His First Campaign, Fought When The Chinese Were In The Full
Flush Of Success, Resulted In The Brilliant And Almost Bloodless Conquest
Of The Province Of Shansi.
The neighboring province of Shensi, which is
separated from the other by the river Hoangho, was at the time held by a
semi-independent Mongol governor named Lissechi, who believed that he
could hold his ground against the Mings.
The principal fact upon which
this hope was based was the breadth and assumed impassability of that
river. Lissechi believed that this natural advantage would enable him to
hold out indefinitely against the superior numbers of the Chinese armies.
But his hope was vain if not unreasonable. The Chinese crossed the Hoangho
on a bridge of junks, and Tsinyuen, which Lissechi had made his capital,
surrendered without a blow. Lissechi abandoned one fortress after another
on the approach of Suta. Expelled from Shensi he hoped to find shelter and
safety in the adjoining province of Kansuh, where he took up his residence
at Lintao. For a moment the advance of the Chinese army was arrested while
a great council of war was held to decide the further course of the
campaign. The majority of the council favored the suggestion that did not
involve immediate action, and wished Suta to abandon the pursuit of
Lissechi and complete the conquest of Shensi, where several fortresses
still held out. But Suta was of a more resolute temper, and resolved to
ignore the decision of the council and to pursue Lissechi to Lintao.
Enter page number
Page 178 of 704
Words from 47931 to 48185