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Hanshu Volume 95 The Southwest Peoples, Two Yues, and Chaoxian: Translation with Commentary

By Amies, Alex

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Book Id: WPLBN0100303200
Format Type: PDF (eBook)
File Size: 1.81 MB
Reproduction Date: 12/4/2020

Title: Hanshu Volume 95 The Southwest Peoples, Two Yues, and Chaoxian: Translation with Commentary  
Author: Amies, Alex
Language: English
Subject: Non Fiction, World History and History of Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, etc., Chinese History
Collections: History, Authors Community
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Publisher: Alex Amies
Member Page: alexamies


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Amies, A., & Ban, G. (2020). Hanshu Volume 95 The Southwest Peoples, Two Yues, and Chaoxian. Retrieved from

Volume 95 of the Hanshu was previously translated to English by Wylie (1880). Given that a prior translation exists, this translation should be considered as a re-translation. Why re-translate this book? The age of the Wylie translation , lack of correlation with source Chinese text, and the archaic transliteration system used make it somewhat inaccessible to present-day readers and due for revisiting. To assist future authors to translate related texts and to help readers relate the translation and commentary here, bilingual text with aligned Chinese and English is given. Although the first standard history, 史記 Shiji ‘Records of the Grand Historian, has been translated to English (Sima Qian and Watson tr. 1993; Ssu-ma Ch'ien, et al, 2020), the Hanshu is only partially translated and only a very small proportion of the remaining twenty-two standard histories for the succeeding dynasties up to the Ming dynasty have been translated (there is no standard history of the Qing). The Han dynasty is foundational in Chinese imperial history and this particular volume is critical to scholars studying fields related to Chinese history, such as historic literature, anthropology, Buddhism, art history, archeology, and also historians of the neighboring countries of Vietnam and Korea. For these scholars to jump into the middle of an ocean of mostly untranslated Chinese primary sources is very difficult and relying on secondary sources is not fully satisfactory. The author hopes that this work fills a part of the foundation needed. Some of the Chinese source text in Volume 95 of the Hanshu was copied verbatim by Bangu from volumes of the Shiji. However, there are also major differences. The ground-breaking translations from Wylie and Watson have made the work of the present author much easier. However, there are some interpolations in both Wylie’s and Watson’s translations, which the present author prefers to separate out to the commentary in order to keep the translated English text as close as possible to the source Chinese. Also, the present translation explicitly states where notes from historic commentators aid interpretation. Chinese written history is a treasure house of information not just for the history of China but also for the study of the history of the whole of Asia. For example, Lancaster (1981) describes Chinese literary sources for the history of Borobudur in present-day Indonesia. Wu and Dziwenka discuss the use of Buddhist scriptures translated into Chinese in the Korean Buddhist tradition (Wu and Dziwenka, pp. 268-303). Unfortunately, the proportion of historic Chinese literature that has been translated to English is still relatively small. This is important for our understanding of Asian history and also for the spread of Buddhist to China. Support for studies of cultural exchange with early China by scholars like Lancaster and other scholars of Buddhist studies is important to the author.

A new translation of Volume 95 of the Hanshu, also known as the Book of Han, is provided along with commentary on the text and discussion. The present translation is given with aligned Chinese source text. Volume 95 is a 傳 zhuan ‘biography’ describing the 西南夷 Southwest peoples of present-day Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou; 兩粵 two Yues, Nanyue of present-day Guangdong, Guangxi, and Vietnam and Minyue of present-day Fujian, Jiangsu, and adjacent areas; and 朝鮮 Chaoxian in the Korean peninsula. A discussion of how the text relates to trade, transportation, and cultural exchange in Panyu, in the area of present-day Guangzhou, as the capital of Nanyue and administrative center of the Nanhai commandery is also given.

卷九十五 西南夷兩粵朝鮮傳 Volume 95: The Southwest Peoples, Two Yues, and Chaoxian

Table of Contents
Introduction The Hanshu Regional Administration and Titles Transportation, Trade, and Cultural Exchange Translation Southwest peoples Nanyue Minyue Chaoxian Abbreviations References


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