An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Liang-Han bowen 兩漢博聞

Feb 20, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald

Liang-Han bowen 兩漢博聞 "Broad hearsay of the two Han dynasties" is an historical excerpt about the Han period 漢 (206 BCE-220 CE), i. e. the time of the Former 前漢 (206 BCE-8 CE) and the Later Han 後漢 (25-220) dynasties, written by the Northern Song period 北宋 (960-1126) scholar Yang Kan 楊侃 (jinshi degree 989).

In his 12-juan long book he presents excerpts from the two official dynastic histories Hanshu 漢書 and Houhanshu 後漢書. He selected important events from the originals, quoted the stories with the original text, and added the commentaries of Yan Shigu 顔師古 (581-645) and Prince Zhanghuai 章懷太子 (Li Xian 李賢, 654-684). These do not follow the order in the original books.

The Liang-Han bowen was first printed in 1172 by Hu Yuanzhi's 胡元質 Gushujunzhai Studio 姑孰郡齋. There is print by Hu Luceng 黃魯曾 (1487-1561) from 1558 which is now stored in the Beijing Library 北京圖書館. The Liang-Han bowen is included in the series Siku quanshu 四庫全書.

Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰, eds. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 1, 1042.