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Chinese Literature
Youhuan jiwen 游宦紀聞 "Memories of my Travel in Search of an Office"


is a biji 筆記 "brush notes" style book written by the Southern Song period scholar Zhang Shinan 張世南, courtesy name Zhang Guangshu 張光叔, courtesy name Zhang Guangshu張光叔. He came from Fanyang鄱陽 (modern Boyang 波陽, Jiangxi) and lived during the reigns of the emperors Ningzong 宋甯宗 (1195-1224) and Lizong 宋理宗 (1225-1264). He first followed his father to a post in Sichuan but later returned to the east, where he traveled through Zhejiang and Fujian. After 1228 he settled down and began to write down his experiences. His 10 juan scrolls long book includes 108 short chapters that discuss a vast amount of themes, ranging from stories of history to customs and habits, stories of personal affection, antiques and collectibles, literature, lexicography and etymology, archeology, calendar, mathematics, medicine, or the art of the garden. On his travels Zhang Shinan had spent a lot of time with the scholars Liu Guo 劉過, Gao Jiuwan 高九萬, Zhao Fan 趙蕃 and Han Hu 韓淲, but he mainly talks about his travel homewards. The reason his that his older brother was the son-in-law of Dong Wei 董煟 who accompanied him on the way back home. The stories narrate in the Youhuan jiwen are very reliable because they reflect a person experience. Many of them give interesting insights into the social life of southern China, and about the life and hobbies of the literati. The compilers of the imperial collectaneum Siku quanshu四庫全書praised Zhang Shinan’s book as one of the best biji texts of the Southern Song. There are several transmitted versions of the Youhuan jiwen. The collectanea Baihai 稗海, Siku quanshu, Zhibuzuzhai congshu 知不足齋叢書, Biji xiaoshuo daguan 筆記小說大觀, Baojinglou congkan 抱經樓叢刊 and Congshu jicheng chubian 叢書集成初編 include a 10 juan long version, the Shuofu 說郛 (Wanwei shantang edition), Wuchao xiaoshuo 五朝小說, Wuchao xiaoshuo daguan 五朝小說大觀 a short extract of 1 juan, the Shangwu yinshuguan edition of the Shuofu a non-sized extract, and the collectaneum Jiuxiaoshuo 舊小說 only six paragaphs. In 1981 the Zhonghua shuju press 中華書局 published a critical modern edition with annotations, by Zhang Maopeng 張茂鵬, in a joint edition with the book Jiuwen zhengwu 舊聞證誤 as part oft he collection Tang-Song shiliao biji congkan 唐宋史料筆記叢刊.

Source: Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰 (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典, Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe, vol. 2, p. 1955.
Chinese literature according to the four-category system

August 21, 2013 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail