An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Sanshiguo chunqiu 三十國春秋

Oct 21, 2013 © Ulrich Theobald

Sanshiguo chunqiu 三十國春秋 "Spring and Autumn of the Thirty States and Dynasties" was a history of the Eastern Jin period 東晉 (317-420) compiled by Xiao Fangfeng 蕭方等 (528-549), courtesy name Xiao Shixiang 蕭實相, who was the oldest son of Emperor Yuan 梁元帝 (r. 552-554) of the Liang dynasty 梁 (502-557), but lost the favour of his father when the latter discarded his mother, Lady Xu 徐妃.

Xiao Fangfeng participated in the suppression of the rebellion of Hou Jing 侯景 and led the campaign against the rebellious prince Xiao Yu 蕭譽, during which he died. He had been known as an excellent rider and archer, and also as a fine painter and calligrapher.

According to the imperial bibliography Jingjizhi 經籍志 in the official dynastic history Suishu 隋書 the book was 31 juan long. The bibliography Junzhai dushu zhi 郡齋讀書附志 quotes Xiao Fangdeng's contemporarian Du Yanye 杜延業 who said that Xiao had collected a large amont of historiographical sources and compiled a history of the Jin dynasty and twenty-nine other polities existing during that time.

The few surviving parts of the book can be compared with statements in other histories. The fragments were collected by the late Qing-period 清 (1644-1911) scholar Tang Qiu 湯球 (1804-1881) in his series Shiliuguo chunqiu jiben 十六國春秋輯本. It includes eighteen fragments of histories of the Sixteen States 十六國 (300~430) that ruled over northern China during the Jin period, as well as some other texts about northern China during that period, like Liu Bing's 劉昞 Dunhuang shilu 燉煌實錄, Yu Gui's 喻歸 Xiheji 西河記, Wang Du's 王度 biography Er Shi zhuan 二石傳 (Shi Le 石勒 and Shi Hu 石虎, rulers of the Later Zhao empire 後趙, 319-351), as well as fragments from two texts called Sanshiguo chunqiu, namely that of Xiao Fangdeng, and another text of this title by Wu Minzhi 武敏之.

Which the thirty states or dynasties treated in the original text were, cannot be known. The collection was made to be a supplement to the surviving history Shiliuguo chunqiu 十六國春秋 that had been written by Cui Hong 崔鴻 (478-525). Tang Qiu's collection is to be found in the series Guangya shuju congshu 廣雅書局叢書.

The title Sanshiguo ji 三十國記 is an alternative name of the monk Faxian's 法顯 (337-422) travel report Foguoji 佛國記 that describes various countries that have to be crossed on the way to India.

三十國春秋輯本 Sanshiguo chunqiu jiben
(Qing) 湯球 Tang Qiu (comp.)
書名, length in juan Title Author(s)
三十國春秋 一卷 Sanshiguo chunqiu (Liang) 蕭方等 Xiao Fangdeng
三十國春秋 一卷 Sanshiguo chunqiu (Liu-Song) 武敏之 Wu Minzhi
蜀李書 一卷 Shu-Li shu (Jin) 常璩 Chang Qu
漢趙記 一卷 Han-Zhao ji (Former Zhao) 和苞 He Bao
趙書 一卷 Zhaoshu (Yan) 田融 Tian Rong
趙書 一卷 Zhaoshu () 吳篤 Wu Du
二石傳 一卷 Er Shi zhuan (Jin) 王度 Wang Du
燕書 一卷 Yanshu (Yan) 范亨 Fan Heng
秦書 一卷 Qinshu (Former Qin) 車頻 Ju Pin
南燕書 一卷 Nanyanshu (Yan) 王景暉 Wang Jinghui
秦記 Qinji (Liu-Song) 裴景仁 Pei Jingren
後秦記 一卷 Houqinji (Later Wei) 姚和都 Yao Hedu
涼記 一卷 Liangji (Yan) 張諮 Zhang Zi
西河記 一卷 Xiheji (Jin) 喻歸 Yu Gui
涼記 一卷 Liangji (Northern Liang) 段龜龍 Duan Guilong
燉煌實錄 一卷 Dunhuang shilu (Later Wei) 劉昞 Liu Bing
南燕書 一卷 Nanyanshu (Yan) 張詮 Zhang Quan
燕志 一卷 Yanzhi (Later Wei) 高閭 Gao Lü
Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰, ed. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 1, 1049.
Wei Junjie 魏俊傑 (2011). "Tang Qiu Shanshiguo chunqiu jiben buyi 湯球《三十國春秋輯本》補遺", Lantai shijie 蘭台世界, 2011-06.
Wei Junjie 魏俊傑 (2013). "Xiao Fangdeng Sanshiguo chuniu tanxi 蕭方等《三十國春秋》探析", Lantai shijie 蘭台世界, 2013 (2).