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Harvard-Yenching Institute

Book Culture and Textual Transmission in Sung China

Author(s): Susan Cherniack
Source: Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies, Vol. 54, No. 1 (Jun., 1994), pp. 5-125
Published by: Harvard-Yenching Institute
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Journal of Asiatic Studies.

Book Culture and
Textual Transmission
in Sung China

Universityof Colorado,Boulder

TEXTS are always changed in the course of transmission, by ac-

cident or design. But not all changes are sanctioned, as Hung
Mai AA (1123-1202) reminds us with his story of the five Sung
woodblock-engravers who were struck by lightning after changing
the texts of prescriptions in a medical book they had been engrav-
ing.1 Whether a particular change is sanctioned will depend on the

This study originated in a paper delivered at the 202d Meeting of the American Oriental
Society, Cambridge, Mass., March 1992; portions of later drafts were presented at seminars
at Harvard University and the University of Washington. I wish to thank the participants for
their comments, and to record my gratitude to colleagues who read parts or all of the evolving
manuscript and offered criticisms that led to many improvements, and also to those who sug-
gested or generously provided materials that enriched this study: Maggie Bickford, Peter K.
Bol, Judith M. Boltz, William G. Boltz, Timothy Connor, S6ren Edgren, Ronald C. Egan,
Michael A. Fuller, Horst W. Huber, David R. Knechtges, Paul W. Kroll, Frederick W.
Mote, AlfredaJ. Murck, Harold D. Roth, Kidder Smith, Stuart H. Sargent, Shenjin ,?,
Hugh M. Stimson, and Stephen F. Teiser. This study was completed in 1993 with fellowship
support from the National Endowment of the Humanities.
Note on conventions: Unless otherwise indicated, Sung wood-block editions are identified
by the date of engraving, rather than by dates of printing or distribution, which may be very
different. On the rationale for this convention, see S6ren Edgren, "Southern Song Printing
at Hangzhou, " BMFEA 62 (1989): 25. The translations of government agencies and official ti-
tles are in most cases taken from Charles 0. Hucker, A Dictionaryof OfficialTitlesin Imperial
China(Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1985). Old and Middle Chinese reconstructions
follow Hugh M. Stimson.
I-chienchihAMz- (Shih-wan-chuan lou ts'ung-shuedition, 2d ser., 1879): Ping-chih,"Shu-

nature and status of the text, the authority vested in the individual
making the change, and also on society's understanding of what
transmission entails. That Chinese responses to textual change have
differed historically from Western responses is partly due to differ-
ences in the concepts of transmission. This essay will draw attention
to aspects of Chinese textual transmission favoring change, with spe-
cial reference to the Sung (960-1279), a period of remarkable tex-
tual volatility. Let us begin by drawing a contrast to Western atti-
Modern Western textual criticism has come to regard transmis-
sion as a wholly degenerative process through which texts become
"corrupted" and "contaminated." It views changes occurring in
transmission pessimistically as a series of injuries inflicted on a text.
The rhetoric of Western textual criticism underscores this. F. W.
Hall and Martin West speak of the "pathology of texts,' '2 Paul
Maas cautions that some texts may be "incurable,"3 A. E. Hous-
man compares interpolations to "bullet-wounds, ' 4 and David

chou k'o-kung," 12.1a-b. Hung Mai says the woodblock engravers belonged to a rowdy
group attached to the Shu-chou 2f')I1Regional Headquarters(Fu-chien Circuit), who were em-
ployed in 1046 to produce half of the blocks for the Huai-nan Fiscal Commission edition of a
standard medical reference, Wang Huai-yin's TE1RP (fl. 976-84) T'ai-p'ingsheng-huifangt
+%!*Jt (992). Hung says: "These five men were big drinkers and lazy by nature. Being im-
patient to finish the blocks, they freely changed characters having many strokes and the
dosages for medicines, thus misleading their fellow men. So they were punished. " According
to another account of this episode, the engravers deliberately changed the prescriptions be-
cause they were angry at not being paid on time, and, of six guilty parties, four were struck
dead; see Wang Ming-ch'ing E (1127-after 1214), T'ou-hsia lu RON (Shanghai:
Shang-wu yin-shu-kuan, 1920), "Shu-chou k'an-chiang," 27a. As this story suggests, errors
in medical imprints were a great source of worry in Sung times. The preface to the Fu-chien
Fiscal Commission edition of T'ai-p'ingsheng-huifang (1147) reports that the editors had to cor-
rect over ten thousand errors and omissions made in previous editions; see Okanishi Tameto
FfiAA, Sung i-ch'ien i-chi k'ao 5W1H0j?W (Peking: Jen-min wei-sheng ch'u-pan-she,
1958), p. 928. Both versions of the story are quoted in Yeh Te-hui 'fft (1864-1927), Shu-
lin yu-hua i (1928), collected with his Shu-lin ch'ing-huaZ1t#jC (1920) in Shu-lin
ch'ing-hua,Shu-lintsa-huaMMmtM, ed. Li Mi -]!M and Nagasawa Kikuya Aj-f
3fii1 (Taipei: Shih-chieh shu-chui, 1970), 1.7. Yeh Te-hui's works are indispensable sources
for the history of Chinese books and printing.
2 F. W. Hall, A Companion to Classical Texts (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1913), p. 154.
Martin L. West, TextualCriticismand Editorial TechniqueApplicableto Greekand Latin Texts
(Stuttgart: B. G. Teubner, 1973), p. 57.
3 "Unheilbar," see Textkritik, 3d ed. (Leipzig: B. G. Teubner, 1957), p. 1; and TextualCriti-
cism, trans. Barbara Flower (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1958), p. 12.
4 "The Application of Thought to Textual Criticism" (1921), reprinted in Art and Error:
Vieth ministers to texts that have been "bowdlerized and cas-
trated. "5 Transmission is seen as a highly risky business. This view
may say as much about modern anxieties about recovering and
preserving the Western cultural legacy as about textual transmis-
sion itself.
The role assigned to the Western textual critic is to intervene in
this historical process to purge the text of its accumulated filth and
disease. The vehicle that has been developed to present the results is
the "critical edition," which takes as its goal the construction of a
text that accurately reflects the author's intentions, or one that ap-
proaches that ideal as closely as possible.6 As textual criticism has
been conventionally practiced, the editor applies the genealogical
method through the two interrelated stages of recensioand emendatio,
ending up in the aptly named divinatio phase of conjectural emenda-
tion, where editorial innovations are sanctioned, and where, as Hall
has said, the critic attempts to "transcend the tradition . . . by
eliminating the residuum of error which even the best documents
will be found to contain."7

ModernTextualEditing,ed. Ronald Gottesman and Scott Bennett (Bloomington: Indiana Uni-

versity Press, 1970), pp. 11-12.
5 "A Textual Paradox: Rochester's 'To a Lady in a Letter' " (1960), reprinted in Art and

Error,pp. 102-3.
6 On the theory of a critical edition, see Fredson Bowers, "The Method for a Critical
Edition," in On EditingShakespeare and theElizabethanDramatists(Philadelphia: University of
Pennsylvania Library, 1955), pp. 67-101, and "Principle and Practice in the Editing of
Early Dramatic Texts," in Textualand LiteraryCriticism(Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1959), pp. 117-50; alsoJames Thorpe, "The Ideal of Textual Criticism," in Principles
of TextualCriticism(San Marino: Huntington Library, 1972), pp. 50-79.
7 Hall, Companion, p. 108. On the genealogical method associated with Karl Lachmann
(1793-185 1), the classic studies are by Sebastiano Timpanaro, LagenesidelmetododelLachmann
(1963; revised edition, Padua: Liviana, 1981), and Giorgio Pasquali, Storiadellatradizionee crit-
ica deltesto(1934; 2d edition, Florence: Le Monnier, 1962), the latter of which provides an im-
portant critique. For an overview of historical developments, see G. Thomas Tanselle, "Clas-
sical, Biblical, and Medieval Textual Criticism and Modern Editing," Studiesin Bibliography
36 (1953): 21-68; reprinted in TextualCriticismand ScholarlyEditing(Charlottesville: Univer-
sity Press of Virginia, 1990), pp. 274-321. For an introduction to textual methods, start with
William Proctor Williams and Craig S. Abbott, An Introduction to Bibliographical
and Textual
Studies,2nd ed. (New York: Modern Language Association, 1989), pp. 52-75 (on the Lachman-
nian method, pp. 56-57), and the useful bibliography, pp. 101-4. An interpretation of the
method is given in William G. Boltz, "Textual Criticism and the Ma Wang tui Lao Tzu,"
HJAS 44.1 (1984): 185-224; see also Harold David Roth, The TextualHistoryof theHuai-nan
Yet the goal of the critical edition, contemporary textual theorists
argue, is undermined by the scholarly apparatus attached to the
edition's reading text. The use of the apparatus changes the reading
experience. As we move between one version of the work and
another, the shape of the text shifts. What we encounter is not the
work as the author wrote it but what Jerome J. McGann calls a
"shape-shifting" entity-an ever-changing work of composite
authorship, which reveals itself as an ongoing social project, with
contributions from sundry readers, editors, collators, printers, and
booksellers.8 From this perspective, the variations among the ver-
sions may be seen to mark events in the life of the work, like rings
on a tree. And insofar as a literary work may be said to have a life,
the process can never be arrested, although this may be an implicit
goal of the scholar who prepares the critical edition. Whether or not
the critical text succeeds in fulfilling the author's intentions (and
this is usually unverifiable), we can say with McGann that it is cer-
tainly "not a text which ever existed before."9 It is not the author's
text reconstituted somehow. Like all previous versions, it is a new
text, which emerges in a particular historical context but carries
with it the entire history of its evolution.'0
The concept of a literary work as a natural shape-shifter opens the
way to the study of textual change as a social phenomenon and to
the non-pejorative evaluation of a work in different phases of its de-
velopment. This approach, which in recent years has been variously
developed by D. F. McKenzie, Peter L. Shillingsburg, and
McGann, among others," may be applied to the study of change in

Tzu, Monographs of the Association for Asian Studies, no. 46 (Ann Arbor: Association for
Asian Studies, 1992), pp. 121-22.
8 A Critiqueof ModernTextualCriticism(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1983), pp.
9 McGann, Critique,p. 92.
'1 Ibid., p. 93.
" See McKenzie, Bibliography and theSociologyof Texts, The Panizzi Lectures, 1985 (Lon-
don: British Library, 1986); Shillingsburg, "Key Issues in Editorial Theory," Analytical&
Enumerative Bibliography 6 (1982): 3-16, ScholarlyEditingin the Computer Age (Athens: Univer-
sity of Georgia Press, 1986), and "An Inquiry into the Social Status of Texts and Modes of
Textual Criticism," Studiesin Bibliography42 (1989): 55-79; and essays by McGann in The
Beautyof Inflections:LiteraryInvestigationsin HistoricalMethodand Theory(Oxford: Clarendon
Press, 1985), and especially, "The Socialization of Texts," in The TextualCondition(Prince-
ton: Princeton University Press, 1991), pp. 69-87. Useful critiques of the work of McKenzie,
Chinese textual transmission, for it suits both the complex evolution
of older texts and the tolerance for the collaborative authorship that
characterizes traditional Chinese textual transmission.


Like Western textual critics, Chinese critics expect texts to be al-

tered in transmission. Unsanctioned changes are typically described
as changes that falsify a text. The character o Mt, as used in phrases
describing textual error such as o-ch'uan Xt,4, o-wu YtX, o-miu ,
and o-t'o M{t%,means "error" or "to make erroneous by chang-
ing" -that is, to falsify a text by changing (IL) the words (0412
An early instance of unsanctioned change in a historical chronicle is
noted in the Lii-shih ch'un-chi'iu Mik*# attributed to Li! Pu-wei M
T-,i (d. 235 B.C.). The expert who finds the error is Tzu-hsia +X
(Pu Shang Ii, 507-420 B.C.), traditionally identified as the textual
critic among Confucius's disciples:
When Tzu-hsia was on his way to Chin, he stopped in Wei, [where he encoun-
tered] a person reading aloud a historian's record, which said: "The Chin army
crossed the River with three pigs. " Tzu-hsia said: "That's wrong. [-Ew] should be
EA. e and are close, and W and A resemble each other. " When he arrived in
Chin and made inquiries, they said: "It should be "The Chin army crossed the
River in [the cyclical year] EA.,,13

Shillingsburg, McGann, and others are found in G. Thomas Tanselle, "Historicism and Crit-
ical Editing, 1979-85," in TextualCriticismSinceGreg:A Chronicle,1950-1985 (Charlottesville:
University Press of Virginia, 1987), pp. 121-53, and in "Textual Criticism and Literary Soci-
ology," Studiesin Bibliography44 (1991): 87-99.
12 See glosses on o as wei S. ("falsify") and hua fL ("change") in Cheng Hsiian's ]VA
(127-200) commentary, in K'ung Ying-ta 7LA (574-648), comp., Mao Shihcheng-i ="iL
A, in [Ch'ung-k'an Sung-pen] Shih-san-ching chu-shufuchiao-k'an-chi
1tq? t? !iWI
;I9Eg (1815-17), ed. Juan Yuian iG7G (1764-1849), 2 vols. (facsimile reprint, Peking:
Chung-hua shu-chii, 1980), 11:1.165a (no. 183, "Mien-shui" H*), and 12:1.173c (no.
191, "Chieh-nan shan" iIiW). See also the glosses on o as hua("change") and asyao #;-P
("rumor, false speech") in Hsing Ping Jfi3ji'(932-1010), comp., Erh-yachu-shuAf., in
Shih-san-chingchu-shu,3.17c ("Shih-yen" 2,) and 2.9a ("Shih-ku" 2 subcommentary), respec-
13 Liu-shihch'un-ch'iu(SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "Shen-hsing lun" 2: "Ch'a ch'uan,"

22.1 lb. See also in Wang Su TE (195-256), K'ung-tzuchia-yii7L#g (SPTK edition, 1st
ser.), "Ch'i-shih-erh ti-tzu chieh" 38, 9.2a. Note that for sheI "cross water," the variant tu
A ("ford") is found in the K'ung-tzuchia-yuiversion and in citations of this passage in Liu
Hsieh V!IJIl(c. 465-c. 522), Wen-hsintiao-lung 1 see Wen-hsintiao-lunghsin-shufu
In the Wei version, the pigs join the campaign as the consequence of
a confusion in ancient script characters that resemble one another.
In ancient script, pig (shih C) and the earthly branch, hai A, are
both written with the same graph SFi,14and the heavenly stem, chi E,
is written with the graph x, which, when carelessly written, can
look like the graph for three (san ), -.15 In fact, confusion of
similarlyshaped graphs has long been recognized by Chinese critics
as one of the most fruitful sources of transcription errors. So the
Pao-p'u tzu MtVf predicts, "As the proverb says, when a document
is transcribed three times, 'fish' is bound to become 'Lu' (the state
or surname; stupid), and 'emperor' is bound to become 'tiger' "
FiAE3E9;` in proof of which, the second half of this sen-
tence is now written in most versions as " 'vacant' is bound to
become 'tiger"' Ot' 17

t'ung-chien Tfi fA*, Indexdu Wensin tiao long, avectextecritique,ed. Wang Li-ch'i fWIJi,
Chung Fa Han-hsiieh yen-chiu-so t'ung-chien ts'ung-k'an, no. 15 (1951; reprint, Taipei:
Ch'eng-wen Publishing, 1968), "Lien tzu" 39, p. 104, 11. 9-10; and in Ma Tsung ZO (d.
823), comp., I-lin gH (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), 2.27a.
14 According to Hsui Shen 24:, Shuo-wenchieh-tzu&i,ZTm (presented A.D. 121); see Shuo-
wen chieh-tzuchu i1, ed. Tuan Yiu-ts'ai &Et (1735-1815) (Ching-yunlou ts'ung-shuedition,
1821), hai 14B.44b, shih9B.35b. See also Wang Shu-min's iE1 evaluation of the old-script
hai graph in his Chiao-ch'ouhsueh Om*, Chung-yangyen-chiuyiian li-shihyi-yenyen-chiuso chuan-
k'an d no. 37 (1959), 3b-4a.
See Shuo-wenchieh-tzuchu, chi 14B.21b, san 1A.17b.
Ko Hung A (283-344), Pao-p'u tzu, as quoted in Yu Shih-nan J#: (558-638),
comp., Pei-t'angshu-ch'aoJft-4P, ed. K'ung Kuang-t'ao 7L (1888 or soon after; fac-
simile reprint, 2 vols., Taipei: Hsin-hsing shu-chii, 1978), "K'an-chiao miu-wu," 101.2b;
I-lin, 4.17b; Li Fang aII (925-96) et al., comp., T'ai-p'ingyu-lanjciIzPt (SPTK edition,
3d ser.), "Cheng miu-wu," 618.3b; and Sun I * (d. after 1205), Lu-chaishih-erh pien FW
-y8 (Chih-pu-tsuchai ts'ung-shuedition, 25th ser., 1811), "Shih-lei," 16.14b. In Pei-t'ang
shu-ch'ao,hu )j is written with the variant form S. The same form is seen in Han "pa-fen
A54 script" manuscripts from Ma-wang-tui; noted in the discussion of this proverb in "Tso-
t'an Ch'ang-sha Ma-wang-tui Han-mu po-shu" I WW 220.9
(1974): 56.
17 Pao-p'u Tzu (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "Nei-p'ien": "Hsia-lan," 19.7a, and other stan-

dard editions. The change to hsuwas intended to produce a graph similar in shape to the stan-
dard form for hu Aj. Earlier, hu must have been written with a variant that resembles ti I.
Possibilities include -N (see n. 16) and also *, which occurs in the phrase 4#k** cited in
the entry for this graph in Wu Jen-ch'en :ffi (ca. 1628-89), comp., Tzu-huipu *j,
"Chin-pu" rh I; see Han-yi ta tzu-tienffllfftT , comp. Han-yii ta tzu-tien pien-chi wei-
yuan-hui i 8 vols. (Wuhan: Hu-pei tz'u-shu ch'u-pan-she; [Chengtu:] Ssu-
ch'uan tz'u-shu ch'u-pan-she, 1986-90), p. 731. Both variants are attested in Six Dynasties
inscriptions, e.g., t in 'Wang Tan-hu mu-chih" EP& :X (A.D. 359); and 1F in "Sun
An explicit goal of traditional Chinese textual criticism has been
to weed out unsanctioned changes in order to restore works to some
former or original state (fu ch'i chiu &A-M, fu ch'iyiian &A-YR).The
identification of that state has varied according to contemporary con-
structions of the perennial cultural project to "restore antiquity"
(fu-ku iW-). The process has been described since Han times in
terms of a socio-political metaphor, "to instill order in" or "regu-
late texts" (chih-shu M)," the link between political and textual or-
der having been established early on in the Ta-hsueh chapter of the
Li-chi, which describes an ideal state as one in which "vehicles
have uniform axle lengths, texts have uniform script, and morality
adheres to a uniform code of ethics" (28.3). A uniform system of
writing was the original ideal, but in later times the statement was
reinterpreted to include the elimination of textual discrepancies
among different versions of the same work.
To aid in the identification of unsanctioned changes, textual crit-
ics have developed taxonomies of textual errors. Most taxonomies
concentrate on changes in the Confucian classics and pre-Han
philosophical works, works that, together with the Han histories,
have traditionally attracted the most attention from Chinese textual
scholars, due to their overriding cultural importance. A number of
such inventories have been produced since the Ch'ing, a period dur-
ing which text-critical debates dominated intellectual discourse.

Ch'iu-sheng teng erh-pai-jen tsao-hsiang" *kt- A ARM (483-502); see Fushimi

ChudkeitM 'PR, comp., Shododaiiten . 2 vols. (Kadokawa shoten, 1979), p.
18 Early uses include the Han shu account of the collation of the ChouI by Liu Hsiang XIJ[0I

(79-8 B.C.) and his son Liu Hsin t (d. A.D. 23). They are said to "chih" the work; see Ban
Gu i!ft (32-92), comp., Han shu, in Po-napen erh-shih-ssushih iZ-tV1R. (SPTK edi-
tion, 1930-1937 [hereafter PNPS]), "Ch'u Yuan-wang chuan," 36.10b. Also note Wang
Ch'ung's FEIt (A.D. 27-ca. 100) remark: "Putting documents in order (chihshu) and estab-
lishing accurate registers is the work of assistant clerks. Discussing the Way and debating pol-
icy is the work of wise scholars"; Lun-heng&N (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "Hsiao-li p'ien,"
13.33a. The phrase chih-shuoccurs in the common expression chih-shufa ft;, "method for
correcting texts, " with an early occurrence in Chia Ssu-hsieh N!, Ch'i-minyao-shuW$X
WI(first half of the sixth century) (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "Tsa-shuo" 30, 3.16a. Beginning
in the Han, chih-shualso occurs in various titles of government officials whose principal or
nominal responsibility was to prepare or handle documents; see Hucker, nos. 1060, 1065-67.
Interestingly, chihcan also mean "to treat" (an illness), but the pathological metaphor was
never applied to textual criticism.
Among the most influential are Wang Nien-sun's Ei (1744-
1832) postface to Tu Huai-nan Tzu tsa-chih , and Yu
Yiieh's RN (1821-1907) Ku-shu i-i chu-li J.2 These serve
as the inspiration for Wang Shu-min's exhaustive enumeration of
122 types of textual error in Chiao-ch'ou hsiieh.2'Working toward a
simplified typology, Chiang Yiian-ch'ing JiEP has analyzed the
types listed by Wang Nien-sun and Yu Yueh to produce a list of
fourteen basic types of error.22 Such taxonomies show the range of
textual permutations that Chinese readers have come to expect in
transmission. My own inventory of common types of textual errors,
in the appendix, outlines the types of errors to which this study
A comparison of lists of Chinese and Western textual errors
confirms that people everywhere are much alike, at least when it
comes to making mistakes. Copyists are prone to commit the same
sorts of psychological blunders in transcription, and revisers are
motivated by the same good intentions to improve texts.23 But

19 The postface is variously cited as " Tu Huai-nan Tzu tsa-chihhsiu" a, "hou-hsii" &,
"shu-hou" A& (dated 1816); see Wang Nien-sun and Wang Yin-chih FEqI?L(1766-1834),
comp., Tu-shutsa-chih * (1832) (1870 edition; facsimile reprint, Kao-yuWang-shihssu-
chungf TEHJiU9, no. 2, [Nanking]: Chiang-su ku-chi ch'u-pan-she, 1985), 9.21a-29a.
Wang's list of types is presented in a convenient reference format in Chang Shun-hui 4 ,
ed., Wen-hsienhsuehlun-chuchi-yao t (Sian: Shan-hsi jen-min ch'u-pan-she,
1985), pp. 345-58. All categories are presented, but the editor gives only the first example
cited by Wang in each case.
20 See Ku-shui-i chii-li, in Ti-i lou ts'ung-shu -g t; (Ch'un-tsait'angch'iian-shuedition,
1899), 5:5-7. A punctuated, typeset edition is available in Yu Yueh et al., Ku-shui-i chu-liwu-
chungKiU (1956; reprint, Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1983), pp. 86-156. This book copies
Ku-shui-i chu-li ts'ung-k'an 0fi] (Changsha: Ting-wen shu-she, 1924), which includes Yii's
list and supplementary lists by Liu Shih-p'ei WIJ;, Yang Shu-ta *1t, Ma Hsii-lun ,K
{1; it also adds a list by Yao Wei-jui ttgg. The contents of this book have been incorporat-
ed into Ku-shui-i chu-li tengch'i-chung4-L4 (Taipei: Shih-chieh shu-chii, 1962).
21 See "T'ung-li" AM, Chiao-ch'ou hsaeh, 136b-21 lb, an expansion of Wang's earlier
enumeration of ninety types in "Chiao-ch'ou t'ung-li" iAi, CYYY23 (1952): 303-47.
22 See Chiao-ch'ou hsuehshihK.P (Shanghai: Shang-wu yin-shu-kuan, 1935), pp. 5-11
(in the simplified character reprint [Hofei: Huang-shan shu-she, 1985], pp. 3-7). Chiang's
list has been copied, with some revisions and additional examples, in Tai Nan-hai t ,
Chiao-k'anhsuehkai-lunR.bJg (Sian: Shan-hsi jen-min ch'u-pan-she, 1986), pp. 37-48.
Chiang's book has also recently been published by Chao Chung-i imf+ R as Chao's own
work, under the title Chiao-k'an hsuehshih-lueht (Changsha: Yiieh-lu shu-she, 1983).
23 For listings of Western textual errors, see Hall, Companion,pp. 153-98; Vinton A.

Dearing, A Manual of TextualAnalysis(Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California

Press, 1959), pp. 10-18, repeated with supplements in his Principlesand Practiceof Textual
Chinese critics tend to interpret the errors rather differently from
their Western counterparts. On the whole, Chinese critics have
been satisfied to explain unsanctioned alterations in terms of per-
sonal mistakes due to mechanical lapses in attention, simple igno-
rance, or willful recklessness in changing texts (wang-kai kI) on the
basis of wild conjectures (i i kai tzu 1J14$f, JJL&Qkj).They do not
take textual change to be the inevitable fruit of an intrinsically cor-
ruptive process of transmission, as Western critics might. The
streak of fatalism found in Western theories of textual incurability
or indeterminacy is also lacking here.
This difference is because most Chinese editors, while recogniz-
ing the difficulty of correcting texts, hold that virtually all texts are

Criticism(Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1974), pp. 44-54; and
James Willis, Latin TextualCriticism(Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1972), pp. 53-
I do not mean to suggest by this comparison that lists of Western textual error, which guide
scholars in determining the direction in which textual change takes place, may be applied
straightway for the same purpose to Chinese texts. P. M. Thompson and Michael Robert
Broschat, though adopting elements of Dearing's method of textual analysis, wisely refrain
from applying Dearing's rules of directional textual error in the absence of adequate analysis
of the characteristics of change in Chinese texts; see comments in Thompson, TheShen Tzu
Fragments,London Oriental Series, no. 29 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1979), p. 180
n. 2; Broschat, " 'Guiguzi': A Textual Study and Translation" (Ph.D. diss., University of
Washington, 1985), pp. 81-82. Roth follows suit in adopting Thompson's modifications of
Dearing in his analysis of the filiation of Huai-nanTzu editions, see pp. 324-25, 383-85 n. 2,
414 nn. 3-4. However, Thompson does allow two directional principles involving lacunae as
variants, which he believes "have validity independent of particular historical conditions.
These are that in simple variations between a lacuna and an illegible graph, change is in the
direction of the lacuna, and that in simple variations between a lacuna and an omission,
change is in the direction of the omission"; idem. For Kuei-kuTzu texts, Broschat posits direc-
tionality in add-omission variations (change is in the direction of the omission) and transposi-
tions (change is in the direction of the transposition shown in a single text); p. 82.
For an experiment to integrate Western and Chinese rules in a textual study of ChinP'ing
Mei, see James T. Wrenn, "Textual Method in Chinese with Illustrative Examples,"
CHHP, n.s., 6.1-2 (1967): 150-98, esp. 161-63. Recently Yumiko F. Blanford has proposed
rules of lexical, vacant (equivalent to add-omission), and transpositional errors, which may
be applied to determine the most probable original word among variants offered by different
versions of a work. Her methodology draws on stemmatics and the lectiodifficiliorprinciple as
applied by Boltz in "Textual Criticism and the Ma Wang tui Lao Tzu"; see Blanford, "A
Textual Approach to 'Zhanguo Zonghengjia Shu': Method of Determining the Proximate
Original Word Among Variants," Early China16 (1991): 187-207. Compare the application
of Hall's rules to classical Indian texts in S. M. Katre, Introduction to Indian TextualCriticism
(Bombay: Karnatak Publishing House, 1940), esp. pp. 55-71.
correctable. Until recently, moreover, textual criticism has not been
regarded as a matter to be left to specialists alone, but as an activity
that all educated persons should pursue, and one that lies within
their normal sphere of competence. By perfecting texts, scholar-
editors participate in the great Confucian tradition of transmission,
where there is less emphasis on disfigurement and more emphasis
on the opportunities presented in transmission to improve texts.
The challenges are by no means underrated. The scholar Yen Chih-
t'ui M, (531-91), recognizing that literati are fond of revising
texts, may caution eager players against setting upon texts with-
out sufficient prior study: "To collate (chiao I_)24 and establish the
text of a work is far from easy. [The Han palace collators] Yang
Hsiung - (53 B.C.-A.D. 18) and Liu Hsiang set the standards.
Let no one recklessly apply orpiment [tz'u-huang MR-used to erase
errors in texts being collated] before exhaustively examining the
world's texts."25 The dedicated book collector and collator Sung
Shou 5M (991-1040) may lament that the job is never done: "Col-
lating is like sweeping up dust. As you sweep in one place, dust
springs up in another."26 The philologist Tuan Yii-ts'ai &3Ef
(1735-1815), while remaining convinced that in most cases "the ac-
curacy of the text can be determined by collation, " may still acknowl-
edge the difficulty of correcting longstanding errors resulting from
earlier, unindicated emendations.27 Yet despite such worries, all be-

24 Chiaois consistently translated as "collate" throughout this study. As a procedure of tex-

tual criticism, the meaning of chiaois not restricted to the English sense of comparing and
tabulating textual similarities and differences. Chiaocovers a broad range of editorial activi-
ties, from major surgery that may be required to revise and establish a new text down to
proofreading. The specific meaning depends on the context.
25 Yen-shihchia-hsin Jffif 011 (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "Mien-hsuieh chang" 8, 1.36a.
Yen's warning is frequently quoted in discussions of collation methods. Textual criticism is a
main topic of this chapter, translated by Teng Ssu-yiu in FamilyInstructions for the YenClan:
Yen-shihChia-hsiinby YenChih-t'ui,T'oung Pao Monograph no. 4 (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1968),
pp. 64-84, esp. 83-84.
26 Sung Shou goes on to explain that even after books are collated three or four times, er-

rors still remain; Shen Kua &M (1032-96), Meng-hsipi-t'an V , see Meng-hsipi-t'an
chiao-chengK.f, ed. Hu Tao-ching -MA , 2 vols. (1956; reprint, Shanghai: Shang-hai ku-
chi ch'u-pan-she, 1987), 25.824, no. 479. Sung Shou's comment has become proverbial. For
information on Sung as a book collector and collator, see ibid., pp. 824-26; and P'an Mei-
yueh *!V1, Sung-taits'ang-shuchia k'ao i (Taipei: Hsueh-hai ch'u-pan-she,
1980), pp. 67-70.
For Tuan Yu-ts'ai's opinion on the difficulty of coping with unindicated emendations,
lieve that responsible intellectuals should assume an active editorial
role in transmission. Thus Yu Yueh speaks with the traditional con-
fidence of scholar-editors when he says, "If you wish books to
improve me, then you must first let me improve the books.""
In China, the prospect of failure has been offset by a faith in
transmission as the process through which texts become perfected.
The exemplar is Confucius, who said of himself: "I transmit. I
don't make new works" ANiffiT-Ifl (Lun-ya 7. 1), and who is venerated
as the editor who produced the Six Classics, resuming an old family
tradition started by a seventh-generation ancestor, Cheng-k'ao-fu
iEtX [3t] (fl. 799-28 B.C.), identified as the earliest collator in
Chinese literary history.29 Tradition holds that Confucius did not
merely pass on the texts in the form in which he found them. He
changed them, thereby transforming them into ching M!, canonical
works. P'i Hsi-jui 1-$ (1850-1908) makes this point in explaining
that prior to Confucius, the component texts of the Classics existed

see "Ch'ung-k'anMing-taoerh-nienKuo-yuhsii" IT in Ching-yiinlouchi Mrli

*M (Ching-yiinlou ts'ung-shuedition), 8.9b-Oa. For his opinion on the relative difficulties of
collating a copy of text against a base-text to eliminate all discrepancies, as opposed to collat-
ing the base-text to determine whether it faithfully reflects the author's original and whether
its meaning has been interpreted correctly, see "YuiHu Hsiao-lien (Shih-ch'i) shu" AtM1*
t*1, ibid., 5.35a-b; and "Yui chu t'ung-chih shu lun chiao-shu chih nan" g, *::L
t:Xt, ibid., 12.47a, where Tuan, in discussing relative difficulties, expands his defini-
tion of collation to include the evaluation of the author's meaning as the more difficult stage.
This definition is widely quoted in scholarship on collation; see translations in Cheuk-woon
Taam [T'an Cho-yiian Xif], TheDevelopment of ChineseLibrariesUnderthe Ch'ingDynasty.
1644-1911 (Shanghai: Commercial Press, 1935), p. 71, and Benjamin A. Elman, From
Philosophyto Philology:IntellectualandSocialAspectsof Changein LateImperialChina(Cambridge:
Council on East Asian Studies, Harvard University, 1984), p. 68.
28 "Sun Chung-jungcha-i hsii" M rtL#8, in Ch'un-tsai t'ang tsa-wen 3f 2 ;
(Ch'un-tsait'angch'iianshu edition, 1899), 6:7.8b. Yu Yueh is echoing an earlier comment by
Huang Teng-yen k to the young Lu Wen-ch'ao U (1717-96) on Lu's textual
scholarship. Here, Yu repeats the comment as praise, but Lu was stung by the remark, which
he recalls in a later apologia, "Ch'iin-shushih-puhsiao-yin" if iMJ'|, in Pao-chingt'ang
wen-chi*,MM1: (Pao-chingt'ang ts'ung-shuedition, 1795), 7.16a-b.
29 Cheng-k'ao-fu is named as the arranger of the "Shang Odes" in the "Shang sung p'u"
0 E of the Mao Shih(he put the "Na" BPode first) and as the collator of the "Odes" in the
Kuo-yii ; see Mao Shihcheng-i20:3.352b; and Kuo-yu(SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "Lu yii" $
f 2, 5.15b. Confucius is earliest identified as a seventh-generation descendent in the genealo-
gy given in Ssu-ma Ch'ien J (145-ca. 86 B.C.), comp., Shih-chi,PE (PNPS), "K'ung-
tzu shih-chia," 47.3a. Both traditions are discussed by K'ung Ying-ta in Mao Shih cheng-i
as documents and collections of statements, but they lacked canoni-
cal significance. This, they acquired by virtue of Confucius's correc-
As a model, Confucius's work provided broad sanction for vari-
ous types of editorial interventions. According to different tradi-
tions, Confucius created the Shih ching by excising 2,700 poems from
an original corpus of some 3,000 and reorganizing the selected
pieces; he created the Shang shu by rearranging and editing down
original historiographic documents in 3,240 chapters (p 'ien ,) into
a work of 120 chapters; he either abridged or augmented a Chou
ritual text to produce the 17-chapter I-li; he corrected a musical text
or texts to produce the Yiiehching (lost by Han times); he compiled
the Chou I by combining ancient divination texts attributed to Fu-
hsi and King Wen, with exegesis by the Duke of Chou, and adding
commentaries known as the "Ten Wings" to expound their mean-
ings; and he edited and reworded the historical records of the state
of Lu to produce his Ch'un-ch'iu.31 The changes were justified by the
consequences: by dint of Confucius's improvements, these im-
portant texts survived. As the K'ung-tzu chia-yuiTL-FT- explains:
"The texts and documents of the former kings were confused and
disorganized. . . . Confucius handed down their teachings to
posterity by fashioning them into model forms."32 Such a view
provided constant encouragement for editorial activism aimed at or-
ganizing, reorganizing, and refashioning texts.
Though the exact extent and nature of Confucius's involvement
with different classics has been long debated, the traditional consen-
sus is that Confucius took an active role in composing some of
them.33He was not merely an editor or compiler, an abridger or expur-
gator. In the case of the ChouI and the Ch'un-ch'iu, he comes close to
being what we would call an author. To sum up the contributions

See Ching-hsiehli-shih Fff (1907), ed. Chou Yii-t'ung )9pTMt1J
(1928; revised edi-
tion, 1959; reprint, Taipei: Ho Lo ch'u-pan-she, 1974), pp. 19-20. P'i Hsi-jui's idea is noted
and discussed byJohn B. Henderson in Scripture,Canon,andCommentary: A Comparison of Confu-
cian and WesternExegesis(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991), p. 29.
31 P'i Hsi-jui, Ching-hsueh li-shih, pp. 19-26. Extensive discussions are provided in his
Ching-hsuieht'ung-lunOAA (1907) (1936; reprint, Taipei: Ho Lo ch'u-pan-she, 1974).
32 K'ung-tzuchia-yiu,"Pen-hsing chieh" 39, 9.1 lb.
33 See Henderson, Scripture, pp. 21-30.
by saying that Confucius was more than a "mere" transmitter may
be to define transmission too narrowly and from the Western per-
spective.34 The traditional interpretation of Confucius's textual
work as an act of transmission suggests that the Chinese under-
standing of transmission includes a concept of collaborative author-
ship that is excluded from the modern Western term.
Yet Confucius has also been praised as a model for conservatism
in editing. This image is supported by two passages in the Lun-yii,
often quoted by editors. In one passage, Confucius urges disciples
to "listen much but leave out what you have doubts about (+'Ig1M#),
and speak cautiously about the remainder" (2.18). In the other,
Confucius criticizes current text-editing by saying: "I am old
enough to have known a time when historians would leave a blank
in the text [or leave out a text, when they had doubts about it] 3MR
P_zZ-t, and when people who had horses would lend them to
those who had none. Both customs are now defunct" (15.25). Fur-
ther proof of Confucius's conservatism is found in two entries in the
Ch'un-ch'iu that are said to display textual errors that Confucius
recognized but left uncorrected because he wished to teach later edi-
tors caution in emending texts. The locus classicus is the Kung-yang
commentary on the Ch'un-ch'iu entry for Duke Chao f-, year 12
(529 B.C.).35 The Ch'un-ch'iustates: "Kao Yen of Ch'i led an army
and subdued North Yen's Earl at Yang" WWl MAXkAMTW Ac-
cording to the Kung-yang chuan, the passage should read: "Kao Yen
of Ch'i led an army and subdued the Noble Scion, Yang Sheng"''
fRLOR1i I . That is, in the Ch'un-ch'iu text, po {b (Earl)
has replaced kung X (Noble), yii t (at) has replaced tzu 3T(Scion),
and the final character sheng I (Yang's personal name) has been
In the Kung-yang chuan, when a disciple urges Confucius to emend
the text, Confucius reproves him: "The 'Earl at Yang'-what can
that be? [It should be] 'the Noble Scion, Yang Sheng.' The Master

34 Henderson appears to adopt this perspective; see ibid., p. 29.

3 See Kung-yangchuanchu-shu9#T1ML, in Shih-sanchingchu-shu,22.126b. The second
Ch'un-chiuentry is from Duke Chao, year 14, summer, fourth month; see the Tu Yuefte
(222-84) commentary on lacunae in the text, in Ch'un-ch'iuTso chuancheng-i47.373c; dis-
cussed in Lu Wen-ch'ao, "Ch'un-ch'iutsun-wang fa-wei pa" t=t43EE , Pao-chingt'ang
said: 'I was aware of the event at the time it occurred.' A person be-
side him asked: 'Since you know about it, why don't you correct it?'
He replied: 'How will you ever deal with matters about which you
know nothing?' "36 Why did Confucius not correct the text? The
Kung-yangchuancommentator Ho Hsiu PMif4 (129-82) explains that it
was because Confucius "wanted to provide a model for posterity, so
that others would not make conjectural changes to texts. 'There
were four things the Master never did: he never guessed, never was
arbitrary, never was obstinate, and never relied on purely subjec-
tive judgments' [Lun-yui 9.4]." Yet the restraint shown here has
been treated as an exception to Confucius's normal practice. As the
subcommentator Hsui Yen #,A" says, "Confucius made a great
many changes in the Ch'un-ch'iu, but he refrained from changing
this as a special case because he wished to leave an example. " Thus,
rather than detracting from Confucius's image as an activist editor,
the Kung-yang chuan tradition has served to enhance the credibility
and authority of the substantial changes Confucius is thought to
have wrought elsewhere in the classics, because these changes are
seen as proceeding from a mentality of extreme caution. The empha-
sis on Confucian probity provides further justification for textual in-
tervention by conservative editors. Extraordinary textual changes
are made on received texts by evidential scholars such as Tuan
Yii-ts'ai and Yu Yueh who cite Confucius as the model for collator-
editors.38 From this we see that activism need not conflict with con-
servatism in Chinese traditions of textual criticism.


In China, then, the sanction for textual change was from the be-

36 Kung-yangchuanchu-shu22.126b.
3 David McMullen notes that the origins of this subcommentary are obscure. It is not list-
ed in the bibliographical treatises of the two T' ang dynastic histories. The earliest attribution
to Hsu Yen comes from Tung Yu * (fl. 1130), who dates Hsu to the late T'ang. Modern
scholars have argued variously that the subcommentary is of ninth-century or even Northern
Ch'i (550--77) origin. For details, see StateandScholarsin T'angChina(Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1988), p. 297 n. 47.
38 See Tuan Yii-ts'ai, "Ching-i tsa-chihsii" , in Ching-yiinlou chi, 8.5a; Yu
Yiieh, "Sun Chung-jung cha-i hsi, " 9a-b.
ginning implicit in the role of the editor as one who transmits. Given
the activist orientation of textual criticism in China, in seeking to
understand historical transformations of texts, the most fruitful
question to start with may not be "Why are changes made?" but
rather "Why are changes not made?" That is, what are the limits to
textual innovation? The constraints may be seen most readily in the
case of canonized texts-the Confucian classics, for example-
where the desire for textual perfection and the prohibition against
change posed by traditional authority are at their strongest.
Canonized texts appear to provide the fewest opportunities for tex-
tual innovation in any culture. After all, one of the functions of
canonization is to stabilize and perpetuate a single version of a text
declared to be authoritative. The stabilization of a text is absolutely
necessary, because the more attention is focused on a text, the more
times it is copied, the greater are the chances that it will be altered
by accident or design. Between the Eastern Han and the Southern
Sung, sets of Confucian classics were engraved in stone half a dozen
times,39 the purpose being not only to display a standard version of
the texts but also to ensure that no further changes occurred in
them. Copies were then disseminated by rubbings and transcrip-
Engraving the classics on woodblocks was also originally hoped to
have the same petrifying effect. The Five Dynasties Directorate of
Education (Kuo-tzu chien MfTK) imprint of the Nine Classics (932-
53), begun in the Later T'ang (923-36) and continued and complet-
ed under three successive, short-lived dynasties, was undertaken
with such an expectation.40 The purpose was to establish a new text

39 Han (A.D. 175-83), Wei (204-48), T'ang (833-83), Shu (950-1024), Northern Sung
(1041-54), Southern Sung (1134-77); and also once more, in the Ch'ing (1791-94); after
Tsien Tsuen-hsuin, Writtenon Bambooand Silk: TheBeginningsof ChineseBooksand Inscriptions
(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1962), p. 73 n. 37. Different dates are given by other
scholars. With regard to the Five Dynasties and Sung sets, Paul Pelliot dates the first Shu
(Ch'eng-tu) engravings to as early as 944 and lists additions up to 1123: see his Les D6butsde
l'imprimerieen Chine,Oeuvres Posthumes de Paul Pelliot, no. 4 (Paris: Imprimerie nationale,
Librairie d'Amerique et d'Orient, 1953), ed. Robert des Rotours with additional notes and
an appendix by Paul Demieville, pp. 55-61. Fumoto Yasutaka ?;jT cites evidence that
work on the Northern Sung classics (K'ai-feng) continued to 1060; see Hokuso6 ni okerujugaku
no tenkaiILLM ' f (Shoseki bumbutsu ryuitsiikai, 1967), pp. 15-18.
40 The original Nine Classicswere the ChouI, Shangshu, Mao Shih;the ThreeRites: viz., I-li,

Li-chi, Chouli; and the ThreeCommentaries:viz., Ch'un-ch'iu Tsochuan(includes the Ch'un-ch'iu

and at the same time discourage further textual innovations, as
Ming-tsung Rg (r. 926-33) declares in his edict authorizing the
project: "If anyone wishes to transcribe the Classics, he must copy
these printed editions. Interpolations from any other sources and
the publication of alternative editions are hereby forbidden.""1
Establishing new texts for the Confucian classics by correcting the
texts of the T'ang stone classics in Ch'ang-an would confirm the
dynasty's claim to legitimacy. Wood-block printing (xylography)
was recommended to Ming-tsung as a more economical means of
establishing a new version of a canonical text than engraving it on
stone.42 The main purpose in utilizing printing seems not to have

text), Kung-yangchuan,and Ku-liangchuan.The project was subsequently expanded to include

imprints of additional classics (Hsiao ching,Lun-yii,Erh-ya)and two T'ang philological refer-
ences (Chang Ts'an 4, Wu-chingwen-tzu ii.T- [preface 776], and T'ang Yiian-tu ,
jt, Chiu-chingtzu-yang &T-0 [833-34]). All were completed by 953.
The principal sources for details on the Five Dynasties project are Wang P'u HE- (932-81),
comp., Wu-taihui-yaoKif*O (completed 961) (Wu-Yingtienchii-chen pan shuedition, 1899),
"Ching-chi," 8.2b-3b; Wang Ch'in-jo HE_~ (962-1025) et al., comp., Ts'e-fuyiian-kueiffi
e, (1015), see Sung-penTs'e-fu yiian-kuei5!Zt (facsinmilereprint, composite of mid-
Southern Sung Mei-shan editions, 4 vols., Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1989), 608.18a-19a;
and Wang Ying-lin TI (1223-96), comp., Yu-hai EiE (1337-40 edition; facsimile
reprint, 8 vols., Taipei: Hua-wen shu-chu, 1964) [hereafter YH], "I-wen" LW:, "Hou
T'ang Chiu-chingk'o pan," 43.10b-llaff; and Mr. Ye V, Ai-jih chai ts'ung-ch'aoM F O
(Shou-shanko ts'ung-shuedition, 1844; facsimile reprint, Ts'ung-shuchi-ch'engch'u-pien,1935-
1937), 1.3-6, quoted in Shu-linyu-hua 1.1. Most of the documents are collected in Chu I-
tsun ** (1629-1709), Ching-ik'ao ,E i (SPPY edition), "Lou-pan," 293. 1a-2b, and
the valuable reference, Wu-taiLiang Sungchien-penk'ao KN 5iOV$t, comp. Wang Kuo-
wei TEK, (1877-1927) Hai-ning Wang Ching-anhsien-shengi-shu edition, 1936; reprint,
WangKuo-weihsien-sheng ch'uan-chi - *-: Hsii-pien g vol. 1 (Taipei: Ta-t'ung
shu-chiu, 1976), 1.1-12. For a narrative account and translations of documents, see Thomas
Francis Carter, TheInventionof Printingin Chinaand its SpreadWestward(1925), 2d ed., revised
by L. Carrington Goodrich (New York: Ronald Press, 1955), pp. 67-81, correctedand supple-
mented by Pelliot, Les Dibuts, pp. 50-54, 61-81; informative discussions in Chang Hsiu-min
J,, Chung-kuoyin-shua shu te fa-ming chi ch'i ying-hsiang 3
(1958; reprint, Peking: Jen-min ch'u-pan-she, 1978), pp. 64-69; Li Shu-hua , "Wu-
tai shi-ch'i te yin-shua" ;f IJ, Ta-lu tsa-chih;d*ML,> 21.3 (1960): 1-9; and
Tsien Tsuen-hsuin, Scienceand Civilisationin China,by Joseph Needham, vol. 5: Chemistry and
ChemicalTechnology, pt. 1: PaperandPrinting(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985),
p. 156.
41 Wu-taihui-yao8.2b. Kwang-tsing Wu remarks: "The primary object of Feng and his as-

sociates was to set the standard for a correct text of the classics, rather than making them
more accessible to the masses"; see "Scholarship, Book Production, and Libraries in China
(618-1644)" (Ph.D. diss., University of Chicago, 1944), p. 88.
42 See Sung-penTs'e-fuyuan-kuei608. 18a- 19a.
been to replicate the texts in huge quantities, as was the case in Bud-
dhist printing projects, where replication itself was seen to confer
karmic benefits; nor was printing intended to replace hand-copying
as the popular medium for transmission, though the Directorate
editions were put up for sale."3 The Directorate imprints were in-
tended to serve as standards for personal transcription, just as the
T'ang stone classics had.
It is only later, in the Sung, with the shift to print culture, that
printing came to replace transcription as a direct means of dis-
seminating canonical texts, even as it became abundantly clear,
through the exploitation of printing's potential for allowing endless
adjustments and revisions, that.printed texts lacked the finality of
texts engraved in stone. Accompanying this shift was a change in
the concept of authority in texts. The supports that had earlier
served to stabilize the texts were weakened, and canonical texts, like
other texts, became open to textual innovation. We turn now to a
consideration of some characteristics of Sung textual change and the
contributions of printing to the destabilization process.


