An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Huangchao suoxie lu 皇朝瑣屑錄

Oct 26, 2019 © Ulrich Theobald

Huangchao suoxie lu 皇朝瑣屑錄 "Petty records of Our August Dynasty" is a selection of various historiographical sources that was compiled by Zhong Qi 鐘琦 (b. 1817?), courtesy name Bonong 泊農. He also wrote the book Pinghuaguan suobi 憑花館瑣筆.

The book of 44 juan presents to the reader the most important chapters and paragraphs from various histories, capital gazettes (dichao 邸鈔), the alternative history Qing tongzhi 清通志 and the statecraft encyclopaedia Qing tongdian 清通典. It focuses on politics, economy, education, culture, military matters and geography.

The original draft was 80-juan long, but drastically shortened before the manuscript went into print. It was published in 1897, when Zhong Qi was already 80-years old and lacked the physical strength to revise the manuscript.

The book is divided into 24 parts with more than 1,900 small chapters, beginning with anecdotes and narratives, and then discussing the themes schools, state examinations, the army, military campaigns, loyalty (zhongyi 忠義), sincerity (gangzhi 剛直), land tax (zhengliang 征糧), mercantile taxes (queshui 榷稅), grain transport (caoyun 漕運), military agro-colonies (tuntian 屯田), river conservancy (hefang 河防), public engineering (gongshi 工式), salt policy (yanzheng 鹽政), tea tax (chake 茶課), monetary policy (qianfa 錢法), metallurgy (kuangwu 礦務), public granaries (cangchu 倉儲), disaster relief (zhenji 賑濟), state revenue (guoji 國計), state expenditure (chouxiang 籌餉), law (fali 法例), border defence (bianchui 邊陲), courier stations (yizhan 驛站), customs and habits (fengsu 風俗), omens and portents (xiangyi 祥異), local products (wuchan 物產), "barbarians" (waifan 外蕃), and foreign countries (yiyu 異域).

Nan Jiangtao 南江濤 (2011). "Zhong Qi ji qi liang bu suibi suotan: Yingyin Huangchao suoxiao lu, Pinghuaguan suobi qianyan 鍾琦及其兩部隨筆瑣談—影印《皇朝瑣屑錄》《憑花館瑣筆》前言", Bianji zhi you 編輯之友, 2011 (10).
Sichuan baike quanshu bianzuan weiyuanhui 《四川百科全書》編纂委員會, ed. (1997). Sichuan baike quanshu 四川百科全書 (Chengdu: Sichuan cishu chubanshe), 458.
Wu Feng 吳楓, ed. (1987). Jianming Zhongguo guji cidian 簡明中國古籍辭典 (Changchun: Jilin wenshi chubanshe), 643.