Finland, Western China and Central Asia

Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim (1867-1951) was Finland’s most famous military leader, statesman and explorer. His expedition in Xinjiang has inspired the development early generation of sinologists in Finland. His work has also been translated and published in China and commented by Chinese scholars. More information about his expedition can be found on Mannerheim Museum’s website. Below is an excerpt from the website.

Mannerheim travelled in the company of the French explorers (Paul Pelliot) from Tashkent to Kashgar, from July till October 1906. …..According to the mission he had been given, Mannerheim became familiar with the military situation in China, made notes in his diary, took photographs and drew sketches of maps. The authorities were very willing to give him information. Mannerheim spent a month in the autumn of 1908 in the Russian embassy of Peking arranging his notes, and after his return wrote an extensive report on the journey. He was also given a chance to introduce the results of the expedition to the Emperor. The main idea was to occupy the provinces of Sinkiang and Gansu and to cut China in two. The report was printed in 1909 for official use in the Russian army.


Books from right to left in the picture:

  • 马大正, 厉声, 许建英主编 (2007) 芬兰探险家马达汉新疆考察研究。边疆史地丛书 / 中国社会科学院中国边疆史地研究中心主编。黒龙江教育出版社。 (Finnish Explorer Mannerheim’s Xinjiang Expedition and Research)
  • 马达汉 (Mannerheim, Carl Gustaf Emil), 阿拉腾奥其尔 (2009) 马达汉中国西部考察调研报告合集。王家骥译。新疆人民出版社。(Collection of Mannerheim’s Expedition and Research in Western China)
  • Mannerheim, Carl Gustaf Emil (2009) 百年前走进中国西部的芬兰探险家自述: 马达汉新疆考察纪行。新疆人民出版社。(Personal Statements of Finnish Explorer Who Went to Western China Hundred Years Ago: Documentary of Mannerheim’s Xinjiang Expedition)