Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period/Huang Tsung-yen

HUANG Tsung-yen 黃宗炎 (T. 晦木, 立谿, H. 鷓鴣先生), 1616–1686, scholar, artist, Ming loyalist, second son of Huang Tsun-su (see under Huang Tsung-hsi), was a native of Yü-yao, Chekiang. He, together with his elder brother, Huang Tsung-hsi [q. v.], and his younger brother, Huang Tsung-hui 黃宗會 (T. 澤望, H. 縮齋, 石田先生, 1618–1663), were known as the "Three Huangs" 三黃. All were pupils of the last prominent Ming philosopher, Liu Tsung-chou [q. v.]. Early in the Ch'ung-chên period (1628–1644) Huang Tsung-yen became a senior licentiate. When Peking fell to the Manchus he disposed of some of his property in order to finance the restoration of the waning dynasty. He and his elder brother went to the vicinity of Shaohsing to meet the Prince of Lu (see under Chu I-hai) and organized the volunteer encampment known as Shih-chung ying (see under Huang Tsung-hsi). He was twice—in 1650 and again in 1656—arrested by the Manchus and sentenced to die for his political activities, but was saved by the help of his elder brother and their faithful friends.

Realizing then that there was no hope for the restoration of the defunct dynasty, he turned to the study of the Classics, making the Classic of Changes his special pursuit. Later he left home to make his living by the sale of medicines and objects of art produced by his own hands, such as paintings, calligraphy and carved ink-stones. His work, 周易象辭 Chou-i hsiang-tz'ŭ, in 21 chüan, with two short supplementary treatises, in 尋門餘論 Hsün-mên yü-lun, in 2 chüan, and 圖書辨惑 T'u-shu pien-huo, in 1 chüan, received critical notice in the Ssŭ-k'u Catalogue and was copied into the Imperial Manuscript Library (for both see under Chi Yün). This collection is also recorded under the title, 憂患學易 Yu-huan hsüeh-i. Like his brother, Huang Tsung-hsi, he questioned the antiquity of the diagrams, attributed by the Sung philosophers to the Classic of Changes, and so helped to undermine the cosmology on which that philosophy was based (see under Hu Wei). The two supplementary, works were printed in the Chao-tai ts'ung-shu (see under Ch'ên Chên-hui) where, however, the second of the two titles reads: 易學辨惑 I-hsüeh pien-huo.

It is said that Huang Tsung-yen painted in the style of the T'ang artist, Li Chao-tao 李昭道, who is often referred to as "Little General Li" 小李將軍 and whose father, Li Ssŭ-hsün 李思訓 (T. 建見, 651–716), was known as "General Li". Huang Tsung-yen's younger brother, Huang Tsung-hui, became a senior licentiate in 1644 and qualified for the metropolitan examination in that year, but Peking fell before the examination took place. Like his brother, he was ardently loyal to the fallen dynasty, but being younger and more emotional, the change made him despondent and pessimistic. In later years he gave himself up to poetry and drinking, and then to Buddhism.


[M.36/13/28a; M.59/54/7a; 2/68/4b; 3/411/1a, 468/5a; Yü-yao-hsien chih (1899) 23/5a, 6a; Ssŭ-k'u 6/3a.]

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