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Monday, March 21, 2005

Cohong

Wade–Giles romanization  kung-hung , also called  hong , or  cong-hong  the guild of Chinese merchants authorized by the central government to trade with Western merchants at Canton prior to the first Opium War (1839–42). Such firms often were called “foreign-trade firms” (yang-hang) and the merchants who directed them “hong merchants” (hang-shang). In existence by the mid-17th century, these merchants theoretically numbered 13 but frequently totalled

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