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The Record Of Precious Swords

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Chapter Summary

Swords held a special place in the culture of the ancient kingdoms of Wu and Yue. Legends about swords were recorded here far earlier and in much greater detail than any other part of China, and this reflects both the development of sophisticated sword-making technology in this region of China, and the importance of these blades within the culture of the ancient south. Both Wu and Yue were famous among their contemporaries for the quantity and quality of the blades that they produced. This chapter of the Yuejue shu, describes a conversation between King Goujian of Yueand one of his retainers, a man named Xue Zhu. It concerns an anonymous king of Chu's appreciation of fine swords from Wu and Yue, and the efforts that he goes to in order to persuade two master craftsmen, Gan Jiang and Master Ou Ye to make three blades for him.

Keywords: China; Goujian; swords; Wu; Xue Zhu; Yue; Yuejue shu



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