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"Correct Toko Kinpu"
Published 2001 by Sakata Shinichi,2 as much as possible reconstructing the most complete Toko Kinpu (1710)
東皋琴譜正本 1 
Donggao Qinpu Zhengben  
Re-issued 2015 by the Shanghai Music Publishing Society, with original and new commentary 3 Modern Japanese edition (pdf) 4        

"Zhengben" in the title could also mean "orthodox version". In 2001 Sakata Shinichi published, in a limited edition, his reconstruction of Sugiura Kinsen's Toko Kinpu (1710), considered as the most complete and correct publication of the qin repertoire of Shin Etsu.5 A Chinese edition was then published in 2015. For both editions the pagination of the melodies is basically the same.6

The following Table of Contents has three categories of melody (not mutually exclusive):

Also significant is the fact that several melodies published in other Japanese handbooks do not appear here.8

Table of Contents

    I. 卷首 Shou juan: Head Volume

  1. 調絃入弄 (仙翁操)Tiao Xian Runong (compare 仙翁操 Xian Weng Cao; in Hewen ZG; I/33)

    II. 上卷 Shang juan: Former volume

    Gong mode (宮音 Gong yin)
  2. 高山         Gao Shan (6 sections; no lyrics and music quite diff. from in Hewen; ZG; chart; II/6)
                      Unsigned preface for Gao Shan
  3. 流水         Liu Shui (8 sections; no lyrics; not in QQJC XII; ZG; copies 1589; II/11)
                      Afterword for Gao Shan and Liu Shui by Tōkō Shinetsu
  4. 鷗鷺忘機 Oulu Wang Ji (5 sections; no lyrics; not in QQJC XII; see 1677 in chart; II/19)
  5. 清平樂  (七夕) Qing Ping Yue; in Hewen (II/22)
  6. 浪淘沙  (懷舊) Lang Tao Sha; in Hewen (II/23)
  7. 東風齊著力 Dong Feng Qi Zhu Li; in Hewen (II/24)

    III. 中卷 Zhong juan: Middle volume

    Shang mode (商音 Shang yin)
  8. 思賢操     Si Xian Cao; not in QQJC XII (aka Yasheng Cao; 7 sections; "大哉顏回,惜乎大哉顏回...."; see chart; III/3)
  9. 三才引     San Cai Yin; in Hewen (III/10)
  10. 大哉引     Da Zai Yin; in Hewen (III/13)
  11. 秋風辭     Qiu Feng Ci; in Hewen (III/16)
  12. 歸去來辭 Gui Qu Lai Ci; in Hewen (III/18)
  13. 子夜吳歌 Ziye Wu Ge; in Hewen (III/25)
  14. 幽澗泉     You Jian Quan; in Hewen (III/26)
  15. 久別離     Jiu Bie Li; in Hewen (III/28)
  16. 醉翁操     Zui Weng Cao; in Hewen (from Qugong Xuan; III/30)
  17. 八聲甘州 Ba Sheng Ganzhou; in Hewen (III/33)
  18. 瑞鶴仙     Rui He Xian; in Hewen (III/35)
  19. 鳳凰臺上億吹簫 Fenghuang Taishang Yi Chui Xiao; in Hewen (III/37)
  20. 大平引     Taiping Yin; in Hewen (III/39)
  21. 鶴沖霄     He Chong Xiao; in Hewen (III/41)
  22. 南浦月     Nan Pu Yue; in Hewen (III/42)
  23. 飛瓊吟     Fei Qiong Yin; in Hewen (III/43)
  24. 梅花         Mei Hua; in Hewen (ToC had 瑤芳引 Yao Fang Yin; III/45)
  25. 偶成         Ou Cheng; in Hewen (III/47)
  26. 石交吟     Shi Jiao Yin; in Dayuan (III/49)
  27. 滄浪歌     Canglang Ge; in Meiwa (III/51)
  28. 靜觀吟     Jing Guan Yin (3 sections; no lyrics; not in QQJC XII); compare 1609; from Qugong Xuan; III/52)
  29. 鳳梧鳴佩,其一 Feng Wu Ming Pei,9 #1; (from Qugong Xuan; not in QQJC XII
    脩竹吟風,其二 Xiu Zhu Yin Feng, #2; connected to Feng Wu, both "東皋手挍"; see Wang Di); (III/54b)
  30. 鳴鳳朝陽 Ming Feng Chaoyang; in Dayuan (from Qugong Xuan; III/56)
  31. 釋談章     Shitan Zhang ("蝶庵訂正": copies 1650; not in QQJC XII; III/58)

