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The Great Tonkin
Tonkin, located geographically between China to the north, Laos to the west, the former Annam and Cochin China Southern (Trung Bo current) to the south and the Gulf of Tonkin in the East, Tonkin form a quadrilateral of about Dogeared 700 km out of 700 km. Its area amounts to 115,700 km2.
Winter is cold and foggy. The long rains season, genuine monsoon after a short period of hot and dry, especially up to May to August. Summer is very hot. The coastline is often ravaged by hurricanes and typhoons after June or July.
In the fertile Red River delta where the waters of Sông-Koi and Sông-bo (current or Black River Sang Da) mingle, rivers formerly characterized by their powerful floods, rice production is important. The ground is mountainous north and west. The populations of Upper Tonkin, sparsely populated country, are mainly Thai and Yunnanese origin. The populous alluvial valleys of Lower Tonkin welcome the main urban and industrial centers: Hanoi, Haiphong, Nam Dinh, Bac Ninh, Tay Sôn, Hon Gay ... and Upper Tonkin mountainous provinces with beautiful scenery: Hoa Binh, Dien Bien Phu, Lai Chau, Lao Cai, Cao Bang, Bac Can, Ha Giang, Lang Son...
Locally, Tonkin is known under the name Bắc Bộ Vietnamese, meaning "septrentionales provinces or northern border."
A little history
Tonkin is a dependency of the medieval Chinese Empire. The city is the capital Hanoi in the early seventh century, then it was the Chinese name called Dongjing -signifiant "capital of the East." Tonkin was sometimes called Tunquin the eighteenth century.
Still, Tonkin emancipated from Chinese rule from 968. Four autonomous dynasties take turns a sovereign control until 1414, when a passing Chinese imperial yoke is needed until 1428. The dynasty The rear of the emerging is needed until 1788. From 1802, Tonkin is attached to Cochin.
In 1867, the French navy presence in the Mekong Delta is interested in the land of the kingdom of Annam and Cochin China. The military will fall several languages, including the importance of a supposed Chinese dialect. Religion is Buddhist, but is needed over the years a large Christian community that reached more than 130,000 souls to 1870. The total population of 8 million inhabitants.
The Kécho capital and main port of Tonkin are closed to Europeans. Also the position of active trade between Cochin and China sharpens colonial appetites. An inventory of Tonkin before 1880 mentions many riches:
- silk manufacturing, conton of canvas and lacquer works
- gold mines, silver, iron and tin productive. Operating silver mines produce 6 tons.
- rice crops, corn and potatoes
- heavily exploited coconut palm trees, areca and sugarcane.
- tea plantations worms
- rich untouched forests, inhabited by the Asian elephant, tiger, leopard, bear and rhinoceros. They contain many varieties of wood: teak, ebony, rosewood, Eagle-wood, guttien-gum ...
Listening to the advice of marine and Chambers of Commerce, Jules Ferry arguing before parliament reason to pacification and civilization mission covers military control operations on the part of the Cochin China remained independent. The reverse of fortune and solidarity with those involved in this violent conquest cost him his ministry after his incident-Lang in March 1885. They also earned him a second nickname momentarily hostile bedrooms, Ferry Tonkin. French Indochina Flag
The France assumed sovereignty over Annam and Tonkin after the difficult Sino-French War of 1881 to 1885 using the name of the capital in Vietnamese for the entire region. The third part of Vietnam remains Cochin south of the second part, the long strip of land of Annam. Tonkin pacified is integrated into the Indochinese Union in 1887. The history of Tonkin merges with that of French Indochina and then the independent Vietnam.