"The Hidden Land" means that a large amount of land in the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) was "hidden" or unknown, since the land was managed by both the administrative and the military systems, and only the former was made public while the latter was being hidden due to confidentiality issues. This is one of the author’s creative findings as a result of his solid textual research and rigorous argumentation.
Since the Ming state management system had a great impact on the land, the population, the taxes and corvée, the imperial examinations, the justice, the grass-roots organizations and the frontier ethnics during the 500 years from Ming to Qing (1636–1912), the views on the garrisons and guards (weisuo) in the military system are of great help to review the essential issues of the period, which were often misunderstood or neglected before. In addition, the author introduces the present situation, existing problems and basic historical materials in the Ming study which will be beneficial to the Ming researchers and enthusiasts.
List of tables. Foreword. Acknowledgements Part I A New Analysis of Cultivated Land in the Early Ming PartⅡ The Transformation of the Ming Garrison System in the Qing Part Ⅲ Territorial Administration in the Ming Dynasty Part Ⅳ The "Garrison" Category of Household Registration in the Ming Part V Yongning Guard: A Southeastern Coastal Fortress in the Ming Part VI Military Affairs of the Late Ming Part VII A Guide to the Study of the Ming History Part VIII Forty Years of Studies on the Ming History Afterword. Bibliography. Index
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