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

On the willows at the east gate, / The leaves are very luxuria.... / The evening was the time agreed on, / And [...] Cf. Shijing 140

Mang Wû asked what filial piety was. The Master said, "Parents are anxious lest their children should be sick." [...] Cf. Lunyu 22

Ts'ui / Gathering Together [Massing] / Over the earth, the lake: The image of GATHERING TOGETHER. Thus the superior [...] Cf. Yijing 45

In Tao the only motion is returning; / The only useful quality, weakness. / For though all creatures under heaven are [...] Cf. Daodejing 40

Only to wanderers can come / Ever new the shock of beauty, / Of white cloud and red cloud dawning from the sea, [...] Cf. Tangshi 94

If you march fifty li in order to outmaneuver the enemy, you will lose the leader of your first division, and only [...] Cf. Sunzi 100


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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