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Title: “An Imbalance of Joy and Sorrow” 苦樂不均

Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Page Number: 26

Caption Translation: The spring floods had not yet risen, so the Qinhuai river in Nanjing was clear and shallow. Lantern boats and pleasure boats arrived packed together;, the sounds of the panpipe and double flute answered each other across the river playing songs like “Flowers of the Locust Imperial Harem.” The other day a manure boat planned to take advantage of the dusk to go out a pass in the western part of the river. Hoping to arrive early, they put up sail and headed east, but they unexpectedly sailed to “Peach Leaf Crossing” where suddenly leisure boats crowded and squeezed them. The boats unexpectedly crisscrossed each other like canine’s teeth and placed the manure boat in a dilemma. The boat men were absorbed in using all their energy in their struggle. They did not yet have the leisure to think and the boat was at carrying capacity, when at once the boat shook and tipped over. The front and back of its cabin filled full of water and the boat promptly sank. Yet, although the boatmen drowned they will be enlightened and soon after be able to step onto the bank of another life. So there is still good fortune in the midst of bad.

Translator: Paul Vierthaler,
revised by Peter C. Perdue
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Caption Text: 春水未生, 秦淮清淺, 燈船畫舸, 鱗次來遊, 簫管之聲, 已與隔江玉樹後庭花相應答。 前日有一糞草船, 思趁晚照出水西關, 以便來早挂帆東下, 不意行至桃葉渡, 忽被遊船擁擠, 居然犬牙相錯, 進退兩難。 舟子只顧用力掙扎, 未暇慮及船身載重, 纔一欹側, 汩汩者前後艙已灌滿, 立即沈下。 人雖滅頂而覺岸旋登, 尚爲不幸中之大幸耳。

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Title: “An Earthquake in England” 英國地震

Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Page Number: 27

Caption Translation: In the east part of England on the twenty seventh day of the third month at nine thirty in the morning an earthquake hit. It was particularly strong in Ipswich and Colchester. When it started the local bells began to make noise, and presently the doors shook and things within homes flew around. There was one large church in Colchester which had a tower fifteen zhang [50 meters] tall which suddenly began to lean and then collapsed. The church broke into fine powder which covered many local residents. After a short while, people were crying and running wildly in a panic to avoid the debris. As it was, it is still fortunate that although there were innumerable people who received wounds on that day, only a small child and a woman were killed by the earthquake. Were it to happen in the dark of night, this disaster probably would have been even more fierce, but even this one was still an extreme disaster.

Translator: Paul Vierthaler,
revised by Peter C. Perdue
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Caption Text: 英國東邊地方於三月廿七日早九點半鐘地震其伊潑蘇依出與戈吉思德兩 爲尤甚焉 始則鐘鐸錚然作響, 俄而門戶震撼器皿。 徙移戈吉思德有大禮拜堂一所, 有塔高十五丈, 突然傾塌禮拜堂碎成齏粉, 居民亦覆壓不少。 一時奔避倉皇號哭徧野然猶幸在日間受傷之人雖不計其數而震死者則僅一小孩一婦人而已。 設在黑夜, 其禍當更有烈者, 然亦非常之灾已

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Title: “Losing your Fortune and your Wife” 人財兩失

Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Page Number: 28, 29

Caption Translation: Eighty or ninety li from Nanjing, there is a small lake, the upper part of which joins the mouth of the Ding river at Gaochun, while below it meets Danyang at Tai lake. It is truly a major thoroughfare for boats, not at all a desolate marshland. The people who live there from time to time hear the sound of guns across the lake, but as it does not concern them, they ignore it. About one-half li south of the lake, there lived a certain Mr. Guo, who came from Chongming. First, he cleared the flooded land on the banks of the lake. In the fall he gathered golden grain, in the winter he picked jade reeds, and in his leisure time sometimes he would tie a net and fish. He carried to the market various kinds of long neck gourds and extra toe tooth ginger. Day by day he accumulated wealth and his family was well off.




