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Chinese Literature
Bieya 別雅 "The Correct [Dictionary] of Synonyms"


The Bieya 別雅 "Correct [dictionary] of synonyms" is a glossary dictionary compiled by the Qing period 清 (1644-1911) scholar Wu Yujin 吳玉搢 (1698-1773). The 5 juan "scrolls" long book imitates the structure of the Classic dictionary Erya 爾雅 (the title can therefore also translated as "The Erya of synonyms"). The Bieya specializes on disyllabic words (shuangyin 雙音) and their synonyms and alternative writings, like congsong 從頌 for congrong 從容 or fuyu 扶於, fushu 扶疏, fusu 扶蘇, fuxu 扶胥 for fushu 扶疎. The thesaurus of the Bieya is very rich and demonstrates that in everyday writing it was by no means sure which characters were standard and which not. Wu Yujin made use of earlier collections, like Jiao Hong's 焦竑 Sushu kanwu 俗書刊誤, Zhou Boqi's 周伯琦 Liushu zheng'e 六書正訛, and Fang Yizhi's 方以智 Tongya 通雅. The Bieya itself was a model for Zhu Qifeng's 朱起鳳 modern dictionary Citong 辭通.
There is a print from 1742 by Master Cheng's 程氏 Dujing Studio 讀經堂 which was reprinted during the Daoguang reign 道光 (1821-1850). There is an edition by Xu Han 許瀚 called Bieya ding 別雅訂 included in the collectaneum Pangxizhai congshu 滂喜齋叢書. The Bieya is included in the Siku quanshu 四庫全書.


Source: Zhou Zumo 周祖謨 (1988). "Bieya 別雅", in: Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Yuyan wenzi 語言文字, pp. 21-22. Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe.

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February 27, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail