THE THREE-FOLD SAN-TSZE-KING
OR THE TRILITERAL CLASSIC OF CHINA,
I. BY WANG-PO-KEOU,
II. BY PROTESTANT MISSIONARIES IN THAT COUNTRY;
AND III. BY THE REBEL-CHIEF, TAE-PING-WANG.
THE REV. S. C. MALAN, M.A.,
OF BALLIOL COLLEGE, OXFORD, AND VICAR OF BROADWINDSOR, DORSET.
LONDON : DAVID NUTT, 270, STRAND. 1856.
I have chosen rather to preserve as much as possible the Chinese style by rendering the text verbally at the expense of English idiom. I have done little more than what almost any one might have done, who has elementary notions of Chinese Grammar, and knows how to use a Chinese Dictionary -- thinking that in this case Chinese-English might even prove more appropriate than a style perhaps more idiomatic but less likely to represent Chinese ideas.
The order and the number of Chinese words in every line have, for the most part, been retained, with the addition only of such words as were necessary to make sense and which are printed in italics. The following, therefore, is not so much a translation, by which is understood a faithful rendering of one idiom into another -- as a rough version open to much criticism, but yet I would hope, such as to convey a tolerably correct notion of the remarkable language in which the original is written.
I have also added a few notes for the better understanding of the Chinese text, which is often very concise, and even obscure.
1 Men at their beginning
are by nature originally good.^
2 By nature they are mutually alike,
but by practice they mutually differ.
3 If a child be not taught
his nature becomes deteriorated ;
4 but in the way of education
the principal-thing is undivided attention.
5 Of-old Meng's mother ^
chose a neighbourhood in which to reside ;
^ This refers to a man's birth. Chinese philosophers, however, teach that man's nature is in itself good.
^ The celebrated philosopher, Meng, Meng-tsze, or Mencius, lived B.C. about 350. He was a native of Chow, and a disciple of Confucius. He received his early education from his mother,who, they say, formed his character even before he was born. She went afterwards to reside in the neighbourhood of a school for his benefit. But as he was idle, she cut off a piece of her web, to shew him practically that if he did not study, he could no more achieve his purpose than she could continue to weave after having cut asunder the web. This mode of teaching had the desired effect ; and Meng-tsze became the author of a very celebrated work that bears his name.
6 as her son would not study,
she cut off her web.
7 Taou^ of In-shan
had good regulations ;
8 he taught his five sons^
and the name of all of them became exalted.
9 To nourish a son and not to educate him,
is the father's fault.
10 To teach without strictness,
is the teacher's negligence.
11 And for children not to study,
is not what is proper.
12 For if young you do not study,
when old how will you be ?
13 gem un-wrought
is an un-finished article ;
14 and a man who is not educated
does not know what is right.
^ Taou was a celebrated teacher, renowned for the rigidity of his school-discipline. His five sons, all taught by him, became distinguished men.
15 While you are children
then at that early time,
16 be affectioned towards your teachers and friends
and practise propriety and right.
1 7 Heung when nine years of age
was able to warm his father's bed ;
18 for filial-duty towards parents
is what ought to be borne-in-mind.
19 Yung when four years old
could give-up his pears ;
20 for the duty-of-younger-brothers towards their elders,
ought early to be known.
21 The very-first-thing is filial and brotherly-duty ;
next comes to see and to hear ;
22 to know the science of numbers,
and to bear-in-mind that of names of objects.
23 Units and tens,
tens and hundreds ;
24 hundred and thousands
thousands and ten-thousands.
25 The three powerful things are :
heaven, the earth, and man.
26 The three luminaries are :
the sun, the moon, and the stars.
^ Yung was the youngest of his family. One day a basket of pears being offered to his brothers and to himself, he chose the smallest, saying, “I am the youngest, and therefore I ought to have the smallest pear.”
27 The three civilities are :
The relationship between a prince and his subject is justice.
28 The bond between father and son is parental affection,
between husband and wife deference.
29 As to spring and summer, as to autumn and winter,
30 these four seasons,
revolve without intermission.
31 As to south and north, as to west and east,
32 these four quarters tend to one centre.
33 As to water and fire, wood, metal, and earth,
34 these five elements
are at the root of all visible-objects.
