Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 3.djvu/9

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Preface xiii


I. The Nature and History of the Shû 1
Meaning of the name Shû King. The Shû existed as a collection of documents before Confucius. Number of documents in it in his time. The Preface ascribed to him. The sources of the Shû. Destruction of the classical literature by the emperor of Khin. Recovery of the Shû.
II. The Credibility of the Records of the Shû 12
Are the records reliable or not? The Books of Kâu; of Shang; of Hsiâ. The Books of Thang and Yü; are professedly later compilations; legendary; based on ancient documents. The Tribute of Yü. Yâo, Shun, and Yü are all historical personages.
III. On the Chronology of China, and the Principal Eras in the Shû 20
No detailed chronological system can be made out from Shû. Attempts at systematic chronology began in the Han period. Ancient method of determining the length of Chinese history. The period of the Kâu dynasty; of the Shang; of the Hsiâ; of the Yâo and Shun.
A Chart by the Rev. Professor Pritchard, representing the principal zodiacal stars above the horizon of any place in central China, about the year B. C. 2300; with note, and table of the apparent positions of the principal stars in B. C. 2300, B. C. 1500, A. D. 1, A. D. 1000, and A. D. 1878

Part I. The Book of Thang

The Canon of Yâo 31