Textual innovations in Sung canonical texts were carried out in

the context of widespread attacks on the authority of received texts
extending to the Confucian classics. From the Ch'ing-li period
(1041-49) on, the revival of Confucian scholarship was stimulated
by and in turn contributed to a current of skepticism that sped the
collapse of longstanding bibliographic and textual assumptions
upon which earlier scholarship had rested. The objects of skepticism
included the authority of the definitive Han-to-T'ang commentaries

4 This, according to the report of Ming-tsung's edict in Ssu-ma Kuang t ,)% (1019-86),
comp., Tzu-chiht'ung-chienf (1092), ed. Hu San-hsing -MEt (1230-87) (Hu K'o-
chia -;A [1757-18161 edition, 1816; supplemented and typeset, Peking Chung-hua shu-
chii, 1957), 277.9065 no. 4, 291.9495 no. 28. The selling of the Directorate classics set a prece-
dent for the Sung, excoriated by Hu Yin (1098-1156) in Tu-shihkuan-chienOsp.,
see Chih-t'angTu-shihkuan-chien& (Yiian-ling chuinchai, 1254, repaired in the Ming; Na-
tional Central Library, Taipei), 28.24b-25b; quoted in Ma Tuan-lin ,%M (1254-1325),
comp., Wen-hsient'ung-k'ao J (completed 1308, engraved 1339) (Shih-t'ungedition,
1935; reprint, 2 vols., Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1986) [hereafter WHTK]: "Ching-chi
k'ao" RWEX 1:174.1507c.
and subcommentaries attached to various classics, the credibility
of traditional attributions of authorship of different classics, and the
integrity of the classical texts themselves.44 The nature and extent
of the textual changes proposed have already been documented in
detail by P'i Hsi-jui and Chou Yii-t'ung, and more recently, by
Yeh Kuo-liang *MA in his study of Sung skepticism and textual
change in the ThirteenClassics.45The force of such criticisms may be
gathered from the following summary of Sung opinions:
The ChouI was in most need of repair. It was said that the "Kua-tz'u" Mw
(Words on the Hexagrams) and "Yao-tz'u" 1.0 (Words on the Lines) were not
the work of King Wen or the Duke of Chou. Many critics argued that some or all of
the "Ten Wings" had been composed by someone other than Confucius; these sec-
tions should be demoted or excised. In the standard text prepared in the seventh
century by K'ung Ying-ta from earlier editions by Wang Pi H0 (226-49) and Han
K'ang-po O*M (Han Po *{IfI, fl. 371-85), portions of the Wang and Han com-
mentaries had been interpolated into the text; portions of the "Ten Wings" had
been miscopied into the "Kua-tz'u" and the "Yao-tz'u"; errors had been per-
petuated in the chapter-titles, and chapters and sections of chapters appeared in the
wrong order, the first part of the "Hsi-tz'u" $ (Appended Words, one of the
"Ten Wings") attracting the most criticisms on transpositions. Various correc-
tions were urged to restore the text to its original state, but this, too, was a matter
for serious disagreement.
As for the Shangshu, the "Great" and "Lesser" Prefaces, attributed respectively
to K'ung An-kuo and Confucius, were judged to be spurious. So were twenty-five
chapters contained in the old-script version of the classic discovered in Western
Han times in a wall of Confucius's former house; these, it was argued, should be ex-
pelled from the canon. Even in the more reliable modern-script version, some chap-
ters were out of order, chapter titles were wrong, and chapter divisions had been
misplaced so that the concluding portion of one chapter now appeared in the next,
chapters that originally were separate had been combined, and new chapters had
been created by splitting a single chapter in two, while within individual chapters,
gaping lacunae, interpolations (including redundancies due to miscopying), and
transpositions were also found.
The "Great Preface" of the Mao Shih was not by Tzu-hsia or the early Han redac-

4 This generalization is offered by Ch'ii Wan-li ,M f; in "Sung-jen i-ching te feng-ch'i"

5ARJWAYAA, Ta-lu tsa-chih29.3 (Aug. 1964): 93; reprinted in Chii Wan-li hsien-sheng
ch'iianchi it, vol. 14 (Taipei: Lien-ching ch'u-pan shih-yeh kung-ssu, 1984), p. 237.
45 See Pi Hsi-jui, Ching-hsiieh
li-shih, pp. 220-80; Yeh Kuo-liang [Kuo-liang Yap], Sung-jen
i-chingkai-chingk'aoj Wen-shih ts'ung-k'an, no. 65 (Taipei: Kuo-li T'ai-wan
ta-hsiieh ch'u-pan wei-yiian-hui, 1980).
tor, Mao Ch'ang -t-. It was a later Han concoction. The "Lesser Prefaces" at-
tributed variously to Tzu-hsia, Mr. Mao, and Confucius, were mostly (if not entire-
ly) Han composites, too. The structure of the classic itself had been tampered with:
poems from different states had been grouped together under a spurious blanket
category- "Kuo-feng" RJR (Airs of the States)-that did not exist in Confucius's
original. And the arrangement of poems in groups of ten (decades) under another
category, "Hsiao-ya" JJ (Lesser Elegances), had been confused so that some
groups now had thirteen or fourteen poems. The original system of titling poems
by quoting from the first line of the poem had been ruined by later editors, who
devised two-character titles taken from phrases elsewhere in the poem. The poem
texts were also in disorder: in some poems, the order of stanzas had been inverted.
Other poems now concluded with stanzas mistakenly transposed from yet other
poems. Worst of all, as many as thirty-one debauched poems as well as debauched
stanzas found in two other poems, had been interpolated into the text during the
Han, in violation of the expurgative rule used by Confucius in making his selec-

In the case of the three ritual classics, the Chouli, I-li, and Li-chi, it was claimed
that part or all of the first two works and some chapters in the third had not been
composed by their reputed early Chou authors. Neither the Chou1inor the I-li was
composed by the Duke of Chou; the "Chung-yung" chapter of the Li-chi was not
by Tzu-ssu -TEP, (492-31 B.C.), and the "Ju-hsing" 'ME chapter was not by Confu-
cius. The Chou1iwas said to be an anthology culled from several works; in the com-
pilation, portions of the original component texts had been misplaced. The I-li was
seen to be pitted with lacunae. The Li-chi was found to suffer from interchapter
transpositions; some chapters, notably the "Chung-yung" rts and the "Ta-
hsiieh, " which would enter the canon as independent texts after the Sung owing to
the influence of Chu Hsi (1130-1200), were also marred by significant internal
transpositions requiring correction.

The Tso, Kung-yang,and Ku-liang1x. commentaries on the Ch'un-ch'iuwere not

composed by Tso Ch'iu-ming ATH1, Kung-yang Kao -T-A, or Ku-Iiang Ch'ih
VP~~,or perhaps Masters "Kung-yang" and "Ku-Iiang" were the same person,
since both pairs of characters constitute fan-ch'ieh1AVJspellings for the surname
Chiang V. The Tso chuanwas disparaged as a later patchwork, dating from the
Ch'in-Han period, like the other commentaries.
The Erh-yadictionary was a miscellany cobbled together by Han scholiasts, not the
definitive work of any sage forebear.
The Hsiao chingwas not composed by either Confucius or Tseng-tzu 9# (505-435
B.C.), as heretofore thought, but rather by one of Tseng-tzu's disciples, Yiieh-
cheng Tzu-ch'un J:FTA,or Tzu-ssu. Moreover, most of the Hsiao ching com-
prised later commentary drawn by unknown persons from the Tso chuanand other
works. The commentary had been miscopied into the text of the classic, which was
itself marred by interpolations and transpositions. The work should be restored to
consist of one section of the classic and fourteen sections of commentary, interpola-
tions should be excised, and transpositions corrected-all this, according to Chu
The current text of the Lun-yuwas not the same as that prepared by Confucius's dis-
ciples. It too displayed interpolations and transpositions between and within chap-
ters, all warranting correction.
The Meng Tzu was regarded as not necessarily the work of Mencius or even a faith-
ful report of Mencius's words by his immediate disciples. Later disciples had added
to it. All such spurious sections should be excised. Copyist errors should be cor-

What is remarkable about these criticisms is the importance at-

tached herein to "author-based" authority in texts-that is, authori-
ty deriving from claims of original authorship made for various clas-
sics or their components-and the corresponding debasement of
claims of textual authority derived from traditional transmission
and embodied by the orthodox versions endorsed by the imperial
government. The denial of the authorial origins of various details of
the classics provides a sanction for textual revisions, and such re-
visions are carried out with the goal of restoring an authorial text.
Textual authority has not been lost, but rather transferred from a
tradition-based model to a model in which individual readers may
assert their own rights to determine authorial intent in the classics,
independent of tradition. A good characterization of the shift is
provided by Lu Yu's li (1125-1209) well-known summary of
developments in classical scholarship down to his time:
From the T'ang down to the beginning of this dynasty scholars did not dare to criti-
cize [the Han classical commentators] K'ung An-kuo and Cheng K'ang-ch'eng a
*St [Cheng Hsiian], much less the sages. Since the Ch'ing-li period, scholars have
made the meaning of the classics clear to a degree unmatched by those who pre-
ceded them. Yet they have dismissed the "Hsi-tz'u" [of the ChouI], vilified the
Chouli, cast doubt on the Meng Tzu, ridiculed the "Yin cheng" [Yin Expedition]
and "Ku ming" [Testamentary Charge, both chapters of the Shangshu], and re-
jected the "Preface" of the [Mao]Shih. They do not find it difficult to criticize the
classics, much less the commentaries.46

What Sung scholars did find difficult was to agree with one
another about which changes should be adopted. Did the framing of
the question of textual authority inhibit the development of a con-
4 Quoted in Wang Ying-lin FE1f (1223-96), K'un-hsuehchi-wen J see Wengchu
sensus? Textual skeptics disagreed sharply about the criteria to be
used in scrutinizing and altering texts, and, in the absence of a de-
veloped textual methodology that anyone could be trained to apply,
their arguments often turned on the question of personal authority:
Should the textual critic be sanctioned by some standard, and if so,
what should that standard be? Two distinct views were expressed on
this score. Ssu-ma Kuang and Su Shih (1036-1 101) offered opinions
representative of the traditional viewpoint, exposed in the earlier
statement by Yen Chih-t'ui, that scholars should meet some
criterion, such as official rank, personal erudition, or age. Thus,
Ssu-ma Kuang, who himself argued against the traditional attribu-
tions of authorship of the Chou I, Chou li, and Meng Tzu, had this to
say about younger skeptics:
The up-and-coming scholars of today all parrot what they hear.... In reading the
[Chou] I, they may not be able to recognize the hexagrams and lines yet, but they al-
ready claim the "Ten Wings" are not the words of Confucius. In reading the Li
[Rites], they may not know how many chapters there are, but they already claim
the Chou kuan [the Chou 1i] is a work of the Warring States period. In reading the
[Mao] Shih, they may not have got through the "Chou-nan" and "Shao-nan" yet
[the first two sections in the "Kuo-feng"], but they already claim that Mao and
Cheng [Hsuian] were nothing more than punctuators. In reading the Ch'un-ch'iu,
they may not yet know the names of the twelve Dukes, but they already claim that
the The Three Commentaries [the Tso chuan, Kung-yang chuan, and Ku-liang chuan]
should be wrapped up and put into storage.47

Su Shih, author of a variety of conjectural revisions to the Chou I,

Shang shu, and other literary texts, attacked revisions proposed by
those whom he describes as troglodytes:

K'un-hszTehchi-wenI$j5, ed. Weng Yuian-ch'i GfT (1 750-1825) (SPPY edition), "Ching-

shuo," 8.40a, where the likely culprits are identified by Weng and the earlier commentators
YenJo-ch'ii I (1636-1704) and Ch'iian Tsu-wang -J L (1705-55). These are accept-
li-shih, p. 220. The wording of the translation follows that of
ed by P'i Hsi-jui; see Ching-hsiieh
Daniel K. Gardner in ChuHsi and the Ta-hsueh(Cambridge: Council on East Asian Studies,
Harvard University, 1986), pp. 10-11, with some rephrasings and one change in interpreta-
tion ("[Great] Preface" rather than "prefaces of the Shih"); cf. Steven Jay Van Zoeren's
translation in PoetryandPersonality:A Studyof theHermeneuticsof theClassicof Odes(Shying)(Stan-
ford: Stanford University Press, 1991), p. 155.
47 "Lun feng-su cha-tzu" WAftJ:f, in Wen-kuoWen-cheng Ssu-ma-kung wen-chifflWZiE
%5t * (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), 45.9b-10a; quoted in K'un-hsiiehchi-wen8.38b-39a.
People of recent generations lightly change texts based on pure conjecture. Since
shallow and base personalities share the same tastes, the multitude [inevitably]
agrees with them. As a result, the old texts are becoming more falsified with each
passing day-a hateful situation! Confucius said, "I am old enough to have known
a time when historians would leave a blank. " I remember that the older generation
did not dare to alter texts; that is why the old large-character Shu X texts are all

By contrast, Neo-Confucian thinkers frankly encouraged skepti-

cism in the study of the classics as an effective strategy for learning,
especially for beginners. "The student must first of all be able to
doubt," Ch'eng I I1g (1032-1107) says.49 This sentiment was echo-
ed by many others, including the most successful Sung reviser of
the classics, Chu Hsi, who taught that "great doubts lead to great
progress. " He put his philosophy into practice by proposing numer-
ous innovations in the Chou I, Shang shu, Li-chi, Lun-yu, Hsiao ching,
and Meng Tzu.50The difference in opinion points to a basic change
in the construction of textual authority, providing a sanction for
textual innovation while rendering the authority of such innova-
tions profoundly ambiguous.
But how is textual authority constituted? As Shillingsburg has

48 "Shu chu-chi kai tzu" , in Tung-p'ot'i-pa tgiMi (Chin-taipi-shu edition,

12th ser., 1630-42), 2.1 la; quoted in Shu-linyii-hua1.3 from Su Shih,Ch'ou-ch'ih pi-chi ItIl
W, 1 (Frederick Mote cautions that, since this work was compiled under doubtful circum-
stances, the accuracy of the quotation is open to question [pers. com.]). Su Shih goes on to
criticize emendations in the ChuangTzu, and poems of T'ao Ch'ien 1 (365-427) and Tu
Fu f?: (712-70). Su's estimation of the reliability of editions from his native Shu is not con-
sidered accurate.
49 Ho-nan Ch'eng-shihwai-shu noFTfIV, ed. Chu Hsi (preface 1173), in Erh Ch'eng
ch'iian-shuLZI.W (SPPY edition), 11.2b. For related aphorisms by other Neo-Confucian
thinkers, see Yeh Kuo-liang, Sung-jeni-ching,pp. 153-55.
50 Chu's remark is quoted in Chang Hung 4 and Ch'i Hsi WIER5 (both fl. 1251-66),
comp., Chu-tzutu-shufa *-T*: (1266) (Ying-yinWen-yu'anko Ssu-k'uch'uan-shuedition,
1983-86), 1.31a. The role of skepticism in Chu Hsi's advocacy of open-mindedness in learn-
ing is addressed in Daniel K. Gardner, "Transmitting the Way: Chu Hsi and His Program
of Learning," HJAS 49.1 (1989): 158-59, and repeated in Learningto bea Sage(Berkeley and
Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1990), pp. 46-47. For details of Chu Hsi's work
as a textual critic, see Ch'ien Mu O C/u-tzuhsinhsueh-an * vol. 5 (Taipei: San-
min shu-chii, 1971), pp. 191-341; and Ch'ien's discussion of Chu's Han-wenk'ao-i WMtAj
(completed1197), a textualstudy of the worksof Han Yui# (768-824), "Chu-tzuyu
chiao-k'anhsuieh"+ffi; A,, HYHP2.2 (1957):87-113; also Ts'ao Chih W?, "Chu
Hsi yii Sung-taik'o-shu"*<9WPtIJ*, Wu-han ta-hsueh
(she-hui pan)e
ttZ (8:~*44ff) 1989, no. 2: 114.
said, authority is not a quality inherent in a work; it is an attribute
granted, within a conceptual framework, by the individual, group
of individuals, or social institution "that has the right to generate or
alter [the] text of the work. " That is to say, authority is an attri-
bute granted by the party or parties who control the text. As the case
may be, the text is felt to belong to the reader, to the sponsoring so-
cial institution, or to the author alone. But a text is usually felt to be-
long to more than one party, who share the power-but to unequal
degrees-to confer textual authority.52
At the outset of the Sung, textual authority in the Confucian clas-
sics was monopolized by the imperial government, which claimed
to be the most faithful custodian of the authorial texts, a claim
confirmed by a long history of orthodox transmission. The bond be-
tween the imperial sponsor and the canonical author seemed indis-
soluble. Against this combination, the authority of the individual
reader was comparatively weak. This relationship was transformed
by attacks on the credibility of the imperial versions. The effect was
to separate imperially sponsored textual authority from author-
based authority, creating the opportunity for potent new alliances
between individual readers and canonical authors, through which
readers assumed a more active trusteeship of auctorial texts. No
matter that many of the textual changes proposed by readers never
won general or lasting acceptance: implanting the idea that imperial
authority and textual authority were not necessarily one and the
same was sufficient to promote the destabilization of the received
texts. The texts were now in play. The determination of authority
in texts became far more ambiguous, because it was more equally
shared among the hugely increased number of referees concerned.
One consequence of this realignment is highlighted by chin-shihex-
amination questions set by Ou-yang Hsiu (1007-72) in 1057, includ-
ing one inviting candidates to confront four conflicting explanations
in the "Hsi-tz'u" about the origin of the eight trigrams, in evaluat-
ing the traditional claim that the "Hsi-tz'u" was "the work of the
sage." Every candidate would have been familiar with Ou-yang's
iconoclastic argument advanced twenty years earlier in "I huo

5' Shillingsburg, ScholarlyEditing, p. 169.

Ibid., pp. 15-17.
wen" RimlI'1 that the traditional attribution was spurious: the vari-
ant explanations gave certain evidence of multiple authorship; the
"Hsi-tz'u" was actually a commentary (chuan f) incorporating in-
terpretations by later scholars. The examination question asked
respondents to accept this skeptical position but to find significance
in the work as such.53 This was the first of many Sung chin-shih ex-
amination questions requiring candidates to assess the authenticity
of the received texts of the classics.
As if in recognition of this changed state of affairs in matters of
textual authority, in the Hsi-ning period (1068-77), the imperial
government relinquished its exclusive right to generate canonical
texts by rescinding its monopoly over the printing of the classics.
From this time forward, the classics could be printed and reprinted
freely by anybody, without advance government permission.54

5 See "Nan-sheng shih chin-shih ts'e-wen san-shou," ?'U5_ , in "Ts'e-

wen shih-erh shou, " Chu-shihchi 48, in Ou-yangWen-chung kungchi k (SPTK edi-
tion, 1st ser.), 48.8a-b; "I huo wen san-shou," Chu-shihchi 18, Ou-yangkungchi 18. 1a-4a,
esp. 2a-3a; "San-nien wu kai wen" _ Chu-shihwai-chi10, Ou-yangkungchi 60.7b-
8a. In another work, It 'ung-tzuwen "ii%#IJ (chuan3), Ou-yang Hsiu analyzes the contradic-
tions and redundancies among the four explanations for the origin of the trigrams to prove his
claim that the "Hsi-tz'u" is a composite commentary incorporating interpretations by later
scholars; see Ou-yangkungchi 78. la-7b; excerpted in P'i Hsi-jui, Chinghsuehli-shih, pp. 224-
25 n. 19. The same charge is repeated in "Ch'uanI t'u hsii" f* rp|, Chu-shihwai-chi 15,
Ou-yangkungchi 65.4a-6b. A second examination question raises doubts about the authentici-
ty of a part of the Chouli; see Ou-yangkungchi48.7a-b. Su Shih and Su Ch'e ,, (1039-1112),
who both were passed in the 1057 examination, went on to write scathing attacks on the work;
see P'i Hsi-jui, Ching-hsueh li-shih,pp. 225-26 n. 20. On skepticism in examination questions,
see Yeh Kuo-liang, Sung-jeni-ching,pp. 151-52. For a different interpretation of the 1057 ex-
amination questions, see Peter K. Bol, " This Cultureof Ours":IntellectualTransitionsin Tang
andSungChina(Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992), p. 193. The 1057 examination is
better known for the uproar created by the decision to pass only those candidates who wrote
their essays in old-prose style; see James T. C. Liu, Ou-yangHsiu (Stanford: Stanford Univer-
sity Press, 1967), pp. 150-52; and Ronald C. Egan, TheLiteraryWorksof Ou-yangHsiu (1007-
72) (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984), pp. 27-28.
5 See Lo Pi V0 (twelfth century), Lo-shihchih-igFkj. (Hsuieh-hailei-pienedition, chi-yii
4th ser., 1831; facsimile reprint, 1920), "Ch'eng-shu te-shu nan" 1.3b; quoted in Ching-ik'ao
293.6a. Lo says that in the Chih-p'ing period (1064-68) and earlier j+JAlTO, it was still for-
bidden to print the classics without permission of the Directorate. Beginning in the Hsi-ning
period, the restriction was completely relaxed f From this statement, the
Russian Sinologist K. K. Flug derives a date of 1064 for the end of the permission require-
ment; see "Chinese Book Publishing during the Sung Dynasty (A.D. 960-1279): A Partial
Translation of Istoriia Kitalsko6 Pechatnoi Knigi Sunskof Epokhi by Konstantin Konstan-
tinovich Flug" [Moscow, 1959] (M.A. thesis, University of Chicago, 1968), p. 3. (Flug mis-
While the Sung government maintained its right to establish texts
for the examinations, the texts it established were no longer auto-
matically felt to be the most authentic versions. They had become


Printing played a key role in the dismantling of textual authority,

although printing's contributions to the destabilization process have
to date received little attention in studies of Sung social and intellec-
tual history. While the importance of printing to other develop-
ments in Sung culture is well recognized, the main emphasis has
been on the function of printing as a powerful facilitating mecha-
nism: by making books both less expensive and more widely availa-
ble, it is agreed, printing helped make possible the Sung renaissance
in knowledge and scholarship.55 Yet many writers are quick to add
that printing's influence goes well beyond this. To clarify the dis-
tinct contributions of Sung printing, comparisons of the similarities
and differences between the impact of printing on Sung China and
on early modern Europe have been offered. Most comparisons seem
to support the much broader generalizations advanced by Tsien
Tsuin-hsuen about the respective contributions of printing to
Chinese and Western civilizations. Tsien finds that in both China
and Europe printing contributed to the growth of knowledge,
scholarship, the popularization of education, the spread of literacy,

identifies the source as Lo Ta-ching ,WS, Ho-lin yi-lu 04T3E?,.) Denis Twitchett also
states that all privately printed editions of Confucian classics were banned until 1064, Printing
and Publishingin MedievalChina(New York: Frederic C. Beil, 1983), p. 32.
5 Ming-sun Poon, "Books and Printing in Sung China (960-1279)" (Ph.D. diss., Uni-
versity of Chicago, 1979), pp. 67-84; see also the following (listed in chronological order):
Carter, Inventionof Printing,pp. 74, 83; Goodrich, "The Development of Printing in China
and its Effect on the Renaissance under the Sung Dynasty (960-1279)," Journalof theAsiatic
Society,Hong Kong Branch3 (1963): 42; Fumoto Yasutaka, Jugaku no tendai, p. 19; Elman,
FromPhilosophyto Philology,pp. 140-42; Ira E. Kasoff, The Thoughtof ChangTsai (1020-1077)
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984), pp. 4-5; John W. Chaffee, The ThornyGates
of Learningin Sung China:A SocialHistoryof Examinations(Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1985), p. 14; Thomas H. C. Lee, Government Educationand Examinationsin Sung China
(Hong Kong: Chinese University Press, and New York: St. Martin's, 1985), pp. 28-30;
Tsien, Paper,pp. 377-82; Van Zoeren, PoetryandPersonalitypp. 156-57; Bol, "This Cultureof
Ours," pp. 152-53.
and other cultural enrichments; but, by contrast, printing re-
inforced the traditional bookishness of Chinese culture without
leading to intellectual unrest as in the West, serving instead as an
important vehicle for perpetuating cultural orthodoxies, enforcing
cultural and social coherence, and asserting government control
over canonical texts used in the civil service examinations.56
In broad balance Tsien's generalizations may be true, but the
Sung dynasty presents a more complex picture, with printing serv-
ing apparently contradictory functions, both perpetuating and trans-
forming traditional orthodoxies, enforcing cultural conformity and
strengthening regional identities, and supporting government con-
trol over canonical texts while undermining that control. Recent
studies have drawn attention to some of these phenomena. Think-
ing of Western analogies, Thomas H. C. Lee links the spread of
printing to increased awareness of the "possible diversity of ideas"
among a growing literate public, and increased expression of
"extreme or even radical ideas."57 Also, Stephen Jay Van Zoeren
relates printing to the development of an "independent critical
spirit" in classical exegesis, fostered by deeply personal, devotional
readings of texts which were made available through printing.58
However we may choose to account for these developments, it is
clear that printing should not be treated as a neutral medium for
transmitting texts that might have been transmitted more slowly,
more expensively, or less widely, by other means. There is good evi-
dence to suggest that the spread of printing transformed Chinese
book culture, changing the way people read books, how they felt

56 See Tsien, Paper,pp. 367-69, 377-83, and [Ch'ien Ts'un-hsiin 0#11J] "Yin-shua shu

tsai Chung-kuo ch'uan-t'ung wen-hua chung-te kung-neng" a

P, in Chung-kuo shu-chi, chih-mo chiyin-shua shih lun-wen chi @- $;g 9*FFi Q_1P_WC*
(Hong Kong: Chinese University Press, 1992), pp. 231-40. Tsien concurs with an earlier
opinion of Joseph Needham that printing in China did not have destabilizing effects as it did
in the West; see Needham, "Science and China's Influence in the World," in TheLegacyof
China,ed. Raymond Dawson (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1964), p. 245 n. 2; Chaffee
follows this view; ThornyGates,p. 14. Lee says that printing had an enormous impact on
Chinese society, although the speed and magnitude were not comparable to the Gutenberg
revolution; GovernmentEducation,p. 30. Other writers (see n. 55) cite various cultural enrich-
ments due to the increased supply of books.
57 Government Education,pp. 28-29.
58 PoetryandPersonality,
pp. 156-57. Henderson also relates printing to challenges to tradi-
tional commentarial assumptions; see Scripture,pp. 201-2.
about books, how they used them, edited them, and wrote them. Re-
cent studies of Sung printing and book culture by Ming-sun Poon
and Jean-Pierre Drege have linked the spread of printing to such de-
velopments as speed-reading, competition in prolixity among
writers, increased concerns over textual accuracy, bibliomania,
and, paradoxically, the vulgarization of books.59 Stuart H. Sargent
has also recently suggested that printing may have influenced the de-
velopment of the Sung song lyric (tz'u j1).60Much more research is
needed on the entire subject. In studies of the impact of printing on
Western book culture, Elizabeth L. Eisenstein and others have
shown that printing can effect a revolution in communications
with far-reaching and unexpectedly complex consequences.6" While
analogies to the Western experience must be drawn with caution,
the possibility that printing in China fostered comparable changes
should be borne in mind, especially when considering characteris-
tics of textual transmission, where a shift in media may be expected
to produce a direct impact.

59 See Poon, "Books," pp. 68-71, and [P'an Ming-shen XMAJ "Sung-tai ssu-chia
ts'ang-shu k'ao" , Hua-kuo* 6 (1971): 237-40; also Jean-Pierre Drege,
"La lecture et l'ecriture en Chine et la xylographie," Etudeschinoises10.1-2 (1991): 101-3.
60 See "Contexts of the Song Lyric in Sung Times: Communication Technology; Social
Change; Morality," in Voicesof theSongLyricin China,ed. Pauline Yu (University of Califor-
nia Press, forthcoming).
61 See Eisenstein, ThePrintingPressas anAgentof Change: Communications andCulturalTransfor-
mationsin Early ModernEurope, 2 vols. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979).
Other influential studies include Lucien Febvre and Henri-Jean Martin, L'Apparitiondu livre
(Paris: A. Michel, 1958), translated by David Gerard as TheComingof theBook: TheImpactof
Printing, 1450-1800, ed. Geoffrey Nowell-Smith and David Wootton (London: N.L.B.,
1976); and Walter J. Ong, Oralityand Literacy: The Technologizingof the Word(London:
Methuen, 1982). For reviews of scholarship on Western print-culture, see Eisenstein, pp. 3-
42; G. Thomas Tanselle, "From Bibliography to Histoiretotale:The History of Books as a
Field of Study," TimesLiterarySupplement,5 June 1981: 647-49; Robert Darnton, "What is
the History of Books?" Daedalus(Summer 1982): 65-85; and the annotated bibliography ap-
pended to Eisenstein's one-volume abridgement, ThePrintingRevolutionin EarlyModernEurope
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983). Since then, two noteworthy French studies
have been translated into English by Lydia G. Cochrane: collected essays by Roger Chartier,
TheCulturalUsesof Printin EarlyModernFrance(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1987);
and Les Usagesde lVimprime (XVe-XIXesiecle)(Paris: Fayard, 1987) as TheCultureof Print:Power
andtheUsesof Printin EarlyModernEurope(conference papers), ed. Chartier (Princeton: Prince-
ton University Press, 1989). See, in particular, his "General Introduction: Print Culture,"
pp. 1-10. Chartier is under the impression that printing remained a government monopoly in
The adventof print culture. Following a long period of development
under Buddhist patronage that started no later than the seventh cen-
tury,'2 printing flowered in the Sung, fundamentally changing the
conditions of textual transmission that had shaped earlier book cul-
ture. As in the West some centuries later, printing had the effect of
degrading the authority of pre-print manuscript texts and eventual-
ly sending most of them into oblivion. The losses were gradual, the
rate of penetration of imprints varying with the nature of the materi-
als.63 The true impact, however, cannot be gauged by counting the

The date is speculative. There is little certainty about when printing begins in China.
Good accounts of competing theories and evidence are provided in two works by Chang
Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shua shih F JF$JWIJt (Shanghai: Jen-min ch'u-pan-she, 1989), pp.
27-70, and ChangHsiu-minyin-shuashih lun-wen-chiI M gAD (Peking: Yin-shua
kung-yeh ch'u-pan-she, 1988), pp. 32-50; see also Tsien, Paper,pp. 146-51. Leaving aside
reports in later texts, a pre-eighth-century origin seems certain on the basis of the earliest ex-
tant printed document, a dhirane(Buddhist spell), discovered in 1966 in the Sokka Stupa ZE
at Pulkuk-sa Temple 1 in Kyongju, South Korea. The text was engraved no later
than 751, assuming that the stupa was sealed the same year the temple was erected, and no
earlier than 704, judging from the occurrence in the text of characters first promulgated by
Empress Wu : in 695-705. As Jean-Pierre Drege points out, since such charactersremained
in use through the Five Dynasties, the putative date of the text rests on the credibility of the as-
sumption about the date of stupa's sealing and the stupa's continued structural integrity; see
"Les characteresde l'imperatrice Wu Zetian," BEFEO 73 (1984): 352-54; also Tsien, Paper,
pp. 149-50; Twitchett, Printing,pp. 13-14, 88 n. 2. But even earlier origins for printing are
suggested by stelae dating from the Northern and Southern Dynasties (fifth-sixth centuries),
which display inscriptions that have been carved in relief, and in some cases also carved in
reverse (mirror-image), exactly as they are in wood-block engraving; the latter were intended
to be reproduced by rubbings. The significance of these inscriptions for printing history is dis-
cussed in Li Shu-hua, "The Early Development of Seals and Rubbings," CHHP, n.s., 1.3
(Sept. 1958): 81-84; also Tsien, Paper,pp. 141-42. For further bibliography on print history,
consult Tsien, Paper,pp. 389-450, supplemented and updated in [Ch'ien,] "Chung-kuo yin-
shua shih chien-mu" r: 5JgIJ4fE, Kuo-li Chung-yangt'u-shu-kuankuan-k'anfflAtri-Afl
94fiRMMT4I, n.s., 23.1 (June 1990): 179-199, reprinted in Chung-kuoshu-chilun-wenchi, pp.
296-326. An important addition to Tsien's bibliography is Li Chih-chung t Li-tai k'o-
shukao-shu LfNAMIMAn (Chengtu: Pa Shu shu-she, 1989), offering revisions of the author's
previously published articles and new studies on T'ang-to-Ch'ing print history.
63 Drege says that the rate of penetration of imprints varied according to the type of collec-

tion, with Buddhist libraries being affected earliest and most rapidly, and the general prefer-
ence for imprints over manuscripts being established in the Ming; Les Bibliotheques en Chineau
tempsdesmanuscrits (jusqu au XIsiecle),Publications de l'Ecole francaise d'Extreme-Orient, no.
161 (Paris: Ecole francaise d'Extreme-Orient, 1991), pp. 266-68. However, Erik Zurcher
contends on the basis of the scarcity of imprints in the Tun-huang collection, sealed ca. 1035,
that printing played a marginal role in the production and spread of Buddhist texts up to that
time; "Buddhism and Education in T'ang Times," Neo-Confucian Education:The Formative
Phase,ed. Wm. Theodore de Bary and John W. Chaffee (Berkeley and Los Angeles: Univer-
number of print books in circulation relative to manuscript books.
Although Sung printers were prolific, the majority of books in Sung
imperial and private libraries were still manuscripts.64 But print
books exerted an influence disproportionate to their numbers. Over
time, the popular preference for print and the better survival rates

sity of California Press, 1989), pp. 54-55. Yet the real influence of printing on the dissemina-
tion of Buddhist texts may be masked by the less obvious role of imprints as standards for tran-
scription. Stephen F. Teiser has documented one example: "A true printed copy of the Kuo
9 family of Hsi-ch'uan MII [in Szechwan]" served as a master copy for the production of
many transcriptionsof the DiamondSutrain at least one Tun-huang scriptorium; see "Hymns
for the Dead in the Age of the Manuscript, " TheGestLibrary Journal5.1 (Spring 1992): 41-42,
53-52 nn. 27-30, and Chapter 2, Section 3: "Production of the Scripture: Booklets," in 'The
Scripture on the TenKings' andtheMakingof Purgatoryin MedievalChineseBuddhism(University of
Hawaii Press, forthcoming).
64 According to John H. Winkelman's figures for the holdings catalogued by the Southern
Sung Imperial Archives (Pi-ko), imprints amounted to only 8 percent of the book collection
(6,098 chiuanin 1,721 ts'e ), out of an estimated 72,567 chiianin 21,359 ts'e); "The Imperial
Library in Southern Sung China, 1127-1279," Transactions of theAmerican PhilosophicalSociety,
n.s., 64.8 (1974): 33-35. The figures are drawn from Ch'en K'uei N (1128-1203), comp.,
Nan Sungkuan-kolu XA*#PJ- (1178) (recollected from Yung-lota-tien[completed 1408]; Wu-
lin chang-kuts'ung-pienedition, 1886), "Chu-ts'ang": "Pi-ko chu-k'u shu-mu," 3.3a-b, also
quoted in YH, "I-wen," 52.43a-b. Winkelman (pp. 34-35) further notes that the imprints
were housed apart from the main collection which contained only manuscripts-an indica-
tion that imprints were held in less esteem; on the disposition of imprints, see Nan Sungkuan-
ko lu, "Sheng-she," 2.4b.
According to Poon; manuscripts continued to predominate in great Sung private collec-
tions because imprints constituted only a fraction of total book production and were less
valued by bibliophiles because they were often badly collated. Also, collation itself often result-
ed in multiple manuscript copies (a duplicate [fu-pen "N*] working copy might be tran-
scribed before collation, and a corrected copy afterwards), rare books could be obtained only
by transcription (often, of borrowed copies-collectors often exchanged books for this pur-
pose), and transcription itself was preferred as a means of gaining familiarity with a text; see
[P'an,] "Ssu-chia ts'ang-shu k'ao," pp. 215-18; also Shu-linch'ing-hua,"Shu-chieh ch'ao-
pen chih shih," 2.30-31.
A possible exception concerns the bibliophile PrinceJung VE (Chao Tsung-ch'o c
1034-96). One volume of the catalogue for his collection of about 70,000 chuanis said to have
itemized 22,836 chiuanof manuscript books and imprints, in addition to Directorate imprints
which were listed in another volume; see Hung Mai,Jung-chaissu-piV*N* 13.8a, inJung-
chaisui-pi wu-chifi K (SPTK edition, 2d ser.). The figure of 70,000 chuianis also given in
Kao Ssu-sun , (1160-1220), comp., Shih-lieh-JI3 (Ku-i ts'ung-shuedition, 1883), "Pen
ch'ao," 5.15b-16a. The Ming biliblophile Hu Ying-lin Mfig (1551-1602) thought that the
figure was greatly exaggerated even allowing for duplicates, since the size of the imperial libra-
ry was then about 40,000 chiian,and imprints were not yet plentiful; see Shao-shihshan-fangpi-
ts'ung'VINAX**, in Shao-shihshan-fangchi - (Kuang-ya[shu-chi]ts'ung-shuedition, 1896),
for print editions generated in multiple copies, have produced the
result that most pre-Sung and Sung works survive today only in the
form of Sung imprints and later copies and revisions of them. As
Joseph Needham once remarked, after the invention of paper and
the introduction of printing, "practically everything in Chinese is
either printed or lost," though printing, of course, did not guaran-
tee survival.65
Sung intellectuals were aware of the permanent consequences of
the loss of manuscripts, as evinced by an early warning sounded in a
memorial of 1034, requesting permission to revise the prior Direc-
torate imprints of the ThreeHistories (the Shih-chi of Ssu-ma Ch'ien,
the Han shu of Pan Ku, and the Hou Han shu of Fan Yeh M1 [398-
446]). These had first been engraved some forty years earlier, and
had already been corrected once before, in the Hsien-p'ing (998-
1004) and Ching-te (1004-8) periods. Now a second revision was
needed, it was argued, because the very success of the printed
versions had doomed alternative versions that might have been con-
sulted to check their accuracy:
Earlier dynasties transmitted the Classics and Histories by transcribing them on
paper and silk. Even though errors were made, still, the versions could be com-
pared and collated. Then in the Five Dynasties, officials began to use inked-[wood]-
blocks to print the Six Classics, prompted by a sincere desire to make the texts
uniform so that scholars would not be misled. During the reign of T'ai-tsung (r.
976-97), the Histories of Ssu-ma Ch'ien, Pan Ku, and Fan Yeh were also printed.
With this, the manuscript versions of the Histories and Six Classics that had been
transmitted down to that time were no longer used. Yet the inked-blocks were rid-
dled with errors. They were never correct (zheng IE) to begin with, but later schol-
ars will not be able to turn to other versions to discover and rectify the mistakes in

65 "The Unity of Science; Asia's Indispensable Contribution" (1948), in Clerksand

Craftsmenin Chinaand the West(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1970), p. 24. Hu

Ying-lin comes to the same conclusion, comparing the survival rates of works before and after
the spread of printing; Shao-shihshan-fangpi-ts'ung 1.17a.
66 Ch'eng Chu Wff (1078-1144), comp., Lin-t'ai ku-shihM*& (completed 1131) (Shih-
wan-chiuan lou ts'ung-shuedition, 2d ser., 1892), "Chiao-ch'ou," 2.14b, quoted in Chien-pen
k'ao 2.53. Note that this edition is punctuated and annotated by Yao Po-yueh -*FM& in
Chung-kuoli-shih ts'ang-shu lun-chutu-pen F ed. Hsii Yen rfJ1f and
Wang Yen-chun T]nij (Chengtu: Ssu-ch'uan ta-hsiieh ch'u-pan-she, 1990), pp. 98-155.
The same memorial is found in Li T'ao - (1115-84), comp., Hszi Tzu-chiht'ung-chien
ch'ang-pieni A2FbM (1183) (Che-chiangshu-chiiedition, 1881; facsimile reprint with
As this statement suggests, it was the presumed superiority of im-
prints to manuscripts in the minds of Sung readers that eventually
allowed print texts to overwhelm long-standing manuscript tradi-
tions, guaranteeing that flawed imprints would not be effectively
countered by manuscripts.67 Concerns about this echo through later
Sung textual criticism, as intellectuals find themselves confronting a
much changed transmission environment.
The prestige of printing had been established at the outset of the
Sung dynasty, when the imperial government committed itself to
large-scale projects to produce revised editions of the Confucian clas-
sics and commentaries, classical dictionaries, new compendia on
literature, law, medicine, and political institutions, new editions of
the dynastic histories, starting with the ThreeHistories, and the first
printing of the entire Buddhist canon, the Tripitaka.68Many were
complex undertakings involving years of editing and production
work. The number of projects authorized by reigning emperors in-
creased from five under T'ai-tsu (r. 960-76) and six under T'ai-
tsung, to thirty-five under Chen-tsung A' (r. 998-1022), and
thirty-nine additional projects under Jen-tsung f:' (r. 1023-64),

supplements from Yung-lota-tienand Hsu Tzu-chiht'ung-chienshih-pu,Taipei: Shih-chieh shu-

chu, 1961; reprint, 1974), 117.1Oa (Ching-yu/9/jen-ch'en),quoted in Ching-ik'ao 293.6a; also
YH: "I-wen, "K'an-cheng Ssu-ching,"43. 19a.
The author of this statement is not clear from the context. Lin-t'ai ku-shihattributes it to an
unnamed advocate. This may be Chang Kuan k (Hanlin Scholar) or Yii Ching +,I
(1000-64, Assistant Director of the Palace Library), who are both associated with this project;
see nn. 160-62.
67 A good example is Ch'ao Kung-wu's X9WA (d. 1171) criticism that errors in the Five
Dynasties Directorate imprint of the Classics,reprinted at the beginning of the Sung as the
standard text, had driven independent manuscript versions out of circulation, making the col-
lation of errors difficult. Ch'ao further claimed that, even though everyone recognized that
the officialtexts were flawed, individual scholarslacked the means to rectify them. Ch'ao com-
pared the imprint with the texts o'fthe Shu stone classics in Ch'eng-tu, had the corrections en-
graved on stelae, and placed thesh beside the classics in I170; see "Shih-chingk'ao-ihsi" MI
*TV, quoted in YH, "I-wen": "T'ang shih-ching,Hou T'ang Chiu-ching k'o-pan,"
43.10a; Chien-penk'ao2.14-15; Ching-ik'ao293.5a. This projectis discussedin Pelliot,Les
Debuts,p. 59.
68 The K'ai-paotsang fi edition(971-83), 130,000blocks,engravedin Ch'eng-tu(I-
chou1'Y', after994)underimperialsupervisionthenshippedto K'ai-feng;see Chih-p'an*&
B (1220-75), comp., "Fa-yiint'ung-se chih" i Fo tsu t'ung-chif4 R3, in
Taishoshinshui ;IFEVfi;JR,, ed. TakakusuJunjir6 MAgJIMkM
daizokyo and Watanabe
KaikyokuO&S)LB (Taish6issaiky6kankokai,1924-32), no. 2035, 49: 43.396a, 43.398c.
This editionwasboundin book-rolls,composedof printedsheetsof papergluedend-to-end.
the subject areas gradually expanding to include selected Taoist
classics, reference works on agriculture, astronomy, geomancy,
and works of general knowledge.69 The Directorate of Education,
which remained the dominant printing agency of the Sung central
government, was responsible for printing and distributing most
of the works."
As the close correspondence between Directorate imprints and
government examination fields indicates, one of the main purposes
in the early decades was to provide standard texts for use in the ex-
amination system. Printing made real standardization achievable
for the first time, inasmuch as uniformity was nearly impossible in
repeatedly transcribed manuscripts. The imprints included works
required for the top degree, the chin-shih, and all eight of the differ-
ent specialty degrees (chu-k'o X"4) in classics, ritual, history, and
law; the series was completed in 1029 with the printing of the law
texts.7" The imprints were embraced as chen-pen At, the "true
texts," rapidly supplanting the alternatives.72
A second purpose of the early Sung publishing program was to
make useful reference works available to court officials in the easily
consultable, bound-page book format utilized in printing.73 Paged

69 Based on Poon, "Books," pp. 117-20. I have included the Tripitakaimprint under the

count for T'ai-tsung.