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In his thirties, he married a quite young and handsome woman, who was as strong as Meng Guang [the wife of Liang Hong, a farmer of the Eastern Han period]. She was self-willed and independent [like a wife in a mirror amongst the green lotus leafs, and girl in a box amongst yellow bamboo,] but he still endured her assertiveness gracefully. They were not like a common peasant family. One day he met a very strong and brave Mr. A at the market, who also claimed to be from Chongming. They chatted with each other about their fellow villagers, and enjoyed drinking and eating together. Mr. A had heard Guo had money and wanted to hire a farm laborer, so he agreed to hire himself out. Guo admired his honesty, so they went home together. Guo began calling him "younger brother," and when they arrived at Guo’s kitchen he even told Mr. A to treat his wife as a relative [elder brother’s wife].

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The next day Mr. A asked to go to the farm, and Guo point by point instructed him. Mr. A left before dawn and came back at night; he worked much harder than the typical farmhand. Guo regretted that it had taken him so long to find a person like Mr. A. Guo at the same time simply relaxed [looked up at apricots and gazed at the cattails], and made his plans [looked at the dusk to foretell the day]. He gave responsibility entirely to Mr. A. Guo himself was at the market from morning to dusk, where he sought profits in fish and salt, and lent money, planning to use the interest to build up a fortune. At the market there was a wily and cunning person who backed him. Guo deeply trusted him and resided in his home. Sometimes Guo wouldn’t return to his own home for several days, sometimes he would return once every several days, and he stayed home only for a short time.


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He was too busy to ask about his family’s livelihood, regarding his own house as only an inn. He didn’t realize that Mr. A was running his household and long ago had begun to live inside of Guo’s house. The sound of snoring was loud from his brother’s long and narrow bed, for he was doing no less than eating Guo’s meat and sleeping in his sheets. One day Guo suddenly returned at dusk, and they were caught off guard. He saw that his wife and Mr. A were terrified, and he became suspicious. As he carefully observed his wife, he found that she had an aversion for him and thus his suspicions increased.

His wife knew that Guo would ask his unwanted guest to leave, so she addressed Mr. A saying, “You must go, so that my husband will not catch me.” Probably the wife knew that Mr. A was a forest outlaw, and had a lair where he sought refuge, but he had concealed himself in his identity as a laborer. Since their relationship was already exposed , she ordered him to quickly plot to allow her to remain an intact tile, and to not smash the mirror. But the two loved each other so much that they swore to stay together until their hair turned white.
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At this point Mr. A falsely demanded money from Guo, and bickered with him on a pretext. Furthermore, he blamed Guo’s wife numerous times and scolded her severely, and with great resentment stormed out the gate. Guo did not suspect his wife, and treated her as before. His wife advised Guo to loan money and rent land to people to increase his worth. For three years he would collect interest, and he could avoid hiring laborers. She also encouraged Guo to take all the shop took in and store it inside his own “imperial storehouse,” to keep his money safely at home. She also persuaded Guo to stay at home and exercise restraint for the sake of his family. Guo saw this plan as particularly attractive, and was quite pleased with himself. Two months later, Mr. A suddenly anchored a small boat on the side of the lake, and the people along the lake said many times that they thought they knew him. Mr. A also acted like a swallow returning home. Towards evening A went directly to Guo’s residence. He looked down through a window and saw Guo eating in the courtyard.

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Then he went around to the kitchen, telling Mrs. Guo what he was up to. Guo’s wife both was surprised and consoled. She picked up a desk and put in front of Guo, laughed and said “Today I have reached the level of Liang Hong’s wife.” Night was already half over, and Mr. A ordered six or seven people to break down the door. They entered, tied Guo to a pillar, locked his hands behind his back, and used cotton to stuff his mouth. Mr. A removed all of Gu’s possessions and then shouldered Guo’s wife and left saying “we won't trouble you to see us off.” He then quickly raised anchor and sailed away. The sky had just brightened when the neighbors began to come and look at each other. They feared that the thief had confederates who prohibited them from coming and going, therefore no one dared to open a door and assist his neighbor. When Guo was released and he attended to his house he saw that there was nothing left inside. He burst into loud sobbing and hated himself. As before he became a poor man who plowed the beach.

