An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Chunqiu Zuoshizhuan shilei shimo 春秋左氏傳事類始末

Mar 1, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald

Chunqiu Zuoshizhuan shilei shimo 春秋左氏傳事類始末 "Historical events from the Spring and Autumn Annals and the Chronicle of Master Zuo in their entirety" is a history of the Spring and Autumn period 春秋 (770-5th cent. BCE) based on the Confucian Classic Chunqiu 春秋 "Spring and Autumn Annals" and its commentary and parallel Zuozhuan 左傳.

The 5-juan long book, written in the style of historical events in their entirety (jishi benmo 紀事本末), was compiled by the Southern Song period 南宋 (1127-1279) author Zhang Chong 章沖 xxx, courtesy name Maoshen 茂深. He hailed from Wuxing 吳興, Zhejiang, and was a great-grandson of the brother-in-law of Ye Mengde 葉夢得 (1077-1148), an expert in the Chunqiu Classic.

Zhang Chong was disappointed of the chronicle style in which the Chunqiu was written that disrupted coherent events, prohibited an historical overview even of the reign of one ruler, and even lead to contradictions in facts and the names of persons. He therefore decided to rearrange the text in the shape of coherent chapters describing one particular theme or sequence of events, a historiographic style that had been invented by Yuan Shu 袁樞 (1131-1205), author of Tongjian jishi benmo 通鑑紀事本末, a decade before. The chapters of Zhang Chong's books correspond to the reigns of the twelve dukes of the regional state of Lu 魯 during the Spring and Autumn period. Below this level, 357 smaller chapters narrate particular events.

The book was printed in 1185. It is included in the imperial series Siku quanshu 四庫全書 and Tongzhitangjingjie 通志堂經解.

Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰, eds. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 1, 906.
Wu Feng 吳楓, ed. (1987). Jianming Zhongguo guji cidian 簡明中國古籍辭典 (Changchun: Jilin wenshi chubanshe), 593.