For details of the role of the Directorate in central government printing, see Poon,
"Books," pp. 87-92, 113-17; Flug, "Chinese Book Publishing," pp. 32-37. Other respon-
sibilities of the Directorate are described in Lee, Government Education,pp. 58-62.
71 This, according to the list of imprints in Poon, "Books," pp. 117-20, and the account of

degree fields given in WHTK: "Hsiian-chii" j 3, 30.283b. For a standard discussion of

degree fields, see Chin Chung-shu fiV, "Pei Sung k'o-chii chih-tu yen-chiu" |t95k#$IJ
)J[3, HYHP 6.1 (1964): 211-26; and see translations of examination listings in E. A.
Kracke, Jr., Civil Servicein Early Sung China, 960-1067, Harvard-Yenching Monograph
Series, no. 13 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1953), pp. 61-63; also Lee, Government
Education,pp. 143-45. Although no record survives of the printing of the examination texts
for one field in ritual-the T'ang K'ai-yuianli MT (732) and the K'ai-paot'ung-li
(973) which replaced it-a memorial of 1026 requesting permission to print the law texts
states that, among texts required for specialty fields, these alone remained unprinted. They
were completed in 1029 and engraved by the Academy for the Veneration of Literature
(Ch'ung-wen yuan); Sunghui-yao5k*, see Sunghui-yaochi-kao*A, comp. Hsii Sung nz
(recollected from Yung-lota-tien,1936; facsimile reprint, 8 vols., Peking: Chung-hua shu-chui,
1966) [hereafter SHY]: "Ch'ung-ju" - , ts'e 55, 4.6b-7a (T'ien-sheng 4/11).
72 SHY: "Ch'ung-ju", ts'e 55, 4.6b (T'ien-sheng 4/11).
73 Note that Flug links printing to the development of "reference materials permitting an-
books were not new. They had developed in the T'ang dynasty
(618-907). Indian Buddhist books made from the leaves of the
talipot palm are thought to have provided the inspiration for the new
flat-leaf format, as an alternative to the traditional scroll or book-
roll (chiian i). Central Asian influence is also likely, though not
generally recognized. A pottery figure dated to the late Sui-early
T'ang period (late sixth century-early seventh century) of a seated
woman with Tocharian features holding a small, Western-looking,
bound-page book in her hand suggests that the bound-page format
was known long before it was popularized in the ninth century for
manuscript-books and then adapted for print-books in the tenth.74
During the T'ang and Five Dynasties, books circulated in differ-
ent flat-leaf formats. In the Sung, the preferred format for print
books and also for those manuscript books not bound in book-rolls
was the "glued-leaf" (nien-yeh MV) or "butterfly" format.75 The

alytical and mechanical access to sources rather than learning by rote; "Chinese Book Pub-
lishing," p. 81. Ou-yang Hsiu associates the earlier, T'ang development of a flat-leaf format
called yeh-tzuko - - g with works intended for ready reference, and notes that book-rolls
were difficult to roll and unroll; see Kuei-t'ienlu XINE[B2, Ou-yangkungchi 127.12b. Another
genre well suited to the codex format was the notebook, or miscellany (pi-chi i3 and shih-
huaj,). Such works lent themselves to intermittent reading. They were first popularized in
the Sung.
74 See SeatedLady,in Robert L. Thorp and Virginia Bower, SpiritandRitual: TheMoreCollec-
tionof AncientChineseArt by (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1982), p. 55, pl. 29.
One of the popular forms of Central Asian books was the codex with folded leaves bound
together on one side; the books were made in folio, quarto, and small sizes; see Emil Esin,
"Central Asia," in TheBook ThroughFive ThousandYears,ed. Hendrik D. L. Virvliet (Lon-
don: Phaidon, 1972), p. 84. This may well be the type of book represented here.
75 Butterfly and book-roll formats were used in both private and imperial libraries: in one
eleventh-century album leaf, both types are shown among books piled on a table behind a seat-
ed woman; see Kojiro Tomita, Museumof FineArts, Boston:Portfolioof ChinesePaintingsin the
Museum(Han to SungPeriods),2d ed. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1938), pl. 39:
Womanin a Pavilionand ChildrenPlayingby a LotusPondPMRIM. The same mix is seen in
Scholarsof theLiu-li Hall (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), a thirteenth-century copy
of a handscroll by Chou Wen-chii MUM (fl. 940-75), said to represent a gathering of the
T'ang poet Wang Ch'ang-ling I3E (d. ca. 756) and his friends. Here, a seated scholar in
the center of the scroll is shown reading a butterfly book, while two scholars on the far left
hold an open scroll; see Wen Fong and Maxwell K Hearn, "Silent Poetry: Chinese Paintings
in the Douglas Dillon Galleries," TheMetropolitan Museumof Art Bulletin,39.3 (winter 1981-
82): 22-23, fig. 12, and the enlargement of the detail on the inside back cover; also Wen C.
Fong, BeyondRepresentation: ChineseCalligraphyand Painting, 8th-14th Century(New York:
Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1992), pp. 39-41, pl. 6.
Even though both formats were popular, the butterfly codex was nevertheless appreciated
"butterfly binding" (hu-tieh chuangNkM) favored by Sung printers

as the "modern" form for books. Thus, the artist of an eleventh-century handscroll portray-
ing Chen-ts'ung 1007 visit to the T'ai-ch'ing lou tiIT (the imperial family library, located
in the rear palace garden)-the occasion for a rare opening of the library to invited
guests-chooses to show butterfly books only being held up for inspection by attendants and
being read by the visitors, though the collection is known to have included many rolls. This
may be a tribute to Chen-tsung's patronage of library-expansion, compilation, and printing
projects; see Fong, BeyondRepresentation, p. 175, fig. 75: "Emperor Chen-tsung Viewing
Books at the Great Purity Pavilion" ti%cI , a detail from FourScenes from theChing-teReign
5,&wAf.tqERUM, no. 4 (National Palace Museum, Taipei). (Fong's comment that, on this occa-
sion, "Chen-tsung celebrated the completion of a new encyclopedia [totaling 24,192
volumes!]" is puzzling, since no early Sung encyclopedia exceded 1,000 chiuan,and the total
number of books in the T'ai-ch'ing lou library was then 33,725 chiuan.The latter figure is
recorded in the account of Chen-tsung's visit in Hsu ch'ang-pien65.5a-b [Ching-te 4/3/chi-
Wang Chu praised glued-leaf books for their durability and persuaded Sung Shou to con-
vert his collection to this format; see Chang Pang-chi 4X (d. after 1150), Mo-chuangman-lu
g (completed 1144) (SPTK edition, 3d ser.), 4.19a, quoted in Shu-linyii-hua 1.7.
Chang Pang-chi also reports seeing yellow-paper and white-paper editions (po-pen 04,
huang-penIA*) from the Northern Sung collections of the Three Institutes (San-kuan), all of
which had glued leaves; ibid., 4.19a. This report is confirmed in the Ming by Chang Hsuan
WN (1558-1641), who says that all of the Sung editions in the Imperial Archives were but-
terfly books; Iyiieh R (Ling-nan i-shu, 2d ser., 1845; facsimile reprint in Ts'ung-shu chi-
ch'eng), 5.104. By Chang's time, butterfly binding had become a curiosity, having been
replaced by the stitched-binding style (hsien-chuang OR).
Various theories have been proposed relating the development of butterfly binding to other
T'ang and Five Dynasties flat-leaf book formats, including loose leaves, accordion-style
folded-leaf formats used for Buddhist sutras, and books made of folded leaves either sewn
or glued together. The last type is a likely precursor to butterfly binding, and Tun-huang ex-
amples are sometimes cited as butterfly books. A good example is Han ba-nienCh'umiehHan
hsing WangLing pien fflAq-fiVfi%fi<PRN (ten leaves, dated 939), P[elliot].3627a, 3867,
and 2627b; reassembled as S[tein].5437. One of the earliest examples, dating from the second
half of the eighth century is S.5478; see Ishizuka Harumichi ESfrA, "Roran, Tonko no
katenbon" WM-#M6;bn%*, BokubiM. 201 (1970): 34, pl. 27. For a detailed discus-
sion of this format, see Jean-Pierre Drege, "Les Cahiers des manuscrits de Touen-houang,"
in Contributions aux etudes sur Touen-houang, ed. Michel Soymie, Centre des Recherches
d'Histoire et de Philologie de la IVe Section de l'Ecole pratique des Hautes Etudes, II,
Hautes Etudes Orientales, no. 10 (Geneva: Librarie Droz, 1979), pp. 17-28. For discussions
of the development of butterfly books and their characteristics, see Tsien, Paper, pp.
227-31; Poon, "Books," pp. 187-204, which includes an examination of the standard for-
mat description given in Shu-linyui-hua 1.27-28; Edward Martinique, Chinese Traditional Book-
binding(Taipei: Chinese Materials Center, 1983), pp. 15-37; and additional references in
Drege, "Les Cahiers," p. 17 n. 2. Clear reproductions of full leaves from Sung butterfly
books are displayed in Chung-kuopan-k'ot'u-lu JPMWAIEi, comp. Pei-ching t'u-shu-kuan
;|tXp1X?, 8 vols. (Peking: Wen-wu ch'u-pan-she, 1961), 1-2: pl. 50-55, 97, 104-106,
110-111, 141; and in the exhibition catalog by Soren Edgren, ChineseRareBooksin American
Collections(New York: China Institute in America, 1984), p. 64, pi. 1Oa;p. 66, pl. lIa.
yielded durable, stiff-cover books that opened to the touch: the
leaves were folded down the middle and piled together, with the
print-side facing up, and then glued together at the center fold, and
to the spine, so that the pages opened like butterfly wings when the
covers were spread apart. This format made it possible to flip
through a book quickly to find a passage,76 to read a book in any
order,77 to view different pages simultaneously (by bending back
leaves), and to save a reference with a bookmark,78 operations im-
possible with book-rolls. In addition, butterfly books usually offered
practical reference features. A table of contents listed chapters
(chiian A) by numbers. The chapter number was recorded on every
leaf, together with the leaf number for that chapter, in the center
column that straddled the fold-line on the leaf. The chapter number
was sometimes also repeated in a thumb-index located at the upper
corner of the page.79 These innovations made it convenient both to

Flipping is encouraged by the format. One of the distinctive experiences in reading but-
terfly books is that the reader is presented with both halves of the printed leaf at once, since
the leaves are bound print-side facing up. In turning the leaf, one encounters a pair of blank
pages (the reverse sides of the printed leaves that precede and follow). Blank pages alternate
with printed pages; see the facsimile reprint of a fragment of a butterfly-book, Wen-yuianying-
hua ; Hsiang-kang Chung-wen ta-hsuieh t'u-shu-kuan ts'ung-shu, no. 2 (Hong
Kong: Chinese University of Hong Kong, 1974). The facsimile reproduces one ts'e of the
original imprint (engraved 1201-04; bound 1260), comprising chkian201-10. On this work,
see nn. 186-89.
77 Thus Ssu-ma Kuang complains that his contemporaries have developed the habit of skip-

ping around in books, rarely reading them through from the first chiianto the last; see Chang
Lei 3 (1054-1114, or 1052-1112), Ming-tao tsa-chih P (Hsuieh-hailei-pienedition,
chi-yui,4th ser.), 14a.
78 Thus Chao Meng-fu W& (1254-1322) includes bending, dog-earing leaves, and in-
serting objects into books in his list of forbidden book abuses, together with such offenses as
clawing at the leaf or dribbling saliva on the fingertip to turn pages, and using a book as a pil-
low; see colophon recorded in Ch'en Chi-ju Wffi (1558-1639), "Tu-shu shih-liu-kuan" a
*:I+ (Shuofu [hsii ssu-shih-liu-chuian]edition, 32d ser., 1646), 4b-5a; quoted in Yeh
Ch'ang-ch'ih R (1847-1917), Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih jglFU (preface 1891) (1920;
reprint Shang-hai: Ku-tien wen-hsuiehch'u-pan-she, 1958), 2.60. Yeh's work provides much
valuable information on traditional book-culture, presented in the form of annotations to
quatrains devoted to leading bibliophiles and various topics in book history. It has inspired
many sequels and supplements. For bibliographic details, see HsuiYen's entries in Ts'ung-shu
lun-chutu-pen,pp. 39-43.
79 These thumb-indexes are called "book-ears" (shu-erh ;, erh-t'i 4;ffi, erh-tzuM;,);
see diagram in Edgren, ChineseRareBooks,p. 15, fig. 1. An illustration is given in Ma Heng
MIM,"Chung-kuo shu-chi chih-tu pien-ch'ien chih yen-chiu" 9g %I -

T'u-shu-kuanhsuiehchi-k'anW-4MW*:PJ 1.2 (June 1926): pl. 7 (Ch'un-ch'iuTso chuan).The


use a book without first memorizing the order of chapters and to lo-
cate a reference efficiently. The simple transfer of existing works
from book-roll to codex, which had been in progress since the ninth
century and was then speeded up by printing, served to shrink down
to portable sizes works that formerly might have occupied dozens
or hundreds of scrolls. This physical condensation made the job
of managing and storing books much easier.
Acquiring government imprints, however, was not an easy mat-
ter in the early Sung. A few editions were restricted to palace use, or
printed in limited quantities to be distributed as gifts to favored offi-
cials, imperial relatives, or foreign governments. Most editions
were made available to local governments, government and private
academies, and individuals, but only at hefty prices that covered
costs for materials and labor, and a profit.80These imprints included

same feature may be seen on leaves in ts'e 1 of the PNPS edition of Ou-yang Hsiu's Wu-tai
shih-chiA{KS"i, a Yuian recut of a mid-Southern Sung imprint from Chien-yang ,
80 Several sources report the acquisition of early Directorate imprints by application and

payment of "paper and ink" charges. The K'ai-yiian Temple in Wu-chou sent a delegation
to the capital in 995 with money for "paper and ink" (ch'u-mo*i) to order a copy of the
Tripitaka,which was installed in their new Tripitaka Library building; Yang I ;Of (974-
1020), "Wu-chou K'ai-yiian ssu hsin chien Ta-tsangchinglou chi" l6f C
5d (dated Jan. 1006), in Wu-i hsin-chiA.W* (P'u-ch'engi-shuedition, 1811), 6.15a. A dis-
patch note (tieh-wenW-3;l;)dated 986, appended to the Directorate imprint of Shuo-wenchieh-
tzu, ed. Hsui Hsiian #, (916-91) et al., grants permission "to allow persons to remit money
for costs of paper and ink to purchase them, as in the case of the Nine Classics"(LS?fJS
AMfk~J&M ); Shu-linch'ing-hua,"Fan-pan yu li-chin shih yii Sung-jen," 2.38; Chien-
penk'ao2.39. An edict of Dec. 1007 authorizes the imprint of the Ch'ieh-yuin dictionary to
be sold in the same way, YH: "I-wen," "Ching-te chiao-ting Ch'ieh-yiin,"45.24a (Ching-te
4/1 1Iwu-yin);Sungta chao-lingchi *A;,2'p. (comp. Shao-hsing period; Peking: Chung-hua
shu-chui, 1962), "Ching-shih wen-chi," 150.556.
Although the phrase "paper and ink" has been interpreted literally, it is probably a euphe-
mism for charges covering not only the costs of paper (for printing and binding) and ink, but
also labor, and even block rental (lin-panA&, a royalty charged to recoup engraving costs),
since such charges are noted on other Northern and Southern Sung central government
agency and local government imprints, cited in Shu-linch'ing-hua,"Sung chien-pen hsiujen
tzu-yin ping ting-chia ch'u-shou," 6.143-45. This is confirmed by a dispatch note of 1088
quoted in the preface to the small-character Directorate edition of the medical book, Shang-
han lun 16; . The note authorizes small-character reprints of this and other voluminous
medical books that had been first printed by the Directorate in 1065; this, in response to a Di-
rectorate petition claiming that "due to the bulk and large number of volumes, the cost of
ink and paper is high, and people have difficultybuying them. " The note states that the small-
character editions should be priced to reflect "costs for paper, labor, and ink only. Let peo-
Directorate editions of the Confucian classics, which were at first
not distributed systematically. They were available only by applica-
tion and payment of charges to the Directorate in Pien-ching 1tA(
(K'ai-feng). An edict of 998 forbade private reprints elsewhere.8"
It was not until 1012 that copies of Directorate classics, in un-
known quantities, began to be shipped to circuit governments for
regional sale.82 Yet price remained an obstacle for many would-be
buyers. The books were costly for several reasons. The deluxe "large-
character" (ta-tzu )k4) format utilized for Directorate imprints

ple submit requests for purchase and also send them to the circuits to be sold." It further
stipulates that the profit requested by the Directorate should be limited to ten percent; see
in Cheng Wu-chi )1ifi (ca. 1064-after 1156), comp., Chu-chiehShang-hanlun tg (SPTK
edition, 1st ser.), "Chin-ch'eng," la-2a; excerpted in Chien-penk'ao 2.87-88. Also to reduce
costs, especially in 1096, T'ai-p'ing sheng-huifangand other medical books were reprinted
in less expensive small-character editions. Ten copies were sent to Defense Commands
[chieh-chen],and five to prefectures for sales to local doctors; Shu-linch'ing-hua,"Fan-pan yu
li-chin shih yii Sung-jen," 2.39-40, and "Sung-chien ch'ung-k'o i-shu," 6.148; Chien-pen
k'ao 2.94. In the Southern Sung Shao-hsing period, court officials were asked to contribute
toward the "costs of ink and paper" for new Directorate editions of the classical subcommen-
taries and Lu Te-ming's RNM (556-627) Ching-tienshih-wenV^ft.. Here, "chih-mo
ch'ien" g- seems to refer to production costs; see Li Hsin-ch'uan 2'fZJ1# (1166-1243),
comp., Chien-yeh i-lai ch'ao-yentsa-chi*AU;*Vff*2 (ser. 1, completed 1202; ser. 2, 1212)
(Shih-yuants'ung-shuedition, 5th ser., 1914), ser. 1, "Chih-tso": "Chien-pen shu-chi"
4.9b-lOa; cf. variant versions in the Wu-Yingtienchui-chen pan shu edition, 4. 1Oa-b; Chien-pen
k'ao 3.128-29; Ching-ik'ao 293.5b.
8 SHY: "Chih-kuan" 9, ts'e 75, 28.lb (Chih-tao 3/12).
82 Ibid., 28.2a (Hsiang-fu 5/9). Other Directorate imprints were later sold in this way; see

n. 80 on medical books. Print-runs for Sung woodblocks cannot be calculated with any accura-
cy. Because the blocks could be stored and printed at will as required, there was little need to
stockpile copies. Tsien estimates that for Chinese wood-block editions in general, the average
print-run for first editions was about one hundred copies, but it varied considerably depend-
ing on the nature of the materials; [Ch'ien,] "Chung-kuo tiao-pan yin-shua chi-shu tsa-t'an"
@SItYiESGlJfftffi,Chung-kuoyin-shua 20 (May 1988), reprinted in Chung-kuo shu-chilun-
wenchi, pp. 146-47. In one notorious case, Chu Hsi accused the former Prefect of T'ai-chou
WM1i, T'ang Chung-yu )A{4J, of using prefectural funds to print for private distribution
and sale as many as 606 (or 603) sets of a collection of works in 15 ts'e (comprised of the Hsun
Tzu, Yang Hsiung's Fayen & F, Han Yii's collected works, and Wang T'ung's IEA [fl. late
sixth century] Chungshuo tp). These sets appear to have been produced during a single
print-run in 1181; see Chu Hsi, "An T'ang Chung-yu ti-liu-chuang" ,V9#:M, )f, Hui-
an chi **P (Ssu-k'uch'iian-shuedition), 19.33b-35a; see also bibliographic note in Wang
Kuo-wei, Liang Chekuk'an-penk'ao, in WangKuo-weihsien-sheng ch'iian-chi:Hsui-pien,1:2.304-
5; on the print count, see Ts'ao Chih, "Chu Hsi yii Sung-tai k'o-shu," p. 118 n. 24; for relat-
ed discussions of printing abuses by T'ang, see Shu-linch'ing-hua,"Sung Chu-tzu ho T'ang
Chung-yu k'o-shu kung-an," 10.272-73; Poon, "Books," pp. 141-42.
entailed higher production costs, the materials used were of the
finest quality, the product, though much in demand, was mono-
polized by the Directorate, and since the Directorate depended on
printing for revenues, it had a persistent interest in raising prices.83
That high prices posed a difficulty is suggested by two facts: acad-
emies that could not afford the government-produced books ap-
pealed for price waivers, and mid-sized, cheaper imprints, such as
the Chung-shu wu-ching FMOM editions of the classics, became
very popular once they appeared during the Chia-yu (1056-64) and
Chih-p'ing (1064-68) periods.84
Intermittent attempts by the Sung court to improve state-wide
dissemination of the Nine Classics imprints can be traced through
imperial decrees authorizing the distribution of one free set to
each of the province-sized circuit governments (990),85 granting
donations to (private and government) academy and prefectural-
government petitioners (895-1031),86 to prefectural academies and

83 The Directorate's financial interest may explain an edict of 987 ordering that prices on

Directorate imprints remain unchanged (SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 75, 28. la [Yung-hsi 4/11]),
an edict of 1017 denying further price increases on the Classicsand canonical subcommen-
taries, in which Chen-tsung reminds the Directorate in stern Mencian terms that the Classics
are not being printed for the sake of profit (Sungta chao-lingchi 150.556 [T'ien-hsi 1191kuei-hai
Hsu ch'ang-pien90.12b; YH: "I-wen," "Ching-te ch'iin-shu t'ien pan," 43.18b); also Pi
Yuan :%i [1730-97] et. al., comp., Hsu Tzu-chiht'ung-chien(Che-chiang shu-chui, 1881; fac-
simile reprint, Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1957), 33.752, no. 67. For the Directorate re-
quest for profit on the 1088 imprints of Shang-hanlun and other medical books, see n. 80.
84 The earliest example of a price-waiver is one granted to the Yen-chou prefectural

academy in 985. The newly-founded academy could not afford to buy the imprints, so it
offered its own printing paper instead. The paper was returned with a free set; Ch'en Kung-
liang M-9A (fl. 1200?), Yen-chou t'u-ching j19i, (Chien-hsits'un-shehui-k'anedition, 1896;
facsimile reprint in Ts'ung-shuchi-ch'eng),1.95; discussed in Poon, "Books," p. 92. Poon
notes that donations to academies were discontinued in the Southern Sung after prices were
reduced owing to the influx of commercial imprints; "Books," p. 95. The reduced-size edi-
tions were produced because booksellers complained that the standard large-characterDirec-
torate imprints sold poorly, and readers found the very small characters in "kerchief-box"
editions inconvenient; Hsu ch'ang-pien266.7b-8a, interlinear note quoting Lu T'ao Mm
(1031-1107), Chi-wen 2r.
85 Hsiut'ung-chien15.358, no. 6. Both senior and junior officials were ordered to read them.
86 In 977: White Deer Grotto (Po-lu tung
00AJM1)Academy of Lu-shan, Chiang-chou;
YH: "Kung-shih" 91 167.30a, Hsu t'ung-chien9.213-14, no. 26. In 989: K'ang-chou *fi+
Academy; SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 54, 2.2a (Tuan-kung 2/5/3). In 996: Sung-yang Aj
Academy, Sung-shan; YH: "Kung-shih" 167.32a; SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 54, 2.2a (Chih-
tao 21716). In 1001: Yuieh-lu & Academy, T'an-chou; YH: "Kung-shih" 167.30b, Hsu
ch'ang-pien 48.1 la, Hsii t'ung-chien 22.51 1, no. 17, Ai-jih chai ts'ung-ch'ao 4.165. In 101 1: Wen-
study halls (1001),87 and then (in 1031) to all government acad-
emies upon their establishment.88 In the early years, distribution was
more haphazard. The Chancellor of the Directorate, Hsing
Ping, was speaking diplomatically when he assured Chen-tsung
in 1005 during an inspection visit to its printing department (the
Book Treasury, Shu-k'u ) that all deficiencies in the supply of
copies of even the companion classical subcommentaries had been
corrected by Directorate imprints that "all officials and commoners
now own. 89 Presumably, most individuals outside the court who
succeeded in obtaining personal copies of early Directorate imprints
got them by copying them out by hand, or by copying or purchasing
someone else's transcription.
Imprints steadily became more plentiful through the eleventh cen-
tury as increasing numbers of local government, academy, private,
and commercial printers came on stream.90 Increases in print books
begin to register after mid-century.9' Still, it was probably well into

hsuan-wang miao IA242E*, Ying-chou; SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 54, 2.2b (Hsiang-fu 3/2).
In 1031: Ch'ing-chou n)1j Academy; Hsii ch'ang-pien110.4a, Hsu t'ung-chien38.874, no. 9.
87 SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 54, 2.2a (Hsien-p'ing 4/6); Hsu ch'ang-pien 49.2b; Hsu t'ung-
chien22.513, no. 33.
88 Hsu t'ung-chien 38.874, no. 9.
89 Hsuich'ang-pien 60. la; Ou-yang Hsuian WWI; (1274/5-1358) et al., comp., Sungshih5

, attr. T'o T'o Li (1313-55) (PNPS edition) [hereafter SS], 431.7a (Hsing Ping biog.),
quoted in Ching-ik'ao293.3a; abbreviated in YH: "I-wen," "Ching-te ch'iin-shu t'ien pan,"
43.18a; translated in Poon, "Books," pp. 118-19, and Kasoff, ChangTsai, pp. 4-5. In the
slightly different version given in SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 75, 28. lb, "many" (k) replaces
"all" (h). Hsing Ping also reports that the number of printing blocks in the Book Treasury
had grown from less than 4,000 at the beginning of the dynasty to over 100,000, including
complete sets of the classics, histories, and classical subcommentaries. Hsing directs Chen-
tsung's attention to the subcommentaries because he compiled the Erh-yasubcommentary,
edited others, and supervised the printing of all of them.
90 For example, in a memorial of 1055, Ou-yang Hsiu remarks that despite the govern-
ment ban on unauthorized printing of literary collections, imprints have recently become
quite numerous because booksellers are not regulated; "Lun tiao-yin wen-tzu cha-tzu" &
WU#TJT, in Tsou-i chi *fi* 12, Ou-yangkungchi, 108.1 lb-12b. The ban was promul-
gated in 1027; see SHY: "Hsing-fa" IJjl, ts'e 165, 2.16a (T'ien-sheng 5/2/2).
91 For informative treatments of developments in the supply of imprints, see Shu-linch'ing-
hua, chuian3 (pp. 60-88); Chang Hsiu-min, "Sung Hsiao-tsung shih-tai k'o-shu shu liueh" X
t84ggIJt%, T'u-shu-kuanhsiiehchi-k'anXffitfJ 10.3 (1936): 385-96, and "Nan
Sung k'o-shu ti-yui k'ao" XaaME T'u-shu-kuanX-4M Sept. 1961, no. 3: 52-56,
both rpt. in ChangHsiu-minyin-shuashihlun-wen-chi,pp. 96-117, 84-95, and incorporated into
his excellent survey of Sung printing in Chung-kuo yin-shua shih, pp. 53-200; Su Po MO,
"Nan Sung te tiao-pan yin-shua" M5$1 JRWWNIJ,WW 135.1 (1962): 15-28, 53; Poon,
the second half of the eleventh century that prices began to decline
significantly, dropping further in the twelfth and thirteenth centu-
ries.92 Throughout most of the eleventh century, transcription

"Books," pp. 8-27, 127-44, 145-81; Edgren, "Southern Song Printing"; and studies in
Nagasawa Kikuya, Nagasawa Kikuya chosakushuif vol. 3 (Si-Genpan no kenkyui
57ji',CD6F5) (Kyakogakushoin, 1983).
92 Attributed to the commercialization of printing in the Southern Sung;
Poon, "Books,"
pp. 95, 180. This is difficult to document by reference to book prices, since scanty data are
available, and practically none for the Northern Sung. A price of 1,000 cash [ch'ien]for an edi-
tion of Tu Fu's works in 20 chuian,published in 1059 by the Su-chou Treasury [kung-shihk'u
, is mentioned in a later Sung source, which also claims, improbably, that ten thou-
sand copies were sold; see Fan Ch'eng-ta -)AiAk (1120-93), Wu-chiinchih :;I,i (1192)
(Shou-shan ko ts'ung-shu edition, shih ser., 1844; reprint, 1922), 6.1 lb.
Complete account statements and fragments appended to a handful of Southern Sung im-
prints are collected in Shu-linch'ing-hua6.143-45 from P'eng Yiian-jui 3y/ (1731-1803),
comp., T'ien-lu lin-langshu-muhou-pien ; (comp. 1798) (Changsha, 1884,
with T'ien-lulin-langshu-mu,comp. Yu Min-chung :ftr et al.); also Lu Hsin-yuian L'i,
(1834-94) and Li Tsung-lien g (chin-shih 1874), comp., Pi Sung lou ts'ang-shu chih i
W,1 (privately printed, 1882; facsimile reprint, Ch'ing-jenshu-mut'i-pa ts'ung-k'an A
Mgi ,-no. 2, Peking: Chung-hua shu-chiu, 1990).
The Shu-linch'ing-huadata are interpreted with different conclusions in Flug, "Chinese
Book Publishing," pp. 58-62; Tsien, Paper,pp. 372-73, and Twitchett, Printing,pp. 64-65,
90 n. 17. Twitchett finds that printed books were still an expensive luxury. He cites the price
of 8,000 cash ("8 strings [kuaniR]") for the imprint, Ta I ts'ui-yen 2jt- (20 ts'e) (Shu-
chou Treasury, 1176; see T'ien-lulin-langshu-muhou-pien2.5a-b). Since so few data have been
preserved, however, it is difficult to generalize with any certainty about the prices of books
produced by commercial printers, who aimed at a broader market. By contrast, Tsien, em-
phasizes the relative cheapness of print books over manuscript books. He agrees with Weng
T'ung-wen AiM}ii who finds that printed books cost only ten percent as much to produce as
manuscript books during the Late T'ang, that this price differential generally held constant
through the Sung and Ming periods, and that the same differential was reflected in retail
prices; see Weng, "Yin-shua shu tui-yuishu-chi ch'eng-pen te ying-hsiang" WOIJ*+11g
)AU'WO CHHP, n.s., 6.1-2 (1967): 35-43. But the evidence cited seems too slender to
support such a generalization. For the Sung, Weng cites an interlinear note in Hsu ch'ang-pien
for 1024 which reports that the cost of producing calendars was reduced from 300,000 to
30,000 (cash) when printing replaced hand-copying; see Hsu ch'ang-pien 102.18a-b (T'ien-
sheng 2/10/lhsin-ssu; Weng writes " 1042" here.). Weng's hypothesis, based on one interlinear
note, ignores other factors, including supply and demand. For example, the account state-
ment preserved in a Ming replica of a Huang-chou 1147 imprint of Wang Yii-ch'eng's TEA
M (954-1001) literary collection, Wang Huang-chou Hsiao-hsu chi 3tJfi '1& (30 chuan in 8
ts'e) lists costs totaling 2,426 cash (weni;): 260 for printing and binding paper, 500 for block
and brush rental, 430 for binder's salaries, and 1,136 cash ("1 string and 136 cash") for all
other charges excluding printing paper). But the book was priced at 5,000 cash ("five
strings"), more than double the printer's cost; see Pi Sunglouts'ang-shu chih72.19a-b; cf. leaf
displayed in Twitchett, p. 65, pl. 25, from another replica of WangHuang-chouHsiao-hsiichii,
described in Sun Hsing-yen *,iIi (1753-1823), comp., P'ing-chin-kuan chien-ts'ang chishu-chi
+*MKOU-04 (preface 1808) (Shih-hsiint'ang ts'ung-shu edition, 2d ser., 1878-85), 3.9b.
remained the popular mode of reproduction and the usual way per-
sonal libraries were built. Most students intending to cheat on
government examinations by smuggling miniature "kerchief-box
editions" (chin-hsiangpen rhM*) into the examination halls, had to
rely on hand-copied texts; in the 1050s, the going rate for transcrib-
ing these was 20,000-30,000 cash (ch'ien 0).93 In the twelfth centu-
ry, though, anybody could buy cheap, commercially printed "pock-
et books" (chia-tai ts'e t.)MJ) suitable for such a purpose.94
To be sure, connoisseurs still preferred to build book collections
around cherished manuscripts, and in times of peril, printed books
were the first to go. In 1127, when Chao Ming-ch'eng M (1081-
1129) was forced by the advancing Jurchen invasion to abandon
much of the collection of books, rubbings, and antiquities that he
had assembled with his wife, Li Ch'ing-chao i (1084-1144),
choosing but a portion to transport to safety in Chien-k'ang 4!
(Nan-ching), knowing it was only a matter of time before the
remainder would be lost, the first objects he jettisoned were "bulky
imprints," followed by "sets of paintings in many scrolls, old bronzes
that lacked inscriptions, and Directorate [print] editions. " Even so,
he took with him fifteen cart loads of books, the final choices being
dictated as much by a collector's values as by size and weight.95
Nonetheless, by this time, for the majority of readers whose interest
in books was utilitarian, imprints were becoming the staple.
An important phase in the transition from manuscript to print cul-
ture comes in the late Northern Sung. Many writers who lived
through the transition recorded the changes with regret. In evalu-
ating their reports, it should be kept in mind that some of the

9 The price is reported in a memorial of 1057 by Ou-yang Hsiu describing examination

abuses, "T'iao-yuieh chii-jen huai-chia wen-tzu cha-tzu" t Aff 1I#, in Tsou-i

chi 15, Ou-yangkungchi, 111. 1a. The relevant passage is translated in Poon, "Books, " p. 109.
94 For a discussion of developments in miniature books used for cheating, see Shu-linch'ing-
hua, "Chin-hsiang-pen chih shih," 2.31-32, and Li Mi's supplement in Shu-linch'inghua,
Shu-lintsa-hua,p. 301; Poon, "Books," pp. 109-12; also Chaffee, ThornyGates,pp. 113-14,
and Lee, Government Education,p. 168.
95 Li Ch'ing-chao, "Chin-shihlu hou-hsii" !&TM&fi8, in Li Ch'ing-chao chi chiao-chuf
1>>tiAE, [ed. Wang Hsiieh-ch'u FTEMl](Peking: Jen-min wen-hsuiehch'u-pan-she, 1979),
p. 179. This work is translated and discussed by Stephen Owen in Remembrances: The Ex-
perienceof thePast in ClassicalChineseLiterature(Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1986),
pp. 80-98.
reactions were colored by criticism of the reformist programs imple-
mented between 1069 and 1085 by Wang An-shih (1021-86) and
continued from 1093 to 1125 by his followers.96 Wang chose print
as the medium for launching his attack on tradition, using the Di-
rectorate to issue imprints of new interpretations of the Shang shu,
Mao Shih, and Chou li, intended to replace the canonical Han and
T'ang commentaries and support his programs.97 The works were
begun in 1073, engraved in 1075, and distributed to all government
academies. To speed distribution, the Fiscal Commissions of
Ch'eng-tu and Hang-chou were authorized to engrave and sell
mid-sized editions; private reprints and sales were forbidden upon
penalty of flogging, and rewards were offered to informants.98 In
1093, the new commentaries were made the sole standard for evalu-
ating examination papers.99 This was the first time the power of
Directorate printing had been used to establish innovative inter-
pretations of the Classics. Before this, the Directorate imprimature
had been restricted to traditional interpretations. The speed and
success with which the new orthodoxy was propagated in print awak-
ened many to the power of printing to alter intellectual traditions.
It also made critics wary of the ever-increasing influence of printing

96 Poon links attacks on regressive scholarly standards made by Yeh Meng-te and others to

criticism of the corrupting influence of Wang's reforms, but does not consider the significance
of Wang's use of printing; see "Books," pp. 80-81.
97 These three are referred to as the Hsin-hsiu ching-i ffX or San ching-i ; In-
dividual titles vary in different Sung citations. In WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 4 and 8, see en-
tries for Hsin-ching Shang shu [sic], 13 chiuan, 177.1533a; Hsin-ching Shih i, 30 ch/uan, 177.1546c;
and Hsin-ching Chou-li i, 22 chuian, 181.1557a-b; cf. Chien-pen-k'ao 2.31-32. The WHTK en-
tries are quoted from two private bibliographic catalogues, Chun-chaitu-shuchih5 *V::
(ca. 1151-1180 to 1184; revised and enlarged by 1187), comp. Ch'ao Kung-wu (WHTK cites
the Ch'u-chou M11'Iedition of 1249), and Chih-chaishu-luchieh-t'iAWI W (ca. 1250),
comp. Ch'en Chen-sun |* (ca. 1190-after 1249). The WHTK entries from Ch'en's work
are copied in the reconstituted Chih-chai shu-lu chieh-t'i (Kuo-hsuiehchi-pen ts'nung-shuedition,
1939), 2.27-28, 35, 41-42. For Ch'ao's work, consult Chiin-chai tu-shu chih chiao-chengt
plrIi, ed. Sun Meng *,V, (Shanghai: Ku-chi ch'u-pan-she, 1990), pp. 57, 67, 81. Sun's
edition collates the Ch'ui-chou edition (1819 recut) against the different version of the work
given in the Yiian-chou .'01Jiedition of 1249 (facsimile reprint in SPTK, 3d ser.).
98 See discussion in Robert M. Hartwell, "Historical Analogies, Public Policy, and Social

Science in Eleventh- and Twelfth-Century China, AmericanHistoricalReview76.3 (1971): 713-

14; on the purpose and organization of the work: Hsn ch/ang-pien 265. 10a- lla (Hsi-ning 8/6/
hsin-hai), 24b-25b (chia-yin);on donations to the National University and all prefectural
government schools in 1075: Hsn ch/ang-pien 266.4b (Hsi-ning 8171kuei-yu).
99 Hsu t'ung-chien 266.7b (Hsi-ning 8171keng-chen), quoted in Chien-pen k'ao 2.32.
on younger generations, for whom print-texts were naturally the
"right texts" (cheng-weniELZ).100
The generational changes may be traced through comparisons of
book culture past and present recorded by contemporary commenta-
tors. Thus, Su Shih, writing in the late eleventh century at a time
when "printed books are everywhere, and a myriad new leaves are
printed every day, " draws a contrast to conditions earlier in the cen-
tury when books were in short supply. He recalls stories by older
scholars, about how, when they were young, it was difficult even to
find a copy of the Shih-chi or the Han shu to transcribe. Given the
abundance of imprints in his own day, Su Shih observes, scholars
should be more learned, but instead they don't open the books.'0'
Ch'ao I-tao JUL1 (1059-1129) testifies to the growing glamour of
printed texts. To the younger generation schooled increasingly on
standardized print texts rather than idiosyncratic manuscripts, im-
prints seemed to lay claim to a public authority that manuscripts
lacked. Commenting on a holograph edition of Tu Fu's poems by
Sung Ch'i , (998-1061), which Ch'ao thought provided a more
reliable text than any current imprint, Ch'ao recognizes that errors
in the print versions might never be corrected because people now
gave credence to whatever appeared in print: "The older genera-
tion had extensive experience with documents, unlike the younger
generation who think that print editions alone provide the correct
text (cheng-wen).11102

After Chu I's * (1097-1166/67) observation on the popular embrace of imprints

since the Five Dynasties Directorate Classics:"People put away their own copies of the Clas-
sics and Histories,and they regarded the printed ones as correct;" I-chiiehliao tsa-chi ,
n (Chih-pu-tsu chai ts'ung-shu,3d ser., 1776), 2.53b-54a; quoted in Ching-ik'ao 293.4b.
'O' See Su Shih, "Li-shih shan-fang ts'ang-shu chi" 4ElW EIRS4 (composed to honor
Li Ch'ang 4g [1027-90] for having donated his library of more than 9,000 chuanto Po-shih
an bTi Monastery, at Lu-shan), Tung-p'ochi **i.$, in Tung-p'och'i-chitQ-Lt, ed.
Miao Ch'uian-sun 6 (1844-1919) (Ch'eng-hua period [1465-1488] edition; recut, Pao-
hua an, 1908-9), 32.6b-8a; quoted in WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 1, 174.15IOc-la. This pas-
sage is translated in K. T. Wu, p. 128. A later source reports that Su Shih himself obtained
treasured copies of Han shu and Hou Han shu through personal transcriptions; see Li Jih-hua
F EI (1539-1635), Tzu-t'aohsuiantsa-chui4t ff*iW (Tsui-li i-shu edition, 1878), 3.9b-
102 Colophon to Sung Ch'i's Tu Shao-lingchi R, 1 chuian,quoted in Chou Tzu-chih
1VE (1082-after 1151), Chu-p'olao-jenshih-huat*U9A4j (Pai-ch'uanhsiieh-hai,2d ser.,
1930), 2.13a. For Chou's criticism of contemporary Tu Fu imprints, see ibid., 3.8b.
Ch'ao's concerns are reiterated in the next generation by Yeh
Meng-te 'M,^ (1077-1148) who links printing to the deteriorating
quality of texts. Yeh attributes the decline to the decay of the scholar-
ly traditions of collating and memorizing books. Careful collation of
hand-copied texts had been one of the prime tasks of book collectors
in pre-print times. It was an activity that dignified the materialistic
enterprise of acquiring books, offering scholars a prized opportunity
to contribute to the improvement of texts in transmission. The colla-
tion process also imparted personal benefits-intimate familiarity
with a work and ease in memorizing it.103Although collation con-
tinued to be an important part of book collecting in the Sung and
later,104Yeh remarks that many scholars of his day no longer col-
lated the books they collected. They simply accumulated them.
He tells us that the sheer abundance of imprints was having a pro-
found psychological impact on scholars who could acquire books
easily and, for that reason, read them carelessly. Yeh's famous state-
ment on these matters echoes the 1034 memorial we have seen
above, which urged the correction of the ThreeHistories imprints:
Before the T'ang, when all books were hand written and printing had not yet been
invented, people regarded book collecting as an honor. Not many people could col-
lect books. Collectors were meticulous about comparing and collating their books,

103 These are included in Yeh Te-hui's list of the eight virtues of collation: collation de-

velops inner tranquility and self-control, and offers release from all vulgar worries; enables
one to accumulate merit with the ancients while helping students to come; prevents books
from getting moldy and being eaten by insects; enables one to acquire lasting fame as a trans-
mitter; enables one to remember books better after reaching middle-age when memory begins
to fail; aids one in acquiring detailed knowledge of the contents of books, which can be ap-
plied in writing, prevents one from napping on long summer days, keeps one warm in winter,
and helps one bear the burdens of life; and it increases one's knowledge of bibliography,
which helps in hunting down other books; Ts'ang-shushih-yuieh agR+ (1911; Kuan-kut'ang
so-chushu edition, 2d ser., 1919), "Chiao-k'an" 7, 9a-lOb; trans. Achilles Fang, "Book-
man's Decalogue," HJAS 13 (1950): 149-50. For additional remarks on collation as a memo-
ry aid, see Tzu-t'aohsuiantsa-chui3.10a.
104 The attention given to collation in later book-collecting manuals testifies to the survival

of this tradition; see Ts'ang-shushih-yuieh9a-lOb; Sun Ts'ung-t'ien j (before 1680-after

1749), Ts'ang-shuchi-yao g (Ou-hsiangling-shihedition, 1896), "Chiao-ch'ou" 4, 7b-
8b, trans. Achilles Fang, "Bookman's Manual," HJAS 14 (1951): 233-35. Hung Liang-chi
AM' (1746-1809) also describes "collators" as one of the five breeds of book collectors; see
Pei-chiangshih-huaIMPAM (Yiieh-yat'ang ts'ung-shuedition, 6th ser., 1854), 3. la. For a sur-
vey of contributions by later book collectors to textual criticism, see Taam, ChineseLibraries,
pp. 68-84.
so they very often had reliable texts (shan-pen**). And scholars, due to the difficul-
ty of transcribing texts, were meticulous about learning to recite books from memo-
ry, down to the last detail. During the Five Dynasties, Feng Tao 51 (881-954)
asked that the government print the Six Classics.During the Ch'un-hua reign [990-
94], our Court also printed the Shih-chiand the Ch'iten[i.e., Han] and Hou Han
shu.'05From that time on, printers multiplied greatly, so gentlemen no longer set
their minds on book collecting. Since it was easy for scholars to obtain books, the
[tradition] of reciting them from memory was neglected. And yet, the woodblocks
were not correct to begin with. They all contained errors. But that generation [and
successive generations have] accepted wood-block texts as correct, while the
manuscripts of collectors have been lost with every passing day, and so the errors
can never be corrected. What a pity!
When Yu Ching (Hsiang-kung 0&9) was Assistant Director of the Palace Li-
brary [Pi-shu sheng], he reported that the text of the Han shu was riddled with
errors. [In 1034], he was commanded, together with Wang Yiian-shu TWO [Wang
Chu] to compare and collate [the imprint] against the old texts in the Imperial
Archives. The result was a corrigenda (k'an-wu 11i;) in 30 chuian.'06 Later, Liu
Kung-fu WMJWM [Liu Ch'ang J, 1019-68] and his younger brother [Liu Pin A,
1022-88] both compiled corrigenda to the two Han histories.'07 When I was at
Hsii-ch'ang A:,, I obtained a copy of Sung Ching-wen's X 3Z [Sung Ch'i] own
collation notes on the Directorate imprint of the [Historyof the] WesternHan [i.e.,
the Han shu]. In it, he cites thirteen other editions he consulted in collating the

105 The project was authorized in 994 (Ch'un-hua 5). The engraving was completed in 997

(Chih-tao 3). See n. 155.

