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Chinese Literature
Jutanlu 劇談錄 "Free Talks"


The Jutanlu 劇談錄 "Free talks" is a collection of stories compiled by the Tang period 唐 (618-907) writer Kang Pian 康駢, who is also known under the name of Kang Ping 康軿. His courtesy name was Kang Jiayan 康駕言 and he came from Chiyang 池陽 (modern Guichi 貴池, Anhui). His highest office was that of editor (jiaoshulang 校書郎) in the Institute for the Veneration of Literature (Chongwenguan 崇文館). The 2 juan "scrolls" long Jutanlu was finished in 895 and includes 42 stories about strange events, ghosts and spirits as well as the extraordinary skills of wandering knights, mainly dating from the mid- and late Tang period. The stories are of a lively character, but not very outstanding in a literary sense. Quite famous are the stories Tian Zhanglang 田膨郎, describing the theft of palace interior by a wandering knight, the story Yuan Zi 袁滋 which describes the revision of an unjust judgment, or the story of "General Pan" 潘將軍, a brave female gallant hero. The catalogue Junzhai dushu zhi 郡齋讀書錄 and the imperial bibliogray in the official dynastic history Xintangshu 新唐書 say that it was 3 juan long.
The Jutanlu is included in the collectanea Siku quanshu 四庫全書, Jindai mishu 津逮秘書, Jigutang congkan 稽古堂叢刊, Xuejin taoyuan 學津討源, Xiaoyuan congshu 嘯園叢書 and Guichi xianzhe yishu 貴池先哲遺書. In 1958 the Gudian wenxue press 古典文學出版社published Liu Shiheng's 劉世珩 Guichi Tangren ji 貴池唐人集 "Collected writings of persons form Guichi of the Tang period", which also includes the Jutanlu.


Sources:
Shi Zhicun 施蟄存 (1992). "Jutanlu 劇談錄", in: Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Zhongguo wenxue 中國文學, vol. 1, p. 344. Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe.
Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰 (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典, vol. 2, p. 2173. Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe.


Chinese literature according to the four-category system

October 3, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail