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All (officers) in attendance on the ruler let the sash hang down till their feet seemed to tread on the lower edge (of their skirt) 1. Their chins projected like the eaves of a house, and their hands were clasped before them low down. Their eyes were directed downwards, and their ears were higher than the eyes. They saw (the ruler) from his girdle up to his collar. They listened to him with their ears turned to the left 2.

When the ruler called (an officer) to his presence, he might send three tokens. If two of them came to him, he ran (to answer the message); if (only) one, he yet walked quickly. If in his office, he did not wait for his shoes; if he were outside elsewhere, he did not wait for his carriage.

When an officer received a visit from a Great officer, he did not venture to bow (when he went) to meet him 3; but be did so when escorting him on his departure. When he went to visit one of higher rank than himself, he first bowed (at the gate) and then went into his presence. If the other bowed to him in replying, he hurried on one side to avoid (the honour).

When an officer was speaking before the ruler, if he had occasion to speak of a Great officer who was dead, he called him by his posthumous epithet, or by the designation of his maturity; if of an officer (who was similarly dead), he called him by his name. When speaking with a Great officer, he mentioned officers by their name, and (other) Great officers by their designation.

In speaking at a Great officer's, he avoided using the name of the (former) ruler, but not that of any of his own dead. At all sacrifices and in the ancestral temple, there was no avoiding of names. In school there was no avoiding of any character in the text.

Anciently, men of rank did not fail to wear their girdle-pendants with their precious stones, those on the right giving the notes Kih and Kio, and those on the left Kung and Yü 4.When (the king or ruler) was walking quickly (to the court of audience), he did so to the music of the Zhâi Khî; when walking more quickly (back to the reception-hall), they played the Sze hsiâ 5. When turning round, he made a complete circle; when turning in another direction, he did so at a right angle. When advancing, he inclined forward a little; he held himself up straight; and in all these movements, the pieces of jade emitted their tinklings. So also the man of rank, when in his carriage, heard the harmonious sounds of its bells; and, when walking, those of his pendant jade-stones; and in this way evil and depraved thoughts found no entrance into his mind.

When the ruler was present, (his son and heir) did not wear the pendant of jade-stones. He tied it up on the left of his girdle, and left free the pendant (of useful things) on the right. When seated at ease, he wore the (jade) pendant; but in court, he tied it up 6.In fasting and vigil they wore it, but the strings were turned round, and fastened at the girdle. They wore then the purple knee-covers 7.

All wore the jade-stone pendant at the girdle, excepting during the mourning rites. (At the end of the middle string) in it was the tooth-like piece, colliding with the others. A man of rank was never without this pendant, excepting for some sufficient reason; he regarded the pieces of jade as emblematic of the virtues (which he should cultivate).

The son of Heaven had his pendant composed of beads of white jade, hung on dark-coloured strings; a duke or marquis, his of jade-beads of hill-azure, on vermilion strings; a Great officer, his of beads of aqua-marine, on black strings; an heir-son, his of beads of Yü jade, on variegated strings; an ordinary officer, his of beads of jade-like quartz, on orange-coloured strings.Confucius wore at his pendant balls of ivory 8, five inches (round), on gray strings.

According to the regulations for (the dress of) a lad 9, his upper garment was of black linen, with an embroidered edging. His sash was embroidered, and (also) the strings for the button-loops (of his girdle). With such a string he bound up his hair. The embroidered border and strings were all red.

When the ends of fastening strings reached to the girdle, if they had any toilsome business to do, they put them aside. If they were running, they thrust them in the breast 10.

A lad did not wear furs, nor silk, nor the ornamental points on his shoes. He did not wear the three months' mourning. He did not wear the hempen band, when receiving any orders. When he had nothing to do (in mourning rites), he stood on the north of the principal mourner, with his face to the south. When going to see a teacher, he followed in the suite of others, and entered his apartment.

When one was sitting at a meal with another older than himself, or of a different (and higher) rank, he was the last to put down the offering 11, but the first to taste the food. When the guest put down the offering, the host apologised, saying that the food was not worthy of such a tribute. When the guest was enjoying the viands, the host apologised for their being scanty and poor. When the host himself put down the pickle (for the guest), the guest himself removed it. When the members of a household ate together, not being host and guests, one of them removed the dishes; and the same was done When a company had eaten together. At all festival meals, the women (of the house) did not remove the dishes.

When eating dates, peaches, or plums, they did not cast the stones away (on the ground) 12. They put down the first slice of a melon as an offering, ate the other slices, and threw away the part by which they held it. When others were eating fruits with a man of rank, they ate them after him; cooked viands they ate before him 13. At meetings of rejoicing, if there were not some gift from the ruler, they did not congratulate one another; at meetings of sorrow 14, . . . .

If one had any toilsome business to do, he took them in his hand. If he were running, he thrust them in his breast 15.

When Confucius was eating with (the head of) the Kî family, he made no attempt to decline anything, but finished his meal with the rice and liquid added to it, without eating any of the flesh 16.

