Mao Minzhong
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Mao Minzhong
- Qin Shi Xu #20
毛敏仲 1
琴史續 #20 2
His style of qin?3 
Mao Minzhong, one of the most famous of all qin masters, was originally from Sanqu (Quzhou),
4 but lived in Hangzhou among a group of qin enthusiasts at the end of the Southern Song Dynasty (13th c.). Together with Xu Tianmin, Mao was a student of Liu Zhifang and a house guest5 of (and/or qin master for) of Yang Zuan, who apparently to a certain extent directed their work. Xu is known as a teacher who in particular passed on pieces of the Zhejiang school in the shang mode (see Shenpin Shang Yi). Mao, who had his basis in the Jiangxi style, after learning the Zhejiang style from Xu, became a famous creator of many new pieces.

It is said that after the fall of the Song dynasty Mao was summoned to the new capital, Beijing, where he spent his remaining years. For this see Yu Hui Tushan: originally created as a protest against the northern invaders, he later renamed it Shangguo Guanguang while preparing to play it for Kublai Khan.

Shen Qi Mi Pu attributes the following melodies directly to Mao Minzhong:

  1. Liezi Yufeng
  2. Shanju Yin
  3. Yu Hui Tushan
  4. Qiao Ge
  5. Zhuangzhou Meng Die

Other handbooks also attribute to Mao the following melodies:6

  1. Yin De
  2. Lingxu Yin
  3. Pei Lan
  4. Yu Ge

Xu Jian's History 6a3 has further information on Mao Minzhong, and mentions a number of the melodies attributed to him. These include most of the above, but also the following:7

  1. Youren Zhegui7
  2. Pingsha Luo Yan

He is mentioned some extant poetic writings. See, e.g., those by Wang Yuanliang.

The entry in Qinshi Xu says only

Mao Minzhong, from Sanqu, and Xu Tianmin, from 嚴陵 Yanling, created (compiled?) the 紫霞洞譜十三卷 Zixiadong Handbook, 13 Folios.

Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. Mao Minzhong sources
毛敏仲; Bio/xxx. See sources for Yang Zuan.

2. 1 line within the biography of Yang Zuan.

3. Mao Minzhong's 昭美 Zhao Mei (Bright and Beautiful)
The image above (also mentioned by Yu Ruming) is from Deyintang Qinpu (1691; QQJC XII, p. 459). The text says, "The style of Mao Minzhong of the Song dynasty. In olden days it was called 宋扁 Song Bian (Pine tablet?)." However, see also the Zhao Mei qin depicted in Taiyin Daquanji (Image 36).

4. Sanqu/Quzhou
Sanqu 三衢 10.1904 is an old name for (the main town of) 衢州府 Quzhou prefecture, also known as 衢縣 Quxian (Qu county). Quzhou is the most common name on modern maps. The town is most noted as a center of the Cult of Confucius beginning in the Southern Song Dynasty (historical note).

Quzhou is about 200 km southwest of Hangzhou near where the 衢江 Qu river is joined by the 金華江 Jinhua River, shortly after which it empties into the 富春 Fuchun river as it flows up to Hangzhou. (Someone going by river from Quzhou to Hangzhou would have passed what existed then of rhw Yan Ziling Fishing Terrace along the way.)

5. House Guests (門客 menke)
See under Xu Jian, Chapter 6a3.

6. Of these, the first two are from Shen Qi Mi Pu, but not connected there to Mao Minzhong. Yu Ge survives first from Zheyin Shizi Qinpu (<1491), but this version uses a different tuning from the one in Xilutang Qintong, which is the only one attributed to Mao Minzhong. And Pei Lan is found first in Fengxuan Xuanpin (1539).

7. For the melodies attributed to Mao Minzhong see Xu Jian, Qinshi Chubian, Chapter 6.A.; for Ping Sha see Chapter 7.A..

7. 幽人折桂 Youren Zhe Gui: The Learned Scholar Chops the Cassia Tree
Youren; Zhegui 12168.82: to take the imperial examinations, suggesting the impossibility of success (see the story of Wu Gang under Guanghan Qiu). Youren Zhegui is not in any known handbooks, though 12168.84 Zhegui Ling is an alternate title for a poetic rhythm with the same title as the Guanghan Qiu. And the qin tune list of [Song] Seng Ju Yue includes a Youren Zhe Fanggui (...fragrant cassia wood).

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