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Kuo Sung-tao

(1818-1891), Chinese diplomat and liberal statesman

Sitter in 5 portraits
The first Chinese Minister to be posted to a western country. He was a prominent member of China's Self-Strengthening Movement which brought about a number of institutional reforms that were initiated in the 1860s and 1870s. Having initially served in various bureaucratic roles, he became known for his moderate and peaceful advocacy to foreign policy. In 1877, he became the first Qing minister to serve as Minister to Britain and France. With changing attitudes in China, Sung-tao was ordered to return in late 1878. His pro-foreign views and the proposed publication of his diaries, recording his journey from Shanghai to London, caused an outcry, the publication was subsequently halted. Concerned for his safety, he returned to his home province citing 'ill health' as the reason for his sudden retirement from public duty. He devoted the rest of his life to writing and teaching.

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Kuo Sung-tao, by Sir Leslie Ward - NPG 4707(14)

Kuo Sung-tao

by Sir Leslie Ward
watercolour, published in Vanity Fair 16 June 1877
NPG 4707(14)

Kuo Sung-tao, by Lock & Whitfield, published by  Sampson Low, Marston, Searle and Rivington - NPG Ax17602

Kuo Sung-tao

by Lock & Whitfield, published by Sampson Low, Marston, Searle and Rivington
woodburytype, published 1880
NPG Ax17602

Kuo Sung-tao, by Lock & Whitfield - NPG x132257

Kuo Sung-tao

by Lock & Whitfield
woodburytype on paper mount, 1880 or before
NPG x132257

Kuo Sung-tao ('Statesmen. No. 255.'), by Sir Leslie Ward - NPG D43801

Kuo Sung-tao ('Statesmen. No. 255.')

by Sir Leslie Ward
chromolithograph, published in Vanity Fair 16 June 1877
NPG D43801

Web image not currently available

Kuo Sung-tao

by Lock & Whitfield, published by Sampson Low, Marston, Searle and Rivington
woodburytype, published 1880
NPG x134575


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