    IV. 下卷 Xia juan: Latter volume

    Jiao mode (角音 Jiao yin)
  32. 雁落平沙 Yan Luo Pingsha, 5 sections; no lyrics; (not in QQJC XII; IV/3)
  33. 寄隱者     Ji Yinzhe; in Meiwa (IV/8)
  34. 賀新郎     He Xin Lang 10 (not in QQJC XII); subtitle: 後赤壁 Hou Chibi; lyrics below
    Zhi mode (徴音 Zhi yin)
  35. 南薫歌     Nanxun Ge (not in QQJC XII; trace); lyrics as 1511, also played twice, but diff music; diff. from the abbreviated Nanfeng Ge in Meiwa (IV/11)
    Yu mode (羽音 Yu yin)
  36. 倚蘭操     Yi Lan Cao; attrib. Confucius; lyrics like 1511 Section 1; in Dayuan (IV/16)
  37. 嵇中散     Xi Zhongsan (not in QQJC XII; lyrics ("凌扶搖兮....") are two quotes from Xi Kang's Qin Fu; IV/18)
  38. 平沙落雁 Pingsha Luo Yan, 13 sections; no lyrics (草堂祕譜 Caotang Secret Version; IV/20)
  39. 憶秦娥     Yi Qin E 11 (not in QQJC XII but unrelated 1682 version listed in Zha Guide (IV/27)
  40. 離別難     Libie Nan #2 in Hewen (What about #1 [context]?; IV/29)
  41. 華清引     Hua Qing Yin; in Hewen (IV/31)
  42. 霹靂引     Pili Yin; in Hewen(IV/32)
  43. 月當廳     Yue Dang Ting; in Hewen (IV/35)
  44. 憶王孫     Yi Wangsun; in Hewen (IV/37)
  45. 草堂吟     Caotang Yin; in Hewen (from Qugong Xuan; IV/38)
  46. 長相思     Chang Xiang Si; in Hewen (IV/42)
  47. 相思曲     Xiang Si Qu (5 versions); in Hewen (IV/43)
  48. 竹枝詞     Zhuzhi Ci; in Hewen (from Qugong Xuan; IV/45)
  49. 小操         Xiao Cao; in Hewen (from Qugong Xuan; IV/46)
    Shangjiao mode (商角音 Shangjiao yin)
  50. 箕山操     Jishan Cao; in Hewen (from Qugong Xuan; IV/47)

    V. 卷附 Juan fu: Appended volume (contains seven "扶桑操 Fusang Cao", three of them in QQJC)

  51. 熙春操     Xi Chun Cao; in Hewen (V/2)
  52. 思親引     Si Qin Yin; in Hewen (V/5)

    #53-56 are called 和歌 waka 12 (a Japanese poetic form; all seem intended to be in the form called Tanka (5-7-5-7-7) but if so the pairing is not exact, and none has its lyrics added)

  53. 春野         Chun Ye (Haruno; not in QQJC XII; dian: 5,7,5,7,7; Yang, pp.70-71: lyrics by 光孝天皇御製 Emperor Kōkō Tennō [Wiki]; V/8)
  54. 富士         Fu Shi (Fuji; not in QQJC XII; 點 dian: 6,7?,5,8?,7: 33?; Yang, p.72: by 山辺赤人 Yamabe Akahito; V/8)
  55. 山里/山裏 Shan Li (Yama Sato; not in QQJC XII; 點 dian: 5,7,5,7,7; Yang, p.72: by Minamoto Muneyuki 源宗于; V/9)
  56. 山櫻         Shan Ying (Yama Sakura; not in QQJC XII; 點 dian: 5,6?,5,7,7: 30?; Yang, pp.71: by Daisōjō Gyōson 大僧正行尊; V/9)

  57. 安排曲     An Pai Qu; in Hewen (tablature printed here; lyrics in large calligraphy; V/10)

End of the 2001/2015 edition of Toko Kinpu (V/43b)

Addendum: Melodies from other early Japanese handbooks not included in Toko Kinpu Zhengchuan
This 2001/2015 edition of Toko Kinpu did not include the following eight melodies; note that the first three use non-standard tuning, the fourth to seventh are very different versions from here, and the eighth through tenth seem to survive only from the handbook published in 1898.

