The Thirteenth Province of the Empire of China, Quang si.

THIS Province is situated between those of Quang tong, Hou quang, Koei tcheou, Yun nan, and the Kingdom of Tong King, and contains twelve Cities of the First Order, and eighty of Second and Third.

It produces such Plenty of Rice that it supplies the Province of Quang tong, which otherwise would not be able to maintain its numerous Inhabitants; notwithstanding which it is not comparable to most of the other Provinces in respect of its Extent, Beauty and Commerce: It is watered by several large Rivers; the Eastern and Southern Parts are pretty well cultivated, being a flat Country ; but every where else, especially towards the North, it is full of Mountains, which are covered with Trees. 

There are Mines of all Kinds of Metals in this Province, especially of Gold and Silver, which the Chinese, out of Policy, prohibited to be open'd for some time, to avoid the Disorders that might be occasion'd thereby ; but they have at last ventured to open the Gold Mine at the sole Expence of the Emperor. 

There is a particular Tree in this Province, which instead of Pith has a soft Pulp, of which they make Flour, and whose Trade is pretty good. 

In this Island there are plenty of little Insects that produce White Wax, of which I have spoken elsewhere : The Cinnamon that grows here diffuses an Odour much more agreeable than that of Ceylan. They make Silks here, and there are Parrots, Porcupines, and Rhinoceroses. 

The First City, and Capital of the Province of Quei ling fou. 

THIS City is situated on the Banks of a River that runs into the Ta ho, and tho' this River is considerable yet it is unnavigable, on account of its Narrowness and Rapidity, and consequently is unserviceable for Trade. The Name of this City, Quei ling, signifies a Forest of the Flowers of Quei, they being more numerous in this Province than in any other, especially in the District of this City , it grows upon a great Tree, whose Leaves are like those of the Laurel ; the Flowers are small, and yellow, and grow in Tufts , they soon fell off the Tree, and then others succeed : In Autumn this Tree is full of Flowers, whose Smell is so agreeable that the whole Country is perfumed therewith. 

In this Country are found the best Stones which the Learned use to make Ink of, and there are Birds whose Feathers are diversify'd with variety of Colours, which are wove into their Silks. 

This Capital has but two Cities of the Second Order, and seven of the Third within its District : It is almost surrounded with savage and barbarous People, who inhabit the neighbouring Mountains. I have already given an Account of their Manners, and of the Difference between those that lived under the Chinese Mandarins, and those that were independant. 

The Second City, Lieou tcheou fou. 

THE District of this City is large, and well watered, but the Country about it is very mountainous ; there is abundance of Simples for the Use of Physick ; there are two Cities of the Second, and ten of the Third Order under its Jurisdiction : In the Number of the latter is Vou suen hien, famous for the Genius of its Inhabitants, for there are no Examinations at Peking for the Degree of Doctor, until several Learned Men of this City have taken it first, in order to be employed in Affairs of State. 

The Third City, Kin yuen fou. 

THIS City is not pleasant, tho' it is built on the Banks of a large River, because it is surrounded with craggy Mountains, and is not far distant from those of the Province of Quei tcheou , which are almost inaccessible, and inhabited by none but a People almost savage. 

The Vallies, which are between these fruitful Mountains, are full of Villages and Forts, and they find Gold in the Rivers. It has two Cities of the Second Order, and five of the Third in its District. 

The Fourth City, Se nguen fou. 

THE District of this City is small, and contains but one of the Second Order, and two of the Third, and is surrounded with Mountains : The People were formerly very brutish and savage, but are become more polite since they have been incorporated into the Empire. 

the Fifth City , Ping lo fou. 

THIS City is situated on the Banks of a great River, which is not very fit for Navigation, because it runs through several very strait Vallies, and abounds with Willows. It hath one City of the Second Order, and seven of the Third in its District, which are all surrounded with Mountains, that render the Country very disagreeable, and yet some are covered with Orange-Trees, and there is a great Quantity of White Wax. 

The Sixth City, Ou tcheou fou. 

ALL the Rivers of this Province unite near this City, which joins to the Province of Quang tong, and is the Key of the whole Province, and the most considerable City for Commerce in it : It hath one City of the Second Order, and nine of the Third within its Jurisdiction. The Country is partly mountainous, and partly flat : In the Mountains is found Cinnabar, and the uncommon Tree called Quang lang, which instead of Pith hath st soft Pulp, of which they make Flour, and whose Taste is pretty good. 

Besides other Animals, which are common in China, there is the Rhinoceros, and a kind of yellow Ape, whose Shape and Cry resemble those of an ordinary Dog. 

The Seventh City, Sin tcheou fou. 

THIS City is situated at the Confluence of two Rivers in an agreeable Country, when compared with the rest of the Province , it produces a kind of Cinnamon, which is not near so good as that of the Island of Ceylon, either for Smell or Taste ; there are also Trees that produce the hard Wood called Iron-Wood. They make here a kind of Linen Cloth of a sort of Grass, which is often sold dearer than the common Silks ; and there is likewise a yellow Earth which they affirm to be good against all sorts of Poison. The District of this City is not considerable, and contains but three Cities of the Third Order. 

The Eighth City, Nan ning fou. 

THIS City is almost surrounded with Rivers and small Lakes ; it hath four Cities of the Second Order, and three of the Third within its District, which is foil of Mountains and Vallies. There are large Parrots which soon learn to talk, and very large Porcupine, as well as Iron Mines in some of its Mountains. 

The Ninth City, Tai ping fou. 

THIS City is built on a Point of Land which is almost surrounded by a River ; on the Land-side it is fortify'd by a Wall that reaches from one Arm of the same River to the other ; The Territory of this City is very fruitful; very populous, and well cultivated, being the best in all the Province : There are a great Number of Forts, because it is near the Confines of the Kingdom of Tong king. 

The Chinese call the Inhabitants of this Country Barbarians, because they are not so polite as themselves : There are within the Districts of this City twelve Cities of the Second Order, and two of the Third. 

The Tenth City, Se ming fou. 

THIS City is likewise situated in the Neighbourhood of the Kingdom of Tong king, in a mountainous Country, near the Pillar which the Tonkinese have erected for the Limit of their Kingdom, and which I have described in another place ; the Mountains are well stock'd with Wood : It has but four Cities of the Second Order in its District: This Country produces all the Necessaries of Life ; but the Inhabitants are not near so polite as they are in the rest of the Empire. 

The Eleventh City, Tchin ngan fou. 

A GREAT Part of the District of this City is dependant on the Kingdom of Tong king, and has but one City of the Second Order. Formerly it was but open Towns, which they have enlarged, and surrounded with Walls, to make it a City of the Second Order. The Manners of its Inhabitants are not different from those of the Chinese, and the Country produces all things necessary for Life. Here is great Plenty of Honey and Wax. 

The Twelfth City, Se tchin fou. 

THE District of this City is very small, and comprehends but two of the Second Order ; it a situated at the Confluence of two small Rivers which join near its Wall. The Country is partly flat, and partly mountainous, and stands on the Frontiers of the Province of Yun nan ; it is full of Towns that are well peopled.