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The Heptametrical Quatrains Of He Zhu, 1077–95

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Chapter Summary

The historical trend toward the heptametrical Quatrain continues in He Zhu’s contemporaries, although it should be noted that three Song poets born in 1002–8, Mei Yaochen, Ouyang Xiu, and Su Shunqin, diverged from this trend. The author states that if Fanghui had a choice between writing a heptametrical Quatrain that could be sung and writing a lyric that would take advantage of and even extend all the musical and rhythmical resources of that genre, he would write the lyric. Twenty-seven heptametrical Quatrains survive from 1077, when Fanghui was collecting wine taxes in Zhaozhou, through the seventh month of 1082, when he was on his way to Xuzhou. Most of them are solitary pieces. Back in the capital, Fanghui writes only four heptametrical Quatrains before moving on to the mint in Xuzhou in the seventh month of 1082.

Keywords: Fanghui; He Zhu; heptametrical quatrains; Xuzhou



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