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Merchants of Canton and MacaoPolitics and Strategies in Eighteenth-Century Chinese Trade$
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Paul A. Van Dyke

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9789888028917

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888028917.001.0001

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Yan Family 1734–1780s

Yan Family 1734–1780s

(p.149) Chapter Nine Yan Family 1734–1780s
Merchants of Canton and Macao

Paul A. Van Dyke

Hong Kong University Press

The Yan family was very important to the growth of the Canton trade. Texia and Simon took the business by storm in 1734, and within two years were in control of the lion's share. They quickly gained the confidence of all the foreign companies, and became one of the most respected and responsible houses in the trade. By sending their own agents into China's interior, the Yans gained better control over quality and quantities; by maintaining their own fleet of junks, they were able to ensure that adequate supplies of input goods arrived each year to keep the foreign trade moving forward; and by having a relative, Hongsia, closely involved with both the foreigners and junks at the same time, the family had resources that few other houses in Canton could match.

Keywords:   commerce, bankruptcy, junk trade, Southeast Asia, China

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