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NMTH kicks off exhibition on Sino-French War in Taiwan

  • Date:2024-06-27
NMTH kicks off exhibition on Sino-French War in Taiwan

The National Museum of Taiwan History (NMTH) kicked off the exhibition “The Sino-French War: Recollections of the Se'á'huan (清法戰爭:西仔反印象記特展)” on June 25. Through photographs, battlefield accounts, and letters by French soldiers, the exhibition showcases the lives of Taiwanese people under the rule of the Qing Dynasty often overlooked in grand historical narratives.


Despite its remoteness, Taiwan was affected by a conflict between France and the Qing China over Vietnam 140 years ago. Taiwan’s Keelung (基隆), Tamsui (淡水), and Penghu (澎湖) became battlegrounds, and the island faced economic difficulties stemming from a trade blockade. The Sino-French War, which is called “Se'á'huan (西仔反)” in Taiwanese and literally means “French assault,” was brought to Taiwan’s doorstep by France and impacted the island from 1884 to 1885.  


This exhibition addresses the war history in the 19th century Taiwan, presenting the results of more than a decade of research on local communities. It tells a story of how Taiwanese society mobilized and united to resist the French invasion and tries to reconstruct the historical memory of the battles on the island at that time.


“The Sino-French War: Recollections of the Se'á'huan” runs until May 4, 2025. For more information, see the NMTH’s website.