Great Books of China

A list of books from China and I think every reader should strive to read and know what this 3000 year old civilization can offer for minds and bodies. It starts from “Oracle Bones” (1600 – 1046 BCE)  to Dao de Jing by Lao Tzu to Plum in Golden Vase to Travels of Lao Can and on, but I’ve restricted it until early 20th century. Time elapsed provides majesty and grandeur to a work of literature which contemporary works can’t garner and hence celebrated as classic. Again a book also need to deserve one and that’s why not all make it. This list comes from ‘The Great Books of China – From Ancient Times to Present’ by Frances Wood. I want to prepare one for India too. Both nations of great civilization since time immemorial.

Booklist

Book Author PUBLISHED or Author’s Year
Book of Songs
She jing
Unknown 1000–600 BCE
Book of Changes
Yi jing
Unknown 1st millenium BCE
Classic of the Way and of Virtue
Dao de jing
Lao Tzu 6 to 4 century BCE
Zhuangzi Zhuangzi 4 century BCE
Analects
Lun yu
Confucius 6 to 3 century BCE
Mencius Mengzi 4 century BCE
Master Sun’s Art of War
Sunzi bingfa
Sun Wu 544 – 496 BCE
Almanac
Tongshu
Unknown
Proper Ritual
Yi li
Unknown 206 BCE – 9 CE
The Grand Scribe’s Records
Shi ji
Sima Qian 150 – 86 BCE
Nineteen Old Poems
Gu shi shiju shou
Unknown 25 – 220 CE
Records of Buddhist Kingdoms
Foguo ji
Fa Xian 337 – 422 CE
Lotus Sutra
Sad dharma pundarika Sutra
Unknown 3 to 5 century
Diamond Sutra
Vajra cchedika prajna paramita Sutra
Unknown 5 century
Poems Li Bai, Du Fu, Li Shangyin, Li Qingzhao 8 – 9 century
The Story of Yingying
Yingying zhuan
Yuan Zhen 779 – 831
Master Dong’s Western Chamber Romance
Xi xiang ji
Wang Shifu 1189 – 1208
The Orphans of Zhao
Zhao shi guer
Attributed to Ji Juanxiang 13 century
Three Character Classic
Sanzi jing
Attributed to Wang Yinglin 1223 – 1296
Twenty-Four Exemplars of Filial Piety
Ershi xiao
Attributed to Guo Jujing 1279 – 1368
The Water Margin
Shuibu zhuan
Attributed to Shi Naian or Luo Guanzhong 1396-1371 or
1330-1400
The Story of Three Kingdoms
Sanguo zhi
Attributed to Luo Guanzhong 1330 – 1400
The Story of Lute
Pip ji
Gao Ming 1305-1370
The Classic of Lu Ban
Lu Ban jing
Unknown 15 century
Journey to West
Xiyou ji
Attributed to Wu Cheng’En 1500 – 1582
Plum in Golden Vase
Jing ping mei
Unknown 1582 – 96
The carnal Prayer Mat
Rou puttuan
Attributed to Li Yu 1657 or 1610 – 1680
Travels of Xu Xiake
Xu Xiyake youji
Xu Xiake 1587 – 1641
Tracks of a Wild Goose in the Snow
Hong xuan yinyuan tuji
Lin Qing 1847 – 50
The Craft of Gardens
Yuan ye
Ji Cheng 1582 – 1643
Exploitation of the Works of Nature
Tiangong kaiwu
Song Ying Xing 1637
Mustard Seed Garden Manual of Painting
Jieziyuan huazhuan
Unknown, Preface bu Li Yu 1610 – 1680
The Peach Blossom Fan
Taohua shan
Kong Shangren 1699
Unofficial History of the Grove of Literati
Rulin waishi
Wu Jingzi 1750
Three Hundred Tang Poems
Tang shi sanbai shou
Sun Zhu 1763
Strange Stories from the Liao Studio
Lioazhai zhiyi
Pu Song Ling 1766
Dream of the Red Chamber
Hongloumeng
Cao Xue Qin 1715 – 1763
Six Records of a Floating Life
Fusheng liu ji
Shen Fu 1763 – after 1807
The Travels of Lao Can
Lao Can Yu ji
Liu E 1903
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