35 As to benevolence and justice, propriety, wisdom and faithfulness,
36 these five constant virtues will not bear to be disturbed.
37 Rice, millet and pulse, wheat, panicum and rye ;
38 these six kinds of grain, are what men eat.
39 Horses, cows, and sheep, birds, dogs, and pigs ;
40 these six domestic-animals are those men rear.
41 As to joy and anger,
as to sorrow and pleasure^
42 love, hatred, and desire, they are seven passions.
43 Gourds, earth and skins, wood, stone and metal,
44 with silk and bamboo,
are eight substances that produce sound.^
45 Great-grand-father' s-father, great-grand-father
and grand-father father and one-self;
46 One-self and son, son and grand- son ;
47 Of son grand-son,
as-far-as great-grand-son's son,
48 are nine degrees of kindred, of men's relations.
49 Father and son, -- affection ; Husband and wife, -- agreement.
50 Elder-brother, -- pattern of love. Younger-brother, -- pattern of respect :
5 1 Prince, -- pattern of honour : Subject, -- pattern of loyalty.
52 These are ten duties that bind all men.
53 Whosoever teaches dull-boys must explain fully,
^ Substances that are used in making musical instruments.
54 state clearly the reasons and principles, plainly-marking the periods in reading.
55 Those who study must have a beginning ;
56 go-throngh the Hiao-king^ on-to the Four-books
57 As regards the Lun-hwa,
they are in twelve chapters, written
by the company of Confucius' disciples
who recorded his good sayings.
59 As-to Meng-tsze,
he consists-of seven chapters ;
60 he explains reason and virtue,
and discourses-on benevolence and justice.
61 The author of the Chung-yung,
6 Bridgman and Klaproth give "Sia-hio" instead of " Hiao king." The Sia-hio, or ' Little-study," was compiled about 700 years ago by Cuu-fu-tsze. It is an elementary work that treats on the common duties of life, and forms a class-book for children. The " Hiao-king." treats of filial duty. It consists of dialogues between Confucius and Tsang, and is very highly and deservedly esteemed in China.
7 The " four-books " which enjoy the highest classical authority in China are, the '' Ta-hio," or great study ; the " Chung-yung," or invariable middle; the " Lun-yu," or " Lun-hwa;" all of Confucius ; and " Meng-tsze," written by this philosopher.
8 The "Lun-hwa" is a collection of dialogues between Confucius and his disciples. They resemble in some degree the dialogues of Plato ; but they are very inferior to them.
9 K'UNG-KHEIH was the grandson of Confucius. His epithet,
62 " Middle" (chung) does-not incline either way,
"invariable "(Yung) does-not alter.
63 The author of the Ta-Hio ^
64 From the government-of-self and of a family,
he proceeds-to the even rule-of-a-state.
65 The Hiao-king once gone through,
and the Four-books well-understood,
66 then the Six classics
the student may begin to read.
67 The Odes,^the Records,^ the Changes,^ the Ritual,^ Summer and Autumn,^
^given by Bridgman, was Tsze-sze. He compiled the Chung-yung. See also Dr. Morrison's Dictionary.
^ art. Kheih, and A. Remusat's Tchoung-young, p. 2, sqq.).
^The Ta-Hio " consists of one chapter written by Confucius himself, with a commentary upon it by Tsang-Tsze, one of the disciples of Confucius.
^ The " Odes," or She-king, is a collection of ancient poetry written at different times, and divided into four parts : I. Kwo- fung ; II. Siao-ya ; III. Ta-ya ; IV. Song. It occupies in China the place of the Rig-veda in India.
^ The "Records," or Shoo-king, was compiled by Confucius It begins with the reign of Yaou, b.c. 2356, and ends with the annals of the Chow dynasty, c. b.c. 700.
^The " Book of Changes," or Yi-king, is the oldest book in China. It treats of general philosophy, and is supposed to have been taught by Foo-he.
^The "Ritual," or Le-ke, was compiled by the two brothers Tai (see below, ver. 76).
^ The "Spring and Autumn," or Tsun-tsieu, was written by Confucius. It is an historical account of his own times, and forms a single work. But as the Ritual was divided into two parts, the above works are called either the " five classics," or the " Woo-king," five classics; and the Hiao-king is sometimes reckoned among them by those who view the Ritual as a single work. Those " six classics " and the " four-books " are the indispensable ground-work of all education in China. The F. Noel therefore made a mistake in giving, in 1711, a translation of the "four-books " with the " Siao-hio " and " Hiao-king," as of the Sinensis imperii libri classici sex. This title belongs only to the six classics mentioned above.