Translator: Paul Vierthaler,
revised by Peter C. Perdue
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Caption Text: 距金陵八九十里, 與句容相接之處, 有小湖焉, 上承高淳定浦, 下接丹陽太湖, 實帆檣之孔道, 非荒汀冷港可比。 居人時聞湖中有鎗火聲, 然以事不干己, 姑置之。 湖之南半里許, 有郭某者, 崇明人, 初以耕湖濱漲灘爲業, 黃收金粟, 紅摘玉蘆, 暇或結網捕魚, 雜長頸瓠, 跂牙薑, 相與擔貨於市, 日獲其利, 家遂康。 自以三十許人, 娶婦頗少艾, 力能舉孟光之許, 然青荷中婦鏡, 黃竹女兒箱, 尚堪顧影翩翩, 不似農家塵俗物也。 一日, 與孔武有力之某甲相遇於市, 自稱亦崇眀人, 彼此敘鄉誼, 酬飲食, 聞郭有錢鎛之役, 願爲傭。 郭貪其直廉, 引與俱歸, 呼之曰弟, 即爨下而嫂其妻。 次日, 甲請行隴畝, 郭一一指示之。 甲果戴星出入, 辛苦異於常傭。 郭轉恨得甲晚。 久之, 郭並瞻杏望蒲, 視昏戒旦, 悉諉諸甲, 己則昕夕於市, 逐魚鹽, 權子母, 思以什一起家。 市上有黠者爲之主, 郭深信之, 舍其家, 或數日不歸, 或數日一歸, 歸亦忽忽, 不暇問家計, 視家如傳舍, 不知甲自操家政, 早已移居於內, 鼾睡乃兄之榻, 不啻食其肉而寢其皮矣。 一日郭, 忽乘暮歸, 不爲備, 見妻與甲有皇遽狀, 心疑之, 徐察婦, 婦力諱, 然心終不釋。 婦恐其下逐客令也, 因謂甲曰:子速去, 毋令彼牢籠我也。 蓋婦諗知甲爲綠林之豪, 有巢穴, 以避禍而隱於傭, 事已解, 故令其速謀瓦全, 毋爲鏡破。

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兩人之相期白首者, 非一日矣。 至是, 甲偽以索貲, 與郭口角, 且數郭妻而痛罵之, 恨恨出門。 郭果不疑其妻, 待之如初。 妻又勸郭貸租於人孕其值, 三年不取息, 可免置傭工者;又勸郭將肆中所入, 藏之內府, 不以太阿倒持於人;又勸郭就家中宿, 自持門戶。 郭見其計殊切實, 頗自喜。 越兩月, 甲忽搖扁舟泊湖側, 湖上人多語以似曾相識者, 甲亦以故燕歸來自認。 天將晚, 直詣郭宅, 伏牖下, 見郭據中庭方食, 即繞至爨下, 與郭妻語所以。 妻且驚且慰, 舉案置郭前, 笑謂曰:“今日方得爲梁鴻妻矣。 ”夜既半, 甲率六七人破門入, 縛郭反接於柱, 以絮塞其口, 搬物既盡, 始負其妻而出, 且謂曰:“不勞君送。 ”急解纜矣。 天既明, 鄰人始來相視, 蓋盜以一人徧號於左右, 禁其出入, 故鄰佑無一人敢啟扉者。 郭得釋, 顧家中別無一長物, 放聲大哭, 自恨依然一耕灘窮漢也。

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Title: “Unbearable to Recall” 不堪回首

Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Page Number: 30

Caption Translation: Assistant Subofficials originally were insignificant members of the bureaucracy. But from their own point of view, they led a life of honor, and they did not associate with common people. This is quite different from what I have I heard. Those in Shanghai [the foreigners' grounds] who pull rickshaws suffer bitterness and lowliness. They are hoodlums and loafers, completely lacking a means of livelihood. They take a whole day to obtain several pieces of cash, which is just a little bit better than begging on the street. Even in the rain and the broiling heat, on lengthy roads deep into the night, they rush and pursue each other vying to be first, and they willingly share privation with donkeys and horses. There is no reason to envy their life.
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Who could imagine that someone who once held a post in Jiangsu as a police chief could fall down so far as to enter their ranks? The other day in the middle of Stone Road a person hailed a rickshaw driver. In response to his call, a driver came, but before he could ask the price, the driver immediately ran away blushing with shame. Realizing that the person pulling the cart was the former police chief, and the person hiring the rickshaw was a petty official in his yamen, how could he not be fearful? The qingfu [an insect from ancient texts] flies and does not again return. In the midst of thousands of carts rushing about, and I don’t know how many rich people wearing lavish clothes, does the lowly official cowering in fear still remember the days when ritual processions celebrated his arrival?

