T of C 
Qin as
Qin in
/ Song
Analysis History Ideo-
Personal email me search me
Qin Biographies   /   Qin Shi Bu 首頁
Yang Xiong
- Qin Shi Bu #37
揚雄 1
琴史補 #37 2
Yang Xiong's Qin?
Yang Xiong (53 BCE-18 CE), style name 子雲 Ziyun, also called 揚子 Yangzi, was an important poet and Confucianist philosopher. He has a very brief mention in Qin Shi,
3 expanded somewhat in a Qin Shi Bu entry, translated below. His connection to the qin is mainly through his Qin Qing Ying,4 said to be the oldest preserved treatise on the qin.5

David Knechtges' translation of Yang Xiong's biography in the Han Shu6 mentions the qin several times. First there is a reference to Boya in Yang Xiong's poem Refuting Sorrow.7 There are also references to the impossibility of playing qin without sound8 following popular tastes,9 and a further reference to Boya.10 However, there seems to be no mention of his Qin Qing Ying.

Yang Xiong's Qin Qing Ying is #9 in Qinshu Cunmu, which gives some details about it and about Yang Xiong, saying it is included in two book collections.11. It is also quoted in Yuefu Shiji (see below.

Taiyin Daquanji, Section 2B, discusses a qin called Clear Talent (Qing Ying) said to have belonged to Yang Xiong. It has no image, but one is included in Deyintang Qinpu12 (see at right). Presumably this suggests a connection between the essay and his personal instrument.

Yuefu Shiji quotes Qin Qing Ying in several places, including:

  1. Preface to Qin melody lyrics
  2. Zhi Zhao Fei Cao (see also in 1511)

Qin Shi Bu gives Qin Qing Ying as the source for its following biographies:

  1. Zhu Rong
  2. Mou Gou
  3. Governess of Wei Nü
  4. Sun Xi (Xun Xi)

Other quotes from or references to Yang Xiong and/or Qin Qing Ying on this site include:

  1. Qinshu Daquan, Folio 17 #27 quoting two stories from Qin Qing Ying
  2. Qin illustration 4 in Taiyin Daquanji, a qin said to have belonged to Emperor Shun, quoting Yang Xiong.
  3. Biography of Emperor Yao (a quote, source not identified)
  4. Biography of Xu You (a quote, source not identified)

The entry in Qin Shi Bu says as follows,9

Yang Xiong, style name 子雲 Ziyun, was from Chengdu in 蜀 the Shu commandery (Sichuan). Famous for his poetry, he rose to be Gentleman Attendant at the Palace Gate (黃門侍郎 Huangmen Shilang). He compiled 琴清英 Qin Qing Ying, one folio. It describes the 逸事 extraordinary affairs of qin players. Qing Ying was the name of a qin. Yang Xiong obtained the qin named Qing Ying and loved it so much that he named his writing accordingly.  
Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. 揚雄 Yang Xiong. Bio/514 (揚, not 楊!) does not mention Qin Qing Ying. Van Gulik, Lore, mentions him p.30 and p.54 (Return)

2. Three lines; sources given are: 漢書 Han Shu (see translation); 琴談 Qin Tan (QSCM #242; Qing dynasty); and 蓴湖漫錄 Chunhu Manlu. (Return)

3. The entry in Qin Shi says only, "Perhaps 揚子雲 Yang Ziyun wrote 琴清英 Qin Qing Ying, but now it is lost." (Return)

4. Qin Qing Ying 21570.xxx; Qing Ying18003.265/2: qin name; quotes 文獻通考,樂 but does not mention Yang Xiong. (Return)

5. Van Gulik, Lore, p.30 (Return)

6. The Han Shu Biography of Yang Xiong, Translated and Annotated by David R. Knechtges. Occasional Paper No. 14, Center for Asian Studies, Arizona State University, May, 1981. (Return)

7. Ibid, p. 21 (with endnote #135) (Return)

8. Ibid, p. 54 (Return)

9. Ibid, p. 56 (Return)

10. Ibid, p. 56 (with endnote #473) (Return)

11. The sources, indicated in small characters under the entry title, include:

12. This image from Deyintang Qinpu can be found in QQJC XII, p. 457. (Return)


Return to QSCB, or to the Guqin ToC.