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Gui Youguang (Traditional Chinese: 歸有光; Simplified Chinese: 归有光; pinyin: Guī Yǒuguāng; 1506–1571) was a Chinese writer of Ming Dynasty. His courtesy name was Xi Fu (熙甫) and his art name was Zhenchuan (simplified Chinese: 归震川), and he was also known as Kai Fu (开甫) and Xiang Jisheng (项脊生).
His prose writings were highly praised. People of his time regarded him as a modern-day Ouyang Xiu, an important writer of the earlier Song Dynasty, and later generations praised his works as "the best prose of the Ming Dynasty".
His works include Xiang Ji Xuan Zhi, Sanwu Shuili Lu, Zhenchuan Wen Ji, Guan Li, Zong Fa and some other short prose writings and books. He was one of the early masters of the xiaopin.
Gui Youguang was born in Kunshan, a county in south-east Jiangsu Province. His family had been a large, important family in the past, but by Gui Youguang's time it was falling increasingly into decay. When he was only eight years old, his 25-year-old mother died, leaving her husband to support their three sons and two daughters. After that, his family lived a much harder life; Gui learned about suffering and sorrow at a very early age. Because of his cleverness and hard work, Gui was able to write relatively good articles when he was only nine years old. At the age of ten, he wrote an article of several thousand words, called Qi Xi Lun (乞醯论). Gui then took the local examination, Tongzi Shi(童子试), in order to qualify to take a further examination to become an official of the Ming Dynasty. He came first[clarification needed] in this examination when he was 20 years old.
He went to Nanjing to take the higher examinations eight times[clarification needed] but failed each time. In 1565, Gui finally got a Jinshi(进士; the lowest title for participants who are accepted by examiners) in his ninth examination. Gui became a Zhixian(知县; an official position) in Changxing[disambiguation needed] (长兴) at the age of sixty. Three years later, Gui was transferred to be a Tongpan in Shunde(顺德). In 1570, after Gui went to Beijing to celebrate Wanshoujie (万寿节; the birthday of the emperor), he was promoted[clarification needed] to be the Taipusi Sichen in Nanjing (南京太仆寺寺丞; an official position). But he remained in Beijing[clarification needed] to compile a book called Shizong Shi Lu (世宗实录) for the emperor.
Books: Sanwu Shuili Lu(三吴水利录), Zhenchuan Wen Ji(震川文集), Guan Li(冠礼), Zong Fa(宗法).
Short prose writings:Xiang Ji Xuan Zhi(项脊轩志), Canglang Ting Ji(沧浪亭记), Hanhua Zang Zhi(寒花葬志), Xianbi Shi Lue(先妣事略), Sizi Ting Ji(思子亭记).
In 1828, Tao Zhu, the Jiangsu Xunfu of that time, got permission from the emperor. A school named Zhenchuan Shuyuan was built to memorize Gui Youguang after three years’ construction. Then in 1903, Zhenchuan Shuyuan was closed. One year later, An Yuan and some other people founded the Zhenchuan Primary School at the same place as Zhenchuan Shuyuan. After several years, Zhenchuan junior high school was added to Zhenchuan Primary School. Now the school is called Anting Junior High School which is located in Anting Town, Jiading District, Shanghai.
- Britannica Kokusai Dai-Hyakkajiten article "Gui You-guang" (帰有光, Ki Yūkō in Japanese). Shogakukan.
- Daijisen entry "Gui Youguang" (帰有光, Ki Yūkō in Japanese). Gakken 2006.
- 归有光_中华五千年 [Gui Youguang] (in Chinese). 2007-09-22.
- Mair 2001. "Introduction: The Origins and Impact of Literati Culture", paragraph 22.
- Nomura Ayuko, 2009. 科学研究費補助金研究成果報告書 ３．研究の方法 （１）個人研究, 14 April 2009. National Institute of Informatics. Accessed 8 April 2016.