106 In addition to YuiChing and Wang Chu, Chang Kuan also participated in the editing;

see n. 66. The imperial library catalogue, Ch'ung-wentsung-muWIZ; H (completed 1042),

comp. Wang Yao-ch'en 3EPf (1001-56) et al., also includes Li Shu 24R and Sung Ch'i
(both, Administrators of the Proclamation Drafting Section) on the list of editors assigned to
the ThreeHistoriesrecollation, but their role in the Han shuis unclear; see the Ch'ung-wentsung-
mu entry quoted in WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 27, 200.1675b (Hsin-chiaoShih-chi,Han shu,
Hou Han Han-San-shih k'an-wu),from which it has been collected in the reconstituted Ch'ung-
wen tsung-muchi-kao1#, comp. Ch'ien Tung-yuian ag (d. 1824) et al. (Yueh-yat'ang
ts'ung-shuedition, 15th ser., 1853), 2.2b-3a. On the ThreeHistoriesrecollation and resulting
corrigenda, see nn. 160-62.
107 The Liu brothers collaboratedwith Liu Ch'ang's son, Liu Feng-shih *Ut (1041-1113),

in a private study on the Han shu. Other corrigenda on the two Han histories are also credited
to Liu Pin, who assisted Ssu-ma Kuang with research for Tzu-chiht 'ung-chien in his speciality.
See nn. 164, 172.
108 Sung Ch'i compiled collation notes on the Han shu during the Ching-yu period (1034-
37), but these do not seem to have been included in Yu Ching's revision. Collation notes at-
tributed to Sung Ch'i are found in the Han shuimprint from the Southern Sung (Chien-an R
2, 1196) by Huang Shan-fu t and Liu Chih-wen WIJN (Yiian-ch'i Ek), and in the
later reprints from the Ch'ing-yiian (1195-1200) and Chia-ting periods (1208-24); see n. 172.
However, the authenticity of the notes is debatable; see discussion in M. A. N. Loewe,
"Some Recent Editions of the Ch'ien-Han-shu," AM, n.s., 10.2 (1964): 165, 166 n. 13.
text. 109But two lines are missing from the middle [of his list]. Alas, these works are
now lost. "0

Chu Hsi's later "Rules of Reading" (Tu-shufa Mri43),"' with its

prescriptions for the proper approach to reading the classics, may
be seen as a nostalgic attempt to convert the print-oriented students
of his day to the traditions of pre-print book culture idealized by
Yeh Meng-te. The sins of reading that Chu Hsi addresses in the
"Rules of Reading" -book greed (the desire to gobble down as
many books as possible), speed-reading, superficial reading, jump-
ing around in books rather reading them continuously from begin-
ning to end-are all by-products of the new Sung print culture. Chu
Hsi says:

eLoewe draws
t on Hiranaka Reiji :V 2p+k, "Yonezawa no S6han Zen-GoKanjoni tsuite" *
r,in Chu-goku
kodaino denseitozeiho O)O
f i &c J , Toy6shi
kenkyius6kan, no. 16 (Kyoto: T6y6shi kenkyufkai,Kyoto University, 1967), pp. 446-48. A
list of fifteen sources reportedly used by Sung Ch'i in collation is given in Shih-leh 2.13b-14b
(it includes the Yu Ching imprint). The same list is found in the prefatory matter of exem-
plars of different Chien-an Huang-Liu editions; see Hiranaka Reiji, p. 448; and fac-
simile leaves displayed and discussed in Ozaki Yasushi MOM, SeishiSo-Genbanno kenkyuz iL
_SP_51~t&7CDF6 P (Kyuakoshoin, 1989), pp. 258-59, 261, 266, 268.
'09 "Thirteen" is probably an error for "fifteen." This is noted by Yui-wenShao-i 4iZF
S (ca. 1208-24), who cites the list from a Ch'ing-yiian period Han shu edition (see n. 108) in
his textual notes to Yeh Meng-te, Shih-linyen-yu Tii # -M (completed 1136) (Shih-lini-shuedi-
tion, 1908), 8.5a.
110 Shih-linyen-yui8.5a; quoted in WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 1, 174.1509b, Ching-ik'ao

293.3b; excerpt translated in Carter, Invention,pp. 95-96. Yeh's criticism has strongly
influenced later views of the impact of printing on Sung scholarly practices. For instance,
Chiao Hung X (1541-1620) says that when Han Ch'i 0* (1008-75) was a young man,
printed books were rare and all texts were copied out by hand, so borrowers read books care-
fully and repaired them before returning them. Chiao then contrasts such behavior to the
habits of his time; Chiao-shihpi-shenghsui-chiXA**M-% (Chin-lingts'ung-shuedition, 2d
ser., 1915), 4.13a-b; for a similar contrast, see Hu Ying-lin, Shao-shihshan-fangpi-ts'ung
1.17a. Elsewhere, Hu uses Yeh's statement to launch his widely-quoted defense of the reliabil-
ity of print-books. Hu concedes that Yeh's criticism of the textual accuracy of imprints may
be valid for the Sung, but maintains that the opposite is true in his time. He argues that more
care is taken in preparing print-texts than manuscripts because printing involves a greater in-
vestment of capital; scholars, therefore, no longer take manuscript-books seriously. Once a
print edition appears, manuscript copies instantly become unsaleable; Shao-shihshan-fangpi-
ts'ung, 4.6a-b; quoted in Shu-linyui-hua1.11; excerpt translated in Drege, Les Bibliotheques en
Chine,p. 267. Hu's comments disclose a remarkably commercial valuation of books.
"'. Chapter titles (chuian10-11) in Chu-tzuyui-lei *T Nffi (1270), ed. Li Ching-te ~tl,
(fl. 1263) (Liu-shihch'uan-ching t'angedition, 1876); translated in Gardner, Learningto bea Sage,
pp. 126-62; hermeneutics discussed in Van Zoeren, PoetryandPersonality,pp. 230-49; and the
subject of Chu-tzutu-shufa (see n. 50).

People today read books carelessly because books are available in printed copies,
and these are abundant. Consider that the ancients all used bamboo strips [for tran-
scribing books]: unless a person possessed great resources, he could not acquire
[books]. How could a person of limited means secure them? . . . Consider that
when Huang Pa RV was in prison [73-70 B.c.] he received the [Shang]shu from
Hsia-hou Sheng fiW'112:two winters passed before the entire work could be trans-
mitted. Surely it was because the ancients did not have written texts that they could
acquire [books] only by thoroughly memorizing them from beginning to end.
Those wishing to receive lectures on a work they were learning to recite, also had to
be able to recite it by heart before receiving instruction from their teacher. Con-
sider Tung-p'o's [Su Shih's] "Record of the Library in Mr. Li's Mountain Stu-
dio": at the time he wrote it, books were still difficult to acquire.113 Ch'ao I-tao
once wanted to acquire the Kung[-yang]and Ku[-liang] chuan. He searched for
copies everywhere, but none were to be had. Later on he found one text and then
acquired his copies by transcribing it. People today regard even transcription as
too much bother. That is why they read books carelessly.114

Chu Hsi's recommendations for reform-read less but more slowly,

repeatedly, and with greater concentration, one book at a time;
vocalize the text when reading; learn to recite books from
memory-reflect his understanding of the ethics of reading in pre-
print times. In most respects, his characterizations are accurate.
The emphasis on vocalization and memorization is true to what we
know about earlier book culture. Lecturing and public recitation
of texts were traditional arts, and reading aloud was normal for pri-
vate reading, tu =at (read) often meaning "to speak a written text." '115
The Rhapsody on Reading (Tu-shu fu Ati0) by Shu Hsi I*1tf (d. ca.
300) gives a vivid description of the art as it was practiced at the end
of the fourth century:
The Master Who Abandons Himself to the Way
Lives detached in calm retirement
Cultivating and training his pure spirit

112 Hsia-hou Sheng was imprisoned for opposing Emperor Hsiian's X (r. 73-48) decision
to honor Emperor Wu t (r. 141-87 B.c.), and Huang Pa, for supporting Hsia-hou. Hsia-
hou Sheng ("the Elder Hsiao-hou"), a foremost authority on the Shangshu, agreed to teach
the text to Huang Pa after Huang declared that he was willing to risk death to receive his in-
struction; see Han shu 75.2a-4b, also 88.12a.
See n. 101.
Chu-tzuyu-lei10. lOa. For a complete translation, see Gardner, Learningto bea Sage, pp.
139-40, no. 4.43.
"' See discussion in Drege, "La Lecture et l'ecriture," pp. 77-103.
Inhaling and exhaling sheer emptiness
He thrusts his will beyond the clouds
Folds away his form in a lowly hut
Lowering the curtains, leaning on his arm rest
Clad in white silks, he reads his books (tu shu):
Rising, falling, resonantly reverberating
Sometimes rapidly, sometimes slowly
Relaxed and at ease, yet concentrated and controlled,
Now restrained, now abandoned.
When he intones (sung M) the "Chiuan-erh" 4,116 the loyal
minister rejoices
When he sings (yung U) the "Lu-o" , the filial son is
When he declaims (ch 'eng f) the "Big Rat" W.118 rapacious
officials depart
When he trills (ch'ang "R)the "White Colt" OiJ,"9 the worthy
gentleman returns.
Thus it was that Shun sang (yung) the Poems to the end of his
Confucius read (tu) the Changes at mid-life12'
Yiian-hsien YO immersed himself in chanting (yin "+), and so
forgot his lowliness122

116 MaoShih,no. 3.
'7Mao Shih, no. 202.
Mao Shih, no. 113.
119 Mao Shih, no. 186.
Shun is associated with poetry because he charged his Music Master, K'uei *, to instill
accord in the world by regulating sounds: "Poems speak of the author's resolve, and singing
prolongs speech. Sounds are carried by singing, and pitches create harmony among the
sounds. When the eight timbres have been brought into accord, then none will encroach upon
one another, and harmony will exist between spirits and people; Shangshucheng-i,in Shih-san-
chingchu-shu," Shun tien, " 3.19c. The first sentence is quoted in the Great Preface of the Mao
121 Confucius said: "Grant me a few more years, so that I may study the Changes at the age
of fifty, and I shall be free from major errors"; Lun-yi 7.17, trans. D. C. Lau, TheAnalects
(Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1979), p. 170.
122 YuianHsien (Tzu-ssu #,, b. 515 B.C.), one of Confucius's disciples, devoted himself to
his studies in complete indifference to extreme poverty and neglect. He is depicted as strum-
ming his zither and singing, in similar anecdotes in K'ung-tzuchia-yuand ChuangTzu; see
Richard B. Mather's translation of the K'ung-tzuchia-yuanecdote, quoted in Liu Chuin's WIJ
Yen-hui gZl I concentrated diligently on it and so made light of
Ni K'uan YM recited (sung A) as he weeded'24
Mai-ch'en =1 chanted (yin) as he walked, bearing a load of
If even worthies and sages read with such tireless devotion
How much more should middling talents and petty people?126
Silent reading was so little known in early medieval China that one
purported instance of it-Juan Chan's IRLP(fl. 307-12) habit of
reading "silently to grasp the essential points of a work, without
seeking detailed understanding" Mt71T*WPft, 91M-receives
special mention in Juan's Chin shu biography, as a demonstration of
his unconventionality.127 Augustine's (d. 430) astonishment at see-
ing Ambrose read silently ("But when he read, his eyes wept across the
pages, and his heart sought out the sense, but his voice and tongue
were at rest." Sed cum legebat, oculi ducebantur per paginas et
cor intellectum rimabatur, uox autem et lingua quiescebant . . .;
Confessionumlibri XIII) reminds us that vocal reading was also the
norm in the medieval West, as it was in Western antiquity.128

$1 commentary (early sixth century) to Liu I-ch'ing WIJ (403-44), Shih-shuohsin-yuit-A&

"Yen-yi" 2.9, in Shih-shuoHsin-yi: A New Accountof Talesof the World(Minneapolis: Uni-
versity of Minnesota Press, 1976), p. 33 n. 4; also A Concordance to ChuangTzu, Harvard-
Yenching Institute Sinological Index Series, Supplement no. 20 (Cambridge: Harvard Uni-
versity Press, 1956), "Jang-wang" 28, p. 78, 1. 44ff; trans. Burton Watson, The Complete
Worksof ChuangTzu (New York: Columbia University Press, 1968), pp. 315-16.
123 Yen Hui (521-490 B.C.) was praised by Confucius for being the one most eager to learn

among his disciples (Lun-yii6.2, 11.6) and also for remaining cheerful in dire poverty (Lun-yii
124 Ni K'uan (d. 102 B.C.), an authority on the Shangshu, hired himself out as a farm
laborer to earn his livelihood. During rest periods, he used to recite the classic from a book he
brought along to the fields. Later, he served as Censor-in-Chief at the court of Emperor Wu;
Han shu 58.11a-14a; Shih-chi121.9b.
125 Chu * Mai-ch'en (d. 115 B.C.) supported himself for many years by selling firewood.

He would sing and chant as he walked down the road with his burden, much to the embarrass-
ment of his wife, who left him. Later, he achieved renown as a rhapsodist, serving as Grand
Master of the Palace in the court of Emperor Wu; Han shu 64A. 1 la-13b.
126 Ou-yang HsuinWMA, (557-641), comp., I-wenlei-chuN&;ffiy (Shao-hsing period edi-
tion, recut, thirteenth century; facsimile reprint, Peking: Chung-hua shu-chui, 1959), 55.6b-
127 Fang Hsiuan-ling bjAN (578-648), comp., Chinshu R O (PNPS edition), 49.3a.
128 As translated by William A. Graham in Beyondthe WrittenWord:OralAspectsof Scripture
Indeed, vocal-reading traditions continue in China and the West
long after the introduction of printing. Though the influence of the
print environment on the continuing oral stream in Chinese book
culture is poorly understood, the situation may be similar to that in
the West, where the development of soundless reading adds an op-
tion that does not eliminate the older practice.'29 References to the
continuation of vocalized reading in the Sung are found in sundry
descriptions of collation, study, and sonorous bathroom reading. Ex-
amples include Ssu-ma Kuang's collaborator, Liu Shu XJq (1032-
78), reciting while copying a text, when shut up in Sung Min-
ch'iu's 5ktkI (1019-79) library for a fortnight;'30 Chou Mi RPM
(1232-1308) estimating that good scholars have excellent reading
voices; 3' and Sung Shou at the Historiography Institute (Shih-
kuan), reading in a palace privy, his voice heard near and far.'32
However, Chu Hsi's peculiar insistence that "the ancients did
not have written texts" (ku-ren wu pen iJRiX4), illustrated in the
above passage and elsewhere by Han examples of oral transmission
of the classics, 33 is an example of myth-making, rather than an ac-
curate report of the conditions of textual transmission in Han times.
Chu Hsi's broader claim is that the authentic texts of the classics
were mental and oral: they existed in the minds of sages and were
transmitted on the lips of the disciples. The written texts, being
later transcriptions of the internalized oral texts, are derivative and
therefore less authentic. According to his scheme, among written

in the History of Religion (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987), p. 35. For a good
overview of the Western tradition of vocal reading, see Chapter 3 (pp. 30-44).
129 Graham notes that the coming of printing in the West has been viewed by many as "the
decisive blow that felled the practice of oral, vocalized reading," but he also observes, "Si-
lent, private reading appears to have become dominant only with the advent of widespread
literacy in much of Western Europe, which was largely a nineteenth-century phenomenon";
ibid., pp. 39, 41.
130 See Ssu-ma Kuang, "Liu Tao-yuan Shih-kuo chi-nien hsui" I , in
Wen-kuo Wen-cheng Ssu-ma kung chi, 65.8a.
131 Ch'i-tungyeh-yui Y43kf f; (Chin-taipi-shu edition, 15th ser.), "Tu-shu sheng," 20.5a-b.
132 See Ch'en Meng-lei
NO& (1651-1741) et al., comp., Ku-chin t'u-shu chi-ch'eng -&i-I
-)A (1725) (facsimile reprint, Taipei: Ting-wen shu-chui, 1977), ts'e 605 ("Hsuieh-hsing
tien," chuian 96), "Tu-shu pu chi-shih," p. 940a; also miscellaneous anecdotes, pp. 938-40.
133 See Chu-tzuyui-lei 10. lOa. The preceding entry also explains errors by Han scholars and

by Mencius in quotations of the classics as memory slips due to lack of written texts; trans.
Gardner, Learning to be a Sage, p. 139, no. 4.42.
texts, ready-made print texts would seem to have even lower value
than transcribed texts. Lacking a personal dimension, they would
seem to be most in need of redemption. For Chu Hsi, the goal of
reading is to reverse the historical sequence, by internalizing texts
and ultimately leaving behind the written prompts. The combina-
tion of skepticism about authority in print texts and the nostalgia for
pre-print culture are symptomatic of the reaction to print-culture in
twelfth-century China. The personal complexity of Chu Hsi's posi-
tion may be imagined, when we recall that he supported himself by
running a printing business, which he also used to promote his
Finally, we note that Chu Hsi's devaluation of written texts was
by no means unique. The importance of leaving behind written
texts is commonly emphasized in Sung classical exegesis. Some
of the philosophical implications of this move have been discussed
by intellectual historians. Kidder Smith and the co-authors of Sung
Dynasty Uses of the I Ching have shown how the exegetical insistence
on the possibility of transcending texts develops into an insistence
on the necessity of transcending not only the traditional commen-
taries on the classics, but also the classics themselves. From this
standpoint, the texts of the classics loom as potential obstacles to a
direct apprehension of "things as they are"; as a corrective, readers
are urged to put texts in second place, "reading the things of the
world as the basis for reading the Classics.""'l3 The Neo-Confucian
scholar and textual critic Wang Po HET(1197-1274), while acknowl-
edging the historical importance of writing in transmitting the Way
of the sages, goes so far as to blame books as the chief obstruction,
averring that "the Way of the sages has been obscured because it
was written down. 2 136
134 On Chu Hsi's printing business, see Wing-Tsit Chan, Chu Hsi: New Studies (Honolulu:

University of Hawaii Press, 1989), pp. 77-81; on his concerns as a printer, see Ts'ao Chih,
"Chu-tzu yu chiao-k'an hsiieh," pp. 113-18. In the Southern Sung, many scholar-officials
became involved in private, quasi-official (i.e., printing utilizing government funds to
produce books intended for private distribution), and local government printing projects.
The names of more than one hundred such individuals are known; see discussion and list in
Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shua shih, pp. 56; 58 n. 3.
135 Kidder Smith, Jr., Peter K. Bol, Joseph A. Adler, and Don J. Wyatt, Sung Dynasty Uses
of the I Ching (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1990), Chapter 7 (by Smith), pp. 227-
Shih i R (T'ung-chih tang ching-chieh edition, shih ser., 1680; reprint, 1873), "Shihpien
The shift in attitudes toward texts exemplified by such views is
symptomatic of the general Sung reappraisal of the status of texts as
material artifacts: for many, books were no longer icons, but tools,
and often, very imperfect ones. The sheer multiplication of texts
due to printing, which helped make books common household ob-
jects, contributed also to the banalization of books, as Lo Pi noted
in the twelfth century: "Printing has made books into things of no
value. Young people today are so accustomed to them that they
treat them as ordinary objects or utensils."'37 The devalorization of
written texts implied by Sung intellectual developments cannot be
separated from the general reconception of books as public commod-
ities that was abetted by the explosion in book production. Sung in-
tellectuals inhabited a world in which the growing physical presence
of books could not be ignored. As the average size of major private
libraries tripled and quadrupled from the pre-Sung average of
10,000 chuan (an unexceptional size for serious Sung collectors),
more and more cabinets and buildings were required to house ex-
panding collections in residences, academies, and palace libraries,'38
and more and more scholars like Lu Yu lived in quarters that had
been converted into "book nests" (shu-ch'ao 8) with books rising
to the rafters on all sides."39How very difficult it must have been for

hsii," 1. la-b. The author, who is often identified as a "third-generation disciple" of Chu
Hsi, proposed radical textual revisions of the Mao Shih, Shangshu, and other classical texts.
See Ch'eng Yuan-min Vt4t, Wang Po chih sheng-p'ing yu hsiieh-shu i 2
vols. (Taipei: Wen-hai ch'u-pan-she, 1975), esp. 995-99, et seq.
137 Lo-shihchih-i, "Ch'eng-shu te-shu nan," 1.3a; quoted in Ching-ik'ao 293.6a. I am ap-

propriating Drege's phrase, "banalisation du livre" from Les Bibliothetquesen Chine,p. 267.
138 See references to sizes of collections in K. T. Wu, pp. 257-58; Ch'i-tungyeh-yii,"Shu-

chi chih o," 12.9a-IOa; Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 1.17-18. Two sources together give the most
comprehensive coverage of individual Sung collectors: P'an Mei-yiieh, Sung-taits'ang-shuchia
k'ao, and Fang Chien-hsin )ft , "Sung-tai ssu-chia ts'ang-shu pu-lu" 5KtM*Rf ;VX,
Wen-hsieniiii 35 (1988.1): 220-29, 36 (1988.2): 229-43. Fang's study supplements P'an
Mei-yuieh and earlier works. Pre-Sung figures for private collections are tabulated in Liu Ju-
lin WIJr, "Sui T'ang Wu-tai shih-ch'i te ssu-jen ts'ang-shu"
T'u-shu-kuan,Mar. 1962, no. 1: 52-55, and "Wei Chin Nan-pei-ch'ao shih-ch'i te ssu-jen
ts'ang-shu" : T'u-shu-kuan,Sept. 1961, no. 3: 57-59. Additional
bibliography on studies of private and government collections is given in Ts'ang-shulun-chutu-
pen, pp. 27-53. For reports on sundry Sung private library buildings, see P'an Ming-shen,
"Ssu-jen ts'ang-shu k'ao," pp. 233-35, and Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 1.49-51.
139 Described in Lu Yu, "Shu-ch'ao chi" 2 (dated 1184), Wei-nanwen-chi XWX1Z$
Sung thinkers to deny the primacy of written texts in a world in-
creasingly crowded with books.

Revisions of directorateimprints and the problem of textual authority.

Printing helped undermine textual authority by replacing familiar
manuscript-texts with an ever-increasing plethora of printed texts
of doubtful or impermanent authority. In terms of prestige, imprints
issued by the Directorate of Education ranked highest, followed by
those coming from local government, private, and commercial
printers (these latter led the field in terms of quantity by the twelfth
century). But the presumptive authority of Directorate editions was
undercut by imprints of canonical works that, when exposed to
public scrutiny, were found to be wanting in accuracy. This public
failure helped to weaken the imperial claim to monopoly on the
transmission of perfected texts.
The trouble began at the beginning of the Sung when the central
government embarked, without prior experience, on an ambitious
program of printing projects. The Northern Sung capital K'ai-feng
had been the site of the engraving of the Five Dynasties Directorate
Nine Classics and other works, but when the Sung dynasty opened,
the main printing centers were located in Southern China, in
Ch'eng-tu and Mei-shan W1I (in Shu), and Hang-chou (in the Wu-
Yiieh MS area). It was Southern printing that had provided the in-
spiration for the earlier Nine Classics project. Even though K'ai-feng
subsequently developed into a major printing center, the Northern
Sung Directorate continued to rely on Ch'eng-tu and Hang-chou
engravers for many projects requiring both quantity and quality."40

(SPTK ed.; 1st ser.), 18.9a-IOa; quoted in Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 1.40.

Ch'eng-tu was the site for the engraving of the Tripitakaof 971-83 and Wang An-shih's
Hsin-hsiucheng-i.Hang-chou engravers produced Directorate subcommentaries on the clas-
sics (the traditional Ch'i-chingshu-i - , [see n. 149] and later Wang's Hsin-hsiucheng-i),
most of the dynastic histories (the ThreeHistories,the SevenHistoriescovering the Northern and
Southern Dynasties, and also Hsin Tang shu; the venues of San-kuochih and Chin shu are
unknown.), Tzu-chiht'ung-chien,and a medical book, Wai-t'aipi-yaofang ' urgent-
ly needed to curb malaria among troops in the South; for details, see Wang Kuo-wei, Liang
Cheku k'an-penk'ao, 1.144-46; summary table in Poon, "Books," pp. 18. In the Southern
Sung, Ch'eng-tu's relative importance faded; Hang-chou and the Liang-Che Circuit domi-
However, print technology was to introduce a dynamic of error and
revision into the publication of canonical texts that the imperial
government did not anticipate. The result is seen in the eventful
publication histories of K'ung Ying-ta's Wu-ching cheng-i KiENS
(compiled 630-33, revised 651-53) and the ThreeHistories.
The Wu-chingcheng-i (in 180 chuan) was published as a companion
to the Directorate imprints of the Classics. It provided subcommen-
taries on the ChouI, Shang shu, Mao Shih, Li-chi, and the Ch'un-ch'iu
Tso chuan. By most measures, the thirteen-year process of getting
the Wu-ching cheng-i into print was painful.141 K'ung Wei EL (d.
991; Director of Studies, i.e., Vice Chancellor of the Directorate of
Education), was put in charge of the project in 988. Soon after the
work started, T'ai-tsung was informed by another party that the
Five Dynasties Directorate edition of the Classics, which the Sung
Directorate had been reprinting, contained numerous textual
changes interpolated by the original editor, T'ien Min fft. This
was a matter of direct concern to K'ung Wei and his group, because

nated printing, together with the adjoining Fu-chien and Chiang-nan Circuits; see statistics
in Poon, "Books," p. 11, tab. 1.
14' The account that follows is based on YH: "1-wen," "Tuan-kung chiao Wu-ching cheng-

i" 43.15a-16a, Hsii ch'ang-pien 43.1b-2a (Hsien-p'ing l/l/chia-hsii), additional details in SS

431.20b-21a (K'ung Wei), 431.28b-29a (T'ien Min), 266.13b (Li Chih) and 431.31a-b
(Ts'ui 1-cheng W-iE, for information on Li Chih and Liu K'o-ming), 287.15a (Chao An-
jen 1i82), 431.6a (Hsing Ping), and 431.30b (Li Chuieh). Most documents are collected in
Chien-pen k'ao 2.13-28, which includes dispatch notes preserved in colophons to later
Southern Sung exemplars of the Mao Shih and Ch 'un-ch'iu Tso chuan editions (2.20-24); also
Ching-i k'ao 293.2b-3a. Elements of the sequence are reconstructed and discussed in Chiang
Yuian-ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ou hsiieh shih, pp. 93-94; Nait6 Torajir6 FSig,2kP,, "Ei'in hifu sonz6
S6kan tanhon Shoshoseigi kaidai" W i#g' 495 V MrFEA , SG 5.3 (1929),
reprinted in NaitoKonan zenshu PSMX ! , vol. 7 (Chikuma shob6, 1970), pp. 203-5, and
translated by Ch'ien Tao-sun Xg? as "Ying-yin Sung-k'an tan-pen Shang shu cheng-i chieh-
t'i" WFP5kftV-M: -'EEF3EAN , Kuo-li Pei-p'ing t'u-shu-kuan kuan-k'an giG *ffiI
4.4 (1930): 23-24. See also Pelliot, Les Debuts, p. 86, for corrections on Carter, Invention, pp.
83, and 96 n. 3, on this subject.
The original request for the authorization of the imprint is given in a memorial of 988
(Tuan-kung 1/3), preserved in a Southern Sung exemplar of Shang shu cheng-i (Shao-hsi period
[1190-94] or earlier); see Shang shu cheng-i (facsimile reprint of the edition held in the Imperial
Household Library [Kunaish6, Osaka: Mainichi Press, 1929; facsimile reprint, SPTK, 3d
ser.), la-b. This edition is discussed in Edgren, "Southern Song Printing," p. 26; Abe
Ryu-ichiKIM3-, "Nihonkoku kenzai S6-Gen hanponshi (keibu)" Fl Jgk4cit
, Shido bunko ronshi . 18 (1981): 17-20; and Thompson, Shen Tzu, pp. 70-
the Directorate Classics provided the lemmas (the citation texts) for
the cheng-i. K'ung Wei was ordered to work with another project edi-
tor, Li Chiieh * (d. 993; Erudite of the Directorate of Education),
to correct these texts, while work proceded on the cheng-i.'42 Between
988 and 994, the texts of the cheng-iwere one by one collated and cor-
rected (chiao-k'an ;Kfi) by different teams of specialists, the revisions
were reviewed through a recollation (hsiang-chiao #4M),the recolla-
tion was proofed (tsai-chiao 41K), and the definitive texts thus estab-
lished (chiao-ting Rt) were engraved.'43 The finished work was

142 On textual problems in the Five Dynasties Classics, see Sung-penTs'e-fu yiian-kuei,

"Ch'ou-chi, " 608.23a (criticized upon publication); SS 431.28b-29a (examples of errors); SS

431.3la-b (990, problem reported by Li Chiieh and revision ordered); and comments by
Ch'ao Kung-wu, n. 67. Yang I reports that after the revision was ordered, an argument en-
sued at court between K'ung Wei (a Northerner) and Tu Kao tLA, (938-1013) (a
Southerner) over whether Southern texts should be considered authoritative in making the
corrections, in which Tu Kao prevailed; quoted in Ching-i k'ao 293.3b; unattributed in
Chiang Shao-yui MPL?P (d. after 1145), comp., Huang-ch'aoshih-shihlei-yuanQAJ$t)fi;
see Hsin-tiaoHuang-ch'aolei-yuian ffirffiJtZ (Sung-fenshihts'ung-kanedition, 1st ser., 1911),
"Chiang-nan shu-chi, " 30. 10a.
143 The dates of completion for the editions (known as the "Ch'un-hua editions") are:

ChouI 988 (Tuan-kung 1/10), Shangshu 989 (Tuan-kung 2/10), Ch'un-ch'iuTso chuan990
(Ch'un-hua 1/10), Mao Shih992 (Ch'un-hua 3/4), Li-chi 994 (Ch'un-hua 5/5); YH: "1-wen, "
43.15a. The phrase used in each case is pan ch'engIRA. I yield to the traditional interpreta-
tion of this phrase as referring to the completion of the wood-block engraving. Yet I suspect
that pan ch'engmay refer instead to the completion of the copy-text to be used for the engrav-
ing. This is suggested by a comparison of phrases used to describe the collation and engraving
of texts in other sources. One example is found in Lin-t'ai ku-shih:"In Ta-chung hsiang-fu,
year 1 [1008], month 6, Examining Editor of the Academy for the Veneration of Literature
Tu Kao et al., verified the collation of Nan-huachen-ching(MMWAM), the engraving of
the block-text was completed ( and a copy was bestowed on each Grand Coun-
cilor. In year 5, month 4, the Academy for the Veneration of Literature presented the newly
printed Lieh-tzuch'ung-hsu chih-techen-ching BIJ+f . . . In the Ching-te period
the officials had been ordered to collate and correct their copies. At this time [1012], the en-
graved text was completed (iQ1:J)EHW), and gifts of gold and silk were bestowed on the colla-
tors, according to rank"; "Chiao-ch'ou," 2.12a. A second example is given by the wording
in a dispatch note appended to the 1011 Directorate imprint of the Li Shan a (d. 689) com-
mentary edition of Hsiao T'ung's & (501-3 1) Wen-hsiian hI_; "[The Directorate requests]
after the Directorate Lecturers have verified the collation of the fair [i.e., final] copy
transcribed the copy-text (4PA, 4C), and then carefully proofed (94M) it, that it [i.e., the 7
4c be sent to the Three Institutes to be engraved"; quoted in Chien-penk'ao 2.124. In this se-
quence, pan-pencan only refer to the copy-text.
The collation terms given in the description of the Wu-chingcheng-iprojectare all included in
the list of duty titles and descriptions of this project. Additional titles occur in dispatch notes
to other Directorate editions, collected in Chien-penk'ao and tabulated in Poon, "Books," p.
91, tab. 5. Texts intended for print distribution normally underwent a three-stage process of

presented to the throne in 994 with a posthumous memorial, which

K'ung Wei dictated on his deathbed.'44
A second project editor, Li Chih W? (Supervisor of the Direc-
torate of Education), then reported that the presented texts were
still full of errors. A recollation was ordered the same year (994), to
be conducted by new personnel with broader knowledge of the can-
on."45When the job was finished in 996, another group was ordered
to review the revised edition.'46 After this was done, incredibly, in
998, new reports of numerous errors in the print Classics and textual
problems in the revised Mao Shih and Shangshu subcommentaries led
to an order for further corrections. The order now came from Chen-
tsung, who inherited the problem upon his accession to the throne
that year.'47 The next year (999), the work was turned over to Hsing
Ping and the Directorate printing staff, who brought the project to
completion in 1001 . 148
Yet, soon after publication, the cycle of revisions began again. In
1005, after completing a complementary series of subcommentaries
on the rernaining seven classics, the Ch'i-ching shu-i -Ef -which
had been edited between 994 and 1001, and engraved between 1001
and 1005-the Directorate began to correct mistakes reported in cer-
tain texts and to recut blocks that were either faulty or damaged.'49

initial collation, review of the same, and a final inspection. In the case of this project, a few in-
dividuals participated in more than one stage.
144K'ung Wei succumbed to an illness, after the public exposure of his embezzlement of
more than 300,000 cash from the project funds. K'ung had repaid the money and been
pardoned by the Emperor before he died. His one regret was that he would not see the project
completed; SS 431.20b-2 1a.
YH: "I-wen, " 43.15b, Hsu ch'ang-pien43.lb-2a, SS 431.31a-b.
146 YH: "I-wen, " 43.15b.

147 The errors were reported by one Liu K'o-ming I a Single-Classic Specialist
from Ts'ai-chou :)h, otherwise unknown; YH: "I-wen," 43.15b; Hsu ch'ang-
pien 43.2a (Hsien-p'ing 1/1/ting-ch'ou);SS 431.3la-b. Ninety-four characters were subse-
quently changed.
YH: "I-wen," 43.15b-16a, SS 287.15a.
The Ch'i-chingshu-i project was initiated in 994 at Li Chih's request, as a sequel to the
supposedly concluded Wu-chingcheng-iproject; YH: "1-wen, " 43. 15b, SS 266. 13b, 287. 15a.
It included subcommentaries to the I-li, Chou-li, Kung-yangchuan,Ku-liang chuan, Lun-yii,
Hsiaoching,and Erh-ya.Hsing Ping, who was one of the principals in this project, was ordered
to correct the blocks after problems were reported in a review conducted by two other project
editors, Tu Kao and Sun Shih * (962-1033); for details, see Lin-t'ai ku-shih, "Chiao-
ch'ou," 2.10b-i la (Hsien-p'ing 4/9, banquet to celebrate completion of editing; Ching-te
This project was expanded in 1014 to include a general retraction
of all blocks of the classics and canonical subcommentaries found
to contain errors. Revised imprints were then published from cor-
rected blocks. From this time on, whenever errors were discovered
in the printed canon, the texts would be recollated and the blocks
corrected.'50 Then in 1021, because mounting damage and age
made further repairs on the blocks unwise, the classics were com-
pletely reengraved.'5'
It is unlikely that these revisions and corrections would have been
undertaken or published had the possibility for easy retraction not
been provided by the print medium. In the T'ang, projects to estab-
lish definitive texts of the classics had culminated in texts that were
fixed on stone stelae with monumental finality.'52 Once the texts
were engraved on stone, the subject of revisions was, for all practi-
cal purposes, closed. The medium, stone, signified (as one T'ang
writer put it) "an inerasable authority," which proclaimed that "a
hundred ages hence no adjustments [in the texts] need be made'";153
the idea of permanence was inseparable from the meaning of the
classics themselves. In taking advantage of the capabilities of print-
ing to improve texts, however, the Sung Directorate showed that,
for better or worse, definitive editions established on woodblocks
did not possess the finality of those engraved in stone. The associa-
tion of government printing with impermanent and endlessly revis-
able canonical texts was a new idea with productive consequences for
classical scholarship, which throve on the freedom afforded by fluid

2/9, corrections ordered), quoted in Chien-penk'ao 2.27; also YH: "I-wen," "Hsien-
p'ing chiao-ting Ch'i-chingshu-i," 43.17a-b, and "Ching-te ch'iin-shu t'ien pan, K'an-cheng
Ssu-ching," 43. 18a-b (Ching-te 2/9/hsin-hai); SS 266. 13b (Li Chih). As Weng Fang-kang
W7b' (1733-1818) has pointed out, the Hsu ch'ang-pienentry on this subject is defective.
Some titles are left out; see Ching-ik'ao pu-chengMaE(Yiieh-yat'ang ts'ung-shuedition, 6th
ser., 1850), 12.18b; cf. Hsu ch'ang-pien49.9b (Hsien-p'ing 4/9/ting-hai;date of presentation).
150 YH: "I-wen," 43.18b (Hsiang-fu 7/9).
YH: "I-wen," 43.18b (T'ien-hsi 5/5/hsin-ch'ou).
See McMullen, Stateand Scholars,pp. 97-100.
From a letter by the calligrapher Li Yang-ping :I C (fl. c. 765-80) proposing the en-
graving of a set of T'ang stone classics, "Shang Li ta-fu lun ku-chiian shu" :
-, in T'ang-wents'ui AF-7X, comp. Yao Hsiian ttZ (968-1020) (SPTK edition, 1st ser.),
81.7b; as translated in McMullen, Stateand Scholars,p. 99, with additions in brackets.
The case of the ThreeHistories project is equally instructive.'54 In
994 T'ai-tsung also ordered the collation of the Shih-chi (130 chuan),
Han shu (120 chuan), and Hou Han shu (90 chian)."55When the work
was finished, the copy was sent to Hang-chou where the blocks were
engraved, and in 998 the newly enthroned Chen-tsung was able to
bestow copies of the "newly printed ThreeHistories" on Princes and
Grand Councilors. 56 Only then was it was reported that the im-
prints were riddled with collation and printing errors, and during
the Hsien-p'ing period, a recollation was ordered, starting with the
Shih-chi.157This resulted in a revised edition in 1004, accompanied
by an embarrassing five-chuan corrigenda and a memorial blaming
the errors on the earlier production staff. " The disclosure prompted
an order for the recollation of the two Han histories, which was com-
pleted the following year. For the Han shu, the outcome was a six-
chuan corrigenda concerning 349 entries and correcting more than
3,000 textual errors (about one error per leaf, on average), present-
ed to the throne with the revised editions.'59 The printing blocks

154 The account that follows is based on Lin-t'ai ku-shih,"Chiao-ch'ou" 2.9b-lOa, 1 la-b,

14b-15a; YH: "I-wen," "Ch'un-hua chiao San-shih,Chia-yu chiao Ch'i-shih"43.16a-17a,

"Hsi-ning Shih-chengwen-tzu"43.21b, "Ching-yu Han shu k'an-wu" 49.21b-22a, "Chia-yu
ch'ung-chiao Han shu" 49.22b; SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 55, 4.1a-b (Ch'un-hua 5/7, Hsien-
p'ing, Ching-te 1), 4.1Oa (Hsi-ning 2/8/6); Shih-liieh2.13b-14b, 18b; Chien-penk'ao 2.48-55.
Most documents are quoted and discussed in Ozaki Yasushi, SeishiSo-Genban,pp. 9-11, 45-
61, see also pp. 161-3 10 on later Sung publication history; Kuratajunnosuke , WtJM1,
"Kanjo hanpoko" j%%7A5C, Tohogakuho30/** 27 (Mar. 1957): 256, 263-71, and
Chao T'ieh-han j "Pei Sung k'an Shih-chiwu-chung pan-pen pien-cheng" 1L5kt1TJK4_
2>H1k4~IZiE, Ta-lutsa-chih23.2 (July 1961): 35-40, 23.3 (Aug. 1961): 91-94. Note that
editions of the Hou Han shu did not include the "Treatises" by Ssu-ma Piao Iti (d. 305)
found in editions since the Southern Sung. These were first engraved separately in 1024;
SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 55, 4.7a (Ch'ing-hsing 1/11); Jung-chaissu-pi, "Fan Yeh Han chih,"
1.Ollb-12a; discussed in Ozaki Yasushi, p. 277.
155 YH: "I-wen," 43.17a (Hsien-p'ing 1/7/chia-shen).These imprints, which are known as

the "Ch'un-hua editions," were presented to the throne in 997 by Grand Councilor (tsai-
hsiang)Lu Tuan MM5(935-1000), according to a dispatch note once preserved in a Southern
Sung exemplar of Han shu, cited in T'ien-lulin-langshu-mu2. lb.
156 YH: "I-wen," 43.17a (Hsien-p'ing 1/7/chia-shen).
157 Chen-tsung considered the matter of the textual problems in the Ch'un-hua imprinits

serious enough to discuss with his Grand Councilors; Lin-t'ai ku-shih2. 1la. The revised edi-
tions that followed are known as the "Ching-te editions."
158 A "fu-chiao Shih-chik'an-wu wen-tzu," presented by Jen Sui f3{ et al. (Ching-te/l/
ping-wu); YH: "1-wen, " 43.16a, Lin-t'ai ku-shih2.1 lb.
159 Presented by Tiao K'an 3 {U(945-1013) (Ching-te 2/7/Jen-hsii), identified as a "fu-

chiao Ch'ien Han shu pan-pen k'an-cheng san-ch'ien-yii wen-tzu lu" in YH: "I-wen,"
were rectified, but the matter did not rest here. In 1034, Yu Ching
petitioned Jen-tsung for a comprehensive recollation of the Three
Histories to correct these imprints, as noted earlier.'60 Revised edi-
tions were submitted of the Han shu and Hou Han shu in 1035, and of
the Shih-chi, probably around the same time. 16' These were based on
a battery of alternative editions and collateral sources in the Imperi-
al Archives and other libraries in the Academy for the Veneration of
Literature; Yu Ching compiled a record of his contributions in cor-
rigenda totalling 45 chuan, including 30 chuan alone on the Han
shu.162The blocks were again recut. Even then, concerns about the

