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THE BOOK OF POETRY FROM THE TIME OF CONFUCIUS TILL THE GENERAL ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF THE PRESENT TEXT.
1. Of the attention paid to the study of the cius to the dy. Book of Poetry from the death of Confucius nasty of Ts'in.
sm. to the rise of the Ts'in dynasty, we have abundant evidence in the writings of his grandson Tszesze, of Mencius, and of Seun K‘ing. One of the acknowledged distinctions of Mencius is his acquaintance with the odes, of which his canon for the study of them prefixed to 'my larger volumes is a proof; and Seun K‘ing survived the extinction of the Chow dynasty, and lived on into the times of Ts'in.
2. The Poems shared in the calamity which all the other classical Works, excepting the Yih, suffered, when the tyrant of Ts'in issued his edict for their destruction. But I have shown, in the prolegomena to vol. I., that only The Poems a few years elapsed between the execution of
res his decree and the establishment of the Han of Tsin. dynasty, which distinguished itself by its labours to restore the monuments of ancient literature. The odes were all, or very nearly all, recovered ;' and the reason assigned for this is, that their preservation depended on the memory of scholars more than on their inscription upon tablets and silk. We shall find reason to accept this statement.
3. Three different texts of the odes made their appearThree differ- ance early in the Han dynasty, known as the ent toxts. She of Loo, of Ts'e, and of Han; that is, the
were all recovered after the fires
In the last section reference was made to the number of the odes, given by Confucius himself as 300. He might mention the round number, not thinking it worth while to say that they were 305 or 311. The Classic now contains the text of 305 pieces, and the titles of other 6. It is contended by Choo and many other scholars, that in Confucius' time the text of those six was already lost, or rather that the titles were namas of tunes only. More likely is the view that the text of these pieces was lost after Confucius' death.
Book of Poetry was recovered from three different quarters.
[i.] Lëw Hin's catalogue of the Works in the imperial library of the earlier Han dynasty commences, on the She King, with a Collection of the three Texts in 28 chapters, which is followed by two Works of commentary on the Text of Loo. The former of them was by a The Text of Shin P'ei, of whom we have some account in Loo. the Literary Biographies of Han. He was a native of Loo, and had received his own knowledge of the odes from a scholar of Tsée, called Fow K‘ëw-pih. He was resorted to by many disciples, whom he taught to repeat the odes, but without entering into discussion with them on their interpretation. When the first emperor of the Han dynasty was passing through Loo, Shin followed him to the capital of that Štate, and had an interview with him. The emperor Woo, in the beginning of his reign (B.C. 139), sent for him to court when he was more than 80 years old ; and he appears to have survived a considerable number of years beyond that advanced age. The names of ten of his disciples are given, all men of eminence, and among them K'ung Gan-kwoh. A little later, the most noted adherent of the school of Loo was a Wei Höen, who arrived at the dignity of prime minister, and published “the She of Loo in Stanzas and Lines.” Up and down in the Books of Han and Wei are to be found quotations of the odes, which must have been taken from the professors of the Loo recension; but neither the text nor the writings on it long survived. They are said to have perished during the Tsin dynasty (A.D. 265—419). When the catalogue of the Suy library was made, none of them were existing.
[ii.] The Han catalogue mentions five different works on the She of Tsée. This text was from a Yuen Koo, a native of Ts'e, about whom we learn, from the The Text of same chapter of Literary Biographies, that he Tsée. was one of the Great scholars of the court in the time of the emperor King (B.c. 155—142), a favourite with him, and specially distinguished for his knowledge of the odes and his advocacy of orthodox Confucian doctrine. He died in the next reign of Woo, more than 90 years old ;
"Proleg., Vol. I. p. 4.
and we are told that all the scholars of Ts'e who got a name in those days for their acquaintance with the She sprang from his school. Among his disciples is the wellknown name of Hëa-how Ch'e-ch'ang, who communicated his acquisitions to How Ts'ang, a native of the present Shan-tung province, and author of two of the Works in the Han catalogue. How had three disciples of eminence, -Yih Fung, Sëaou Wang.che, and K'wang Hăng. From them the Text of Ts'e was transmitted to others, whose names, with quotations from their writings, are scattered through the Books of Han. Neither text nor commentaries, however, had a better fate than the She of Loo. There is no mention of them in the catalogue of Suy. They are said to have perished even before the rise of the Tsin dynasty.
