Punch,  32 (1857), 112.

Chinese Chronology ('Cording to COCKER and COBDEN)



Extract, Essay, Spoof


Cultural Geography, Progress, Vaccination, Anaesthesia, Invention, Military Technology, Mathematics, Physiology, Exploration, Aeronautics, Mapping, Medical Treatment, Photography

    Following the British bombardment of Canton (the latest phase in Britain's Opium War with China), Punch lists spoof extracts from a glorious 'History of China' to be written by Richard Cobden, a staunch opponent of the aggressive policy towards the Chinese of Prime Minister Henry J Temple (3rd Viscount Palmerston). The list reveals that 'some of our greatest discoveries and inventions were known amongst the Chinese long before Europe had emerged from the swaddling-clothes of her first childhood', and includes such items as 'Vaccination rigorously enforced' in 4999 B.C., 'Quadrature of the Circle satisfactorily proved' in 1658 B.C., 'The Circulation of the Blood and Penny Newspapers discovered' in 1287 B.C., and 'The Face of Nature photographed in all its features by Chinese artists' in 1202 B.C.

© Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Project, Universities of Leeds and Sheffield, 2005 - 2020

Printed from Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical: An Electronic Index, v. 4.0, The Digital Humanities Institute <http://www.sciper.org> [accessed ]