43.16a; cf. Lin-t'ai ku-shih2.1 lb quoting an excerpt from the accompanying memorial, sum-
marized in SHY: "Chih-kuan," 4. lb. The average is derived from calculating each half-leaf
as containing ten lines, with nineteen charactersper line, and a total of about 800,000 charac-
ters in Han shu, after Chao T'ieh-han, "Pei Sung k'an Shih-chi," p. 36. The average is similar
for corrections in the Ching-yu editions, as calculated by Chao. Chao concludes such an
average would not have warranted a complete reengraving of the work, but rather recuttings
of affected blocks.
160 Yii Ching first petitioned for a recollation of the Han shu, then the project was expanded

to include Shih-chiand Hou Han shu in consideration that "in the future there would not
longer be any old editions to correct [the imprints];" according to Lin-t'ai ku-shih2.14b;
Hsu ch'ang-pien117.10a (Ching-yu 2/9/jen-ch'en),YH: "I-wen," 43.19a, SS, 320.10b. (Shih-
liieh2.14b-15a credits Yu with proposing revisions of the two Han dynastic histories only.)
Chang Kuan was assigned to verify the corrections (k'an-ting). For other project staff, see
n. 106.
161 The revised imprints are known as the "Ching-yu editions." The Han shu revision is

also cited as "Ching-yu k'an-wu" edition, after Yii Ching's corrigenda. Yii's memorials ac-
companying the Han shuand Hou Han shuhave survived; both are dated Ching-yu 2/9, but no
dated record exists for the sister imprint of the Shih-chi.The two memorials are preserved re-
spectively at the end of the PNPS edition of Han shu, "CCh'ien Han mo," la-4b; and at the end
of the Jen-shoupen erh-shih-wu-shih fgt -+EI;t edition of Hou Han shu (facsimile reprint,
Taipei: Erh-shih-wu-shih pien-k'an kuan, 1955-56), 'Wu-yiuan chuan," 120.17a-18b. The
Hou Han shumemorial is translated in Edouard Chavannes, "Trois generaux chinois de la dy-
nastie des Han orientaux," TP, ser. 2, 7 (1906): 211-15.
162 YU Ching's corrigenda, San-shihk'an-wu, 45 chujan, is noted in YH: "I-wen," 43.17a
and described in the catalogue entry in Ch'ung-wentsung-mucited in n. 106. The laudatory
description in Ch'ung-wentsung-musays that Yu consulted "several hundred" sources. The
San-shihk'an-wu probably included his Han shu k'an-wu, 30 chujan,cited in YH: "I-wen,"
49.22a (from Kuo-shihchih SJii*:) and 22b; Hsii ch'ang-pien117.10a; also Lin-t'ai ku-shih
2.15a, quoted in Chien-penk'ao 2.53. Curiously, Kuo-shihchihstates that Yiu's Han shuk'an-wu
was criticized for omissions and errors, and the same is implied in the Lin-t'ai ku-shihaccount.
Figures for corrections in the two Han histories are preserved in Yiu's accompanying memori-
als (see n. 161). For the Han shu: 741 characters were added, 212 deleted, 1,303 changed. For
minor discrepancies between this and other sources concerning the last figure, variously given
as 1,339 and 1,309, see Kuratajunnosuke, "Kanio hanpok6," p. 267, and Shih-liieh2.14b.
For the Hou Han shu: 512 characters were added, 143 deleted, and 411 changed.
accuracy of the Han history imprints persisted. In the 1060s, the
two Han histories were again recollated and corrected. A revised
imprint of the Han shu was presented to Shen-tsung 4' in 1069.163
A corrigenda on the Hou Han shu was also submitted by Liu Pin to
Ying-tsung J (r. 1064-67)-this project reportedly having been
launched in 1062 after Jen-tsung found an error in Yii Ching's im-
print. 164
That improved versions of the histories were initiated by four suc-
cessive rulers suggests that establishing a correct print-text had
come to be regarded as a generational duty. Compiling or rectifying
a history had previously been considered a one-time dynastic respon-
sibility. However, the treatment of the histories fits the pattern of
revisions seen in other early Directorate works. For example, the
engraving of the Penal Code (Hsing t'ung RJ) in 963 was followed
in 966 by a request from the Court of Judicial Review (Ta-li ssu)
for recuts to correct various print errors.165The completion of Ch'i-
ching shu-i in 1001 was followed four years later by an order to
correct errors in three of the subcommentaries (those on the Lun-
yii, Hsiao ching, and Erh-ya), and the Shang shu cheng-i.166 A rhyme
dictionary, Yiin-liiehA (engraved in 1007, with a supplement distri-
buted in 1011), compiled to assist examination candidates, was crit-
icized for causing confusion. The Directorate was obliged to
produce a new version, Li-puyfin-lfieh -M (1037), making its earlier

163 A Hsin-chiaoHan shuimprint, 50 ts'e, presented by Chao Pien iltt (1008-84) (Hsi-ning

2/8/6), collated by Ch'en Shih 1W (Assistant Director of the Palace Library), and recollated
by Ou-yang Hsiu between 1061 and 1069; YH: "I-wen, " 49.22b, 43.16b; SS 329.20a (Ch'en
was ordered to collate the work at home while observing mourning for his mother). The
revised edition was accompanied by Ch'en's corrigenda, Shih-cheng wen-tzu,7 chiian;YH: "I-
wen," 43.21b. This edition is known as the "Hsi-ning" or "Chia-yu edition."
164 Descriptions of Liu Pin's work are found in the catalogue entry on his TungHan k'an-wu

in Chiin-chaitu-shuchihchiao-cheng7.304; YH: "I-wen," "Ching-yu Han shuk'an-wu," 49.22a;

Shih-lueh2.18b, 19b-20a. The sources disagree about whether the collation was authorized
toward the end of the Chia-yu period, in 1062, byJen-tsung, after the Emperor discovered an
error in Yu Ching's imprint, or the beginning of the Chih-p'ing period, in 1064, by Ying-
tsung. Liu Pin was one of seven editors assigned to the project, but when the others were
transferredto new posts in the early Chih-p'ing period, he was left with sole responsibility for
completing the work. He expressed the unpopular opinion that all versions of the Han shu,
both in palace and private collections, were unreliable save his; Shih-luieh 2.19b-20a.
165 SHY: "Hsing-fa," 1.1a-b (Chien-lung 4/2/5, 4/8/2; Ch'ien-te 4/3/18).
166 See n. 149.
imprint obsolete.167
Print publication, by its public nature, evoked public criticism.
The government was thereby exposed to unprecedented scrutiny of
its scholarly standards, and the editors, whose names were pub-
lished with the accompanying dispatch notes; were subjected to the
judgment of their peers at large. The Directorate was sensitive to
this situation, as seen in its readiness to acknowledge errors and cor-
rect them in future imprints. Scholars who now found their reputa-
tions indelibly linked to their performance in print also took pains to
distance themselves from compromised projects, or to disown un-
authorized publications. While it is true that printing could help cre-
ate stars-wood-block portraits of Ssu-ma Kuang were sold for dis-
play in Sung homes along with copies of his Tzu-chih t'ung-chien168-
the Five Dynasties statesman T'ien Min was remembered unkindly
in Sung sources as the editor who first introduced interpolations
into the texts of the Directorate Classics and then disgraced himself
by embezzling ten million cash from the subsequent book sales;169
and in the Crow Terrace poetry case, Su Shih was convicted of al-
lowing seditious poems to be printed commercially.170 Other authors
therefore took pains to control and monitor the publication of their
writings. Thus Chu Hsi thought it a worthwhile investment, despite
his chronically troubled finances, to attempt to squelch an unauthor-
ized imprint of some of his works by an academy official in Wu-
chou Wf1, by offering to buy up the entire stock of copies from the

167 On the problems with the original edition, see colophon quoted in Chien-pen k'ao 2.36-
38; SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 55, 4.4a.
168 See Chu Hsi, comp., San-ch'aoming-ch'en yen-hsinglu P > (SPCK edition,
1st ser.), 7.40b. Chu reports that some of the engravers became wealthy from the sales. Buy-
ers came to K'ai-feng from all parts of the country to purchase them. People hung them in
their homes and made offerings to the portrait at mealtimes.
169 See Sung-penTs'e-fuyiian-kuei,"Ch'ou-chi, " 608.23a; SS 431.28b-29a.
See Charles Hartman, "Poetry and Politics in 1079: The Crow Terrace Poetry Case of
Su Shih, " ChineseLiterature: Essays,Articles,Reviews, 12 (1990): 15-44. The imprints were in-
cluded among the case exhibits, and the deposition, indictment, and final notice of conviction
all mention the fact that the works were printed for sale; ibid., p. 20 n. 17. Hartman con-
tinues his discussion of the case in "The Inquisition Against Su Shih: His Sentence as an Ex-
ample of Sung Legal Practice," JAOS 113.2 (1993) 228-43.
171 See Chu Hsi, 'Ta Yang chiao-shou" :%$ftt, Hui-an chi, 26.5b-7b. The imprints in-
cluded Hsi-mingfi0t, among other works.
Sometimes individual scholars did not wait for the Directorate to
correct its work. Chang Pi CC Liu Pin-independently and in col-
laboration with Liu Ch'ang and Liu Feng-shih-and Sung Ch'i
were among those who compiled their own corrections on the Han
history imprints. Portions of their work were incorporated into later
editions.172 Collation notes and corrigenda were also compiled for
other Directorate productions, and toward the end of the century
some of these began to make their way into print through private
publishers. Editors from the last decades of the eleventh century
identify a range of problems in early Directorate publishing. Wu
Chen - in his Hsin Tang shu chiu-miu r (which was pri-
vately printed between 1091 and 1094, and presented to the throne
in 1094) lists eight sources of error in the 1060 Directorate imprint
of the new History of the T'ang, which had been compiled over a six-
teen-year period, under the direction of several editors, concluding
with Sung Ch'i and Ou-yang Hsiu.'73 Wu Chen cites the following

172 Chang Pi's work took the form of a commentary on a corrigenda to the Han shu, com-

posed during the Ch'un-hua period when he was a Compiler in the Historiography Institute;
some of Chang's notes are found at the end of chiian30, 40, 49, and 65, in the PNPS Han shu.
The Han history specialist Liu Pin collaborated with Liu Ch'ang and Liu Feng-shih in a
work known as SanLiu Han shupiao-chu_ 6 chiian;notes from this work are cited
in the Huang-Liu edition (see n. 108). Liu Pin also compiled a corrigenda on the Hou Han
shu, entitled TungHan k'an-wu, 1 or 4 chuian,in the course of his authorized revision during
the Chia-yu and Chih-p'ing periods; see n. 164. A corrigenda on the Han shu, entitled Hsi
Han k'an-wu, 1 chiian,is also attributed to him. Sung Ch'i compiled collation notes on the Han
shu during the Ching-yu period; see n. 108. Notes credited to this work are also cited in the
Huang-Liu edition.
Important bibliographic records on the corrigenda include descriptions in the imperial
library catalogue, Chung-hsing kuan-koshu-mu(comp. 1178), comp. Ch'en K'uei et al., quoted
in YH: "I-wen," 49.22a, and in the reconstituted Chung-hsing Kuan-koshu-muchi-k'aoV^,
4i comp. Chao Shih-wei i Ku-i shu-lu ts'ung-chi, no. 4 (Peiping: Kuo-li
Pei-p'ing t'u-shu-kuan, 1933), 2.4a-b; in Chuin-chaitu-shu chih chiao-cheng7.303-4 (cf.
WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 27, 200.1675c-6a); and in Chih-chaishu-lu chieh-t'i4.101 (the
three Lius' work only, here titled San Liu Han shu); also listings in SS "I-wen chih," 203.2a
(Chang here identified as Chang Pi 2X); and a notice of Liu Pin's TungHan k'an-wuin Wang
Ch'eng ]Eif (d. ca. 1200), comp., Tung-tushih-liiehVM$M (comp. 1186), ed. Miao
Ch'uan-sun (Huai-nan shu-chiu, 1883), 76.3b. Useful discussions are found in Kuratajun-
nosuke, "Kanjohanpok6," p. 274; Loewe, "Editions of the Ch'ien-Han-shu," pp. 166-67;
and entries by Ueda Sanae and Rafe de Crespigny in A Sung Bibliography(Bibliographiedes
Sung), initiated by Etienne Balazs and ed. Yves Hervouet (Hong Kong: Chinese University
Press. 1978), pp. 64-66.
173 Sung Ch'i had served as an editor from the beginning. Ou-yang Hsiu joined in 1054.

For a detailed list of editorial staff, see Ch'ien Ta-hsi 7kHk (1728-1804), "Hsiu T'ang shu
problems: no single editor was given full responsibility for the entire
work; no schedule was set to complete the work in a timely manner,
with the result that staff came and went as the project dragged on;
editorial principles and procedures were not spelled out in advance,
and the work was not properly reviewed at the end; editors relied
too heavily on unreliable sources such as hsiao-shuo 'JM; old T'ang
sources were used uncritically; the contributing editors did not un-
derstand the essentials of good historiography and each simply did
as he saw fit; collators lacked a sense of professional ethics and never
scrutinized the accuracy of the sources cited but merely rubber-
stamped the editors' work.174As Wu Chen indicates, project organi-
zation was a basic problem. The use of a large staff and the lack of
well-developed editorial procedures uniformly enforced, appears to
have been a common combination.
Other problems were caused by the uneven quality, training, and
use of staff members assigned to editorial work. Most staff members
in the Academies and Institutes (Kuan-ko, which after 1082 were
absorbed into the Palace Library) who were assigned to collation
posts were selected, screened, and appointed by the Ministry of Per-
sonnel (Li-pu). They came to such positions variously, through
recommendations, seniority, or through their performance in the
civil service examinations.175 Additional officers were appointed on
an ad hoc basis for specific projects. The duty assignments for colla-
tors began to be systematized after the great palace fire of 1015,
which destroyed the libraries of the Academy for the Veneration of

shih-ch'en piao" I I, ff., included in the prefatory matter of Ch'ien's edition of Hsin
T'ang shu chiu-miu(Chih-pu-tsuchai ts'ung-shu,15th ser., ca. 1792; facsimile reprint, 1921).
174 See "Hsin T'angshu chiu-miu hsui," Hsin T'angshuchiu-miu,2a-5b. Wu Chen also com-
piled a corrigenda on the Directorate imprint of the Historyof theFiveDynasties,entitled Wu-tai
shihtsuan-chi; According to Wang Ming-ch'ing, Wu Chen composed the critiques
because he had been disappointed at having been excluded from the Tang shuproject by Ou-
yang Hsiu on account of his youth and embittered by a provincial career which followed. He
printed both privately in the Yuan-yu period; Hui-chulu, 2.35a-b. See entries for both cor-
rigenda in WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao," 27, 200.1676a-b (Hsin Tang shu chiu-miuhere titled
T'angshupien-cheng),1677a-b; Chuin-chai tu-shuchihchiao-cheng 7.305-6 (Tang shupien-cheng);
Chih-chaishu-luchieh-t'i4.101-2; and entry by Tonami M.amoru in SungBibliography,p. 67.
175 See Ou-yang Hsiu, "Yu lun kuan-ko ch'ii shih cha-tzu" R&Mrli:3:llf (1065), in
Tsou-ichi 18, Ou-yangkungchi 114.8b-1 lb; and the related exchange between Ou-yang Hsiu
and Ying-tsung on this matter in SS 164.6b, interlinear note. For a discussion of general
staffing and behavioral problems, see Chiang Yiuan-ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ou hsiiehshih, pp. 156-58.
Literature and most of the Imperial Archives. During the next ten
years, numerous staff members were recruited to reconstitute these
collections by collating and copying works that had survived in
other palace holdings or been solicited from local government
authorities and private collectors.176 The performance of collators
was judged largely by their ability to meet daily quotas. Though the
quotas fluctuated, the Sung norm was twenty-one full sheets (chih
A) of codex leaves a day-that is, as much as double the T'ang
average."77 Such a pace did not allow for thoroughgoing compari-

176 See Lin-t'ai ku-shih"Shu-chi," 2.5b-6b, and "Chiao-ch'ou," 2.13a-b. (chuian 2 of this
work provides the most informative account of the development of the editorial bureaucracy
in the imperial library); Hui-chulu 1. 14a-15a.
177 See Huang-ch'aolei-yuian 31.7b, no. 21. Twenty-one chih a day was the old Northern
Sung quota. This is confirmed by quotas cited in SHY: "Chih-kuan" (ts'e 70) for the Yuan-
yu period: 21 full chiha day; 18.8b (Yulan-yu 2, cited as the "the old system"; A "month"
here is a copyist error for l "day"); 18.la (Yiian-yu 5/12/18), 18.12a (Yiian-yu 6/6); also
10 pan ji a day for part-time collators, that is, about half the full-time quota; 18.1 lb (Yulan-
yu 6/2/17). (SS 164.7a reports that the Ministry of Rites set collation quotas in Yulan-yu3/12,
but gives no details.) The work was presented at the end of the month. A refinement of this
system is seen in the work schedule for a project in 1132 to collate new acquisitions from a pri-
vate library. Palace Library collators were expected to prepare 21 chih a day; a record was
kept of daily performance; every ten days a report was sent to the library director; and every
month a sealed report was also submitted to the director, probably for transmission to the
Department of State Affairs; SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 55, 4.13a-b (Shao-hsing 2/4/14); Nan
Sungkuan-kolu, "Chu-ts'ang," 3.la-b; see Winkelman, "Imperial Library," pp. 32-33.
T'ang quotas for Palace Library collators were both lower and more flexible. For the initial
collation (ch'u-chiao03J) of "old texts with many errors," the base quota was 8, 9, or 10 chih
a day, depending on the number of daylight hours at that time of year (8 chihduring months
10-1; 9 during months 2-3 and 8-9; and 10 during months 4-7). Adjustments were then
made as follows: for texts "with few errors," add 2 more chiha day; for texts with no inter-
linear annotations, add 2 more chiha day; for recollation (tsai-chiaoNR, i.e. proofing) add 3
more chih a day; for correcting orthography, [add] 3 [more] chih a day (the character In
"add" is missing here); SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 70, 18.1 a-b.
On the measures chihand pan: Chihrefers to a standard sheet of paper. The pre-Sung size is
estimated by Tsien to be about 24 (width) x 41-48.5 cm (length); BambooandSilk, pp. 153-
54. Dimensions of Tun-huang sheets in the Pelliot collection range from 26 x 39 cm (third
century) to 30 X 45 cm (T'ang). Annotations were often written on the back. For details, see
Jean-Pierre Drege, "Papiers de Dunhuang: essaie d'analyse morphologique des manuscrits
chinois dates," TP, ser. 2, 67.3-5 (1981): 305-60. Zurcher estimates that the average "stan-
dard sheet" used in setting requirements for T'ang Buddhist clerical examinations contained
about 500 characters; "Buddhism and Education," p. 43 n. 54. Chihis used in this sense as a
copying unit for the Five Dynasties Directorate imprint of the Classicsin Wu-taihui-yao8.2b,
quoted in Ching-ik'ao293. la. This term was still used in the Sung, but often as a measure for
codex leaves, as in the above quotas. A further example of this Sung usage is given by the im-
poverished scholar Yuan Chiun . who set himself a quota of copying 50 chiha day from
sons of multiple versions of an entire work. As Sung Min-ch'iu
reported in a memorial of 1071, the most that collators could be ex-
pected to achieve was to compare the document against one other
text. If the document was a transcription, that meant proofing it
against the original. (If the document was a unicus, the sole witness
of a work, that meant collating the work against itself, that is, revis-
ing it to correct internal inconsistencies and other apparent errors.)
As a result, Sung said, the repeated collation and copying of books in
the palace libraries had resulted in expanded collections of texts of
ever lower quality.178 In the Chia-yu period, attempts were made to
improve the system: better supervision of collators was proposed;'79
a new echelon of officers, Compiler-Collators (pien-chiao kuan 3Wf),

borrowed books; Ch'i Ch'eng-han JW*N (1565-1628), Tan-shengt'angts'ang-shuyiieh4.M

i~*9 (comp. 1613) (Ou-hsiangling shih edition), 1Ob.
In the context of collation quotas, pan refers to a leaf of two pages. In Han times, pan meant
a wooden writing-board or slip. From this use, it also came to mean "a piece of writing." Fi-
nally, the term was used for a wooden printing-block, which consisted of such a one-leaf unit.
In the Sung, pan was used as a measure for both manuscript leaves and printed leaves in this
format. The number of characters on a leaf varies according to the number of lines per page
and the number of characters (large main-text and small interlinear-annotation characters)
per line, but an amply spaced large-character imprint with 19-20 main-text characters per
line and 10-13 lines per half-leaf could carry 380-520 characters, or more if with interlinear
annotations. Actual character counts for individual leaves and total character counts for the
work are sometimes recorded in Sung imprints, the former on the top of the center column
(pan hsin&4i) of the leaf, and the latter (less frequently) in a colophon at the end of the work.
For an inventory of such counts in different leaf formats, see Chiang Piao a_a, (1860-99),
Sung Yuanpen hang-kopiao 5kTC*f4 (Hunan, 1897). For a tabulation of counts in works
from the Ting T family Shan-penshu-shihA*-4 collection, see Chao Hung-ch'ien i
"Sung Yuan pen hang-ko piao," Chung-yang ta-hsiiehkuo-hsiieht'u-shu-kuannien-k'an4 k:
gff* 4 I4 (1928): 1-34. For Sung imprints preserved inJapan, see Nagasawa Kikuya,
"(Honpo shoken) S6hon gy6kakuhy6 shok6" ; NagasawaKikuya
chosakushut, 3:298-314.
178 See memorial quoted in SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 70, 18.3b-4a (Hsi-ning 4/10/29);

WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 1, 174.1509a-b, paraphrased in Lin-t'ai ku-shih, "Shu-chi,"

2.9a. Sung Min-ch'iu called for reform of this practice. He proposed comprehensive compara-
tive collation of all source texts in the libraries, working up from extant pre-Han texts listed
in the Han shu "Treatise on Bibliography." This would have been a huge undertaking.
The proposal was not accepted. A proposal in 1132 by the Assistant Director of the Palace Li-
brary, Wang Ang -EjM(b. 1090), for the collation of 2,678 chiianof works acquired from
Tseng Min's R library seeks permission to allow collators to revise and restore badly dam-
aged or error-riddentexts by consulting one or more other versions. The proposal implies that
such a measure was reserved for problem cases. It was accepted; see n. 177.
179 See Ou-yang Hsiu, "Ch'i hsieh Pi-ko shu ling kuan-chih chiao-ch'ou cha-tzu" t;4

fi t: (1057), in Tsou-ichi 15, Ou-yangkungchi 111.6b-7b.

was created to take over certain collation tasks, while the old quota
for rank-and-file staff was temporarily suspended;'80 and to raise the
quality of editing, a seven-year program for developing and promot-
ing senior collators was implemented."8' But during the Yiian-yu
period, in late 1090, the quota of 21 chih a day was reinstituted. This
measure was intended to restore discipline among the huge collation
staff in the Palace Library.'82 Although exceptions were granted,
this quota remained the norm in the Southern Sung.'83
Thus in the Southern Sung, rushed collation work is also cited in
complaints about Directorate editions. A good example is criticism
of textual incoherencies in the early Sung literary encyclopedia, Wen-
yuan ying-hua @fp,* 1,000 chuan, compiled by Li Fang et al. be-
tween 982 and 987, and subsequently enlarged, rectified, and re-
edited in 1007, and then corrected and re-edited twice more in
1009.184The work was never printed, but it survived both the palace
180 Huang-ch'ao lei-yuian 31.7b, no, 21 (quota discontinued with the institution of the
Compiler-Collator Service); Ou-yang Hsiu, "Yu lun Kuan-ko ch'u shih cha-tzu" 7_j-4m
WTh? 1IJf (1065), in Tsou-i chi 18, Ou-yang kung chi 114. 1Ob-I la (eight full-time Compiler-
Collators in the Academies and Institutes). Compiler-Collators are first mentioned in connec-
tion with a project in 1059-60 to edit and restore fragmentary works listed in the Ch'ung-
wen tsung-mu catalog. Four were appointed. Just prior to this, four full-time senior editors
had been appointed to restore books that had suffered from the depredations of borrowers
(many books were not returned or returned incomplete); Lin-t'ai ku-shih, "Shu-chi," 2.7b.
This number probably makes up the eight referred to by Ou-yang Hsiu. Note that the office
of Compiler-Collators is listed in SS 164. lOa-b only under the Historiography and Veritable
Records Institute (Kuo-shih shih-lu yuian).
181 The terms of service were two years as pien-chiao (Compiler-Collator), then four years
as chiao-k'an 1KJJ (Collator-Corrector), and one year as a scheduled chiao-li . (Collator-
Orderer) before being released to another position; Ou-yang Hsiu, "Yu lun Kuan-ko ch'u
shih cha-tzu, " Ou-yang kung chi 114. 1Ob-1 la. Four years had been the normal term for chiao-
k 'an assignments before promotion to the rank of chiao-li, see Lin-t 'ai ku-shih, "Chiao-ch'ou,"
2.13a-b (Ch'ao Tsung-ch'ueh A7I3 precedent).
182 As proposed by Ts'en Hsiang-ch'iu t (fl. 1086-94) (Palace Censor); see SHY
"Chih-kuan, " ts'e 70. 18.1 la (Yuan-yu 5/12/18).
183 Exceptions are noted in SHY "Chih-kuan," ts'e 70, 18.12a (Yiian-yu 6/6) and SS
164.7a (approval of a request by Su Shih to reduce the collation quota in the Palace Library
by half during the hottest season of the summer, 1091); also Huang-ch'ao lei-yuan 31.7b-8a,
no. 21 (the Department of State Affairs [Shang-shu sheng] may follow its own regulations,
1096). For the Southern Sung, see n. 177.
184 The original Northern Sung compilation is documented in YH: "I-wen," "Yung-hsi
Wen-yuanying-hua," 54.16b-18a; SHY: "Chih-kuan, " ts'e 55, 4.3b-4a (Ching-te 4/8), 5. lb,
and discussed in detail in Hanabusa Hideki tFR*#t, "Bun 'en eiga no hensan" t3*#O
rm, Tohogakuho 19 (Nov. 1950): 116-35. Large groups of editors were involved, as was the
case with the three other encyclopedias (T'ai-p'ingyu-lan, T'ai-p'ing kuang-chi t+WC [981],
fire of 1015 and the Jurchen confiscation of the Palace Library at the
fall of the Northern Sung. The copy that was preserved in the
Southern Sung Imperial Archives was condemned by Chou Pi-ta FM,
&90t(1126-1204) as being so flawed as to be "unreadable."185 Dur-
ing the reign of Hsiao-tsung Wg (r. 1163-89), palace collators were
assigned to correct it. Chou Pi-ta was not satisfied with the results.
Upon retiring from court, he decided to re-edit the text privately,
recruiting P'eng Shu-hsia 3AY (fl. 1192-1205) as his collaborator. In
his preface to the new edition, engraved between 1201 and 1204,
Chou charged that the earlier palace project had been compromised
by work quotas and unqualified staff:
At that time, there were ten to twenty staff members assigned as palace Collator-
Correctors, all of them apprentice copyists with limited training in letters. They
were paid monthly meal allowances (i.e., wages rather than official salaries), and af-
ter several years were to be promoted to the rank of Military Commandant. They
were posted to this [project] to fulfill their work quota. Very often, they recklessly
erased [characters] and added annotations [giving the "corrected" reading] to
make a show of having done collation. Then they handed in the work to the Imperi-
al Archives. Yet later generations will accept this as a definitive text.186

and Ts'e-fuyzan-kuei), compiled around the same time; seeJohn Winthrop Haeger, "The Sig-
nificance of Confusion: The Origins of the T'ai-pingyii-lan, " JA OS 88.3 (1968): 401-10. SHY:
"Chih-kuan," 4.3b-4a reports that the corrected edition was destroyed in the palace fire of
1015, but the work was not lost. It survived in some form or other in one or more copies,
which were likely to have been deposited in the Lung-t'u ko AgtM and T'ai-ch'ing lou li-
brary collections, in compliance with a copying policy established in 999; see Lin-t'ai ku-
shih, "Shu-chi," 2.4a; YH: "I-wen," "Ching-te T'ai-ch'ing lou ssu-pu shu-mu," 52.34a;
Hui-chu lu 1.14b.
185 See Chou Pi-ta, " Wen-yiianying-hua hsui," P'ing-yuan hsui-kao+N3OA (Lu-ling Chou I-
kuo Wen-chung-kungchi edition, 1st ser., 1848) 15.5b-7a, esp. 6a-b. The same work is quoted
from Chung-hsing kuan-ko shu-mu in the introductory matter of the Ming edition of Wen-yuan
ying-hua (1566-67; facsimile reprint of a Wan-li [1573-1619] edition, Peking: Chung-hua
shu-chiu, 1966), 2a-4a (in Chung-hsing kuan-ko shu-mu chi-k'ao, 5.12a); also SHY: "Chih-
kuan," ts'e 56, 5.2a-3b. Hanabusa Hideki believes that Chou's palace manuscript was a
conflation edition combining distinctly different texts descended from the earlier revisions.
The magnitude and nature of the textual problems cannot be not satisfactorily attributed to
faulty collation work or errors in the original source texts; "Bun'en eiga," pp. 130-31. On col-
lation problems, see also Kuo Po-kung JI{JtAt, Sung ssu-ta-shu k'ao ; (1940;
reprint, Taipei: T'ai-wan Shang-wu yin-shu-kuan, 1967), pp. 90-4; and entry by Chan
Hing-ho in Sung Bibliography, pp. 442-43.
186 " Wen-yuanying-hua hsui," P'ing-yiian hsu-kao 15.6a; Wen-yuanying-hua 3b; SHY: "Chih-

kuan," 5.2a-b. Chou's criticisms are echoed in the preface to P'eng Shu-hsia's Wen-yuan
ying-hua pien-cheng (Dec. 1204), see (facsimile reprint of Wu-ying tien chu-chenpan shu edition) in
Wen-yiianying-hua, p. 5255.
The mistakes that Chou Pi-ta and P'eng Shu-hsia discovered in the
course of re-editing the work were presented by P'eng in his Wen-
yuianying-huapien-chengMM, 10 chuian,a study of twenty categories of
errors in the Wen-yiuanying-hua, printed privately after Chou's
death. 187P'eng has been much admired for his rejection of conjectur-
al emendations, his practice of emending texts on the basis of evi-
dence provided by source documents, and his policy of document-
ing his collations fully, so as to preserve a record of the earlier state
of the text. These qualities were later to be associated with Ch'ing
evidential scholarship.
The works by Wu Chen, Chou Pi-ta and P'eng Shu-hsia exempli-
fy the higher standards of textual criticism and text production that
were evolving outside the court. That the court fell short in this
regard may seem puzzling, given its great resources, but a differ-
ence in editorial values accounts for some of the disparity. The aim
of imperial editing was to present a model text, not to provide a read-
er with the means to construct his own. This editorial stance left lit-
tle leeway for doubt or indecision in treating textual discrepancies.
The editor's job was to present the single correct text, selected from
a set of mistaken alternatives. To record and weigh the excluded al-
ternatives in the form of scholarly annotations was irrelevant and
even contrary to this purpose: recording illegitimate readings in a
model text could well help to legitimize them, opening up the
prospect that at some future date the errors might be reargued or
miscopied back into the work. Private editors could, of course,
adopt the same orientation toward a model text, but they were not
compelled to do so. Rather, since private productions lacked the
authority of court-sponsored works, private editors had cause to de-
velop compensating strategies of documentation. To justify their
chosen readings and, at the same time, display their personal erudi-
tion, they could cite and refute alternative proposals. Private edi-
tors, unencumbered by imperial editing conventions, could afford
to do what court editors could not, namely, to register doubts, ad-
vance nuanced arguments, or leave textual uncertainties prudently
unresolved, presenting the reader with the alternatives and inviting

In Wen-yuanying-hua,
pp. 5255-301; see entry by Donald Holzman in SungBibliography,
pp. 443-44.
him to judge according to the shallowness or depth of his own
scholarship. These were editorial policies better suited to an age of
skepticism. Thus, the colophon to a late twelfth-century commercial
imprint of the Han shu invites readers who discover errors to send in
letters of correction to the editor, who pledges to remedy any
deficiencies in the next reprint-an option unthinkable for his Direc-
torate counterpart. 188

Print errors.One of the vexations of the new book culture was the
hazard of errors in print texts. Manuscript texts were not, of course,
free from errors, but since each manuscript was unique, the impact
of errors occurring in any single manuscript was limited to a com-
paratively small circle of readers: the owner, other readers who
might obtain access to it, and, among these, the even fewer number
of readers who might go to the trouble of copying it and thereby
propagate some or all of the earlier mistakes-while, in all likeli-
hood, adding new ones. Printing ensured that textual innovations,
both accidental and deliberate, would be disseminated more quickly
and widely than ever imaginable in manuscript transmission. In the
early Sung, a proposal to switch from hand-copying to printing for
government calendars thus met with the objection, "If one copy is
wrong, then one hundred thousand will be wrong. 189 With print
publication, lapses in transmission that were beyond the power of
any single individual to forestall or remedy were suddenly exposed
to the public. Moreover, the complexity of print production meant
that the source of the error was often obscure. The mistake might be
the fault of the author, of an editor, collator, or block engraver, or
of the printer. Blame was likely to be ascribed to the production
staff, the newcomers to the tradition, upon whom print-oriented liter-
ati increasingly depended for the transmission of their culture. The
phenomenon of print errors must have sensitized Sung scholars to

188 From Huang Shan-fu's colophon to an exemplar of the Huang-Liu edition (Ching-

yiuanperiod, Chien-an), held in the Matsuyama Municipal Library. For a facsimile reproduc-
tion of the colophon leaf with a transcription, see Ozaki Yasushi, SeishiSo-Genban,pp. 261-
189 See Hsuich'ang-pien102.18b (T'ien-sheng 21101/hsin-ssu), interlinear note appended to
report of a similar objection to a request for the printing of pardons (she-shuk). Both re-
quests were granted on the condition that not a single print-error be made.
the ever-present possibility of fallibility in transmission, encourag-
ing them to reason out new relationships with texts, which could be
rationalized in philosophical stances, and encouraging new devo-
tion to the sciences of epigraphy and philology, in support of the
quest for "true texts" that would be more reliable than Directorate
imprints. The print problem was not the sole cause of these develop-
ments, but it is part of the matrix from which they spring.
The assurances of textual accuracy found in prefaces and colo-
phons to local government, private, and commercial imprints testify
to the concerns of readers on this point. Such claims as "meticulous-
ly collated, absolutely no textual errors" (ching chia chiao-chengping
wu o-miu M1MKIEtL-4, and "not a single wrong character" (wu i
wu-tzu ch'a-o I.4W-fAR) occur frequently enough in printer's colo-
phons to arouse suspicions that they are but a promise of an ideal all
too rarely achieved."90They also tell us that textual accuracy in im-
prints was by no means taken for granted. As Poon says, despite the
most conscientious efforts by editors and printers, the "unlikelihood
of absolute accuracy in printed texts" was generally recognized.
"Errors are common in print texts," Chou Hui says resignedly,
paraphrasing Sung Shou, and then explains, "This is probably be-
cause collating books is like sweeping dust: it springs up even as you
sweep. ''l92Once in circulation, moreover, the errors gained a public

See colophons to the Southern Sung imprints Tsuan-t 'u hu-chu Liu-tzu ch 'ian-shu * W
, +@ *, in T'ien-lu lin-lang shu-mu hou-pien 5. lb-2a; Hsin-tsuan men-mu Wu-ch'enyin-chu fi
g g in&,
B T'ien-lu lin-lang shu-mu hou-pien 5.7a; Tsuan-t'u hu-chu Yang-tzu Fayen G-#
, in P'ing-chin-kuan chien-ts'ang chi shu-chi 1.4b; and facsimile reproductions of colophon
leaves in Chung-kuopan-k'o t'u-lu from Pao-p'u Tzu, pl. 12; Hou Han shu chu, pl. 161, Hsin chiao-
cheng Lao-ch'uan hsien-sheng wen-chi f pl. 174. The Chung-kuopan-k'o t'u-lu
examples are shown and translated in Ming-sun Poon, "The Printer's Colophon in Sung Chi-
na, 960-1279," Library Quarterly43.1 (Jan. 1973): 39-52, trans. as [P'an], "Sung k'o-shu
k'o-chi chih yen-chiu" 9 J"dJ.Rf, Ch'ung-chi hsiao-k'an bt43.fIJ 56 (June 1974):
191 Poon, "Books," p. 76. While Poon's discussion (pp. 76-77) does emphasize the care
taken to collate texts in printing and the quality achieved in non-commercial imprints, the tex-
tual accuracy of Sung imprints is a common target of Ch'ing critics opposed to the antiquari-
an idealization of Sung editions; see representative comments in Shu-lin ch'ing-hua, "Sung
k'o-shu tzu-chu pu chin t'ung ku-pen" and "Sung k'o-shu te o-chiu," 6.157-59. Chang
Hsiu-min's assessment of the accuracy of Sung imprints quotes most of the standard docu-
ments adduced in the debate; see Chung-kuoyin-shua shih, pp. 182-88.
192 Ch'ing-po tsa-chih it, i (Pai-hai edition, 6th ser.), 2.44b-45a. Chou Hui is one of
many who cite commercial editions from Ma-sha J#l?', an important printing center near
acceptance which made them difficult to root out.193 That erroneous
texts were being printed far faster than they could be corrected led
Lu Yu (who sponsored imprints himself) to pronounce that "it were
better they had not been printed at all."l194
Sung scholars commenting on this phenomenon saw it as a moral
rather than a technological problem. If individual editors were more
responsible, if printers were less greedy, if block engravers were
more conscientious, if readers were less gullible, then the quality of
imprints could be improved. Viewed in these terms, the elusiveness
of textual accuracy in even repeatedly collated imprints remained a
vexing mystery. A candid report by the Ming bibliophile and pub-
lisher Ch'en Chi-ju MRS (1558-1639) is worth considering here:
"I obtained an old text. After collating it, I had it copied. After the
copying, I recollated it. After the recollation, I had it engraved. Af-
ter the engraving, I collated it again. After the recollation, I printed
it. After the printing, I collated it once more. And still I found er-
rors of the 'Lu/fish and emperor/tiger' kinds-two to three characters
wrong in every hundred. 195

Print-texts were collated at least three times: after the block copy
was written out (and again if any corrections were made in the
copy), after a proof-print was pulled from the engraved block, and
once after corrections were entered on the blocks. But, as Chou Hui
and Ch'en Chi-ju's comments indicate, these operations were not al-
ways effective. In the colophon to a commercial Southern Sung
Ch'un-chiu edition, one printer sought to assure his readers: "We
have carefully followed the Directorate edition, and collated and cor-
rected the text three times, so that [you, the reader] will feel as if
you are strolling down an open highway, without any rooms [sic] to
hinder you" * IT but the error in
the last phrase, which should read "obstacles" (chih V) rather than

Chien-yang *, Fukien, as especially unreliable. The ubiquitous Ma-sha imprints were

notorious for their poor quality.
193 See Lu Yu, "Pa T'ang Lu Chao chi" W fft,* (1200), Wei-nanwen-chi, 28.15a;
Hung Mai, Jung-chaissu-pi, "Ch'ao-ch'uan wen-shu chih wu," 2.08b-9a; and additional
comments in Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuo yin-shuashih, pp. 184-86.
19 "Pa Li-tai ling-ming" ifl;ft,, Wei-nanwen-chi,26.7b.
195 T'ai-p'ing ch'ing-hua7;1'Ui (Pao-yen t'ang pi-chi edition, pi ser., 1606) 2.31b-32a;
quoted in Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 3.170-71.
"rooms," probably led prospective buyers to think otherwise."96
Such problems may have contributed to Chou Pi-ta's worries, when
he saw his contemporaries using print texts to "correct" earlier
manuscripts. He says: "At the beginning of our dynasty, although
writings were available only in manuscript copies, they were col-
lated meticulously. Later, shallow scholars changed the texts, des-
troying their original meaning. Today, everyone uses print editions
to correct old works, so that determinations of textual accuracy are
quite confused. I 197 ,

A basic problem was that developments in printing technology

and printing capacity, and the enthusiasm for utilizing both, far out-
stripped the practical adaptions required to ensure reliable produc-
tions. Not only did the new medium interpose three additional
stages of preparing block copy, block engraving, and printing, each
of which multiplied the possibilities for error, but also the division of
labor sometimes failed to supply adequate checks and balances.
This appears to be true of central government printing. As a print-
er, the Directorate operated independently from the Academy for
the Veneration of Literature (and later, the Palace Library), the
staff of whose affiliated scholarly agencies bore the chief responsibili-
ty for compiling and editing texts."98The Directorate's job was to
produce the print texts from approved copy, regardless of the point
of origin.'99 Once copy was forwarded to the Directorate's Book

196 Ch'un-ch'iu ching-chuan

chi-chiehtflMY1#* (imprint of Mr. Juan's Chung-te t'ang E
PAS,, 1176), as quoted in Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shua shih, p. 174.
197 ying-huahsii, " see n. 186.
" Wen-yuian
198 On the editorial responsibilities of staff in the Academy for the Veneration of Litera-
ture, see P'an T'ien-chen *W& "Pei Sung Ch'ung-wen-yiian te chien-yiian mu-ti ho
ts'ang-shu li-yung" ;|M-8URW H I T'u-shu-kuan1963, no. 1: 61.
P'an's discussion includes references to rare cases where the roles of the Directorate and
Academy were reversed. A general overview of bibliographic activities in the imperial li-
braries is also given in Hsiao Lu-yang ASM, "Pei Sung kuan-shu cheng-li shih-yeh te t'e-
tien" IL'%t$: J" !, Shang-haishih-fanhsueh-yuian
Fi?i;XRsF (ttLt4t) 11.1 (1988): 73-77.
199 On the Directorate's role as a printer, see n. 70. Poon's statement ("Books," pp. 115)
that the Directorate "did not compile or otherwise contribute to the intellectual content" of
the books which it printed, bound, and distributed, refers to the operations of its printing
department, the Book Treasury, since Directorate personnel are named as supervisors, colla-
tors, and proofreaders in dispatch notes to Directorate editions. These notes are collected in
Chien-penk'ao, chuian2-3, and analyzed by Poon in "Books," pp. 87-92, see esp. p. 88, tab. 4,
tabulating staff assignment lists recorded in twelve Northern Sung Directorate imprints from

Treasury, the text passed out of the hands of the editors, and the
proof-texts apparently were not circulated back to them. Therefore,
editors were often unable to tell until publication whether their
work had been followed as submitted. The results of this arrange-
ment can be seen in the revised Directorate imprint of the Nine Clas-
sics and the Three Commentaries,authorized in 1123. The respected
scholar Mao Chii-cheng -=iJfE was recruited to take charge of the
project. He was, according to the following contemporary account,
a meticulous editor:
[He] compared the different editions of the Six Classics and Three Commentaries,
consulted the Philosophers and Histories, made selections from the collected works
of various writers, and studied textual variations. As for the semantic explanations
and fan-ch'ieh reading, he made a point of collating even the minutest detail; the
scholar-officials (of the National Academy) [i.e., of the Directorate] fell into admira-
tion, none of them ever expressing any difference of opinion. Within a year, four of
the classics were printed.200

When Mao Chii-cheng picked up a copy of the imprint, he must

have been dismayed to discover that the printed version retained
twenty to thirty percent of the textual errors that he had previously
corrected in his copy. The block engravers, impatient with the num-
ber of corrections ordered, had changed his draft rather than the
characters in the blocks. At this time, preparations were underway
to print the Li-chi and ThreeCommentariesnext. Pleading eye trouble,

twenty such lists collected in Chien-pen k'ao. It should be noted that Directorate staff played a
significant editorial role in only four of the works, serving as compilers of the rhyme-book, Chi
yun (1043); collators of Ching-tien shih-wen (969); and collators and proofreaders of the Mao
Shih cheng-i (992) and Ch 'un-ch'iu Tso chuan cheng-i (990). For these works, the total Directorate
staff contribution (including 3-4 official presenters for each work) averages about 30 percent.
But as Poon points out, it is difficult to get a true picture of the total Directorate involvement
since low-ranking contributors are not included on such lists. For Edgren's interpretation of
Poon's data, see "Southern Song Printing," p. 25.
200 Wei Liao-weng 7a (1178-1237), "Liu-chingcheng-wuhsui" VTEXiFf (Dec. 31,
1225), in Liu-chingcheng-wu,comp. Mao Chu-cheng M)giE (fl. 1123-25) (T'ung-chiht'ang
ching-chiehedition, tsung ching-chiehser.), 2a; quoted in Chien-penk'ao 3.127-28 and Wang Kuo-
wei, Liang Che ku k'an-pen k'ao, 1.149. The translation is from Achilles Fang, "On the Author-
ship of the Chiu-ching san-chuan yen-ko-li," MS 11 (1946): 74-75, with additions in brackets,
and a reworded final sentence. Fang is translating a segment of the yen-ko-li copied verbatim
from Wei Liao-weng's preface; see [Hsiang-t'aishu-shu]K'an-chengChiu-chingSan-chuanyen-ko-
li fimJit:f1J, attr. Yiieh K'o &fiJ (1183-1240) (Tse-shihchu ts'ung-shu
ch'u-chi edition, 1926), "Shu-pen," 2b.
Mao resigned his appointment and, retiring from court, he com-
piled a corrigenda, Liu-ching cheng-wu ,WEN, in 6 chuian, thus
preserving his scholarly reputation.201 It was immediately printed
No wonder that, for reliable texts of the canon, Sung scholars
turned increasingly to private scholarly printing, where editors
might exercise direct control of the quality of the product. An out-
standing example is the privately printed late Sung edition of the
Nine Classics and Three Commentaries,attributed to Yiieh K'o -&4f
(1183-1240) and published in 1270 by Liao Ying-chung's *MV1
(1200?-75) scholarly printing house, Shih-ts'ai t'ang -taV (in
Shao-wu ,R, Fukien). It was reprinted in 1300 with the famous col-
lation manual, K'an-cheng chziu-chingsan-chuanyen-ko-li fIiEJfUX fW4
WikII,1 chuian,attributed to Yiieh K'o but probably compiled by Liao
Ying-chung for his edition.203 The manual cites twenty-three other
editions consulted in collating the text. It also describes the stan-
dards of orthography for the edition and the principles employed in
the construction of the scholarly apparatus, including provisions for
commentary, phonetic glosses, punctuation, lacunae, and textual
variants. This edition has been recognized as a milestone in the

201 This narrative is drawn from Wei Liao-weng, "Liu-chingcheng-wu hsi, " copied in K'an-
chengChiu-chingSan-chuanyen-ko-li; see references in n. 200. Note Chu Hsi's instructions to a
pupil on the handling of a correctedcopy-text intended for printing: "Do not give this copy di-
rectly to the carver, for fear he might want to save labor, lift off the pasted [correction]
sheet[s], leave uncorrected what should be corrected, and thus do harm in the long run";
"Yii Chan Shuai shu" XKVWRMX Hui-an chi, 27.32b, as translated in Chan, ChuHsi, p. 79,
with additions in brackets.
202 The publisher was Wei Liao-weng, see Liu-chingcheng-wu entry in WHTK: "Ching-chi
k'ao" 12, 185.1688c (in Chih-chaishu-luchieh-t'i,3.79), quoted in Ching-ik'ao 293.5a. Wei is
identified here by his hao, Ho-shan 1[U.
203 Liao Ying-chung, who had a reputation as a fine printer, is said to have engaged a staff

of more than a hundred collator-correctorsto assist him in comparing dozens of alternative

source-texts for this project; Chou Mi, Kuei-hsintsa-chihhou-chi M (Pai-hai edi-
tion, ser. 15), 27b-28a. Liao is identified here by his tzu, Ch'iin-yii 4#3E.
Fang thinks that most of the K'an-chengChiu-chingSan-chuan yen-ko-li(from "Shu-pen" 2a
through "K'ao-i" 26a) comes from a lost statement on methodology composed by Liao for
his 1270 edition, and that Yiieh K'o's contribution was limited to preliminary remarks (la-b)
and three short appendices on the Ch'un-ch'iu(26a-29b). He points out that portions of the
yen-ko-li are copied verbatim from Liao's preface; see "Authorship," pp. 65-86. Other
modern scholars believe that the 1300 edition was printed by YuiehChiin & (ca. 1264-ca.
1330); see references in Tsien Tsuen-Hsuin's entry in SungBibliography,p. 53, repeated in
Paper,p. 167.
transmission of the classics. But we should remember that it comes
very late in the Sung, its sophistication the fruit of hard experience.