[iii.) The Text of Han was somewhat more fortunate. The Han catalogue contains the titles of four works, all
The Text of by Han Ying, whose surname is thus perpetuHan Ying. ated in the text of the She which emanated from him. His biography follows that of How Ts'ang. He was a native, we are told, of the province of Yen, and a “Great scholar” in the time of the emperor Wán (B.C. 178—156), and on into the reigns of King and Woo. “He laboured,” it is said, “to unfold the meaning of the odes, and published an · Explanation of the Text,' and
Illustrations of the She,' containing several myriads of characters. His text was somewhat different from the texts of the She of Loo and Ts'e, but substantially of the same meaning." Of course Han founded a school; but while almost all the writings of his followers soon perished, both the Works just mentioned continued on through the various dynasties to the time of Sung. The Suy catalogue contains the titles of his text and two Works on it; the Tang those of his text and his Illustrations; but when we come to the catalogue of Sung, published in the time of the Yuen dynasty, we find only the Illustrations, in 10 Books or chapters ; and Gow-yang Sëw tells us that in his time this was all of Han that remained. It continues, entire or nearly so, to the present day.
4. But while these three different recensions of the She all disappeared, with the exception of a single frag. ment, their unhappy fate was owing not more to the
the ancient ting at the changi
convulsions by which the empire was often rent, and the consequent destruction of literary monuments, such as we have witnessed in our own day in China, than to the appearance of a fourth Text which displaced them by its superior correctness, and the ability with A fourth Test: which it was advocated and commented on. that of Maou. This was what is called the “ Text of Maou.” It came into the field later than the others; but the Han catalogue contains the She of Maou in 29 chapters, and a commentary on the text in 30. According to Ch‘ing K'ang-shing, the author of this commentary was a native of Loo, known as Maou Hăng or the Greater Maou, who was a disciple, we are told by Luh Tih-ming, of Seun K'ing. The Work is lost. He had communicated his knowledge of the She, however, to another Maou,-Maou Chang, or the Lesser Maou,—who was “a Great scholar” at the court of king Hëen of Ho-këen. This king Höen was one of the most diligent labourers in the recovery of the ancient Books, and presented Maou's text and the Work of Hăng at the court of the emperor King,-probably in B.c. 129. Chang himself published his “Explanations of the She,” in 29 chapters, which still reinain; but it was not till the reign of the emperor P‘ing (A.D. 145) that Maou's recension was received into the imperial college, and took its place along with those of Loo, Ts'e, and Han.
The Chinese critics have carefully traced the line of scholars who had charge of Maou's text and explanations down to the reign of Pring ;-Kwan Chéang-k‘ing, Heae Yen-nëen, and Seu Gaou. To Seu Gaou succeeded Ch'in Këah, who was in office at the court of the usurper Wang Mang (A.D. 9–22). He transmitted his treasures to Sëay Man-k'ing, who himself commented on the She; and from him they passed to the well-known Wei Kingchung or Wei Hwang, of whom I shall have to speak in the next chapter. From this time the most famous scholars addicted themselves to Maou's text. Këa Kwei (A.D. 25—101) published a Work on the “ Meaning and Difficulties of Maou's She,” having previously compiled a
The petty kingdom of Ho-këen embraced three of the districts in the present department of the same name in Chih-le, and one of the two districts of Shin Chow. King Hëen's name was Tih.
digest of the differences between its text and those of the other three recensions, at the command of the emperor Ming (A.D. 58–75). Ma Yung (A.D. 69–165) followed with another commentary ;—and we arrive at Ch'ing Heuen, or Ch‘ing K'ang-shing, who wrote his “Supplementary Commentary to the She of Maou," and his “ Chronological Introduction to the She.” The former of these two Works complete, and portions of the latter, are still extant. That the former has great defects as well as great merits, there can be no question ; but it took possession of the literary world of China, and after the time of Ch‘ing the other three texts were little heard of, while the names of the commentators on Maou's text and his explanations of it speedily become very numerous. Maou's grave is still shown near the village of Tsun-fuh, in the departmental district of Ho-këen.
5. Returning now to what I said in the 2nd paragraph, it will be granted that the appearance of three different and independent texts, immediately after the rise of the Han dynasty, affords the most satisfactory evidence of
The different the recovery of the Book of Poetry, as it had texts guaranter continued from the time of Confucius. Unthe recovered fortunately only fragments of them remain
now; but we have seen that they were diligently compared by competent scholars with one another, and with the fourth text of Maou, which subsequently got the field to itself. In the body of the larger Work attention is called to many of their peculiar readings; The texts were and it is clear to me that their variations
down from one another and from Maou's text arose citation from the alleged fact that the preservation of the odes was owing to their being transmitted by recitation. The rhyme helped the memory to retain them, and while wood, bamboo, and silk were all consumed by the flames of Tséin, when the time of repression ceased scholars would be eager to rehearse their stores. It was inevitable that the same sounds, when taken down by different writers, should in many cases be represented by different characters. Accepting the text as it exists, we have no reason to doubt that it is a near approximation to that which was current in the time of Confucius.
the integrity of
all taken down at first from re