Biography in English

Chü Cheng (8 November 1876-23 November 1951), T'ung-meng-hui activist and member of Sun Yat-sen's entourage who later joined the conservative Western Hills faction of the Kuomintang. He served as president of the Judicial Yuan from 1932 to 1948.

The third of five brothers, Chü Cheng was born in a small village in Kuangchi hsien, near the Anhwei border of Hupeh province. For the preceding three generations his forebears had been degree-holders. During the Taiping Rebellion the family had suffered severe property losses, and Chü Cheng's father had been forced to earn his living as a teacher in a private school. Chü received a conventional education in the Chinese classics, first from an uncle and then from his father. After failing the examinations several times, he became a sheng-yuan in 1899 at the age of 23. In 1902 he went to Hankow and took, but did not pass, the examination for the chü-jen degree. While in Hankow he made friends with a group ofstudents, several ofwhom, including Ch'en Ch'ien (T. Chao-i), Shih Ying (q.v.),andT'ienT'ung (d. 1930; T. Tzu-ch'in), later joined the anti-Manchu revolutionary movement. Chü returned to Kuangchi and spent the next two years helping his father and brother in teaching.

In the summer of 1905 Chü Cheng was visited by his friend Ch'en Ch'ien, who had returned from school in Tokyo. Chü was persuaded by Ch'en to continue his education in Japan. He sailed for Japan in September, and he was greeted in Tokyo by Ch'en, T'ien T'ung, and other friends who had joined the T'ung-menghui. Through T'ien T'ung, Chü was introduced to the Hunanese revolutionary leader Sung Chiao-jen (q.v.). With Sung as his sponsor, he joined the T'ung-meng-hui in December, at the age of 29. In 1906 Chü also became a member of, and drafted the regulations for, the Kungchin-hui, organized by revolutionaries from the provinces of central China for the purpose of establishing contact with the secret societies in the Yangtze region. He enrolled in the preparatory department of Tokyo Law College, from which he was graduated in 1907. He then enrolled in the department of law at the university. In October 1907 Chü hurriedly left Japan to join in the revolt at Hok'ou on the Yunnan border. When he reached Hong Kong he learned that the uprising had been crushed by the imperial forces. Chü then went to Singapore, where he joined Hu Han-min (q.v.), T'ien T'ung, and Wang Ching-wei (q.v.) on the staff of the local T'ung-meng-hui organ, Chung-hsingpao [newspaper for the restoration]. For some seven weeks he took part in a heated war of words between the revolutionary paper and the Tsung-hui-pao [a composite paper], the magazine of the constitutional monarchist party [Paohuang-tang] of K'ang Yu-wei (q.v.). Chü's editorials and articles in the Chung-hsing-pao won him the admiration of revolutionary sympathizers among the overseas Chinese in Burma, at whose invitation he went to Rangoon in 1908 to take charge of their newspaper, the Kuanghuajih-pao [the Kuang-hua daily]. In Rangoon, he established a branch of the T'ung-menghui. To win support for the revolutionary cause among overseas Chinese communities, he traveled to Mandalay, Bhamo, and other cities in Burma. However, his activities aroused the enmity of influential adherents of the monarchist cause. In the spring of 1910 they succeeded in persuading the British colonial government to close down the Kuang-hua jih-pao and to expel Chü from Burma. British authorities refused to allow him to land at Penang and kept him under close surveillance in Singapore. After furnishing satisfactory guarantees, Chü was allowed to go to Hong Kong on his way to Japan to resume his studies.

During the summer of 1910 Chü Cheng met with Sung Chiao-jen, T'an Jen-feng, and other T'ung-meng-hui leaders in Tokyo to reassess the party's strategy, which had been focussed on military operations in south and southwest China. The repeated failures of revolutionary attempts in that region had convinced the leaders in Tokyo that the focus of revolutionary activity should be shifted to central China, particularly to Wuhan and Nanking. They decided to set up a central China bureau of the T'ung-meng-hui to coordinate the activities of revolutionary groups in the Yangtze region. Chü was given responsibility for supervising party work in Hupeh province.