Competitionamongprintersas a contributorto textualdestabilization. Not

only did printing guarantee that textual errors would be dissemi-
nated quickly; it also created a market for textual innovations. In
the Sung, most texts were printed to be sold. This is true of the
academy as well as the trade press. Local government academies
did not print only to supply textbooks. They counted on printing as
the chief source of income to supplement their inadequate govern-
ment pensions, especially in the late Southern Sung.204Also engaged
in printing for profit were local government offices, including
regional agencies of the central government (notably the Fiscal Com-
missions and Tea and Salt Supervisorates) and the Prefectural
Treasuries (kung-shihk'u 2,)g).2o5 The line between private and
commercial printing was often thin. Although government, private,
and commercial printing are sometimes treated as separate systems,
government, quasi-official, private, and commercial presses all
competed for sales at the local level. Pirating of works was common,
even though it was illegal for non-government publications after
the mid-Southern Sung, with commercial printers usually blamed
as the main culprits.206 The commercialization of printing, which

204 Poon, "Books," p. 95. For statistics on the geographical distribution of government
academy printers, see ibid., p. 134, tab., 11. For examples of such imprints, see Li Chih-
chung, Li-tai k'o-shu k'ao shu, pp. 81-82.
205 See general discussions of local government publications in Poon, "Books," pp. 127-
44; also Li Chih-chung, Li-tai k'o-shu k'ao shu, pp. 63-80, esp. pp. 76-78 for examples of
regional agency and Prefectural Treasury imprints. Among regional agency printers, Fiscal
Commissions ranked first in number of imprints, followed by Tea and Salt Supervisorates in
distant second-place; see statistics in Poon, "Books," p. 133, tab. 9. For details on printing
by Prefectural Treasuries, see the standard study, Lin T'ien-wei : "Sung-tai kung-
shih-k'u, kung-shih-ch'ien yui kung-yung-ch'ien chien-te kuan-hsi" ;
,FRtlgX, CYYY45.1 (1973): 129-56, esp. 149, 152.
206 On copyright, see Shu-lin ch'ing-hua, "Fan-pan yu li-chin shih yiu Sung-jen," 2.36-42;
and Poon, "Books," pp. 63-66, translated with supplements as [P'an,] "Chung-kuo
yin-shua pan-ch'uan te ch'i-yiian" @ IIiIJgD , Han-hsuehyen-chiuM* 7.1
(June 1989): 215-22. Poon brings out the interesting fact that copyright protections were
local (circuit-level only). Other legal restrictions on Sung printing are presented in Poon,
"Books," pp. 36-62; Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shuashih, pp. 188-201. For a more discur-
sive treatment, see Tuan Hsuian-wu &AR, Sung-tai pan-k'o fa-chih yen-chiu IMAOIJ
&%Iff (Taipei: Shih-shih ch'u-pan-she, 1976).
transformed books into commodities, gave new ideas tangible
worth. It encouraged their production.
Competition among printers made textual novelty economically
valuable. New texts and new editions of old texts sold-books with
titles such as "New Edition" (hsin tiao VW, hsin k'an OffiJ), "New
Definitively Collated Edition" (hsin-k'an chiao-ting fi tO), "Ex-
panded Edition" (tseng-kuang P), "Revised Edition" (ch 'ung-hsiu
SO), and "Expanded Revised Edition" (tseng-hsiu Wt)-whether
or not they actually offered anything new.207The effects are appar-
ent in two areas in which competition for book sales was especially
keen: literary collections, which the Directorate rarely printed, and
examination cribs.208 Examination materials advertised improve-
ments of all kinds, as exemplified by a single Southern Sung com-
mercial imprint entitled: The Mao Shih in 20 chuian: The Directorate
Edition, Illustrated[with drawings and tables], Cross-referencedfor Syno-
nyms [occurring in the same context elsewhere in the work], Cross-
referencedforWords Repeated [elsewhere in this work], Cross-referenced
for Citations [of this text in other works], Punctuated, and Collated
(Chien-pen tsuan-t'u ch'ung-i ch'ung-yen hu-chu tien-chiaoMao Shih erh-
shih-chuan . This imprint offered
an additional feature often advertised in the titles of such editions:
With Pronunciation Glosses (fu shih-yin f from Lu Te-ming's
Ching-tienshih-wen).209Familiar literary collections were also presented
in novel forms. The Worksof Tu Fu, for example, was made availa-
207 For details on competition as a spur to real and imaginary improvements, see Poon,

"Books," pp. 175-78, translated with supplements as [P'an,] "Shu-yeh o-feng shih yii Nan
Sung k'ao" , Hsiang-kang Chung-wen ta-hsiieh Chung-kuo wen-huayen-chiu-
so hsiieh-pao 4Lft,ttW 12 (1981): 271-81.
208 The competition in these two categories is assumed from Poon's statistics on the subject

categories of local government and commercial imprints. These subjects top both lists; see
"Books," pp. 135 tab. 12; 171, tab. 14.
209 See T'ien-lulin-langshu-mu1.lb-2a Many commercial editions bear such titles; see list-
ings in Shu-linch'inghua, "Sung-k'o tsuan-t'u hu-chu ching-tzu," 6.148-49. The meanings
of the title phrases are explained in T'ien-lu lin-lang shu-mu 1. lb-2a, also T'ien-lu lin-lang shu-
mu hou-pien 2.9a-b (Tsuan-t'u hu-chu Shang shu); cf. Flug, "Chinese Book Publishing," pp. 84-
85; Poon, "Books," pp. 103-4, tab. 7. Such types of annotations are illustrated in facsimile
reproductions of leaves in Kuo-li ku-kungpo-wu-ytuan Sung-pen t'u-lu Fg&f* 5t*J 0
(Taipei: Ku-kung po-wu-yiian, 1977), pl. 3 (Tsuan-t'u hu-chu Mao Shih; hu-chu commentary);
Kuo-li chung-yang t'u-shu-kuan Sung-pen t'u-lu fflAr iJA f,M5 F$X (Taipei: Chung-hua
ts'ung-shu wei-yuian-hui, 1958), pl. 1 (Tsuan-t'u hu-chu Chou I; ch'ung-i and ch'ung-yen commen-
ble With Commentariesby Nine Authorities, or Enlarged, with Commenta-
ries by Ten Authorities, With Collected Commentariesby One Hundred
Authorities, or With CollectedCommentaries by One ThousandAuthori-
ties, or with CollectedCommentariesby One ThousandAuthorities in en-
hanced editions Arranged Topically (frn-lei 3Ni), or Supplementedwith
Lost Works(pu-i MA).210 A popular genre of books, the sole purpose
of which was to correct errors in previously published books, also
flourished, with promising titles such as "Falsifications Analyzed"
(pien-o MR), "Ridiculous Mistakes Analyzed" (pien-wang "
"Absurdities Rectified" (chiu-miu *41), "Errors Identified" (shih-
wu AW), "Errors Listed" (tsuan-wu -SX), "Errors Corrected"
(k'an-wu 1J, cheng-wu ES.), and "Corrections Cited" (chli-cheng$
iE), together with the increasingly pertinent "Textual Variants
Examined" (k'ao-i .
Commercial printers clearly understood that novelty was impor-
tant in selling books. They advertised this in their colophons, which
functioned in part as book blurbs.2"' Prefaces and postscripts at-
tached to other types of imprints also directed the discriminating
reader to qualities that distinguished the new book from what-
ever other (invariably deficient) editions were then circulating. The
competitive book market provided scholar-editors with both the

210 The number of commentators cited in the One Hundred and the One Thousand Com-

mentators editions of Tu Fu is always vastly overstated. Both actually quote from fifty-odd
sources, and only about ten with any frequency, though the One Thousand Commentators
editions may carry lists naming some 149 to 156 authorities, including duplicate names; see
the following bibliographic entries: Huang-shihpu-chuTu shihX.FMait4L (a One Thousand
Commentators edition), in Chi Yiin CRfj (1724-1805) et al., comp., Ssu-k'uch'uan-shutsung-
mu E (1782) (Kuang-tung, 1868 edition; facsimile reprint, 2 vols., Peking
Chung-hua shu-chii, 1965), 150.1281a-c; Chi ch'ien-chiachu Tu shih : Ssu-k'u
ch'iian-shutsung-mu150.1281a-c; WangChuang-yiian chipai-chiachupien-nienTu-lingshih-shihEL
,<Ltg&St8:R t in Chou Ts'ai-ch'uian M,I;K%, comp., Tu chiishu-mut'i-yao#L
A H VW, 2 vols. (Tsinan: Ch'i Lu shu-she, 1986), p. 652; and Fen-menchi-chuTu Kung-pu
shih 5 r ?*a IE g (a One Thousand Commentators edition), in Chou Ts'ai-ch'uian,
pp. 653-54; Cherniack, "Three Great Poems by Du Fu" (Ph.D. diss., Yale University,
1988), p. 92 n. 234. A similar situation obtains in the Five Hundred Commentators edition of
Han Yii's works: a figure of 368 authorities is advertised in the preface, 148 names are listed,
and less than forty are actually quoted; Ssu-k'uch'iian-shutsung-mu150.1288b. The Five Hun-
dred commentators edition of Liu Tsung-yuian's VMq1N5E (773-819) works actually quotes
about ten commentators; Ssu-k'uch'iian-shutsung-mu150.2289c.
211 See Poon, "Printer's Colophon," pp. 39-52, summarized in "Books," pp. 193-95;
Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shua shih, pp. 170-75.
opportunity and incentive to compose new texts and revise old ones.
Private printing, which became a vogue in the Southern Sung,
provided additional opportunities for publishing their personal dis-
coveries about texts. If Sung scholars appeared to have more ideas
for redesigning books, it was perhaps because the chances of seeing
their work in print were good.
Print culture and collation methods. Another factor contributing to
Sung textual innovation is the interesting but complex interaction
between printing and those collation procedures inherited from pre-
print book culture.
Collation as a procedure of textual criticism-called ch 'ou-chiaoa
Ki and chiao-ch'ou in the Han, and chiao-k'an tM beginning in the
Six Dynasties and most commonly since the Sung-generally took
two forms in China. A text could be collated by scrutinizing it
alone, to locate lapses in sense or style, or to discover internal incon-
sistencies indicative of textual errors. Or a text could be collated by
comparing its readings against one or more other versions. Both
procedures are said to have been used by Liu Hsiang, the great Han
scholar who, together with his son, Liu Hsin, is recognized as the
founder of the broader field of "collation scholarship" (chiao-ch'ou-
hsueh). This field is similar to Western textual studies in its embrace
of textual criticism and bibliography, but includes bibliography as
the far more prestigious partner.212 The traditional valuation is

According to a widely-accepted modern definition, chiao-ch'ouhsiiehincludes pan-pen
hsuiehJX*W (evaluation of the physical characteristicsand history and quality of editions, in-
cluding problems of authenticity), mu-luhsuiehg 0 (bibliographic cataloguing, the analysis
of bibliographic records, and the classification of books), and chiao-k'anhsiieh(collation and
correction of texts, or textual criticism, including elements of "textual analysis" as defined by
Dearing in Manualand PrinciplesandPractice,both pp. 1-3); see representative comments in
Chang Shun-hui, Kuangchiao-ch'ouliiehW;KU (1945; reprint with supplements, Peking:
Chung-hua shu-chii, 1963), p. 2; Ch'eng Ch'ien-fan HIJT, Chiao-ch'oukuang-i(pan-pen
pien) K'UWi (JX*4C) (Tsinan: Ch'i Lu shu-she, 1991), pp. 1-9. The three begin to
emerge as distinct disciplines in the first half of the eighteenth century, in reaction to the
predominance of textual criticism in evidential scholarship. The focus on piece-meal textual
problems is felt to represent a "narrowing" of the traditional scope of collation studies; see
account in Chiang Yuian-ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ouhsiieh shih, pp. 177-83, and the cases made for
bibliography in collation studies in Wang Ming-sheng IED!9, (1722-98), Shih-ch'i-shih
shang-ch'iuehtLi (Kuang-yashu-chuits'ung shu edition, 5th ser.), "Shih-chi chi-chieh
fen pa-shih-chuian," 1. la-2b; and Chang Hsuieh-ch'eng T (1738-1801), Hsin chih
{tfj, in Chang-shihi-shuwai-pien F (Chang-shihi-shuedition, 1922), 1.8b-9a, and
Chiao-ch'out'ung-i K:.j (Chang-shihi-shu edition), "Chiao-ch'ou t'iao-li" 7, 1.14a-16a.
reflected in Cheng Ch'iao's 9*I; (1104-62) Chiao-ch'ou liieh / ,
the earliest Chinese monograph on the principles of collation
scholarship, which treats bibliographic matters only.213 The same
emphasis is defended by Ch'ing evidential scholars, who typically
approach texts as historical products, rather than as ideal forms.
Bibliographic studies come first for them, because the historically
oriented textual critic cannot utilize comparative collation to judge
the accuracy of readings presented in different textual sources
without first knowing a great deal about their provenance.
Liu Hsiang is credited with explaining ch'ou-chiaoas a compound
composed of the names of the two types of collation. The source for
this attribution is the seventh-century Li Shan commentary to the
literary anthology, Wen hsuan. As a gloss on the word ch'ou-chiaoin
Tso Ssu's AET,(ca. 253-ca. 307) "Wei Capital Rhapsody" (Wei-tu
fu ) the commentary cites the following passage from Ying
Shao's YN-M (A.D. 140-ca. 208) Feng-su t'ung-i AffX:
The Feng-su t'ung says: "According to Liu Hsiang's Pieh-lu, 'ch'ou-chiao' means:
When one person reads the transcription and compares what comes before and
after [in that text] to find errors, this is called 'chiao.' When one person holds the text
and a second person reads out the transcription, like a pair of adversaries facing off
against each another, [this is called 'chIou'].")214

213 Monograph 16 in Cheng Ch'iao's T'ung chih , The same emphasis is pointedly
maintained by Chang Hsuieh-ch'eng in Chiao-ch'out'ung-i. For comparisons of their news, see
Ch'ien Ya-hsin Mf, ChengCh'iaoChiao-ch'ouluiehyen-chiu(Shanghai: Shang-wu yin-shu-
kuan, 1948), pp. 97-106. Cheng Ch'iao did produce collation studies but these have not sur-
vived. These include Shupien-o I-{t (on the Shangshu, with sections entitled "Absurdities
Corrected" [Chiu-miu],"Doubtful Passages" [Ch'ieh-i], and "Restoring the Old Text" [Fu-
ku]; see entry in WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 4, 177.1534b [in Chih-chaishu-luchieh-t'i,2.291);
also Shihpien-o(on the Mao Shih), and Shu-mupien-o(on bibliographies; a portion of this work
may have been incorporated into his Chiao-ch'oulueh.). For details, see Cheng To-p'eng g
J, ChengCh'iaote chiao-ch'oumu-luhsiieh(Taipei: Hsiieh-hai ch'u-pan-she, 1976), pp. 34, 37-
40, 67.
214 Hsiao T'ung, comp., Wenhsuian,ed. Hu K'o-chia (1809; with Hu's Wenhsiiank'ao-i;

Sao-yehshan-fangedition, Shanghai, n.d.), 6.22b. The bracketed characters are not found in
Li's commentary. They are supplied by Hu in Wenhsuiank'ao-i, 1.47a. The commentary be-
longs with 1. 595 in David R. Knechtges' translation of the "Wei Capital Rhapsody," see
Wenxuan,orSelections of RefinedLiterature,vol. 1 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1982),
p. 463. The definition of ch'ouis also quoted in T'ai-p'ingyui-lan618.3b, where it is attributed
to PiehchuanAIJU(f1 is a copyist's error for f influenced by the head title AE41occurring in
the next line over, noted in Wang Shu-min, Chiao-ch'ouhsiieh,2a). This version has tu hsi ,f
"read and analyze" in place of tu shu ,3 "read the transcription."

According to this punning definition, which plays on basic mean-

ings of chiao as "compare (amd reconcile)" and ch'ou as "match,
mate; enemy," chiao and ch'ou appear to be posed as alternative or
complementary methods of proofing texts. A representation of the
latter method is thought to be given on a Ch'ang-sha pottery piece
from the Western Chin period (265-316), showing two scribes with
writing tablets in hand, facing one another, locked in argument,
their noses inches apart.215As Ch'ien Mu _ has noted, it is possi-
ble to construe the opening phrases alternatively as: "The Feng-su
t'ung says: 'In our opinion, the meaning of the phrase 'ch'ou-chiao'
in Liu Hsiang's Pieh-lu is," and in this case, the definition may be
giving Ying Shao's gloss on ch'ou-chiao rather than a direct quote
from the Pieh-lu.216Nevertheless, it is clear from early records of Liu
Hsiang's work as editor and redactor of texts for the palace library,
that comparative collation was basic to his method.217

215 See Hsin Chung-kuo ch'u-t'u wen-wu PtFg?+?4CJ [HistoricalRelics Unearthedin New
China](Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1972), pl. 119; reproduction in Tsien, Paper,p.
375, fig. 1232. A Sung iconographic equivalent, a handscroll in the National Palace
Museum, Taipei, depicting a collation session, also shows paired figures, facing each other
across a table. The scholar or the right holds up a butterfly book; his partner on the left has a
scroll placed before him; see Ku-kungshu-huat'u-lu & `gU , vol. 3 (Taipei: Kuo-li Ku-
kung po-wu-yuian, 1989), pl. 85: Sung-jenchiao-k'ant'u 5A;K^bR.
216 Ch'ien Mu believes that the definition must, judging from its style, be Ying Shao's

gloss; see "Liu Hsiang Hsin fu-tzu nien-p'u WIJ01#4I+, YCHP 7 (June 1930): 1216-
7. Other scholars do not raise this possibility. But support for Ch'ien's opinion is found in
glosses on ch'ou-chiao . (K' is a popular variant for K) in Hui-lin NX (737-820), I-ch'ieh
chingyin-i !JE . Hui-lin cites Liu Hsiang's Piehlu as saying: "To 'ch'ou-chiao'the clas-
sics means to examine and compare them" | This is followed by a cita-
tion from Feng-sut 'ung-i,reminiscent of the Wenhsian commentary gloss: 'When two persons
match and compare [texts], this is called 'ch'ou-chiao'" cf. the citation fol-
lowing this, from Chi-hsin*311: 'When two persons match texts and compare transcriptions,
this is called 'ch'ou' A; El Taishoshinshuidaizyokyo,no. 2128, 54:81 la.
217 In 26. B.C., during the reign of Emperor Ch'eng i1Q(32-7 B.C.), Liu Hsiang was given
the task of collating texts in these categories, to establish editions for the inner palace library;
Han shu, "I-wen chih," 30.1b; Wei Zheng ft (580-643), comp., Sui shu P (PNPS
edition), "I-wen chih," 27.2b. After his death, his son Liu Hsin completed the work.
Liu Hsiang's observations on textual discrepanciesare noted in Han shu30.3b (on the ChouI),
4a (on the Shangshu); see Ch'ien Mu, "Liu Hsiang nien-p'u," pp. 1215-7. The Pieh-lu(20
chuian)provided summaries of the contents of the texts collated, together with such notes; for
the extant entries on Chan-kuots'e, Kuan Tzu, YenTzu, Lieh Tzu, TengHsi Tzu, Sun Ch'inghsin
Collation by a single witness and comparative collation are both
included in the modern scholar Ch'en Yuan's Wf analysis of the
four methods of collation used in traditional textual criticism: (1)
"comparative collation" (tui-chiao 9M), comparing different ver-
sions of the same work to discover discrepancies; (2) "collation of the
self-same text" (pen-chiao *aK-), scrutinizing a text for objective in-
ternal inconsistencies, such as differences between the table of con-
tents and the body of the text; (3) "collation of other sources" (t'o-
chiao {tK-), comparing quotations of the text in other works, and
treatments of the same subjects in other contemporary sources; and
(4) "rational collation" (li-chiao W-R), conjectural emendation of a
single witness, used to discover and resolve textual problems that
cannot be addressed by other means.218All four would be included
in what Yeh Te-hui calls "live collation" (huo-chiao AR), which
aims to produce an improved text-as distinguished from "dead
collation" (ssu-chiao~EtK),which aims to produce a diplomatic edition
(a replica in all details).219
All four procedures were used by Sung textual scholars, and often
by the same individuals. Later, Ch'ing evidential scholars utilized
the same procedures, but applied them differently.220The difference

shu, and Han Fei Tzu, see Chang Shun-hui, Wen-hsienhsiiehlun-chuchi-yao,pp. 1-17; see also
the discussion in P. Van der Loon, "On the Transmission of Kuan-tzu," TP 41.4-5 (1952):
358-65. Good analyses of Liu's work are offered in Yao Ming-ta t-tg (1842-1906), Chung-
kuomu-luhsiiehshih r:PMH W t (1936; reprint, Shanghai: Shang-wu yin-shu-kuan, 1957),
pp. 36-48, and Chiang Yiian-ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ou hsuehshih, pp. 29-36; for a more traditional
treatment, see Sun Te-ch'ien , (1869-1935), Liu Hsiang chiao-chouhsiiehtsuan-weiWIJq J
;X|WgZ (Sun Ai-k'an so-chushu edition, 1923).
218 See Chiao-k'an hsuehshih-li, K W@r J (first published as " Yuantien-chang chiao-pushih-
li" ; in Ch'ing-chuTs'ai Yuan-p'eihsien-sheng liu-shih-wu-suilun-wen-chiWffi
E?EM/o+ERSTS:, pt. 1, CYYYwai-pien,no. 1 [Peiping, 1933], pp. 189-278; collect-
ed in Ch'en's Li-yunshu-wuts'ung-k'o04E,110 A, 1934; reprint, Peking: Chung-hua shu-
chu, 1959), "Chiao-fa ssu-li," 6.144-50. For a detailed analysis of Ch'en Yuan's categories
with many illustrations, see Ts'ui Wen-yin t&! 0i, "Shuo 'Chiao-k'an ssu-fa'
Shih-hsiiehshihyen-chiu Arf 3 (1990): 15-36. Ch'en's terms have been adopted by a
number of modern critics.
219 These terms are introduced in Ts'ang-shu shih-yiieh,1Oa;trans. Fang, "Bookman's Deca-
logue," pp. 150-51; see discussion in Elman, FromPhilosophyto Philology,pp. 69-70. Note
that they are not used by earlier Ch'ing critics.
220 For a survey of Ch'ing collation scholarship, see Chiang Yuian-ch'ing, Chiao-ch 'ouhsueh
shih, pp. 161-312, esp. 162-63 (general comments on methods), 272ff (criteria for emenda-
tion); for less detailed treatments in the other Republican-period standards, see Hu P'u-an -M
defines an important characteristic of Sung collation, namely the
preference for "rational collation." We see that Ch'en's sequence
presents a hierarchy of procedures in which critical judgment plays
an increasingly important role, as shown in the progress from "com-
parative collation" -this, according to Ch'en, results in a vario-
rum but does not necessarily involve editorial determinations about
the respective values of the variants collected-to "rational colla-
tion," where scholarly ingenuity is summoned to propose readings
better than those provided by any known text. "Rational collation"
operates independently of the authority of textual precedents.
Ch'en describes it as the most wonderful and dangerous method of
collation, to be used only as a last resort; the two Ch'ing scholars
whom Ch'en cites as exemplars of this method (Tuan Yii-ts'ai and
Ku Kuang-ch'i )MM* [1776-1835]) would probably have con-
curred.22' Ch'en also accepts the convention first established as an
axiom in Ch'ing evidential scholarship (but one, unfortunately,
that is not always followed in Ch'ing editorial practice) that all
changes resulting from collation should be reported in the scholarly
apparatus. A record of the prior state of the text is thereby
preserved, regardless of what combination of strategies may be used
in the editing.
For Sung editors, however, "rational collation" was often a first
recourse, a testimony to what Winston Lo has described as the Sung
faith in reason as a "principle of legitimation, independent of, and
often in opposition to, truths sanctioned by divine revelation or tra-
dition. "222 Lo finds this credo reflected in Sung philology (hsiao-hsiieh
/JN1). In textual criticism, it is reflected in the characteristic practice
of conjectural emendation, which may appear reckless or fantastical
to Ch'ing evidential scholars. But the same practice appears more

M and Hu Tao-ching, Chiao-ch'ouhsueh(Shanghai: Shang-wu yin-shu-kuan, 1934), pp.

40-53; and Chang Shun-hui, Kuangchiao-ch'ou ljeh, pp. 128-36. A discussion of the character-
istics of Ch'ing textual criticism is beyond the scope of the present essay, but we may note
that in Ch'ing textual criticism, it is scholarly documentation (including, importantly,
documentation of usage precedents) that provides the necessary sanction for textual innova-
tion. For this reason, unindicated emendations are a primary focus of animus.
Chiao-k'anhsuehshih-li, 6.148-49.
"Philology, An Aspect of Sung Rationalism," ChineseCulture17.4 (Dec. 1976): 2, and
see 1-26.
reasonable from the Sung perspective. Sung conjectural emenda-
tion is undergirt with a basic confidence in the competence of in-
dividuals to discern verbal truth. For Sung editors, verbal truth is
fundamentally ahistorical: conjectural emendation is credible be-
cause cultivated scholar-editors can know the constant norms of hu-
man nature, can tap into the same universal sources of inspiration
as did the authors whose works they edit, and can thus recognize tex-
tual falsifications with unerring accuracy. The critic's ability to ap-
prehend the i-li A3-, the meaning or inherent principle in a work,
remains the surest guide in determining textual authenticity; com-
parisons of textual variants can help substantiate this knowledge,
but they cannot replace it.223
For many Sung textual critics, it was therefore enough to explain
in a general way that changes were made because the text "did not
conform with human nature" (pu chinjen-ch 'ing T-AAJ1W) or because
the text "was unreasonable" (wu li i!30). Individual emendations
were often made without special remark. Readers did not demand
and many editors did not feel the need to justify editorial changes by
reference to a prior textual authority. And there was as yet no
scholarly consensus about the desirability of documenting prior
states in a scholarly apparatus. Some editors did so, especially when
doubts lingered about the correct reading. Then alternative read-
ings might be preserved, in annotations of the liang-ts'un fiW4("we
preserve both") type. But many other editors did not do this, for
they saw no value in keeping old mistakes alive when new errors
were proliferating daily.
The practice of "rational collation," coupled with the habit of
unindicated emendation, has been recognized as one of the most
problematic aspects of Sung textual scholarship. It is also the
telltale sign of the absence of a systematized textual methodology.
Scholars, lacking the critical tools necessary to sort out the often
complicated historical relations between different versions of a work
and to judge the relative authority of received texts with any real
objectivity, must trust their instincts, and individual talent will
count for more than methodology. In such circumstances, ingenuity

223 This is Chu Hsi's view; see "Ta Yuan Chi-chung" 4:i;{+, Hui-an chi 38.7b.
typically has no rival as a strategy of textual criticism.224
The Mechanics of Sung Collation. Sung collation conventions
evolved from earlier practices. Traditionally, corrections were en-
tered directly on the document under collation or on a working copy
prepared for this purpose. Many different signs were used to indi-
cate deletions, additions, inversions, and divisions in the text.225
Replacement characters, omitted characters, and other annotations
were added between columns (to the right of the relevant text),
sometimes between characters, and in the upper and lower margins
of the paper, depending on the space available. For informal correc-

224 See the illuminating discussion of this subject in John F. D'Amico, TheoryandPracticein
Renaissance Textual Criticism: Beatus Rhenanus Between Conjectureand History (Berkeley and Los
Angeles: University of California Press, 1988).
225 A concise inventory of collation signs and
punctuation marks found in Tun-huang
manuscripts is given in Li Cheng-yui 4iE4 "Tun-huang i-shu chung-te piao-tien fu-hao"
tQiR@bGl#, Vph,Wen-shih chih-shih t7,V 8 (1988): 98-100. Li finds that a variety
of signs were used for the same purpose, and that some signs had multiple purposes.
However, the apparent lack of standardization may be partly attributable to the long time-
frame. Many useful details on medieval collation practices are found in a recent study by Kuo
Tsai-i W E0 et al., "Tun-huang hsieh-pen shu-hsieh t'e-li fa-wei" #kw , *
in Tun-huang T'u-lu-fan hsiieh yen-chiu lun-wen-chi . ed. Chung-kuo
Tun-huang T'u-lu-fan hsuieh-hui =* (Shanghai: Han-yu ta tz'u-tien ch'u-pan-she, 1991),
pp. 310-46. This work analyzes Tun-huang manuscript styles and errors made in modern
retranscriptions, including those involving ambiguous signs.
A simple system of punctuation, intended for novice readers, is explained by a mid- to late
seventh-century Tun-huang collator in his colophon to a copy of the Lotus Sutra(S.2577,
Miao-fa lien-huachingO TE, chuian8). The collator marks in red ink only such reading
phrases as do not consist of four-character units and also p'o-yin tzu (see n. 229), omitting
other diacritics including those used demarcate sections in the text. The sentence-final marks
(placed directly below the character) and p 'o-yintzu marks (placed in the middle of the charac-
ter) are visible in one segment from S.2577, exposed and discussed in Harumichi Ishizuka,
"R6ran, Tonk6 no katenbon, " p. 23, pl. 16. Victor H. Mair's translation of the colophon in
T'ang Transformation Texts(Cambridge: Council on East Asian Studies, Harvard University,
1989), p. 138, may be supplemented in accordance with the above.
Some of the same signs are found in Han documents; see lists in Chung-kuo k'o-hsiieh-
yuan k'ao-ku yen-chiu-so PPRn, 3T and Kan-su sheng po-wu-kuan #t J
AtM, ed., Wu-weiHan chienR IA (Peking: Wen-wu ch'u-pan-she, 1964), pp. 70-7 1; and
Lao Kan * "Ts'ung mu-chien tao chih te ying-yiin" t*%II i0ijX, trans. Ch'iao
Yen-kuan j1, Chung-yang t'u-shu-kuankuan-k'an rP-,LN fl, n.s., 1.1 (1967): 5-6.
For the Sung, signs found in imprints are listed in Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuo yin-shua
shih, pp. 169-70. Different systems of collation signs are described in Shu-linya-hua2.26, and
exemplified by Fang Sung-ch'ing's )M,#i (1135-94) textual study of Han Yii's collection,
Han chi chii-cheng"i; IE (1189); see Ssu-k'u ch'aan-shu tsung-mu, 150.1287b-8a. The
Southern Sung Palace Library system described in Nan Sungkuan-kolu, "Chu-ts'ang, " 3.2b-
3b, will be treated below.
tions on drafts, black ink was used to blot out (tien %,!)errors (the cor-
rections were then usually added to the right). For convenience,
black ink was also used for other editing tasks, but colored inks were
thought to be indispensable in formal collation.
In formal collation, yellowish orpiment (tz'u-huang) was used like
liquid white-out to erase erroneous graphs; it matched the color of
manuscript paper, which was dyed yellow when washed with an in-
secticide. 226 Even after white paper came to replace yellow paper for
most ordinary uses in the Sung, orpiment continued to be used,227
later being replaced by a whitish substitute.228 Whitish lead powder
(ch'ien-fen S*) was used for the same purpose as orpiment. Red
ink-in the form of vermilion (chu *) and so-called cinnabar (tan Y)
or cinnabar powder (tan-fen Yf*)-was employed to flag errors
and to enter corrections, other collation notes, punctuation, and

226 A recipe for tz'u-huangand instructions for its application are found in Ch'i minyao-shu,

"Tsa-shuo," 30, 3.16a; see explanatory notes in Meng-hsipi-t'anchiao-cheng, pp. 67-68, and
Liao Ch'i-yii V,T ed., Ch'i-minyao-shuchiao-shihRR (Peking: Nung-yeh ch'u-pan-she,
1982), pp. 173-74. Like writing ink, tz'u-huangwas prepared in a solid lump, then ground
with water to the proper consistency, and applied with a brush. By the late third century, tz'u-
huanghad become so common that Wang Yen's IET (256-311) habit of revising his argu-
ments even as he spoke is described by contemporaries as "oral tz'u-huang";Chinshu 43.8b.
Tz'u-huangwas also used for other purposes: to paint wooden tablets yellow to be used for im-
perial rescripts (see Sui shu 9.1 la-b, SS 154.16b), and sometimes to rule columns; and also as
a cosmetic, and in medicine and gold-making, see Edward A. Schafer, "Orpiment and Real-
gar in Chinese Technology and Tradition," JAOS 75.2 (1955): 73-78.
The yellowing insecticide dye was made from the bark of the Amur cork tree (huang-po/piIt
X, Phellodendron amurense).A recipe and instructions are also found in Ch'i-minyao-shu3. lOb-
1la. These are translated and the subject of dyeing is discussed in R. H. van Gulik, Chinese
PictorialArt As Viewedby the Connoisseur,Serie Orientale Roma, no. 19 (Rome: Istituto
Italiano per il Medio ed Estremo Oriente, 1958), pp. 136-37; also Tsien, BambooandSilk, p.
152, and Paper,pp. 74-76ff (but note that Ch'i-minyao-shuprovides no evidence that tz'u-huang
was used as an insecticide to protect paper; tz'u-huangis treated under a separate heading,
chih-shufa,which follows an entry [15b] on the preparation of errata and note slips). The com-
mon use of the dye is reflected in the old terms for books, huang-chiian, and huang-penX*.
227 This is reported by Sung Ch'i, who regards the continued use of tz'u-huangon white

paper by enthusiasts as illogical. Yellow paper, he notes, continued to be used for Buddhist
and Taoist writings; Sung Ching-wenpi-chi 51Z 1m"-)M4 (Pai-ch'uanhsiieh-haiedition, 8th ser.,
1930), 1.2a; quoted in Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 1.12. Yellow paper was generally reserved for
imperial edicts, and also for editions of manuscript and print books intended for imperial use
(whether produced at court or submitted from other regions in the country).
228 The preferred later substitute, a fluid made from pale steatite stone from Ch'ing-t'ien

H'R (in Chekiang), is noted in Ts'ang-shuchi-yao8a; trans. Fang, "Bookman's Manual,"

pp. 234-35.
diacritic and tone marks.239Colored inks were commonly used in
tandem. In T'ang times, phrases such as chu- tan- huang-pi* (vermil-
ion, cinnabar, or orpiment brush), chu huang (vermilion and orip-
ment), tan huang (cinnabar and orpiment), tan ch'ien f (cinnabar
and lead powder), and ch'ien huang (lead powder and orpiment),
came to be used as kennings for collation-so the poet Han Yu
reflects upon the frustration of his political ambitions:
I would be better off poring over texts
Occupying myself by making marks and corrections with cinna-
bar and lead.230

One of the best known devotees of colored inks is the histori-

ographer Liu Chih-chi JqU (661-72). He designed his essay,
"On Marking Verbiage" (Tien fan 1 in Shih t'ung 93 (pref-
ace 710), using vermilion and orpiment to designate those passages
in classics of philosophy and history that he thought should be
chopped. He compares the instant clarity given by color to that of a
battlefield map.23' Sung Ch'i followed this practice in revising his

229 Vermilion was used for such purposes from early times. Detailed examples of the use of

vermilion for sentence-end punctuation (chiu-tien 'I%,,), section divisions (k'o-tuanHf), and
pronunciation marks (tien-faMR) in third- to tenth-century manuscripts are given in Ishizu-
ka Harumichi, "R6ran, Tonk6 no katenbon," pp. 1-38. Red dots for reading pauses were
entered at the bottom right of a character, or sometimes between characters. Red dots were
also used diacritically, first to mark characters that are now called po'-yin tzu X ~r, when
the character was used with what was considered the less-basic sense (a "derivative mean-
ing," in Ishizuka's term). The dots were usually placed in the middle of the character, or
sometimes to the right. When this system was refined in the T'ang, red dots were placed on
one of the four corners of thep 'o-yintzuto indicate a specifictone. Later, the system was adopt-
ed to mark tones on any character; on the evolution, see ibid., pp. 4-5, 20-27; also
Harumichi Ishizuka, "Some Marks and Commentaries on Old Chinese and Japanese Docu-
ments," Actes du 20, Congres international des Orientalistes, Section Chine ancienne (Paris: L'Asia-
theque, 1977), pp. 175-80, which summarizes and supplements his earlier article. Red circles
began to replace dots in the T'ang, becoming popularized in the Sung and Yuian; see Chu
Sheng-ch'i %, "Ku-shu te chii-tu chi ch'i fu-hao" Nan-chingshih-
yuan hsuieh-pao iI
p R (tf14J) 1 (1981): 66-67.
230 "Ch'iu-huai shih-i-shou" Wk+-4, no. 7, Chu Wen-kungchiaoCh'ang-lihsien-sheng
chi ; V*I* -* (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), 1.23b. For a translation and discussion,
see Stephen Owen, ThePoetryof Meng ChiaoandHan Yu(New Haven: Yale University Press,
1975), pp. 262-63.
231 See Shih t'unghsin chiao-chu
_PA1 ia, ed. Chao Lii-fu i,TR (Chungking: Ch'ung-
draft of the Hsin T'ang shu (chuian176), leaving an editing trail that a
later observer, Chao Yen-wei MSA (d. 1206), was able to trace:
He used draft paper ruled in vermilion. Close to the column line, he transcribed his
former text in black. Beside it, he entered his corrections in vermilion. I saw that at
the end of his draft for Han Yii's biography he had first written: "Scholars look up
to him as if he were Mount T'ai or the Northern Dipper." He marked that out
(tien) and changed it to: "as if he were a bright star or a phoenix." Then he
marked that out and changed it back to: "Mount T'ai or the Northern Dipper. "232

That is how Sung's well-known appraisal (tsan T) came to end: "Af-

ter his death, his views were put into wide use. Scholars look up to
him as if he were Mount T'ai or the Northern Dipper."
Vermilion was also used regularly in the design of books with
interlinear commentary, first in Eastern Han editions of classics to
distinguish the text proper from a black commentary, or conversely, to
set off the annotations from a black text.233In other works vermilion

ch'ing ch'u-pan-she, 1990): "Wai-p'ien," pp. 865-66. According to an "original note," Liu
Chih-chi used both vermilion and tz'u-huangdiacritic marks in his text; p. 886 nn. 8-9. In the
course of monochrome print transmission, the marked and unmarked portions of the text
became completely confused. Chao's version of the chapter draws on two widely divergent
modern restorations: Hung Yeh A [William Hung], " Shih t'ung Tien-fanp 'ieni-bu" t
%,fM,jVV, Shih-hsaehnien-paof 2.2 (1935): 149-60, reprinted in Hung Yehlun-hsaeh-
chi = (Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1981), pp. 140-49; and Lu Ssu-mien
Shih t'ungp'ing - (Kuo-hsaehhsiaots'ung-shuedition, 1934), pp. 111-25.
232 Yun-luman-ch'ao , (preface 1206) (She-wentzu-chiuedition, 1856; reprint, 1924;
facsimile reprint in Ts'ung-shuchi-ch'eng), 4.93-94. The use of vermilion for ruling columns is
already seen in Ma-wang-tui manuscripts; see color reproductions in Ch'ien Hao et al., Out
of China'sEarth:Archaeological Discoveriesin thePeople'sRepublicof China(New York: Abrams,
1981), pp. 116, pl. 175 (ChouI); 119, pl. 176 (Lao Tzu A). Later uses are discussed in in
Shimada Kan ,%Eil, Kobun kyushoko/ Ku-wen chiu-shuk'ao -i7XA4# (Tokyo: 1905;
reprint, Peking: Ts'ao-yii t'ang, 1935), "Shu-ts'e chuang-huang k'ao," 19b. Tun-huang
manuscripts provide a number of examples of vermilion corrections of student writing, e.g.,
P.3305, noted in Drege, "La Lecture et l'ecriture," p. 84.
233 Early third-century use is confirmed by a report in Yii Huan's (third century) Wei
lueh IMM that the annotator Tung Yu M (fl. 194-237) produced a vermilion-and-black
commentary edition of the Tso chuan,with red for the text of the classic, and black for com-
mentary; see P'ei Sung-chih's ?2f?L(372-451) commentary to Ch'en Shou 1Xg (233-97),
comp., San-kuochih J,i> (PNPS edition), "Wei Lang chuan," 13.30a. A much earlier,
Western Han origin is postulated by the Sui classical scholar, Liu Hsiian %Q, who credits
K'ung An-kuo with the development of vermilion-and-black editions of the classics, treating
this as an innovation accompanying the creation of interlinear commentary editions of the
classics (see n. 264), which Liu also attributes to K'ung. Liu further says that since the East-
ern Han, all commentators had adopted the practice. These claims appear to be unfounded,
but Liu's comments do provide evidence of the popularity of color editions in his own time.
was used to set off important strata in the text proper. For example,
T'ao Hung-ching's tA15 (452?-536?) Shen-nung pen-ts'ao ching
chi-chu t*AV,* employed vermilion for recording medicines
listed in the original entries attributed to Shen-nung (ca. 28th-27th
century B.C.), and black for supplements by later commentators.234
The early T'ang scholar Lu Te-ming also planned his Ching-tien
shih-wen as a two-color work: black for citations from the texts of the
classics, and vermilion for his phonological glosses, so that his read-
ers could "find them at a glance."235
When these works and many others like them were converted to
monochrome print-texts in the Sung, the advantage of color-coding
was lost, opening up further possibilities for confusion between text
and commentary. Compensation for the loss of color was sometimes
made by engraving vermilion characters (and also commentary ti-
tles) intaglio, until the early fourteenth century, when further de-
velopments in printing technology permitted the use of red for text
and punctuation.236

See Nait6 Torajir6, "Shoshoseigikaidai," p. 198, quoting and discussing Liu's commentary
to the Pseudo-K'ung Preface to Ku-wenHsiao ching 1 (Yamamoto Taichui's IIIt
imprint, 1814, of an edition held in the Ashikaga Confucian School [Ashikaga Gakk6]
234 See [K'ai-yuanhsieh-pen]Pen-ts'aochi-chuhsuts'an-chuan J (Tun-
huang ms., British Museum; facsimile reprint in Chi-shihan ts'ung-shu),leaf 2, verso; quoted
in Okanishi Tameto, Sungi-ch'ieni-chik'ao, pp. 1251-2. The manuscript copy-text submitted
to the Directorate retained the color scheme as part of an elaborate system of annotations
designed to prevent confusion among different strata of the work. The design is described in
the preface to the Directorate edition of Pu-chuPen-ts'ao;N$g, 20 chuan(1061-62), quoted
in Chien-pen k'ao2.108-9. The imprint, however, was monochrome, and by the Ming, the ver-
milion and black segments had become confused; see entry on Liao Hsi-yung , comp.,
Shen-nung pen-ts'ao ching shu I * f,, in Ssu-k'u ch'ian-shu tsung-mu 104.876b.
235 See Ching-tienshih-wen(SPTK edition, 1st ser.), "T'iao-li" {yFlJ, 2b. Another T'ang ex-
ample is Chang Ts'an's use of vermilion in Wu-chingwen-tzufor marking variant forms of
characters, to prevent confusion; see (Chih-pu-tsuchaits'ung-shuedition), "Hsui-li" J+fiJ,2a.
(This distinction was probably lost when this work was engraved on stelae, between 776 and
880, at the National University, Ch'ang-an.) Chang Shou-chieh's 4Kiqj Shih-chicheng-i4
9iLiE (preface 736) is also sometimes cited for its use of vermilion for marking pronuncia-
tion, although this is not explicitly stated in the relevant section of the "Lun-li" ;&J.
236 For examples of the conversion of vermilion to intaglio in imprints, see entry on Han chi
chii-chengin Ssu-k'uch'iian-shutsung-mu150.1287c, citing this work and also a Cheng-ho period
(1111-17) pharmacopia, both with vermilion characters converted to intaglio. The earliest
known example of a vermilion-and-black imprint of a book is the DiamondSutra(Chin-kang
pan-jo-po-lo-miching!& JIJMEMP) (Tzu-fu Temple , Chung-hsing Circuit, 1341;
Sung scholars nonetheless continued to use red and other colors
in manuscript books, both within and without the court. Prominent
eleventh- and twelfth-century examples include the two revisions of
Shen-tsungshih-lu tI2E undertaken in the Shao-sheng (1094-97)
and early Shao-hsing periods, and also Fang Sung-ch'ing's textual
study of the works of Han Yu (1189). In the Shih-lu revisions, black
was used for transcriptions from the original Yiian-yu period text,
yellow for deletions, and vermilion for additions.237 In his original
study, Fang wrote the character corrections in vermilion.238 Mastery
of collation signs and colored inks employed in collation and in
analytical annotations (p'i-tien M%) seems to have been a normal
part of Sung educational curricula. The widely used Yuan educa-
tional primer composed by Ch'eng Tuan-li ;WX, (1271-1345),
Ch'eng-shih chia-shu tu-shu frn nien-jih ch'eng HW
(1315), which applies Chu Hsi's program as outlined in Chu-tzu tu-
shufa, provides detailed instructions for training students in sophisti-
cated systems of collating and annotating texts employing colored
inks (red, yellow, and blue) as well as black.239Such systems must

held in the National Central Library, Taipei); it employs red for illustrations and prayers,
and black for other text, including commentary; see Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shua shih,
p. 326, and frontispiece plate; Tsien, Paper,p. 282, fig. 1189. As S6ren Edgren has observed,
the high level of craftsmanship indicates a long period of prior development in color book
printing (pers. com.).
237 The Shao-sheng revision, popularly known as the "History in Vermilion and Black"

*65p-, was undertaken by Ts'ai Pien #t (1058-1117), Lin Hsi *t (chin-shih1057), and
Tseng Pu #f!fi (1036-1107). The Shao-hsing revision was done by Fan Ch'ung -p (1067-
1141) and Chao Ting Wir(1084-1147). Both projects are chronicled in YH: "I-wen,"
"Shao-hsing ch'ung-hsiu Che-tsungshih-lu," 48.16a-17a, and Chien-yehi-lai chao-yehtsa-chi,
ser. 1, "Chih-tso": "Shen-tsungChe-tsunghsin shih-lu," 4.7a. For a description of the Shao-
sheng revision, see entry entitled Shen-tsungchu-moshih in WHTK: "Ching-chi k'ao" 21,
194.1644a-b; also Chih-chaishu-luchieht'i 4.124 and Chiin-chaitu-shuchihchiao-cheng 6.231-2
(under Shen-tsung shih-luand Shen-tsungchu-moshih). For the Shao-hsing revision, see entry for
Shen-tsungshih-lukao-i in WHTK "Ching-chi ka'o" 21, 194.1644b; Chih-chaishu-lu chieht'i
The precedent for the Shao-sheng "History in Vermilion and Black" is said to have been
the Annalsof Tai-tsu (Tai-tsu chi tkA ), 1 chuian,compiled by Chang Chi 21t (933-96)
(Hanlin Scholar) et al. in 994. In this work, vermilion was used for quotations of T'ai-tsu and
records from the Historiography Institute; see Lu Yu, Lao-hsiiehanpi-chi Fg r;d (Pai-hai
edition, 5th ser.), 10.7b-8a; Ch'ing-potsa-chih3.3.
238 See entry on Han chi chui-cheng in Ssu-k'uch'iian-shutsung-mu150.1287c.
239 See Cheng-shihchia-shutu-shufennien-jihcheng (SPTK ed., 2d ser.) 1.18a-25a, 2.20a-

30a; cf. other Yuian systems described in Ch'ien T'ai-chi X (1791-1863), P'u-shutsa-chi

have had their origins in Sung practices.

