Tang2 kao1 tsu3
T'ang high ancestor
The first Emperor of the T'ang dynasty
T'ang see line 183. [This dynasty flourished A.D. 618 — 907, and formed a brilliant epoch in Chinese history.]
Kao see line 89.
Tsu see line 89. [The founder's name was 李淵 Li Yuan.]
Chi3 i4 shih1
Raise duty soldier
raised volunteer troops.
Ch'i is composed of 走 tsou to walk as radical, and 已 i finished as phonetic. It also means to rise, to begin, etc.
I see lines 14, 69. [Eitel here translates "by raising loyal armies" — loyal, that is, to a rebel, which in Chinese is a contradiction in terms. The word here rendered by volunteer has already been explained under line 14. Similarly, 義學 i hsueh is a free school, 義山 I shan a free burying-ground, i.e. schools and cemeteries provided for the public from a sense of duty, and so on. Pere Zottoli's translation "eduxit legitimum exercitum" seems to be equally reprehensible.]
Shih see line 20.
Ch'u2 sui2 luan4
Remove sui confusion
He put an end to the disorder of the House of Sui,
Ch'u is composed of 刀 tao knife as phonetic, with 倉 (line 228) as radical. It originally meant the steps to a hall, and then to take away, to subtract, as in modern Chinese.
Sui see line 235.
Luan is composed of 乙 i a cyclical character, said to have once meant to govern, as radical, with a phonetic which also meant to govern. It seems to have originally signified to put confusion in order, but now means sedition, rebellion, etc.
Ch'uang4 kuo2 chi1
Establish nation foundations
and established the foundations of his line.
Ch'uang is now composed of 刀 tao knife as radical, with 倉 ts'ang a granary as phonetic. It appears to have been a form of 刅; (line 228) and meant to wound, to cut into, in which sense it is read ch l ua?ig s . The later reading ch'uang4 to begin, to lay the foundations of, etc., has probably been developed from the idea of cutting into.
Kuo see line 155. [Eitel deals with this line in evident ignorance of the fact that kuo is often used in the sense of family, line; e.g. 無子國除 wu tzu kuo ch'u having no son his house came to an end. He translates by "And created the modern Chinese empire's foundation." Pere Zottoli too errs, but not so glaringly, with "jecit regni fundamenta."]
Chi is composed of 其 (line 169) as phonetic, with 土 t'u earth as radical, and means the beginning of a wall.
Erh4 shih2 ch'uan2
Two ten transmit
Twenty times the throne was transmitted
Erh see title.
Shih see line 45.
Ch'uan see line 163. [That is, there were twenty-one Emperors, the Empress who usurped the throne between A.D. 684 — 705 being excluded.]
San1 pai3 tsai3
Three hundred year
in a period of three hundred years.
San see title.
Pai see line 46.
Tsai see line 193. [The T'ang dynasty lasted from A.D. 618 to 907.]
Liang2 mieh4 chih1
Liang extinguish it
The Liang State destroyed it,
Liang see line 228. [It here stands for the name of a State, the Prince of which, by name 朱溫 Chu Wen, assassinated the last Emperor of the T'ang dynasty, and placed himself upon the throne, A.D. 907. Eitel wrongly regards Liang as the name of the dynasty mentioned in line 247, thus, "Cheu Wen, the founder of the Heu Liang dynasty, destroyed it."]
Mieh is composed of a phonetic which originally meant to destroy by fire, the word 火 huo fire being present in it, and the radical 水 shui water, which seems to have been added to express the extinction of fire.
Chih see line 1.
Kuo2 nai3 kai3
Nation then change
and the dynastic title was changed.
Kuo see lines 155, 242.
Nai see line 6.
Kai is composed of 攴 p'u3 to rap, and 己 chi self, and is explained as to rap or remind oneself of one's faults, q.d. to change, to reform. [The name of the new dynasty was Liang, so called after the State of the founder, as above. Eitel has a serious mistake in "and the Empire thereby underwent a change." Pere Zottoli too has regnumque tunc immutatum est," which puts the student equally off the track.]
Liang2 t'ang2 chin4
Liang t'ang chin
The Liang, the T'ang, the Chin,
Liang see line 228. A.D. 907—923.
T'ang see line 183. A.D. 923-936.
Chin see line 226. A.D. 937—947.
Chi2 han4 chou1
Reach han chou
the Han, and the Chou,
Chi is composed of 又 yu a hand (see line 18) as radical, and 人 jen man, i.e. holding on to the man ahead. Its meaning here is simply and.
Han see line 214. A.D. 947-951.
Chou see line 141. A.D. 951—960. [All the above are distinguished from earlier dynasties of the same name by the prefix of 後 hou = Later.]
Ch'eng1 wu3 tai4
Entitle five dynasty
are called the Five Dynasties,
Ch'eng see line 186.
Wu see line 15.
Tai is composed of 人 jen man as radical, and 弋 i a stake, to shoot with bow and arrow. It means to exchange, in place of, dynasty, etc., and must be carefully distinguished from 伐 fa (line 195). and there was a reason for the establishment of each.
Chieh1 yu3 yu2
All have cause
and there was a reason for the establishment of each.
Chieh is composed of 白 pai white as radical, and 比 pi to compare.
Yu see line 14.
Yu is not given in the Shuo Wen dictionary. It means cause, source, because, from, by, etc. [Eitel quite misses the point of this line and translates by "All of them having their origin one in the other." It has been suggested to me that this line may mean that these Five Dynasties were all named in reference to earlier dynasties mentioned in lines 228, 239, 226, 216, and 199. The commentary however of Ho Hsing-ssu gives 五代皆有所來者也, which puts the question beyond doubt.]
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