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followed in which the Viceroy disclosed his views, to which Wing listened with amazement. For, behold, here was a man such as he had not supposed existed in that country — a man reared in China, and not a young man either — who had light in his head; who recognized the causes of many of the disadvantages China was contending with in taking her place among the family of nations; a man of marvellously liberal and progressive sentiments.


The result of the interview was that Wing entered his service and was made a Mandarin of the fifth rank, there being nine degrees of that dignity in the Chinese official system. At this time the great Taiping rebellion was at its height and Tsang Koh Fan was in the field. In fact, the interview had taken place at his camp in Ngankin, on the Yang Tse River. The Viceroy first tendered Wing a military command which, on the score of lack of qualification, he asked leave to decline. He was then, shortly after, 1864, at his own suggestion, despatched abroad to purchase machinery for the manufacture of arms, for which purpose the expenditure of a