The collation procedures inherited from pre-print culture sur-
vived well into the Southern Sung. These are codified in a set of de-
tailed instructions, Chiao-ch'ou shih 1AR, compiled in 1136, and
posted outside the offices of collators in the Palace Library:
Wherever you find a wrong character, erase it with orpiment and [in its place],
write in the [correct] character. If you find interpolated characters, circle them with
orpiment. If you find that characters are missing, add them beside the [appro-
priate] character. If there is not enough room beside the character for your anno-
tations, use a vermilion circle [to mark the place where the annotation should be
added]; then in the margin above or below that line, write it in. If you find an inver-
sion, draw an i-shaped character [Z, i.e., a check-mark] between the two [in-
verted] characters.
The proper place for punctuation marks [for the end of a sentence] is to the side
[of the character]. Where you find groups of [characters composed of a series of]
names of people, places, or objects, separate each [name] by inserting fine punctua-
tion marks in between them [directly below the appropriate character].240
With regard to tone marks, if a character is followed by a pronunciation gloss,
blot out [the gloss] with vermilion, then enter the tone mark [at one of four corners
of the character. ]241 Also supply tone marks for other characters with certain
pronunciations that are attested by the Classics, Canonical Commentaries,
Philosophies, or Histories. Also, if you find a character that has distinctly different
pronunciations [when it occurs in different words]242 . . . but has no pronunciation
gloss following, you should add a tone mark.
If you find a mistake in a [punctuation or tone] mark, you should correct it by ap-
plying orpiment over the vermilion. The mark should be made yellow, so that the
place where the mark had been shall appear to be unmarked.

!W V=3 NE(Shih-hsiin tang ts'ung-shuedition, 1st ser.), "Yuian-jenSsu-shuWu-chingpiao-tien,"

2. 14a-15a.
240 The distinction here, between the tien % used to mark the end of a sentence (chiu13J),
and the tien (called a tou-hao3 r) used to mark the end of a reading phrase (tou a), is ex-
plained in a reference to these instructions, cited as the "Chiao-shushih K".tA of the Acade-
mies and Institutes," in Mao Huang , Tseng-hsiuhu-chuLi-puyiin-lieh "6 E1r V
1I (Ssu-ku ch'iian-shuedition), 4.120b. His son, Mao Chii-cheng, adopted this system for his
edition of the Classics;see Kan-cheng Chiu-chingSan-chuanyen-ko-li, "Chii-tou," 24b. The
same conventions were employed in the Yuian Palace Library; see Cheng-shihchia-shutu-shu
fen nien-jihcheng, "Kuan-ko chiao-k'an fa," 2.20.
241 The appropriate tone was marked by placing a dot at one corner of the graph: the SE

corner for p 'ing, SW for shang,NW for ch'ii, and NE forju. This arrangement is first seen in
Tun-huang manuscripts dating from the late seventh and eighth centuries, replacing earlier
arrangements; for details, see Ishizuka Harumichi, "R6ran, Tonk6 to katenbon," pp. 4-5,
and "Some Marks and Commentaries," p. 178.
242 I.e., a po-yin tzu; see n. 229.

At the end of every volume you finish marking and collating, write: "Collated
and Corrected by Your Servant So-and-so." After you have finished collating the
entire work, submit it to the Department of State Affairs.243

The use of orpiment in collation is of particular interest, because

it may lead to silent and irreversible changes in a work. Orpiment
was used not only for preparing corrected transcriptions of texts, in-
cluding final copies-or "fair copies" (ching-pen **)-but also for
making changes directly on the earlier texts (just as black ink was
used). Orpiment was the preferred medium for erasing errors in the
Sung. Shen Kua explains why this was so, reviewing the other op-
When [staff] in the Academies and Institutes are writing out a fair copy (ching-pen)
and errors are made, they erase them with orpiment. This is the regular method to
be used in collating and changing characters. If you shave [off the ink]244and rinse
[the paper to remove the debris], then you may damage the paper. If you paste [a
slip of] paper over it, it may easily fall off.245If you try to erase it with powder, the
character will not disappear; you may have to use several applications before you

243 Nan Sungkuan-kolu, "Chu-ts'ang," 3.2b-3b. The Chiao-choushih (Shao-hsing 6/6) was

compiled by Fan Ch'ung (Senior Compiler in the Historiography Institute), and edited by
Wu Piao-ch'en NM (chin-shih1109) (Vice Director of the Palace Library). Winkelman
comments that the fact that the instructions were publicly displayed "suggests that they were
actually followed"; "Imperial Library," p. 32.
244 Shaving to remove errors goes back to pre-Han times, when book-knives were used to

erase errors from bamboo and wood writing-tablets; see Ch'ien Ts'un-hsiin, "Han-tai shu-
tao k'ao f*147-}2J#, in Ch'ing-chuTung Tso-pinhsien-shengliu-shih-wu-suilun-wen-chi W
ttto1ffi gSi5f:t, pt. 2, CYYYwai-pien, no. 4 (1961), pp. 997-1007, rpt. in Chung-
kuoshu-chilun-wen-chi, pp. 43-56; trans.John H. Winkelman,"A Studyof the Book-knife
in the Han Dynasty," Chinese Culture12.1 (1971):87-101. Errorsin textswrittenon waxed
papercouldalsobe removedby shavingoffthe layerof ink. Forexample,block-copy,which
was writtenon suchpaper,was traditionallycorrectedby this means;see Ch'ien, "Chung-
kuo tiao-panyin-shuachi-shutsa-t'an," Chung-kuo shu-chilun-wen-chi,p. 141.
Note thattheusageof kan fii to mean"to correct(a text)"is derivedfromtheearlierprac-
tice of shavingoff errorsfromwritingtablets,then smoothingoverthe spot for retranscrip-
tion;hencetheShuo-wen definitions:k'an= t'o dJJ,
chieh-tzu andt'o = shanMIJ("cut out"); see
Shuo-wen chu4B.45b.In Han texts,kan is usedin differentcontextsto mean"scrape
off(errors)"andalternatively"cut (a textin stone)".It is fromthe latterusagethatkan also
comesto mean "engrave(a woodblock,for printing)."
245 The use of pastederrataslipsoriginatesin the Six Dynasties,or earlier;such red silk
and paperslipsaredescribedin Ch'i minyao-shu3.15b. The SungbibliophileTu Ting-sheng
7tL (fl. 998-1003)is oftencitedfor his use of errataslipsfor makingcorrectionson bor-
rowedbooks(correctingerrorsin loan-bookswas an old tradition);see HuangHsiu-fu AbK
2 (d. after 1006),Mao-t'ing ko-hua ; (Chin-tai
pi-shuedition, 15thser.), 10.4b-5a;
quotedin Ts'ang-shu shih1.15; Pan Mei-yuieh,Ts'ang-shu
chi-shih chiakao, p. 62.

succeed in totally obliterating it.246 But with orpiment, one stroke and it's gone,
and it will never fade or flake off, even after a long time. The people of former times
called it ch'ien-huang *.247 So there seems to be a tradition behind its use.248

Orpiment was prized for its ability to make unwanted characters dis-
appear permanently. The use of orpiment in collating documents
reflects the traditional emphasis on improving texts in transmission.
It also indicates a lack of concern for preserving or documenting
previous textual states, exhibited in the alternative practice of black-
ing out errors. In this respect, Sung practices clearly differ from
Ch'ing practices, which reflect a differently balanced set of priori-
ties, where improvement and preservation are more equal concerns.
The potential for abuse in undocumented emendation was, of
course, recognized. Shen Kua himself reports that in the imperial
libraries "many former collation officials lacked a sense of profes-
sional ethics. They merely took an old document and blotted out a
character with ink, then wrote in the same character in an annota-
tion to the side, so that they would meet their quota for the day." 1249
Sometimes such revisions went too far. In 1025, one Ch'en Ts'ung-
i WWRw (Collator of the Academies and Institutes, assigned to the In-
stitute for the Glorification of Literature) was dismissed from his
post (together with his colleagues) for having made "reckless
erasures and interpolations" in the text of Shih-tai hsing-wang lun t
ftW 4. This was one of the works in the T'ai-ch'ing lou collection,
which, having survived the palace fire, was fated to be recollated by

246 The powder is ch'ien-fen (lead powder). Its use goes back to the Han. An additional prob-
lem with lead powder was that it faded or darkened after a long time, making the correction
illegible; see Ch'eng-shihchia-shutu-shufen nien-jihch'eng2.26a for recipes, instructions, and
warnings on use (Ch'eng Tuan-li recommends errata slips instead); also Ts'ang-shuchi-yao8a;
trans. Fang, "Bookman's Manual," p. 234.
247 Schafer says that Shen Kua has confused orpiment (tz'u-huang)with massicot (chi'en-

huang)here; "Orpiment," p. 78 n. 84. But the phrase ch'ienhuangprobably refers to ch'ien-

fen (lead powder) and tz'u-huang,or some combination of the two employed in making cor-
rections, as well as ruling columns. This usage is seen in YuianChen's JE# (779-831) poem,
"Ch'ou Han-lin Po Hsiueh-shihtai-shu i-pai-yiin" ffIt - AA:"The fish-Lu
errors aren't hard to discern / But I'm too lazy to take up the lead and orpiment" AWNV
t n ff; Yuan-shihCh'ang-ch'ingchi jE;FA** (SPTK edition, 1st ser.), 10.43b.
248 Meng-hsipi-t'anchiao-cheng 1.67, no. 18; quoted in Huang-ch'aolei-yuian,"Tz'u-huang t'u
tzu," 31.10b.
249 Meng-hsipi-t'anchiao-cheng 11.411, no. 193; quoted in Huang-ch'aolei-yiuan," Chih pien-
hsiu chi, " 31. 10a-b.
Ch'en, thereafter to be reproduced in multiple copies to restock the
imperial library.250As students of T'ang poetry will recall, the same
individual is remembered affectionately by Ou-yang Hsiu as a true
scholar and lover of ancient scholarship and the host of a famous col-
lation party, during which guests were invited to fill a lacuna in a
line from Tu Fu by guessing at the original character. Ch'en later
discovered that all the conjectures were wrong.25"
A different editorial disposition developed in the later Sung. It is
evidenced by increasing numbers of scrupulously researched and
documented textual studies of classical, literary, and historical
works by private collators. These include-in addition to the previ-
ously cited influential works by P'eng Shu-hsia (1192), Mao Chui-
cheng (1225), Liao Ying-chung (1270), and Fang Sung-ch'ing
(1 189)-Hung Hsing-tsu's AH. (1090-1155) study of the Songs of
theSouth(Ch 'u-tz'u k'ao-i i Ts'ai Meng-pi's 3fi critical edi-
tion of Tu Fu's poetry (Ts'ao-t'ang shih chien VMP; 1204), and
Wang Ying-lin's notes in his Reports of Hard-won Knowledge (K'un
hsueh chi-wen).252
The editorial orientation displayed in such textual studies some-
times carries over into other types of editing projects. But it need
not do so, and in this regard, Chu Hsi's work is exemplary because
it expresses the full range of options: as the editor of a textual study
of Han Yii's collection, which builds on Fang Sung-ch'ing's work,
Chu follows the genre conventions in methodically documenting all
proposed changes. As the editor of the Lun-yu and Mao Shih, he
confines his textual arguments to interlinear annotations, following

250 Accounts of this episode are given in SHY: "Chih-kuan," ts'e 55, 4.6b (Ch'ien-hsing 3/

6); Yuan Chiung AR (ca. 1102-1204), Feng-ch'uanghsiao-tuJ*oJ' (Shuo-fuedition, 32d

ser.), 2.6a; and YH: "I-wen," "Ching-te T'ai-ch'ing lou ssu-pu shu mu" 52.35a (T'ien-
sheng 3/6/ping-ch'en).The dismissals occurred after the project ended.
251 See [Liu-i] shih-huaA-Si4, Ou-yangkungchi 128.3b-4a. The anecdote is translated by
Jonathan Chaves in Mei Yao-ch'enandtheDevelopment ofEarlySungPoetry(New York: Columbia
University Press, 1976), p. 99; see also discussion in Cherniack, "Three Great Poems," pp.
252 On Fang Sung-ch'ing, Han chi chi-cheng,see discussion in Charles Hartman, "Prelimi-
nary Bibliographical Notes on the Sung Editions of Han Yu's Collected Works," in Critical
Essayson ChineseLiterature,ed. William H. Nienhauser, Jr. (Hong Kong: Chinese University
of Hong Kong, 1976), pp. 92-95. For other works, see Chiang Yiian-ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ou hsueh
shih, pp. 132-48; Chang Shun-hui, Kuangchiao-ch'ouliieh, pp. 126-27; Hu P'u-an and Hu
Tao-ching, Chiao-ch'ou hsuieh,pp. 26-36.
the example set by Cheng Hsiian, leaving the received text intact.
But as the editor of the Hsiao ching, he presents a revised "model
text" that ignores the traditional state and organization or the clas-
sic.253Yet the popularity of textual studies, especially noticeable af-
ter the mid-Southern Sung, tells us of increased public interest in
textual histories and growing awareness of the utility of preserving
such material more carefully.
This shift may be behind a change in correction procedures,
noted by Chao Yen-wei: "When the people of former times found
a mistake in the transcription of a character, they would blot it out.
But most people today do not erase. They add the annotation pu I-
beside the character. The common expression for this sign is pu-sha
JR, but no one knows what it means."254 Chao compares the sign
F to the sign p used for the same purpose in a holograph by Ssu-ma
Kuang. He interprets 0 as the right half of the character fei 4r
(wrong), similar in meaning to the deletion sign (san-tien). Although
these signs antedate the Sung,255Chao's observation that his contem-
poraries are erasing and blotting less suggests some change in habits
by the early thirteenth century. Shen Kua (1031-95), who personal-
ly recommends orpiment for expunging errors in a final collation,
reports that in his time rank-and-file collators were no longer permit-
ted to erase errors directly on the documents they were reviewing.
They were permitted only to circle the errors in vermilion. The
documents were then referred to editors in the Compiler-Collator

253 For details on Chu Hsi's editing practices, see references cited in n. 50. Chu Hsi divid-

ed the Hsiaochinginto one section of canonical text (ching)and fourteen sections of commenta-
ry (chuan),and excised some 233 characters. His handling of the text was much criticized in
the Ch'ing as a baneful influence on textual scholarship; see comments in Chiang Yuian-
ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ouhsuehshih, pp. 150-53.
254 Yun-luman-ch'ao 3.7. Compare the detailed description of textual changes made by Su
Shih in drafts of two memorials, which were carved on stelae in Shu, in Fei Kun R X (chin-
shih 1205), Liang-hsiman-chih B* (1192) (Chih-pu-tsuchai ts'ung-shuedition, 2d ser.,
1776), "Shu-chung shih-k'o Tung-p'o wen-tzu kao" 6.1a-2a, quoted in Shu-linyi-hua 1.5.
Many of Su's writings found their way into such unauthorized stone engravings; see Chu
Ch'uan-yui *%4W,Chung-kuo hsin-wenshih FTOfi P (Taipei: T'ai-wan shang-wu yin-shu-
kuan, 1967), pp. 8, 161; cited and discussed in Stuart Sargent, "Contexts of the Song
Lyric. "
255 On Tun-huang usages of these three signs and others employed for the same purpose,
see Li Cheng-yii, "Tun-huang i-shu," p. 98; Kuo-Tsai-i, "Tun-huang hsieh-pen," pp.
Service who determined what changes to make.256In the Yuan, clear
strictures were set on the liberty of palace copyists and collators to
make changes in texts, according to rules handed down in 1287 by
the Censorate (Yii-shih t'ai) to the Department of State Affairs. The
Yuan rules explicitly prohibits those practices sanctioned previously
in the preparation of fair copies:
Henceforth everyone engaged in transcribing documents must transcribe them
carefully. Supervisors will instruct Clerks to be conscientious in collating texts, and
will see to it that there is no dereliction in proofing the work....
Do not shave off, restore, add, change, or erase anything, make any annota-
tions, or use the signs [to flag an error] or Z [to correct an inversion, on the docu-
ment you are transcribing or on the original document from which you are work-
ing] 257
If there is a taboo character, the supervisor in charge will determine how to
resolve the matter.258
The Yuan injunctions imply sharp distinctions among officials in al-
locating authority for introducing textual changes. According to the
anecdotal evidence reviewed above, Sung editorial roles seemed to
have overlapped more, indicating a greater tolerance for shared tex-
tual improvements.
That traditional tolerance was certainly exploited and taxed to
the limit by the spread of printing.
The potential for textual anarchy inherent in earlier collation
procedures was significantly controlled in pre-print days by condi-
tions that restricted collation activities to a relatively small group of
individuals-collators and scholars attached to the court, and pri-
vate book collectors, who were perforce usually very wealthy individ-
uals. The medium itself-manuscript transmission-helped to

256 Meng-hsipi-t'anchiao-cheng 11.411, no. 193; quoted in Huang-ch'aolei-yiian,"Chih pien-

hsiu chi!" 31.10a (the text here reads chienm "in the middle" in place of ts'e IWJ "to the
side"). Shen Kua dates this change to the institution of the Compiler-Collator Service. It it
not clear from the context whether Shen is referring to procedures in the Historiography In-
stitute or those of the Palace Library in general.
257 This interpretation is based on supplementary details in the accompanying desk sheet;
see [Ying-yin Yuan-pen]Ta Yuansheng-cheng kuo-ch'aotien-chang J
(ca. 1321, supplemented in the Chih-chih period [1321-23]) (facsimile reprint, 16 ts'e,
Taipei: Ku-kung po-wu-yiian, 1972; reprint, 3 vols., 1976): "Li-pu" t , "An-tu" W
238 Ta Yuansheng-cheng kuo-ch'aotien-chang:"Li-pu" 8, "Pu te kua-pu tzu-yang," 14.9b.
confine the problem of textual disorder to single copies and their
limited posterity. The explosion in the book supply during the Sung
changed this, putting books within the reach of almost all intellec-
tuals, providing an outlet for the expression of new ideas on old
texts, offering everyone a chance to play the game. At the very least,
printing made the consequences of the earlier habits spectacularly
visible. But it is likely that expanding print-publication also con-
tributed to a real acceleration in the rate of textual shape-shifting, as
the forceful dynamics of print-transmission converged with a
realignment of the balance of power in matters of textual authority,
favoring the individual scholar-editor.
As we have said, collation had traditionally played an important
role in private book-collecting. Great collectors were often learned
bibliophiles who took pride in collating their acquisitions, rather
than hiring others to tend to the task. Their notes were felt to en-
hance the value of the original texts. The T'ang historian Wei Shu
i'AN (d. 757), longtime Curator of the Palace Library, is said to have
amassed 20,000 chaan of scrolls, all of which he collated and verified
himself. His entries "in yellow and black" were said to be detailed
and careful, unsurpassed by editions in the palace collection.259 This
tradition continued into the Sung. References to incessant collation
activities by book collectors are so common as to constitute a cliche
in biographical notices, grave memoirs (mu-chih ming AlZI), and
descriptions of conduct (hsing-chuangfThk), and they crop up often in
literary notes and gazetteers.260Thus Wang Ming-ch'ing reminisces

259 Hsin Tang shu (PNPS edition), 132.5b.

For an overview of collation activities by Sung book collectors, see P'an Mei-yuieh,
Ts'ang-shuchiak'ao, pp. 9-10. On the southern tradition, see Chiao-shih pi-shenghsii-chi4.12b-
13a. For details on collectors who were noted collators, see entries in Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih
[here TSS], P'an Mei-yiieh, and Fang Chien-hsin, "Sung-tai ssu-chia ts'ang-shu pu-lu," on
the following persons: Kao Ti iE%M (902-85), TSS 1.15; Sun Kuang-hsien * (d. 968),
TSS 1.2, P'an, pp. 32-33; Pi Shih-an i (938 or 940-1005), TSS 1.10-11, P'an, pp. 57-
59; Chao Kan fi: (982-1003), Fang, 36:233; Li Chung-yen -{+f+M (982-1058),
Fang,35:234; P'eng Ch'eng 3 (985-1049), Fang, 36: 240; Tu Ting-sheng, TSS 1.15,
P'an, p. 62; Sung Shou, TSS 1.12-13, P'an, pp. 67-70; Kuo Yu-chih I:&A (1008-71),
Fang, 36: 237; Sung Min-ch'iu, P'an, pp. 89-92; Liu Chih %q (1030-97), P'an, pp. 112-
13; K'ung Wen-chung TLZf+ (1037-87), Fang, 35: 225; Wang Ju-chou ki4i3 (chin-shih
1053), Fang, 35: 223; Kuo Feng-yiian WARq (1040-99), Fang, 36: 238; Chang Fu
(1045-1106), Fang, 36: 240; Ch'en Ching-yuian |Wj (d. after 1100), P'an, pp. 124-25;
Ch'ao Yueh-chih ,ML (1059-1129), P'an, pp. 129-30; Chang Yui MA (d. 1105), TSS
about his grandfather whose book collection grew, as he traveled
through the empire, to many tens of thousands of chiuan,all of which
he collated personally.26' And Lu Yu describes the poet Ho Ghu RX
(1052-1205) as an inveterate collector who loved to collate books:
"The vermilion and yellow never left his hand" tt1t.262

Printing eventually made it possible for most Sung scholars to

become book collectors and practice collation. Judging from the
sheer abundance of collation notes that swell shih-hua and pi-chi mis-
cellanies and the number of titles composed and published on this
subject in the Sung, collation was, notwithstanding Yeh Meng-te's
gloomy assessment, one of the most durable enthusiasms of Sung
literati. The vermilion and yellow brushes never left their hands.
Yet it would be wrong to discount this as a mere pastime. The sig-
nificance of such activities may be seen when we reflect on the sanc-
tification of acts of textual transmission in Confucian culture and
the understanding of transmission as an opportunity to improve

1.24, P'an, pp. 132-33; Huang Po-ssu IJUT. (1079-1118), P'an, pp. 145-46; Chu Cho 9
f* (1086-1163), Fang, 35: 227; Li Ch'ing-chao and Chao Ming-ch'eng, TSS 1.30-32, P'an,
pp. 148-49 (both quoting "Chin-shihlu hou-hsiu"); Lin T'ing t1;, TSS 1.36-37, P'an, pp.
153-54; Mr. Chu * (grandfather of Chu Hsiian *f), TSS 1.34-35; Fang Chien 7bj$i
(chin-shih1118), TSS 1.34, P'an, pp. 155-56; Chao Lin "i, Fang, 36: 234; Ch'ao Kung-
wu, P'an, pp. 164-70; Tuan Ch'ung R4 (fl. 1111-18), Fang, 36: 234-35; Liu I-feng lwIx
(1110-75), TSS 1.39-40, P'an, pp. 171-78; Fang Yui-pao i1TV (fl. 1146), Fang, 35:224;
Hu Ch'ang-ling (1113-92), Fang, 36:233; Li T'ao, Fang, 35:233; Ch'ien Wu a
(1119-78), Fang, 36: 236; Fang Sung-ch'ing, Fang, 35: 224-25; Wang Po-ch'u IITU
(I132-1201), Fang, 35: 223; Ts'ao Chung f (1135-1202), Fang, 36: 239; Kao Yiian-chih
iM5dt (1142-97), Fang, 36: 238; Kuo Shu-i gtZ (1155-1233), Fang, 36: 237-38; Yang
T'ai-chih AC? (1169-1230), Fang, 35: 231-32; Ch'en Chin-chai | R (1215-98), Fang,
35: 237; Wen I Z: (1215-56), Fang, 35: 224. One collector who cannot be listed with the
above company is Wu Fei J%T(1104-83). His embarrassment at being too busy to collate his
collection personally is the subject of an anecdote in Hui-chulu 1. 15a revealing the social
norms observed by collector-collators.
261 Hui-chuhou-lu fIWfi (Chin-taipi-shu edition, 14th ser.), 7.15a; quoted in Ts'ang-shu
chi-shihshih, 1.27; P'an Mei-yuieh, Ts'ang-shuchia k'ao, p. 136. His grandfather was Wang
Hsin IF_.
262 Lao-hsueihanpi-chi 8.8b; quoted in Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 1.25. Lu Yu describes his own
affection for collation in "Yui-hou chi-liang liao chien-ch'ieh-chung ku-shu yu kan shih" 1if1
;gg"gg@ Wt" (After the rain, the weather is extremely refreshing. I arrange the
old books in the cases and am moved to compose a poem): "The old man from Li-tse-just
over his illness- / Happily sets about getting his West Studio library in order / Ten years be-
fore the lamp, collated with his own hand / Between the lines and in the margins, top and bot-
tom-all yellow and vermilion"; quoted in Ts'ang-shuchi-shihshih 1.41.
texts. For the first time in Chinese history, book-collecting literati
in the Sung, partly as the result of printing, broadly realized the old
cultural dream of approaching Confucius in becoming active col-
laborators in textual transmission. If scholar-editors were to turn to
contemporary textual scholarship on the Confucian classics for
guidance in this matter-as well they might, since classical scholar-
ship had traditionally set the standards for scholarship on non-
canonical texts-in the late Sung they might encounter Wang Po's
exhortation in his revision of the Mao Shih: "In reading a text,
you must be skeptical. If you suspect an error but have no means
of investigating it, the deficiency is excusable. But if you fail to
doubt when doubt is called for, the error lies in your carelessness." X263
Consensus on what constituted objective grounds for emendation,
and codification of principles of collation would not come until some
centuries later, in the evidential scholarship of the Ch'ing. In the
meantime, the question of authority in texts remained ambiguous,
while opportunities and incentives for textual innovation were
abundant and everywhere at hand. What needs to be understood
with far greater clarity than exists at present is how these conditions
shaped the texts that passed through Sung transmission and through
which we have come to see the features of the pre-print Chinese



This Appendix provides a list of common types of simple textual

errors, organized under six categories: (1) substitutions, (2) omis-
sions, (3) additions, (4) transpositions, (5) confusions between the
text proper and annotations, and (6) errors resulting from signs or
faulty punctuation. By "common types of errors," I mean errors
that are not genre-specific, but tend to occur generally in Chinese
textual transmission due to the nature of the Chinese writing sys-
tem, the traditional method of transcription (writing in vertical
columns, from right to left, with little or no punctuation), or the rela-
263 Shih i, "Feng-hsiu pien," 2.13a.
tive arrangement of text and commentary in standard book formats
set by the treatment of canonical works.264 By "simple textual
errors," I mean one-step or single-stage errors. For the sake of clarity,
I have restricted most of my examples to those of this type. Single-
stage errors serve as the building blocks for more complex types of
errors also found in Chinese texts. In reality, Chinese textual er-
rors, like Western textual errors, often involve more than one kind
of change. They are compound, multi-stage affairs. For instance, a
change in a single character due to inadvertent mistranscription,
editorial emendation, or damage to a document, may create a prob-
lem prompting a variety of subsequent changes by later editors or
copyists, all aimed at improving the intelligibility of the passage in
which that character appears-one or more characters may be sub-
stituted, a word or phrase may be excised, and individual characters
or larger segments may be transposed.

264 For pre-Han and Han documents, the formats include: (1) text and commentary not

combined in the same work, but circulated independently, and (2) text and commentary com-
bined in the same work but separated, with either (a) the chapter text presented first as an dis-
tinct unit and the commentary afterwardsas a distinct unit, or (b) a line of text presented as a
unit, alternating with commentary starting on the following line. Another arrangement, in-
troduced in the later Eastern Han and popularized since the Wei-Chin period (third-fourth
centuries), is (3) text and commentary combined in the same work, in a continuous format,
with commentary interspersed in the text in the form of interlinear notes, and subcommenta-
ry circulated independently. An additional format, popularized since the mid-Southern
Sung, with earliest known examples from the Ch'un-hsi period (1174-90), is (4) text, coin-
mentary, and subcommentary combined in the same work, in a continuous format, with the
subcommentary appended to the commentary in expanded interlinear notes.
On formats 1-3, see Ch'ien HsiuanO;, "Ku-shu cheng-wen yu chieh-shuo t'i-li k'ao" !
9:E;S<g&KfIJ*, Nan-chingshih-yuanhsueh-pao(she-huik'o-hsuieh pan) 2 (1981): 38-41;
Nait6 Torajir6, "Shoshoseigikaidai," pp. 109-11, reprinted in Naito Konanzenshu7:197-98,
trans. Ch'ien Tao-sun, "Shangshu cheng-ichieh-t'i," pp. 31-32. Format 3 is traditionally re-
garded as an innovation by the commentator MaJung .%Th(79-166), first used in his edition
of the ChouIi. K'ung Ying-ta is responsible for the attribution; see Mao Shihcheng-i1.1.269b.
Tu Yu used the same format in his edition of the Tsochuan;see Ch/'un-ch/'iu Tsochuancheng-i,in
Shih-san-ching chu-shu,1.5c.
The printing of editions of the classics in format 4 is an innovation claimed by the Eastern
Liang Che Circuit Tea and Salt Supervisorate, as attested by the printer Huang T'ang's Ik
)Mcolophon to Li-chicheng-i(dated 1192); see Chung-kuopan-k'ot'u-lu, pl. 72. Details on these
editions are given in Shu-linch'ing-hua,"Sung k'o ching chu-shu fen-ho chih pieh, " 6.146-47;
Nait6 Torajiro, p. 125 (in Naito Konanzenshu,7: 207-8; trans. Ch'ien Tao-sun, pp. 38-39);
Nagasawa Kikuya, "Jusankyochuso eifu" t it (1942), in Nagasawa Kikuya
chosakushiui3:341-42; Abe Ryulichi "So-Gen hanponshi," p. 18; and Edgren, "Southern
Song Printing," pp. 26, 28-29.
In the list, each category is divided into several subcategories,
designated as 1.1, 1.2, etc. To qualify, a subcategory has to meet
the criterion of "being a common error" by appearing in all three
of these taxonomies:
1. Wang Shu-min, "T'ung li," in Chiao-ch'ou hsiieh.265In his
extensive study of errors occurring at various stages in the
manuscript and print transmission of the Confucian classics,
pre-Han philosophical works, and the Shih-chi, Wang carefully
evaluates earlier opinions by textual authorities and offers
many original contributions.
2. Wang Li-ch'i fEilff, "Tu chi chiao-wen shih-li" ftLVWZ"Wl,
in Wang Li-ch'i lun-hsiieh tsa-chu Tf1JMAW* (Peking: Pei-
ching shih-fan hsiieh-yiian ch'u-ban-she, 1990), pp. 117-
47.266 This study analyzes errors found in Sung and Yuan im-
prints of Tu Fu's poems. Tu Fu was popularly canonized as
China's greatest poet in the Sung, at a time when his collection
was in a relatively inchoate state. Definitive texts had not yet
been established. Individual readers were compelled to scruti-
nize the texts for themselves, a task for which most felt prepared
by their rhetorical training as scholar-poets. Given the status
of Tu Fu's poetry, the pressures to achieve textual perfection
were substantial. The texts were particularly susceptible to
change in regional print transmission. These circumstances
contributed to widespread variations which have long been the
focus of scholarly concern.267
3. Ch'en Yuan, Chiao-k'an hsiiehshih-li.268This study analyzes tex-

See nn. 14, 21.

Wang's study was originally serialized in Hsi-pei ta-hsuiehhsuieh-pao , 3
(1980): 39-46, 4 (1980): 15-21, 59.
I have taken up some of the variant issues in "Three Great Poems," pp. 71-91, and
"Towards a Methodology for Establishing a Text for Du Fu: Evaluating Textual Varia-
tion," paper delivered at the 202d Meeting of the American Oriental Society, Cambridge,
Mass., March 1992. For bibliographic details on the editions cited by Wang Li-ch'i, see
Cheng Ch'ing-tu 0 , et al., comp., Tu chi shu-mut'i-yaoft- U E; (Tsinan: Ch'i Lu
shu-she, 1986), and Chou Ts'ai-ch'iuan, Tu chi shu-lu; and Cherniack, "Three Great
Poems," pp. 304-8.
268 See n. 218. Ch'en's work is a companion to his early textual study of the 1908 edition,

Yiian tien-changchiao-pu i (in Li-yun shu-wu ts'ung-k'o, 1931; facsimile reprint,

Taipei: Wen-hai ch'u-pan-she, 1967).
tual errors occurring in the transmission of the Yuan institution-
al compendium, Ta Yuan sheng-chengkuo-ch'ao tien-chang (ca.
1321, supplemented in the Chih-chih period [1321-23]), at the
time the work was reengraved in 1908 (at Fa-hsiieh t'ang &*,
Peiping) under the direction of Tung Shou-chin Wj*.269 The
new edition, popularly known as Shen-k'o Yuan tien-chang tMAI
to, after Shen Chia-pen t&* (1840-1913), who provided a
colophon, was prepared from a problematic Yuan manuscript
in the Ting family library (Hang-chou).270 As Ch'en observes in
his afterword to Chiao-k'an hsiiehshih-li, virtually everything that
can go wrong in transmission went wrong with this edition,
making the Yuantien-changa useful casebook for the study of tex-
tual error.
In my list, subcategories that comprise noticeably distinct varie-
ties of errors are further divided into sub-subcategories and their
components, designated as 1.1.1. and, etc. These subdivi-
sions are for the sake of convenience and are not meant to be exhaus-
The examples cited in the subcategories and their subdivisions
are drawn from the above works by Wang Shu-min, Wang Li-ch'i,
and Ch'en Yuan; also Yuan Chiang-ch'ing, Chiao-ch'ouhsuiehshih,271
and other sources as appropriate. These include specialized studies
by Ch'en Yuan (on taboos),272Yang Shu-ta (on punctuation errors),273
and Kuo Tsai-i (on the characteristics of Tun-huang transcriptions
and errors committed in modern retranscriptions published in Tun-
huang pien-wen chi #MWM, ed. Wang Chung-min IE- et al., 2
vols. [1957, reprint; Peking: Jen-min wen-hsiieh ch'u-pan-she,

269 Collected in Tung's Sung-fenshih ts'ung-k'an,1st ser., 1908; facsimile reprint, 2 vols.,

Taipei: Wen-hai ch'u-pan-she, 1964.

270 See Ting Ping TPi (1832-99), comp., Shan-pen shu-shihts'ang-shuchih r= FE$

(privately printed, 1901; facsimile reprint, Ch'ing-jenshu-mut'i-pa ts'ung-k'an,no. 2), 13.1 1b-
12a. The Yuantien-changtext may be compared with a facsimile reprint of a Yuan edition,
[Ying-yinjYuan-penTa Yuansheng-cheng kuo-ch'aotien-chang;see n. 257.
271 See n. 22.
Shih hui chui-li4ffi4ilJ (1928; in Li-yun shu-wu ts'ung-k'an, 1933; revised edition,
Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1962).
273 Ku-shuchui-tou rJ.wsilJ (Peking: Chung-hua shu-chui, 1954), reprinted in
Ku-shui-i chu-li tengch'i-chung.
1984], and elsewhere).274
The treatment of taboo characters (hui-tzu St) in this list (see
10. 1) requires a word of explanation, since taboo observances neces-
sitate textual changes that may not involve textual errors. Generally
speaking, certain characters were considered taboo because they oc-
curred in the names of respected persons or conversely, in names
that were abhorrent. Such characters were therefore avoided (hui-pi
URE) in writing. Homophones of taboo characters (hsien-ming Ot),
and characters with phonetic components having the same shape as
the taboo character were also avoided (regularly, since the T'ang).
Private taboos were observed by single individuals. But state-wide
taboos applied to everyone. The scope of the taboos and the severity
of their enforcement varied from period to period. The use of
taboos, although evident in pre-Han and Han texts, became
pronounced beginning in the T'ang. After periods of expansion and
stringent enforcement in the Sung and Chin, taboos were aban-
doned in the Yuan, resumed in the Ming, then elaborated and
strongly enforced in the Ch'ing. Enforcement was always strictest
in official writings, where government control was strongest.
As a rule, taboos applied to all contemporary compositions and
most contemporary transcriptions of earlier works. Although cer-
tain works were exempted in different periods, when earlier works
were retranscribed or printed, they normally underwent some type
of textual transformation owing to observances of taboos. Charac-
ters occurring in the personal name of the reigning ruler (yui-min ,
were tabooed in every period since the Ch'in. The personal
names of the ruler's immediate ancestors (including the names of de-
ceased former rulers, proscribed as miao-hui MU, "ancestral temple
taboos"), and the personal name of Confucius were tabooed since
the Han (observance of the latter varies). Depending on the period,
taboos were also applied to the personal names of various members
of the imperial household (the empress, a favored consort, the
heir-apparent, for example), and additional characters repugnant to
the reigning dynasty (for example, the character an %, removed
from place-names by the T'ang Emperor Su-tsung A [r. 756-62]
after the onset of the rebellion led by An Lu-shan 91aI, and the

274 See n. 225.

characters hu, lu, i, and ti MFtk, all derogatory names for barbari-
an peoples, tabooed during the Manchu Ch'ing dynasty). Individ-
ual authors might also observe taboos on characters that occurred in
the personal names of their father and grandfather. In the Shih-chi,
for example, Ssu-ma Ch'ien replaced t'an Mf (his father's name)
with t 'ung rpJ,"same. " Characters offensive to the author might also
be tabooed. Thus, after the conquest of Northern China by the
Chin Ijurchens], Sung loyalists avoided the character chin *, and
during the Yuan dynasty, Chinese loyalists shunned the character
yuan ic.
Taboo characters could be replaced by substitute characters, omit-
ted entirely, or handled by other means. A tabooed character could
be replaced variously: (1) by a synonym (normally a one-character
word, but sometimes a two-character word); (2) by a near homo-
phone (an alliterative or [loosely] rhyming character); (3) by a
character that looked similar, in which case the phonetic component
was changed, a radical was added or deleted to change the sound, or
the same character was written minus one stroke. (This last practice
began in the T'ang. All such incomplete [ch'ueh-pi O*] characters
are conventionally pronounced as "mou" X, "so-and-so" or
"such-and-such"); (4) by an unrelated character; or (5) by an all-
purpose substitute, such as the character hui X ("taboo") or the
character mou X. A tabooed character could also be omitted, in
which case (1) the omission was marked by a sign for a lacuna, LI
(see 6.1); (2) the space was closed up and otherwise unmarked (the
character was simply left out); or (3) the space was closed up, but
the omission was marked by an interlinear note. (In the Sung, the
note typically included such phrases as yu-ming OL ["imperial
name"], yu-ming t 'ung-yin Wt 1r1 ["homophone of the imperial
name"], or miao-hui S ["ancestral temple taboo"].) Also, in im-
prints, a tabooed character could be handled by engraving it in-
taglio (mo-wei -M, also yin-wen WZ;). In rare Sung imprints, the ta-
boo was alternatively treated by substituting an etymological gloss
that "spelled out" the shape of the component parts of the character
(ts'ungX, ts'ungY OAO).
No textual changes made in observance of taboos are included in
my list of textual errors; only errors committed after-the-fact, when
the taboo was no longer in force and the original character was
supposed to be restored in retranscription. Then an editor or copyist
might overlook the substitution and neglect to restore the original
character; or, imagining that a substitution had been made when it
had not, he might change the character; or he might misinterpret
the taboo and restore the wrong character.275
Abbreviationsused in the list:
B Yumiko F. Blanford. "A Textual Approach to Zhang-
guo zonghengjiashu. " See n. 25.
CYl Ch'en Yuan. Chiao-k'an hsueh shih-li.
CY2 Ch'en Yuan. Shih hui chu-li.
CYC Chiang Yiian-ch'ing. Chiao-cho'uhsiieh shih.
G A. C. Graham. Later Mohist Logic, Ethics and Science.
Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, The Chi-
nese University of Hong Kong; London: School of
Oriental and African Studies, University of London,
KTI Kuo Tsai-i et al. "Tun-huang hsieh-pen shu-hsieh t'e-li
fa-wei." See n. 225.
LY Wen-wu ch'u-pan-she 0A:tJR?. "T'ang hsieh-pen
Lun-yu Cheng-shihchu shuo-ming" )tKS*GWMk"JRi -)JM.
WW 189.2 (1972): 12-20.
MC Middle Chinese.
MWT1 Chung-kuo k'o-hsiieh-yiian k'ao-ku yen-chiu-so Hu-nan
sheng po-wu-kuan hsieh-tso hsiao-tsu @1S14 * tt1Wj
i7rYA'tAf1i;FJIil. "Ma-wang-tui erh-san-hao Han-
mu fa-chiieh te chu-yao shou-huo" %, T* -/-t,gRA
StAlll KK 136.1 (1975): 47-57.
MWT2 Ma-wang-tuiHan-mu po-shu ,3T-M gt. Ed. Ma-wang-
tui Han-mu po-shu cheng-li hsiao-tsu 3Ji* Peking:
Wen-wu ch'u-pan-she, 1983.
OC Old Chinese.
P. Pelliot.
S. Stein.
275 For a historical survey of taboo observances, see Ch'en Yuian, Shih hui chu-li. On the
treatment of taboo characters in imprints, see Chang Hsiu-min, Chung-kuoyin-shua shih, pp.
163-68 (Sung), 266 (Chin), 509-10 (Ming), 633-37 (Ch'ing). For further discussion of Sung
taboos, see Niida Noberu fIjEIB1, "Sokaiy5 to S6dai no shuppanho" * L 5MC; ll
it, Shoshigaku , 10.5 (1938): 1-28.
WLC Wang Li-ch'i. "Tu chi chiao-wen shih-li."
WSM Wang Shu-min. Chiao-ch'ou hsaeh.
YST Yang Shu-ta. Ku-shu cha-tou shih-li.

