Read e-book online A Garden of Marvels: Tales of Wonder from Early Medieval PDF

By Robert Ford Campany

ISBN-10: 0824853490

ISBN-13: 9780824853495

Between three hundred and six hundred C.E., chinese language writers compiled hundreds of thousands of bills of the unusual and the intense. a few defined bizarre spirits, customs, and wildlife in far-off lands. a few depicted members of bizarre non secular or ethical success. yet such a lot instructed of standard people’s encounters with ghosts, demons, or gods; sojourns within the land of the useless; eerily major desires; and uncannily exact premonitions. the choice of such tales provided the following offers an pleasing advent to early medieval chinese language storytelling and opens a doorway to the enchanted international of idea, tradition, and non secular trust of that period. referred to as zhiguai, or “accounts of anomalies,” they communicate greatly approximately how humans observed the cosmos and their position in it. The stories have been circulated simply because they have been unique but additionally simply because their compilers intended to rfile the mysterious workings of spirits, the wonders of unique locations, and the character of the afterlife.

A number of greater than 200 stories, A backyard of Marvels deals an authoritative but available creation to zhiguai writings, relatively these by no means sooner than translated or safely researched. This quantity will most likely locate its solution to bedside tables in addition to into study rooms and libraries, simply as collections of zhiguai did in early medieval times.

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Extra resources for A Garden of Marvels: Tales of Wonder from Early Medieval China

Sample text

To take the Â�triple refuge was to declare reliance on the Buddha, on his teachings, and on the Buddhist community. ‖Kang Senghui, a famous monk from Sogdia who arrived at the Wu capital Jianye from the southern outpost of Jiaozhi (modern Hanoi in northern Vietnam) in 247 and was among the earliest wave of translators of Buddhist scriptures into Chinese. See Zürcher, The Buddhist Conquest of China, 51–54. 4â•…â•… Ji ng yi j i (I t em 2 ) [3] During the Jin era there was a shrine* beside the river in Yangzhou, where the god of the lake was excessively severe and wicked.

Even in cases where these publications are out of print or otherÂ�wise hard to obtain, I have not included items from these texts Â�here. In chronological order by date of the Chinese text, they include the following:* 1. Itinerary of Mountains and Waterways (Shanhai jing 山海經, often rendered Classic of Mountains and Seas). This early,† large (837 items), geoÂ�graphÂ�iÂ�cally arranged compendium of wonders is a Â�father text of the genre. ‡ Its entries do not assume the shape of narratives involving Â�human pro- *Here I do not include hagiographic and biographical texts.

4â•…â•… Ji ng yi j i (I t em 2 ) [3] During the Jin era there was a shrine* beside the river in Yangzhou, where the god of the lake was excessively severe and wicked. At that time a monk named Fazang visited there. He was skilled at using mantras and always achieved good results in avoiding evil influences. There was also a younger monk who was learning from him how to chant spells and sutras. Over the years he had made considerable progress, so he, too, was able to subdue all sorts of evil beings.

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A Garden of Marvels: Tales of Wonder from Early Medieval China by Robert Ford Campany


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