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The Book of Poetry, tr. by James Legge, [1876], at

p. 408


The Sung Kao; narrative. Celebrating the appointment by King Hsüan of a relative to be the marquis of Shên, and defender of the southern border of the kingdom, with the arrangements made for his entering on his charge.

1How grand and high, with hugest bulk, arise
Those southern hills whose summits touch the skies!
Down from them came a spirit to the earth,
And to the sires of Fu and Shên gave birth.
In those two states our Chou a bulwark has,
O’er which the southern foemen dare not pass;
And all its states they screen, and through them spread
Lessons of virtue, by themselves displayed.

2Famed for his merit was Shên's present chief.
The king with Hsieh planned to enlarge his fief.
There, as his sires elsewhere had been, should he
To all the southern states a pattern be.
The earl of Chao got charge there to provide
The capital, where Shên's chief should preside,
And o’er the south a powerful influence gain.
There too his sons that influence should maintain. p. 409

3Thus to the chief the king gave his command:—
"A pattern be to all the southern land.
Your center Hsieh, go from it onwards, till
Your merit all that southern sphere shall fill."
Chao's earl was charged the new lands to define,
And by Chou's rules fit revenue assign.
The master of Shên's household orders got,
To move betimes the harem to the spot.

4The earl of Chao thus the foundation cleared,
On which the chief's great merit should be reared.
The city's walls he built, and then went on
To build the temple. This work grandly done,
The chief receives four steeds, a noble team,
Whose breasthooks ’mid their trappings brightly gleam.

5Those steeds were with a car of state well matched,
And then the king from court the chief dispatched. p. 410
"Your residence," he said, "has been my care.
The south I chose. Quick thither now repair.
And take this noble mace, which I confer,
The symbol of your rank. Go, uncle, go;
Protect the southern lands from every foe."

6Soon now the chief his way took from the north.
The king in Mei the parting feast set forth.
Thence, through the capital and southward bound,
The chief of Shên in Hsieh at last was found.
When Chao's earl the country had defined,
And by Chou's rules the revenue assigned,
Stores of provisions had been laid aside,
For the chief's rapid journey to provide.

7Chariots and thronging footmen were arrayed;
With martial pomp the chief his entrance made.
The states of Chou rejoice. They haste to bring
Their warm and joyous greetings to the king.
"In your great uncle," thus they say, "you've found
A bulwark strong. Grandly is Shên renowned!
In peace and war a pattern good will he,
Throughout our regions, to your chieftains be." p. 411

8With virtue clad, the chief of Shên shines bright;—
Though mild, not weak; though strong, yet ever right.
Our myriad states his powerful sway shall own,
And with their praises his grand merit crown.
Chi-fu presents this song, well meant, well made;—
Accept, O chief, the tribute I have paid!

Next: VI. Chêng Min