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Confucius - Confucian Canon (1.2 MB)

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Although three of four of these books are traditionally attributed to Confucius (K'ung-tzu, 551-479 B.C.E.) it has been established that he did not write a single word of them they were written down by his students after his death. The Analects come closest to an actual exposition of his philosophy. These works were put into their present form by Chu Hsi in the late twelfth century C.E. These four books were required reading in order to pass the civil service exminations, (started in 1315), which were the gateway to empl... More >>>
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Author:      Confucius
Format:      eBook
Although three of four of these books are traditionally attributed to Confucius (K'ung-tzu, 551-479 B.C.E.) it has been established that he did not write a single word of them they were written down by his students after his death. The Analects come closest to an actual exposition of his philosophy. These works were put into their present form by Chu Hsi in the late twelfth century C.E. These four books were required reading in order to pass the civil service exminations, (started in 1315), which were the gateway to employment in the Imperial bureaucracy. The translations are by James Legge, from his 'Chinese Classics' series. Works traditionally attributed to Confucius, but of uncertain authorship, have an asterisk following his name.

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Confucius (Kong Fuzi or K'ung-fu-tzu, lit. "Master Kong", traditionally September 28, 551 - 479 BC) was a famous Chinese thinker and social philosopher, whose teachings and philosophy have deeply influenced East Asian life and thought.

His philosophy emphasized personal and governmental morality, correctness of social relationships, justice and sincerity. These values gained prominence in China over other doctrines, such as Legalism or Daoism during the Han Dynasty. Confucius' thoughts have been developed into a system of philosophy known as Confucianism. It was introduced to Europe by the Jesuit Matteo Ricci, who was the first to Latinise the name as "Confucius".

His teachings are known primarily through the Analects of Confucius, a collection of "brief aphoristic fragments", which was compiled many years after his death. Modern historians do not believe that any specific documents can be said to have been written by Confucius, but for nearly 2,000 years he was thought to be the editor or author of all the Five Classics such as the Classic of Rites, and the Spring and Autumn Annals.