China and Inner Asia

Organized Panel Session

1 - Generals, Literati, and Friends of the Jesuits: Mapping the Philippines in 17th and 18th century China

Saturday, July 7
8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: Mahogany, First Floor

When exploring the worldview of Chinese cartographers, the Philippines present a valuable case study due to its distinct shape, and its strategic location between Asia and the Americas. Traditional Chinese “world maps” show a large China at the center surrounded by small foreign countries. One of these countries were the Philippines, usually depicted as one island designated as “Luzon.” Starting in the late Ming, Europeans, especially the Jesuits, introduced to China new maps showing the Philippines as an archipelago. Nevertheless, Chinese mapmakers continued to produce maps following the traditional design until the late Qing. Chinese scholars of the 17th and 18th centuries such as Cheng Bai’er 程百二and Zhuang Tingfu 莊廷旉adapted European knowledge, others such as Huang Zongxi 黄宗羲and Ma Junliang 馬俊良 composed maps based on the traditional worldview. The most detailed depiction of the Philippines in the early Qing was created by the general Shi Shibiao施世驃 who copied a European chart of Southeast Asia. These cartographers followed different career paths. Cheng Bai’er, for example, was a friend of the Jesuit Matteo Ricci, Huang Zongxi was an influential historian and Neo-Confucianist, and Shi Shibiao had a successful military career. This paper combines a study of the biographies of these five cartographers with a study of the depiction of the Philippines to see how the lives of the cartographers influenced their worldview and cartographic practices.

Elke Papelitzky

Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany

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1 - Generals, Literati, and Friends of the Jesuits: Mapping the Philippines in 17th and 18th century China



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Send Email for Generals, Literati, and Friends of the Jesuits: Mapping the Philippines in 17th and 18th century China