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古者聖王之制

9/18/2017

古者聖王之制

古者聖王之制,史在前書過失,工誦箴諫。庶人謗於道, 商旅議於市。

然後君得聞其過失也。聞其過失而改之, 見義而從之, 所以永有天下也。

--《 漢書》卷五

The governments of ancient sage-emperors had systems that recorded errors and mistakes committed by rulers, and court musicians sang adages and aphorisms to remind emperors of the righteous ways of governing. Ordinary folks could be heard muttering complaints on rulers by the roadside, businessmen and travelers were talking about the government's wrong policies and faulty actions in the marketplace. 

Emperors were willing to hear all the comments and were able to correct mistakes, and to follow whatever suggestions that are right and justified. That's why they enjoyed longevity of their monarchies under heaven.

--《Han Shu》, Vol. 5

【作品背景简介】汉书》,又名《前汉书》,中国古代历史著作。东汉 班固所著,是中国第一部纪传体断代史。《漢書》 為中國第一部紀傳體斷代史,《漢書》的記載, 上起劉邦被封為漢王元年(西元前206年),下終王莽地皇四年( 西元23年),以西漢一朝為主,同時亦囊括了四年楚漢之爭, 十五年王莽改制,共二百三十年的史事。全書包括十二「紀」、八「 表」、十「志」、七十「列傳」,凡一百篇,共八十餘萬言。 至唐代顏師古以《漢書》卷帙繁重,便將篇幅較長者分為上、 下卷或上、中、下卷,成為現行本《漢書》一百二十卷。《漢書》 中所載漢武帝以前之紀、傳,多用《史記》舊文,武帝以後之史事, 則為新撰。汉书虽沿用史记旧文,却补充了大量新的资料, 因此比史记更显得有史料价值。班固(東漢光武帝建武十( 公元32)年-東漢和帝永元四(公元92)年),字孟堅, 扶風安陵(今陝西咸陽)人,东汉史学家班彪之子,东汉历史学家。

(原载《海外南开人》118期,6/27/2017)

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