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and that given to the chief of the Māng family.” Finally he said, “I am old; I cannot use his doctrines.”" These observations were made directly to Confucius, or came to his hearing.” It was not consistent with his self-respect to remain longer in Tsoe, and he returned to Loo.” 6. Returned to Loo, he remained for the long period of about fifteen years without being engaged in any official neomans without employment. It was a time, indeed, of office in Loo, great disorder. The Duke Chaou conB.C. 515–501. tinued a refugee in Tsoe, the government being in the hands of the great Families, up to his death in B.C. 509, on which event the rightful heir was set aside, and another member of the ducal house, known to us by he title of Ting, substituted in his place. The ruling authority of the principality became thus still more enfeebled than it had been before, and, on the other hand, the chiefs of the Ke, the Shuh, and the Mäng, could hardly keep their ground against their own officers. Of those latter the two most conspicuous were Yang Hoo, called also Yang Ho, and Kung-shan Fuh-jaou. At one time Ke Hwan, the most powerful of the chiefs, was kept a prisoner by Yang Hoo, and was obliged to make terms with him in order to secure his liberation. Confucius would give his countenance to none, as he disapproved of all, and he studiously kept aloof from them. Of how he comported himself among them we have a specimen in the incident related in the Analects, XVII, i.-“Yang Ho wished to see Confucius, but Confucius would not go to see him. On this, he sent a present of a pig to Confucius, who, having chosen a time when Ho was not at home, went to pay his respects for the gift. He met him, however, on the way. “Come, let me speak with you,” said the officer. ‘Can he be called benevolent, who keeps his jewel in his bosom, and leaves his country to confusion ?’ Confucius replied, ‘No.” ‘’Can he be called wise, who is anxious to be engaged in public employment, and yet is constantly losing the opportunity of being so : " Confucius again said, ‘No.’ The other added, ‘The days and months are passing away; the years do not wait for us.” Confucius said, ‘ Right; I will go into office.’” Chinese writers are eloquent in their praise of the sage for the combination of propriety, complaisance, and firmness, which they see in his behaviour in this matter. To myself there seems nothing remarkable in it but a somewhat questionable dexterity. But it was well for the fame of Confucius that his time was not occupied during those years with official services. He turned them to better account, prosecuting his researches into the poetry, history, ceremonies, and music of the empire. Many disciples continued to resort to him, and the legendary writers tell us how he employed their services in digesting the results of his studies. I must repeat, however, that several of them, whose names are most famous, such as Tsáng Sin, were as yet children, and Min Sun was not born till B.C. 500. To this period we must refer the almost single instance which we have of the manner of Confucius’ intercourse with his son Le. “Have you heard any lessons from your father different from what we have all heard P” asked one of the disciples once of Le. “No,” said Le. “He was standing alone once, when I was passing through the court below with hasty steps, and said to me, ‘Have you read the Odes?” On my replying, ‘Not yet,” he added, “If you do not learn the Odes, you will not be fit to converse with.” Another day, in the same place and the same way, he said to me, ‘Have you read the rules of Propriety : ” On my replying, ‘Not yet,” he added, ‘If you do not learn the rules of Propriety, your character cannot be established.’ I have heard only these two things from him.” The disciple was delighted, and observed, “I asked one thing, and I have got three things. I have heard about the Odes; I have heard about the rules of Propriety. I have also heard that the superior man maintains a distant reserve towards his son.” " I can easily believe that this distant reserve was the rule which Confucius followed generally in his treatment of his son. A stern dignity is the quality which a father has to maintain upon his system. It is not to be without the element of kindness, but that must never go beyond the line of propriety. There is too little room left for the play and development of natural affection. The divorce of his wife must also have taken place during these years, if it ever took place at all, which is a disputed point. The curious reader will find the question discussed in the notes on the second Book of the Le Ke. The evidence inclines, I think, against the supposition that Confucius did put his wife away. When she died, at a period subsequent to the present, Le kept onweeping aloud for her after the period for such a demonstration of grief had expired, when Confucius sent a message to him that his sorrow must be subdued, and the obedient son dried his tears." We are glad to know that on one occasion—the death of his favourite disciple, Yen Hwuy-the tears of Confucius himself would flow over and above the measure of propriety.” 