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What was the result of the Boxer Rebellion for China?

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Michael Koren eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In 1900, the Boxer Rebellion occurred in China. A group of people, from a secret society known as Society of the Righteous and Harmonious Fists, rebelled against what they believed was an increasing amount of foreign influence. They killed both foreigners and Chinese Christians and seized property owned by foreigners. The Boxer Rebellion was eventually ended in 1901 as the Japanese and the Western powers created a force to deal with the rebellion. The Boxer Rebellion had a significant impact on Chinese society.

There was some concern that China would lose its independence. While that didn’t happen, China had to a pay over $300 million in reparations. Those involved in the Boxer Rebellion were punished. Foreign countries were allowed to keep troops in Beijing to protect their diplomatic representatives. China was not allowed to import weapons for two years. The effect of these requirements ultimately weakened the Qing Dynasty, eventually leading to its demise in 1912.

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seaofknowledge eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The direct consequence of the Boxer Rebellion of 1900 was that the ruling Chinese Qing dynasty became even weaker and foreign influence in China continued.

The Boxer Rebellion was a rebellion staged by an anti-foreigner Chinese society known for their "boxing" skills in physical exercise and defense. The Rebellion was ended when a multi-national force ended the Rebellion and China had to sign the Boxer Protocol in 1901. China lost not only a huge sum of money to foreign nations as a result of the agreement, but it could also not import arms and it had to give more rights and permissions to foreign troops.

So basically, the uprising that intended to end the presence of foreign powers in China made the foreigner's hand even stronger when it ended.

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The major result of the Boxer Rebellion was that the Ch'ing Dynasty lost a great deal of credibility and power and a group of reformers gained power.

The Manchu Ch'ing Dynasty had already been deeply unpopular among Chinese.  Now, it lost most of its remaining credibility because it had not been able to either suppress the Boxers or control the foreign response.  The dynasty had to sign a very unequal treaty after the Rebellion, further weakening it in the eyes of the Chinese people.

Because of this, power started to flow to regional leaders and to radical reformers like Sun Yat-sen.  This led relatively quickly to the fall of the Ch'ing Dynasty in 1911 and the rise of conflicts in China between various warlords and political factions that would continue up until the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949.

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The Boxer Rebellion refers to the uprising of a Chinese group known as the Society of Righteous and Harmonious Fists (nicknamed the Boxers) against the foreign nationals and Chinese Christians around 1900. 

This rebellion lead to the weakening of Qing dynasty in China and its ultimate demise few years later, causing China to emerge as a republic. The Qing ruler was made to sign a very unfavorable treaty that led to the suppression of this rebellion. The treaty fined China $330 million, put a ban on arms-import, and punished the rebels, thereby weakening the ruling family in the public's eyes. 

This also led to the increase in Japanese influence in Asian affairs and the reduction of European sway in the region, marking a significant shift in regional power.