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Flowers, Trees the Guqin 1 花樹畫 
See also Guqin and gardens
Flourishing Orchids in the time of Confucius?2     
In addition to the titles here, commentary on or subtitles to qin melodies sometimes mention flowers and trees. The specific flower most commonly mentioned in titles is the orchid, but there are also several concerning plum blossoms (including one of the most popular of all qin melodies) and plum trees, several about pine trees (or wind in the pines), and at least one about peonies (a song that I have worked on, but have not as yet been able to make into a melody I consider interesting).


  1. Orchids, seven titles (currently seven melodies, listed here separately

  2. Meihua Sannong (Three Repetitions of Plum Blossom)
  3. Meihua Qu (Plum Blossom Tune)
  4. Mei Hua (Plum Blossoms)
  5. Mei Shao Yue (Moon Atop a Plum Tree)

  6. Feng Ru Song Ge (Song of Wind Through Pines)

  7. Xing Tan (Apricot Tree Forum)

  8. Mudan Fu (Rhapsody on Peonies3)

Cherries and cherry blossoms?
Interestly, although plums and plum blossoms are a common theme in qin melodies, there is virtually no mention of cherries or cherry blossoms. The Wikipedia article
Prunus mume has interesting comments and further links comparing attitudes in China and Japan towards cherry and plum blossoms. For example, "It has been suggested that the Japanese practice of cherry blossom viewing, Hanami, may have originated from a Chinese custom of poetry and wine under plum blossom trees...." It has also been suggested that in modern China cherry blossom viewing has been inspired not so much by tradition as by the popularity of the Japanese custom. This is separate from the issue of where the blossoms themselves originated, as discussed in this article.

There are actually two words for cherry to consider,
        常棣 chang di (or 棠棣 tangdi)
        櫻 ying (or 樱桃 yingtao)
In Japan, where literary and musical references to the cherry seem much more frequent, the common term is the latter (櫻, pronounced "sakura"). Cherry references on this site then include:

Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. Flowers and Trees
References include Wikipedia Bird-and-flower painting.

2. Flourishing Orchids in the time of Confucius?
With poetry and song is it important to know that evidence suggests that what we today call orchids were quite a different flower in the past? For one thing, those orchids were known for their smell, today they are appreciated for their appearance. For this see, Various meanings of lan".

3. Mudan Fu
Reconstruction not yet complete.

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