Includes bibliographical references (pages -501) and index.
1. Historical precedents & the multivalence of imperial touring -- 2. "Following ancestors" : the ethno-dynastic imperative of imperial touring, 1680s & 1740s -- 3. Putting a court on horseback : the logistics & politics of a moving court -- 4. The perils of peace & the politics of empire : wars, tours, & military readiness -- 5. "Returning to purity & simplicity" : the southern tours & intra-elite competition in an age of commercialization -- 6. The southern tours as cultural encompassment : the valorization of verse & accommodation of Han learning -- 7. The poetics & politics of Qianlong's encounter with Jiangnan -- 8. Popular perceptions & the primacy of ethno-dynastic politics, 1765-1785 -- Epilogue : imperial touring at the last, 1800-1820 -- App. A. A note on provincial preparations for Qianlong's southern tours -- App. B. An estimate of the overall costs for Qianlong's southern tours -- App. C. Southern tour recruitment examinations : a quantitative analysis.