  1. 陽關三疊 Yangguan Sandie (qiliang tuning)
  2. 陽關曲     Yangguan Qu (qiliang tuning)
  3. 樂極吟     Le Ji Yin (ruibin; Liu Zongyuan)i
  4. 高山         Gao Shan (it is different from the version above)
  5. 南薫歌     Nan Xun Ge (this and Nan Feng Ge are both different from the Nan Xun Cao above)
  6. 操縵引     Caoman Yin (compare Tiao Xian Runong above)
  7. 離別難甲 Libie Nan #1 (compare Libie Nan #2 above)
  8. 漁樵問答 Yu Qiao Wenda
  9. 夜座         Ye Zuo
  10. 舟夜         Zhou Ye

All were in the Japanese handbooks from QQJC XII. The footnote below mentions some others that were not included.

Melodies from Qin handbooks from China known to have been in Japan at this time
According to
Yang (p.38) Jiang Xingchou brought six qin handbooks with him when he arrived in Japan in 1676. All but one (1614) focus on qin songs. From here Yang specifically names, from their mention in correspondence at that time, several melodies not otherwise mentioned here. These include:

  1. 關雎(曲)Guan Ju (Qu) of 1491 (with chart), 1511 and 1618 (Yang, pp. 44-45)
  2. 歸去來辭    Gui Qu Lai Ci of 1511 (Yang, p. 47 [more likely from 1589]; compare above)
  3. 臨河修禊    Lin He Xiu Xi of 1664 (called 蘭亭 Lan Ting; Yang, p. 48)

Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. Orthodox/Correct Toko Kinpu (東皋琴譜正本 Toko Kinpu Shohon (from 1710)
My initial understanding of this handbook has largely been based on Yang Yuanzheng, Japonifying the qin. Yang's discussion of the reconstruction of this handbook (the title of which he romanizes as Toko Kinfu) begins on p. 56.

Some puzzling aspects of this Toko Kinpu are as follows:

Further study will certainly bring more questions.

Knowing the complete repertoire of (or available to) Shin Etsu and his students is complicated by the fact that, in lieu of Shin Etsu himself compiling a handbook, since 1676 so many people have published their own "Toko Kinpu" in Japan, all trying to pass on his tradition. Unfortunately, they were not all availabe to Zha Fuxi when he compiled the Qinqu Jicheng in the 1950s. In particular there were apparently some more complete ones he never saw. It is not yet clear whether the one published in 2001 largely replicates one such complete one, or is an amalgam of several.

The edition published in 2001 it was a limited edition (50 copies). It was apparently published privately by the senior Japanese qin specialist 坂田進一 Sakata Shinichi (information from the 秋月齋 Autumn Moon Studio). It is apparently based on a reconstruction of the Toko Kinpu of 1710 attributed to Sugiura Kinzen (1660-1711):


The original of this being now lost, the reconstruction was made based on a very complete description made in the late 19th century as well as a number of surviving partial volumes (Yang, p.56)

Sugiura, along with 人見竹洞 Hitomi Chikudo (1620~1688), were the best known of Shin'etsu's students; 小野田東川 Onoda Tozen, a student of Sugiura, became a professional qin teacher with perhaps over 100 students. All the songs in this handbook have lyrics, so in this quote they all seem to be referred to as 和歌 waka, though this should actually refer not to original Chinese poems published or set to music in Japan but to Japanese poems written in Chinese characters, as here.

Some other early Japanese handbooks were also consulted (The reference for this is "2001坂田版東皋琴譜正本(1.序:寒斎「坂田」本 +2.譜:妻鹿本=1,2の合本)", but I have not yet seen it (妻鹿 is 妻鹿友樵 Mega Yusho 1826-1896) ). Some of the other important early Japanese handbooks are discussed at the top of Guqin Handbooks Published in Japan, with some information on later ones given later on that page. The research by Sakata Shinichi apparently determined that several of the melodies from Hewen Zhuyin Qinpu (said to date from "before 1676", meaning they must have been brought to Japan by Shin-Etsu in 1677, but actually surviving from a much later copy) were probably not actually part of Shin-Etsu's own repertoire.

For an index of the works in 琴曲集成 Qinqu Jicheng, Volume XII/165-381, as well as other related information see Guqin Handbooks Published in Japan.

2. 坂田進一 SAKATA Shinichi
Mr. Sakata is a musicologist, composer and violinist, but his deep love was for the guqin. Born into a family of biwa players, he became enamored of the qin in 1958 when he was able to have some lessons from Zha Fuxi while the latter was visiting Japan. At age 11 he met 劉老先生 an old Mr. Liu, who had been a student of 楊時百 Yang Shibai in China but had then moved to Japan, and for four years studied from Mr. Liu 洞簫 dongxiao and calligraphy as well as continuing to study guqin. Later, as an adult, Mr. Sakata studied qin from 田邊尚雄 Tanabe Hisao. In 1971 Sakata Shinichi founded the Tokyo Qin Society (東京琴社 Tokyo Kinsha).