When the ruler sent (to an officer) the gift of a carriage and horses, he used them in going to give thanks for them. When the gift was of clothes, he wore them on the same occasion. (In the case of similar gifts to a commissioner from the king), until his (own) ruler had given him orders to use them, he did not dare at once to do so 17. When the ruler's gift reached him, he bowed his head to the ground with his two hands also, laying one of them over the other. A gift of liquor and flesh did not require the second expression of thanks (by the visit).

Whenever a gift was conferred on a man of rank, nothing was given to a small man on the same day.

In all cases of presenting offerings to a ruler, a Great officer sent his steward with them, and an ordinary officer went with them himself. In both cases they did obeisance twice, with their heads to the ground as they sent the things away; and again the steward and the officer did the same at the ruler's 18. If the offerings were of prepared food for the ruler, there were the accompaniments of ginger and other pungent vegetables, of a peach-wood and a sedge-broom 19. A Great officer dispensed with the broom, and the officer with the pungent vegetables. (The bearers) went in with all the articles to the cook. The Great officer did not go in person to make obeisance, lest the ruler should come to respond to him.

When a Great officer went (next day) to do obeisance for the ruler's gift, he retired after performing the ceremony. An officer, (doing the same), waited to receive the ruler's acknowledgment (of his visit), and then retired, bowing again as he did so; but (the ruler) did not respond to his obeisance.When a Great officer gave anything in person to an ordinary officer, the latter bowed on receiving it; and also went to his house to repeat the obeisance. He did not, however, wear the clothes (which might have been the gift), in going to make that obeisance.(In interchanges between) equals, if (the recipient) were in the house (when the gift arrived), he went and made his obeisance in the house (of the donor).

When any one presented an offering to his superior in rank, he did not dare to say directly that it was for him 20.An ordinary officer did not presume to receive the congratulations of a Great officer; but a Great officer of the lowest grade did so from one of the highest.When one was exchanging courtesies with another, if his father were alive, he would appeal to his authority; if the other gave him a gift, he would say, in making obeisance for it, that he did so for his father.

If the ceremony were not very great, the (beauty of the) dress was not concealed. In accordance with this, when the great robe of fur was worn, it was without the appendage of one of thin silk to display it, and when (the king) rode in the grand carriage, he did not bend forward to the cross-bar (to show his reverence for any one beyond the service he was engaged on) 21.

When a father's summons came to him, a son reverently obeyed it without any delay. Whatever work he had in hand, he laid aside. He ejected the meat that was in his mouth, and ran, not contenting himself with a measured, though rapid pace. When his parents were old and he had gone away, he did not go to a second place, nor delay his return beyond the time agreed on; when they were ailing, his looks and manner appeared troubled:--these were less-important observances of a filial son.

When his father died, he could not (bear to) read his books;--the touch of his hand seemed still to be on them. When his mother died, he could not (bear to) drink from the cups and bowls that she had used;--the breath of her mouth seemed still to be on them.

When a ruler, (visiting another ruler), was about to enter the gate, the attendant dusted the low post (at the middle of the threshold). The Great officers stood midway between the side-posts and this short post (behind their respective rulers). An officer, acting as an attendant, brushed the side-posts.(A Great officer) on a mission from another court, did not enter at the middle of (either half of) the gate, nor tread on the threshold. If he were come on public business, he entered on the west of the short post; if on his own business, on the east of it.

A ruler and a representative of the dead brought their feet together step by step when they walked; a Great officer stepped along, one foot after the other; an ordinary officer kept the length of his foot between his steps. In walking slowly, they all observed these rules. In walking rapidly, while they wished to push on (and did so), they were not allowed to alter the motion either of hands or feet. In turning their feet inwards or outwards, they did not lift them up, and the edge of the lower garment dragged along, like the water of a stream. In walking on the mats it was the same.When walking erect, (the body was yet bent, and) the chin projected like the eaves of a house, and their advance was straight as an arrow. When walking rapidly, the body had the appearance of rising constantly with an elevation of the feet. When carrying a tortoise-shell or (a symbol of) jade, they raised their toes and trailed their heels, presenting an appearance of carefulness.

In walking (on the road), the carriage of the body was straight and smart; in the ancestral temple, it was reverent and grave; in the court, it was exact and easy.

The carriage of a man of rank was easy, but somewhat slow;--grave and reserved, when he saw any one whom he wished to honour. He did not move his feet lightly, nor his hands irreverently. His eyes looked straightforward, and his mouth was kept quiet and composed. No sound from him broke the stillness, and his head was carried upright. His breath came without panting or stoppage, and his standing gave (the beholder) an impression of virtue. His looks were grave, and he sat like a personator of the dead 22. When at leisure and at ease, and in conversation, he looked mild and bland.

At all sacrifices, the bearing and appearance (of the worshippers) made it appear as if they saw those to whom they were sacrificing.

When engaged with the mourning rites, they had a wearied look, and an aspect of sorrow and unrest. Their eyes looked startled and dim, and their speech was drawling and low.

The carriage of a martialist was bold and daring; his speech had a tone of decision and command; his face was stern and determined; and his eyes were clear and bright.

