S2E07-Double Sorrow-人琴俱亡

Here’s another musical chengyu with an injection of sadness. It’s a theme that has inspired movies, plays, and every kind of literature. When your eye catches an object that reminds you of someone important in your life who had passed away. It also features some literati megastars from Chinese cultural history.


Rén Qín Jù Wáng 人琴俱亡 The Man and the Zither Have Perished

Rén 人 a person

Qín 琴 a Chinese lute or zither

Duì Niú Tán Qín   对牛弹琴   play a lute to an ox.

   俱 all, entirely, together

wáng 亡 to die, perish

chūzì 出自 derivation, come from, originate from

Nan Bei Chao   南北朝    the Southern and Northern Dynasties Period – 420-589

Eastern Jin 东晋 Second half of Jin Dynasty (317-420) when the capital was at Jiànkāng   建康 Capital of Eastern Jin (modern day Nanjing)

Shìshuō Xīnyǔ   A New Account of the Tales of the World compiled by Liu Yiqing

Liú Yìqìng  刘义庆 Liu Song Dynasty scholar, compiled the Shi Shuo Xin Yu.

Liú Sòng   刘宋 first of the Southern Dynasties

Wáng Xīzhī 王羲之 the Eastern Jin Dynasty from 321-379

Lántíng Xù 兰亭序  “Preface to the Poems Collected from the Orchid Pavilion”

Shàoxīng 绍兴   City in Zhejiang famous for its wine and legacy of scholars

Tàizōng emperor 唐太宗   co-founder of the Tang Dynasty, a.k.a. Li Shimin

Shū Shèng  书圣 the Saint of calligraphy (Wang Xizhi)

Wáng Xiànzhī 王献之 Younger son of Wang Xizhi and his equal in calligraphy

Wáng Huīzhī 王徽之 Older brother of Wang Xianzhi

Rén Qín   人琴   the man and the lute or zither

俱 both, together

wáng 亡   died

Zhèjiāng Province 浙江省 Rich coastal province


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