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3 Back to the land now fly the geese ;
The duke comes not again.
He could with us remain.
Among us we have had.
Nor bid our hearts be sad !
The Lang poh ; allusive. THE PRAISE OF THE DUKE OF Chow, MORE DISTINGUISHED THROUGH HIS TRIALS.
The wolf in this piece is supposed to be an old one, in which the dew. lap and tail have grown to a very large size. He is further supposed to be making frantic efforts to escape ;-all in vain, for his own dewlap and tail are in his way.
1 Dewlap o'ergrown and heavy tail
Th' impatient wolf impede or trip.
Along his red shoes quiet slip.
Th’ impatient wolf trip or impede.
His fame unflawed by hasty deed !
THE BOOK OF POETRY.
MINOR ODES OF THE KINGDOM.
Decade of Luh Ming.
TITLE OF THE PART. This in Chinese is Sëaou Ya, which I have ex. pressed by “Minor odes of the Kingdom.” “Odes of the Kingdom" is not, indeed, a translation of Ya; but the phrase approximates to a description of what the pieces in this and the next Part are more nearly than any other I could think of. Ya is explained as meaning-Correct; and Lacharme translates the title by “Parvum Rectum," adding—"quia in hac parte mores describuntur, recti illi quidem, qui tamen nonnihil a recto deflectunt." But the pieces in this Part, as descriptive of manners, are not less correct, or less incorrect, as the case may be, than those in the next. The difference between them is—that the pieces in Part III. were appropriate to greater occasions, and those of Part II. to lesser. The former, as Choo He says, were sung at festal entertainments in the court; the latter, at gatherings of the feudal princes, and at their appearances at the royal court. The names “small” and “great," " major” and “minor,” may have had reference also to the length of the pieces taken as a whole, and to the style of the music to which they were sung, which is now lost; but we shall find that in the subject matter of the pieces there is a sufficient ground for such a distinction. As the Fung, or the compositions in the first Part, were produced in the different feudal States, the Ya were produced in the royal territory. The first twenty-two pieces of this Part are attributed, indeed, to the duke of Chow himself, and are distinguished from those that follow, as the odes of “Chow and the South” and of “Shaou and the South" are distinguished from those in the other Books of Part I. As there were “the correct Fung" and the “Fung degenerate," so there are the “correct Ya" and the" degenerate Ya ; " but as I have observed in the prolegomena, this distinction is of no importance. It was proper to sing the Ya only on great and solemn occasions at the royal court; in course of time they were used at the feudal courts, and even by ministers of these, as in the services of the Ke family in Loo, in the time of Confucius (Ana. III, ii.); but this was a usurpation, a consequence of the decay into which the House of Chow fell.
TITLE OF THE BOOK.—“ The decade of Luh Ming." The pieces of Part I. are all arranged under the names of the States to which they be. longed. In Parts II. and III., however, they are collected in tens, and classified under the name of the first piece in each Collection. The only exception in respect to the number, is the third Book of Part III.-It will not be recessary after this to say anything on the names of the different Books.
The Luh Ming; allusive. A FESTAL ODE, SANG AT ENTERTAINMENTS TO THE KING'S MINISTERS, AND GUESTS FROM THE FEUDAL STATES.
In the piece we read of guests merely, and not of ministers or officers. But the ministers and high officers would become the king's guests, when feasted as the piece describes. It is referred, though not by Choo, to the time of king Wån.
1 With sounds of happiness the deer
Browse on the celery of the meads.
With guests renowned for noble deeds.
Till all its tongues in movement heave.
The precious gifts the guests receive.
How duty's highest aim to reach.
The southernwood crop in the meads.
Distinguished for their worthy deeds !
Whate'er is mean; to chiefs they give
They show the life they ought to live.
Till each the banquet's joy shall share. 3 With sounds of happiness the deer
The salsola crop in the fields.
Each lute for them its music yields.
The joy harmonious to prolong;
And with my spirits rich crown all
The cups to cheer the festive throng.
II. The Sze mon ; narrative and allusive. A FESTAL ODE, COMPLIMENTARY TO AN OFFICER ON HIS RETURN FROM AN EXPEDITION, CELEBRATING THE UNION IN HIM OF LOYAL DUTY AND FILIAL FEELING.
There is nothing in the ode itself to suggest its being composed for a festal occasion, and to compliment the officer who narrates his story in it. Both Maou and Choo, however, agree in the above account of it. It was not written, they say, by the officer himself, but was put into his mouth, as it were, to express the sympathy of his entertainer with him, and the appreciation of his devotion to duty. There appear strikingly in it the union of family affections and loyal duty, which we met with in several of the pieces in Part I.; and the merit of king Wăn, to whose times it is assigned, shines out in the allowance which he makes for those affections.
1 On dashed my four steeds, without halt, without stay,
Though toilsome and winding from Chow was the way. I wished to return,—but the monarch's command Forbade that his business be done with slack hand;
And my heart was with sadness oppressed. 2 On dashed my four steeds; I ne'er slackened the reins.
They snorted and panted,—all white, with black manes. I wished to return, but our sovereign's command Forbade that his business be done with slack hand;
And I dared not to pause or to rest. 3 Unresting the Filial doves speed in their flight,
Ascending, then sweeping swift down from the height, Now grouped on the oaks. The king's high command Forbade that his business be done with slack hand ;
And my father I left, sore distressed.
Now fanning the air, and anon they alight
command Forbade that his business be done with slack hand ;
Of my mother I thought with sad breast.
5 My four steeds I harnessed, all white and black-maned,
Which straight on their way, fleet and emulous, strained.
For my mother my care to attest.
The Hwang-hrang chay hwa; allusive and narrative. An ODE APPROPRIATE TO THE DESPATCH OF AN ENVOY ; COMPLIMENTARY TO HIM, AND SUGGESTING INSTRUCTIONS AS TO THE DISCHARGE OF HIS DUTY.
This piece also is referred to the time of king Wăn.
1 As the flower that blooms bright on the mountain or lea,
Is the legate, whom charged with high mission we see.
2 “Fresh and young are my steeds,” so he sang as he
sped, “ And the six reins in hand look with ointment o’er
spread. So hurrah! my good horses, dash on at your best,
As now here, and now there, I am pushing my quest. 3 “Many-spotted my coursers, whose hues finely blend,
And the six reins in hand, soft as silk, freely bend.
As now here, and now there, I am searching for news. 4 “With black manes and white coats are the steeds of
my car, And the gleam of the six glossy reins shines afar. So hurrah! my good horses, ply muscle and leg,
As now here, and now there, for wise counsel I beg. 5 “Dark, with white interspersed, are the coursers I drive; 'Gainst my hands, the reins grasping, in vain would they
strive. So hurrah! my good horses, speed onwards and fly, As now here, and now there, much inquiring I pry.”