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The life and times of Thomas Manning

Chinese dreams in Romantic England tells the extraordinary story of Thomas Manning (1772–1840), a brilliant polymath who risked everything to discover the secrets of Chinese language and culture. A young idealist whose imagination was fired by the French Revolution and ambitious plans for making a better world, Manning participated in the ‘first wave’ of British Romanticism alongside famous friends such as Charles Lamb and Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Disillusionment with events in France encouraged other Romantics to seek inspiration in the poetic imagination and the English countryside, but Manning looked further afield – to China, one of the world’s most ancient and sophisticated civilizations. In 1790s Britain, China was terra incognita, and Manning’s quest led him first to the salons of Napoleonic Paris, then to the sealed borders of the vast Chinese Qing Empire, and finally to Tibet’s holy city of Lhasa. There, on the ‘roof of the world’, Manning became the first Englishman to meet the Dalai Lama. When he finally returned to England, he confronted an increasingly Sinophobic climate, and his outward-looking vision was neglected and later forgotten. This book uses newly discovered archival sources to tell Manning’s story in full for the first time. In doing so, it not only helps us understand the bold and forward-looking vision of this remarkable man. It also provides a surprising new perspective on China’s contribution to the Romantic imagination, and the wider course of cultural exchange between Britain and Asia at the dawn of the nineteenth century.

Robert Aldrich

(which proved false) of Russian influence at the court of the Dalai Lama in Lhasa. The mission turned into an invasion, the Dalai Lama driven to take refuge in Mongolia and then China before an agreement was signed by which Britain forced Tibet to cede territory, pay an indemnity that if discharged in full would have taken seventy-five years to acquit, and renounce any rights over its traditional tributary of Sikkim. 10 (Three years later, in a convention between Beijing and London, the British agreed not to annex any Tibetan territory or interfere in its affairs, in

in Monarchies and decolonisation in Asia
Edward Weech

far as Lhasa. Using official channels, Manning took advantage of a legal loophole to travel under the assumed identity of a pilgrim who desired to learn about Buddhism from the Dalai Lama. 24 He dreamed that Lhasa might be a base from which to venture onwards to Peking and Nanking, before returning to Canton. 25 Applying for legal permission took time, but it meant Manning could later say honestly that ‘I travelled by authority’; and he thought this official status helped explain why his Chinese assistant

in Chinese dreams in Romantic England
Abstract only
Edward Weech

rebellions have begun, protesting the introduction of new industrial machinery amid the economic depression caused by the Napoleonic Wars, which rage endlessly on the Iberian Peninsula. These events are far from the mind of the tall, lean Englishman, aged 39, who dismounts at the foot of an enormous, fortress-like building – the Potala Palace – which seems to grow out of the mountain before him. The palace is the residence of the Dalai Lama: it is more than a dozen storeys tall, contains over a thousand rooms, and the

in Chinese dreams in Romantic England
The ‘drift’ phenomenon in the ‘free Tibet’ and global warming campaigns
Stephen Noakes

TAN’s willingness to negotiate and cooperate with the authorities such that the goals of activists were downgraded without undermining their commitment to helping the earth. Access, or official receptiveness to their issue, is the first major point of divergence. In the first case presented below, that of the campaign for Tibetan independence, the Dalai Lama spent nearly fifty years attempting to convince China and the world that his was the rightful government of a sovereign Tibetan state. Unwilling and unable to bend even slightly on the matter, Beijing dug in its

in The advocacy trap
Abstract only
Robert Aldrich

British after the overthrow of King Thibaw and in the early years of independence, abolished by the new military dictators. A special case of deposition occurred after the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959 and the flight of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama from Lhasa to refuge in the Indian city of Dharamsala. 4 In the 1970s, a revolution overthrew Emperor Haile Selassie, who had earlier

in Banished potentates
Math Noortmann
Luke D. Graham

. Most coercive measures fall into the category of retorsion. UK After the then Prime Minister David Cameron met the Dalai Lama in 2012, China froze diplomatic relations with the UK. This ended after 14 months with an agreement that the prime minister would visit China

in The basics of international law
Neil Collins
Andrew Cottey

Tibet, however, is the CCP party secretary Zhang Qingli, a Han Chinese with only a few words of the Tibetan language (quoted in Spiegel Online International, 16 August 2006). The ‘real’ Panchen Lama, second highest-ranking Lama after the Dalai Lama, was rumoured in 2010 to be dead while the Beijing appointed equivalent was elected an honorary president of the Buddhist Association of China. The violence that occurred in March 2008 has not been repeated on any appreciable scale and the police and military clearly have the upper hand. Despite this apparent hegemony

in Understanding Chinese politics
Conflict with minorities
Terry Narramore

) enjoys a high international profile and won a period of regular, if fruitless, dialogue with the state, Uyghur separatism is less prominent, lacks unity and the leadership of a Dalai Lama-like figure, and has not won any concessions to its cause. 33 Overall, despite the state’s security capacity never being higher than at present, violent conflict has only grown and Han-minority communal violence has

in Violence and the state
Abstract only
An uneasy relationship
Harsh V. Pant

Indira Gandhi 46 Indian foreign policy National Open University, to confer an honorary doctorate on the Dalai Lama.34 This is the same government that just a few years back sent a note to all its ministers advising them against attending a function organized by the Gandhi Peace Foundation to honor the Dalai Lama so as to not to offend China.35 Likewise, after Beijing began issuing stapled visas to the residents of Jammu and Kashmir and then denied a visa to the head of the Indian Army’s Northern Command, New Delhi reacted forcefully and hinted that it was ready to

in Indian foreign policy