The China History Podcast
CHP-174-The Pirate Queen Zheng Yi Sao

In this latest episode Laszlo finally gets around to the oft requested subject of piracy in early 19th century China.  Pirates had been a fact of life going back to the most olden days. Mid to late Qing Dynasty the amount of trade being plied on the China coast attracted pirates like never before.  Zheng Yi Sao ("Zheng Yi's Wife") was a tough woman from the Pearl River Delta who married the most notorious pirate of his day Zheng Yi.  Upon Zheng Yi's death, his widow took control of his massive pirate fleet.  With her adopted son, and later husband Cheung Po Tsai, she controlled what as, at the time, the largest pirate fleet that preyed on coastal dwellers and vessels engaged in trade. She later became an inspiration for many characters that appeared in books, movies, video games and other media.

TERMS FROM THIS EPISODE

Zheng Shi 郑氏 Madame Zheng, Widow Zheng

Zheng Yi Sao 郑一嫂 Zheng Yi Sao, wife of Zheng Yi

haidao   海盗 pirate

Zhejiang   浙江 East coast province of China

Guangdong   广东  Southernmost province of continental China

Tây Sơn Rebellion   Major uprising in Vietnam from 1770 to 1802

Binh Dinh Province   South central coastal province in Vietnam

Da Nang   Vietnam's 3rd largest city

Nha Trang   Coastal city in Vietnam

Xishan   西山 West Mountain (Tây Sơn in Vietnamese)

Guangxi   广西 One province over from Guangdong

Shi   石 Common Chinese surname, means stone

Ma 马Another common Chinese surname, means horse

Xu   徐 Common Chinese surname. I always get it mixed up with 许.

Shi Xianggu   石香姑 Zheng Yi Sao's real name

Xinhui   新会 City near Jiangmen

Tanka or Danjia   疍家 The boat dwelling people of south China and Fujian

shuishang ren 水上人 people who live on the water

Zheng Yi   郑一 South Seas pirate who ran the Red Flag Fleet. Married Shi Xianggu

Red Flag Fleet  红旗帮 Hóngqí Bāng.

Cheung Po Tsai  张保仔 Zhang Bâozâi

Jing Hai fen ji  靖海氛记 Charles F. Neumann's "The Pirates who Infested the China Sea from 1807 to 1810.

Jiaqing emperor   嘉庆帝 Qing emperor 1796 - 1820

Daoguang emperor   道光帝 Qing emperor 1820 - 1850

Ming Jiajing Emperor   明嘉靖帝 Ming emperor 1521 - 1567

Lantau 大屿山 Island that is part of the Hong Kong SAR

Cheung Chau  - Changzhou 长洲 Island off the coast of Lantau

Humen  虎门 Located at the mouth of the Pearl River Delta

Chow Yun-fat  周润发 Great Actor who played Sau Feng, one of the Pirate Lords from Disney's P of the C movie Part 3.

Qiongzhou Strait 琼州海峡 Body of water that separates Hainan from Guangdong

 

 

Direct download: CHP-174-The_Pirate_Queen_Zheng_Yi_Sao.mp3
Category:Podcasts -- posted at: 7:35pm EDT