Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period/Gubadai
GUBADAI 顧八代 ( 文起), d. Jan. 1709, was a Manchu of the Bordered Yellow Banner with the clan-name Irgen Gioro (伊爾根覺羅). In 1659 as a private of the Guards Division (護軍) he followed the army into Yunnan in an expedition against a supporter of the last Ming claimant to the throne. Afterwards he held various minor positions at the capital and studied history and astronomy. When Emperor Shêng-tsu personally examined the bannermen officials in 1675 Gubadai passed with the highest grade, and so was promoted to a reader in the Hanlin Academy. During the Wu San-kuei [q. v.] rebellion Gubadai was sent (1677) to assist a general, Manggitu 莽依圖 (clan-name 兆佳, posthumous name 襄壯, d. 1680), in Kwangtung in the campaign to retake Kwangsi. After the completion of the campaign Manggitu is said to have drawn up a memorial giving Gubadai all the credit for the victory, but this Gubadai burned, insisting that credit should go to the whole staff. After Manggitu's death (1680) Gubadai was appointed aid to Laita 賚塔 (surname 那穆都魯; posthumous name 襄毅, d. Jan. 1685), whom he followed into Yunnan (1681). With this triumphant expedition the Wu San-kuei rebellion was crushed. In 1684 Gubadai was ordered to teach in the palace school for princes, and a year later was appointed to serve concurrently as one of the directors in the office compiling the P'ing-ting san ni fang-lüeh (see under Han T'an). In 1687 he was made junior vice-president, and two years later president, of the Board of Ceremonies.
At this time there was persecution of Christians in Chekiang, fostered in 1691 by the governor, Chang P'êng-ko [q. v.], an ardent Confucianist. Early in 1692 the missionaries in Peking addressed a plea to Emperor Shêng-tsu on behalf of their colleagues in Chekiang. The matter was referred to the Board of Ceremonies. As head of the Board, Gubadai, in compliance with the emperor's wishes, reported that, whereas the missionaries had rendered valuable services as astronomers, as manufacturers of cannon used in the war against Wu San-kuei, and as interpreters in negotiations with Russia (see under Songgotu), and whereas they were law-abiding and peaceful, they should be allowed to conduct their missionary work without hindrance on the part of local officials. The emperor gave his approval to Gubadai's report and the missionaries enjoyed a period of freedom in their work (see under Yang Kuang-hsien).
In 1693 Gubadai, charged with being incompetent, was removed from the Board of Ceremonies and, as holder of a minor hereditary rank, was ordered to continue his services in the palace school for princes. In 1696, when Yin-chên [q. v.], later Emperor Shih-tsung, commanded the soldiers of the Plain Red Banner which accompanied Emperor Shêng-tsu to Mongolia against Galdan [q. v.], Gubadai was appointed to Yin-chên's staff. In 1698 Gubadai retired. When he died in January 1709, his funeral was attended by Yin-chên. In 1726, four years after Yin-chên ascended the throne, he ordered that Gubadai be posthumously restored to his former ranks and canonized as Wên-tuan 文端. In 1730, when the Temple of Eminent Statesmen was established, Gubadai's name was placed in it.
Gubadai's grandson, Ku-tsung 顧琮 (Fang Pao). Because of his contribution in compiling some mathematical works (see under Ho Kuo-tsung), Ku-tsung became an official in 1722, and was made a censor early in 1726. Thereafter he served in various capacities, especially as salt censor at Tientsin (1726) and as director-general for conservancy of waterways in Chihli (1733–36, 1737–41), and in Shantung (1748–54). He was famous for his strict observance of the Confucian rules of conduct and for his devotion to the study of the Classics under Fang Pao, Li Fu [qq. v.] and other scholars. He also was a connoisseur of lacquered trays.用方, 1685–1755, Jan.), was selected, about the year 1713, to study mathematics and to serve in the Mêng-yang chai (see under
[1/274/2a; 3/51/34a; 3/170/15a; Favier, A., Peking, 1897, pp. 186–89, with portrait of Gubadai.]
Rufus O. Suter