Collected Works on Members of the Hanlin


The expression Luan po in the title Luan po zhi cao (Collected works on members of the Hanlin Academy) is another name for the Hanlin Academy. The Hanlin Academy was an academic and administrative institution founded in eighth-century Tang dynasty China by Emperor Xuanzong (reigned 712‒55). Membership in the academy was restricted to an elite group of scholars, who performed secretarial and literary tasks for the court. The compiler of this collection was Huang Hongxian (1541‒1600), a native of Xiushui, (present-day Jiaxing), Zhejiang Province. He achieved the jin shi degree in 1571 and became a member of the Hanlin Academy. Later he worked as head of the Household Administration of the Heir Apparent, minister of the Ministry of Personnel, and was an imperial envoy to Korea. He was also a prolific author. This collection contains his essays on 130 or so members of the Hanlin Academy, such as Shen Shixing (1535‒1614), who later became a cabinet minister, and Shen Li (1531‒1615), a grand secretary, grand academician, and Confucian philosopher. The work was printed during the Wanli reign (1573‒1620). It has two prefaces, one by Huang Ruliang (1554‒1647), a minister of the Ministry of Rites, and another by Tao Wangling (1562‒1609), a fellow Hanlin academician. The work was not listed in the general catalog of Si ku quan shu (Complete Library of the Four Treasuries). It bears two seal impressions of the original private collector of the book, whose name was Yunxiang (1686‒1730), the 13th son of Emperor Kangxi.

Last updated: January 10, 2018