47 folding leaves. Small 8vo, orig. wrappers (frayed), orig. stitching. [Tianjin]: Shangyu Luo shi 上虞羅氏, 1924.
First edition of this collection of texts regarding materials unearthed at Dunhuang. The discovery of a sealed monastic library at Dunhuang in western China in the early 20th century was one of the most important archaeological discoveries in modern Chinese history. Countless texts in various languages were found, offering unique insights into the literary culture of the Chinese periphery in the first millennium CE. After Aurel Stein, Paul Pelliot, and other foreign explorers brought much of the material out of China, getting an overview of the extant corpus was one of the major early tasks of research on the Dunhuang finds.
Our book contains seven collections of typeset texts. The editor, leading Republican-era intellectual Luo Zhenyu (1866-1940), explains in a prefatory note how he upon return to China came across several fragmentary pieces of fiction from Dunhuang, which he believed counted among the earliest examples of Chinese narrative fiction (xiaoshuo 小說). After Pelliot in 1924 sent him a copy of yet another narrative poem, he eventually had his son Luo Fubao 福葆 (1899-1967) gather these pieces and print them.
Item ID: 10048