An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Er Cheng wenji 二程文集

Apr 9, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald

Er Cheng wenji 二程文集 "Collected writings of the brothers Cheng" is a complete collection of the non-philosophical writings of the brothers Cheng Hao 程顥 (1032-1085) and Cheng Yi 程頤 (1033-1107) who were both famous Neo-Confucian philosophers from the Northern Song period 北宋 (960-1126).

The collection has a length of 13 juan and is enriched by an appendix of 2 juan. The Song-period catalogue Zhizhai shulu jieti 直齋書錄解題 mentions the book Mingdaoji 明道集 (collected writings of Cheng Hao) with a length of 4 juan, Yiwen 遺文 (remainders) with a length of 1 juan, and Yichuanji 伊川集 (collected writings of Cheng Yi) in one version of 20 juan and another one with a length of 9 juan, as well as a 12-juan-long book called Henan Chengshi wenji 河南程氏文集, which apparently included writings of both scholars.

The transmitted collection is different from these older books and is based on a version once owned by Hu Anguo 胡安國 (1074-1138) that had been printed in Changsha 長沙, Hunan, by the philosophers Liu Gong 劉珙 (1122-1178) and Zhang Shi 張栻 (1133-1180). In this version of the collection, the chapters or books Dingxingshu 定性書, Mingdao xingshu 明道行述 and Shangfugong xieshuai shu 上富公謝帥書 were partially left out, and the order of the writings Ciguanbiao 辭官表 and Yizhuan xu 易傳序 were turned around. There was a critical discussion between the eminent philosopher Zhu Xi 朱熹 (1130-1200) and the editors Liu and Zhang about the edition of the collected works of the Cheng brothers. This dispute is described in the book Hui'an ji 晦庵集, the collected writings of Zhu Xi.

The Ercheng wenji is included in the imperial series Siku quanshu 四庫全書, where it consists of two parts, namely Mingdao wenji 明道文集, and Yichuan wenji 伊川文集.

Table 1. Contents of the Er Cheng wenji 二程文集
明道文集 Mingdao wenji
1 銘詩 Inscriptions and poems
2 奏疏表 Memorials to the throne
3 Letters
4 墓誌銘 Tomb inscriptions
5 雜文 Miscellaneous texts
伊川文集 Yichuan wenji
6 奏疏 Memorials to the throne
7 表疏 Letters of communication
8 學制 Writings on the educational system
9 雜著 Miscellaneous writings
10 書啓 Letters
11 婚禮 Texts on nuptials etc.
12 行狀 Descriptions of conduct
墓誌 Tomb inscriptions
祭文 Sacrificial texts
13 墓誌 Tomb inscriptions
家傳 Family chronicles
祭文 Sacrificial texts
附録 二卷 appendix, compiled by (Song) Hu Anguo 胡安國 and revised by (Yuan) Tan Shanxin 譚善心
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, 2414.