This book examines the differences and similarities between warfare in China and India before 1870, both conceptually and on the battlefield. By focusing on Chinese and Indian warfare, the book breaks the intellectual paradigm requiring non-Western histories and cultures to be compared to the West, and allows scholarship on two of the oldest civilizations to be brought together. An international group of scholars compare and contrast the modes and conceptions of warfare in China and India, providing important original contributions to the growing study of Asian military history.

chapter |14 pages


part I|40 pages

Military theory/theories of warfare in China and India

chapter 1|15 pages

Opportune moments in early Chinese military thought

The concept of ji 機 in the Warring States period manuscript Cao Mie's Battle Array

chapter 2|23 pages

Yuddha and Vijaya

Concepts of war and conquest in ancient and early medieval India (up to ce 1300)

part II|145 pages

Technology, geography and warfare

chapter 3|17 pages

Chinese border garrisons in an international context

Liaodong under the early Ming dynasty

chapter 4|17 pages

Elephants in pre-modern India

chapter 5|30 pages

British-India and Afghanistan


chapter 7|12 pages

Bringing in the big guns

On the use of artillery in the Ming–Manchu war

chapter 8|20 pages

Battles, boats and bridges

Mughal amphibious warfare, 1571–1612

chapter 10|19 pages

The politics of military control in the west coast

Marathas, Mughals and the Europeans, 1650–1730

part III|179 pages

Military culture, state and society

chapter 11|11 pages

Command, control and castration

Eunuch supervisors in the armies of the Tang dynasty

chapter 13|10 pages

Martial values in painting

Chinese bannerman painters at the Qing Court 1

chapter 14|12 pages

Disorder in the general staff

A corruption case during the First Jinchuan War (1747–1749)

chapter 16|32 pages

Total war

Military supply and civilian resources during China's era of rebellions

chapter 17|13 pages

European military experience in South Asia

The Dutch and British armies in Sri Lanka in the eighteenth century

chapter 18|22 pages

Military revolution and state formation reconsidered

Mir Qasim, Haider Ali and transition to colonial rule in the 1760s