Ts'ai4 wên2 chi1
Ts'ai wên chi
Ts'ai is composed of 艸 ts'ao vegetation as radical, and 祭 chi4 to sacrifice. It is a common surname.
Wen see line 44.
Chi is composed of 女 nü woman as radical and an obsolete character which must not be confounded with 臣 ch'ên (line 54). It was the name of a river where the Yellow Emperor (line 180) was born, and was adopted by him as his surname. [Wen-chi is the personal name of 蔡琰 Ts'ai Yen, daughter of a famous states- man, 2nd and 3rd cent. A.D.]
Neng1 pien4 ch'in2
Able judge lute
was able to judge from the sound of a lute.
Neng see line 34.
Pien is composed of two 辛 hsin acrid, which formed an old radical read pien, meaning two guilty persons incriminating one another, with a dot and a line between, and originally meant to decide, hence to discriminate.
Ch'in is composed of two 玉 yu jade, with the dots left out, as radical, and 今 chin present, now, as phonetic! At first the ch'in had only five strings, afterwards seven. [This young lady, who was a skilled musician, was listening to her father playing, when a cat in the room caught a mouse. Instantly she detected a timbre of slaughter in the tones of the instrument, and foretold disaster to her father, which shortly came to pass. Eitel misses the point with "Who was able to distinguish the tone. of each string on the lute."]
Hsieh4 tao4 yün4
Hsieh tao yün
Hsieh is composed of 言 yen words as radical and 射 she to shoot with a bow as phonetic. It means to thank, etc., but is here a surname.
Tao see line 7.
Yun is composed of 韋 wei hides, leather, as radical, and a common phonetic of yün or wen value. [Hsieh Tao-yiin was the niece of a famous statesman of the 4th cent. A.D., and a clever poetess.]
Neng2 yung2 yin2
Able hum croon
was able to compose verses.
Neng see line 34.
Yung see line 308.
Yin is composed of 口 k'ou mouth as radical and 今 chin present, now, as phonetic. [Yung yin, like yung shih in line 308, comes to mean "compose poetry" from the habit which Chinese students have of humming over their efforts at verse in a sing-song voice during the process of composition. Eitel is again in error with "Was able to recite poetry and make rhymes" which differs from his rendering of line 308 only in the transposition of words.]
Pi3 nü3 tzu3
They girl child
They were only girls,
Pi see line 273.
Nu under its old form was supposed to be the picture of a woman.
Tzu see line 11. [Eitel translates "Now these, though females and children" which gives quite a false idea of the syntax of the line. See line 321.]
Ch'ieh3 ts'ung1 min3
Yet clever sharp
yet they were quick and clever.
Ch'ieh see line 274.
Ts'ung is composed of 耳 erh ear as radical, and a common phonetic composed of 心 hsin heart or mind below a picture of a window and signifying fluttered, hurried.
Min is composed of 攴 p'u to tap as radical and 每 mei which originally meant luxuriant vegetation and now means each, every.
Erh3 nan2 tzu3
You male child
Erh see line 297.
Nan is composed of 田 t'ien fields as radical and li strength; q.d. he who uses strength in the fields, a man.
Tzu see line 11. [This line has obvious reference to line 319, and the 子 tzu has the same value in each.]
Tang1 tzu4 ching3
Ought self warn
ought to rouse yourselves.
Tang see line 36.
Tzti see line 93.
Ching is composed of 言 yen words as radical, with 敬 ching to respect as phonetic. It is also written 儆 . [Eitel translates these lines by "How much more then ye, male children, ought ye, whilst young, to accomplish." No such words as "young" or "accomplish" are found in any good edition.]
San Tzu Ching >