Collection of Miraculous Formulas for the Preservation of Life


This presentation consists of two titles: Shi sheng zong miao fang (Collection of miraculous formulas for the preservation of life) and Ji jiu liang fang (Remedies for emergencies), written by Zhang Shiche (born 1504). Zhang Shiche, style name Weijing, also known as Zhiyuan Zhuren, a native of Siming (present-day Ningbo, Zhejiang), received his jin shi degree in 1523 and later held the position of minister of war in Nanjing. The first title was first printed in 1550, in 11 juan. Shown here is a reprint dating from 1569, which has two prefaces, one by Zhang Shiche from the original work of 1550, and the other dating from 1569 by Le Shanzi, Prince of Heng, also called Prince Heng Wang. Heng Wang liked the work so much that he ordered that a new edition be produced. The 1569 edition was edited by physician Ma Chongru, and the work was printed by Li Yongzhong, at the residence of Heng Wang, together with Zhang’s other title, Ji jiu liang fang. In his preface, Heng Wang notes that the theories and treatments recorded in the book had been supported by successful medical application. The 1569 edition also has a postscript by Ma Chongru. The work covers 47 subjects, including how to treat various diseases, nutrition to strengthen health, various colds, and so forth. It contains useful formulas and compounds of drugs with notes on their effects, and discusses methods of mixing drugs, their applicability, and how they are to be taken. Other topics covered include internal and external medicine, ailments of women, and conditions affecting children. Juan 2 is devoted to geriatrics. The second work has two juan, with Heng Wang’s 1550 preface.

Last updated: January 16, 2018