An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Wuji tanbing 戊笈談兵

Jan 18, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald

Wuji tanbing 戊笈談兵 "Whole book of calculating victory at pacificiation" is an encyclopaedic treatise on military arts compiled during the Qing period 清 (1644-1911) by Wang Fu 汪紱 (1692-1759). It two parts are 10-juan long and contain 41 maps, 33 illustrations of the starry sky and the hexagrams, as well as 53 illustrations of battle arrays.

The book is arranged in the very traditional segmentation of Heaven and time, Earth and topography, and Humans and harmony. Astronomy, astrology, weather and geography are dealt with from the aspect of military, and cover all regions of China, with a focus on the Yellow River plain, Beijing, the lower Yangtze region, and Sichuan. The last section of the book is a compilation of quotations from classical writings on military like Simafa 司馬法, Wuzi 吳子 and Sunzi bingfa 孫子兵法, covering topics like battle formations, weapons, the spirit of troops, and so on. The various battle formations are described in detail, with a discussion of their advantages and disadvantages.

There is a print from 1894, included in the collected works of Wang Fu, the Wang Shuangchi xiansheng congshu 汪雙池先生叢書. The book has not been included in larger series and is therefore rarely available.

Chen Bingcai 陳秉才 (1989). "Wuji tanbing 戊笈談兵", in Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, part Junshi 軍事 (Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe), Vol. 2, 1085.
Bi Hailin 畢海林 (2015). "Yu ru tong bing: Wuji tanbing yu Qingdai qianqi Sunzi Bingfa yanjiu 以儒統兵:《戊笈談兵》與清代前期孫子兵學研究", Sunzi yanjiu 孫子研究, 2015 (4): 90-98.
Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文郁, ed. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 2, 1637.
Liu Qing 劉慶 (1996). "Wuji tanbing 戊笈談兵", in Feng Kezheng 馮克正, Fu Qingsheng 傅慶升, ed. Zhuzi baijia da cidian 諸子百家大辭典 (Shenyang: Liaoning renmin chubanshe), 420.