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From 200 BC to 1911 AD the dynasties of China produced codes both as instruments of government and as a means of enforcing Confucian morality. This introduction examines the unique penal codes of imperial China and the areas of law regulated by them.
After outlining the historic background to the codes, the book analyzes the rules surrounding killing, physical injury, theft, damage to property, marriage, adoption and succession. The liability and privileges of officials are also discussed, and there is a summary on the theoretical nature of penal law.