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Chinese Literature
Kuangmiu zhengsu 匡謬正俗 "Rectification of Errors and Corrections of the Unorthodox"


The Kuangmiu zhengsu 匡謬正俗 "Rectification of errors and corrections of the unorthodox" is a specialist handbook on writing errors compiled by the Tang period 唐 (618-907) scholar Yan Shigu 顏師古 (581-645). The book has acutally not been finished but was submitted to the throne in 651 by Yan's son Yan Yangting 顏揚庭, with a length of 8 juan "scrolls". The book survived as part of the library of the Imperial Archives (Mishuge 秘書閣). During the Song period 宋 (960-1279) it was called Kanmiu zhengsu 刊謬正俗, in order to avoid the personal name of the dynasty's founder, Zhao Kuangyin 趙匡胤 (Song Taizu 宋太祖, r. 960-975). In 182 paragraphs, Yan Shigu points at writing errors in the common versions of important classical writings. Although seldomly consulted today, the Kuangmiu zhengsu is one of the first books in which text critique was developed as an important tool for the study of ancient writings. The oldest surviving editions of the book in the collectanea Yayutang cangshu 雅雨堂藏書 and Shiliju congshu 士禮居叢書, are not very reliable and full of printing errors. A relatively good version has been published in 1814 by Zhang Shaoren 張紹仁 which is now kept in the Beijing Library 北京圖書館. The Kuangmiu zhengsu is also included in the Siku quanshu 四庫全書.

Source: Zhou Zumo 周祖謨 (1988). "Kuangmiu zhengsu 匡謬正俗", in: Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Yuyan wenzi 語言文字, p. 243. Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe.

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February 27, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail