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0389 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 389 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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161. CIORCIA   373

The Ta-Chin kuo chih and Ma Tuan-lin's Wên-hsien t'ung-k'ao are, as far as I am aware, the only sources where the form Lü-chên occurs as a name of the Nü-chên. But, to pass a judgement on the value of these two texts, two other works of earlier date must be adduced.

One is the    w   San-ch'ao pei-mêng hui pien, the author of which, 1

Hsü Mêng-hsin, lived from 1124 to 1205 (cf. CHAVANNES, in JA, 1897, i, 387-388); it is an invaluable repository of texts and documents ranging from 1117 to 1161. In his commentary on the arrival of the Nü-chên envoys at the Sung Court on February 22, 1119, Hsü Mêng-hsin says (3, 1 a-b; almost the whole of the text which I translate was copied verbatim by Hsü Mêng-hsin from Hung Hao's slightly earlier Sung-mo chi-wên; I prefer to translate from Hsü Mêng-hsin because the passage on the name Chü-li-chên does not occur in Hung Hao's account) : « The Nü-chên are the ancient kingdom of Su-shên. Their original name was 3 0 .- Chu-li-chên, [but] the foreign name (fan-yü) became Nil-el-18n through corruption. They were originally the

descendants of   Chu-mêng of Kao-li (Corea). Some make them [belong] to the race
(chung) of the Mo-ho of the Black River, as (?) a special branch (pieh tsu) of the P'o-hai, [or to ? (the text seems to be corrupt)] the Ch'ên Han of the San Han (« Three Han »). In truth, all [of these] were small kingdoms of the eastern Barbarians. For generations, [the Nü-chên] lived east of the Hun-t'ung-chiang, [at] the Ch'ang-pai-shan, [where] the Ya-lu-shui takes its rise ... To the east, they reached the sea; to the south, they bordered on Kao-li; to the west, they adjoined P'o-hai and T'ieh-li; to the north, they came near the Shih-wei. What the Sankuo chih calls I-lou, what the Wei of the Yüan [family] called Wu-chi, what the Sui called Hei-shui-pu (' Tribe of the Black River '), and what the T'ang called Hei-shui Mo-ho is their territory... When, in [the period] chêng-kuan of the T'ang, the Emperor T'ai-tsung led an expedition against Kao-li (Corea), ... more than 100,000 Mo-ho troops made their submission... In [the period] k'ai-yüan, their leader (i. e. of the Mo-ho) came [to render homage] to the Court, and he was appointed prefect (tz'ü-ship) of the department (chou) of Po-li. Subsequently, a department (fu) of Hei-shui was established, and the leaders of the clan were made its governors (tu-tu) and prefects (tz'ü-ship)... At the time of the Five Dynasties, [these tribes] were for the first time called Nü-chên ... ».

Though of uncertain date and authorship, another work dealing with the Nü-chên must certainly be earlier than the Ta-Chin kuo chih and the Wên-hsien t'ung-k'ao; it goes under the

title of   41, A f I-i mou Hsia lu, «Accounts of the plots of the Barbarians against

China », and is usually given as the work of   11„; max, Liu Chung-shu. Certainly because of

the manner in which the book speaks of the Nü-chên, which the Ch'ien-lung Commissioners felt to be offensive, the I-i mou Hsia lu is not mentioned in the Ssic-k'u..., though the Man-chou yuan-liu k'ao (dated 1777; 1, 3 a) quotes from « the Sung author Liu Chung-shu » the form « Chu-li-chên » of the name of the Nü-chên. I know of no modern edition of the I-i mou Hsia lu, and have never had a ms. copy of it at my disposal. Nothing seems to be known of its alleged author Liu Chung-shu. The text, as now extant, is in one chapter (Pi-Sung-lou ts'ang-shu chih, 28, 21-23), or in three (Shan pên-shu-shih ts'ang-shu chili, 10, 10 a-b), and

begins with a preface by tjj   Hu Ch'ien, probably a Sung man, about whom I know nothing.
On the other hand, the Chih-chai shu-lu chieh-t'i, in which no work later than c. 1235 is listed,