After returning to Shanghai in the summer of 1910, Chü Cheng made his way to his native village in Hupeh. Early in 1911 he went to Hankow and reestablished contact with Sun Wu {see Li Yuan-hung) and other leaders of the Kung-chin-hui, who for the past two years had been active in infiltrating army units in Wuhan. After the formal establishment of the T'ungmeng-hui central China bureau in Shanghai (31 July 1911), Chü and the revolutionaries in the Kung-chin-hui intensified their propaganda efforts among the local military forces andjoined with the Wen-hsueh-she, another influential revolutionary society in Hupeh, to organize a revolt in the Wuhan area. Early in October Chü was sent to Shanghai by the Wuhan revolutionaries to purchase arms and to bring Sung Chiao-jen, T'an Jen-feng, and other T'ung-meng-hui leaders to Hankow to take part in the uprising. On 10 October, while Chü Cheng was still in Shanghai, the revolt broke out in Wuchang, and on the following day the insurgents established Li Yuan-hung (q.v.) as governor of a provisional military republic in Hupeh. Accompanied by T'an Jen-feng, Chü hurried to Hankow and conferred with Li Yuan-hung at Li's headquarters in Wuchang. During the next few days Chü played a major part in organizing the Hupeh military government. In collaboration with Sung Chiao-jen and T'ang Hua-lung (q.v.), the speaker of the Hupeh provincial assembly, he drafted a provisional constitution for the revolutionary regime. In late October, Chü worked at the staff headquarters of the revolutionary forces defending Hankow. After the fall of the city to the imperial armies, Li Yuan-hung proposed that a conference ofrevolutionary delegates from various provinces be held at Wuchang to discuss the formation of a provisional central government. Li sent Chü Cheng to gain the cooperation of Ch'en Ch'i-mei (q.v.) and other revolutionary leaders, who were preparing to convene a similar meeting at Shanghai. Although Chü persuaded some of the revolutionary delegates at Shanghai to attend the conference in Wuchang, he himself remained in Shanghai until December, when, after the capture of Nanking, that city was chosen as the seat of the new provisional government. He then went to Nanking as one of the delegates from Hupeh and attended the conference of provincial representatives, which, on 29 December 1911, elected Sun Yat-sen president of the provisional republican government.

Chü Cheng became vice minister of the department of internal affairs. He also took charge of convening a meeting of the T'ungmeng-hui. At the meeting (3 March 1912) the party headquarters was transferred officially from Tokyo to Nanking, and Sun was reaffirmed as party director. Chü was placed in charge of the party's departments of accounting and business affairs. In April 1912, when Sun Yatsen turned over the presidency of the republic to Yuan Shih-k'ai, Chü resigned.

