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Chinese Text Project
Show translation:[None] [English]

《大傳 - Da Zhuan》

English translation: James Legge [?]
Books referencing 《大傳》 Library Resources
[Also known as: "The great treatise"]

1 大傳:
禮:不王不禘。王者禘其祖之所自出,以其祖配之。諸侯及其大祖,大夫士有大事,省於其君,干祫,及其高祖。
Da Zhuan:
According to the rules, only the king offered the united sacrifice to all ancestors. The chief place was then given to him from whom the founder of the line sprang, and that founder had the place of assessor to him. The sacrifices of the princes of states reached to their highest ancestor. Great officers and other officers, who had performed great services, when these were examined (and approved) by the ruler, were able to carry their sacrifices up to their high ancestor.

2 大傳:
牧之野,武王之大事也。既事而退,柴於上帝,祈於社,設奠於牧室。遂率天下諸侯,執豆籩,逡奔走;追王大王亶父、王季歷、文王昌;不以卑臨尊也。
Da Zhuan:
The field of Mu-ye was the great achievement of king Wu. When he withdrew after the victory, he reared a burning pile to God; prayed at the altar of the earth; and set forth his offerings in the house of Mu. He then led all the princes of the kingdom, bearing his offerings in their various stands, and hurrying about, and carried the title of king back to Tai who was Dan-fu, Ji-li, and king Wen who was Chang - he would not approach his honourable ancestors with their former humbler titles.

3 大傳:
上治祖禰,尊尊也;下治子孫,親親也;旁治昆弟,合族以食,序以昭繆,別之以禮義,人道竭矣。
Da Zhuan:
Thus he regulated the services to be rendered to his father and grandfather before him - giving honour to the most honourable. He regulated the places to be given to his sons and grandsons below him - showing his affection to his kindred. He regulated (also) the observances for the collateral branches of his cousins;-associating all their members in the feasting. He defined their places according to their order of descent; and his every distinction was in harmony with what was proper and right. In this way the procedure of human duty was made complete.

4 大傳:
聖人南面而聽天下,所且先者五,民不與焉。一曰治親,二曰報功,三曰舉賢,四曰使能,五曰存愛。五者一得於天下,民無不足、無不贍者。五者,一物紕繆,民莫得其死。聖人南面而治天下,必自人道始矣。
Da Zhuan:
When a sage sovereign stood with his face to the south, and all the affairs of the kingdom came before him, there were five things which for the time claimed his first care, and the people were not reckoned among them. The first was the regulating what was due to his kindred (as above) the second, the reward of merit; the third, the promotion of worth; the fourth, the employment of ability; and the fifth, the maintenance of a loving vigilance. When these five things were all fully realised, the people had all their necessities satisfied, all that they wanted supplied. If one of them were defective, the people could not complete their lives in comfort. It was necessary for a sage on the throne of government to begin with the (above) procedure of human duty.

5 大傳:
立權度量,考文章,改正朔,易服色,殊徽號,異器械,別衣服,此其所得與民變革者也。其不可得變革者則有矣:親親也,尊尊也,長長也,男女有別,此其不可得與民變革者也。
Da Zhuan:
The appointment of the measures of weight, length, and capacity; the fixing the elegancies (of ceremony); the changing the commencement of the year and month; alterations in the colour of dress; differences of flags and their blazonry; changes in vessels and weapons, and distinctions in dress: these were things, changes in which could be enjoined on the people. But no changes could be enjoined upon them in what concerned affection for kin, the honour paid to the honourable, the respect due to the aged, and the different positions and functions of male and female.

6 大傳:
同姓從宗,合族屬;異姓主名,治際會。名著,而男女有別。其夫屬乎父道者,妻皆母道也;其夫屬乎子道者,妻皆婦道也。謂弟之妻「婦」者,是嫂亦可謂之「母」乎?名者人治之大者也,可無慎乎?
Da Zhuan:
Members of the same surname were united together in the various ramifications of their kinship, under the Heads of their different branches. Those of a different surname had their mutual relations regulated principally by the names assigned to them. Those names being clearly set forth, the different positions of males and females were determined. When the husband belonged to the class of fathers [or uncles], the wife was placed in that of mothers [or aunts]; when he belonged to the class of sons [or cousins], the wife was placed in that of (junior) wives. Since the wife of a younger brother was (thus) styled (junior) wife, could the wife of his elder brother be at the same time styled mother [or aunt]? The name or appellation is of the greatest importance in the regulation of the family - was not anxious care required in the declaration of it?

7 大傳:
四世而緦,服之窮也;五世袒免,殺同姓也。六世,親屬竭矣。其庶姓別於上,而戚單於下,昏姻可以通乎?系之以姓而弗別,綴之以食而弗殊,雖百世而昏姻不通者,周道然也。
Da Zhuan:
For parties four generations removed (from the same common ancestor) the mourning was reduced to that worn for three months, and this was the limit of wearing the hempen cloth. If the generations were five, the shoulders were bared and the cincture assumed; and in this way the mourning within the circle of the same was gradually reduced. After the sixth generation the bond of kinship was held to be at an end. As the branch-surnames which arose separated the members of them from their relatives of a former time, and the kinship disappeared as time went on, (so far as wearing mourning was concerned), could marriage be contracted between parties (so wide apart)? But there was that original surname tying all the members together without distinction, and the maintenance of the connexion by means of the common feast - while there were these conditions, there could be no intermarriage, even after a hundred generations. Such was the rule of Zhou.

