Author: changabula

Chinese Role Models and Heroes [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2007-2-8 01:57:32 |Display all floors
Bi Sheng
(Inventor of Movable Type Printing)

At about 1045~1058, the moveable type was invented by Bi Sheng in China. Bi Sheng was born in Shexian County and moved to the capital of China, Bianliang during the Former Song Dynasty (960-1127).

He invented it on the basis of reforming engraving type. At first he sawed wood into small pieces, then he lettered every small piece of wood to make movable Chinese characters. According to what charceters an article needed, he arranged the needed characters on an iron board. After printing, all these characters could be reused.  

It did not take him much time to make 3000 characters in common use. Because it is hard to find a character from the whole characters, Sheng though of a method. He put the charcters in dozens of wood plates by their first parts of pronunciation.

At a later time, Sheng also made movable characters from earth successfully. To be more efficient, he prepared two iron board. When one was for pinting, the other one could be used to arrange characters for next page or other articles. When the former printing was finished, people could used the latter one, which was already arranged, to continue printing. Then the characters on the former board were hitted to be moved down for reusing. By using the two boards alternately, people could print faster.

Bi Sheng prepared several movable characters for every character, even scores for some used very frequently, because sometime several were needed for the same character on one page. If a uncommon word was required, he could letter it very quickly and put it in a kiln to bake. This was also very convenient.

Compared to the printing in modern society, What Bi Sheng invented was simple, but it already had the main traits of movable typing: making movable letters, typesetting and printing.

Movable type is a reform in the history of printing. It has contributed much to human civilization. About 400 years later, Gutenberge invented the machine to make use of movable type.

  1. http://www.huangshantour.com/english/SmallClass.asp?typeid=28&BigClassID=50&smallclassid=418
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(see also:
  1. http://www.cgan.com/english/english/cpg/engcp20.htm
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Post time 2007-2-8 02:01:05 |Display all floors
Fang La
(Leader of Peasant Upring)

Fang La (?--1121), a native of Shexian County, was born into a poor family.

In the year of 1120, he led poor peole to uprise in Qixian Village of Shenxian County to fight against the brutal supression and exploitaion of the time. The farmers troupe moved to Luzhou later.

With his leadship, the troupe captured 52 counties in provinces of Zhejian, Jiangsu, Jiangxi and Anhui in a short period of time.

The success of the uprising led to the establishment of a regime called Yongle.

Fangla appointed himself as the Saint Father. In the summer of 1121, the movement was supressed and Fangla himself was killed in a battle.

The event was recorded in The History of The Song Dynasty.

  1. http://www.huangshantour.com/english/ReadNews.asp?NewsID=779
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Post time 2007-2-8 02:07:17 |Display all floors
Zhu Xi

The Song Neo-Confucian philosophers, finding a certain purity in the originality of the ancient classical texts, wrote commentaries on them. The most influential of these philosophers was Zhu Xi ( b1130-1200), whose synthesis of Confucian thought and Buddhist, Taoist, and other ideas became the official imperial ideology from late Song times to the late nineteenth century.

As incorporated into the examination system, Zhu Xi's philosophy evolved into a rigid official creed, which stressed the one-sided obligations of obedience and compliance of subject to ruler, child to father, wife to husband, and younger brother to elder brother. The effect was to inhibit the societal development of premodern China, resulting both in many generations of political, social, and spiritual stability and in a slowness of cultural and institutional change up to the nineteenth century.

Neo-Confucian doctrines also came to play the dominant role in the intellectual life of Korea, Vietnam, and Japan.

  1. http://www.huangshantour.com/english/ReadNews.asp?NewsID=751
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Post time 2007-2-8 02:10:55 |Display all floors
Dai Zhen

One of the most important Qing philosophers is Dai Zhen (1724-1777), who again tried to liberate Confucian thinking from Taoist or Buddhist influences and went back to the sources of the Confucian Classics to correct the errors of Song and Ming philosophers.

While Zhu Xi and late Ming philosophers like Liu Zongzhou (1578-1645) and Huang Daozhou (1585-1646) had assumed that man follows in his actings only the universal order (li ) and not his own will (yu ), Dai Zhen saw that both universal order and human will exist side by side.

The human will is an expression of man's temperament and feelings (qing) and naturally depend on the universal order.

Human will is nothing else than a subjective part of the universal order.

Goodness (shan) of the human character is a completion of the virtues humanity (ren), righteousness (yi ) and social etiquette (li ), it naturally includes wisdom (zhi), courage (yong), loyalty (zhong), trust (xin) and benevolence (shu).

All these things are basic elements of the Heavenly virtue (Tian de).

