The Spring and Autumn Annals of Lv Buwei

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The Lüshi Chunqiu is an encyclopedic Chinese classic text compiled around 239 BCE under the patronage of the Qin Dynasty Chancellor Lü Buwei. In the evaluation of Michael Carson and Michael Loewe, The Lü shih ch'un ch'iu is unique among early works in that it is well organized and comprehensive, containing extensive passages on such subjects as music and agriculture, which are unknown elsewhere. It is also one of the longest of the early texts, extending to something over 100,000 characters. To the usual description of its language as 'homogeneous' there must be added the qualifications that there is considerable borrowing from other texts with differing grammatical characteristics, and the fact that in different parts of the book there are different patterns of word usage. (1993:324)Contents:The title uses chunqiu meaning "annals; chronicle" in a classical reference to the Confucianist Chunqiu "Spring and Autumn Annals", which chronicles the State of Lu history from 772-481 BCE.The Lüshi Chunqiu text comprises 26 juan in 160 pian , and is divided into three major parts; the Ji. books1-12 correspond to the months of the year, and list appropriate seasonal activities to ensure that the state runs smoothly. This part, which was copied as the Liji chapter Yueling, takes many passages from other texts, often without attribution, the Lan . Books 13-20 each have 8 sections corresponding to the 64 Hexagrams in the Yijing. This is the longest and most eclectic part, giving quotations from many early texts, some no longer extant, and the Lun . Books 21-26 mostly deal with rulership, excepting the final four sections about agriculture. This part resembles the Lan in composition.Major positionsAdmitting the difficulties of summarizing the Lüshi Chunqiu, John Knoblock and Jeffrey Riegel list 18 major points.
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The Spring and Autumn Annals of Lv Buwei