7. We come to the short period of Confucius' official He holds office, life. In the year B.C. 501, things had come B.C. 500–496. to a head between the chiefs of the three Families and their ministers, and had resulted in the defeat of the latter. In B.C. 500, the resources of Yang Hoo were exhausted, and he fled into Tsoe, so that the State was delivered from its greatest troubler, and the way was made more clear for Confucius to go into office, should an opportunity occur. It soon presented itself. Towards the end of that year he was made chief magistrate of the town of Chung-too.” Just before he received this appointment, a circumstance occurred of which we do not well know what to make. When Yang-hoo fled into Tsoe, Kung-shan Fuhjaou, who had been confederate with him, continued to maintain an attitude of rebellion, and held the city of Pe against the Ke family. Thence he sent a message to Confucius inviting him to join him, and the sage seemed ! See the Le Ke, II. Pt. I. i. 27. * Ana. XI. ix. * Amiot says this was “la ville meme ou le Souverain tenoit sa Cour” (Vie de Confucius, p. 147). He is followed of course by Thornton and Pauthier. My reading has not shown me that such was the case. In the notes to K'ang-he's edition of the “Five King,” Le Ke, II. Pt. I. iii.4, it is so inclined to go that his disciple Tsze-loo remonstrated with him, saying, “Indeed you cannot go why must you think of going to see Kung-sham : * Confucius replied, “Can it be without some reason that he has invited me ! If any one employ me, may I not make an eastern Chow *** The upshot, however, was that he did not go, and I cannot suppose that he had ever any serious intention of doing so. Amid the general gravity of his intercourse with his followers, there gleam out a few instances of quiet pleasantry, when he amused himself by playing with their notions about him. This was probably one of them. As magistrate of Chung-too he produced a marvellous reformation of the manners of the people in a short time. According to the “Family Sayings,” he enacted rules for the nourishing of the living, and all observances to the dead. Different food was assigned to the old and the young, and different burdens to the strong and the weak. Males and females were kept apart from each other in the streets. A thing dropt on the road was not picked up. There was no fraudulent carving of vessels. Inner coffins were made four inches thick, and the outer Ones five. Graves were made on the high grounds, no mounds being raised over them, and no trees planted about them. Within twelve months, the princes of the States all about wished to imitate his style of administration. The Duke Ting, surprised at what he saw, asked whether his rules could be employed to govern a whole State, and Confucius told him that they might be applied to the whole empire. On this the duke appointed him assistant-superintendent of Works,” in which capacity he surveyed the lands of the State, and made many improvements in agriculture. From this he was quickly made minister of Crime, and the appointment was enough to put an end to crime. There was no necessity to put the penal laws in execution. No offenders showed themselves. These indiscriminating eulogies are of little value. One incident, related in the annotations of Tso-k’ew on the Ts’un Tsoew, commends itself at once to our belief, as in harmony with Confucius’ character. The chief of the Ke, pursuing with his enmity the Duke Chaou, even after his death, had placed his grave apart from the graves of his predecessors; and Confucius surrounded the ducal cemetery with a ditch so as to include the solitary resting-place, boldly telling the chief that he did it to hide his disloyalty. But he signalized himself most of all, in B.C. 499, by his behaviour at an interview between the dukes of Loo and Tsoe, at a place called Shih-koe, and Kéâ-kuh, in the present district of Lae-woo, in the department of Taegan. Confucius was present as master of ceremonies on the part of Loo, and the meeting was professedly pacific. The two princes were to form a covenant of alliance. The principal officer on the part of Tsoe, however, despising Confucius as “a man of ceremonies, without courage,” had advised his sovereign to make the duke of Loo a prisoner, and for this purpose a band of the half-savage original inhabitants of the place advanced with weapons to the stage where the two dukes were met. Confucius understood the scheme, and said to the opposite party, “Our two princes are met for a pacific object. For you to bring a band of Savage vassals to disturb the meeting with their weapons, is not the way in which Tsoe can expect to give law to the princes of the empire. These barbarians have nothing to do with our Great Flowery land. Such vassals may not interfere with our covenant. Weapons are out of place at such a meeting. As before the spirits, such conduct is unpropitious. In point of virtue, it is contrary to right. As between man and man, it is not polite.” The duke of Tsoe ordered the disturbers off, but Confucius withdrew, carrying the duke of Loo with him. The business proceeded, notwithstanding, and when the words of the alliance were being read on the part of Tsoe, “So be it to Loo, if it contribute not 300 chariots of war to the help of Tsoe, when its army goes across its borders,” a messenger from Confucius added,— “And so it be to us, if we obey your orders, unless you return to us the fields on the south of the Wän.” At the conclusion of the ceremonies, the prince of Tsoe wanted to give a grand entertainment, but Confucius demonstrated that such a thing would be contrary to the established rules of propriety, his real object being to keep his sove
* Ana. XVIII, iii.
* Sze-ma Ts’een makes the first observation to have been addressed directly to Confucius.
* According to the above account Confucius was only once, and for a portion of two years, in Tsoe. For the refutation of contrary accounts, See Keang Yung's Life of the Sage.
simply said—“Chung-too, -the name of a town of Loo. It afterwards belonged to Ts’e, when it was called P'ing-luh.”
1 Ana, XVII. v.
* This office, however, was held by the chief of the Māng family. We must understand that Confucius was only an assistant to him, or, perhaps acted for him.