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The Company and the ShogunThe Dutch Encounter with Tokugawa Japan$
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Adam Clulow

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231164283

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231164283.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 26 September 2021

The Violent Sea

The Violent Sea

(p.135) Chapter Four The Violent Sea
The Company and the Shogun

Adam Clulow

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses how European maritime technology had fared in asserting power over Asia. Historians have cited the gunned vessels as evidence for European conquest and expansions into the oceanic arena. Yet even the most potent technological advantage requires the presence of specific conditions in order to be used effectively. In early modern Asia these prerequisites were only rarely met and there was a significant gap between potential and actual application. For every successful campaign, there are numerous other examples in which the capacity to make effective use of superior technology was suppressed. Even the most land-centric of regimes could intervene in the maritime realm, often by the selective use of legal markers, which, when combined with a willingness to punish violations by exacting retribution on European assets or personnel on land, served to limit the use of maritime force.

Keywords:   Asia, gunned vessels, maritime force, maritime realm, European maritime technology, legal markers, European assets

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