68 called the Six classics^
must he examined and completely-mastered.
69 There-is Leen-shan,^ there-is also Kwai-Chang^
70 there-is the Chau-yi,^
three works on changes, complete.^^
71 There-are the government-canons and precepts, there-are also the instructions and orders ;
72 there-are vows and commands,^
contained in the Shoo-king.
73 Our Lord Ki
wrote the Chau-ritual.^
74 He published the six Canons
to maintain the internal government.
^ Or, " connected hills," a treatise written by FU-khi.
^ Written by the emperor Shan-nung.
^ Written by the celebrated king Wen-wang.
^ That is, " complete the Yi-king," or "book of changes."
20 Six different kinds of state-papers contained in the Shoo- king.
21 He was the son of king Wen, brother of Woo-wang, first king of the Chow dynasty, b.c. 1123. Ki was the family name of those kings.
75 The older and younger Tai,
compiled the Le-ke ;
76 they transmitted the holy sayings
and completed the Ritual and Music.^
77 As to national airs,^
and ancient-poetry and praises^
78 called the four Odes,
they are worthy to be rehearsed and sung.
79 The Odes being discontinued,^
" Spring and Autumn " were composed, 26
80 which by awarding praise and blame^
distinguish the good from the bad.
81 With-regard to the three commentaries,
they are, one by Kung-yang,
82 one by the Tso family,
and one by Kuh-leaxg.
^ " Le " and " Yo." But the " yo," or " music," having been lost, the "le,'' or " rites," now forms the whole of the Le-ke.
23 They form the first part of the She-king, or Book of Odes.
24 The " Siao-ya," " Ta-ya," and " Song."
25 Dr. Morrison renders it: ""When the Ya Ode was lost it was supplied by Confucius." But this is a paraphrase of the original. The odes being discontinued, Confucius, in order to supply their place commenced his historical work, " Spring and Autumn," which extends over 242 years. He compiled them from the records of his native country, the modern Shan-tung (see Bridgman, Chinese Chrest., 1. c). They are called "spring and autumn" annals; "spring" being the praise, and "autumn" representing the blasts of censure they contain.
^ viz., on the " Spring and Autumn " annals.
83 The classics once clearly understood
then read the works of philosophers.
84 The best of them chose,
and bear in mind their deeds.
85 The five philosophical works,
are Seun and Yang;
86 the sage Wen-chung, and Laou and Chong.
87 The classic philosophers once gone-through read all historians.
88 Ancient generations-of-men in-succession make-known the end and the beginning of States.
89 From E and Nung to Hwang-te,^
27 These are five of the " ten authors," or philosophical works of high authority among the Chinese ; and second only to their " king," or " classics," and to the " four books."
28 E or Fuh-E, Nung or Shin-nung, and Hwang-Te, are the three first in the list of " five emperors," or second era in the mythological period of Chinese history. The first era of that period, or the " three emperors," begins with Pwan-koo, in whose time animals spoke, and men and women went about clad in vine- leaves. FuH-E, the first of the " five emperors," is considered as the founder of the Chinese empire. His capital was Hwa-seu in Shen-se. In his days men differed little from animals, the blood of which they drank. But Fuh-e taught them to give up that custom, and made them adopt the first notions of civilized life.
Shen-Nung, or " the divine husbandman," succeeded Fuh-e. He taught his subjects to cultivate the ground ; and invented the art of healing. He was succeeded by Heen-yuen, who took the title of Hwang-TE, or " Yellow Emperor," on his accession to the throne. He built himself a palace of bricks, and multiplied the number of written symbols, which he originally copied from the back of an insect. He began to build cities and villages, and even established an observatory in his capital. The dates of this fabulous or legendary period are, of course, uncertain.
90 is-called the period of the Three Kings who reigned in remote antiquity.
91 T'HANG and YU^
are called the Two Emperors.
92 They were both kind and considerate,
and became a term For "perfect government.''
