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The Ryukyu KingdomCornerstone of East Asia$
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Mamoru Akamine and Robert Huey

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780824855178

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824855178.001.0001

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The Ryukyu Kingdom’s Tribute Trade

The Ryukyu Kingdom’s Tribute Trade

(p.100) Chapter Six The Ryukyu Kingdom’s Tribute Trade
The Ryukyu Kingdom

Mamoru Akamine

, Lina Terrell, Robert Huey
University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter details Ryukyu’s tribute trade with China, starting from the rituals involved with departure, then describing trading activities in Fuzhou, then the trip to Beijing to pay formal respects to the Emperor. At any given time, there were three teams of envoys in play: one on its way from Fuzhou to Beijing, one set to return on the ship that brought them, and one to remain in Fuzhou for three years. A “mission retrieval ship” also was allowed every year to pick up any envoys headed home, and this ship also carried cargo. The chapter features step-by-step descriptions of trade transactions, as well as rituals related to the journey.

Keywords:   tribute trade, tribute ship cycles, “mission retrieval ship,”, China-crossing rituals, Maso (Bōsa), Ryukyu House in Fuzhou, Beijing, rituals in Beijing, return journey

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