Page:Sun Tzu on The art of war.djvu/20

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XVIII
INTRODUCTION

that before his interview with Ho Lu, Sun Tzŭ had only written the 13 chapters, but afterwards composed a sort of exegesis in the form of question and answer between himself and the King. 畢以珣 Pi I-hsün, author of the 孫子敘錄 Sun Tzŭ Hsü Lu, backs this up with a quotation from the Wu Yüeh Ch‘un Ch‘iu: “The King of Wu summoned Sun Tzŭ, and asked him questions about the art of war. Each time he set forth a chapter of his work, the King could not find words enough to praise him.”[1] As he points out, if the whole work was expounded on the same scale as in the above-mentioned fragments, the total number of chapters could not fail to be considerable.[2] Then the numerous other treatises attributed to Sun Tzŭ[3] might also be included. The fact that the Han Chih mentions no work of Sun Tzŭ except the 82 p‘ien, whereas the Sui and T‘ang bibliographies give the titles of others in addition to the “13 chapters,” is good proof, Pi I-hsün thinks, that all of these were contained in the 82 p‘ien. Without pinning our faith to the accuracy of details supplied by the Wu Yüeh Ch‘un Ch‘iu, or admitting the genuineness of any of the treatises cited by Pi I-hsün, we may see in this theory a probable solution of the mystery. Between Ss‘ŭ-ma Ch‘ien and Pan Ku there was plenty of time for a luxuriant crop of forgeries to have grown up under the magic name of Sun Tzŭ, and the 82 p‘ien may very well represent a collected edition of these lumped together with the original work.


  1. 吳王召孫子問以兵法每陳一篇王不知口之稱善.
  2. 按此皆釋九地篇義辭意甚詳故其篇帙不能不多也.
  3. Such as the 八陣圖, quoted in 鄭玄 Chêng Hsüan’s commentary on the Chou Li, the 戰鬭大甲兵法 and 兵法雜占, mentioned in the 隨志 Sui Chih 三十二壘經, in the Hsin T‘ang Chih.