Subtypes Guilds - Craft Guilds - China

Craft guilds in China were founded at the end of the sixteenth century, but these organizations blossomed two centuries later, during the eighteenth century. In the twentieth century the number of guilds began to decline as a result of government interference.

Similarities with the European guilds were:

  • their religious functions and civic functions (welfare);
  • the master – journeymen relationship. Also journeymen were not allowed to set up their own associations.  

Differences with the European guilds were:

  • the relationship with the political order;
  • no formal membership;
  • their reliance on extended family structures.



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