Hundreds of unseen photographs depicting China’s journey from medieval kingdom to modern global superpower feature in a new book charting the country’s wars.
China’s Wars: Rousing the Dragon 1894–1949 details the conflicts that forged modern China – from colonial clashes such as the Boxer Rebellion, through to the Second World War.
Written by Phillip Jowett, the book boasts more than 300 rare, unseen images.
To find out more about the book, published by Osprey, click here.
Weaponry like this was not brought in sufficient quantities to transform the Chinese Imperial Army into a modern military force. Conflict between the traditionalists and the modernizers in the Chinese military was to leave the Imperial Army unprepared for war with Japan in 1894. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
These horsemen were one of the more effective contingents of the Imperial Army and were armed with rifles and bow and arrows. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
The prisoners were being guarded under the command of the Japanese. The Korean troops appear to be armed with muskets dating to the mid-19th century. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
China declared war on the Central powers of Germany and Austro-Hungary on 14 August. No Chinese troops fought in the war, although many thousands of Chinese did provide a vital labour force on the Western Front. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
The soldiers’ kits and bundles of clothing are piled on the carts, along with boxes of ammunition. When on campaign, warlord armies requisitioned peasant carts and their owners to transport their belongings. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
Most of the soldiers of the Inner Mongolian Army, which fought Nationalist troops in the Suiyuan Campaign in 1936, were either ex-bandits or volunteers. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
The heavily camouflaged crewmen are all wearing the German-supplied M35 steel helmet. China was supplied with mortars by France, Germany and several other nations during the 1930s. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
Local Nationalist commanders sometimes raised large paramilitary forces like this during the Civil War, but were unable to get the rifles to arm them from the central government. This was because Chiang Kai-shek did not want any potential rivals for power backed by an armed militia loyal to their commander rather than to the Nationalist government. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
Photos of the handful of Japanese who surrendered during the battle of Changteh in December 1943 carried captions like ‘Son of the Rising Sun in Defeat’. China’s victory in the battle also allowed them to show off weaponry they had captured from the Japanese. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)
The Japanese provided about half of the 18,000 troops involved in the second successful expedition to relieve Peking. (Courtesy of Philip Jewett)