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(Banban Shanzhuang) Nongyan zhushi (半半山莊)農言著實

Feb 15, 2022 © Ulrich Theobald

Nongyan zhushi 農言著實, also called Banban Shanzhuang Nongyan zhushi 半半山莊農言著實, is a book on agriculture written by Yang Xiuyuan 楊秀元 (early 19th cent.) during the first half of the 19th century. Yang Xiuyuan, original name Hengxiao 恒孝, courtesy name Yichen 一臣, hailed from Sanyuan 三原, Shaanxi, and decided to become a farmer with the age of 40 sui. He would "half study, half cultivate", and thus called himself Banban Shanzhuang Zhuren 半半山莊主人.

Yang's text is written as an instruction to family members about important aspects of farming and is arranged according to the twelve lunar months, describing the concrete duties to be observed during each particular time. This "instruction to my sons" is called Banban Shanzhuang Zhuren shi er bei 半半山莊主人示兒輩. The second part of the book consists of various notes (Zaji shi tiao 雜記十條) on animal husbandry, manure, the use of land between fields for the cultivation of vegetables or hemp, etc. The book, written in the local tongue of Sanyuan of western Shaanxi, might thus belong to the genre of "family instructions" (jiaxun 家訓).

The book was first printed in 1856 by the author's son Yang Shiguo 楊士果. Is it included in the series Qinglitang congshu 清麓堂叢書 and was published in a modern edition in 1957 by the Zhonghua Shuju 中華書局 with the title Qin-Jin nongyan 秦晉農言.

Sources:
Di Yunti 翟允禔 (1957). "Cong Nongyan zhushi yi shu kann Guanzhong handi yuandi shang xiaomai, guzi, wandou, muxu deng zuowu de yi xue zaipei jishu 從《農言著實》一書看關中旱原地上小麥、穀子、豌豆、苜蓿等作物的一些栽培技術", Xibei Nongye Xueyuan xuebao 西北農業學院學報, 1957 (1): 57-71.
Li Fengqi 李風岐 (1980). "Guanyu Nongyan zhushi suo ji Guanzhong handi zhizhi zhidu ji qi chushui baoshang jingyan de tantao 關於《農言著實》所記關中旱地種植制度及其蓄水保墒經驗的探討", Shaanxi nongye kexue 陝西農業科學, 1980 (3): 13-16.
Liu Wu 劉吳 (1995). "Nongyan zhushi de nonghu jingying guanli sixiang 《農言著實》的農戶經營管理思想", Xibei Nongye Daxue xuebao 西北農業大學學報, 1995 (1). XXX
Wang Guozhong 王國忠 (1992). "Nongyan zhushi 農言著實", in Zhou Gucheng 周谷城, ed. Zhonggou xueshu mingzhu tiyao 中國學術名著提要, Vol. Keji 科技卷 (Shanghai: Fudan daxue chubanshe), 465.
Wang Yuhu 王毓瑚, ed. (1964). Zhongguo nongxue shulu 中國農學書錄 (Beijing: Nongye chubanshe), 267.
Zhang Yunzhong 張允中 (1984). "Du Nongyan zhushi bing bushi 讀《農言著實》并補釋", Zhongguo nongshi 中國農史, 1984 (3): 98-101.