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read Not, Lin. Sin


PROLEGOMENA

CHAPTER I.

OF THE CHINESE CLASSICS GENERALLY.

SECTION 1.

BOOKS INCLUDED UNDER THE NAME OF THE CHINESE CLASSICS.

1. The Books now recognized as of highest authority in China are comprehended under the denominations of “The five King,ı and “The four Shoo."2 The term King is of textile origin, and signifies the warp threads of a web, and their adjustment. An easy application of it is to denote what is regular and insures regularity. As used with reference to books, it indicates their authority on the subjects of which they treat. “The five King” are the five canonical Works, containing the truth upon the highest subjects from the sages of China, and which should be received as law by all generations. The term Shoo simply means Writings or Books.

2. The five King are:—the Yih,3 or, as it has been styled, “The Book of Changes;" the Shoo,4 or “The Book of History;" the She,5 or “ The Book of Poetry;" the Le Ke, or “Record of Rites;" and the Ch'un Ts'ew, or “Spring and Autumn,” a chronicle of events, extending from 721 to 480, B.C. The authorship, or compilation rather, of all these works is loosely attributed to Confucius. But much of the Le Ke is from later hands. Of the Yih, the Shoo, and the She, it is only in the first that we find additions from the philosopher himself, in the shape of appendixes. The Ch'un Ts'ew is the only one of the five King which can rightly be described as of his own “making." 1 . 2 14 4 3 4 # F5 FK 6 The C. 7 TK.

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" The four Books” is an abbreviation for “ The Books of the four Philosophers.” 8 The first is the Lun Yu,9 or “Digested Conversations,” being occupied chiefly with the sayings of Confucius. He is the philosopher to whom it belongs. It appears in this Work under the title of “Confucian Analects." The second is the Ta Hëõ, 10 or “Great Learning,” now commonly attributed to Tsăng Sin, 11 a disciple of the sage. He is the philosopher of it. The third is the Chung Yung, 12 or “Doctrine of the Mean," ascribed to Kóung Keih, 13 the grandson of Confucius. He is the philosopher of it. The fourth contains the works of Mencius.

3. This arrangement of the Classical Books, which is commonly supposed to have originated with the scholars of the Sung dynasty, is defective. The Great Learning and the Doctrine of the Mean are both found in the Record of Rites, being the forty-second and thirtyfirst Books respectively of that compilation, according to the usual arrangement of it.

4. The oldest enumerations of the Classical Books specify only the five King. The Yo Ke, or “Record of Music,"14 the remains of which now form one of the Books in the Le Ke, was sometimes added to those, making with them the six King. A division was also made into nine King, consisting of the Yih, the She, the Shoo, the Chow Le, la or “Ritual of Chow," the E Le, 16 or “Ceremonial Usages,” the Le Ke, and the three annotated eclitions of the Ch'un Ts'ew, 17 by Tsok'ew Wing, 18 Kung-yang Kaou, 19 and Kuh Lëang-ch'ih.20 In the famous compilation of the classical Books, undertaken by order of T'ae-tsung, the second emperor of the Tang dynasty (B.C. 627649), and which appeared in the reign of his successor, there are thirteen King ; viz., the Yih, the She, the Shoo, the three editions of the Ch'un Ts'ew, the Le Ke, the Chow Le, the E Le, the Confucian Analects, the Urh Ya,21 a sort of ancient dictionary, the Heaou King, 22 or “Classic of Filial Piety," and the works of Mencius.

5. A distinction, however, was made among the Works thus comprehended under the same common name, and Mencius, the Lun Yu, the Ta Höð, the Chung Yung, and the Heaou King were spoken of as the seaou King, or “smaller Classics." It thus appears, 8 四子之書論語 10 大學 11 會參, 12

中庸 12 孔 1. 樂記:周禮· 16 儀禮· 17 春秋三傳 18 左丘明, 19 公羊 高 20 穀梁赤· 21 爾雅, 22 孝經

contrary to the ordinary opinion on the subject, that the Ta Höð and Chung Yung had been published as separate treatises before the Sung dynasty, and that the Four Books, as distinguished from the greater Kiny, had also previously found a place in the literature of China.23

SECTION II.