93 There was Yu of the Hea dynasty, ^
29 Thang and Yu are the same as Yaou and Shun ; the former being their " kwo," or " neen-haou," " reigning title ;" the latter their real name.
Yaou began to reign b.c. 2356 ; and Shun b.c. 2169. They are the two most celebrated emperors in Chinese annals ; partly on account of the deluge that took place in China in Yaou's time ; and partly on account of the wisdom of their institutions and the glory of their reign. The canon of Yaou and the canon of Shun form the first two chapters of the Shoo-king ; and the deeds of those two emperors are told at length in the first book of that classic (see Dr. W. Medhurst's Shoo-king, pp. 1 -- 81 ; Dr. Gutzlaff's Chinese History, pp. 124, sqq. ; Dr. Morrison's View of China, p. 56, etc.)
^ Yu was the founder of the Hea dynasty, b.c. 2205. He was 100 years old when he repaired the damages done by the deluge, and divided the land into nine regions (an account of him is given in Shoo-king, book ii., sect. i.). He is said to have been about ten feet high, and to have forbidden the use of wine, from his having suffered himself in consequence of too much drinking. Chinese historians tell us that in his time it " rained gold for three days."
and Tang^ of the Shangj
94 and Wen and Woo^ of the Chow, who are called the Three Kings.
95 Hea transmitted-to his son his estate the empire,,
96 for four hundred years, when Hea's lineage stopped. ^
97 Then Tang put an end to Hea, and called the reigning-family Shang,
98 which lasted six hundred years until the death of Chow.
99 Woo-WANG of the Chow dynasty began by putting-to-death Chow.
^ Tang was the first of the Shang dynasty, b.c. 1766. He was a pious king, and "worshipped Shang-Te to the uttermost ." (Shoo- king, book iii., sect. i.).
32 Wen was father of Woo. Wen never reigned, but his name is associated with the name of his son Woo, the founder of the Chow dynasty, b.c. 1122, and famous for his valour. Wen-wang was prime minister of the emperor Te-yih (b.c. 1191), and celebrated in the Book of Odes for his wisdom and his virtue. Chow-Hin, an infamous emperor who succeeded Te-yih (b.c. 1154), cast Wen-wang into prison because he remonstrated with him for his atrocities. Woo-wang seeing the sufferings of his father, took possession of the empire (b.c. 1122), and reigned prosperously (Shoo-king, book iv., sect, i., sqq.).
33 In Chinese, " Hea's tutelary deity deteriorated," his fortune became adverse to his line.
34 That is, to the Hea dynasty ; and established the Shang dynasty, b.c. 1766. He was a descendant of Hwang-Te ; and at the solicitations of E-yin and of the people who had become incensed at the profligacy of Kee, the last emperor of the Hea family, he conquered him in battle. But Tang let him escape with his life ; and Kee died in exile, B.C. 1766.
100 This dynasty lasted eight hundred years : a very long duration.
101 The Chow dynasty ended in Tung,^
who reigned with regularity and good order.
102 His people were valiant with shield and spear,
and fond-of commercial intercourse.
103 From the beginning of " Tsun-tsien,^
to the end of the " Chen-kwo,"^
104 five usurped the kingdom by force,
and seven "Hiung"^ came forth.
105 The Ying-Tsin family,
* Tung-Chow- Keun, being the last emperor of that line. He was a brother of Kaou-wang, and possessed a small district in the province of Ho-nan. He was very courageous, but had nevertheless to submit to the emperor of Tsin, Chaou-seang, who founded the dynasty of Tsin, b.c. 249. " Tung " may also be taken in its meaning of " east," as Dr. Morrison does, who renders this line, " When this family fell, the court was removed to the eastern part of the empire." The Chinese gradually shrunk towards the " middle " of the empire ; from whence " Chung-kwo," or " middle kingdom," became a term for " China ;" while the " eastern foreigners," as they called the race of Tsin, were numerous and strong (Dr. Morrison's View of China, p. 52, etc.).
* This is the period of the " spring and autumn " annals, written by Confucius.
^ Chen-kwo, or " fighting nations," is the name given to the latter end of the Chow dynasty, on account of the numerous battles fought by princes contending for the government of the empire,
^ Seven " martial " nations, over six of which Tsin prevailed.
then fought with them,
106 and left-the-throne to Urh-she,^
who fought-with Tsoo and Han.
