William Dolby

Classical Chinese Translations and Research

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30. Chinese non-drama aria-poems, an anthology (VOLUME ONE)


Book Details

"Chinese non-drama aria-poems, an anthology" as translated and annotated by William Dolby. This work is presented in two volumes. The second volume is numbered No33 of the Chinese Culture Series. The original version was published in the 1980's but this edition (2010) comes with greater visual aspect, more footnotes and Chinese-charachter text for each poem.

This work represents the 30th of 33 of the Chinese Culture Series.

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One of the three main kinds of ancient Chinese poetry, the Ch'ü aria first flourished during the 13th and 14th centuries AD, when it was the principle mode of poetic composition, both as a free form, and as the core singing component of the newly arisen Chinese drama. When Khublai Khan ruled China, and dominated the world, from his great capital, modern Peking, the Ch'ü aria sang of anything and everything, of horses and harlots, of fleas and emperors, of history and landscape, and in lofty and common language, covering all ranges of topics and moods. This selection includes the four most famous long aria-sets, and many other shorter poems which have revered position in the splendours of Chinese tradition.