Brill’s Encyclopedia of China

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(519 words)

Militia, an institutionalized combination of military and civil roles, has had a long history in Chinese society. During the Warring States period (480-222 BCE), the idea of "placing the army among the people" (yu bing yu nong) facilitated the replacement of a small aristocratic military with larger armies of peasant-soldiers and played a key role in the imperial unification of the Qin dynasty. The term "militia" (minbing) can apply to a wide range of institutions in Chinese history. At one end, there were regular military systems with militia features, such as the fubing system of the…

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McCord, Edward A., “Militia”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of China, Managing Editor English Edition: Daniel Leese. Consulted online on 02 March 2024 <>
First published online: 2008
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004168633, 20121018

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