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Showing posts from February, 2016

Ts'ang Chieh

Ts'ang Chieh is said to have had four eyes, and to have taken the idea of Chinese written language from the markings of birds' claws upon the sand. Upon the achievement of his task the sky rained grain and evil spirits mourned by night. Previous to this mankind had no other system than rude methods of knotting cords and notching sticks for noting events or communicating with one another at a distance.
Cangjie had four eyes and four pupils, and when he invented the characters, the deities and ghosts cried and the sky rained millet.
Shortly after unifying China, the Yellow Emperor, being dissatisfied with his "rope knot tying" method of recording information, charged Cangjie with the task of creating characters for writing.

The Yellow Emperor said, "These knots and sticks always make my head muddled. Mouse likes biting the ropes, and last night a fire almost destroyed all the sticks. Now I don't even know which prince has paid his tax, and which kingdom hasn&#…

The marquis of Jin saw in a dream a great demon

The marquis of Jin saw in a dream a great demon with dishevelled hair reaching to the ground, which beat its breast, and leaped up, saying. "You have slain my descendants unrighteously, and I have presented my request to God in consequence." It then broke the great gate of the palace, advanced to the gate of the State chamber, and entered. The duke was afraid and went into a side-chamber, the door of which it also broke. The duke then awoke, and called for the witch of Sangtian, who told him everything which he had dreamt. "What will be the issue?" asked the duke. "You will not taste the new wheat," she replied.

After this, the duke became very ill, and asked the services of a physician from Qin, the earl of which sent the physician Huan to do what he could for him. Before he came, the duke dreamt that his disease turned into two boys, who said, "That is a skilful physician; it is to be feared he will hurt us; how shall we get out of his way?" T…

Zhao Dun murdered his ruler

Duke Ling of Jin conducted himself in a way unbecoming a ruler. He levied heavy exactions, to supply him with means for the carving of his walls, and shot at people from the top of a tower to see how they tried to avoid his pellets. Because his cook had not done some bears' paws thoroughly, he put him to death, and made some of his women carry his body past the court in a basket. Zhao Dun and Shi Hui saw the man's hands, appearing through the basket, and asked about the matter, which caused them grief. Zhao Dun was about to go and remonstrate with the duke, when Shi Hui said to him, "If you remonstrate and are not attended to, no one can come after you. Let me go first; and if my remonstrance does not prevail, you can come after." Accordingly, Hui entered the palace, and advanced, through the first three divisions of it, to the open court before the hall, before he was seen by the duke, who then said, "I know my errors, and will change them." Hui bowed his …