanh-Nhom and had to face the next attack of the three Tay-son brothers by himself.
- Internal Conflict of the Trinh
Trinh-dong, the chief of the Trinh, died in 1786. His two sons, Trinh-tong and Trinh-can fought each other. Tring-can sent to new Nguyen, in the principality of Quang-nam, one of his ministers named Cong-chinh to make an alliance against his brother Trinh-tong, whom he wanted to eliminate. (RPCA: 10: Dissensions entre les Trinh)
- The Lost of Battamabang and Siemreap to Siam
Under repetitive pressure from Bangkok, the Khmer king Ang Eng at udong gave in to the demand of the Siam King. Like the early delegation of Prey-Nokor to the Nguyen court, the ceding was supposed to be temporary. In his reply letter to the Siam King, Prah Ang Eng clearly indicated that the accord applied only for the reign of king PutyotphaCholalok.
Prah Chao Krong Kampujadhibti agreed that the requested provinces to report to Krong Thep Puri (Bangkok) only during the reign of King PutyotphaCholalok who is our king father (foster father). After the end of the King father' s reign, we would request all the provinces back under Cambodia like before.
The province of Battambang, MahaNokor (Siemreap), Somnat, Chongkal, and maugn Risi, were then delegated to Siam in 1795.
- Viet Settlers at Prey-Nokor
Under the pact done by Nguyen Phuc Tan with the court of Udong, Viet settlements were allowed since the time that Nguyen Phuc Tan made a deal with the court of Udong, by sending his daughter to marry King Jaya Chetha II.
- The Purpose of the French' s Mission
Perhaps he saw in his Vietnamese Christian converts as better citizens that would dominate and westernize Cochin China in the near future, and it was his solemn duty to make that to happen.
- The Fight against Annam
The un-subordination of one of his generals, Nguyen-nham, and the suspicion of Le Chien Tong, under protection of the Chinese Emperor complicated the matter. When Nguyen-nham tried to make himself king of Annam, Nguyen-Hue quickly took him down but it did not make Le Chien Tong to trust him again.
- Kamboja Krom
Until the recent development of Kamboja Krom' formation, there were never peaceful arrangement between Vietnamese government and ethnic Khmer of Kochin-china. From oral sources there were uprisings and rebellious activity from the start that were met with bloody retaliation from the court of Hue.
- The Strategic Importance of the Port of Prey-Nokor
It was this strategic importance that motivated the French in involving into Indochinese affair. Knowing that the Mekong River reached the southern tip of the Mainland China, the French could use it to bypass altogether other English or Dutch controlled maritime ports of Southern China.
- The Nguyen' s Royal House
It is questionable that the Nguyen' s court had anything of its own tradition. As far as the administration was concerned, it was an exact zion of the court of China.
The government of Cochin China is thoroughly despotic, being framed in close imitation of that of China. The sovereign, who, till lately, bore the title of King and who still pays a nominal tribute to China under that title, assumes, among his own subjects, and with all foreign countries, except China, the Chinese title of Hwang-te (emperor), with the peculiar attribute, "sacred" or "divine", commonly used by the court of Peking. (EEC: Chapter XV: Mandarin' s House)
- The Vinh-the Canal' s Account
Retained as the Khmer of Kamboja Krom' tradition, the oral of Vinh-the' s account recalled the worst treatment that the Khmer communities in Cochin-china had to endure under the Nguyen King Ming-manh. It was happening during the digging of the canal of Vinh-theby Khmer workers mobilized by the Nguyen court. The following version of the incident is retrieved from the book "Angka Chea Narna?" (Who was Angka?), authored by a native of Kamboja Krom who took refuge in Cambodia during the late stage of the French colonization (ANGKA).
From 1815 to 1820, Yuan (Vietnamese) mobilized Khmer Kamboja Krom for forced labor to dig a canal. Of length 53 Km, of width 33 m, and of depth 2.60 m, from the province of Mat Chrouk to the northern coast of the city of Peam, the canal set the frontier between Central Kamboja and Kamboja Krom. The canal is named Vinh-the canal. During the dig, if any of the Khmer workers could not work, Yuan ordered each one of them to dig a hole to bury himself up to the neck in a group of three. They used them as the three prongs to support a container and boiled hot water to make the Tea Ong (a specific brand of Vietnamese tea). When any one of the heads tilted, the hot water would spill on them. Since then, there is a slogan to remember the ordeal that says "Beware, do not spill the Tea Ong".
The terror was meant to scare other Khmers from rebelling or to move out from the region. When the work was done, the Khmer workers had all been exterminated.
At the end of the years 1820, after the canal Vinh-the was done, Yuan tied all the Khmer workers and laid them on the bed of the canal then they let the water flowing on them.