3. Chinese edition, 2015
The chief editor seems to be 趙維平 Zhao Weiping, a professor at the Shanghai Conservatory. The first difference one notices between this and the handbooks published in Qinqu Jicheng Volume XII is that the latter all include along with the lyrics Japanese kana that give the pronunciation of the Chinese characters. I don't yet know whether these are in the Japanese edition or in the edition on which that one was based.

I obtained my copy of this in December 2018 so my work on it is preliminary.

4. First page of the "Toko Kinpu Correct Edition" (pdf of whole ToC)
Sent to me from 秋月齋. This page originated when I had not yet seen the full edition, only this photocopy of the Table of Contents. The credits on the lower right of the page are:

The volume, originally by 杉浦琴川 Sugiura Kinsen, is also mentioned by Zha Fuxi as one he did not see.

5. Source materials
See Yang, p.56.

6. Table of Contents
Further introductions to these pieces are mostly where they are included in the handbooks published in Japan>.

Some pieces refer to a 草堂祕譜 Caotang Mipu (same meaning as 草堂秘譜); it is not yet clear what this is.

7. Melodies from here not in the Japanese editions included in Vol. XII of Qinqu Jicheng) ("not in QQJC XII")
The Japanese handbooks in QQJC are all in Vol. XII. Among the above 57 titles there seem to be 17 that were not included in the QQJC Japanese handbooks (some may have the same title but the music is quite different). It is perhaps noteworthy that all six of those without lyrics (the four waka at the end probably were intended to have them), are versions of full length melodies found in earlier handbooks. While it is true that there are only the six full length instrumental pieces in this Toko Kinpu plus perhaps two full-length melodies with lyrics in the Japanese handbooks included in Qinqu Jicheng Gao Shan and Gui Qu Lai Ci, it has been said that the inclusion of these full length pieces in the "orthodox" Toko Kinpu suggests that the level of play in Japan might have been higher than is commonly argued. Of course, this also leaves open the issue of whether it is in fact the pieces that seem the easiest are in fact the most difficult to fully master.

  1. 高山 Gao Shan; quite different from in Hewen (trace; NL)
  2. 流水 Liu Shui; trace; NL)
  3. 鷗鷺忘機 Oulu Wang Ji (trace; NL)
  4. 思賢操 Si Xian Cao (trace)
  5. 靜觀吟 Jing Guan Yin (trace; NL)
  6. 鳳梧鳴佩 Feng Wu Ming Pei; new
  7. 釋談章 Shitan Zhang (trace)
  8. 雁落平沙 Yan Luo Pingsha, 5 sections (trace; NL)
  9. 賀新郎 He Xin Lang (new; see below)
  10. 南薫歌 Nan Xun Ge (different from Nan Feng Ge/Nan Xun Cao; trace)
  11. 嵇中散 Ji Zhongsan (Ji Kang: Xi Kang; new)
  12. 平沙落雁 Pingsha Luo Yan, 13 sections (trace; NL)
  13. 憶秦娥 Yi Qin E; Zha Guide; see below; new
  14. 春野 Chun Ye (Haruno; see 琴譜雜錄; new; NL)
  15. 富士 Fu Shi (Fuji; see 琴譜雜錄; new; NL)
  16. 山里 Shan Li (Yamasato; see 琴譜雜錄; new; NL)
  17. 山櫻 Shan Ying (Yamasakura; see 琴譜雜錄; new; NL)

10 of these melodies (marked "NL") have no lyrics, though at least 4 of those 10 (i.e., the last four pieces) were almost certainly intended to have them. Note also that some versions in this Toko Kinpu Zhengben are quite different from the versions in QQJC XII. Examples of these include Gao Shan.

8. Melodies from other early Japanese handbooks not included here
This 2001 edition of Toko Kinpu did not include the
above ten melodies: perhaps the editor(s) thought they dated from later than Shin-Etsu himself. All of them are in editions found in Qinqu Jicheng, three of them are from Hewen Zhuyin Qinpu: Libie Nan #1, Le Ji Yin and Gao Shan. Hewen is generally treated as an early handbook, so it would be interesting to know what the real origin of these three melodies is thought to be.