8 大傳:
服術有六:一曰親親,二曰尊尊,三曰名,四曰出入,五曰長幼,六曰從服。
Da Zhuan:
The considerations which regulated the mourning worn were six - first., the nearness of the kinship; second, the honour due to the honourable; third, the names (as expressing the position in the relative circle); fourth, the cases of women still unmarried in the paternal home, and of those who had married and left it; fifth, age; and sixth, affinity, and external relationship.

9 大傳:
從服有六:有屬從,有徒從,有從有服而無服,有從無服而有服,有從重而輕,有從輕而重。
Da Zhuan:
Of the considerations of affinity and external relationship there were six cases - those arising from inter-relationship; those in which there was no inter-relationship; those where mourning should be worn, and yet was not, those where it should not be worn, and yet was; those where it should be deep, and yet was light; and those where it should be light, and yet was deep.

10 大傳:
自仁率親,等而上之,至于祖,名曰輕。自義率祖,順而下之,至于禰,名曰重。一輕一重,其義然也。
Da Zhuan:
Where the starting-point was affection, it began from the father. Going up from him by degrees it reached to the (high) ancestor, and was said to diminish. Where the starting-point was the consideration of what is right, it began with the ancestor. Coming down by natural degrees from him, it reached to the father, and was said to increase. In the diminution and the increase, the considerations of affection and right acted thus.

11 大傳:
君有合族之道,族人不得以其戚戚君,位也。
Da Zhuan:
It was the way for the ruler to assemble and feast all the members of his kindred. None of them could, because of their mutual kinship, claim a nearer kinship with him than what was expressed by the places (assigned to them).

12 大傳:
庶子不祭,明其宗也。庶子不得為長子三年,不繼祖也。
Da Zhuan:
Any son but the eldest, (though all sons of the wife proper), did not sacrifice to his grandfather,--to show there was the Honoured Head (who should do so). Nor could he wear mourning for his eldest son for three years, because he was not the continuator of his grandfather.

13 大傳:
別子為祖,繼別為宗,繼禰者為小宗。
Da Zhuan:
When any other son but the eldest became an ancestor of a line, he who succeeded him became the Honoured Head (of the branch); and his successor again became the smaller Head.

14 大傳:
有百世不遷之宗,有五世則遷之宗。百世不遷者,別子之後也;宗其繼別子者,百世不遷者也。宗其繼高祖者,五世則遷者也。尊祖故敬宗。敬宗,尊祖之義也。
Da Zhuan:
There was the (great) Honoured Head whose tablet was not removed for a hundred generations. There were the (smaller) Honoured Heads whose tablets were removed after five generations. He whose tablet was not removed for a hundred generations was the successor and representative of the other than the eldest son (who became an ancestor of a line); and he was so honoured (by the members of his line) because he continued the (High) ancestor from whom (both) he and they sprang; this was why his tablet was not removed for a hundred generations. He who honoured the continuator of the High ancestor was he whose tablet was removed after five generations. They honoured the Ancestor, and therefore they reverenced the Head. The reverence showed the significance of that honour.

15 大傳:
有小宗而無大宗者,有大宗而無小宗者,有無宗亦莫之宗者,公子是也。公子有宗道:公子之公,為其士大夫之庶者,宗其士大夫之適者,公子之宗道也。
Da Zhuan:
There might be cases in which there was a smaller Honoured Head, and no Greater Head (of a branch family); cases in which there was a Greater Honoured Head, and no smaller Head; and cases in which there was an Honoured Head, with none to honour him. All these might exist in the instance of the son of the ruler of a state. The course to be adopted for the headship of such a son was this; that the ruler,. himself the proper representative of former rulers, should for all his half-brothers who were officers and Great officers appoint a full brother, also an officer or a Great officer, to be the Honoured Head. Such was the regular course.

16 大傳:
絕族無移服,親者屬也。
Da Zhuan:
When the kinship was no longer counted, there was no further wearing of mourning. The kinship was the bond of connexion (expressed in the degree of mourning).

17 大傳:
自仁率親,等而上之,至于祖;自義率祖,順而下之,至於禰。是故,人道親親也。
Da Zhuan:
Where the starting-point was in affection, it began with the father, and ascended by steps to the ancestor. Where it was in a consideration of what was right, it began with the ancestor, and descended in natural order to the deceased father. Thus the course of humanity (in this matter of mourning) was all comprehended in the love for kindred.

18 大傳:
親親故尊祖,尊祖故敬宗,敬宗故收族,收族故宗廟嚴,宗廟嚴故重社稷,重社稷故愛百姓,愛百姓故刑罰中,刑罰中故庶民安,庶民安故財用足,財用足故百志成,百志成故禮俗刑,禮俗刑然後樂。《》云:「不顯不承,無斁於人斯」,此之謂也。
Da Zhuan:
From the affection for parents came the honouring of ancestors; from the honouring of the ancestor came the respect and attention shown to the Heads (of the family branches). By that respect and attention to those Heads all the members of the kindred were kept together. Through their being kept together came the dignity of the ancestral temple. From that dignity arose the importance attached to the altars of the land and grain. From that importance there ensued the love of all the (people with their) hundred surnames. From that love came the right administration of punishments and penalties. Through that administration the people had the feeling of repose. Through that restfulness all resources for expenditure became, sufficient. Through the sufficiency of these, what all desired was realised. The realisation led to all courteous usages and good customs; and from these, in fine, came all happiness and enjoyment - affording an illustration of what is said in the ode - 'Glory and honour follow Wen's great name, And ne'er will men be weary of his fame.'

URN: ctp:liji/da-zhuan