In August 1912 Chü Cheng was a member of Sun Yat-sen's entourage on Sun's official visit to Peking. Under the guidance of Sung Chiaojen, the T'ung-meng-hui and other groups were being reorganized as the Kuomintang, still under Sun Yat-sen's over-all leadership. The headquarters of the Kuomintang was established at Peking. Sun established a party liaison bureau at Shanghai and appointed Chü its director. During the winter of 1912 Chü successfully ran as a Kuomintang candidate from Hupeh in the national elections. He then went to Peking to take up his duties as a senator. Opposition to Yuan Shih-k'ai increased, and Chü was ordered by Sun Yat-sen to return to Shanghai in mid-May to help plan punitive measures against Yuan. After the outbreak of the so-called second revolution in the summer of 1913, Sun dispatched Chü to supervise the Kuomintang military defenses at the fortress at Woosung, the point of access to Shanghai from the sea. For 20 days he remained with the garrison and held the Woosung fort against Yuan's naval forces. However, after the collapse of Kuomintang military resistance elsewhere, Chü withdrew to Shanghai and in mid- September fled with his family to Japan. Chü Cheng lived quietly in Kyoto until the summer of 1914, when he received an invitation from his old friend T'ien T'ung to mediate disagreements among party members in Tokyo about Sun Yat-sen's plans to reorganize the Kuomintang into the Chung-hua ko-ming-tang. Chü became a member, but several of the older members of the revolutionary party could not be persuaded to join Sun's new organization. Chü was appointed by Sun to head the party affairs bureau and to manage the party's propaganda magazine, Min-kuo tsa-chih [republican magazine]. Late in 1915, when Yuan Shihk'ai's campaign to become monarch was reaching its climax, Chü was appointed commander in chief of a northeast army of the China Revolutionary Army and was sent to Dairen to organize military opposition to Yuan in the northern provinces. In January 1916 Chü made his way to Tsingtao and, with the help of local resistance leaders in Shantung, secretly assembled a force of two divisions and one brigade. In May, this force rose in revolt and captured Weihsien and other points adjacent to the Kiaochow-Tsinan railway, but it failed to take Tsinan, the provincial capital. After the death of Yuan Shihk'ai in June 1916 and the restoration of the National Assembly under Yuan's successor, Li Yuan-hung, hostilities in Shantung were brought to an end. In July, Chü Cheng proceeded to Peking to resume his seat in the Senate. In the reconvened National Assembly, Chü Cheng and Hsieh Ch'ih (q.v.) were the only representatives of the Chung-hua ko-ming-tang. At that time the National Assembly was divided on the question of whether China should enter the First World War (on the side of the Allies). Tuan Ch'i-jui (q.v.), the premier, and his adherents among the Peiyang militarists were strongly in favor of China's participation in the war. Chü Cheng, supporting Sun Yat-sen's position, was among those who insisted on China's neutrality. The National Assembly's refusal to yield to pressure from Tuan on this question led to its dissolution and to the seizure of power at Peking by Tuan and his supporters. In August, Sun Yat-sen joined the southwest military leaders Lu Jung-t'ing (q.v.) of Kwangsi and T'ang Chi-yao (q.v.) of Yunnan in the socalled constitution protection movement and issued a call to the members of the National Assembly to gather in Canton and form a new government in opposition to Tuan's regime at Peking. In response, Chü Cheng and many others went to Canton and took part in the "extraordinary congress," which established a military government with Sun Yat-sen as its commander in chief. In the spring of 1918 Chü and Tsou Lu (q.v.) organized Sun's followers in the National Assembly in opposition to a motion, sponsored by supporters of the Kwangsi militarists, to reorganize the military government into a directorate in which Sun would be forced to share his authority with six other directors general. The motion was carried, however, and after the reorganization of the military government in May, Sun withdrew to Shanghai, leaving Chü in Canton to represent his political interests in the "extraordinary congress." In October 1919 Chü Cheng went to Shanghai to attend a meeting of party members called by Sun Yat-sen to reorganize the Chung-hua koming-tang into the Chung-kuo kuo-min-tang (Kuomintang). Chü was appointed head of the new party's department of general affairs and a member of its military committee. During the following year, while he was occupied with party affairs in Shanghai, the Kuomintang regime at Canton gradually disintegrated under growing pressures from the dominant Kwangsi militarists. However, after the defeat of the Kwangsi forces by the Kwangtung Army under Ch'en Chiung-ming (q.v.) and the return of Sun Yat-sen to Canton (October-November 1920), plans were made to organize a new national government. After returning to Canton early in 1921, Chü led the movement that resulted in the abolition of the old military government, the establishment of a new government, and the election of Sun as its president extraordinary (May 1 92 1 ) . In the new regime, Chü was made a counsellor to the presidential office and was placed in charge of local Kuomintang affairs. With the help of foreign, mainly Japanese, capital he established the Kwangtung stock exchange and founded the Kuomin Savings Bank. Through careful management of these enterprises, proceeds of more than China $1 million were obtained to help finance Sun's northern expedition into Kwangsi province in the latter part of 1921. In the spring of 1922, as the result of a growing rift between Sun and Ch'en Chiung-ming, Ch'en was dismissed by Sun; he retired to his stronghold at Waichow (Huiyang) . Chü and other Kuomintang leaders visited Ch'en at Waichow several times, seeking to reconcile the two leaders, but their efforts were unsuccessful. In June, Ch'en staged a coup, forcing Sun and the Kuomintang out of Canton.

