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Chinese poem illustration: 鄘风 君子偕老/ Yong Wind – Gone with the Lord by Anonymous

鄘风 君子偕老

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A beauty, a queen, with the most grand attire, the most beautiful woman within the state of Yong. It looks like a most grand ceremony, while the poem was deciphered as a blaming to the queen by Han scholars 2000 years ago. What is more, a background story with real name of the queen and king was proposed against this poem: a promiscuous queen, an ugly history figure to blame of.

More and more people today do not buy in the Han story. The poem is very clear a poem of praising the queen, her outlook, her manner and her virtue, and all these turns to be the huge contrast to her misfortunes, rather than her promiscuity.

A new interpretation is developed in this video: the venue is the funeral of the king. Some evidences are as follows:

  1. 象服 is the utmost grand attir, ascending the throne, king’s wedding and death is the circumstance for this attire most probably.
  2. The 2nd and 3rd paragraph are all about the queen, while the first paragraph is hardly to be considered about queen, it is more alike a grand ceremony on march. 委委佗佗 or 委蛇委蛇 in 召南·羔羊 describe the long lines of people in zigzag like snake(委蛇 has 84 writing varieties, the basic form is by 它”、“也”、“蛇, see detail at http://www.chinanews.com/cul/2013/02-04/4544402.shtml). The comparison of 如山如河 is about the long troop with coffin moving steadily like mountain, calmly slowly like river, way to the cemetery(出殡), isn’t it? The image of mountain and river also give enormous energy and power.
  3. 胡然而天也?胡然而帝也?This is a typical situation in a Chinese funeral :呼天抢地, shout to sky and knock on the ground with own head. 帝 is a borrowed word of 地, this borrow is very common in ancient Chinese literature. The character 帝 has a great chance which was evolved from 地.
  4. The most grand attire but all in white, this is different than other poems in Book of Songs, those outlook/attire depicting are always colorful. All while is also the Chinese funeral dressing code.
  5. 副笄六珈 could be 负梓六驾. This is a bold proposal mainly by the poem writing, the content should be intertextual and antithesis. The first sentence 君子偕老 has no intertextuality and antithesis with jewelry and makeup, which is the current interpretation of 副笄六珈.

鄘风 君子偕老
佚名

君子偕老,副笄六珈。
委委佗佗,如山如河,象服是宜。
子之不淑,云如之何?

玼兮玼兮,其之翟也。
鬒发如云,不屑髢也;
玉之瑱也,象之揥也,扬且之皙也。
胡然而天也?胡然而帝也?

瑳兮瑳兮,其之展也。
蒙彼绉絺,是绁袢也。
子之清扬,扬且之颜也。
展如之人兮,邦之媛也!

CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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