Wengu zhixin Table of content

Shi Jing

Shi Jing Introduction Table of content – The Book of Odes

The oldest collection of Chinese poetry, more than three hundred songs, odes and hymns. Tr. Legge (en) and Granet (fr, incomplete).

Lun Yu

Lun Yu Introduction Table of content – The Analects of Confucius

The Master discusses with his disciples and unveil his preoccupations with society. Tr. Legge (en), Lau (en) and Couvreur (fr).

Daxue Introduction Table of content – The Great Learning

Confucean thought summarized for the Prince. Tr. Legge (en), Pauthier (fr), Bog (fr).

Zhongyong Introduction Table of content – The Doctrine of the Mean

Confucius' grandson comments about the Way and human nature. Tr. Legge (en)

San Zi Jing Introduction Table of content – The Three-Character Classic

A textbook helpfull to start learning Classic Chinese. Tr. Giles (en) and Deverge (fr).

Yi Jing

Yi Jing Introduction Table of content – I Ching, the Book of Changes

This famous system of 64 hexagrams plus their commentaries and trans­for­mations is at the root of Chinese thought. Tr. Wilhelm (en, fr).

Dao De Jing

Dao De Jing Introduction Table of content – The Way and Its Power

The naturalist, individualist and politic doctrine of Lao-tse exhibited in 81 poetic and obscure texts. Tr. Waley (en), Lau (en), Julien (fr) and Wilhelm (de).

Tang Shi

Tang Shi Introduction Table of content – 300 Tang poems

An anthology of 320 poems. Discover Chinese poetry in its golden age and some of the greatest Chinese poets. Tr. by Bynner (en).

Sun Zi

Sun Zi Introduction Table of content – The Art of War

Chinese strategy explained : know yourself and the ennemy, use deception, spies, and "win with ease". Tr. Giles (en, annotated) and Amiot (fr).

36 Ji Introduction Table of content – Thirty-Six Strategies

A recently uncovered notebook of 36 proverbs commented as military tactics that helps dealing with conflicts. Tr. Verstappen (en), Doc Mac Jr (fr).

Random samples

In thick patches are those rushes, springing by the way (-side) ; / Let not the cattle and sheep trample them. / [...] Cf. Shijing 246

1. Mang Wû asked about Tsze-lû, whether he was perfectly virtuous. The Master said, "I do not know." / 2. He asked [...] Cf. Lunyu 100

Sung / Conflict / Heaven and water go their opposite ways: The image of CONFLICT. Thus in all his transactions the [...] Cf. Yijing 6

When there is Tao in the empire / The galloping steeds are turned back to fertilize the ground by their droppings. / [...] Cf. Daodejing 46

There are sobs when death is the cause of parting; / But life has its partings again and again. / ...From the [...] Cf. Tangshi 11

When an army feeds its horses with grain and kills its cattle for food, [...] Cf. Sunzi 148


In these pages it's possible to read the Analects of Confucius (Lunyu), The Way and its Power (Daode Jing) attributed to Lao-tse and some other wisdom or poetry texts in Chinese with English and French translations. Any Chinese characters are linked to dictionaries. Your browser must display Chinese.

Why read Confucius, Lao-tse or the Book of Changes? Well, these Chinese classics have had a major influence on the oldest civilization still in existence on the face of this planet; that should be enough. If not, please consider that China, mostly as a distant mirror where hopes and fears are reflected, has exercised a profound impact on the thinking patterns of Western civilisations, and will. This article in the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy explains things better.

Chinese landscape on plate (36)
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