Brill’s Encyclopedia of China

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World War I
(453 words)

Mounting international pressure and a bitter struggle for power between rival political-military factions after the death of Yuan Shikai (1916) led China to side with the Allies and declare war on Germany and Austria-Hungary on August 14, 1917.

Great Britain had from the very first made efforts to get China to join the Allies, even facing hostility from Japan, wary lest China acquire international autonomy. Events, however, changed swiftly throughout 1917: America declared war on the Central Powers, and Wilson himself applied pressure on China to join …

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Samarani, Guido, “World War I”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of China, Managing Editor English Edition: Daniel Leese. Consulted online on 05 March 2024 <>
First published online: 2008
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004168633, 20121018

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