Strange Tales from Liaozhai--Volume 4 by Pu SongLing

Strange Tales from Liaozhai--Volume 4 by Pu SongLing

Author:Pu SongLing
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Jain Publishing Company
Published: 2010-08-05T16:00:00+00:00

285. Huanniang

Wen Ruchun came from an influential family in Shaanxi. When he was young, he was absolutely obsessed with playing the qin, and even when staying at an inn, he’d never let it out of his sight, not even briefly. As he was traveling through Shanxi, he happened by an ancient temple, and after tying up his horse outside the gate, he stopped to rest for a bit.

As he entered, he met a Daoist wearing a robe of patched cloth, who was sitting cross-legged on the veranda with a bamboo cane leaning against the wall, and a qin in a colorful cloth bag. Wen’s enthusiasm was stirred, prompting him to ask, “So you’re also fond of the instrument?”

“I’m not really very good,” the Daoist replied, “but I’d like to study with someone who’s good at it, to learn to play properly.”

Then he took the bag off of the qin and handed it to Wen, who examined it closely, finding its wood grain of excellent quality, then lightly plucked it, the sound resonating with an extraordinary clarity. He happily strummed the qin, performing a short musical piece. The Daoist smiled as though not terribly impressed, so Wen proceeded to spare no effort in demonstrating his mastery of the instrument.


Qin: A seven-stringed, zither-like instrument, made of lacquered wood and played flat by plucking strings with the right hand while they’re pressed or bent with the left hand, which has a range of four octaves.

Shaanxi . . . Shanxi: The two provinces share a common border.


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