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  • Julia Min

皇帝阁端午帖子The material for your curtain panels


皇帝阁端午帖子

原作:李清照

英译:闵晓红


日月尧天大,

璇玑舜历长。

侧闻行殿帐,

多集上书囊。


The material for your curtain panels

- a season’s greeting scroll for the Emperor’s chamber hall for Dragon Boat Festival.

written by: : Li Qingzhao

translated by: Julia Min


The material for your curtain panels, they say,

comes mostly from the book bags of your shelves.

You’d reap the glory that lit through Yao’s days,

and harvest the longest calendar like Shun’s reign.


Appreciation:

Li Qingzhao wrote this in 1143 when she settled in Lin’an ( today’s Hangzhou), the capital of Southern Song Dynasty.


This is a season’s greeting poem in the popular form of five-character quatrain in praise of the Emperor. It’s usually written on a scroll in Chinese calligraphy from right to left in vertical lines, and is usually hung on the wall or on curtains and screens inside a hall to be appreciated by the Royal family and guests during the Festival. The style adopts a light-hearted satire for a stronger humorous after-taste -- a more impressive praise on the frugal living style of the Emperor.


Simplicity and humility were well honoured throughout the Song dynasty thanks to the frugal living style of the Royal family. The influence can be witnessed in many aspects of Song’s artistic works. Legend has it that Yao and Shun were the two ancients leaders of Chinese tribes about 5000 years ago. They have often been highly regarded by Chinese as the most ideal leaders of the people for their frugality, humility, industry and simplicity – the fundamental qualities in a ruler for a long reign. Emperors of later dynasties often compared themselves with them as the highest standards for their reigns.


Unfortunately, the consumption of today’s society has made us feel that a good life lies in having things, whereas the real liberty in a good life could be having less. The minimalists would love the Song lifestyle.



Reference:

1. baike.baidu.com (百度百科)

2. zh.wikipedia.org (维基百科)

3. 《李清照集笺注》李清照撰,徐培均笺注; 2002年上海古籍出版社

4. 《李清照文集》 作者:(北宋)李清照著,刘振鹏https://books.google.com.au/

5. All pictures are selected from google search.


 




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