Late in 1922 Sun Yat-sen, then in Shanghai, announced a reorganization of the Kuomintang and appointed Chü Cheng one of the twenty counselors responsible for making preparations for the party's reorganization. The next year Sun returned in triumph to Canton, and Chü remained at the party headquarters in Shanghai. Chü took exception to Sun's decision to admit members of the Chinese Communist party to the Kuomintang, but out of loyalty to the party leader he did not actively oppose the decision. In January 1924 he attended the reorganized Kuomintang's First National Congress in Canton, at which he was elected to the party's Central Executive Committee and to the standing committee. However, antagonism resulting from Chü's opposition to Sun's policy of Kuomintang-Communist cooperation culminated in his withdrawal from active participation in party affairs and in his abrupt departure from Canton.

After returning to Shanghai, Chü spent the remainder of 1924 in complete retirement at his residence in Paoshan hsien, near Woosung. In March 1925, while traveling in central China, he heard of Sun Yat-sen's death and hastened to Peking to pay his last respects. In Peking, he attended a meeting of the Kuomintang Central Executive Committee, but because he disagreed strongly with its resolutions, he returned to Shanghai before the meeting adjourned. In the summer and autumn of 1925 he traveled extensively through Honan and Shensi provinces, making contact with such northern military figures as Sun Yueh [see Wu P'ei-fu) and Yang Hu-ch'eng (q.v.) . On his way back to Shanghai in November, he received invitations from Hsieh Ch'ih, Tsou Lu, and other Kuomintang rightwing leaders to attend a so-called fourth plenum of the Central Executive Committee in Peking, later known as the Western Hills conference. After arriving in Peking, he helped to draw up resolutions calling for the expulsion of the Communists from the Kuomintang, the dismissal of the Russian adviser Borodin, and the impeachment of Wang Ching-wei.

The antagonism between the right-wing Western Hills group and the Kuomintang organization dominated by the left wing in Canton increased in 1926. In January, at the Second National Congress, held in Canton, Chü Cheng and other participants of the Western Hills conference were denounced and threatened with expulsion from the party; and in March, the Western Hills group convened a rival second congress in Shanghai at which Chü was elected to the standing committee of the Central Executive Committee. After the adjournment of this congress Chü remained in Shanghai in charge of the right-wing group's headquarters and founded a newspaper, the Chiang-nan wanpao [south China evening post], as the propaganda organ of the Western Hills group. Despite their claims to party leadership, Chü Cheng and his colleagues of the Kuomintang right wing had no voice in the decisions of the central party organization and the National Government during the period of the Northern Expedition of 1926-27. Not until after the purge of Communists from the Kuomintang and the emergence of rival Kuomintang regimes at Wuhan and Nanking in the summer of 1927 was the Western Hills faction able to make its influence felt in the party. At that time, in response to calls for unity within the Kuomintang, representatives of the Wuhan, Nanking, and Western Hills factions convened in Shanghai and organized a 32-man Central Special Committee (16 September 1927) to replace the rival central executive committees elected early in 1926 by the Western Hills congress in Shanghai and by the Kuomintang Second National Congress in Canton. As one of the representatives of the Western Hills group in the Central Special Committee, Chü Cheng went frequently to Nanking to take part in the committee's efforts to reorganize the National Government. Soon, however, the Central Special Committee came under attack from several factions within the Kuomintang. In December 1927 Chiang Kaishek, Wang Ching-wei, and other important members of the Central Executive Committee called a meeting in Shanghai at which they announced the abolition of the Central Special Committee. After Chiang Kai-shek's return to power in Nanking at the end of the year, members of the Western Hills group withdrew from the government, and Chü retired to his home outside Shanghai.

