Records on Worthy Officials of the Dynasty of Brightness


Zhao dai ming liang lu (Records on worthy officials of the dynasty of brightness) was compiled by Tong Shiming, a magistrate of Yongchun during the Wanli reign (1573‒1620), edited by Li Qiaoxin and Qian Shiyang, and published by Tong Wenlong, the compiler’s brother. In addition to the compiler’s own preface, the work has five other prefaces and two postscripts, dated between 1605 and 1612, mostly written by fellow magistrates. This Wanli edition records 12 emperors, 53 ancient and honorable families, and has biographies of more than 400 famous officials of the Ming dynasty. The biographies are grouped into 13 categories, such as officials at the founding of the dynasty, officials who died in battles, and so forth. Because it was written in annalistic biographical style, the work was sometimes listed in catalogs as a work of history, as it contains many historical events and data, and sometimes as biography. Some consider this work of historical literature second in importance only to the famous Song dynasty Dong du shi lue (Brief historical events of the Eastern Capital).

Last updated: January 10, 2018