SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Liu, Tsun-Yan (1957) The Authorship of the "Feng Shen Yen I". PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

PDF - Submitted Version
Download (244MB) | Preview


The "Feng Shen Yen I" is a novel written by an unknown writer in the later part of the 16th century (Ming dynasty). No modern scholar specializing in the history of Chinese literature, was able to identify the author of this novel. Quite recently a certain edition(Shu Tsai-yang's) printed in the Ming dynasty was found by Prof. Sun K'ai-ti who discovered that the name of the author appears at the beginning of his 2nd vol. which reads "edited by Hsu Chung-lin, the Old Hermit of Chung-shan". But most of other scholars, including Dr. Hu Shih, Dr. Tung Kang and myself, doubted this very much, and in 1935, we discovered from other sources that this novel was compiled by a Taoist Lu Hsi-hsing in the reign of the Emperor Shih-tsung(Chia-ching) of the Ming dynasty. Yet the evidences given are again not enough because we knew only a little of the life of this author. I discovered later a very rare Ming edition of the work of one of Lu Hsi-hsing's contemporaries, Tsung Ch'en, and from it I have found out that there might be a counterpart to Lu Hsi-hsing in the novel who is named Lu Ya, the wonderful Taoist. Investigating again into other historical and geographical materials I can compose a vague but true biography of Lu, and by examining most of the poems in the novel I find they resemble to a great extent the life of its author. The discovery of Wu Wang Fa Chou P'ing-hua and Chuan 1 of the Lieh Kuo Chih Chuan in Japan serves to prove that Lu's novel was written based upon the earlier storytellers' work, but he wrote it in a different style, and enriched very much the con-tent. From the comparison made between the earlier materials and the novel, I have found that Lu added something to its content which again proves that only Lu would be qualified to do so. In my thesis I shall give detailed evidence about this discovery, illustrating which parts are the earlier scholars' or other contemporaries' work, and which parts are, my own contribution.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2020 17:38

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item