  1. http://www.huangshantour.com/english/ReadNews.asp?NewsID=698
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Post time 2007-2-8 02:18:21 |Display all floors
Zhan Tianyou

Zhan Tianyou (1861-1919), a national hero for his role in building China's railroad system, was born in 1861 in southern China's Guangdong Province and died in 1919. As the chief designer of the first railway project built by Chinese engineers, he was widely regarded as the father of China's railroad.

In 1904, the Imperial Qing decided to build a railway between Beijing and Zhang Jiakou.

Both the Great Britain and Russia showed their interest in the project.

In face of the fierce competition betweem the two powers, the Qing Government didn't dare to offend any one of them. As a result, it decided to launch the project itself. In 1905, Zhan Tianyou was hired as the chief engineer. Western powers laughed at the decision: "China hasn't seen the birth of such an engineer who is capable of building this railway."

Against heavy odds, Zhan Tianyou ovecame a series of technical obstacles and eventually succeeded in constructing the first China-made railway in 1909. His success not only opened a new page in the history of Chinese railway but also boosted Chinese people's self-confidence.

After the Imperial Qing was toppled, Zhan Tianyou played an important role in the building of the new Republic.

Zhan helped build the first Chinese constructed railroad-the Beijing-Zhangjiakou Line from 1905 to 1909. He designed a double-pronged rail system and employed the "shaft construction method" to excavate tunnels. His contributions to railroad construction on a particularly tricky section of the line have inspired engineers and workers ever since.

Zhan Tianyou (1861-1919) was born in Nanhai. He went to the United States to study in 1872, and he was the first student to study abroad at the official fees in modern history of China. In June 1878 he was enrolled into Civil Engineering Department of Yale University in railway engineering and he was graduated with bachelor degree. In 1881, he returned to China after graduation and went to Fuzhou Mawei Ship Affair School for remediation. He ever participated in the Sino-France Mawei Sea War. Later he worked as a teacher in Mawei Ship Affair School, Guangzhou Boxue School, Guangdong Haitu Water and Land Force School. In 1888, he was appointed as the Engineer of China Railway Company and attented in building Jin-yu Railwa. In 1894 he was elected as the member of British Engineering Research Society. In 1900 he was appointed as the Engineer of Ping(xiang) Li(ling) Railway. In 1902 he was appointed as the Chief Engineer of Xinyi Railway. In 1905 he was appointed as Chief Engineer of Jingzhang Railway, in charge of building Jingzhang Railway.

He invented the train automatic hook, who was the first person to design railway in China.

In 1909, after completion of the railway, he was awarded the Engineering Jinshi by the Qing Dynasty. Later he was appointed as the Chief of Yuehan Railway, Supervisor of Yuechuan Railway and Director of China Engineer Association. He was ever appointed as the China Technical Representative in negotiating with Czar Russia for Zhongdong Railway to argue for road right. In April 1919 he died in illness in Hankou. His works include "Jingzhang Railway Engineering Summary".

  1. http://www.huangshantour.com/english/ReadNews.asp?NewsID=753
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[ Last edited by changabula at 2007-2-8 07:20 AM ]
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Post time 2007-2-8 02:20:30 |Display all floors
Huangshan Binhong

Huang Binhong was born in Zhejiang province to an artistic family.

His grandfather, Huang Fengliu (dates unknown), had been an artist of some repute, and Huang was placed under the tutelage of a local painter, Chen Chunfan (dates unknown), as a young boy.

In adulthood, Huang was involved with the arts through many channels. In addition to being a prolific painter, Huang taught at art schools in Beijing and Shanghai and contributed his vast scholarship to many art books and journals, including the Meishu congshu compendium.

His intellectual interests in art history were an important source of inspiration for his own paintings, as were his extensive travels around the different regions of China.

After the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949, Huang was appointed as Vice-Chairman of the East China Branch of the Chinese Artist's Association, and in 1953 he was awarded the title "Outstanding Painter of the Chinese People." Huang died in 1955 in Hangzhou, where a museum has been built to honor his accomplishments
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Post time 2007-2-8 02:27:43 |Display all floors
Wang Ji

Shishan Medical Records was written by Wang Ji, an important forerunner of the Xin'an medicine school. Wang Ji (1463-1539), born in Qimen, practised medicine for tens of years and gained such a popularity for his excellent art of healing and medical virtues that a patient would become much better when he overheard Wang's voice.

All the experience and findings of his medical career were transferred to his Shishan Medical Records, Collection of Materin Mdeion, Treatment of Smallpox, and other medical books, covering clinical therapy and theoretical studies. As important reference books for the medical people of later generations.

His works have enriched the treasure-house of the traditional Chinese medicine.
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