Northern Eurasia, 1500–1800
After studying this chapter students should:
1. Understand the roles of the Jesuits and the East India Companies in the development of cultural exchange
and trade between Europe and Eastern Eurasia.
2. Be able to use the concept of "land-based empires" to analyze the territorial expansion, the economic and
political structures, and the foreign relations of the Russian and Qing empires.
3. Be able to describe the causes and symptoms of the decline of the Qing state in the eighteenth century.
4. Be able to describe the Tokugawa political system and explain why and how the decentralized political
structure contributed simultaneously to economic growth and to the weakening of the Tokugawa state.
I. Japanese Reunification
A. Civil War and the Invasion of Korea and Manchuria, 1500–1603
1. In the twelfth century, with imperial unity dissolved, Japan came under the control of a number of
regional warlords called
2. Warfare among the daimyo was common, and in 1592 the most powerful of these warlords, Hideyoshi,
chose to lead an invasion of Korea.
3. Although the Korean and Japanese languages are closely related, the dominant influence on Yi dynasty
Korea was China.
4. Despite the creative use of technological and military skill, the Koreans and their Chinese allies were
defeated by the Japanese.
5. After Hideyoshi's death in 1598, the Japanese withdrew their forces and, in 1606, made peace with Korea.
6. The Japanese withdrawal left Korea in disarray and the Manchu in a greatly strengthened position.
B. The Tokugawa Shogunate, 1603–1800
1. In the late 1500s Japan’s Ashikaga Shogunate had lost control and the country had fallen into a period of
chaotic wars between local lords; a new shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu, brought all the local lords under the
administration of his Tokugawa Shogunate in 1600.
2. The Tokugawa Shogunate gave loyal regional lords rice lands close to the shogunal capital in central
Japan, while those lords who had not been supporters of the Tokugawa were given undeveloped lands at the
northern and southern extremes of the islands. The Japanese emperor remained in Kyoto but had no
political power. This political structure had an important influence on the subsequent development of the
3. The decentralized system of regional lords meant that Japan developed well-spaced urban centers in all
regions, while the shogun’s requirement that the regional lords visit Edo frequently stimulated the