The signing of the Treaty of Nanking in 1842
permitted European business men to enter China, and
afforded Chinese emigrants an opportunity of going across
the oceans as well, though the imperial law of China
officially prohibited Chinese from emigrating.
The scale and volume of Chinese emigration between
1848 and 1888 were unprecedented in Chinese history. It
is estimated that more than two million Chinese moved to
the Malay Peninsula, Indo-China, Hawaii, the West Indies,
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