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Zhuangzi and the Qin
The man and book 2
莊子 1

The Daoist philosopher Zhuangzi, sometimes said to have lived 370 to 301 BCE, is also said to have been born in the town of Meng,4 somewhere in the vicinity of Shangqiu in eastern Henan province. What little is known about him comes largely through the book called Zhuangzi. Although this site has many references to him (search), it is rare to find suggestions that he himself ever played the qin.

Qinshu Daquan, Folio 15, Written Records, quotes six relevant selections from the book of Zhuangzi.

In addition, specific qin melodies given a connection to Zhuangzi (usually through the book of Zhuangzi) include,

  1. Dun Shi Cao
  2. Zhuangzhou Meng Die
  3. Shenhua Yin
  4. Shen You Liu He
  5. Liezi Yu Feng
  6. Zepan Yin
  7. Kongtong Wen Dao

Another title, the melody for which has not survived, is Zhuangzhou Du Chu Yin.

Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. Zhuangzi 莊子 (370 to 301; see also Wikipedia articles)
31795.2 莊子 extensively introduces the book while .63 莊周 briefly introduces the man, giving his style name as 子休 Zixiu. The brief account in Shi Ji Annal 63 (GSR VII/23) says he was a 蒙人 man from Meng who served as 蒙漆園吏 an official in Qiyuan ("Lacquer Garden") during the periods of 梁惠王 King Hui of Liang (r. 370 - 355) and 齊宣王 King Xuan of Qi (r. 342 - 324), turning down a job offer from 楚威王 King Wei of Chu (r. 339 - 329); the rest of the account concerns his writing. Zhuangzi is sometimes referred to as 蒙吏 Meng Official, 蒙莊 Zhuang of Meng, and 蒙叟 Meng Elder.

2. Book of Zhuangzi 莊子
31795.2 莊子 gives considerable detail. The Chinese text is available online.

3. Image from an illustrated Liexian Zhuan.

4. Meng 蒙 (compare the birthplace of Laozi)
Zhuangzi's home town, Meng, is said to have been in either 楚 Chu or 宋 Song. At least three places in China have an Old Zhuangzi Village (莊子故里 Zhuangzi Guli) claimed to be Zhuangzi home town. One is near the modern town of 蒙城 Mengcheng, in northwest Anhui province about 160 km southeast of 商丘 Shangqiu in eastern Henan province. One is 東明縣 Dongming county, about 120 km northwest of Shangqiu in Shandong province. Perhaps the oldest claim (see GSR VII/23) is that of Shangqiu itself, which places it just northwest in nearby 民權縣 Minquan County. Zhuangzi is also sometimes known by the name of his supposed workplace, 漆園 Qiyuan, said to have been in Henan northeast of Kaifeng.

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