Po Chü-i

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Po Chü-i

(bô jü-ē), 772–846, Chinese poet. He occupied several important government posts, rising to the presidency of the imperial board of war in 841. He wrote over 3,000 poems, brief, topical verses expressed in very simple, clear language. Perhaps his most noted poem is the Song of Everlasting Regret (806), which recounts the sufferings of Emperor Ming Huang on the murder of his concubine by rebels. The poem figures prominently in The Tale of Genji, the 10th-century Japanese novel by Murasaki Shikibu; Po's work gained wide popularity throughout East Asia. He continued to write despite partial paralysis and enjoyed great fame during his lifetime.


See A. Waley, The Life and Times of Po Chü-i (1949); E. Feifel, Po Chü-i as a Censor (1961).

Po Chü-i


Born, 772; died, 846. Chinese poet. Born into an impoverished aristocratic family.

Po occupied high government posts and was ruler of Chiangchou (present-day Ch’iungchiang). He was famous for being a lover of the people. He wrote about 3,000 poems. The first collection of Po Chü-i’s works was published during his lifetime. Po’s lyrics are characterized by their love of life and of humanity. In his letters, he pointed out the role that literature plays in life. He wrote the famous long narrative poems Song of Unending Sorrow and Lute. Po wrote verse exposes in which he criticized corruption, feudal lawlessness, and war: these included ten poems under the title Ch’in Melodies, and 50 New Popular Songs. Yuan Chen, Liu Yü-hsi, and other outstanding poets gathered around Po. In Chinese poetry he ranks in importance with the great eighth-century poets Li Po and Tu Fu.


In Russian translation: Stikhi. Moscow, 1958.
“Pesn’ o beskonechnoi toske.” In Vostok, collection 1. Moscow, 1935.
“Liutnia.” In Antologiia kitaiskoi liriki VII-IX vv. Moscow-Petrograd, 1923.


Eidlin, L. Z. “Iz tanskoi poezii (Bo Tsziui-i).” Tr. Voennogo in-ta inostrannykh iazykov, 1946, no. 2.


References in periodicals archive ?
A direct reference to a Tang Dynasty poem by Bo Juyi, the title may be seen as an allusion to the travails of the putative main character, Wang Qiyao, but it is the subtitle, "A Novel of Shanghai," that names the tale's true center--the city itself.
IN A LETTER TO HIS FRIEND Bo Juyi [CHINESE CHARACTERS NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] in 815, the poet Yuan Zhen [CHINESE CHARACTERS NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] described a collection of "over eight hundred" of his own poems that he had presented to an official visiting his area a few years earlier, in 812.
Scholarship on the literary and political thought of Yuan Zhen has long lagged behind that on his friend and contemporary, Bo Juyi (772-846), who is regarded as a more important contributor to mid-Tang intellectual life.
7) No preface exists for the Yuanshi Changqing ji, though surely there must have been one, probably written by Bo Juyi.
After paraphrasing Yuan's letter to Bo Juyi, Chen says,
As mentioned above, Hong Gua, in his colophon to the 1168 edition of Yuan's works, cites Yuan Zhen's own description of his "ten categories" of poetry described in the 815 letter to Bo Juyi, the last category of which was, in fact, the "poems of seductive allure.
In 802, the next reliable date we have for his biography, Yuan passed the bacui [CHINESE CHARACTERS NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] examination along with eight other candidates, including Bo Juyi.
30) However, we have no preface or other presentation document to Li Jingjian for the 812 collection, only Yuan Zhen's letter to Bo Juyi about the collection, a letter that was written three years later, on Yuan's transfer to a better position.
As he passed through the capital to collect the appropriate posting documents, Yuan met Bo Juyi and gave him copies of the poems he had collected in 812 for Li Jingjian and added two hundred more pieces that he had composed since that date.
Yuan Zhen begins his letter as a literary autobiography, sketching life at the capital when he arrived as a young man, his pivotal encounters with the works of Chen Zi'ang and Du Fu, and his association in Chang'an with the poet Yang Juyuan and, more importantly, with Bo Juyi himself.
To his friends Li Jingjian and Bo Juyi, Yuan Zhen perhaps felt free to show the less polished or more risky works; in political contexts, Yuan was more circumspect.
45) Second, he had to explain the absence of many of the poems that had won fame for him and Bo Juyi in the Yuanhe period.