After taking control of the National Government in Nanking, Chiang Kai-shek was confronted by a series of revolts led by disaffected militarists and by the intrigues of such Kuomintang opposition factions as the reorganization clique and the Western Hills group. Late in 1929 these dissident elements began negotiations in an attempt to unite and form a rival government and party organization in north China—a movement that was to result in the enlarged conference of the summer of 1930. The National Government tried to block this attempt by ordering the arrest of several leaders of the Western Hills group, including Chü Cheng, on 20 December 1929. Although Chu had taken refuge in the International Settlement in Shanghai, he was arrested by National Government military authorities on 23 December, when his car strayed into the Chinese part of the city during a snow storm. After being held for five months at the headquarters of the 5th Division, he was transferred in May 1930 to the Lunghua jail. During this period of confinement, Chü took up the study of Buddhism, placing himself on a vegetarian diet and devoting much of his time to transcribing Buddhist sutras. In December, he was moved to Nanking, where he was held under house arrest until the Japanese attack in Manchuria in the autumn of 1931. During the Japanese occupation of Manchuria there was renewed pressure to bring about party unity within the Kuomintang, and to this end the Fourth National Congress was convened in Nanking in November 1931. After more than seven years of estrangement from the central Kuomintang organization, Chü Cheng, then 55, was reinstated in the party hierarchy; he was elected to the Central Executive Committee and subsequently (in December) to its standing committee. He also was elected vice president of the Judicial Yuan; and in March 1932, after the resignation of the incumbent, C. C. Wu (Wu Ch'ao-shu, q.v.), Chü became president of the Judicial Yuan.

Although primarily a politician rather than a jurist, during his 16 years as president of the Judicial Yuan (1932-48) Chü Cheng fully supported judicial reform in China. Of particular importance during the 1930's were his efforts to achieve a simplification of judicial procedures and of the court system. Important steps toward the clarification of judicial procedure were incorporated in the New Code of Criminal Procedure (January 1935) and the New Code of Civil Procedure (February 1935). The Law for the Organization of Courts was promulgated in October 1932, adopting a system of three levels of courts : district courts, one for each hsien ; high courts, at the provincial level ; and the Supreme Court, to serve the entire nation. However, formidable obstacles stood in the way of realizing this program, the most serious being the lack of personnel adequately trained in law, low salaries, and interference by the party in making appointments. Thus, by 1948, when Chü resigned as president of the Judicial Yuan, district courts existed in less than half of the hsien in China, and the judges in many of the existing district and higher courts were poorly qualified. It was, in part, to gain advice on these and other practical problems of judicial administration that Chü convened a national conference in Nanking in September 1935, which was attended by leading judicial officials and by representatives of law schools and private legal organizations. Among the results of the conference were the organization of the Chung-hua min-kuo fa-hsueh hui [law society of China] of which Chü was made chairman, and the publication of the Fa-hsueh tsa-chih [China law review] as a forum for discussion of current legal and judicial questions. After his reconciliation with the Nanking regime in 1931, Chü Cheng had acquired the status of an elder statesman in the party, a position of great prestige but little political authority. Nevertheless, as a person who had formerly been in contact with many political camps, he sometimes was called upon to mediate among divergent political and military factions. Thus, during the Fifth National Congress of the Kuomintang in Nanking (November 1935) he acted as personal host to delegates from the Southwest Political Council, and early in 1936 he was dispatched to Canton with Yeh Ch'u-ts'ang (q.v.) and others to welcome Hu Han-min back into the central party organization. In the summer of 1936 he was sent to south China to take part in the National Government's effort to negotiate a peaceful unification with the dissident militarists Ch'en Chi-t'ang and Li Tsung-jen (qq.v.).

In November 1937, three months after the outbreak of the war with Japan, it was decided to move the capital from Nanking to Chungking. During the next eight months Chü Cheng was in the Wuhan cities directing the Kuomintang's temporary central headquarters. Late in July 1938 he went by way of Changsha and Kweilin to Chungking. In April 1939 he was stricken with pneumonia; and he was unable to resume his official duties until September. During the next three years, one of Chü's principal concerns as head of the Judicial Yuan was to promote the abolition of extraterritoriality. In October 1942, apparently as part of a general government campaign, he published an article reviewing China's achievements in modernizing its legal codes, courts, and prisons and claiming that in view of these improvements there was no longer any basis for foreign consular jurisdiction in China. (On 11 January 1943 Great Britain and the United States signed treaties relinquishing their extraterritorial rights in China.) In September 1 943 Chü presided over the important eleventh plenum of the party's Central Executive Committee at which the organic law of the National Government was amended to permit Chiang Kai-shek to become Chairman of~the National Government. During the later war years, Chü was active as a member of civilian comfort missions visiting troops at various military fronts.