107 Then Kaou-tsoo arose^
and the race of Han was established.^
108 until the filial and peaceful Ping,^
when Wang-mang usurped the throne.
109 Then Kwang-woo arose,^
and became the eastern Han.
110 After four hundred years it ended in Heen.^
39 B.C. 209.
^ Kaou-tsoo was the first emperor of the Han dynasty. He restored order to the kingdom that had long been disturbed, B.C. 202.
^^ The grandson of Yuen-Te was proclaimed emperor a.d. 1, under the remarkable epithet of Ping-Te, " prince" or "ruler of peace." As he was very young, one of his nobles, Wang-mang, became regent, and ultimately took in hand the reins of government and kept them. But he was beaten in battle by Lew-shung and Lew-sew, two scions of the Han family, and his head was cut off by a soldier and exposed to the people. The throne was then occupied by Lew-shun.
^ Lew-sew succeeded Lew-shun, and took the name of Kwang-woo, A.D. 25. His first act was to declare a general amnesty; and he died after a glorious reign, a.d. 58. His son, Ming-te, had a dream which reminded him of the words of Confucius, " The holy man is in the west." He sent to Teen-chu, or Hindoostan, for Ho-shano, a Buddhist priest, who brought with him Buddhistic books in Pali, and introduced Buddhism into China, a.d. 65.
^ Heen-te, a weak prince, ascended the throne, a.d. 190. He resigned the empire to Tsaou-pe, son of Tsaou-tsaou. But Lew-PEI, of the Han family, assumed the imperial dignity under the name of Chaou-le-hwang-te, and founded the How-han dynasty, which only lasted from a.d. 221 to 263. The foregoing emperors of the Han line are divided by Chinese historians into Se-han and Tung-han, western and eastern Han. Eastern Han began with Kwang-woo (see Dr. Gutzlaff's History of China, 1. c).
It was during the Han dynasty that printing from wooden blocks was invented. It was also during the reign of Hwan-te (a.d. 147) that the first foreigners from Ta-tsin (Arabia) and from Teen-chuh (India) came to China and traded at Canton.
111 Wei, Shuh, Woo contended-for the empire of Han ;^
112 they were called the Three-kingdoms, and continued till the two Tsin.^
^^ The " three states " (San-kwo) were : I. The How-Han, or Shuh, was governed by the Han family, which is alone acknowledged to confer the imperial dignity. II. The Wei state, founded by Tsaou-TSaou, comprised the greater part of northern China. III. Woo comprised the southern provinces. It was founded by Sun-keen. His son Ta-te declared himself emperor, and kept his court at Nan-king.
How-TE, the last emperor of the How-Han dynasty, being pressed on all sides by Wei, surrendered to him. His son Lew-chin tried to prevent him from so doing. But as he failed, he put an end to his life. Thus ended the celebrated Han dynasty, during which flourished the greatest men China ever produced. " Haou-han," or " good-han," means in Chinese " a good man ;" and " Han-jin," or " men of Han," is a title of which the Chinese are still proud (see Dr. Gutzlaff's History of China, 1. c).
^ Sze-ma-yen, a prince of Tsin, forced Wei to abdicate the throne, a.d. 265. The two Tsin were the Tsin dynasty founded in A.D. 264 ; and the " Eastern Tsin,'' founded by Yuen-Te, a.d. 317.
113 Then Sung,^ and Tse succeeded,^
and next-to-them Leang^ and Chin.^
114 Then was the court in the south, and the capital Kin-ling. ^^
115 In the north reigned Yuen and Wei, divided east and west.
116 Yu-WEN of the Chow dynasty, with Kao of the Tse,
117 continued till the dynasty Suy,^ when the whole became one land.
118 was not again transmitted, but lost in the line of succession.
119 Kaou-tsoo of Tang,^ called-forth righteous ministers,
120 expelled the house of Suy, that was disturbed ;
and laid the foundation of a new kingdom.
121 For twenty generations it passed through three hundred years.
122 Then Leang^ put-down that dynasty
^ The Sung dynasty was founded by Kaou-tsoo, a.d, 420.
^ The Tse dynasty began a.d. 479.
^ The LEANG dynasty, a.d. 502.
^ The Chin dynasty, a.d. 557.
^ Or, Nan-king.
