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0081 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.2
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.2 / Page 81 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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omitted a last text, the importance of which as folklore can be determined only by first entering into

some details about its nature, date and authorship ; it is the one from the tit pi   Liang ssû
kung chi (the alternative title Liang ssû kung-[ - ]tzû chi has less authority), or « Account of the four gentlemen of the Liang [dynasty] » (not « princes » as in D'HERVEY DE SAINT-DENYS, Ethnographie, Orientaux, 392, and LAUFER, TP, 1915, 203, or « dukes » as in SCHLEGEL, TP, ni, 497, and LAUFER, TP, 1915, 338). There is no independant edition, nor has the work been preserved in its entirety, It has hitherto always been quoted second hand by D'HERVEY DE SAINT-DENYS, WYLIE, SCHLEGEL, DE GROOT, LAUFER and others, none of whom noticed that the only connected text was that preserved in ch. 81 of the T'ai-p'ing kuang-chi (end of the 10th cent.; it has been partly copied in ch. 113 of the later edition of the Shuo fu [c. 1360-1366], and, with one or two obvious corrections, in T'ushu chi-ch'êng, shên-i tien, 311, 3-6). But even in the T'ai-p'ing kuang-chi the text is not complete. Another encyclopaedia of the end of the 10th cent., the T'ai-p'ing yü-lan, cites a number of passages from the Liang ssû kung chi, most of which correspond, with occasional divergent readings, to the text in the T'ai-p'ing kuang-chi; such passages are found at 805, 8 b; 808, 5 b (incomplete; it is this incomplete quotation which has been used by LAUFER in TP, 1915, 201-202) ; 814, 4 a; 820, 9 b10 a (used at second hand, from the Ko-chih ching yuan, by LAUFER in TP, 1915, 338); 845, 5 b; 857, 3 b; 865, 6 a ; but the T'ai-p'ing kuang-chi lacks a long passage, certainly original, given in the T'ai-p' ing yü-lan, 803, 9 a-10 a, and I have noticed other omissions. Moreover, the T'ai-p' ing kuangchi mentions no name of author, whereas the complete text, as it was still extant in the first half of the 13th cent., had at the beginning a mention of authorship and at the end a lengthy colophon

(cf. -   -~-` At jig g Chih-chai shu-lu chieh-t'i, 7, 4).

The Liang ssû kung chi is given in the Shuo fu as the work of ix a Chang Yüeh (667-730),

and this ascription is expressly supported at an earlier date by a passage of the p    Hu fa lun,
a Buddhist work written c. 1170 (, VIII, 92; NANJIO, Catalogue, No. 1502). I accepted this in BEFEO, iv, 283), and so did DE GROOT (Relig. system of China, iv, 260-261) and LAUFER (The Diamond, 7). Chang Yüeh is a well-known statesman and writer (but not a painter, in spite of GILES, Biogr. Dict., No. 134, DE GROOT, and LAUFER; his name does not occur in the long catalogue of painters of the T'ang dynasty in the Li-tai ming-hua chi) ; but in his collected works there is no mention of the Liang ssû kung chi, and it is very doubtful whether he was the author. In the Hsin T'ang shu (58, 8 b; the indication of the Chiu T'ang shu by DE GROOT is a slip), the work is given

as written by   Lu Shên, with a note to the effect that others mention gt. .42Â Liang Tsai-
yen as the author, and Liang Tsai-yen alone is named as the author in the Sung shih (203, 7 b). About

the year 1235, jj 4   Ch'ên Chên-sun, who still possessed the complete text, in one chapter, says
(Chih-chai shu-lu chieh-t'i, 7, 4) that the work bears the name of Chang Yüeh as the author, but that

the i   t   Kuan-ko shu-mu (a Sung official catalogue) ascribes it to Liang Tsai-yen and the
Hsin T'ang shu to Lu Shên or Liang Tsai-yen. Ch'ên Chên-sun adds that, according to the Han-tan shu-mu (another Sung catalogue), Liang Tsai-yen had obtained (T. te) the Liang ssû kung chi

from j1 ;irj T'ien T'ung of n   Lin-tzû (in Shan-tung), though some copies gave as author either
Chang Yüeh or Lu Shên. The ascription to Chang Yüeh at the beginning of the book cannot be explained, Ch'ên Chên-sun says, since the facts about T'ien T'ung are expressly mentioned at the end. Unfortunately, this colophon is no more extant, and it is not easy to see how it would confirm