Translator: Paul Vierthaler,
revised by Peter C. Perdue

Caption Text: 佐貳雜職, 本是朝廷不甚愛惜之官, 然自其本身視之, 則固儼然一命之榮, 不與齊民爲伍矣, 乃以余所聞則大不然。 洋塲之拉東洋車者, 至苦, 亦至賤也。 流氓游手, 生計毫無, 借此日獲數文錢, 差勝沿階托缽, 放雖雨淋日炙, 路遠宵深, 而馳逐爭先, 甘與驢馬同其困苦者。 誠以自視其身, 本無足貴耳, 不謂曾任江蘇實缺巡檢某而亦淪落於其中也。 日前, 石路中有人僱東洋車, 車夫應聲至, 未及問價, 即忸怩遁去, 乃知拖車者爲某巡檢, 而僱車者即其衙門當差者也, 可不畏歟。 吁, 青蚨飛去不復來歸, 數千輛軋軋奔波不知幾許紈絝也, 然如某佐襍者, 鳩形瑟縮, 猶憶及騶導傳呼日耶。

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Title: “A Sick Man Exchanges a Leg” 病中易腿

Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Page Number: 31

Caption Translation: Mr. A of Hangzhou’s Zhangqing road made tinfoil for a living. In recent years he suffered misfortunes: he was unemployed and rested at home. He also contracted a lingering illness, gradually becoming emaciated and weak. He groaned from the midst of his bedding, angry and feeble, and barely survived one breath at a time. One day after lighting a lamp, his wife and daughter went downstairs to bring a late meal. Only a small light sat across from him; his miserable thoughts were unending. He intended to close his eyes to fall asleep, but he was startled when a a short, black, fat man came straight into his bedroom, carrying a leg on his shoulder. He said “I am from beyond Qingbo gate, and I have come to exchange this with you.” Without a word, he took out a knife and chopped off Mr. A's leg, then grafted the leg he was carrying in its place. Mr. A was dumbstruck with fear, so his wife and daughter suspected there might be another reason. They urgently ran to the head of the stairs and examined him closely.

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By bright candlelight, they saw that the size of his two legs was as far apart as sky and sea. Isn't it marvelous! One person’s vitality quickly declined, and a ghost relied upon this to come honor him. We cannot say that it is logically impossible. Otherwise, there really is no explanation for him to come holding a leg, changing the leg and then leaving, while at the same time telling them he was from outside Qingbo gate. What could he gain from such righteous behavior? We record this as material for study by scientific researchers.

Translator: Paul Vierthale,
revised by Peter C. Perdue

Caption Text: 杭城長慶街某甲, 以箔爲業。 年來命途乖舛, 賦閑家居。 邇日, 又抱沉痾, 漸就羸瘠, 呻吟床褥間, 生氣奄奄, 僅存一息。 一日上燈後, 妻女下樓用晚膳, 短檠獨對, 無限感懷。 意似合眼睡去, 恍惚有人直達臥室。 視之, 一矮漢, 黑而肥, 肩負一腿, 云:從清波門外來, 與君掉換。 不俟問故, 即出刀襲其左者, 而以負來之腿相與拍合, 不啻移花接木也。 某懼極聲嘶, 妻女疑有他故。 亟奔樓頭, 備詢巔末, 秉燭審視, 而兩腿之巨細判若天淵, 顧不奇哉!夫人精爽一衰, 鬼物憑而爲崇, 不必斥爲事理之所必無, 特無解於持一腿來, 易一腿去, 並告以清波門外來, 於義何所取也?姑存之, 以質世之博物君子。

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Title: “Dogs and Horses Reporting to the Master” 犬馬報主

Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Page Number: 32, 33

Caption Translation: Dogs and horses who repaid their masters' kindness.