^ Founded a.d. 589.
^2 The Tang dynasty was founded by Kaou-tsoo, a.d. 618.
^ The Leang or How-Leang dynasty began a.d. 907 ; How-Tang, A.D. 924; How-Tsin, a.d. 936; How-Han, a.d. 947; and the Chow dynasty, a.d. 951. Those five dynasties are called " Woo-tai," the five generations or ages of very short duration. The expression in the original rendered by " had destinies of their own," is not clear. It may refer to the short period of existence of those five dynasties.
and the kingdom was changed.
123 Leang, Tang, Tsin, Han and Chow,^
124 are called the five generations which had destinies of-their-own.
125 Then the illustrious Sung^ arose,
who undertook the government left vacant by Chow.
126 It went-through eighteen generations
and then the south and north empires were united.
127 There are seventeen historians, complete records of all those annals,
128 of years of rule and of rebellion ; from whence we know their rise and fall.
129 Those-who read historians
who examined and truly recorded,
130 discern past and present events as-if seen with their own eyes.
131 Have them in your mouth and recite them, in your heart and ponder-over them ;
132 in the morning be at it,
in the evening also be at it.
133 Of old Chuxg-ni^ called
^ The Sung dynasty was founded a.d. 960 by Tae-tsoo. It continued till a.d. 1120, when Kaou-tsung began the Southern Sung dynasty, which lasted till a.d. 1278.
^ A name of Confucius. Dr. Morrison renders this line thus : " Chung-ni once called a boy of ten years of age his instructor." The original, which means 'a sack,' may perhaps apply, like " muff," or " foolscap," to a stupid boy.
“ teacher” a great sack.
134 For in olden-times sages and honourable men were fond-of diligent study.
135 Chow when Chung-ling, read Sun-yu.
136 Even-while filling that-office he studied, and diligently too ;
137 he turned over his reed-books, his engraved bamboo-tablets.
138 They were not "books"
yet they urged him on to knowledge.
139 One man^ suspended his head to a beam; another^ pricked his thigh with an awl ;
140 those men, though not taught,
of themselves were diligent and pains-taking.
141 Like him^ who read by a fire-fly in a bag ; and like him^ who did so by the glare of snow.
142 Though their families were poor, they did not desist-from study.
143 Like him^ who carried sticks on-his-back ;
like him^ too who hung his book on the horn of a cow.
144 Though they were weary- with-toil, they still took-pains to study.
^ A high officer of state.
^ Said to be Sun-king.
when seven- and- twenty,
146 began-to take to study and aroused himself ; to read books and tablets-of-bamboo.
147 Though he was old
he nevertheless repented of his delay.
148 But you young children, ought early to consider ;
149 as did Leang-hao
when eighty-two years old.
150 He was-heard in the High-court
and became the head of the great literates.
151 In the evening of life he accomplished his desires, and all spoke of that wonder.
152 You little children
ought-to determine-on studying- with-all-your- heart.
153 Yung when eight years old could recite the Odes.
154 Pe when seven years of age, could play at chess.
155 Those sharp and intelligent boys people called " wonderful."^
156 You who begin to study ought-to imitate them.
could play on the lute.
could sing well.
159 Those little girls
were quick and intelligent.
160 You little boys
ought when young to perfect yourselves.
161 The Emperor raised Shin-tung to act as Ching-tsi.
162 He, though young,
was already a public officer.
163 You who begin to study, make-an-effort and you will attain.
164; Whosoever does so
let him be like those persons.
165 A dog watches at night, a cock crows at dawn ;
166 but if a child do not learn how can he become a man ?
167 The silk-worm produces silk, and the bee yields honey :
168 but a man who does not study is not even like those creatures.
169 If when young you learn, and in manhood also act ;
170 above you, you will have-access-to the prince, below you, you will confer blessings-on poor people;
171 moreover your name will be renowned, your father and mother will be illustrious ;
1 72 you will shed lustre on your predecessors, and raise-in-honour your posterity.
173 Some men leave to their children
gold and abundant wealth.
174 but I teach children and leave them one book.
175 Diligence has merit
but there is no profit in play.
176 I warn you of it then !
By-all-means make-every-effort in your power.
THE END OF THE SAN-TSZE-KING, BY WANG-PO-KEOU.
San Tzu Ching >