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When wearing the unhemmed sackcloth (for a father), (the son) tied up his hair with a hempen (band), and also when wearing it for a mother. When he exchanged this band for the cincture (in the case of mourning for his mother) 1, this was made of linen cloth.(A wife) 2, when wearing the (one year's mourning) of sackcloth with the edges even, had the girdle (of the same), and the inferior hair-pin (of hazel-wood), and wore these to the end of the mourning.

(Ordinarily) men wore the cap, and women the hair-pin; (in mourning) men wore the cincture, and women the same after the female fashion. The idea was (simply) to maintain in this way a distinction between them 3.

The dark-coloured staff was of bamboo; that pared and fashioned (at the end) was of eleococca wood 4.

When the grandfather was dead, and afterwards (the grandson) had to go into mourning for his grandmother, he, being the representative of the family (through the death of his father), did so for three years.

The eldest son, (at the mourning rites) for his father or mother, (before bowing to a visitor who had come to condole with him), first laid his forehead to the ground (as an expression of his sorrow).When a Great officer came to condole (with an ordinary officer), though it might be (only) in a case of the three months' mourning, (the latter first) laid his forehead to the ground 5.A wife, at the rites for her husband or eldest son, bowed her head to the ground before she saluted a visitor; but in mourning for others, she did not do so 6.

The man employed to preside (at the mourning rites) was required to be of the same surname (as the deceased parent); the wife so employed, of a different surname 7.

The son who was his father's successor (as now head of the family) did not wear mourning for his mother who had been divorced.

In counting kindred (and the mourning to be worn of them), the three closest degrees become expanded into five, and those five again into nine. The mourning diminished as the degrees ascended or descended, and the collateral branches also were correspondingly less mourned for; and the mourning for kindred thus came to an end 8.

At the great royal sacrifice to all ancestors, the first place was given to him from whom the founder of the line sprang, and that founder had the place of assessor to him. There came thus to be established four ancestral shrines 9. In the case of a son by another than the queen coming to be king, the same course was observed.

When a son other than (the eldest) became the ancestor (of a branch of the same line), his successor was its Honoured Head, and he who followed him (in the line) was its smaller Honoured Head. After five generations there was a change again of the Honoured Head; but all in continuation of the High Ancestor.

Hence the removal of the ancestor took place high up (in the line), and the change of the Honoured Head low down (in it). Because they honoured the ancestor, they reverenced the Honoured Head; their reverencing the Honoured Head was the way in which they expressed the honour which they paid to the ancestor and his immediate successor 10.

That any other son but the eldest did not sacrifice to his grandfather showed that (only he was in the direct line from) the Honoured Head (of their branch of the family). So, no son but he wore the (three years) unhemmed sackcloth for his eldest son, because the eldest son of no other continued (the direct line) of the grandfather and father 11.

None of the other sons sacrificed to a son (of his own) who had died prematurely, or one who had left no posterity. (The tablet of) such an one was placed along with that of his grandfather, and shared in the offerings made to him.

Nor could any of them sacrifice to their father; showing that (the eldest son was the representative of) the Honoured Head.

(In the distinctions of the mourning) for the kindred who are the nearest, the honoured ones to whom honour is paid, the elders who are venerated for their age, and as the different tributes to males and females; there are seen the greatest manifestations of the course which is right for men.

Where mourning would be worn from one's relation with another for parties simply on the ground of that affinity, when that other was dead, the mourning ceased. Where it would have been worn for them on the ground of consanguinity, even though that other were dead, it was still worn 12.When a concubine had followed a ruler's wife to the harem, and the wife came to be divorced, the concubine, (following her out of the harem), did not wear mourning for her son 13.

According to the rules, no one but the king offered the united sacrifice to all ancestors 14.

The heir-son (of the king or a feudal lord) did not diminish the mourning for the parents of his wife. For his wife he wore the mourning which the eldest and rightful son of a Great officer did for his 15.

When the father was an officer, and the son came to be king or a feudal prince, the father was sacrificed to with the rites of a king or a lord; but the personator wore the dress of an officer. When the father had been the son of Heaven, or a feudal lord, and the son was (only) an officer, the father was sacrificed to with the rites of an officer, but his personator wore only the dress of an officer 16.

If a wife were divorced while wearing the mourning (for her father or mother-in-law), she put it off. If the thing took place while she was wearing the mourning for her own parents, and before she had completed the first year's mourning, she continued to wear it for the three years; but if that term had been completed, she did not resume the mourning.If she were called back before the completion of the year, she wore it to the end of that term; but if that term had been completed before she was called back, she went on wearing it to the regular term of mourning for parents.

The mourning which lasted for two complete years was (held to be) for three years; and that which lasted for one complete year for two years 17. The mourning for nine months and that for seven months 18 was held to be for three seasons; that for five months for two; and that for three months for one. Hence the sacrifice at the end of the completed year was according to the prescribed rule; but the putting off the mourning (or a part of it) then was the course (prompted by natural feeling). The sacrifice was not on account of the putting off of the mourning 19.

