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Shijinlu 使金錄

May 24, 2019 © Ulrich Theobald

Shijinlu 使金錄 is a report of a diplomatic travel by courtiers of the Southern Song 南宋 (1127-1279) to the court of the Jin dynasty 金 (1115-1234) in the north. The short book was written by Cheng Zhuo 程卓 (jinshi degree 1184), courtesy name Congyuan 從元, from Xiuning 休寧. He was 同知樞密院事 and later given the title of Commandery Marquis of Xin'an 新安郡侯 granted the honorific title of Grand Academician in the Hall for Aid in Governance (Zizhengidan daxueshi 資政殿大學士). His posthumous title is Marquis Zhenghui 正惠侯.

In 1211, Cheng Zhuo and Zhao Shiyan 趙師岩 were sent to the Jin capital to deliver new year's wishes to the emperor of the Jin, Wanyan Yongji 完顏永濟 (r. 1208-1213). The journey lasted four months. Cheng's report is a diary of the journey, the places the travellers saw and visited, mostly touristic spots. Unfortunately the individual descriptions are only very brief and cannot serve as reliable sources. Some of the statements recorded even go back to tales, and not to historical facts. On the other hand, Cheng revealed that he did not speak a single word with Li Xidao 李希道 during the whole journey. Moreover, the diplomat was not at all interested in the situation in the Jin state, and provides no information over his host.

The book is included in the series Zhongguo yeshi jicheng 中國野史集成.

Sources:
Hu Chuanzhi 胡傳志 (2018). "Bieyang de chaoxi: Nansong Cheng Zhuo Shijinlu chaolu Fan Chengda shi Jin shi zizhu fafu 别樣的抄襲—南宋程卓《使金錄》抄錄范成大使金詩自注發覆", Suzhou Keji Daxue xuebao (Shehui kexue ban) 蘇州科技大學學報(社會科學版), 2018 (7).
Siku quanshu zongmu tiyao 四庫全書總目提要, 52.
Zhao Yongchun 趙永春, Zhu He 祝賀 (2019). "Cheng Zhuo Shijinlu kaolun 程卓《使金錄》考論", Shixue jikan 史學集刊, 2019 (11).