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117 results
Imperial Calendar in the Third Year of Emperor Jia Jing’s Reign in the Ming Dynasty
The Da Ming Jiajing san nian datong li (Imperial calendar, or great universal system of calculating astronomy) is based upon the system of calendrical astronomy developed by the astronomer Guo Shoujin during the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368). It was officially adapted by the Ming Bureau of Astronomy in 1384. It specified the phases of the moon and contained predictions of when lunar and solar eclipses would occur. The great Chinese navigator Zheng He used Guo Shoujing's methods to determine latitude and longitude on his voyages to the Pacific and Indian ...
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Chronicle of Foreign Lands
The Zhifang waiji (Chronicle of foreign lands) is a concise geography of the world, the first of its kind written in Chinese. The Italian Jesuit missionary Matteo Ricci produced a map of the world in Chinese in 1584. The map, which followed Western principles of cartography then unknown in China, underwent several revisions between 1584 and 1602. Ricci’s fellow priests Diego de Pantoja and Sabatino de Ursis were instructed by imperial order to compose a book explaining the map. Pantoja died in 1618 and the work eventually was completed ...
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Illustrated Guide of Tilling and Weaving: Rural Life in China
This book is comprised of 23 illustrations of tilling and 23 illustrations of weaving, each of which is accompanied by a poem. According to the "Preface to the imperially commissioned illustrations of tilling and weaving" and the formal memorandum of presentation by Yan Yudun, the poems were inscribed by the Kangxi Emperor. The painter, Jiao Bingzhen, for the most part draws on the “Tilling and Weaving Illustrations" by the early Southern Song painter Lou Shou, making adjustments to produce these pictures, which are masterpieces of art, notable for their vivacity ...
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Kangxi Dictionary
This book was compiled by Zhang Yushu, Chen Tingjing, and other famous philologists and linguists from all over China in response to an edict from Emperor Shengzu in the 49th year of the Kangxi era. The work was completed in the 55th year of the Kangxi era. Through diplomats, missionaries, and the 1904 Saint Louis World Exposition, the Library of Congress acquired editions of the Kangxi Dictionary published in 1716, 1780, 1827, and 1878.
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Lotus Sutra
This printed edition of this work from the Northern Song dynasty (960-1127) is the sole copy in existence. It was originally in the collection of Fu Zengxiang, and was acquired by the Library of Congress in 1941.
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Life and Activities of Shakyamuni Buddha Incarnate
The vivid colors in this Chinese book are reminiscent of the pictures in medieval European manuscripts. Liu Ruoyu (Ming dynasty) records this edition in his Neiban jingshu jilue (Outline record of imperial editions): “Life and Activities of Shakyamuni Incarnate: Four volumes, 440 pages.” The original book, by the Ming monk Baocheng, is in six juan (sections) and is titled Shijia rulai yinghua lu (Record of the teachings of the thus-come Śākyamuni Buddha), which indicates that the book was revised and combined with other texts before the printing blocks for it ...
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Grand Ceremony Celebrating the Emperor’s Birthday, Premier Compilation
This work, in 120 juan and 40 volumes celebrating Emperor Kangxi’s 60th birthday, was compiled by landscape painter and official Wang Yuanqi (1642–1715) and others and published at the imperial Wuying Hall in the 56th year of the Kangxi reign (1717). It also includes memorials by high officials to the imperial court petitioning and seeking approval for the issuance of the work. The work took several years to complete, with a total of 39 officials participating in the project. Among them was Leng Mei, a famed artist of ...
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Nanking Illustrated
This book was compiled by Zhu Zhifan of the Ming dynasty. Down through the ages, the famous sites of Jinling (Nanjing) have been called “Eight Views” or “Sixteen Views.” Zhifan broadened this list to make 40 scenes, which he had Lu Shoubai paint (the 40th scene has a colophon by Lu Shoubai). Zhifan assembled the scenes with poems and accounts of changes that the sites had undergone, written in his own hand, and printed the entire compilation. At the end are poems by Du Shiquan that harmonize with the poems ...
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A Tale of Two Gardens: Apricot Garden, Bamboo Garden
Eryuan ji (Gatherings in two gardens) was printed as a composite work by Xu Lun when he was provincial governor in Taiyuan, combining the “Painting of an Elegant Gathering in the Apricot Garden,” depicting a gathering attended by nine eminent persons including Yang Rong and Yang Shiqi, and the “Painting of a Longevity Gathering," depicting the 60th birthday party for Tu Yong, Zhou Jing, Lü Zhong, and others.
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A Complete Study of the Chinese Zither
This book includes both research on Chinese music and detailed and complete marginalia. Although the book has been damaged, it remains valuable. The prefatory note on the use of the book records its contents, including detailed research into the origins of notes and pitches; complete standards for the construction of a floor zither (qin); a compilation of the theories of musicologists; a compilation of digests of fingering techniques; a strict comparison of tunes that have been handed down or recovered, with detailed collation of measures and lines; edited essays of ...