When the interment (for some reason) did not take place till after the three years, it was the rule that the two sacrifices (proper at the end of the first and second years) should then be offered. Between them, but not all at the same time, the mourning was put off 20.

If a relative who had himself to wear only the nine months' mourning for the deceased took the direction of the mourning rites in the case of any who must continue their mourning for three years, it was the rule that he should offer for them the two annual terminal sacrifices. If one who was merely a friend took that direction, he only offered the sacrifice of Repose, and that at the placing of the tablet in the shrine 21.

When the concubine of an officer had a son, he wore the three months' mourning for her. If she had no son, he did not do so 22.

When one had been born (in another state), and had had no intercourse with his grand-uncles and aunts, uncles and cousins, and his father, on hearing of the death of any of them, proceeded to wear mourning, he did not do so.

If one did not (through being abroad) hear of the death of his ruler's father or mother, wife or eldest son, till the ruler had put off his mourning, he did not proceed to wear any.

If it were a case, however, where the mourning was reduced to that of three months, he wore it 23.

(Small) servants in attendance on the ruler, (who had followed him abroad), when he assumed mourning (on his return, for relatives who had died when he was away), also put it on. Other and (higher officers in his train) also did so; but if the proper term for the mourning in the case were past, they did not do so. (Those who had remained at home), though the ruler could not know of their doing so, had worn the (regular) mourning.


1. This was done after the slighter dressing of the corpse. The cincture (wan,免) is mentioned in the first paragraph of the Than Kung (vol. xxvii, page 120). The hempen band being removed, one of linen cloth, about the breadth of which there are different accounts, was put round the hair on the crown, taken forward to the forehead, there crossed, taken back again, and knotted at the back of the hair.

2. The text does not mention 'the wife' here; but a comparison of different passages shows that this sentence is only applicable to her.

3. Anciently, it is said, there was no distinction between these two cinctures, but in the name. There probably came to be some difference between them; but what it was I cannot discover.

4. This is found also in the Î Lî, XXXII, 5; but the interpretation there is as difficult as here. The translation of the first character (苴, zhü) by 'dark-coloured' is from Khung Ying-tâ. The paring away the end of the dryandria branch was to make it square. The round bamboo was carried in mourning for a father, and was supposed to symbolise heaven; the other was carried in mourning for a mother, and its square end symbolised earth. What heaven and earth were to nature that the father and mother were to a child. I can make nothing more or better of the passage.

5. We do not see how this instance coheres with the former one; nor why the two are brought together.

6. The 'others,' according to Kang, must be understood of her own parents. She was now identified with a family of another surname; and her husband's relatives were more to her than her own.

7. The son and his wife who should have presided are supposed to be dead. The wife elected for the office would be the wife of some other member of the family, herself therefore of a different surname.

8. The three closest degrees are 'father, son, and son's son.' Add the grandfather and grandson (counting from the son), and we have five; great-grandfather and great-grandson (here omitted), and we have seven. Then great-great-grandfather and great-great-grandson, make nine; and the circle of kindred, for whom mourning should be worn, is complete. See Appendix, Book II, vol. xxvii.

9. This statement about the four shrines has given occasion to much writing.

10. The subject imperfectly described in these two paragraphs,--the manner in which a family, ever lengthening its line and multiplying its numbers, was divided into collateral branches, will come before the reader again in the next Book.

11. It is difficult to catch exactly the thought in the writer of these, and several of the adjacent, sentences. Even the native critics, down to the Khien-lung editors, seem to experience the difficulty.

12. Khung Ying-tâ specifies six cases coming under the former of these cases, and four under the second. It is not necessary to set them forth. The Khien-lung editors say that the paragraph has reference only to the practice of the officer; for a Great officer did not wear mourning either for his wife or mother's kin.

13. This concubine would be either of the near relatives of the wife, who had gone with her on her marriage.

14. This paragraph is out of place. It should have formed part, probably, of paragraph 9.

15. The sackcloth for one year, without carrying the staff.

16. Both the cases in this paragraph can hardly be taken as anything more than hypothetical. On the concluding statement, the Khien-lung editors ask how the robes of a king could be exhibited in the ancestral temple of an officer.

17. See the introduction on Book XXXV, vol. xxvii, page 49.

18. We have not met before with this mourning term of seven months. It occurs in the Î Lî, Book XXIV, 6, as to be worn for those who had died in the second degree of prematurity between the age of twelve and fifteen inclusive.

19. 'This remark is made by the compiler,' say the Khien-lung editors, 'to guard against the sudden abandonment of their grief by the mourners, as if they had done with the deceased when the mourning was concluded.'

20. After the first, it is said, men put off the mourning headband, and women that of the girdle. After the second they both put off their sackcloth.

21. Because of the youth of the son, or of some other reason existing in the case. The director would himself be a cousin.

22. But Great officers wore the three months' mourning for the relatives who had accompanied their wives to the harem, though they might have had no son. No such relatives accompanied the wife of an officer.

23. This, it is supposed, should follow paragraph 25. There are doubts as to the interpretation of it.

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