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King Ji
- Qin Shi #6
王季 1
琴史 #6 2

King Ji, whose original name was Jili, was the youngest son of Gugong Danfu (Tai Wang), and the father of 昌 Chang (Wen Wang).

The account here begins by following Shi Ji #4, substituting the phrase 祇迪厥德 ("only/spirit followed their/her virtue"?) for 皆賢婦人 ("were both worthy ladies").4

The melody Aishang zhi Ge5 (Song of Sad Affection) is mentioned in Cai Yong Qin Cao commentary on Zhou Taibo,6 the second melody of the Hejian Zage.

The final reference is to the second line in the third section (of eight) of Sovereign Might, which is poem 241 in the Shi Jing. The full third section says,7

God examined his hills.
    The oak-trees were uprooted,
    The pines and cypresses were cleared.
God made land, made a counterpart,
    Beginning with Tai-bo and Wang Ji.
Now this Wang Ji
    Was of heart accommodating and friendly,
Friendly to his elder brother,
    So that his luck was strong.
Great were the gifts that were bestowed upon him,
    Blessings he recieved and no disasters,
    Utterly he swayed the whole land.

The original biography in Qin Shi is as follows.8

Wang Ji was a son of Tai Wang. Tai Wang had an eldest son named Taibo; the next one was named 虞仲 Yuzhong. (His wife) 太姜 Taijiang gave birth to a younger son named 季歷 Jili. Jili married 太任 Tairen. (Taijiang and Tairen) only followed their virtue. (When Tairen) gave birth to Chang (Wen Wang) happy omens suggested he would be a sage. Gugong said,

In my time there should be one who succeeds (to power): will it not be Chang? Taibo and Yuzhong, knowing that Gugong wished to promote Jili in order to pass authority to Chang, both ran off to Jingman, tattooing their bodies and cutting their hair in order to yield (their seniority) to Jili. When Gugong died, (Jili) became King Ji.

(King Ji), thinking of Taibo, whom he couldn't see, wrote Song of Sad Affection, as seen in Qin Cao. Its lyrics begin,

「先王既徂,長霣異都。哀喪傷心,未寫中懷。」

They also say,

「瞻望荊越,涕淚雙流。伯兮仲兮,逝肯來游,自非二人,誰寫我憂?」

Aiya!....

Not yet complete.

 
Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. 王季 Wang Ji (Wiki)
21295.734 王季, original name 季歷 Ji Li (or Jili). Only reference 史記,四.

King Ji's wife, 太任 Tai Ren, was also a significant personage; see Lienü Zhuan #106.
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2. The 琴史 Qin Shi entry has 10 lines (Return)

4. Account in Shi Ji #4
GSR I, p.57.
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5. 哀慕之歌 Aishang zhi Ge (Song of Sad Affection)
Aishang zhi Ge (3605.148 only Sad Affection) is here attributed to King Ji. The Cai Yong Qin Cao commentary on 周太伯 Zhou Taibo, the second melody of the Hejian Zage, also says King Ji wrote Aishang zhi Ge, quoting the entire lyrics. This seems to suggest that it was the same as Zhou Taibo (see next footnote.)
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6. 周太伯 Zhou Taibo
Zhou Taibo (3597.xxx; 5965.211 太伯 double surname of Gugong Danfu's eldest son, so named because Gugong's youngest son, King Ji, called him "great uncle") is the title of the second melody of the Hejian Zage section of Cai Yong's Qin Cao. See previous footnote.
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7. Shi Jing poem #241, third section (of eight)
The original text is as follows:

皇矣
帝省其山、柞棫斯拔、松柏斯兌。
帝作邦作對、自大伯王季。
維此王季、因心則友。
則友其兄、則篤其慶。
載錫之光、受祿無喪、奄有四方。

Translation above by Arthur Waley.
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8. 王季 King Ji in Qin Shi
The original text is:

王季,太王之子。太王有長子曰太伯,次子虞仲。太姜生少子季歷,季歷娶太任,祇迪厥德。生昌有聖瑞。古公曰:

「我世當有興者,其在昌乎!」

太伯虞仲知古公欲立季歷以傳昌。二人乃亡如荊蠻。文身斷髮,以讓季歷。古公卒,王季既立。

思太伯不得見,於是作哀慕之歌,見於《琴操》。其首云:

「先王既徂,長霣異都。哀喪傷心,未寫中懷。」

又曰:

「瞻望荊越,涕淚雙流。伯兮仲兮,逝肯來游,自非二人,誰寫我憂?」

嗚呼!太伯王季,孝友純至。周室席是以王,其積德可謂深厚矣。

《詩》云,「帝作邦作對,自太伯王季」。

其此之謂乎!

Translation incomplete.
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