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An Album of the Miao Minority
This book contains 41 illustrations, with texts on the left and illustrations on the right. The painting is meticulous, the engraving and drawing lively, the people lifelike, and the colors rich, retaining their freshness after more than 200 years. The illustrations show that in the region depicted, the Miao, Lao, and Han Chinese lived in mixed communities and had customs that were quite different from those in other places in China. The illustrations, organized by category, give a picture of the area and the people's way of life in ...
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Biographical Records of the Royal Mu Family
This work is a faithful copy, by a painter of the Mu clan commissioned by Joseph Rock, to reproduce ancestral portraits that had been handed down through the ages. The body of the work records the Tusi Mu of Lijiang in Yunnan from the 1st through the 33rd generations. Rock (1884-1962) was an explorer, adventurer, and scientist who was born in Austria and later became a U.S. citizen. He spent much of his life in remote areas of western China, sponsored at different times by National Geographic, Harvard University ...
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Imperial Comments Concerning Illustrations of the Cotton Industry
This book is comprised of paintings by Fang Guancheng, with illustrations and text facing each other. The text is the same as in Fang’s memorial (on the cotton industry); the illustrations are slightly different. The first volume contains eight pictures, from “Planting” to “Ginning;” the second volume contains another eight pictures, from “Fluffing the Cotton” to “Bleaching and Dyeing.”
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Fang Family Ink Illustrations
Following prefaces written by various experts, this book contains passages from “Ink Table” by Yuan Fuzheng, “Documents on Ink" by Wang Daoguan, "Rhapsody on Ink" by Wang Daohui, and "Table of Inks" by Wang Daokun, all of which praise the author, Fang Yulu. However, no mention is made of Cheng (Junfang). This would suggest that although Cheng's “Garden of Ink” had not yet made its appearance, the rift between the two had already begun.
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Illustrated Album of Yangzhou Prefecture
The album, by an unknown artist, contains twelve illustrations depicting Yangzhou Prefecture and the eleven counties of Jiangdu, Guazhou, Yizhen, Qinxing, Gaoyou, Xinghua, Baoying, Qinzhou, Rugao, Tongzhou, and Haimen. Each illustration is followed by an essay on the history of the county depicted. Situated along the Grand Canal and close to the Yangtze River, Yangzhou had been a leading economic and cultural center and major trading port since the Tang dynasty. This work provides both textual and visual testimony to its place in history. The information in the county histories ...
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Emperor Kangxi's Poems on Thirty-Six Scenic Spots of Bi Shu Shan Zhuang, the Imperial Summer Resort
Bi shu shan zhuang is China’s largest imperial palace garden. Situated in Rehe (present-day Chengde, Hebei province) in a river valley bordered by mountains on the west, north, and east, the villa consists of palace halls, lakes, plains, and mountains. Construction of the complex spanned many years, beginning in 1703 under Emperor Kangxi (1654-1722). On the occasion of the completion of the main palace complex in 1711, Kangxi bestowed the title of Bi shu shan zhuang (Summer Mountain Villa) on the villa and selected 36 scenic spots and composed ...
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Illustrated Account of the Suppression of the Rebels
Yuan Mo, the author of the work, was a Grand Inspector to Henan who, in March 1633-April 1635, during the reign of Chongzhen, the last Ming emperor, led the Ming army in attacking and suppressing the peasant rebels in the province. Yuan was at one point briefly relieved of his duty, but returned to his post and died shortly thereafter, in 1635. The events described in the work complement the account of the peasant uprising in Ming shi (History of the Ming) with many additional details. The fine engraving of ...
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Ji Guang Jing, Land of Solitude and Illumination
This three-volume work by Hong Yingming, a Ming-dynasty philosopher, known also under his style name Zicheng, contains portraits of Buddhas. Volume one depicts 19 Buddhas of India; volumes two and three contain portraits of 42 Buddhas of China. The work includes brief biographies.
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Illustrated Classic of Mountains and Seas
Shan hai jing (Classic of the mountains and seas) is a Chinese classic text describing mountains, regions within and beyond the seas, and mythic animals. The author or authors and the date of composition are unknown. During the Jin dynasty (265-420) the renowned historian Guo Pu (276-324) wrote annotations to it. His name appears in the original title of this work. The names of two illustrators, Jiang Yinghao and Wu Linfu, as well as that of the engraver, Li Wenxiao, are found at the end of the work. A similar ...
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Complete Map of the Seven Coastal Provinces
The postscript to this work indicates that it was based on an original painting by Zhou Beitang, which was later acquired by a man named Shao Tinglie who had it published, together with two other works, Wusong ko fang yang (Wusong port to the ocean) and Jiang dong xing sheng (Natural frontiers east of the river) in book form in woodblock print. The book depicts the coastal provinces of Fengtian, Zhili, Shandong, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Fujian and Guangdong; and areas near the port of Wusong, including Baoshan, Shanghai, Huangpu River and ...
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Annotations to Maps
The original inscription of this work reads: “Compiled by Li Rihua of Jiahe; supplemented by Lu Zhongmin of Qianjiang; and edited by Qian Weiqi of Gulin.” Si ku quan shu zong mu (General catalog of the imperial Siku collection) records three of Li Rihua’s works, but not this title, which leads to the conclusion that Li may not have been its author. However, the prefaces of several other reference works claim that Li Rihua was the author of this work and that it was edited and supplemented by Lu ...
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