Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period/Ch'êng Ên-tsê

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3634146Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period, Volume 1 — Ch'êng Ên-tsêS. K. Chang and J. C. Yang

CH'ÊNG Ên-tsê 程恩澤 (T. 雲芬, H. 春海), 1785–1837, Aug. 29, official, was a native of Shê-hsien, Anhwei. His father, Ch'êng Ch'ang-ch'i 程昌期 (T. 階平, H. 蘭翹, 1753–1795, chin-shih of 1780), died at his post as educational commissioner of Shantung when Ch'êng Ên-tsê was eleven sui. He learned horsemanship under his maternal grandfather and studied the classics under a fellow-townsman, Ling T'ing-k'an [q. v.]. In 1804 he passed the provincial examination for chü-jên and then made his residence at Peking where he became interested in various branches of learning. After becoming a chin-shih (1811) he was made a bachelor, and later a compiler, in the Hanlin Academy. In 1821 he was detailed for duty in the Imperial Study (see under Chang Ying). In the same year he was appointed chief examiner of the provincial examination of Szechwan and later (1822) a secretary of the Supervisorate of Imperial Instruction. In 1823 he was made commissioner of education of Kweichow where he promoted sericulture, and so greatly benefited the people of that region. He made a reprint of the Yüeh Ko 岳珂 (T. 肅之, H. 亦齋, 倦翁, b. 1183) edition of the Five Classics, which has proved of great value to students. In 1826 he was transferred to be commissioner of education of Hunan. After returning to Peking (1828) he was made libationer of the Imperial Academy. In 1829 he went home to mourn the death of his mother, but returned to Peking in 1831. In 1832 he was appointed chief-examiner for the provincial examination of Kwangtung, and early in the following year made tutor to Mien-yü (see under Yung-yen), younger brother of Emperor Hsüan-tsung. In 1834 he was appointed junior vice-president of the Board of Works, and was transferred in the following year to the Board of Revenue. He served twice (1835, 1836) as reader of the Palace examination. Owing to the intense heat of the summer of 1837 he suddenly fell ill and died at the early age of fifty-three (sui).

In his studies Ch'êng Ên-tsê covered a wide field, including mathematics, geography, etymology, divination, inscriptions on bronze and stone, calligraphy, painting, and the study of the Classics. As a calligrapher he was noted for his skill in the chuan 篆 style. He was an intimate friend of Juan Yüan [q. v.], who being much older, had cherished the hope that Ch'êng Ên-tsê would succeed him in his special field of study. Juan, however, outlived his friend. Ch'êng left numerous notes, but the only work ready for publication at the time of his death was a study of place-names in the Chan kuo ts'e, entitled 國策地名考 Kuo-ts'e ti-ming k'ao, 20 chüan, which he wrote in collaboration with his friend, Ti Tzŭ-ch'i 狄子奇 (T. 叔穎, H. 惺垣, chü-jên of 1835). A collection of his miscellaneous writings, entitled 程侍郎遺集初編 Ch'êng shih-lang i-chi ch'u-pien, 10 chüan, published in 1846, was compiled by Chang Mu and Ho Shao-chi [qq. v.]. Both works were later included in the Yüeh ya t'ang ts'ung-shu (see under Wu Ch'ung-yüeh).

[1/382/3b; 3/114/9a; 5/10/12a; 7/44/5a; 20/4/00 (portrait); 26/310b; 29/9/1a.]

S. K. Chang
J. C. Yang