Liu Ling and Li Bo were famous scholar-poets who indulged heavily in wine. Mr. A of Korea had a similar experience. One day he drank until he was dead drunk. He walked past Maodong road where he collapsed like Jade Mountain, whereupon he fell sound asleep in the midst of a quagmire. This place was in a remote slum. There were few people walking about, there were only several small children playing games. Unexpectedly there suddenly came a number of fierce dogs. They surrounded him, and they were ready to bite him, satiating themselves on this old glutton. He was on the brink of death, but before long another dog came along, glaring fiercely and barking at the pack. The whole pack of dogs did not dare confront this dog, so they all fled. Mr. A then woke up and the children had to tell him what had happened. He realized that the dog who had come last was a dog reared at Mr. A’s home. Now and then, when someone wants to rear a good dog he will pass on this story.




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Not even a few days later there was the event of the horse saviors. In a certain area outside the eastern city there was a certain man who took pasturing horses as his occupation. Although he was not the reincarnation of Bo Le [A Zhou man who could judge horses], he tethered them when it was time and fed them when it was time, therefore the horses also recognized him. He and his family did quite well. One night two thieves with weapons broke into his house. They searched it and ransacked it, tying up his possessions in bundles which they carried on their shoulders. Suddenly the horses escaped from the stable, neighing endlessly, and battled with the thieves. The horseman snapped awake from his dream, threw on his clothes, and got up to look. He saw that one thief had already been kicked to the ground, and the other thief was retreating in fright. They were later captured. At daybreak he sent them under guard with officials from the yamen, where they were put on trial.

These two events were only separated by several days and are both authentic. Just as people who receive their salaries should be loyal to their masters,  animals are the same. How can it be that people are inferior to domestic animals?  

Translator: Paul Vierthaler,
revised by Peter C. Perdue

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Caption Text: 李白哦詩, 名士襟期往往以麴櫱為性命, 乃朝鮮之某甲有同嗜焉。 一日飲至酩酊, 行經毛洞街玉山頹矣。 遂酣眠於泥潦中, 其地僻處窮巷, 行人稀少, 只有數小孩在彼嬉戲。 不料突來數惡犬, 繞其身, 勢將狂噬, 饜彼老饕。 蓋岌岌乎瀕於危殆矣。 無何復來一犬, 耽耽怒視大肆咆哮, 衆犬力不敵, 相率奔竄, 而某甲遂為驚醒, 小兒輩近前告語始知, 後來之犬乃某甲家所豢之犬也。 時有好事者為作義犬歌以傳之。 不數日而有馬救主一事出焉。 東城外某村某甲以牧馬為業。 雖非伯樂復生, 而維縶有時, 芻秣有候, 以故馬亦引為知已。 而家道遂康。 一夜有二偷兒持械入室, 大恣搜掠, 已將財物捆縛欲負之而去。 忽馬従厩中逸出, 嘶聲不已, 與盜相持。 某従夢中警覺, 披衣起視, 則見一盜已被踢倒, 一盜皇遽欲遁, 遂被獲住。 天明解送有司衙門辨理。 二事相隔止數日, 皆確鑿。 夫食人祿者忠人事, 物類且然, 可以人而不如畜乎。

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“An Imbalance of Joy and Sorrow” 苦樂不均 (page 26)
1884  [dz_v01_028]MIT Visualizing Cultures
“An Earthquake in England” 英國地震 (page 27)
1884  [dz_v01_029]
MIT Visualizing Cultures
“Losing your Fortune and your Wife” 人財兩失 (pages 28 & 29)
1884  [dz_v01_030] [dz_v01_031]

MIT Visualizing Cultures
“Unbearable to Recall” 不堪回首 (page 30)
1884  [dz_v01_032]MIT Visualizing Cultures
“A Sick Man Exchanges a Leg” 病中易腿 (page 31)
1884  [dz_v01_033]MIT Visualizing Cultures
“Dogs and Horses Reporting to the Master” 犬馬報主 (pages 32 & 33)
1884  [dz_v01_034] [dz_v01_035]MIT Visualizing Cultures
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