Z horizontal Cheng total
Zheng Chenggong (Chinese 鄭成功 / 郑成功, Pinyin Zhèng Chénggōng, Tongyong Pinyin Jhèng Chénggong, W.-G. Cheng Ch'eng-kung, Pe̍h-ōe-jī Tēⁿ Sêng-kong; Japanese Tei Seikō), mostly also Koxinga (Chinese國姓爺 / 国姓爷, Pinyin Guóxìngyé, Tongyong Pinyin Gúosìngyé, Pe̍h-ōe-jī Kok-sèng-iâ/Kok-sìⁿ-iâ; Japanese Kokusen'ya, * August 1624 in Hirado, Japan, † June 23 1662 in Tainan, Taiwan) was an army commander and privateer during the transition from China's Ming to Qing dynasties. Shortly before his death, he founded the Dongning Kingdom in Taiwan.
Family name bestowed by the emperor as a reward: Zhu (朱. Zhu was the family name of the Ming emperors. Being given the imperial family name was considered a special distinction, comparable to being admitted into the imperial family. Awarded by the Prince of Tang ("Emperor Longwu") the Southern Ming Dynasty)
Common Name: Koxinga or Coxinga is the version of the Japanese reading Kokusen'ya used in Dutch documents of his Chinese epithet Guóxìngyé (國姓爺, "lord with the imperial surname").
Birth name: Zheng Sen (鄭森, Zhèng Sēn)
Childhood name: Fukumatsu (福松; Zheng's name when he lived in Japan as a child)
Maturity name: Damu (大木, Dàmù)
Official name: "Prince of Yanping Prefecture and Great General for Combating the Emperor's Enemies" (延平郡王招討大將軍), bestowed by Prince Gui (桂王) of the Southern Ming Dynasty
Zheng Chenggong's parents were Zheng Zhilong (鄭芝龍, Zhèng Zhīlóng, † 1661), a Chinese trader and pirate, and the Japanese woman Tagawa Matsu (Japanese 田川松 or Chinese 翁氏, Pinyin Wēngshì, * 1601 † 1646). He was born in August 1624 on the small island of Hirado, now part of Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan and lived there until he was seven years old. He then moved back to China's Quanzhou in Fujian Province with his parents.
His father Zheng Zhilong was the son of a minor civil servant who went to Macau to do business with the Europeans. He was baptized and often appears in Western sources under the name Nicholas Iquan Gaspard, or shortened to Quon, Iquon, Iquam, Equan, etc. In 1625 he founded the Shibazhi (十八芝), an association of 18 people who all used the character zhi (芝) in their name and engaged in both trade and piracy. For a time he cooperated with the Dutch East India Company and severely attacked the ships of the Southern Ming, weakened by fighting with the Manchu (Qing) advancing from the north. In 1628, however, the Ming won him over and appointed him commander of the Ming fleet. In the following years he was able to further expand his influence and wealth through trade, smuggling and piracy.
In 1644, the Ming lost Beijing to insurgents led by Li Zicheng. After Emperor Chongzhen hanged himself, Ming general Wu Sangui called in the Manchu, who had become a formidable military power in recent decades, and recaptured the city. Not interested in restoring Ming rule, the Manchu installed their own dynasty, the Qing, as the new rulers of China.
However, Qing rule over China was initially very limited to a specific region, and various Ming princes tried to establish themselves as counter-emperors, especially south of the Yangtze River. One of these, Longwu, was able to settle around Fuzhou in 1645 with the help of Zheng Zhilong. The following year, however, he was betrayed to the Qing and killed by Zheng, who withdrew his troops from Fuzhou. However, since they mistrusted him, they took him hostage to Pe