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Baojuan (宝卷 bǎojuǎn), literally precious scrolls, are a genre of prosimetric texts (texts written in an alternation of prose and verse) of a religious or mystical nature, produced within the context of Chinese folk religion and individual Chinese folk religious sects. They are often written in vernacular Chinese and recount the mythology surrounding a deity or a hero, or constitute the theological and philosophical scriptures of organised folk sects.
The modern study of “precious scrolls” (baojuan 寶卷) can be said to begin with the publication by Zheng Zhenduo 鄭振鐸 of his “Foqu xulu” 佛曲敘錄, which is a catalogue of Buddhist songs. In 1927 in Zhongguo wenxue yanjiu 中國文學研究 [Studies on Chinese Literature].
- Wilt L. Idema, “English –Language Studies of Precious Scrolls: A Bibliographical Survey,” CHINOPERL Papers 31(2012): 163-176.
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