July 1898-March 1899: The Road to War

Patrick H. Hase

in The Six-Day War of 1899

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print April 2008 | ISBN: 9789622098992
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9789882207592 | DOI:
July 1898-March 1899: The Road to War

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This chapter provides a discussion on the road to War during July 1898–March 1899. It starts by addressing the New Territories in 1899. The New Territories were mostly very mountainous, especially in the centre and east, with little flat land except in patches along the stream-courses or seashore. The New Territories in 1899 had no roads capable of taking any sort of wheeled vehicle, but only footpaths, mostly narrow and unpaved, or paved only with rough boulders. Where the paths went over the hills they often became interminable flights of ill-paved steps. The Six-Day War was the last flourish of the old society of the New Territories, the last time the old great Punti clans and villages were able to dominate local politics and society. After the coming of the British, these ancient Punti clans had to accept equality with their old tenants and allies. The agitations against the Lease of the New Territories to Britain are discussed. In addition, the preparations for War during March-April 1899 are highlighted. The chapter then outlines the factors driving the insurgents into armed opposition.

Keywords: New Territories; Six-Day War; Lease; Britain; insurgents; politics; society

Chapter.  9417 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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