ChinaKnowledge.de -
An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History, Literature and Art

Xixia jishi benmo 西夏紀事本末

Aug 23, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald

Xixia jishi benmo 西夏紀事本末 "Historical events from the Western Xia Empire in their entirety" is a history of the Western Xia empire 西夏 (1038-1227) written by the Qing-period 清 (1644-1911) historian Zhang Jian 張鑒 (1768-1850), courtesy name Chunzhi 春冶, style Xunhe 荀鶴, Zhenji jushi 貞疾居士 or Master Qiushui 秋水. He hailed from Wuxing 吳興, Zhejiang and was very interested in naval defence and disaster relief in his younger years. He was also an ardent writer and compiled a lot of writings of historiographical or Confucian content, like Dongnan banbi jishi 東南半壁紀事, Suichao xinggong lu 隋朝行宮錄, Fanliguan zhi 蕃厘觀志, Litong suishi xiaochang lu 歷統歲實消長表, Shisanjing congshuo 十三經叢說, or Guwen shangshu cuoshuo 古文尚書脞説.

The 36-juan long Xixia jishi benmo is written in the historiographical style of "events in their entirety" (jishi benmo 紀事本末). For the compilation, Zhang Jian studied a lot of different sources from the Song 宋 (960-1279), Liao 遼 (907-1125), Jin 金 (1115-1234) and Yuan 元 (1279-1368) empires. This was necessary because there is no official dynastic history for the Western Xia empire. His books also contains a chronological table (Nianbiao 年表), a map of the administrative units of the fortifications (Xixia baosai futu 西夏堡塞附圖), an overview of the surveillance units (Lidai jiangyu jielüe 歷代疆域節略) and a table of the occupation of state offices (Zhifangbiao 職方表).

The book was printed during the Guangxu reign-period 光緒 (1875-1908) in Jiangsu. In 1992 the Jiangsu Guangling Guji Keyinshe press 江蘇廣陵古籍刻印社 published a facsimile of this edition.

Sources:
Gao Wende 高文德, ed. (1995). Zhongguo shaoshu minzu shi da cidian 中國少數民族史大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin jiaoyu chubanshe), 714.
Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文鬰, ed. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 1, 918.
Wu Feng 吳楓, ed. (1987). Jianming Zhongguo guji cidian 簡明中國古籍辭典 (Chanchun: Jilin wenshi chubanshe), 307.