Ancient Herbalists Legend:The Sui Dynasty(581~618 AD)The Tang Dynasty(618～907 AD);Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms (907～960/979 AD)Back.
The Sui Dynasty(581~618 AD)The Tang Dynasty(618～907 AD);Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms (907～960/979 AD)
Famous herbalist of this period:Zhen Quan(major works:Zhen Fang,Ming Tang Ren Xing Tu),Chao Yuanfang(major works:Zhu Bing Yuan Hou Zong Lun),Yang Shang-shan(major works:Huangdi Nei Jing Tai Su),Sun Simiao(major works:Qian Jin Yao Fang,Qian Jin Yi Fang),Su Jing(major works:Xin Xiu Ben Cao),Meng Shen(major works:Shi Liao Ben Cao),Jian Zhen,Wang Tao(major works:Wai Tai Mi Yao),Chen Zangqi(major works:Ben Cao Shi Yi),Wang Bing,Zan Yin(major works:Jing Xiao Chan Bao).
甄权,Zhen Quan(c540-643):physician in the Tang Dynasty,who was a leading expert at acupuncture and the author of the Zhen Fang, Needling Prescriptions, and the Ming Tang Ren Xing Tu,or Figures of the Human Body.
甄立言,Zhen LiYan(545~627~649),brother of Zhen Quan.Famous herbalist same as his brother Zhen Quan,good at treatment and herbal classics,especially good for parasite treatment,author of Ben Cao Yin Yi(Pronouncing Meanings of Herbs,7 volumes),Ben Cao Yao Xing(Pharmacological Property of Herbs,3 volumes),Ben Cao Ji Lu(Collecting Lists of Herbs,2 volumes),Gu Jin Lu Yan Fang(Proved Recipes from Ancient till Present,50 volumes),all lost,part of its literatures could be found in other books such like Qian Jin Yao Fang,Wai Tai Mi Yao. His description of symptoms "thirsty and urine taste sweet" is the earliest record about diabets in ancient China.
巢元方,Chao Yuanfang(550-630): imperial physician of Emperor Yangdi of the Sui Dynasty,who took charge of the compilation of the Zhu Bing Yuan Hou Zong Lun,or Treatise on Causes and Symptoms of Diseases, the first Chinese work in this category and still a valuable reference book.
杨上善,Yang Shang-shan(585-670):physician at the turn of the Sui and Tang dynasties,imperial physician from 605-616 and one of the earliest physicians who made notes and commentaries on the Internal Classic or Canon of Medicine and was the author of Huangdi Nei Jing Tai Su,or Fundamentals of Huangdi's Internal Classic,an important reference book for studying the Internal Classic.
孙思邈,Sun Simiao(518 or 541-682): prominent physician of the Tang Dynasty,also a famous Taoist Priest at Tang period,the author of the Qian Jin Yao Fang,or Invaluable Prescriptions(652),total 30 vlumes,combined 5300 recipes and formulas,and the Qian Jin Yi Fang,or Supplement to the Invaluable Prescriptions(682),which have been considered compilations of the medical achievements before the 7th century.
Sun Simiao was also a famous Taoist and scholar of Taoism,he was a real scholar and good at anti-aging,he started research of herbs at very young age,as he proposed:"吾幼遭风冷,屡造医门,汤药之资,罄尽家产。"“至于弱冠,頗觉有悟,是以亲邻中外有疾厄者,多所济益。”(1)(in Pin Yin "Wu You Zao Feng Leng,Lv Zao Yi Men,Tang Yao Zhi Zi,Qing Jin Jia Chan." "Zhi Yu Ruo Guan,Po Jue You Wu,Shi Yi Qin Lin Zhong Wai You Ji E Zhe,Duo Suo Ji Yi.")(which means "i suffered cold chilling since child,consult with doctor many times,to pay for the fees of medicine nearly exhausting our family property.""started to know well about medicine since 20 years old,thus could be kind to neighbours who suffering from disease,helped them."),when the Sui Dynasty ended,Sun Simiao became a hermit and move to ZhongNan Mountain,be friend with famous monk Dao Xuan(596~667).according to ancient literature,even at age 40s,he still looks like a young man,the literature noted that "唐武德(618-626)中,以修炼,行医闻名于世,奉唐太宗召,入京师。唐太宗见其年虽高而容色甚少,惊叹其有道,欲授之以爵位,固辞不受。(2)(Tang Wude Zhong,Yi Xiu Lian,Xing Yi Wen Ming Yu Shi,Feng Tang Tai Zong Zhao,Ru Jing Shi.Tang Tai Zong Jian Qi Nian Sui Gao Er Rong Se Shen Shao,Jing Tan Qi You Dao,Yu Shou Zhi Yi Jue Wei,Gu Ci Bu Shou.)"(which means:During years of Tang Dynasty,Wu De reign title[618-626],Sun Simiao became a famous alchemist and herbalist,come to nation capital by imperial edict from Tang TaiZong[Li Shimin,the 2nd emperor of Tang Dynasty].Tang Taizong caught sight of herbalist Sun Simiao and saw he looks very young although aged,suprising and saying he must has ways,so showed respect and give some rank of nobility,but herbalist Sun refused it.),at year 674,Sun returned back to Mountain with cause of sickness.Herbalist Sun was a real scholar and all his life living by help patients in mountain,Dr.Sun belives nature-cultivation may brings longivity,and the most important method of health preserving is nature-cultivation,and it is even more important than supplements.Except the famous books,Sun ever written some other books,such like She Yang Zhen Zhong Fang,Fu Lu Lun,Bao Sheng Ming,Cun Shen Lian Qi Ming,He San Jiao Lun,etc.
