The Double Ten Day is celebrated in Taiwan as a national holiday. However, it may be one of the most hard-to-understand days to explain to anyone not extremely well-versed in Chinese history (yes CHINESE history.) It is also the one day that may provoke the most rage and debate.
Hopefully you’ll understand more with this.
Double Ten is observed on October 10 every year, but what does it celebrate?
October 10 is…
Taiwan’s birthday? No.
Chinese Nationalist Party’s birthday? Yes.
HOWEVER, Double Ten Day is NOT a celebration of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s birthday. Instead it is the celebration of the start of the Wuchang Uprising which later led to the Xinhai Revolution.
Wuchang Uprising & Xinhai Revolution
Wuchang uprising marks the start of the end of the Chinese dynasties. Unhappy with the Manchu controlled Qing dynasty, revolutionaries in China were gathering to overthrow the Qing dynaster. Amongst these revolutionaries was Dr. Sun Yet-Sen, who helped found the Tongmenghui (同盟會.) Sun Yet-Sen spent much of his time overseas trying to get funding for the uprising. This was also because Sun was exiled from China since a previous Guangzhou uprising (1895.)
After many provinces ceded from the Qing Dynasty, Sun returned to China and was elected the first president of the Provisional Government of the Republic of China on Jan 1, 1912.
The end of the Qing Dynasty was finalized with the last emperor Puyi abdicating his throne on Feb 12, 1912.
Founding of the Republic of China
Taiwan during Uprising and Revolution
While China was going through major changes from dynasty to republic, Taiwan was under the Japanese empire. A typhoon has just hit Taiwan so much of the news was about restoring the public infrastructure on the island.
The effects of the revolution on Taiwan were that as of an international incident of a trading partner. The impact could be seen as the prices for imported goods has risen.
Interestingly enough, in 1912, as the ROC was being established, on Taiwan, the office building of the Governor–General of Taiwan had started it’s construction. This building is now used as the Presidential building of Republic of China.
Double Ten in Taiwan
With the Republic of China retreating and establishing itself in Taiwan, this day is now the national day of Taiwan. In it’s early day, there would be military parades outside of the presidential building. This has now evolved to include athletes and disaster response personnel, transforming it to a celebration the nation’s uniformed servicemen and women rather than a show of military might.
Celebrations can also be seen by many Taiwan communities overseas.
Double Ten Day: What We Think