Hsi1 chung4 ni2
Formerly chung ni
Of old, Confucius
Hsi see line 9.
Chung is composed of 人 jen man as radical and 中 chung middle (line 64). It means the second in order of birth, but is here joined with ni as the style or literary name of Confucius. Ni is composed of 尸 shih corpse as radical, and 匕 pi 3 an obsolete word meaning spoon, as phonetic. It was the name of a hill at which the mother of Confucius prayed before her son was born.
Shih1 hsiang4 t'o1
Teacher hsiang t'o
took Hsiang T'o for his teacher.
Shih see line 20.
Hsiang is composed of 頁 yeh head as radical, and 工 kung labour as phonetic. It means the back of the head, sort, kind, a sum of money, but is here the surname of a precocious lad who is said to have been qualified at the age of seven to be the instructor of Confucius.
T'o means a sack, but is here the personal name of Hsiang as above. It is commonly written 橐 . [Eitel has "took for his model a young scholar called Hiang T'o," and even Pere Zottoli has "imitabatur Hiang t'ouo," though in his note he has "septennis jam docebat Confucium."]
Ku3 sheng4 hsien2
Ancient holy wise
The inspired men and sages of old
Ku see line 261.
Sheng see line 153.
Hsien is composed of 貝 pei pearl-oyster as radical, and an obsolete word as phonetic. It means much talent, and is applied to sages on a lower level than the sheng, that is, to men who are wise but not actually inspired. Thus the 經 ching (see title) canonical books are regarded as the work of sheng holy men, whereas the 傳 chuan (line 163) were the work of hsien wise men.
Shang4 ch'in2 hsüeh2
Notwithstanding diligent study
studied diligently nevertheless.
Shang is composed of 八 pa (see line 88) and 向 hsiang towards, as phonetic, and means to add, to esteem, to some extent, still, etc. It is now classed under radical 小 hsiao small.
Ch'in is composed of 力 li strength and a common phonetic.
Hsueh see line 11. [The idea to be conveyed is that if even the wisest men of old studied to improve themselves, much more should young people strive to do so.]
Chao4 chung1 ling4
Chao middle worthy
Chao, President of the Council
Chao is composed of 走 tsou to walk as radical, with 肖 hsiao like as phonetic. It means to hasten towards, but is here a surname standing for 趙普 Chao P'u, A.D. 916 — 992, a famous statesman who aided in founding the Sung dynasty (line 251).
Chung see line 64. Here part of a title.
Ling is composed of an old word meaning to bring together (line
261), and |] (obsolete) meaning an officer's seal or tally, one
half of which was kept by the sovereign for purposes of verification.
It now means a command, honourable, etc., and is classed under
radical J^ jen man. See also line 145.
studied the Lu text of the Lun Yü
Tu1 lu2 lun2
Read lu discourse
Tu see line 110.
Lu was originally composed of a contraction of 自 (line 93) as radical, with a contraction of an obsolete character meaning pickled fish as phonetic, and meant stupid talk, dull, obtuse. It was the name of the State in which Confucius was born, and so came to be used in the exactly opposite sense of intellectual cultivation. It is not however in that sense, as Eitel and Zottoli wrongly suppose ("kept reading the Lu State's Discourses" and "studebat regni Lou sententiis"), that the word is here applied to Lun. By it is meant that particular copy of the Lun Yil (line 115) which was recovered under the Han dynasty from the Lu State and became finally the standard text, as distinguished from the 齊 Ch'i copy, recovered from the State of that name.
Lun see line 115. Here elliptical.
Pi3 chi4 shih4
He already official
He, when already an official,
Pi is composed of 彳 a step with the left foot (line 67) as radical, and 皮 p'i skin as phonetic. It means that, objective, as opposed to 此 tz'u this, subjective.
Chi see line 159.
Shih is composed of 人 jen man as radical, and 士 shih (which originally meant affairs, because all affairs begin with — i one and end with 十 shih ten) soldier, scholar, as phonetic. It is used in the sense of to hold office.
Hsueh1 chieh3 ch'in2
Learn moreover diligent
studied, and moreover with diligence.
Hsüeh see line 11.
Ch'ieh is composed of 几 chi a stool standing upon — i one, which here does duty for the ground, with two horizontal lines. It originally meant to set forth as a sacrifice.
Ch'in see line 270.
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