Herbalist Sun Simiao hold very precious treatment morality in ancient time,emphasis the importance of life,he proposed "人命至重,有贵千金,一方济之,德愈于此。(3)(in Pin Yin,"Ren Ming Zhi Zhong,You Gui Qian Jin,Yi Fang Ji Zhi,De Yu Yu Ci")",which means "man's life is the most important,and higher value than 5kgs gold,1 recipe for help,morality over than saving.",he thinks as a herbalist,firstly,should "博及医源,精勤不倦,不得道听途说,而言医道已了(4)(Bo Ji Yi Yuan,Jing Qin Bu Juan,Bu De Dao Ting Tu Shuo,Er Yan Yi Dao Yi Liao)",which means a herbalist should "know widely about the origin of classics,learn hard and with no lassitude,should not listen to hearsay,then announced that herbal theory already finished.",and second,herbalist should "志存救济",“若有疾厄来求救者,不得问其贵贱贫富,长幼妍媸,怨亲善友,华夷愚智,普同一等,皆如至亲之想;亦不得瞻前顾后,自虑吉凶,护惜生命”(5)(in Pin Yin "Zhi Cun Jiu Ji,""Ruo You Ji E Lai Qiu Zhe,Bu De Wen Qi Gui Jian Pin Fu,Zhang You Yan Chi,Yuan Qin Shan You,Hua Yi Yu Zhi,Pu Tong Yi Deng,Jie Ru Zhi Qin Zhi Xiang;Yi Bu De Zhan Qian Gu Hou,Zi Lv Ji Xiong,Hu Xi Sheng Ming."),which means,a herbalist should "set saving as purpose,","when a patient with problems ask for help and saving,should not ask and discriminate by their social position,they rich or poor,old or young,appearance beautiful or looks ugly,a chinese or a barbarian,a wise man or an idiot,all should be treated the same,as one's closest relatives,and should not overcautious and indecisive,considering good or ill luck for self,should take life precious and care about it."
Herbalist Sun Simiao pay attention to health preservation,and emphasis that health preservation prompt longevity,he believes in Taoism theory "我命在我不在天"(Wo Ming Zai Wo Bu Zai Tian,which means my life hold in my own hand,instead of God.),he proposed that "神仙之道难致,养性之术易崇。故善摄生者常须慎于忌讳,勤于服食,则百年之内不惧于天伤也。(6)Shen Xian Zhi Dao Nan Zhi,Yang Xing Zhi Shu Yi Chong.Gu Shan She Sheng Zhe Chang Xu Shen Yu Ji Hui,Qin Yu Fu Shi,Ze Bai Nian Zhi Nei Bu Ju Yu Tian Shang Ye.",which means "Its hard to be an immortal,but it is easier to respect method of nature-cultivation.Thus those who good at health preservation should care of tatoo,care of supplement,thus no afraid of hurt from God within hundred years of life,before death comes.",Dr.Sun thinks the most important for health preservation is nature-cultivation,this is more important than supplement,and he proposed that "德行不充,纵服玉液金丹,未能延寿。(7)",which means "if a person's morality degraded,life span could never be extended even taken very precious pills and liquid."
苏敬,Su Jing(599-674):court official of the Tang Dynasty,also known as Su Gong.He was ordered by the emperor to review traditional herbals with a staff of 22 scholars and physicians.As a result of their work,in 659,the Xin Xiu Ben Cao,or Newly Compiled Materia Medica (of Tang) or Tang Ben Cao,or The Tang Materia Medica was published as the first official pharmacopoeia in China.
孟诜,Meng Shen(621-713) :herbalist of the Tang Dynasty,author of the Shi Liao Ben Cao,or A Diatetic Materia Medica.The original has been lost,but the text can be found in the Lei Zheng Ben Cao,or Classified Materia Medica.
王焘,Wang Tao(c670-755):distinguished physician of the Tang Dynasty.Trying to cure his sick mother,he made up his mind to go in for medicine.Having worked in the imperial library for twenty years and read a lot of medical books,he compiled a book of his own,titled Wai Tai Mi Yao,or Medical Secrets of an Official(752),an exhausted study of every branch of medicine,up to that time.
陈藏器,famous herbalist of the 8th century,who compiled the Ben Cao Shi Yi,or A Supplement to the Herbal.
李含光,Li Hanguang(682-735),famous Taoist of the 8th century,the 13th generation master of MaoShan Taoism who compiled herbal classic Ben Cao Yu Yi,and other Taoism classics,including Zhou Yi Yi Lue,Lao Zhuang Xue Ji,Lun San Xuan Yi Tong,Xian Xue Zhuan,Zhen Jing,nearly all lost,only some copies survived,such like Biao Zou Shi San Tong,Tai Shang Ci Bei Dao Chang Xiao Jiu You Chan Xu.
王冰,Wang Bing(c710-805): physician specializing in the art of healing and health preservation, who spent twelve years rearranging and revising the Su Wen,or Plain Questions,one of the two component parts of Huangdi's Internal Classic,into 24 volumes, with notes,commentaries and supplements.
昝殷,Zan Yin(c797-860): specialist in women's diseases and the author of the Jing Xiao Chan Bao,or Tested Treasures of Obstetrics,written 852-856,and one of the earliest extant book on obstetrics.
1, see Dao Zang,vol 26,page 2.
2, see Dao Jiao Shi,page 107.
3,4,5, see Dao Zang,vol 26,page 2,6,26.
6, see Chuan Shi Cang Shu,vol 3,page 3877,Published by Hai Nan Guo Ji Xin Wen Chu Ban Zhong Xin,1996.
7, see Dao Zang,vol 26,page 530.
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