There is a chart dated 2009 (.xlsx; see pdf version), apparently based on the reconstructed 1710 Toko Qinpu Zhenchuan, that at the end mentions most of these melodies missing from that edition (for example, it doesn't have both editions of Libie Nan or one one section instrumental version of this Cao Man Yin, and 舟夜 Zhou Ye it calls 舟座 Zhou Zuo).

The same chart also says that last three of the above melodies were included in one of the handbooks connected to Tokugawa Motoko.

9. 鳳梧鳴珮 Feng Wu Ming Pei (A Phoenix in a tree calls out with a jade pendant) (III/54a)
& 修竹吟風 Xiu Zhu Yin Feng (Tall thin bamboo hums in a breeze) (III/54b)
Xiu Zhu Yin Feng has no apparent relation to 修竹留風 Xiu Zhu Liu Feng (XII/89; 16 sections, no lyrics). It is not clear why these two short melodies (both basically (7+7) x 2) are put together and called #1 and #2. No references:

Both are said to be "東皋手挍 hand copied by Donggao" and both are said to be "曲肱軒藏譜 tablature from Qugong Xuan"); neither has been translated.

The lyrics of 鳳梧鳴珮 Feng Wu Ming Pei (source not given) are as follows,


As for the lyrics of 修竹吟風 Xiu Zhu Yin Feng (47631.xxx), they are:


Feng Wu Ming Pei and Xiu Zhu Yin Feng have been transcribed separately in Wang Di, Xian Ge Ya Yun, as #45 (p.110) and #48 (p.114) respectively. There they are identified as from Toko Kinpu but no mention is made that they are from this edition that was not publicly available at the time.

10. 賀新郎 He Xin Lang
He Xin Lang is the name of a cipai: "後赤壁,宋謙父填詞" (relationship with Hou Chibi Fu? The lyrics, by an anonymous Song dynasty poet, seem to paraphrase parts of that poem. (IV/9)

The lyrics are as follows:


No translations available. (Compare《賀新郎 送胡邦衡待制赴新州》by 蔡瑤銑?)

11. 憶秦娥 Yi Qin E
11558.7 name of a cipai, lyrics mentioned first are by Li Bai, as follows:


Translated freely by 許鳶沖 Xu Yuanchong (from online)

The flute is mute,
    Waking from moonlit dream, she feels a grief acute.
O moon, O flute, Year after year, do you not grieve
    To see 'neath willows people leave?

On Merry-making Plain, on Mountain-Climbing Day,
    She receives no letter from ancient Northwest way.
    Over ancient way,
The sun declines, the west wind falls
    Over royal tombs and palace walls.

However, lyrics for the above are by Zhou Banyan, as follows:


Yi Qin E is also transcribed in Wang Di, Xian Ge Ya Yun, #42 (p.106).

As well as here, Zha Guide lists it in 1682 (XII/36), where it has the same form but different lyrics and music.

12. 和歌 Waka (and 短歌 Tanka)
The Wiki pages for Waka and Tanka distinguish between modern tanka and the classical version mentioned above. Yang (pp.70-72) has some comment on waka, with translations of two, Haruno and Yama Zakura.

It is beyond the scope of this site to give much detail about the waka settings. However, the general idea can be found with the following introduction to the first waka above, 春野 Haruno; the specific name of the piece is 若菜 Wakana (Early Spring Herbs).

There is a recording of Haruno/Wakana from the "Autumn Moon Studio" (秋月齋 Qiuyue Zhai) linked from a web page called wakana. My description below should be examined together with the commentary and linked mp3 recording.

The explanation there begins by giving the original text of the waka:

君がため 春の野にいでて 若菜摘む 
わが衣手に 雪はふりつつ
"It is for your sake, That I walk the fields in spring, Gathering green herbs,
While my garment’s hanging sleeves, Are speckled with falling snow.
(translation from Yang, p.72)

The syllablic structure as shown here seems to be 5+8+5+7+7 not 5+7+5+7+7. Perhaps it is a coincidence that the tablature places and ornament on the extra syllable. In addition, the singer here seems to add an additional syllable in the fourth line (wa ka ga instead of wa ga).

き み が た め
Ki-mi gata me

は る の の に い で て
Haru no no ni i dete

わ か な つ む
wa ka __ natsu mu

わ が こ ろ も で に
wa ga ko ro mo de ni

ゆ き は ふ り つ つ
yuki wa furitsutsu

The Autumn Moon Studio (秋月齋 Qiuyue Zhai) also has other interesting recordings online, such as his rendition of a Gyokudo song, originally linked from here/.

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