Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Analects of Confucius

Analects (論語 Pinyin: Lnyǔ), or Analects of Confucius, written in twenty chapters, is thought to be a composition of the late Spring and Autumn Period. It is undoubtly the most influential text in East Asian intellectual history, which collects maxims and short discussions between Confucius and his disciples. Most of them take sense in an historically well defined context.

It is within this work that most of the basic framework regarding Confucian values such as humaneness (仁), rightousness (義), filial piety (孝), and propriety (禮) is uncovered.

Chapter XI is dedicated to Confucius' detailed behaviors in different daily activities and this has been pointed at by Voltaire and Ezra Pound to show how much he was human, not god, not even a saint. Simon Leys, who translated recently the Analects in French and English, says that this book is maybe the first in human history to describe the life of a man.

There are various theories regarding its compilation, but it is obvious that it is somewhat of a patchwork, assembled over a period of time, but the core of the book could be attributed to the second generation disciples.

These Analects, with the other Four Books, is part of the foundational texts of Confucianism.

See also

External links