An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Leishu zuanyao 類書纂要

May 21, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald

Leishu zuanyao 類書纂要 "Most important references from all encyclopaedias" is an encylopaedia compiled during the Qing period 清 (1644-1911) by Zhou Lu 周魯, courtesy name Nanlin 南林, from Wuxi 無鍚, Jiangsu.

The book was finished in 1664, has a length of 33 juan and includes 32 chapters. The quality of the book is not very high because the sources are not diligently indicated and the text contains many errors. The reason for this conditions is that the transmitted version was only a draft and not a finished manuscript. The Leishu zuanyao, nevertheless, cannot be overlooked because it contains categories not included in other, better and more famous, encyclopaedias, and quotes sources otherwise neglected, for example, in the chapters Sanjiao 三教 "The three teachings or religions" and Baigong 百工 "The hundred arts and crafts".

Table 1. Contents of the Leishu zuanyao 類書纂要
1. 天文類 Heaven and astronomy
2. 地理類 The Earth
3. 歲時類 Seasons and time
4. 地輿類 Administrative geography
5.-6. 統系類 Dynastic genealogies
7. 三教類 The tree religions
8. 年齒類 Human age
9. 人倫類 Human relations
10. 人道類 The human way
11. 雜藝類 Miscellaneous skills
12. 百工類 The hundred trades
13.-18. 姓譜 Families
19. 列女類 Outstanding females
20.-21. 人事類 Human affairs
22. 文史類 History and literature
23. 珍寶類 Jewellery
24. 布帛類 Cloth
衣服類 Clothing
25. 身體類 The human body
26. 飲食類 Drinking and diet
27. 花草類 Flowers and herbs
28. 樹木類 Trees
29. 果蔬類 Fruits and vegetables
30. 器用類 Vessels, tools and objects of daily use
31. 音樂類 Music
祭器類 Sacrificial tools
32. 宮室類 Palaces and buildings
33. 飛禽類 Flying birds
走獸類 Running beasts
鱗介類 Scaly creatures
昆蟲類 Creeping creatures
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, 2063.
Zhao Hankun 趙含坤, ed. (2005). Zhongguo leishu 中國類書 (Shijiazhuang: Hebei renmin chubanshe), 371.