Collected Works on Confucian Rites and Music


The compiler of this work was Shi Jishi, the editor his disciple, Shi Zuo. Shi Jishi received his jin shi degree during the Wanli reign (1573‒1620) and was the magistrate of Jiexiu and Yuci. Later he became a censor and a vice minister. While in Jiexiu, he was known to have directed the building of wells and dikes, regulated water systems, founded schools, and had textbooks printed. Because of some displeasure he incurred, he was dismissed and returned home, where he devoted himself to scholarship, compiled works (including this one) on rites and music, opened charity granaries, and built dikes. In 1393 the first Ming emperor, Hongwu, decreed observance of the Confucian rites and music, which officials were instructed to follow. However, it was only during the late Ming that the practice of ritual dance and music became a trend. Music and dance always accompanied the sacrifices and were considered essential to move the spirits and men and to cause them to harmonize with heaven and earth. This work was printed during the Tianqi reign (1621‒27). As its blueprint it used and quoted extensively from several earlier works, such as Da cheng yue wu tu pu (Illustrated manual of Confucian rites and music) by Zhang Yunjian, Wen miao li yue zhi (Records on the rites and music of the Wen Temple) by Pan Man, Kong miao li yue kao (Study of the rites and music of Confucius Temple) by Qu Jiusi (1546‒1617), and Xian shi ji dian kao (Study of sacrificial rites by early masters) by Ma Po. The work has seven prefaces, including those by Shi Jishi and Shi Zuo, and a postscript by Wang Sishun, dated 1622.

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5 juan, 3 volumes

Last updated: January 10, 2018