James Legge's metrical Book of Poetry


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It is not generally known that James Legge's many translations and interpretations of the Chinese classics include three different versions of the Shijing, the Book of Poetry. After presenting the salient features of his first (1871) and third (1879) free-verse translations, this paper gives a descriptive evaluation of Legge's metrical version (1876). It argues that the metrical version manifests a bold new way of translating these classical poems, reflecting some of the important sensitivities in poetic translation which twentieth-century theories of translation have articulated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-85
Number of pages22
JournalBulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1997

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History


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