Dragon's Head and A Serpent's Tail

By Kenneth M. Swope,

Book cover of Dragon's Head and A Serpent's Tail: Ming China and the First Great East Asian War, 1592-1598

Book description

The invasion of Korea by Japanese troops in May of 1592 was no ordinary military expedition: it was one of the decisive events in Asian history and the most tragic for the Korean peninsula until the mid-twentieth century. Japanese overlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi envisioned conquering Korea, Ming China, and eventually all…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Dragon's Head and A Serpent's Tail as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Contrary to previous scholarship, Ming China was not in military decline at the end of the 16th century, and the Wanli Emperor was not an ineffectual ruler during the conflict in Korea with the Japanese. Swope also demonstrates the importance of guns in the conflict, with the Japanese army strong in harquebuses and the Chinese army strong in cannon.

From Peter's list on Chinese military history.

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