Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period/Liu Yü-sung

LIU Yü-sung 劉毓崧, Mar. 29, 1818–1867, Sept. 6, scholar, was a native of I-chêng, Kiangsu, who made his home in Yangchow. After studying under his father, Liu Wên-ch'i [q. v.], he became in 1840 a licentiate and entered the Imperial Academy in Peking. Unable, however, to obtain an appointment, he returned to Yangchow and assisted his father in editing and collating the Yü-ti chi-shêng (see under Wu Ch'ung-yüeh), the Old History of the T'ang Dynasty, and two old gazetteers of Chinkiang (see under Liu Wên-ch'i). For a few years he served as tutor to the sons of Kuo P'ei-lin 郭沛霖 (T. 仲霽, H. 雨三, 1809–1859), assistant Salt Controller of the Yangchow region (1853–55). When Tsêng Kuo-fan [q. v.] established in 1864 the Kiangnan Printing Office at Nanking (see under Tsêng Kuo-fan), Liu was made the senior member of the staff. Thereafter, together with other scholars, he devoted his declining years to editing and printing numerous books which were known as Kiangnan Printing Office editions. Among them was the second edition of the Ch'uan-shan i-shu, comprising the collected works of Wang Fu-chih [q. v.]. This work was printed in 1864–66, and to it Liu appended a criticism in 2 chüan of the entire text. While engaged in these editorial tasks he compiled a chronological biography of Wang Fuchih, entitled Wang Ch'uan-shan hsien-shêng nien-p'u (see under Wang Fu-chih), 2 chüan.

Liu Yü-sung continued a critical study of the Ch'un-ch'iu Tso-shih chuan (see under Liu Wên-ch'i) which his father had begun, but, as he too failed to complete it, it was carried on by his descendants (see below). He left several works on the Classics, including the Ch'un-ch'iu Tso-shih chuan ta-i (大義), 2 chüan, most of which failed to be printed. His 尚書舊疏考證 Shang-shu chiu-shu k'ao-chêng and his Chou-i (周易) chiu-shu k'ao-chêng—brief criticisms of ancient comments on the Classic of History and on the Classic of Changes respectively—were collected in the Huang-Ch'ing ching-chieh hsü-pien (see under Juan Yüan). A collection of his prose was printed in 1888 in 7 chüan under the title 通義堂文集 Tung-i t'ang wên-chi, of which an enlarged edition in 16 chüan appeared in 1920.

After the death of Liu Yü-sung his eldest son, Liu Shou-tsêng 劉壽曾 (T. 恭甫, H. 芝雲, 1838–1882), became a member of the staff of the Kiangnan Printing Office and served there until 1881. He and his younger brother, Liu Kuei-tsêng 劉貴曾 (T. 良輔, H. 少崖, 抱甕居士, 1845–1898), took up Liu Yü-sung's study on the Ch'un-ch'iu Tso-shih chuan, but they did not complete it. The last scholar who devoted himself to this task was a son of Liu Kuei-tsêng, named Liu Shih-p'ei 劉師培 (T. 申叔, H. 左盦, 1884–1919). The latter died comparatively young, leaving no one in the Liu family to carry on the work. The voluminous manuscript drafts on which four generations of the Liu family had labored thus failed to be published. Liu Shih-p'ei served in his twenties as a private secretary to Tuan-fang [q. v.], but after the death of the latter (1911), he taught in the Chengtu Higher Normal School. Late in 1915 he was made a member of the Advisory Council to the President and supported the attempt of Yüan Shih-k'ai (see under Yüan Chia-san) to re-establish the Imperial regime. After the death of Yüan in June of the following year Liu Shih-p'ei retired temporarily. Late in 1917 he became a teacher in the Peking National University, a position which he held until his death, November 20, 1919. As a scholar he was anxious to maintain the traditions of native scholarship and was opposed to Western innovations. Numerous articles by him were published in the three sinological journals: 國粹學報 Kuo-ts'ui hsüeh-pao between 1905–11; 四川國學雜志 Szechwan kuo-hsüeh tsa-chih between 1912–14; and 國故 Kuo-ku in 1919. The drafts of his lectures at the Peking National University were printed under the titles 中國文學 Chung-keo wên-hsüeh and 中國中古文學史 Chung-kuo chung-ku wên-hsieh shih. A collection of his prose, entitled 左盦集, Tso-an chi, 8 chüan, was printed about 1910 and again in 1928.


[1/488/22a; 2/69/42a; 5/74/19b, 75/9a; 6/卷末/4a; Liu Kung-mien (see under Liu Pao-nan), 廣經堂文鈔 Kuang-ching t'ang wên-ch'ao (1889) 45b; Tso-an chi (see above) 6/1a; T'ung-i t'ang wên-chi; Kojima Yūma 小島祐馬, 劉師培の學 in 藝文 Geibun, vol. XI, nos. 5 and 7 (1920).]

Hiromu Momose