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13. Autumn Moon Shining on a Reed Pavilion
- Huangzhong mode:2 1 3 5 6 1 2 3
秋月照茅亭 1
Qiuyue Zhao Maoting
  Print by Fu Dongli 3
In Shen Qi Mi Pu (SQMP, 1425), Qiuyue Zhao Maoting, is combined with the Kaizhi (Opening Fingering, a type of prelude) that comes before it. However, although the Qiuyue Zhao Maoting melody survives in five handbooks through 1670, the Kaizhi does not appear elsewhere.4

This later omission of the Kaizhi perhaps was an oversight. On the other hand it may also serve to reinforce the idea that for Shen Qi Mi Pu Folio I melodies Zhu Quan was simply copying old tablature that no one played. Since no one was playing this music, later compilers didn't realize the odd result for Qiuyue Zhao Maoting if its Kaizhi was omitted.

In fact, though, at the end of Qiuyue Zhao Maoting there are the clear instructions to "do the Yellow Bell ending", followed by four clusters from near the middle of the Kaizhi (see this copy of the tablature and its explanation); this is organized here as Section 6. As indicated above, later compilers did not seem to realize that this clearly meant for them to repeat the Kaizhi from this point. Zheyin Shizi Qinpu has perhaps the worst understanding of the original intent, as it pairs lyrics against the four clusters at the end, but does not include the Kaizhi. Fengxuan Xuanpin also writes out these four clusters but does not include the Kaizhi itself. Yet these four clusters clearly cannot end the piece.

Zhu Quan gives little concrete information about Qiuyue Zhao Maoting, mentioning only that there were two possible creators, Cai Yong and Zuo Si. The only rationale I have been able to find for these connections is that each is associated with a poem or melody about autumn. For Cai Yong it is the melody Qiu Si (Autumn Thoughts); for Zuo Si it is the poem Qiu Feng (Autumn Winds).

Cai Yong (133-182) was a famous writer of parallel prose (which maintains structures found in poetry). He was also a reputed qin master, author of Qin Cao (an introduction to melodies for the qin), and creator of the Cai Shi Wunong (Five Melodies of Mr. Cai). Yuefu Shiji includes lyrics for four of these titles, skipping number 4, Zuo Chou (Sit in Sadness); for the fifth, called Qiu Si (Autumn Thoughts), includes six poems, two by Li Bai (701-762), three by Bao Rong (fl. ca. 820), and one by Sikong Shu (720-790). In sum, none of the Cai Shi Wunong lyrics are attributed to Cai Yong himself, and none survives in a musical setting.5

Zuo Si (ca. 250-305), also mentioned in connection with #9 Seeking Seclusion, was a poet and official from Shandong who became very popular in the Wei capital, Luoyang, at the end of the 3rd c. CE. His surviving opus includes a Miscellaneous Poem, also called Autumn Wind, as follows:6

How cold the autumn winds are,
    the white dew has become morning frost.
Soft branches each day become more brittle,
    green leaves daily turn yellow.
A clear moon comes out from behind a cloud,
    and from its brightness flows a pure light.
Into my pavilion from the forecourt
    come the morning squawks of soaring geese.
Lofty resolve is limited only by the four seas,
    solitude keeps one in an empty hall.
In the strength of youth I wouldn't stay in one place,
    but in the twilight of my life I am sadly detached.

The lyrics attached to the version in Zheyin Shizi Qinpu are more specific to the theme of the title. With some re-arranging of the rhythms I selected in my SQMP reconstruction these lyrics can be sung.7 However, because there are no lyrics for the Kai Zhi, I suspect that the person who attached the lyrics did not know the music very well. The pairing follows the standard method of one character per right hand stroke and two per left hand pluck.

Besides my own there are at least two other recordings of Qiuyue Zhao Maoting, one by Yao Gongbai, following his father Yao Bingyan's reconstruction. and one by Wu Wenguang on DVD (omits last section). Neither one includes the Kai Zhi.8

Original preface.9

The Emaciated Immortal says,

as for this piece, some say it was written by Cai Yong, others say it was by Zuo Si. The interest of the piece lies in its sketching a universe everywhere jade green, with all the myriad natural sounds silenced; there is (also) the bright autumn moon. The silhouettes reveal myriad images; at that time the lovely night is peaceful. In a wide open place shortly before midnight, a solitary man sits in a reed pavilion, cradling a qin on his legs, plucking the strings and singing; he is doing this to express the resolve in his heart, and yet when he sees the moon looking down on man, and (its light) entering the reed pavilion, this causes his heart and the Dao to become one, and his mind and nature also to come together. He doesn't care if it is a qin in his hands or his hands on a qin, everything is so natural. Its interest lies in this.

