The Ch'ing dynasty was established by the Manchus, who invaded China and captured Beijing in 1644, and lasted until 1911. The term Ch'ing means "pure," and it was used to add legitimacy to an alien rule. The Manchus adopted many aspects of Chinese culture, won widespread Chinese collaboration, and ruled China in some ways while preserving special privileges for themselves. Although many Chinese officials were employed in central and local governments, the Manchus held half of the high offices to assure control over administration.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.