The Mencius (Chinese: 孟子; Old Chinese: *mˤraŋ-s tsəʔ; pinyin: mèngzǐ), is a collection of anecdotes and conversations of the Confucian thinker and philosopher Mencius on topics in moral and political philosophy. Mencius was a disciple of one of the students of Zisi, a grandson of Confucius, and the Mencius records his travels and audiences with the various rulers of the Warring States period, his students, and his other contemporaries. A number of linguistic and textual clues suggest that the text was not written by Mencius himself but by his disciples, probably during the late 4th century BC.
The Mencius comprises 7 chapters, each divided into two halves, with alternating short sayings and extensive dialogues on specific philosophical arguments. Its fundamental positions, such as Mencius' famous argument in chapter 6A that human nature is inherently good, are usually presented as conversations between Mencius and contemporaneous thinkers, while arguments on specific issues usually appear in records of his advice and counsel to various rulers.
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Lau, D. C. (1993). "Meng tzu 孟子 (Mencius)". In Loewe, Michael. Early Chinese Texts: A Bibliographical Guide. Berkeley: Society for the Study of Early China; Institute of East Asian Studies, University of California, Berkeley. pp. 331–335. ISBN1-55729-043-1.
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