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0386 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 386 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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370   161. CIORCIA

them nor to recent authors like CHANG Yü in his Ch'ien Tsun-wang Tu-shu min-ch'iu chi chiaochêng (II A, 15-16) did it occur that a man who had already published a work in 1180 cannot well have passed his doctorate in 1247, that is to say 67 years later. That a Yeh Lung-ii, native of

Chia-hsing in Chê-chiang, received the doctorate in the seventh year of   j ch'un-yu (1247) is
not open to doubt, since he is mentioned among the Chia-hsing men of that promotion in the Chê-chiang t'ung-chih and in the Chia-hsing fu chih (44, 42 b) ; but I find no other information

about him. A possible solution would be that the date of the memorial to the Throne, « the seventh year ch'un-hsi» (1180), is corrupt for « the seventh year ch'un-yu» (1247), the very year in which the Chia-hsing man Yeh Lung-li became a doctor. The « seventh year ch'un-hsi », however, is the date already given in the surviving copy of the edition engraved in the Yüan period (cf. T'ieh-ch'in-t'ung-chien-lou ts'ang-shu mu-lu, 9, 23 b, 29 a; Pi-Sung-lou ts'ang-shu chih, 23, 14 a). Moreover, internal evidence, some of which has already been adduced by the Ch'ien-lung Commissioners, seems to prove that the book was not written by Imperial order, nor presented to the Throne. If the memorial be apocryphal, Yeh Lung-li's authorship may well be questioned. As a matter of fact, we must take the Ch'i-tan kuo chih as a spurious compilation of uncertain authorship and date, written perhaps at the end of the Sung dynasty, but perhaps also only in the Yüan dynasty. Already in the fourteenth century some of its blunders were denounced by Su T'ien-chio (1294-1352) in a dissertation which is quoted in the Ssû-k'u..., 50, 20 a (it is probably to be found in Su T'ien-chio's literary collection entitled Tz'û-ch'i wen-kao, which is not at my disposal). Nevertheless, the supposed Yeh Lung-li had access to some works which have now perished, and some of the information he has preserved is not to be found elsewhere. The paragraphs of the Ch'i-tan kuo chili relating to the origin and the customs of the Ch'i-tan were extracted from the complete work by T'ao Tsung-i who reprinted them as the work of Yeh Lung-ii, under the title of Liao chih, « Notice of the Liao », at the beginning of the 86th chapter of his ta 411; Shuo fu of c. 1360-1366. From the Shuo fu they were copied under the Ming dynasty into the Ku-chin shuo-hai, and have been translated both by VASIL'EV (Trudy VOIRAO, iv, 171-196) and by R. STEIN (TP, 1939, 1-154).

The case of the Ta-Chin kuo chih is exactly parallel with that of the Ch'i-tan kuo chih. It

is headed by a memorial of presentation to the Sung Emperor dated on the 15 th of the first month of the first year tuanp'ing (February 14, 1234), but it tells of the fall of the Chin dynasty which occurred at K'ai-fêng on February 9, 1234. How could an event which took place in Ho-nan have been mentioned in a book presented to the Sung Emperor at Hang-chou in Chê-chiang five days later ? Moreover, while Chinghiz-khan is spoken of as « the leader of the Ta-ta (Tarters)Tämü-

1in» (22, 2 b), which is what would be expected from a subject of the Sung dynasty, the author speaks

elsewhere of the Mongol reigning family as « the Great dynasty », of the Mongol troops as « the Great army », and of Mongol envoys as « Celestial messengers ». These contradictions, and some others, have been denounced by the Ch'ien-lung Commissioners (Ssû-k'u ... , 50, 22-23) and by CH'IEN Ta-hsin (1728-1804; in a notice on the Ta-Chin kuo chih which is found in ch. 28 of his Ch'ien-yen-t'ang wên chi). The Ch'ien-lung Commissioners were of opinion that the Ta-Chin

kuo chih had been written by Yü-wên Mou-chao under the Sung, but that it had been tampered with at the beginning of the Yüan dynasty. CH'IEN Ta-hsin, more clearsighted, maintained that