Ts'ai Yüan-p'ei

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Ts'ai Yüan-p'ei

(tsī yüän-pā), 1867–1940, Chinese educator and intellectual leader. He achieved distinction as a classical scholar but later joined (1904) the anti-Manchu revolutionary movement at Shanghai. Ts'ai studied philosophy in Germany (1907–11). He returned to China during the republican revolution of 1911 and was appointed education minister in the early cabinets of Sun Yat-senSun Yat-sen
, Mandarin Sun Wen, 1866–1925, Chinese revolutionary. He was born near Guangzhou into a farm-owning family. He attended (1879–82) an Anglican boys school in Honolulu, where he came under Western influence, particularly that of Christianity.
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 and Yüan Shih-kaiYüan Shih-kai
, 1859–1916, president of China (1912–16). From 1885 to 1894 he was the Chinese resident in Korea, then under Chinese suzerainty. He supported the dowager empress, Tz'u Hsi, against the reform movement (1898) of Emperor Kuang Hsü, and she
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. After further study in Germany and France (1912–16), Ts'ai was appointed (1916) chancellor of Beijing Univ. He encouraged a critical reevaluation of Chinese culture and promoted freedom of thought, thereby paving the way for the intellectual revolution (1917–21) known as the May Fourth MovementMay Fourth Movement
(1919), first mass movement in modern Chinese history. On May 4, about 5,000 university students in Beijing protested the Versailles Conference (Apr. 28, 1919) awarding Japan the former German leasehold of Kiaochow (Jiaozhou), Shandong prov.
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. After the establishment of the Nanjing government (1928), Ts'ai used his prestige as a KuomintangKuomintang
[Chin.,=national people's party] (KMT), Chinese and Taiwanese political party. Sung Chiao-jen organized the party in 1912, under the nominal leadership of Sun Yat-sen, to succeed the Revolutionary Alliance.
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 party elder to promote civil liberties and oppose political control of the student movement.