Due to confusions of similarly-shaped characters (1.1), loan

forms (1.2), or characters that sound alike (1.3); miscopying of ob-
scure characters (1.4); the influence of nearby radicals (1.5) and
characters (1.6); fusions (1.7) and fissions (1.8) of characters; men-
tal associations (1.9); replacements of taboo characters (1.10), and
attempts to improve the sense or structure (1.11).
1.1. Confusionsof similargraphicforms(hsing chin erh wu IRAiff,
hsing ssu erh wu liRJii). These may occur at any time, but often
when a text written in a less familiar script is being transcribed.
1.1.1. In ancient script (ku-wen !r?): ,i (A "make") is copied
as ffi (a connective, "and") in Huai-nan Tzu d -, "Jen-chien" A
MIl A2Aja,,-: VWMM (WSM, 137b).
1.1.2. In great seal script (chou-wen WC?): t[ (A, an attributive
pronoun, 'his, its") is copied as Z&("also") more than eighty times
in Mo Tzu M+, including the occurrence marked here in "Ching,
hsia" MT 41: URXJt , Q1X. j, 7li'K-, , 'f', 1,Iif.
(G, pp. 384, 510). This substitution was probably influenced by the
occurrences of ZYin the phrases z1 and i>i\J", preceding and
following. (See 1.6).
1.1.3. In [small] seal script (chuan-wen -i?t): XR($0 "regulate")
is copied as M (AlJ"benefit") in Kuan Tzu Wf, "K'uei tu" Rqg: $k
_T, h,--1) 4A 4 7J ,
)U S14 . dEE
L 14, ft 11F _ _A (WSM,
1.1 4. In clerical script (li-shu M4): A (t0 "wood frame for a
silkworm feeding tray") is copied as4 (M, "unadorned [wood]") in
Huai-nan Tzu, "Shih-tse" RUPIJ:ARAM. (CYC, p. 5, no. 1B).
1.1.5. In regular script (k'ai-shu ef): IL ("north," used as a
loan for JbB"turn one's back") is copied as Xk("fire") in Chuang Tzu
A,"T'ien-ti" it: )M*4ffiWRF. )t_E40fiAkf. (WSM, 141b).
1.1.6. In cursive script (ts'ao-shu I9): d (i& "reason") is
copied as b (i "get"), resulting in d ("without getting any-
thing") as an error for 1Et ("for no reason") in Yen-tzuch'un-ch'iu
Q++tgk, " Nei-p'ien" pF : "Tsa, shang" * ?: 04MfWfQ ,

tEI:p:+:Af-^R, >1% ffi2r-Aff. AXPJ-f? (WSM, 140a-b).

1.1.7. Confusions of variant forms (alternative, or alternative
and non-standard characters (pieh-tzu PIji); popular characters (su-
tzu f6j4); simplified characters (chien-tzu M@). 1 ("gate, close") is written with the variant form 1 , then confused
with 1X, the common variant form for X ("open"), resulting in the T'ai-p'ingyui-
Ian L+AzW (SPTK edition) 58.6b citation of Huai-nanTzu, "Yuan tao" fq5: $iX
-X . . . t?^iPE, nammP ("opens the gate for the Tao"). The last phrase
should read .aimm
("serves as the gateway to the Tao"). (WSM, 141a-b). e ("belt") is written with the Six Dynasties and T'ang variant ,
then confused with ,t ("mat"), resulting in the variant reading cited in Sung-pen
Tu Kung-pu chi 5*#TI St (composite of twelth-century recensions of a 1059 edi-
tion; Hsu ku-i ts'ung-shu , no. 47; Shanghai: Shang-wu yin-shu-kuan,
1957), 16.16a, "Tzu Nang-hsi ching-fei ch'ieh i chu Tung-t'un mao-wu ssu-shou"
~'lltEAXHbJtV;MbE!3t" no. 3: #lV (-ft) X (WLC, p.
126, no. 27; see also WSM, lib). A ("person") is written with the new character $ promulgated by
Empress Wu %, 695-705, then confused with I ("life") in Sung-pen Tu Kung-pu chi
15.28b, "Chieh men shih-erh-shou" F no. 12: Yff IE/ *11A
Ti. (WLC, p. 125, no. 25). A ("money") is written with the Yuan simplified character *<, then
confused variously with X ("long time"), MZ("name"), ?' ("inferior"), and T,
("not"), in Yuan tien-chang, "Li" t 5.35: OltXft; "Hsing" Al]5.9a: t?vA##fi
X1sZt; "Hsing" 8.22a: ti ?T ; and "Hu" P 6.4b: TITIE0tXiM.
(CYI, pp. 63-64).
1.2. Confusionsdue to use of loanforms (chia-chieh {RX). F is bor-
rowed to write ill ("large turtles and large water lizards"), then
changed to kLt' ("snakes and eels") in Huai-nan Tzu, "Lan-ming"
WR': C JK ?'1JJrP (CYC, p. 6, no. IE). Also, V is borrowed to
write L ("grain"), then changed to the similarly-shaped graph X
("each") in Yuan tien-chang, "Ping" f 3.39a: JA0Vi4X. (CYI,
p. 157).
1.3. Confusionsdue to similarities in sound (sheng chin erh wu gf&
ftiX, sheng ssu erh wu lWfifiXS).Such errors occur when a text is
being dictated to a copyist or collator; when the transcriber vocal-
izes the text while copying; or when the transcriber is writing from
memory. Dialect pronunciations are often involved.
1.3.1. t (OC *teg; MC dbi, "carry, bear") is transcribed as X
(OC *tad; MC tai, "belt, to girdle"), resulting in Huai-nan Tzu,
"Ping-13ueh" (MC mirnask"), tistra. (WSM, 142b).
1.3.2. rpl (MC mion, "ask") is transcribed as 0 (MC my'l'n,
"sensitive"), and )01(MC jiou, "Chou [dynasty]") is copied as 911
(MC jiou, "province, county") in a manuscript of the Lun-yu &.,
dated 710 A.D., from Astana, Turfan, Hsin-chiang (the copyist was
twelve years old). (LY, p. 14).
1.3.3. Ik (Huang) is pronounced as EE (Wang), resulting in
many replacements in Yuantien-changof the surname R with the sur-
name SEbeing used as an abbreviated form, e.g., "Hsing" 4.1lb:
FE-9. (CYI, p. 25).
1.4. Miscopyings of obscurecharacters(han-chien tzu More
familiar characters are likely to be substituted, with different mean-
ings. The rare character tR (meaning tW, "wisdom") is changed to
X ("forgive") in Mo Tzu, "Ching, shang" Wt, 40 A, !M (CYC,
p. 6, no. IF) Also, the rare character tIF(an old form for X, "dig
up") is changed to 4H("examine") in Lui-shih ch'un-ch'iu 9,F4,,
"Ch'ui yu" A;t: WX:iA.(WSM, 144b).
1.5. Substitutzonsznvolvingradicals(she p'ien-p'ang erh wu 9
Hi;k. P'ien-p'ang [radical] here means a semantic component [a sig-
nific] occurring on one side of a graph. The shape of a character
may be assimilated to the shape of another character that immedi-
ately precedes or follows it (1.5.1-1.5.3) or that occurs in a neighbor-
ing context (1.5.4), through the addition of a nearby radical (1.5. 1),
the replacement of the original radical by a nearby radical (1.5.2),
or the complete replacement of the original character by a nearby
radical that is itself a character (1.5.3).
1.5.1. A radical may be added to the character that immedi-
ately precedes or follows it: - is added to the character * ("assem-
ble") due to the anticipation of -t (the "divinity" radical) occurring
in the character e ("rites") following, in Chouli )k9, "Ta tsung-po
#z'{M: UIMA1-1. (CYC, p. 9, no. 7).
1.5.2. A radical may replace another radical that occurs in the
same position in the character that immediately precedes or follows
it: 1 ("rice plants") changes to Wj(?) due to the preservation of *
(the "rice" radical) occurring in the preceding character 3 ("non-
glutinous rice"), in Sung-pen Tu Kung-pu chi 3.1Ia, "Hou ch'u-sai
wu-shou" &MAEKA, no. 4: *V*V4. (WLC,p. 127, no. 31).
1.5.3. A radical that is itself a common character may replace
another character that immediately precedes or follows it (,
or one nearby (
112 SUSAN CHIERNIACK If ("ear") replaces Mf ("feather, fur") due to the preservation of IF

(the "ear" radical) occurring in the preceding character X ("pull in, repress") in
Lu-shih ch'un-ch'iu, "Liu-t'ao wu-t'ao" /-\CiC: )AW: , WI1T M. (WSM,
144a). Xc ("water") replaces 4 ("middle") due to the anticipation of Xc (the
"water" radical) occurring in the character iA("ice") later in same phrase, in Lu-
shih ch'un-ch'iu,"Ch'a-ling" &i: Q)1AH)?T. (WSM, 143b-44a).
1.6. Othersubstitutionsof nearbycharacters(she shang-hsia wen erh
wu L:rTZSff;) . A character may replace another character that oc-
curs in the neighboring text proper (cheng-wenit.) (1.6.1) or in ac-
companying annotations (chu-wen 1) (1.6.2).
1.6.1. Influence from the neighboring text proper. I -H
("view its sounds") replaces MMfl ('listen to its sounds") due to
the anticipation of V ("view") which occurs in the same head posi-
tion in the parallel phrase following, in Lu-shih ch'un-ch'iu, "Shih
yin" A': V-A'ffi 0-MP2Z (WSM 142b). Also, T
("peaceful") replaces eT ("implement") due to the preservation of
the character +, which occurs twice in the preceding line, including
one occurence in the same phrase-final position, in P.3808, Ch'ang-
hsing ssu-nien Chung-hsingtienying sheng-chiehchiang ching-wen AX Eti4j
@XSg5gER: tEGGASIiF / tE XA- [T]. A collation
note on the manuscript catches the error. (KTI, p. 341, and correct
Oc,3{AZ to CAflie).
1.6.2. Influence from accompanying annotations. *t ("tree
[-like] withering") replaces A?Li("established his withering") in the
text proper, due to the anticipation of the phrase *t;t ("a tree's
withering") found in the Li Tsan 43: commentary following, in
Han Fei Tzu 44FTf, "Pa-shuo" AN: 4:Mi*. +3it_A:
i t? i*Lth.
(WSM, 143a).
1.7. Fusions of characters.A pair of characters may be misinter-
preted as a single character, or telescoped (ho wei i-tzu -4) as
the result of an eye-skip.
1.7.1 Numbers. -A ("twenty-eight") is fused as ,' ("six"), in
Han Fei Tzu, "Nei chu-shuo, hsia" PF'I1T: / J5I2
MPZ1*1S*Wta, * UVA,
1 PiU1,
ffiAgLAi!(WSM, 165b).
1.7.2. Rare characters. AV- ("Lung said" or "Lung-yen," a
personal name) is fused as Vk(Che, a personal name) in Chan-kuots'e
a11, "Chao ts'e" jX 4: tQ-KCf ("Commander of the
Left Ch'u Che wished an audience with the Queen Dowager [to per-
suade her to send her son as hostage to Ch'i]"). In occurrences of
this sentence in the Ma-wang-tui manuscript Chan-kuo tsung-heng
chia shu 1 and in Shih-chi 43, the relevant phrase is given
as SA- IF ("Ch'u Lung said that he wished" or "Ch'u Lung-yen
wished"). (MWT1, p. 51; MWT2, pp. 60, 61 n. 4; YFB, pp. 192,
1.7.3. Other two-character phrases. In the phrase 4f&R
("Branch Bureau of Military Affairs"), ffX1 (literally, "moving
pivot") is fused as -1(f, "moving") in Yuan tien-chang, "Hsing"
3.16b-17a: ; (CY1, p. 35). Also, Fii? ("white
jade") is fused as A ("august, imperial") in the transcription of
parallel lines from S.4571, Wei-mo-chiehching chiang-chingwen ff*
,Xf:Z, in Tun-huangpien-wen chi, p. 553. The original manuscript
reads: 0L t4 / R, but the second line is tran-
scribed as !FIJM R with a sign for a lacuna (see 6.1) added to
fill out the line. (KTI, pp. 242-43, no. 55).
1.8. Fissions of characters.A single character may be separated
into two characters (fen wei liang-tzu 9AWT).
1.8.1. Numbers. FEt ("thirty") is split into - t ("ten to
twenty") in Yuan tien-chang"Li" 7.8b: 1J4R-L H, 4 t3iEl, ;k-
ot. (CY1, p. 34).
1.8.2. Rare characters. (, "neglect, forget") is split into jE

{? ("rectify one's heart") in the first of two occurrences in Meng Tzu

&T, "Kung-sun Ch'ou, shang" Ofk, L: fitiLCO ftL0 , 9Jt
MbRtO (WSM, 164a). Also, FM, ("mix, see") is split into AMs'1("see
a space"), in Li-chi 43, "Chi-i" Ai QrNIUsAK*;
as noted in
Cheng Hsuian's XA (127-200) commentary. (CYC, p. 7, no. 1H).
1.9. Substitutions due to mental associations (lien-hsiang JRAV).
These involve characters often linked together in familiar names
(1.9.1) and other common locutions (1.9.2).
1.9.1. Names. Ti 9 (the personal name of Mo-tzu, founder of the Mohist school of
philosophy) replaces Mo M (the surname of Mo-tzu, and by extension, "Mohist")
in ChuangTzu, "Lieh Yii-k'ou" Y:6: . . ("The Confucian
and Mohist [brothers] debated with each other. Their father took the side of Ti.")
The last phrase should read: A 5JM "Their father took the side of the Mohist."
(WSM, 4b). Pao Shu-ya ffig (Grandee of Ch'i, and close associate of Kuan-tzu
W-T) replaces the less familiar Tung-kuo Ya JWTI(Grand Remonstrator of Ch'i,
rarely cited in the Kuan Tzu) in Kuan Tzu, "Hsiao-k'uang" 'Jil: 1
(WSM, 146a-b).
1.9.2. Antonyms. k ("fire") replaces Xc ("water") in Kuan
Tzu, "Ch'ing-chung, chia" 4Ep: *i l ("Boil fire to make
salt"; WSM, 4a). Also, A ("enter") is written instead of t ("go
out") in P.2193, Mu-lien yuan ch'i FA a (from a description
of Hell:) # 1ff, 9kX;fl, i nThiRS. The error is caught by the
copyist (or a later collator) who adds the sign 1- (pu-sha, see 6.3.,
6.3.1) beside A to indicate that the character should be deleted.
(KTI, p. 315).
1.10. Confusionscausedby earlierreplacementsof taboocharacters(hui-
tzu St) by othercharactersor signs. An earlier substitution may be un-
recognized and left unchanged after the taboo has passed (even
though other instances of the substitution are recognized and
redressed elsewhere in the same work (1.10.1-2); in the process of
restoration, the wrong character may be supplied (1.10.2); or the
character may be lost (1. 10. 3). Also, if a character was commonly
used as a substitute for a taboo character in an earlier period, other
occurrences of that character may be misinterpreted as reflecting
the observance of the taboo, and hence the character may be
replaced (1.10.4). (See also 5.2.4.)
1.10.1. Replacement characters may be left unchanged. In T'ang citations of pre-T'ang texts, the T'ang taboo character jfi
(MC djhia, dhjio, djhi; "regulate, order") occurring in the name of the T'ang rul-
er, Li Chih 4Fn-, Emperor Kao-tsung r (r. 650-84), is replaced variously by
("order") and . ("regulate") in ChuangTzu, by IL ("transform") in WenTzu 14
T, by & ("govern") in Huai-nanTzu, by % ("pacify") in Han Fei Tzu, by ; (MC
jig, "this" in context) in Lao Tzu, and by )K ("hold, manage" in context) in Han-
shih wai-chuanOfk,,*4 (WSM, 182b-83a); also by Il (MC djhia, "hold") in office
titles (e.g. i) occurring in the Hou Han shu *WX (CY2, p. 98). Preserved in
later transcriptions. In Sung bibliographic sources, the Sung taboo character iE (MC
kiuang, "correct"), occurring in the names of two Sung rulers (Chao K'uang-yin
k&EDL,Emperor T'ai-tsu )Vt, r. 960-76; amd Chao K'uang-i 9A, Emperor
T'ai-tsung t', r. 976-98), is replaced variously by 1:l("correct"), F4 ("correct"),
Y (MC guang, "radiant"), and 1E ("correct"). The Yuan compilers of the Sung
shih 5fr "I-wen chih" gi:,>, not recognizing the replacements, provide multiple
entries for the same work or author. Thus, K'uang-miucheng-su92Efif, 8 chaan,
comp. Yen Shih-ku S1IiW (581-645), is listed as two different works: as K'an-miu
cheng-su1 (in the "Ching-chieh" ON section) and as Chiu-miucheng-su F (in "Ju-
lin" fMM).Also, collected poems by Liao K'uang-t'u M1T1 are listed twice (in
"Pieh-chi" IJ1) as works by different authors, namely, Liao Kuang-t'u 5'X and
Liao Cheng-t'u !EL1(CY2, p. 67). In the early Sung compendium Ts'e-fuyian-kuei lIJf5fr, an entry
reporting changes in place-names due to a T'ang taboo on 4g (MC hang "always")
(occurring in the name of Li Heng, Emperor Mu-tsung , r. 821-24), cites the
taboo character as t (MC zhiang, "always") instead of f-, due to a Sung taboo on
it (occurring in the name of Chao Heng, Emperor Chen-tsung A', r. 998-1022).
In the 1642 re-engraving of the work, the editors overlook the Sung change, and
rather than restoring the original T'ang %-,they replace the Sung t with ': (a
homophone, "experience"), due to a taboo on ', occurring in the name of the
Ming ruler, Chu Ch'ang-lo *T*, Emperor Kuang-tsung tg, r. 1620; see (facsi-
mile reprint of the 1642 edition, Peking: Chung-hua shu-chii, 1960), 3.13a (CY2,
pp. 70-71).
1.10.2. The wrong character may be restored. The character A in the name of a Later T'ang (923-26) rebel, Li
Ts'ung-pin 4EAi, was tabooed in contemporary historical records because it oc-
curred in the names of two Later T'ang rulers (Li Ts'ung-hou 4FIVE, Emperor
Min ; and Li Ts'ung-k'o 1TQI,Emperor Mo *; both r. 934). It was omitted in a
reference to Li Ts'ung-pin as "Li Pin" 4 - in Hsin Wu-taishihVTEfet, chuan40,
"Han Hsun chuan" 04i14, restored correctly elsewhere in the same work (chuan
46, "K'ang Fu chuan" W1#4), but restored incorrectly as JE in editions of Tzu-
chih t'ung-chienWfnAg (CY2, p. 62). Due to T'ang taboos on A, and M (occurring respectively in the
names of Emperor Kao-tsu's AM [r 618-27] grandfather, Li Hu, and father, Li
Ping), the names of the Western Wei (535-56) general Li Hu At and the Northern
Chou (557-81) general Li Ping ONare both written as "Li hui" '# ("Li taboo") in
the C/houshu MJ. In a later transcription (represented by the Chi-ku ko WMA
edition), "Hu" A indiscriminately replaces "hui" X in every occurrence. (CY2,
pp. 54-55).
1.10.3. The taboo character may be lost. The personal name of
Confucius, Ch'iu fi, appears in the T'ai-p'ingyii-lan 3.b citation of
Lieh Tzu A-#, "T'ang wen" Mrl: TLTT-*M W4'JX0Hi: hrVAk+
?, in I-lin et4, and in other texts. Yet it is omitted in Lieh Tzu edi-
tions since the Sung. (WSM, 182a, but citing a T'ai-p'ingyii-lan edi-
tion that reads X in place of E:.).
1. 10.4. Characters wrongly presumed to represent taboo substi-
tutions may be replaced. A Sung attempt to restore occurrences
of the characters t: ("generation, age") and W;("people") in the
Hou Han shu, tabooed in T'ang transcriptions because they appear
in the name of the T'ang ruler, Li Shih-min 4ftj (Emperor T'ai-
tsung, r. 627-50), results in such substitutions as P,,r; ("the com-
mon people, populace") for e& ("menials, criminals"), and Et

("three generations") for { ("The Three Ages" -the Hsia,

Shang, and Chou dynasties). (CY2, pp. 104-5).
1.11. Substitutionsdue to effortsto improvethe sense or rhetoricalstruc-
ture of texts.
1.11.1. Improvements for sense. Attempts to cope with rare usages. Puzzlement over the meaning of
R (usually, "doubt"; rarely, k "plan") in Chuang Tzu, "Ta sheng" At: ,R,ATZ
5XfR t, prompts the replacement of R ("plan") by 0 ("congeal, fix") in edi-
tions by Sung times; first corrected by Su Shih. (WSM, 174b-75a). Corrections of prior errors. Puzzlement over the meaning of f
("transmit"), occurring as an error for the similarly-shaped graph Z ("draw
near") in Huai-nan Tzu "Ping-liieh": IfJ 4 T, 4I1z, prompts the replace-
ment of f by Ts ("get") in the Mao K'un *J* (1512-1601) edition et al. (WSM,
1.11.2. Structural improvements, often carried out to create
parallelisms. The last couplet in Tu Fu, "Ch'iu-hsing pa-shou" #
no. 8, is generated in different versions, reflecting varying
stylistic preferences. Where Sung-pen Tu Kung-pu chi 15.23a has WE
f /lL_, for 'l ("in the past roamed"), 'Ne
("in the past once") is read in Sung and Yuan One ThousandCommen-
tators -* (B* editions, also Tu shih hsiang-chu t?4fJ7 (1703; 2nd
ed., 1713), ed. Ch'iu Chao-ao f#ML (1638-1717), 30; and for Pj
("chant and gaze"), +X ("today gaze") is read in Tu shih hsiang-
chu. These options are combined eclectically by others. (WLC, p.
131, no. 40).


Losses (t'o f) due to physical damage to the document (loss or de-

terioration of the writing medium) (2.1), eye skips (2.2), omission of
sections when the text is being reproduced in a different format (2.3),
and excisions (shan Ji) made to improve the sense or structure of a
text (2.4).
2.1. Losses of writing units. In the old-script version of the Shang
shu , segments of twenty-two and twenty-five characters in
length, matching the number of characters that would have been
written on single bamboo slips in two different formats, are reported
missing from the chapters "Chiu-kao" MAK(one segment) and
"Chao-kao" B- (two segments), by Liu Hsiang WqrriJ (79-8 B.C.).
(Han shu MI* [PNPS edition], "1-wen chih," 30.4b).
2.2. Eye skips, of any length.
2.2.1. Intermediary and concluding characters may be
skipped. >f ("not") is lost (as marked in angle-brackets) in Chuang
Tzu, "Lieh Yiu-k'ou": #K>>QAI. The sense is reversed.
(WSM, 153a-b). The concluding sequence 7hEMW ("They possess
that which screens and hides it.") to a passage in Huai-nan Tzu is
lost, as apparent from the commentary: "Yuian tao": kft*,,tR;2P
ffi_W94R#bbRf<>it- A'R: UWNkJ, &ihffXirg&(CYC,
p. 7, no. H2).
2.2.2. Characters or phrases that should be repeated immedi-
ately may be skipped (haplography). The repetition of W5 ("give it
full rein") is omitted in Lii-shih ch'un-ch'iu, "Shen wei" $A: 419n
WRICL. <W;,>w> *0M7i9> >! (WSM 160b, 208a-b).
2.2.3. In transcription, segments of any length may be skipped
between two points in the text which end with the same character or
phrase. This is seen in such omissions in Yuan tien-changas (from a
passage on rules for proofreading imprints) VANW11, <f7% O'lJ> *
-Y41, . . . ("T'ai-wang" AM 2.22a); and (from a passage on
procedures for registering purchases of poisons for medicinal use)
VP*fQ!. WI&Lk <IVlt?K and seventy-three characters fol-
lowing, ending with WA1iA> # ttt-LF.
("Hsing" 19.40a, 1. 10; CY1, pp. 26-27).
2.3. Losses of text in reformattingor retranscription.The contents of
one fascicle (ts'e J), containing the last six of twelve sections in Ta
Yuan sheng-cheng kuo-ch'ao tien-chang, "Li" 3 (from "Ts'ang-k'u
kuan" A1tW on) are omitted in Yuan tien-chang. (CY1, p. 9).
2.4. Excisions to improvesense or structure.
2.4.1. Improvements for sense. The character A is deleted
from the phrase ;(ErPV ("examine the interior") because 7FE("ex-
amine") has been misconstrued as meaning "to be located at," the
more common usage for ;E, in Huai-nan Tzu "Tao-ying" i-K: t
iXt , 7E<> SfiXt .(WSM, 191lb).
2.4.2. Structural improvements. To create parallel lines, the
character IJ ("profit") is excised from citations of Han Fei Tzu "Pa-
shuo": %t11 +tEtT tAfjAg<fIJ>. (WSM, 193b-94a).

Due to the repetition (tieh A, ch'ung A) of single characters or

phrases from the immediate (3.1) or neighboring context (3.2), and
other interpolations (ch 'an A) to improve the sense or structure of a
text (3.3) (Also see 5.2, 6.4.3).
3.1. Immediate repetitions (dittography). These may occur any-
where (3.1.1), but often at reading pauses induced by breaks in the
syntax (3.1.2) or format (3.1.3). Or they may involve characters
that are apt to occur doubled elsewhere in reduplicative binoms
3.1.1. Random repetitions. The character - ("record") in the
official title I+X ("Assistant Magistrate") is repeated in the tran-
scription of a Tu Fu poem title in Sung-pen Tu Kung-pu chi 9. 2a (table
of contents): ;4ff f (WLC, p. 134, no. 48).
3.1.2. Repetitions at syntax breaks. The sentence-final object
;E (a name) is repeated to become the subject of the sentence that fol-
lows in I Chou shu AM*, "Ta k'ai wu" JtlHAt: W1*f2 0&,
~, i~-4L. . . . The two sentences thus become parallel. (CYC, p.
7, no. 4). Also, the sentence-initial phrase AT ("her village") is
repeated to supply an object for the preceding sentence twice in
Chuang Tzu, "T'ien-yiin" &ifi. A,LffiRWIT
t#.t'fliStt. ]y2X5tS, FCtAiffiT-. (WSM, 209b-10a, fol-
lowing the Ching-tien shih-wen ; punctuation).
3.1.3. Repetitions at format breaks. A character written at the
foot of one column is mechanically repeated at the head of the next
column: X repeated in Yuantien-chang, "Ping" 1. 14a: -p5W-f /X
AR.(CY1, p. 29).
3.1.4. Associations with binoms. Familiar reduplicatives are
created by repetitions of i ("float in the wind") and , ("sudden")
in Huai-nan Tzu, "Ping-liueh": i ut$?. R{1Vi,
99MA, uAPThT.(WSM, 160b).
3.2. Repetitionsfromtheneighboringcontext.Such repetitions may oc-
cur in adjoining phrases that share some of the same characters.
Thus fIJf ("regulate with respect to") is preserved and repeated in
the second reading phrase in Lii-shih ch'un-ch'iu, "Ch'ih-lo" ff#: $a
Sj2d>, tIJ't>>g
0 0
flIJ,W7tig. The sense is thus reversed (CYC,
p. 7, no. 3).
3.3. Otherinterpolationsto improvethe sense or structure.These often
produce parallelism.
3.3.1. Improvements for sense. a ("inferior person") is added
because ? (M, "to value") has been misconstrued as meaning "the
person above, the superior," and 1T ("above-below") is a com-
mon combination, in Chuang Tzu, " Jang-wang" MIE: ?FThti1TEY,
PIfThTiff;A.(WSM, 185b).
3.3.2. Structural improvements. Also, 1 and Jr are added to
parallel lines to create more familiar locutions and retain balanced
lines (overriding the original rhymes), in Huai-nan Tzu, "T'ai-tsu"
*: iiM , &TTNf (r), & ; N (r) t1. ("Perfect gov-
ernance is broadly nurturing / Therefore the inferiors do not rob
one another [originally, &TT4N: Therefore the people do not do
harm, rob] / Perfect centeredness restores purity / Therefore the peo-
ple do not hide their feelings [originally, tff1, with 1 meaning
,J: Therefore the people are not evil-minded.) This may have oc-
curred in more than one stage (WSM, 200a-b).

These include displacements of sections due to disarray or rear-

rangement of the document-caused by decay of the original bind-
ings, or occurring in later editing, transcription, or rebinding (4.1);
inversions (i Z) of characters, reading phrases (4.2), and transposi-
tions of other segments (4.3), due to eye skips or efforts to improve
the sense or structure of the text.
4.1. Writing units may bejumbled. Mixing of slips results in the
transposition in Mo Tzu, "Ching, hsia" 41, of seventy-four charac-
ters (segments B 14b-21 and 22-24a) between i:X (14a) and T7IMI
(14b). (G, pp. 364-65, 368-84, 501-2).
4.2. Charactersand readingphrases (sentences, lines) may be inverted,
usually to improvethe sense.
4.2.1. Characters. *W ("serve Heaven," with * [usually,
"season, time"] used as a loan for 4 ["serve"]) is inverted to
produce the more common locution W* ("Heaven's season[s]")
in Chuang Tzu, "Ta Tsung-shih": W*, grW*t. (WSM, 195a).
4.2.2 Reading phrases. Sentences. The order of the sentences tTffigikfl ("the attractions
of the world cannot debauch him") and WhTfIE! ("Debaters cannot persuade
him") is inverted in Huai-nan Tzu, "Shu chen" iJA: (from a description of a
Taoist True Man:) VTfIEN, WTSM1, St TI H9,T
Bb t!l, XTeX t!l. The sequence should be XX Tffi X it! (twice), X XKffi X it!
(four times). (CYC 9, no. 9).
120 SUSAN CHERNIACK Lines. The order of lines in the Tu Fu couplet, _RRt1 /X

("Li Ling and Su Wu [both Han dyn.] are my teachers / Master Meng's
discourse on literature is even less to be doubted [as a model]"; "Chieh men shih-
erh-shou," no. 5), is inverted in a twelfth-century edition to correct an apparent
problem in the chronology of authors cited, because if is taken as a reference to
Mencius rather than to Tu Fu's contemporary, Meng Yiin-ch'ing iU-P (fl. c.
749); problem noted by Hu Tzu JMffJ(fl. 1147-67); cited as a Sung variant in Tu
Kung-pu chi chien-chu t?TXIgB* (1667), ed. Ch'ien Ch'ien-i 01 (1582-1664),
15. (WLC, p. 134, no. 47).
4.3. Segmentsmay be displaceddue to an eyeskip or a belatedattemptto
remedyan omission in transcription.The contents of an original line of
23-characters in Ta YTansheng-chengkuo-ch'ao tien-chang(reporting an
edict) are moved to a later position on the page and copied in after
the conclusion of an unrelated entry, in Yuan tien-chang, "Li" 4. 7a,
edict beginning 4 moved from 1. 5 to 1. 8 and resuming after tg.
(CYl, p. 8).

5.1. Part of the textproper may be consignedto the commentary.

5.1.1. Text may be miscopied as commentary. A final four-
character text phrase v, UZ4 ("shut his eyes, and let his hand move
at will") drops into the Kuo Hsiang W (d. 312) commentary to
Chuang Tzu, "Hsui Wu-kuei" &tX: V:AMlXAA, 0W1X, fWTiY3
A. ETiAFrS;,, WW M: K . The original commen-
tary, if any, is lost (WSM, 168a-b).
5.1.2. To correct an omission discovered after the text has been
transcribed or engraved, one or more characters may be removed at
that spot and re-entered together with the missing characters in the
small, double-column format used for interlinear commentary.
Omitted text consisting of 46 characters is entered as a little more
than one column of small characters in Yuan tien-chang, "Hu"
1O.4a, beginning with &f- ff (CYI, p. 15).
5.2. Commentaryand otherannotations(glosses and collationnotes) may
be copied into the text. Errors involving glosses are associated with
interlinear-commentary formats (5.2.1). Errors involving collation
notes occur because notes -whether they are providing replacement
characters for errors or supplying characters omitted in the text-
are usually written in the same position, to the right of the relevant
text character. Collation notes correcting omissions are also some-
times written between characters, where glosses may be expected;
from this position, they may enter the text proper in later transcrip-
tions (5.2.2).
5.2.1. Commentary. A long segment from a subcommentary
by Ch'eng Hsiian-ying Stl; (fl. 630), enters the middle of Chuang
Tzu, "T'ien-yuin" WAE:VF9E:&#A'A M ? -7-WLJJ, ffiLJJ, ff;
J;-Ag, 9ALltiF. [The subcommentary begins, in double-column
format: Y,: , Alt . . . ij: &Ar:t n tt. The single-column
text format resumes, with the interpolated subcommentary: A
X and thirty-one additional characters, ending with PM-IWV9iY, t&1
RV4*]E A9, A4 . .. . (WSM, 170a-b).
5.2.2. Marginalia. A gloss written to the right of or under a character may be added to
the text. Thus - (indicates comparative degree, "than"), once written as a gloss
on An ("comparable to"), is copied into Han Fei Tzu, "Shou tao" qi: fIJ4kfir,n
R. (WSM, 171b). A textual variant written to the right of or under a character may be
added to the text. Thus a ("want"), noted as a variant for X ("give gift, bribe"),
is copied into Lu-shih ch'un-ch'iu "Shen chi" WE: R;LM W-1, UtfT.
(WSM, 167b). A correction character written to the right of a text character and in-
tended as a replacement for that character, may instead be added to the text while
the unwanted character is retained. Thus A ("person"), intended as a replace-
ment for the T'ang taboo character f ("people") (see 1.10.4), appears together
with the undeleted f in Shih-chi,"Li Sheng chuan" IFW*: 3EXKlAA3 , TfihT
AUA k (CY2, p. 56). Also, NEi("not have"), intended as a replacement for the
erroneous character ?G ("origin;" a mistake for the similarly-shaped i [a variant
form of P]), appears together with the uncorrected ?G in Yuantien-chang,"Li" a
4.9b: P. RIVA121fW (CY1, p. 32).


6.1. Errors involving signsfor a lacuna. The lacuna is variously in-
dicated by rII(k'ung-wei 9FM, also po-k'uang b/I1), and O or E
(mo-ting Mf/T, mo-teng MX, teng-tzu T-, also hei-k'uang 9/I).
The sign is used to show that some character was missing from the
original document or that the copyist or editor was uncertain about
correct reading (because the character was illegible or obviously
wrong) and has therefore omitted the character.

6.1.1. The sign LI may be confused with the character n

("mouth"). Thus, LI1I ("? gives rise to shame") is transcribed as
QItr ("the mouth gives rise to shame") in Ta Tai Li-chi';k
"Wu-wang chien tso" AT_M5E?,&LAH: A&R, QnLC, nSn.
(CYC, p. 8, no. 6A).
6.1.2. The sign LI may be added where no character has been
lost, due to misunderstanding and faulty punctuation of the pas-
sage. The failure to recognize that 1NIJ ("that which lacks a regular
principle") is an integral phrase, parallel with I ("those who lack
usefulness, merit"), results in I Choushu 'Wu ching" ' WR: 0*1,7
PIMVEW2 UT_TN. (CKC, p. 8, no. 6B).
6.2. Errorsinvolvingsignsfor an immediaterepetitionor reprise.These
may be grouped by shape in the following series: (1) =, , ' (er-hua
; also tieh-hua , hsiao-erh'Yzi), (liang-tien ) These forms
are written small under the character to be repeated, flush with the
right edge, i.e., L. In use since pre-Han times; (2) ,' 7, '2, C, z.;
(3) 7, ); (4) < . These forms also are seen on Tun-huang texts; (5)
a small K. Also used in the Yuan. Ditto signs may be misinterpret-
ed as characters in the text (6.2.2); or they may cause the wrong
characters to be repeated, or, like other collation signs, they may be
overlooked, so that characters are lost (6.2.3).
6.2.2. The sign may be misinterpreted as a character in the
text. The signs = etc. may be readas the character-= ("two"). Thus f,6
.?=V-+ ("Ch'ien-yiian, first year, spring") yields the variant line ii-_E
("Ch'ien-yuian, second year, spring"), cited in the commentary to Chi ch'ien-chia
chu ftn-lei Tu Kung-pu shih i (1312; Yuan reprint), "Sung Li
Chiao-shu erh-shih-liu-yiin" A 2.10b (WLC, p. 127, no. 33). Also,
X A ("every person") produces -iA" ("every two people") in Yuian
"Hu" 5.14b: IIAXMll=II (CY1, p. 33). The signs 7? etc. may be read as the character ? (connects modifier to
word modified). Thus, 5FPP5, written as 3M 7 ("household registry for couri-
ers")>MP5? ("records of couriers") in Yuiantien-chang, "Hu" 3.5b (CY1, p.
34). Also, A(A(written as> A( J in P. 2621, Hsiao-tzuching -TM! (describing a bub-
bling spring:) *MTEA [.] J P4f{L1DDLFI. [.] V4t ("It tasted like River
water. In the water, there was also [?some type of] fish, which [she now] could get
to eat quite often")> E;A(?4kA@. )FI1DDi1M, W -. ("It tasted like the mid-
dle of the River. In addition, there was. . . ."], in the Tun-huangpien-wen chi tran-
scription, p. 902. (KTI, p. 335, no. 38). Other misinterpretations of signs as characters. X may be read as the
character X- ("again"). Thus, --("one by one") written as -S>-X- ("once
again"), in Yuantien-chang,"Li" t 5: 7Z3tj1 - (CYI, p. 34).
Also, t may be read as the characterkA,a simplified form for A; thus N ("a hun-
dred places") arises as a variant for ElEl ("day after day") in Sung-penTu Kung-pu
chi 15.22b, "Ch'iu-hsing pa-shou" (no. 3): ElEl (-f bf) :i?EWIW. The proba-
ble evolution was ElEl> Elt > ElH > kL (on the change El-+ see 1. 1). (WLC,
p. 127, no. 33). Also, 7 may be read as the character 7t ("finish, in the end");
thus k (7is a popular variant for ) written as * 7 in S.6551, Fo shuoA-mi-t'o
ching chiang-chingwen r=1iE0tt 0kt[]J* , JI
[?]>rtl~RS [t], 7*L1i, ; [zz;;] 1f_J#?, in Tun-huangpien-wen chi,p. 473
(on , see 1.1.7; on z see 1.1.6). (KTI, pp. 334-35, no. 37).
6.2.3. The use of the signs = etc. may result in the wrong
characters being repeated, because the sign is neglected or because
the type of repetition indicated is misunderstood. Thus, in Mao Shih
no. 113, "Shih-shu" MSl: A k#I, AiO-1+, *::, f tfiY,
the phrase *? ("happy land") in line 2 is repeated twice (one too
many times) in line 3. Line 2 was probably transcribed earlier as A
=- =*=j=, to indicate a reprise line (tieh-chii '&4ii) in line 3,
preserved in the citation of this poem in Han-shih wai-chuan 2: AII#I
;t, siFtj:, jiSA-, fMa. (CYC, p. 7-8, no. H5). Also, the
repetition indicated in S.3872, Wei-mo-chiehching chiang-chingwen: Ai
f e rP4E*,
[fe] viz. R [Xft ft?] ("Protector of
the World, Protector of the World")' is transcribed as X21 (?) in
Tun-huangpien-wen chi, p. 477 (KTI, pp. 336-37, no. 43).
6.3. Errorsinvolving othercollationsigns. These include signs for a
deletion: I- (pu-sha Fc), , , , (liang-tien PIA, san-tien ,XM
etc.); M written small and to the right of a redundant character that
should be deleted or an erroneous character that should replaced
(6.3.1). Also, the sign for a transposition: v (an L-shaped sign);
written small and to the right of a character that should be trans-
posed, usually the one that should be moved from the second posi-
tion to the first position in a two-character sequence; or sometimes
to the right, between the two characters; or rarely, to the right of the
character to be moved to the second position (6.3.2).
6.3.1. 1- may be misinterpreted as an annotation supplying the
replacement character F ("to divine"). Thuis FJft("conduct divina-
tion to locate an auspicious site") appears in the Tu Fu couplet, @t
S F*_P /M EnW("Ch'iu-jih chi t'i Cheng-chien hu-shang t'ing
san-shou" &FlVMOK- no. 2), in Chiu-chia chi-chu Tu shih

A*V8HJ4I?-, ed. Kuo Chih-ta NU; (1181; Kuang-tung, 1225),

29.43a, and One Thousand Commentatorseditions, where Sung-pen Tu
Kung-pu chi 15.13a correctly has ft!("take a turn about the land").
(WLC, p. 127, no. 34).
6.3.2. The transposition indicated by v may be misinter-
preted, Thus the small check-mark to the right of fAc0 (between
them, but closer to fA) in S.3872, Wei-mo-chiehching chiang-chingwen:
VIf , -AW I R, shows that fX should be corrected to
.fA (yielding the line, "Dancing butterflies and flying bees rest
from hunting and searching"), but instead, AfAcis inverted as WA
in Tun-huangpien-wen chi, p. 580 (yielding "Dancing butterflies rest
from flying, bees hunt and search"). (KTI, p. 327, no. 29).
6.4. Errorsinvolvingfaultypunctuationof readingphrases (chii-tou 'i
=). Errors in parsing texts (traditionally, unpunctuated) may
prompt substitutions (6.4.1), excisions (6.4.2), interpolations
(6.4.3), or transpositions (6.4.4) to improve intelligibility.
6.4. 1. Substitutions. Han shu M 8, "Hsuian-ti chi" `M;C: ?
AXASfliE8At=StlittS, traditionally parsed: ?It+WSU.
AATRAX. Reparsed by Wang Hsien-ch'ien iEdES (1842-1918)
as: , l with e (phrase-final particle)
changed to E (third person pronoun, "they themselves"). The
sense changes from "[The officials] submit their account rosters, all
filled in, but that is all [i.e., the receipts are not verified], while they
concern themselves with cheating to avoid their duties," to "[The
officials] submit their account rosters, all filled in. Yet they concern
themselves with cheating to avoid their duties" (YST, p. 89, no.
6.4.2. Excisions. Shih-chi 75, "Meng-ch'ang chiun chuan" i&
W: (From a speech by Feng Huan AM to the King of Ch'in, com-
paring the respective strengths of the rival states of Ch'i and Ch'in)
R - V j $ R traditionally parsed: i
Th. b+i<AX. XXi1vM. Reparsed by Wang Hsien-ch'ien as
>1+N?L.AXXiT, with the second X deleted. The sense changes
from: "(These kingdoms form a male-female pair); the dynamics of
the situation will not permit both to be established as the male, but
the one who is the male [or, the one who is more male-like] will ob-
tain the whole world" to: "The dynamics of the situation will not
permit both to be established. The one who acts as the male will ob-
tain the whole world." (YST, p. 93, no. 131).
6.4.3. Interpolations. Han shu 78, "Hsiao Wang-chih chuan"
jAtZ?: (From a memorial by Chang Ch'ang W1k on the hardships
caused by military conscriptions earlier that year for a campaign
against the Hsi-ch'iang A barbarians) 1f1#AwV1JRMUL%1
St1ffitR#e"ZEE $:ffi1#, traditionally parsed: V UAR. 0
_1JL9, 92L1f, tP*ONAM. EH*M40. Reparsed by Wang Hsien-
ch'ien as: JI-r;EPQf3.
00 00 0 00
ROJL11L, %0t1f, tJ<;
, with
additions of Y (Ch'ung, a personal name) and N ("pass through [a
period of time]"), and J1 ("in," when used to introduce time
phrases) as meaning e ("already"). The sense changesfrom: "The
imperial army is outside the border. The troops were raised in sum-
mer. From Lung-hsi northward, and An-ting westward, the people
have been put in service and asked to supply transport. Farm work
has been much disrupted" to: "[General Chao A] Ch'ung-kuo's
army has already spent the summer stationed with the border
troops. His army was raised from Lung-hsi northward and An-ting
westward. The people have been put in service. .." (YST, pp.
98-99, no. 137).
6.4.4. Transpositions. Han Fei Tzu "Shuo-lin, shang" $ThL:
1MAMMtfi traditional-
ly parsed: __NEU)iA-. -b
iRZA H. El XX, Jt
it. Reparsed by Wang Hsien-ch'ien as: -AJ fI?S, iA,
with * ("house") and ?t (3d person pronoun, "it") inverted. The
sense changesfrom: "(They looked in all four directions. On three
sides, the prospect was open.) But when they looked south, the trees
by Hsien-tzu's house closed off the view" to: "They looked south
toward Hsien-tzu's house, but the trees hid it. (YST p. 103, no.