Koxinga – Chinese Pirate Who Fought European Colonization

Kings and Generals’ historical animated documentary series on the history of China continues with a video on Koxinga. This admiral became the pirate king of China and fought the Dutch Empire and the Qing dynasty. The episode covers the battles of Lialuo Bay and Fort Zeelandia.

Zheng He’s Floating City: When China Dominated the Oceans:
Why the Ottomans Never Colonized America:

Previous episodes on Chinese History:

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Art: Nargiz Isayeva
Animation: Agarahim Ibrahimov
Script: Leo Stone
Narration: Officially Devin ( &

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Production Music courtesy of Epidemic Sound:

#Documentary #Koxinga #DutchEmpire

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Comment (26)

  1. There was no such thing as a Dutch empire (back then it even was a republic) and European powers didn't have the ability and sources to colonize yet. These battles were solely to enforce a monopoly on certain trades. Existing rulers were kept in place. Colonization really started at the end of the 18th century and well into the 20th century.

  2. Fun fact: Zheng chenggong (koxinga) was the person who brought the first major wave of Chinese immigrants to Taiwan in tainan from southern Fujian after he died his son established the kingdom of tungning.

  3. China's 'Ming Empire' was the most powerful empire in the world at the time.

    Many historians take it for granted that the military fleet of the 'Ming Empire' won the 'Dutch East India Company' and 'Siege of Fort Zeelandia'.

    This is because the superiority of weapons and military power of China's 'Ming Empire' was more powerful than that of Europe.

    For example, the naval fleet of China's 'Ming Empire' won the Battle of Tunmen by crushing and destroying the Portuguese fleet.

    In the Battle of Qiancaowan, the 'Ming Empire' won the war against Portugal.

    In fact, it was only possible in 1840, after the Industrial Revolution, that European military power surpassed China.

    However, the important thing is that it was not the 'Ming Empire' that invaded the Taiwanese island in this Siege of Fort Zeelandia, but a Warship led by a pirate warlord called 'Koxinga'. It is the fact that the private army of 'Koxinga' invaded Taiwan and won the war with the Netherlands.

    Koxinga's army was not even the official army of the 'Ming Empire'. It was just the private army of the pirate warlord. Still, winning the war against the 'Dutch East India Company' is a great thing.

  4. l felt some bad sentiment about Kings and Generals, why you discribes Asian forces as barbaric group, such as Muslims, Japanese or Arabs, and keep silence for brutalities by Europeans and their allies.

    I was wrong. forgive me.

  5. Haha why the hell would he think executing people that surrendered and having their women forced into sexual slavery make other people more likely to surrender.

  6. k what i dont get is….if they had access to european weapons like guns and cannons back then….how did china lose to the british when they occupied hong kong? Any have an anwser?

  7. Thanks to this channel. Some greed European countries divided the rest of the world to themselves, exploited whatever resource and altered/destroyed their histories, the saddest part is when they were left without identity and recognition.

  8. 17:33 Despite this words, Chinese historical records (both before and after Koxinga) show Taiwan was never a part of China before the Qing Dynasty. According to many historians both at both sides of the Strait, Koxinga was lying to his troops and to the Dutch to set a narrative and have an excuse to attack. After destroying Tungning, the Qing Dynasty (or Shi Lang) offered the Dutch to get back the control of Taiwan, which they refused. They abandoned Taiwan for a year and later decided to set a prefecture whose main function was to not allow Chinese to migrate or form societies in Taiwan.

  9. It's amazing also common place that throughout history Africans have their places in many favorable n admirable role in foreign culture. I.e during the Tong dynasty, in which foreigners were allow to pursuit imperial bureaucracy. Although foreign officers initially had a low limit to their rise in rank, as time past the ranking ceiling kept raising. One, foreigner prove to be just as loyal n competent to the Chinese counterpart. Two, the Tong emperor saw this as competition to whom could serve best their lord beneficial. On record there were African mandarins in pretty high rank.

  10. Plus, Koxinga's dad Zhen Zilong was technically a Christian…. he baptized in Manila and baptismal name Nicolas. And his predecessor Yen Iquan's name was Pedro, also called Chinese Peter, if I remember correctly 😂

  11. I am not sure why people call them "the kingdom of Tungning," nowadays. Because in their official documents, they never call themselves anything about Kingdom nor Tungning. They are Ming loyalist and self-claimed Ming Empire. There was a famous incidents that merchant from Taiwan at that time landed accidentally in Korea. They told Korean government at that time that they are "Ming-Fujian". The Korean government at the time were shocked because they thought Ming Empire don't exist anymore. If they called themself "Tungning" when they arrive Korea, Korean will not be shocked. Also, in Chinese political culture, kingdoms are similar to Emirate in the Ottoman era that "king needed to be appointed by the emperor in Beijing". For example, the kings in Korea needs to be appointed by the high-commissioner from Manchu court. If there is a "King of Tungning", who appointed the king?

  12. It was the Dutch would actually initiated Han colonization of Taiwan, as colonial overlords needed able-bodied males to cultivate the land in their stead. Before this time, Taiwan was in no way as seen as part of China as the video seems to imply by uncritically quoting Koxinga's statement. In any case, Koxinga remains a controversial figure in Taiwan, mainly due to his brutal treatment of indigenous groups. There has been calls over the years to have his temple decommissioned and statue removed. Koxinga may have been fighting European colonialism but he himself was merely a Chinese colonialist. The battles with the Dutch were fights among thieves.


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