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Lecture on Yuan Zhen The Summer Palace by Professor Chan Low San

Yuan Zhen The Summer Palace
In the faded old imperial palace,
Peonies are red, but no one comes to see them….
The ladies-in-waiting have grown white-haired
Debating the pomps of Emperor Xuanzong.
Translated by Witter Bynner (1929)

Yuan Zhen (779 – 831)
courtesy name Weizhi, was an important Chinese writer and poet. He and his friend Bai Juyi together developed their own poetic style.

Chan Low San, former professor of Chinese literature at several universities in Hong Kong.

Cantonese preserves the pronunciation of the official language of the Tang dynasty. Tang poetry rhymes in Cantonese as was originally intended.