When the National Government returned to Nanking after the war, Chü Cheng submitted his resignation, but it was not accepted. When the National Government was reorganized in April 1947, Chü was reelected president of the Judicial Yuan. In March 1948, during the election campaigns for president and vice president, Chü was urged by his friends to run for the vice presidency. Instead, he announced his intention to contest the candidacy of the incumbent, Chiang Kai-shek, for the presidency. The election returns of 19 April indicated that, although Chiang had won the election by an overwhelming majority, Chü had succeeded in gaining a surprisingly large number of the votes in the National Assembly (269 to Chiang's 2,430). On 1 July 1948, in accordance with his long-expressed wishes, Chü resigned from the presidency of the Judicial Yuan. Shortly afterward, he was elected to membership in the Control Yuan.

In the year that followed, Chü Cheng took an active part in arranging the National Government's removal from Nanking to Canton. In November 1949, after last-minute efforts to reestablish the government in Chungking proved futile, Chü flew to Taiwan, where for the next two years he continued to be a member of the Control Yuan. On 23 November 1951, at the age of 75, he died of a stroke at his home in Taipei.

Chü Cheng was survived by his second wife and by nine of his ten children. By his first wife (1880-1934), whom he married in 1898, he had two daughters and one son, Po-ch'iang (191242), a graduate in physics of the University of Gottingen who served as an instructor in the Central Military Academy and during the war as head of the 2nd Armored Regiment's repair depot. Chü's second wife, Chung Ming-chih (1892—), whom he married in 1912, was the daughter of a chü-jen and district magistrate and was a graduate of Shanghai Women's Law School. She was the mother of two sons and five daughters. The elder son of this marriage, Hao-jan (191 7-), a graduate of the Tsinghua University sociology department and of the Central Military Academy who received an M.A. in sociology from Harvard University, served as an official in the Executive and Examination yuans. The eldest daughter, Ying-ch'u (191 3-), received a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago; she became a member of the National Institute of Economics and a professor at Peiping Women's Normal College. She married Ma Tsu-sheng. The fourth daughter, Tsai-ch'un (1920-), received a Ph.D. from Cornell University; she served in Taiwan as an editor at the National Compilation and Translation Institute and wrote works in the field of bio-chemistry. She married Chang Nai-wei.

After his death, Chü Cheng's prose and poetry was collected and published in 1954 at Taipei in two volumes as the Chü Chueh-sheng hsien-sheng ch'üan-chi [the complete works of Chü Cheng]. Among the works included in this collection were two of considerable historical interest: the "Hsin-hai cha-chi" [record of the 1911 revolution], first published serially in the Shanghai Chiang-nan wan-pao [Chiang-nan evening news] in 1928 as a series of notes on the events of the 191 1 revolution; the "Mei-ch'uanjih-chi" [Chü Cheng's diary], a similar series of notes on the events of 1912 which had been published serially in 1950 in the Hong Kong Min-chu p'ing-lun [democratic review] ; and the Mei-ch'uan p'u-chi [an autobiographical chronology ofChü Cheng], which recounted Chü's life from 1877 to 1948 in verse form. From the time of his imprisonment in 1930 Chü was a practicing lay Buddhist, and among his works is a collection of poems on Buddhist themes, the Ch 'an-yueh chi [pleasure of Ch'an Buddhism]. Not included in his collected works, but a valuable source of the history of the Kuomintang, is the Ch'ing-tang shih-lu [an authentic record of the purification of the party], compiled by Chü in 1928 from party documents and other materials relating to the activities of the Western Hills group and their political organization.

Biography in Chinese

居正 原名:居之骏 字:觉生 号,梅川




















在日本侵占满洲期间,国民党内要求党内团结的呼声又高涨起来,为此. 1931年11月,在南京召开国民党第四次全国代表大会。居正被排斥于国民党中央之外七年多后,在他五十五岁时,在党内官复原职,12月当选为中央执行委








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