Five sections, untitled; titles added here from
Zheyin Shizi Qinpu, which has lyrics that don't fit very well.10

(00.00) 1. Blue sky
(00.49) 2. Quiet evening
(01.03) 3. Sitting in the pavilion
(01.27) 4. Expressing one's heart
(03.28) 5. The qin in harmony
(03.45) (6.) Return to the huangzhong ending
(04.19) -- harmonics
(04.33) -- End

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Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. Qiuyue Zhao Maoting 秋月昭茅亭
25505.37 秋月 qiuyue; nothing about music, reeds, or pavilions.
31477.42 茅亭 maoting; nothing about music or autumn moon.

2. Yellow Bell Mode (黃鐘調 huangzhong diao)
For Huangzhong mode, slacken 1st, tighten 5th strings each a half step. For more details on this mode see under Kai Zhi and in Shenpin Wuyi Yi. For more on modes in general see Modality in Early Ming Qin Tablature.

3. Image
傅東黎 Fu Dongli (1960 - ) is an artist living in Hangzhou.

4. Tracing Qiuyue Zhao Maoting
See Zha Guide 3/33/41 lists six occurrences, but one is musically unrelated. More details are in the appendix below.

5. 蔡邕 Cai Yong and Qiu Yue Zhao Maoting
No further details yet suggesting the connection between Cai Yong and this melody.

6. Zuo Si, Miscellaneous Poem (左思,雜詩)
The original text ([5+5] x 6), as published in Wen Xuan Folio 29 (p.1333), is as follows:


Zuo Si is also connected to the melody Zhao Yin.

7. The melody is quite angular and the lyrics of Zheyin do not fit it very well.

8. Misunderstanding the original tablature
The transcription in The Qin Repertoire of the Wu Family, pp.379-382, writes out the entire tablature, Where the instructions are "play the huangzhong ending" the transcription goes to back to an earlier section of the present piece instead of the appropriate place in the Kaizhi, then tacks on the four clusters, which makes no musical sense. This is presumably why this last section is not included in the recording.

There are also recoredings by 許健 Xu Jian and 梁銘越 Liang Mingyue that make the same or similar mistake

9. For the original Chinese text see 秋月昭茅亭.

10. The original titles are 1. 天碧 ; 2. 夜寂 ; 3. 亭座 ; 4. 許心 ; 5. 琴調 ; (6.) 入黃鍾煞 .

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Appendix: Chart Tracing Qiuyue Zhao Maoting (see also the Kai Zhi)
based mainly on Zha Fuxi's Guide 3/33/41

    (year; QQJC Vol/page)
Further information
(QQJC = 琴曲集成 Qinqu Jicheng; QF = 琴府 Qin Fu)
  1.  神奇秘譜
      (1425; I/129)
5; ending says "入黃鐘煞 go back to the Huangzhong ending", then has five more clusters; this is explained here; no phrasing indicated
  2.  浙音釋字琴譜
      (<1491; I/248)
5; same melody, but adds titles and lyrics; same ending, but book does not have a Kaizhi to go back to, and no lyrics are provided for the closing
  3. 風宣玄品
      (1539; II/377)
5, almost same melody as 1425, but with phrasing; includes "入黃鐘煞" and the five clusters, but there is no Kaizhi. There is a Shenpin Wuyi Yi for Huangzhong Diao at II/351, but it is unrelated.
  4. 重修真傳琴譜
      (1585; IV/498)
5, titled; same lyrics as <1491; music related but diff, and no reference to a Kaizhi
   . 思齊堂琴譜
      (1620; IX/36)
12, titled; unrelated (shang mode)
  5. 琴苑新傳全編
      (1670; XI/413)
5; music almost same as 1425, no phrasing indicated; no kaizhi: ends on XI/414 just before "入黃鐘煞", i.e., without the notes that end the 1425 version, explained here

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