Classic of Music

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Classic of Music
Traditional Chinese 樂經
Simplified Chinese 乐经

The Classic of Music (Chinese: 樂經; pinyin: Yuè jīng) was a Confucian classic text lost by the time of the Han dynasty. It is sometimes referred to as the "Sixth Classic" and is thought to have been important in the traditional interpretations of the Book of Songs.[1]

Qing dynasty scholar Shao Yichen (邵懿辰, 1810-1861) proposed that the book never existed, but more usually it is thought that all copies were destroyed during the burning of books and burying of scholars.

A few traces remain in other surviving works, including the Zuo Zhuan, the Rites of Zhou, and the extremely redacted, poor-quality Record of Music contained in the Classic of Rites. As accounted in the Book of Han, Dou Gong 竇公 (5-4 cc. BC), a musician of the state of Wei possessed a book Yue shu which was presented to Han Wen-di. However, the text is associated with the Da siyue section of the Zhou li (大宗伯 part).


  1. ^ "The Shih Ching or Book of Poetry". The China Journal of Science and Arts, Vol. IV, No. I (Jan 1926). Accessed 17 Oct 2005.