Sima Xiangru

Sima Xiangru (c. 179-117 BCE)

“To think only of one’s own pleasure before sufficient benefits have been bestowed upon others; to ignore the common people and neglect the government of the nation, merely because one is greedy for a catch of pheasants and haresthis no truly benevolent ruler would do!”

  • An excerpt from Sima Xiangru’s Shanglin fu included in the Records of the Grand Historian (Shi Ji, 117) by Sima Qian. Translated by Burton Watson (Columbia University Press, 1993).

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