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Like their predecessors, the Qing emperors required foreigners to live in a separate quarter of the city. The foreigners lived in buildings called “factories,” which included living quarters, warehouses, and offices for trade. (These factories did not manufacture anything; the name comes from “factor,” an older English word for “commercial agent.”) The Chinese called them “hongs,” or merchant shops.

Layout of the Foreign Factories
Layout of the Foreign
Factories, ca. 1825–1844
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Rise & Fall of the Canton Trade System III
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