• Collation in Early Imperial China: From Administrative Procedure to Philological Tool

    Author(s):
    Max Jakob Fölster (see profile) , Thies Staack
    Date:
    2021
    Item Type:
    Book chapter
    Tag(s):
    Chinese history, philology, sinology, Han dynasty, History of philology
    Permanent URL:
    https://doi.org/10.17613/n3db-pn19
    Abstract:
    The origins of 'textual criticism' in China are usually traced back to Liu Xiang 劉向 (79-8 BCE), who is credited with the invention of philological tools, especially 'collation' (jiaochou 校讎). However, scholars have also noted that the terms jiao 校 and chou 讎 occur in earlier sources, especially manuscripts with legal or administrative texts. Surveying evidence on the mentioned collation techniques from received literature and from manuscripts dating to the late third and early second century BCE, this paper lays bare the administrative roots of later philological tools. It argues that Liu Xiang adopted established methods and terminology from the administrative and legal sphere that had been around for at least 200 years.
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    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    2 months ago
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