He stood with an appearance of lowliness, but with no indication of subserviency. His head rose straight up from the centre of the neck. He stood (firm) as a mountain, and his movements were well timed. His body was well filled with the volume of his breath, which came forth powerfully like that of nature. His complexion showed (the beauty and strength of) a piece of jade 23.

When they spoke of themselves, the style of the son of Heaven was, 'I, the One man;' a chief of regions described himself as 'The strong minister of the son of Heaven;' the relation of a feudal lord expressed itself by 'So and So, the guardian of such and such a territory.' If the fief were on the borders, he used the style--'So and So, the minister in such and such a screen.' Among his equals and those below him, he called himself 'The man of little virtue.' The ruler of a small state called himself 'The orphan.' The officer who answered for him (at a higher court) also styled him so 24.

A Great officer of the highest grade (at his own court), called himself 'Your inferior minister;' (at another court), his attendant who answered for him, described him as 'The ancient of our poor ruler.' A Great officer of the lowest grade (at his own court), called himself by his name; (at another court), his attendant described him as 'Our unworthy Great officer.' The son and heir of a feudal prince (at his own court), called himself by his name; (at another court), his attendant described him as 'The rightful son of our unworthy ruler.'

A ruler's son (by an inferior lady) called himself 'Your minister, the shoot from the stock.' An (ordinary) officer styled himself 'Your minister, the fleet courier;' to a Great officer, he described himself as 'The outside commoner.' When a Great officer went on a mission about private affairs, a man of his private establishment went with him as his spokesman, and called him by his name.

When an officer belonging to the ruler's establishment acted (at another court for a Great officer), he spoke of him as 'Our unworthy Great officer,' or 'The ancient of our unworthy ruler.' When a Great officer went on any mission, it was the rule that he should have such an officer from the ruler's establishment with him, to answer for him.


1. See vol. xxvii, page 100, note 1.

2. They were on the right of the ruler, and turned their ears to the left to hear him.

3. That the more honourable visitor might not have the trouble of responding with a bow.

4. Kih and Kio were the fourth and third notes of the musical scale, corresponding to our D and B; Kung and Yü, the first and fifth, corresponding to G and E. See the Chinese Classics, vol. iii, p. 84, note.

5. Zhâi Khî is taken as another name for the Khû Zhze, Chinese Classics, vol. iii, pp. 317-318.

6. There were three pendants from the girdle:--the jade-stone in the middle, called the pendant of 'virtue;' and two others of useful things on the left and right, of which we shall read by and by. The subject of the first two sentences is said, correctly as I think, to be the heir-son of a ruler; while the last two have a more general application.

7. There were three pendants from the girdle:--the jade-stone in the middle, called the pendant of 'virtue;' and two others of useful things on the left and right, of which we shall read by and by. The subject of the first two sentences is said, correctly as I think, to be the heir-son of a ruler; while the last two have a more general application.

8. Or 'an ivory ring.'

9. One who had not yet been capped.

10. This paragraph seems to be out of place. Kang thought should follow the first sentence of paragraph 27 in the last part.

11. By way of thanksgiving to the father of Cookery.

12. Compare vol. xxvii, page 81, paragraph 62.

13. Fruits were the productions of nature, and there could be no poison in them. Cooked food might have been tampered with, and these in attendance on a superior man first tasted it as a precaution for his safety.

14. The conclusion is evidently lost.

15. A mistaken and meaningless repetition of part of paragraph 11.

16. To express, it is supposed, his dissatisfaction with some want of courtesy in his host.

17. This sentence is perplexing, and there are different views in interpreting it. I have followed Kang Hsüan.

18. This translation seems to make too much out of the text; but it is after Khung Ying-tâ, Khan Hâo, and others.

19. Such presents might decompose or become offensive, and therefore these accompaniments were sent with them.

20. He would say, for instance, that it was for some member of his household.

21. There are only fifteen characters in this paragraph, nor is there any intricacy in its structure, but few passages in the collection perplex a translator more. If we leave out the negatives in the former sentence, the meaning becomes clear. The grand carriage and grand fur-robe were used at the greatest of all ceremonies, the solstitial sacrifice to Heaven, which itself so occupied the mind of the sovereign that he was supposed to think of nothing else. The paragraph might have had a more appropriate place in the seventh Book or the ninth.

22. See vol. xxvii, page 62, paragraph 6, and note 2.

23. On the translation of this, and many of the paragraphs immediately preceding, Callery says:--'The Chinese text contains dissyllabic expressions very difficult to translate, because they are a sort of onomatopœias, which have nothing in common with the nature of the things to which they are applied. We could do nothing better with them than adopt the sense given by the commentators.' But these binomial combinations, which are often repetitions Of the same character, are only onomatopoietic in the sense in which all words, sensuously descriptive at first, are applied by the mind to express its own concepts; metaphorical rather than onomatopoietic. They are very common in the Shih, or Book of Poetry, and in all passionate, descriptive composition. So it is in other languages as well as Chinese.

24. So, most commentators; but this last sentence is not clear.

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