Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period/Bandi
BANDI 班第, d. Oct. 4, 1755, general, was a member of the Borjigit clan, and belonged to the Mongol Plain Yellow Banner. A student in the government school for bannermen, he was selected in 1717 to fill a post of secretary to the Grand Secretariat. He passed through several minor offices including that of astronomer in the Imperial Board of Astronomy (1718). Appointed a sub-chancellor in the Grand Secretariat in 1724, he was sent the following year to Tibet to promulgate orders of Emperor Shih-tsung about the zoning of the area between Tibet, Szechwan and Yunnan. During the next few years he held the office of junior vice-president of the Court of Colonial Affairs (1727, 1733–38), and junior vice-president of the Board of War (1738–39). He was appointed to serve on the Grand Council in 1733. As governor-general of Hu-kuang (Hupeh and Hunan) (1739–40) he led a successful expedition in 1740 against the Red Miao (紅苗) in the vicinity of Chên-kan and Yung-sui, Hunan. In 1741 he was again appointed to serve the Grand Council, and was made president of the Board of War. Seven years later (1748) he was sent as quartermaster-general to the armies then fighting against the aborigines of the Chin-ch'uan region west of Szechwan (see under Chang Kuang-ssŭ). For several months (1748–49) he served as acting governor of Szechwan. As the fighting on the front was unfavorable, the commanders were punished and Bandi was reprimanded for his unwillingness to assume military responsibilities and for his failure to report dilatoriness of the commanders. He was degraded in 1748 to senior vice-president of the Board of Works, and early in 1749 was discharged from all offices. Given the rank of a deputy lieutenant-general late in 1749, he was sent to attend to affairs in the Kokonor region. He was appointed in the following year imperial resident of Tibet, but before his arrival at Lhasa a rebellion took place in that city and two former imperial residents were murdered (see under Fu-ch'ing). As a result of his quick action the rebels were suppressed. Recalled to Peking in 1752, he again served the Grand Council, but hardly a year had passed before he was sent to Canton as governor-general of Kwangtung and Kwangsi. Meanwhile preparations were under way for the conquest of Sungaria (see under Amursana). Bandi was recalled from Canton in 1754 and, with the rank of president of the Board of War, was sent to look after the provisions for the army of the northern route (via Uliasutai). His able management of the mobilization of men and stabilization of the hostile Mongols won him praise from Emperor Kao-tsung, including the hereditary rank of viscount, and the rank of chamberlain in the Imperial Bodyguard. For a few months, in 1754, he was also acting military governor of Uliasutai. Early in the following year he was recalled to Peking for a military conference in regard to the Eleuths and his plan of action was approved. In 1755, with the rank of Ting Pei Chiang Chün 定北將軍 he was made commander-in-chief of the Northern Route Army with Amursana [q. v.] as assistant commander. A Western Route Army was commanded by Yung-ch'ang (see under Amursana). The advance of the two armies met little resistance from the Eleuths, and by the summer of 1755 Sungaria was pacified. Bandi, raised in hereditary rank to duke of the first class with the designation Ch'êng-yung 誠勇, and loaded with other honors from the emperor, was ordered to head a garrison at Ili and to look after the stabilization of the surrendered Eleuths.
Kao-tsung, however, had miscalculated in recalling the army so soon, and in leaving so small a garrison force with Bandi. He had also unwisely placed his confidence in the loyalty of Amursana who, dissatisfied with the rewards he had received, led the Eleuths in a rebellion which quickly spread throughout Sungaria. Bandi and his chief-of-staff, O-jung-an (see under O-êr-t'ai), eldest son of O-êr-t'ai, led a handful of loyalists in a hurried retreat, but they were soon surrounded. The two generals committed suicide and their men were slaughtered. The emperor at once ordered an army to avenge their death and, as a result, many Eleuths were put to the sword and a large number were removed to different localities (see under Chao-hui). Bandi and O-jung-an were accorded posthumous honors and were celebrated in the Temple of the Zealots of the Dynasty. The former was canonized as I-lieh 義烈 and the latter as Kang-lieh 剛烈. In honor of these two heroes a temple called Shuang-chung tz'ŭ 雙忠祠 was established where twice a year sacrifices were made. In 1761 an order was issued that Bandi's portrait be painted and hung in the Hall of Military Merits (see under Chao-hui). Bandi's son, Balu 巴祿 (d. 1770), who was permitted to inherit his father's rank of viscount, attained to the position of military lieutenant-governor of Chahar.
[1/318/3a; 3/349/1a; Howorth, H. H., History of the Mongols, 1876, Pt. I, pp. 533, 592, 651–659; Tung-hua lu, Ch'ien-lung 21:12; P'ing-ting Chun-ko-êr fang-lüeh chêng-pien (see under Fu-hêng), 20/20b; Balu, 3/287/42a).]
Rufus O. Suter