Newly Annotated, Compiled, and Printed Guide for Officials Pursuing Their Careers


Xin ke jing zuan xiang zhu shi tu xuan jing (Newly annotated, compiled, and printed guide for officials pursuing their careers), printed during the Tianqi reign (1621‒27), is a work compiled by Wang Shimao (1536‒88), a native of Yuzhang, Jiangxi Province, and edited and printed by Jiang Shiji. Not much is known about these two men, but they were known to have also cooperated in the compiling and printing of another work. Based on Wang Shimao’s preface, written in 1626, and some historical records on publishing and printing, it can be assumed that Wang Shimao was probably the owner of one of the better-known printing shops in Nanjing, named Cheshulou (House for Carriages of Books). The work was a practical guide for people who were pursuing an official career. The heading for each of the eight juan refers to subject matter important for officials, such as the practice of divination for an official appointment; official notices and formats of official notices; dispatch of official documents; inspections; selfless, careful, and diligent handling of official business; important principles of government; and important legal matters. Under each section the author quotes various examples taken mostly from Wujiang in Suzhou and Tongcheng in Anhui.

Last updated: January 10, 2018