THE AUTHORITY OF THE CHINESE CLASSICS.

1. This subject will be discussed in connection with each separate Work, and it is only designed here to exhibit generally the evidence on which the Chinese Classics claim to be received as genuine productions of the time to which they are referred.

2. In the memoirs of the Former Han dynasty (B.C. 201—A.1). 24), we have one chapter which we may call the History of Litera- -, ture. It commences thus :-“After the death of Confucius, 2 there was an end of his exquisite words; and when his seventy disciples had passed away, violence began to be done to their meaning. It came about that there were five different editions of the Ch'un Ts'ew, four of the She, and several of the Yih. Amid the disorder and collision of the warring States (B.C. 480–221), truth and falschood were still more in a state of warfare, and a sad confusion marked the words of the various scholars. Then came the calamity inflicted under the Ts'in dynasty (B.C. 220–200), when the literary monuments were destroyed by fire, in order to keep the people in ignorance. But, by-and-by, there arose the Han dynasty, which set itself to remedy the evil wrought by the Ts'in. Great efforts were made to collect slips and tablets, and the way was thrown wide open for the bringing in of Books. In the time of the emperor Heaou-woot (B.C. 139–86), portions of Books being wanting and tablets lost, so that ceremonies and music were suffering great

23 For the statements in the two last paragraphs, sce 西河合集大學學證文 ,

前漢書本志, 第十卷藝文志。仲尼.3篇籍-ships and

on bamboo, which supplied in those days the place of paper. 4 LE***

tablets op

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damage, he was moved to sorrow, and said, “I am very sad for this.' He therefore formed the plan of Repositories, in which the Books might be stored, and appointed officers to transcribe Books on an extensive scale, embracing the works of the various scholars, that they might all be placed in the Repositories. The emperor Shingó (B.c. 31-4), finding that a portion of the Books still continued dispersed or missing, commissioned Ch'in Nung, the superintendent of guests, to search for undiscovered Books throughout the empire, and by special edict ordered the chief of the Banqueting House, Lew Heang,7 to examine the classical Works, along with the commentaries on them, the writings of the scholars, and all poetical productions; the master-controller of infantry, Jin Hwang,' to ex: amine the Books on the art of war; the grand historiographer, Yin Hëen,' to examine the Books treating of the art of numbers (i.e., divination); and the imperial physician, Le Ch‘oo-kõ,10 to examine the books on medicine. Whenever any Book was done with., Heang forth with arranged it, indexed it, and made a digest of it, which was presented to the emperor.

While the undertaking was in progress, Heang died, and the emperor Gae (B.C. 5—A.D.) appointed his son, Hin, 11 a master of the imperial carriages, to complete lis father's work. On this, Hin collected all the books, and presented a report of them, under seven divisions."

The first of these divisions seems to have been a general cata. logue, 12 containing perhaps only the titles of the works included in the other six. The second embraced the classical Works. 13 From the abstract of it, which is preserved in the chapter referred to, we find that there were 294 collections of the Yih-king, from 13 different individuals or editors ;14 412 collections of the Shoo-king, from 9 different individuals; 416 volumes of the She-king, from 6 different individuals ;15 of the Books of Rites, 555 collections, from 13

5孝成皇帝,竭者陳農:7光祿大夫劉向.8步兵校 尉任宏太史令尹成:10 侍醫李柱國,11侍中奉車都 尉, 12 輯略 13 六藝略:14 八易十三家,二百九十四篇 How much of the whole work was contained in each f, it is impossible for us to ascertain. P. Regis says:="Pien, quemadmodum Gallice dicimus « des pieces d'eloquence, de poesie.” 15 , + DY -t. The collections of the She-king are mentioned under the name of Keuen, 'sections,'' portions. Had p'öen been used, it might have been understood of individual odes. This change of terms shows that by p'ëen in the other summaries, we are not to understand single blocks or chapters.

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