The Qin scholar addicted to antiques

Master 0sifu Story The Qin scholar addicted to antiques

Master 0sifu Story: The Qin scholar addicted to antiques

In the Qin Dynasty, there was a scholar addicted to antiques. He was so fond of collecting them that he would buy them no matter how costly they were.



One day, a man came to his door to peddle a worn-out straw mat. He said to the Qin scholar: “In those years, Ai Gong of the State of Lu gave a seat to Confucius to inquire about political affairs. This was the very straw mat on which Confucius had sat.”



Overjoyed to hear this, the Qin scholar believed it to be true. So he exchanged the land near his manor for this worn-out straw mat.



A few days later, another man came to peddle a walking stick. He told the Qin scholar: “This walking stick was used by Gu Gong Dan Fu, ancestor of King Wen of the Zhou Dynasty, when he led his people to leave Bin in order to elude the invasion of the Di people. In terms of age, it was several hundred years earlier than the straw mat which Confucius had sat on. Sir, what will you reward me?”



The Qin scholar was pleased as if he had found a treasure, and gave this man all the money in his house.



A few days later, another man with a broken bowl boasted to the Qin scholar: “Sir, neither the straw mat nor the walking stick is a genuine antique, whereas this bowl was actually made in the time of King of the Xia Dynasty, which is more remote than the Zhou Dynasty.”



The Qin scholar believed this broken bowl was more ancient than the straw mat and the walking stick, so he gave up his house and courtyard for the broken bowl.



The scholar possessed the straw mat, the walking stick and the broken bowl, but he had lost all his fortune. Though he had neither food nor clothes, his fondness for antiques remained unchanged. All along he could not bear to part with these three ‘antiques’.



Since then, the Qin scholar, draping the straw mat of Ai Gong of Lu over his shoulders, using the walking stick of Gu Gong Dan Fu, and holding the broken bowl of the time of Xia, begged along the street, and kept on shouting: “Elders and fellow villagers, whoever has Jiang Tai Gong’s ancient coins of Jiu Fu (the nine government offices) please give me one.”




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