Qianjiashi 千家詩 "Poems of one thousand writers" is an anthology of poems from the Tang 唐 (618-907), Five Dynasties 五代 (907-960) and Song 宋 (960-1279) period. The complete title of the collection is Fenmen leizuan Tang-Songshi xian qianjia shixuan 分門纂類唐宋時賢千家詩選 "Selected poems of one thousand excellent authors from the Tang and Song periods, arranged in various categories". It was compiled during the Southern Song period 南宋 (1127-1279) by Liu Kezhuang 劉克莊 (1187-1269). Following his scholarly style name, Houcun 後村, the anthology is also called Houcun Qianjiashi 後村千家詩. It has a length of 22 juan and is divided into 14 chapters.
The Qianjiashi was revised and newly arranged by Wang Xiang 王相 (d. 1524) as Xinjuan wuyan qianjia shi 新鐫五言千家詩, only including 84 poems with five-syllable verses (wuyan shi 五言詩) written by 50 authors. Another extraction has been made by Xie Fangde 謝枋得 (1226-1289), who only selected poems with seven-syllable verses (qiyan shi 七言詩). His book is called Chongding qianjiashi 重訂千家詩 or Qiyan qianjiashi 七言千家詩 and was commented by Wang Xiang. It includes 140 poems of more than 80 writers (inlcuding two poems of Ming period 明 [1368-1644] persons). Both books are 2-juan-long, the first including short poems (jueju 絕句), and the latter regular poems (lüshi 律詩).
Another version of the Qianjiashi also attributed to Xie Fangde, and the most common one, has a length of 4 juan, with each fascicle corresponding to one chapter. The poems in this version are arranged in the categories five-syllable short poems (wuyan jueju 五言絕句), five-syllable regular poems (wuyan lüshi 五言律詩), seven-syllable short poems (qiyan jueju 七言絕句) and seven-syllable regular poems (qiyan lüshi 七言律詩). The greatest part of the poems has been written by Song-period authors. The Qianjiashi has always been used as a textbook for elementary learning. In 1706 the Xie extract was printed by Cao Yin 曹寅 (1658-1712), the first part including 85 short poems, and the second part 38 regular poems.
In 1957 the Donghai Yishu Press 東海文藝出版社 published an annotated version of this book. The versions of Wang Xiang and Xie Fangde were published in a joint edition by the Hubei Renmin Press 湖北人民出版社, together with a commentary as Qianjiashi zhu 千家詩注. The Shaanxi Renmin Press published the Xin Qianjiashi xinshi 新千家詩新釋, and the Gansu Renmin Press 甘肅人民出版社 published the Qianjiashi zhuxi 千家詩注析 in 1982.
There is a supplement to the common Qianjiashi versions called Xiaoxue Qianjiashi 小學千家詩. It was compiled by a scholar called Qiyun Shanren 寄雲山人 "Mountain-dweller dispatching the clouds" or Liangqihaizhai Xueren 梁溪海齋學人 "Scholar from the Hermitage of the bridges, creeks and the sea". A great part of the poems have been written by the compiler himself. The poems have a very simple nature and are apparently specially designed for elementary learning.
|Day and night
|Bushes and trees
|Palaces and buildings
|Tools and objects
|Birds and beasts