An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History, Literature and Art

Longfei jilüe 龍飛紀略

Feb 21, 2016 © Ulrich Theobald

Longfei jilüe 龍飛紀略 "Military annals of the rising dragons" is a chronicle on the foundation of the Ming dynasty written by Wu Pu 吳樸 (c. 1500-1570, original name Bao 雹, courtesy name Zihua 子華 or Huafu 華甫), who also authored the geographies Duhai fangcheng 渡海方程 and Jiubian tuban 九邊圖本 and the medical text Yichi wennan 醫齒問難.

The preface and the principles of compilations were written in 1544, when the book was first printed. The original title was Zhengfa liyue shu 征伐禮樂書 "Book on military campaigns and court ceremonies and ritual music", expressing the martial and the civilian side of the Ming government. The style of the 8-juan long text follows the pattern of Zhu Xi's 朱熹 (1130-1200) critical history Tongjian gangmu 通鑑綱目, with headlines in short phrases. It narrates the history of the first emperor of the Ming, Taizu 明太祖 (r. 1368-1398), and of his successor, the Jianwen Emperor 建文帝 (r. 1399-1403). Because the latter was later condemned as an illegal ruler, his reign motto Jianwen was declared invalid, and is not used in the main text of the book, but only in the commentaries. For the Yuan dynasty 元 (1279-1368), the reign mottos are likewise not used, but are replaced by the designation according to the sexagenary cycle.

The book was not included in the imperial collectanea Siku quanshu 四庫全書, but is found in the collectanea Siku quanshu cunmu congshu 四庫全書存目叢書.

Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰, ed. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 1, 897.
Wu Feng, ed. 吳楓 (1987). Jianming Zhongguo guji cidian 簡明中國古籍辭典 (Jilin: Changchun wenshi chubanshe), 221.