Jingkang incident

Jingkang Incident
Part of the Jin–Song Wars
Bianjing on the map of modern Henan
Date September 1125 – March 1127
Location Bianjing (present-day Kaifeng, Henan, China)
Result Jin victory
All the territories north of the Huai River ceded to Jin
Northern Song dynasty Jin dynasty
Commanders and leaders
Emperor Qinzong of Song Emperor Taizong of Jin
First siege: 200,000
Second siege: 70,000
First siege: 100,000
Second siege: 150,000
Casualties and losses
Many members of the Song imperial family abducted. Devastating destruction to government and civilians. Unknown

The Jingkang Incident (靖康事變; Jìngkāng shì biàn), also known as the Humiliation of Jingkang (靖康之恥; Jìngkāng zhī chǐ) and the Disorders of the Jingkang Period (靖康之亂; Jìngkāng zhī luàn) [1] took place in 1127 during the Jin–Song Wars when the forces of the Jurchen-led Jin dynasty besieged and sacked Bianjing (present-day Kaifeng), the capital of the Han Chinese-led Song dynasty. The Jin forces captured the Song ruler, Emperor Qinzong, along with his father, Emperor Huizong, and many members of the imperial family and officials of the Song imperial court.

This event marked the end of the era known as the Northern Song dynasty, when the Song dynasty controlled most of China. Some members of the Song imperial family, most notably Zhao Gou (later Emperor Gaozong), managed to escape to southern China, where they reestablished the Song dynasty (as the Southern Song dynasty) in the new capital, Lin'an (present-day Hangzhou).

This event was referred to as the "Jingkang Incident" because it took place during the Jingkang era of the reign of Emperor Qinzong; "Jingkang" was the era name of Emperor Qinzong's reign.


In 1120, under the Alliance Conducted at Sea, the Jin and Song dynasties agreed to form a military alliance against the Liao dynasty and, if victorious, divide up the Liao territories. The Jin would get a large portion of the northern land and the Song would get a smaller portion in the southern region called the Sixteen Prefectures.

The Jin army sacked the Liao capital of Shangjing and ended the Liao dynasty. The Song army in the south, however, could not even penetrate the Liao's defensive positions and the army was defeated by the remaining Liao troops afterwards. This exposed the limitation of the Song army as well as the corruption and bureaucracy in the Song imperial court. In the end, the Jin took control of all former Liao territories.

After the fall of the Liao dynasty, the Song dynasty wanted the Sixteen Prefectures as promised. The Jin dynasty sold the land at a price of 300,000 bolts of silk and 200,000 ounces of silver. This price was considered to be extremely generous because it was the tribute that the Song was previously paying to the Liao annually since the Chanyuan Treaty of 1005.

Prelude to the war

According to the Twenty-Four Histories, in 1123, three years after the fall of Liao, a Jin general Zhang Jue (張覺) defected to the Song dynasty. Since he was governor of the Jin-controlled Pingzhou Prefecture, an area just north of the Sixteen Prefectures on the other side of the Great Wall, Pingzhou Prefecture was also merged into Song territory. The Song imperial court initially welcomed the defection and awarded Zhang Jue an honorific title and land. The Jin dynasty, on the other hand, sent a small army aimed to overturn the defection but was defeated by Zhang Jue's troops. [2]

Soon after that, the Song imperial court realised that Zhang Jue's defection would only result in hostility from the north. [3] Zhang Jue was executed in the winter of 1123. [4] This came too late: in the fall of 1125, Emperor Taizong of the Jin dynasty issued an order to launch a full-scale attack on Song territories. [5]

Other Languages
Bân-lâm-gú: Chēng-khong chi Piàn
한국어: 정강의 변
Bahasa Indonesia: Insiden Jingkang
日本語: 靖康の変
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Jingkang incident
Tiếng Việt: Sự kiện Tĩnh Khang
文言: 靖康之禍
粵語: 靖康之難
中文: 靖康之变