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Tu Duc put him to death and intensified his persecutions simply because the leader of the revolt was a Catholic.

After de Genouilly attacked Tourane and took over the south-eastern provinces, on 15 December 1859, Tu Duc issued another edict, this time aiming at those mandarins who were Catholic. They were to be stripped of all grades and functions, and those who refused to disown their faith were to be killed immediately if they held high positions. In 17 January i860, Tu Duc promulgated another decree declaring that he would not grant freedom to the ta dao, even at the request of the 'barbarian foreigners'. In July of the same year, an edict was issued against religious sisters, especially the Lovers of the Cross, a congregation founded by Pierre Lambert de la Motte.

The most devastating edict against Vietnamese Christians was still to come. On 5 August 1861, in an attempt to destroy Christianity at its roots, Tu Duc promulgated the so-called 'dispersal' edict which included the following measures: (i) dispersal of all Christians, even those who had renounced their faith, into non-Christian villages; (2) supervision of every Christian by five non-Christians in every village; (3) destruction of all Christian villages and communities; (4) distribution of all the lands owned by Christians to non-Christians who would cultivate them and pay taxes to the court on their earnings; (5) branding of the cheeks of Christians, on the one side with the words ta dao and on the other with the names of their villages and counties. As a result, hundreds of thousands of Catholic families were dispossessed and their members separated from each other, and the practice of the faith made impossible.

Politically and militarily, however, Tu Duc was losing everywhere. As already mentioned, in 1862 he was forced to accept the Saigon Treaty whose provisions included the grant of religious freedom to Christians. As a result ofthis treaty, at the end of 1862 Tu Duc issued an amnesty, which declared that all Christian old men, old women and children would be freed from imprisonment, whether they had renounced their faith or not. All Christian officials who had sincerely renounced their faith would also be liberated, but ifthey lived in an all-Christian village, they had to be detained where they were, even if they had renounced their faith. Officials as well as young men who had not renounced their faith were to be detained until they sincerely abandoned their faith. All lands, houses and possessions which had been confiscated from Christians would be restored to them.

On i5 March i876, at France's request, Tu Duc renewed his edict of toleration which included the following provisions: terminating all acts of persecution of Catholics, freedom of religion, abolition of all restrictions regarding the number of Catholics meeting in churches, equal treatment of Christians

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