Republic of China, Year 5, 1916
Guangxi Governor Lu Rongting
26.85 grams; Silver 900; size: 39.0 mm
Obverse: Bust of Lu Rongting
贈 廷 榮 陸 督 都 西 廣
Reverse: eagle flying
Guangxi Governor Lu Rongting 陸榮廷
Lu Rongting (Chinese: 陸榮廷; September 9, 1859 - November 6, 1928), also spelled as Lu Yung-ting and Lu Jung-t'ing, was a late Qing/early Republican military and political leader from Wuming, Guangxi. Lu belonged to the Zhuang ethnic group.
Lu Rongting was of peasant descent and joined secret societies during his youth in order to make a living. Lu became a regular of the Qing army after the outbreak of the Sino-French War in 1884.
Between 1903 and 1905, he actively participated in the suppression of revolutionaries in Guangxi. In the fall of 1904, Viceroy of Liangguang Cen Chunxuan appointed Lu as the commander of the 4 thousand man Guangxi Border Guards. This army would later form the core of the Guangxi Clique.
In December 1907, Long Jiguang and Lu Rongting led the Qing forces in suppressing the Zhennanguan Uprising. The successful suppression of the revolt led by Sun Yat-sen and Huang Xing consequently drove Sun to flee to Singapore, and did not return to China till the Wuchang Uprising.(reference here) The Qing court awarded Lu with the Baturu title. With Long Jiguang leaving for the position of Viceroy of Guangdong, Lu was promoted to become the Viceroy of Guangxi.
Leader of the Old Guangxi Clique.
In July 1911, following the Wuchang Uprising, Guangxi governor Chen Bingkun proclaimed independence and formed the Guangxi military government. Following the departure of Shen Bingkun and Wang Zhixiang，Lu assumed control over the Guangxi province.
On 8 February 1912, Yuanshi Kai formally appointed Lu as the Governor of Guangxi. In the GMD initiated "second revolution" in 1913, Lu sided with Yuan Shikai and suppressed the Nationalist revolutionaries in Guangxi.
Soon after, Cai E and Tang Jiyao (Yunnan Clique) started the National Protection War and Lu joined the side of Cai and Tang against Yuan's monarchial ambitions. In the process Cen Chunxuan, an enemy of Yuan Shikai, was secretly recruited by Lu. Some scholars has suggested the reason for Lu's sudden change in allegiance may be due to his discontent towards Yuan's preferential treatment which prevented Lu from expanding his influence into Guangdong. Nevertheless, the National Protection War led to the abdication of Yuan Shikai.
Long Jiguang proclaimed Guangdong's independence from Yuan on 6 April 1916. With the death of Yuan Shikai in June, Lu and Li Liejun attacked Long and forced Long to retreat to Hainan. In the same year, Lu assumed the governor of Guangdong province. Lu's control and jurisdiction over both Guangdong and Guangxi was affirmed by Li Yuanhong in April 1917.
Sun Yat-sen initiated the Constitutional Protection Movement in 1917, and Lu played an important role. Under the military reorganization in 1918, Tang Jihao and Lu were appointed joint-chiefs. This organization took part in establishing peace between the Beijing government (Under the Zhili Clique) and the Constitutional Protection Movement armies.
However, schisms within the movement took place, with Sun opposing against Lu's (Old Guangxi Clique) nuanced stance against the Zhili Clique led government in Beijing. Furthermore, the people of Guangdong were gradually in antipathy towards Lu's control over the province. By July 1920, Chen Jiongming (with Sun's support), ousted Lu and Cen Chunxuan from Guangdong.
After Lu's loss in Guangdong, he gained the support of the Beiyang government in an attempt to recover the province. In June 1921, the second conflict between the Old Guangxi Clique and the Kwantung Army took place. With defections within his own army and loss of strategic city Chongzuo in September, Lu declared his decision to step down from governor in Nanning and subsequently fleeing to Shanghai.
Due to the polarization of relations between Chen Jiongming and Sun Yat-sen, Lu was re-appointed to become the governor of the Guangxi province in 1923 by the Beiyang government. However, he was unable to fully recover his influence over the province due the formation of the New Guangxi Clique led by Li Zongren and Bai Chongxi.
Within Southern China, three forces emerged, the most powerful led by the coalition of Lu and followed by Shen Hongying and the New Guangxi Clique. In 1924, Lu's forces was surrounded by Shen's forces and at the same time was under the attack of the New Guangxi Clique.Nanning was lost the New Guangxi Clique and by August of the same year, Lu had also conceded Guilin to Shen. Facing defeat, Lu fled to Yongzhou, Hunan and officially announced his departure from politics and defeat on 9 October 1924.
Following which, Lu Rongting retired from politics. On 6 November 1928, he passed away in Shanghai.
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