An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Sushi yanyi 蘇氏演義

Jan 11, 2014 © Ulrich Theobald

Sushi yanyi 蘇氏演義 "Stories of Master Su" is an early "brush-notes"-style book (biji 筆記) compiled during the Tang period 唐 (618-907) by Su E 蘇鶚 (late 9th cent.), courtesy name Dexiang 德祥. He hailed from Wugong 武功 (modern Wugong, Shaanxi), and obtained his jinshi degree during the Guangqi reign-period 光啟 (885-887). He has also written the book Duyang zabian 杜陽雜編.

The original book had a length of 10 juan, but only 2 fascicles survive that consists of 150 fragments preserved in the Ming-period 明 (1368-1644) encyclopaedia Yongle dadian 永樂大典. The content of the stories is concerned with Confucian Classics, sayings, personalities and matters of the administrative system of Tang-period China. It describes a lot of implements, robes, speaks about court music and natural phenomena. Some of the fragments are surprisingly also to be found in Cui Bao's 崔豹 (c. 300) Gujinzhu 古今注 from the Jin period 晉 (265-420), and in Ma Hao's 馬縞 modernized version Zhonghua gujin zhu 中華古今注 from the Tang period. The bibliographer Chen Zhensun 陳振孫 (c. 1183-1262), author of the book catalogue Zhizhai shulu jieti 直齋書錄解題, says that it is a valuable text of equal status to Li Fu's 李涪 Kanwu 刊誤, Li Jiweng's 李濟翁 Zixiaji 資暇集 or Qiu Guangting's 邱光庭 Jianmingshu 兼明書.

The Sushi yanyi is to be found in the series Siku quanshu 四庫全書, Yihai zhuchen 藝海珠塵, Hanhai 函海, Rongyuan congshu 榕園叢書, Shuoku 說庫 and Congshu jicheng 叢書集成. It was published separately in 1956 by the Shangwu Yinshuguan 商務印書館 and in 1958 by the Zhonghua Shuju 中華書局.

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. 2, 1915.
Wu Feng 吳楓, ed. (1987). Jianming Zhongguo guji cidian 簡明中國古籍辭典 (Changchun: Jilin wenshi chubanshe), 390.
Wu Feng 吳楓, ed. (1994). Zhonghua gudian wenxian da cidian 中華古文獻大辭典, Vol. Wenxue 文學卷 (Changchun: Jilin wenshi chubanshe), 295.
Zeng Yunbo 鄭雲波, ed. (1992). Zhongguo gudian xiaoshuo cididan 中國古代小說辭典 (Nanjing: Nanjing daxue chubanshe), 48.
Zhang Haoxun 張浩遜 (2003). "Sushi yanyi 蘇氏演義", in Bian Xiaoxuan 卞孝萱, ed. Tangdai wenxue baike cidian 唐代文學百科辭典 (Beijing: Hanyu da cidian chubanshe), 621.