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2 Black is every plant become;
Every man is torn from home.
As if we no feelings had ! 3 Not rhinoceroses we !
Tigers do we care to be ?
Are to us a hateful fate. 4 Long-tailed foxes pleased may hide
'Mong the grass, where they abide. We, in box-carts slowly borne, On the great roads plod and mourn.
THE BOOK OF POETRY.
GREATER ODES OF THE KINGDOM.
Decade of King Wăn.
TITLE OF THE PART. Little needs to be added here to what I have said on the title of Part II. The term "greater" is given to the pieces because of their greater length, and the themes of several of them being of a more exalted kind,—the history and virtues of the ancestors of the House of Chow, and of the founders of the dynasty. The first eighteen pieces are “the correct Ya," and are attributed to the duke of Chow.
TITLE OF THE BOOK. As in the last part, the odes should be arranged in tens; and each Decade takes its name from that of the first ode in it. In this Book Wăn is mainly the subject of the first eight pieces, and king Woo is more prominent in the other two.
The Wăn wang ; narrative. CELEBRATING KING WĂN, DEAD AND ALIVE, AS THE FOUNDER OF THE DYNASTY OF CHOW, SHOWING HOW HIS VIRTUES DREW TO HIM THE FAVOURING REGARD OF HEAVEN, AND MADE HIM A BRIGHT PATTERN TO HIS DESCENDANTS AND THEIR MINISTERS,
It is to be borne in mind that in this and other pieces Wån is spoken of as “king Wăn," as having been kinged by the duke of Chow after the subjugation of the Yin or Shang dynasty, when Woo, Wăn's son, in his old age received the appointment to the throne ;—see " The Doctrine of the Mean,” XVIII. 3. Wăn never assumed the title of king himself. The appointment of Heaven lighted on him, but it took effect only when his son Fah-king W00-became the sovereign of China.
The dynasty which Chow superseded is called indifferently Yin or Shang, and sometimes Yin-shang, by a combination of these names. The descendants of its kings, appearing at the court of Chow, assisted at the sacrifices of the king in his ancestral temple, and continued to wear the insignia of rank belonging to them as of the royal House of Yin.
1 The royal Wan now rests on high,
Enshrined in brightness of the sky.
2 A strong-willed, earnest king was Wan,
And still his fame rolls widening on.
3 More lustrous still from age to age,
All reverent plans their zeal engage;
4 Deep were Wan's thoughts, sustained his ways;
His reverence lit its trembling rays.
5 Now each to Chow his homage pays,
So dark and changing are Heaven's ways.
While still, they do not cast aside
6 Remember him from whom it springs ;
Let this give to your virtue wings.
7 'Tis hard to keep high Heaven's decree !
O sin not, or you cease to be.
The Ta ming; narrative. How THE APPOINTMENT OF HEAVEN RESTED ON KING WAN, AND DESCENDED TO HIS SON, KING WOO, WHO OVERTHREW THE DYNASTY OF YIN OR SHANG ;-CELEBRATING ALSO THE MOTHER AND THE WIFE OF WAN.
Of Wăn's father I shall speak particularly on ode VII. He married, as st. 2 here tells us, a Jin, the second daughter of the prince of Che, a principality somewhere in the royal domain of Yin. Chinese writers celebrate her—T'ae-jin-in the highest terms, saying that her instruction of Wăn commenced while he was yet in her womb. “Her eyes looked on no improper sight; her ears listened to no licentious sound ; and her lips uttered no word of pride."
Wăn's own wife was the famous Tae-sze, of the State of Sin, north of the river Hëah, in the present district of Hoh-yang, in Trung Chow, Shen-se. The principal city must have been near the Wei.
The wild or plain of Muh, where the deciding battle between Chow and Shang was fought, was in the present Ho-nan, not far from the capital of Shang. Of Shang-foo, who appears to have been Woo's principal officer and supporter on the occasion, I have spoken in the introductory note to the Odes of Ts'e, Part I.
1 Majestic Heaven from kings below, That they illustrious virtue show,
With strictest law requires. They must not on its grace rely, Nor think that they can change defy. The House of Yin long ruled the land, Called to the throne by Heaven's command. But its last monarch, from it driven, Lost by supreme decree of Heaven
The kingdom of his sires.
2 What time in Chow ruled our king Ke,
In the domain of Yin,
And wedded her, T'ae-jin.
No duty left undone.
The child was our king Wan.
3 This our king Wan in all his way
Did watchful reverence display,
Him with great favour crowned.
Wan as their Head they owned.
4 Throughout the land Heaven sent its glance; Whom should it to the throne advance ?
To Wan came the decree.
She who his bride should be.