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Myths and Legends of China
From the author: My aim, after summarizing the sociology of the Chinese as a prerequisite to the understanding of their ideas and sentiments, and dealing as fully as possible, consistently with limitations of space (limitations which have necessitated the presentation of a very large and intricate topic in a highly compressed form), with the philosophy of the subject, has been to set forth in English dress those myths which may be regarded as the accredited representatives of Chinese mythology - those which live in the minds of the people and are referred to most frequently in their literature, not those which are merely diverting without being typical or instructive - in short, a true, not a distorted image. The chief literary sources of Chinese myths are the Li tai shên hsien t'ung chien, in thirty-two volumes, the Shên hsien lieh chuan, in eight volumes, the Fêng shên yen i, in eight volumes, and the Sou shên chi, in ten volumes. In writing the following pages I have translated or paraphrased largely from these works. I have also consulted and at times quoted from the excellent volumes on Chinese Superstitions by Père Henri Doré, comprised in the valuable series Variétés Sinologiques, published by the Catholic Mission Press at Shanghai. The native works contained in the Ssu K'u Ch'üan Shu, one of the few public libraries in Peking, have proved useful for purposes of reference. This is, so far as I know, the only monograph on Chinese mythology in any non-Chinese language. Nor do the native works include any scientific analysis or philosophical treatment of their myths.
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