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Chang Yü-shu

Chang Yü-shu 張玉書 (T. 素存 H. 潤甫), July 22, 1642-1711, July 2, official and scholar, was a native of Tan-t'u, Kiangsu, second son of Chang Chiu-chêng 張九徵 (T. 公選 H. 湘曉, 1618-1684, chin-shih of 1647 and director of education of Honan in 1664-67). Chang Yü-shu himself became a chin-shih in 1661, with appointment as bachelor in the Hanlin Academy. Three years later he was made a compiler, remaining at that post for twelve years. In 1676 he was appointed a tutor in the Imperial Academy. His wife died in the same year and he never remarried. In 1679 he and Yeh Fang-ai [q.v.] were appointed director-generals of the Historiographical Board which compiled the History of the Ming Dynasty (Ming-shih) with the aid of scholars who had passed the po-hsüeh hung-tz'ŭ examination. In the following year he became a Hanlin expositor and in 1681 a sub-chancellor of the Grand Secretariat. Early in 1684 he was concurrently vice-president of the Board of Ceremonies and chancellor of the Hanlin Academy. He retired in 1684 to mourn the death of his father, but was recalled in 1687 to become president of the Board of Punishments. Early in 1689 he was transferred to the presidency of the Board of Ceremonies and was sent to inspect river conservancy in Kao-yu, Kiangsu. The next year he was made a Grand Secretary and concurrently president of the Board of Revenue. In the winter of 1691 he was again sent to inspect the work of river conservancy in Kiangsu. In 1696 he accompanied Emperor Shêng-tsu to Mongolia on the latter's expedition against Galdan [q.v.] and in the following year was appointed a director-general for the compilation of the official history of the campaigns against the Eleuths, entitled 平定朔漠方略 P'ing-ting Shuo-mo fang-lüeh, completed in 1708. The name of his studio, Sung-yin t'ang 松蔭堂, was conferred on him by the emperior to commemorate the death of his (Chang Yü-shu's) mother in 1698. He retired in that year to mourn for her but was asked in 1700 to resume his duties at the capital. Three years later he accompanied the emperor on the latter's fourth tour of the south. Later he served as director-general for the compilation of the two great dictionaries, the P'ei-wên yun fu (see under Ts'ao Yin), and the 康熙字典, K'ang-hsi tzu-tien, commissioned in 1710 and completed in 1716. He accompanied the emperor to Jehōl in 1711, but died on his arrival there, at the age of 70 (sui). He was canonized as Wên-chên 文貞.

In memory of his services the emperor two years later raised the rank of his son, Chang I-shao 張逸少 (T. 天門, chin-shih of 1694), from a compiler to a reader in the Academy. In the reign of the succeeding emperor Chang Yü-shu's name was entered in the Temple of Eminent Statesmen. His collected prose works, entitled 張文貞集 Chang Wên-chên chi (also called 力行齋集 Li-hsing chai chi), 12 chüan, was copied into the Imperial Manuscript Library (see under Chi Yün). It was printed in 1792 and contains among other items a number of biographies and epitaphs of prominent men of his day, including Manchus. His contemporaries characterized him as modest and cautious, and very sparing in the use of food. A volume of poems by Chang Yü-shu in his own handwriting was reproduced in 1935 by the Kuo-hsüeh Library, Nanking, under the title 京江相公詩稿真蹟 Ching-chiang Hsiang-kung shih-kao chên-chi. Appended to this work is a collection of Chang's poems copied from various anthologies, entitled Chang Wên-chên kung shih-ch'ao 公詩鈔.

[ 1/273/la; 2/30/20b; 3/9/7a; 7/7/2b; Wang Shih-chên [q.v.], Ch'ên-kan yü<> hua (1709) 2/3a; TanVu hsien chih (1879) 26/26b; ibid. 26/22b; 3/206/ 19a for Chang Chiu-chên; Ting Ch'uan-ching 丁傳靖, Chang Wên-chên kung nien-p'u (not consulted).]