China By Demetrius Charles Boulger































































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With the death of Keen Lung the vigor of China reached a term, and just as
the progress had been - Page 320
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With The Death Of Keen Lung The Vigor Of China Reached A Term, And Just As The Progress Had Been

Consistent and rapid during the space of 150 years, so now will its downward course be not less marked or

Swift, until, in the very hour of apparent dissolution, the empire will find safety in the valor and probity of an English officer, Charles George Gordon, and in the ability and resolution of the empress-regents and their two great soldier- statesmen, Li Hung Chang and Tso Tsung Tang.

CHAPTER XV

THE DECLINE OF THE MANCHUS

The favorable opinion which his father had held of Kiaking does not seem to have been shared by all his ministers. The most prominent of them all, Hokwan, who held to Keen Lung the relation that Wolsey held to Henry the Eighth, soon fell under the displeasure of the new emperor, and was called upon to account for his charge of the finances. The favor and the age of Keen Lung left Hokwan absolutely without control, and the minister turned his opportunities to such account that he amassed a private fortune of eighty million taels, or more than one hundred and twenty-five million dollars. He was indicted for peculation shortly after the death of Keen Lung, and, without friends, he succumbed to the attack of his many enemies incited to attack him by the greed of Kiaking. But the amount of his peculations amply justified his punishment, and Kiaking in signing his death warrant could not be accused of harshness or injustice.

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