An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Kunwai chunqiu 閫外春秋

Mar 20, 2013 © Ulrich Theobald

Kunwai chunqiu 閫外春秋 "Spring and Autumn beyond the threshold" is a collection of biographies of generals through history written by the Tang-period 唐 (618-907) writer Li Quan 李筌 xxx. The bibliographical catalogue Zhizhai shulu jieti 直齋書錄解題 from the Song period 宋 (960-1279) says that the book begins with the conquest of the Shang kingdom 商 (17th-11th cent. BCE) by King Wu of Zhou 周武王, yet this part is missing in the received version.

A fragment of a Tang-period manuscript has been discovered in Dunhuang 敦煌 (juan 1 and the first half of juan 2, as well as juan 4 and 5). A facsimile has been published in the book Mingsha shiku yishu 鳴沙石室佚書. Among the Dunhuang fragments is also Li Quan's memorial in which he declared his presentation of the book to the throne. Li Quan saw his book as a kind of supplement to the Confucian Classic Chunqiu 春秋 "Spring and Autumn Annals". The original size of the book was 10 juan, of which the last five are lost.

Zhang Xihou 張錫厚 (2003). Kunwai chunqiu 閫外春秋, in: Bian Xiaoxuan 卞孝萱 (ed.), Tangdai wenxue baike cidian 唐代文學百科辭典, p. 628. Beijing: Hanyu da cidian chubanshe.