Historical Geography Research ›› 2022, Vol. 42 ›› Issue (3): 61-73.

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A New Textual Research on the Yanfa-Dao of the Lianghuai Salt Zone in Ming and Qing Dynasties

Huang Kaikai   

  1. Department of History, School of Humanities, Nanchang University, Nanchang 330031, China
  • Received:2021-08-19 Online:2022-07-20 Published:2022-11-14


Yanfa-Dao was an important official set up by the Ming and Qing governments to regulate the production and sales of salt. It began with the Wanli reign, at the end of which the Lianghuai salt zone was set up to rectify and manage Yanfa-Dao, which was a special dispatch officer of the imperial court to collect salt taxes. During the Tianqi years, party conflicts were fierce, and Yanfa-Dao’s rectification of salt affairs had not been effective, so the Chongzhen court worked to restore the old system dominated by the Salt Administrator. The Qing Dynasty readjusted the salt official system, and in addition to the merger of Salt Administrator and Yanfa-Dao, the Fenxun Yanwu-Dao to manage production and the Tongsheng Yanfa-Dao to manage sales were established. Yanfa-Dao went from being a dispatch officer to a local salt agency, and together with the Salt Administrator became a direct office of Booi Salt Inspector. To monopolize Lianghuai’s salt interests, the Emperor also ordered the Liangjiang Governor-general to also manage the salt affairs to supervise the Booi Salt Inspector. The Daoguang court abolished Booi Salt Inspector and salt affairs were placed under the administration of Liangjiang Governor-general. After Xianfeng and Tongzhi, the authority of Salt Administrator and Yanfa-Dao was usurped by the Bureaus of Investment and Supervision, and Lianghuai’s salt interests were returned to the Liangjiang Governor-general and became a monopoly and financial basis of his office.

Key words: Dao System in Ming and Qing Dynasties, Lianghuai salt administration, Yanfa-Dao, Salt Administrator, Salt Royal Censor

CLC Number: 

  • K928