Herbert Allen Giles (1845-1935), the author of the two works which comprise this volume, was in his day, as now, an extraordinarily erudite scholar of Chinese history and culture. His long life spans the era from the Taiping Rebellion through the early years of the second Sino-Japanese War. He was the son of John Allen Giles (1808-1884), an Oxford University-trained minister, translator from the Greek, and author of a Latin Grammar. After serving in the Chinese consular service for twenty-six years (1867-1893), Giles fils became professor of Chinese at Cambridge, where he taught until 1932. Over the years, he penned a long list of books, scholarly and popular, which attempted to make sense of the great complexity of Chinese history and culture to a literate Anglophone audience.