Something can happen during the composition of a text which changes its direction, as it were, from within. This may create a zone of difference with the earlier material (which envisioned a different continuation), even though the author is the same.
Analects 3. Much of the material of this chapter is clearly arranged so as to conform to what had become the standard Analects chapter module (see Analects 5 in the Figurate section). That material, like the behavior prescriptions of Analects 10, is wholly concerned with ritual; in this case with the theory and practice of sacrifice, and the chapter seems to have been first intended as something of a treatise on the subject, cast in the old form of a series of sayings by Confucius. Quite different in character are a few sayings at the beginning and in the body of the chapter, which much more heatedly register outrage at some abuse of ritual propriety, probably most closely symbolized by the opening pair of sayings (LY 3:1-2), in which Confucius expresses disapproval of a usurpation by the "Ji family" of ceremonies properly belonging only to the Jou King. The outside event to which these passages probably refer was the 0343 usurpation by the neighboring and powerful state of Chi of the title "King" for its ruler, a title previously reserved (at least among the Sinitic states of the time) for the Jou overlord, who was powerless at this time, but still held a certain ceremonial position. The adoption of this title effectively opens the period of open and declared warfare for the vacant overlord position, a period which ended in the unification of all the states by Chin in 0221.
The year 0342 does not so much date Analects 3 as drive a chronologically precise wedge through it, defining material composed in placidity before that event, and in anger after it.
Analects 16. The bulk of this chapter consists of a series of "numbered set" sayings, concerning the Three Kinds of Helpful Friendship and so on, presumably on their way to becoming a chapter of the usual size, and of that character. Plastered onto the front of this is a set of three sayings, one (16:1) inordinately long, and criticizing a pending military operation by the "Ji Family," the latter two calling down curses on certain kinds of state wrongdoing. Given the chronological context on both sides of this chapter, which narrow the interpretive possibilities, and bearing in mind the major events of that period, the likeliest possibility is that these are a reaction against the imminent action by Chi (north of Lu) against Sung (south of Lu), which resulted in the conquest and extinction of Sung in 0285. The two shorter passages following (16:2-3) give a formula for the decline of evil states which corresponds numerically to the number of Chi rulers from the usurpation of the Tyen family in Chi to the Sung incident. And in fact the curses were fulfilled: a coalition of other states, alarmed at the resulting doubling of the area of Chi, combined to oust Chi from its new territory (though it did not lead to the reinstating of Sung), and to drive the Chi ruler into exile and death, almost bringing Chi itself to an end.
In this case, the redirection did not lead to a filling up of the standard Analects module, and all we have of Analects 16 is a brief series of "numbered set" pronouncements, preceded by these three responses to a contemporary outrage. As in the case of Analects 3, the Chi conquest of Sung, a perfectly precise date in its own right, does not date either the original or the redirected portion of Analects 16, but rather interposes a closely known date between them.
Jwangdz 4. For the orderly growth of the early part of this chapter, see under Accretional. The last early segment, a denunciation of Confucius in 4:7, is quoted entire in Analects 18:5, but with a shift in the ending which makes Confucius the winner in the confrontation, and accompanied by other anecdotes in which hermits of the Jwangdz type are held up to contempt for their cowardice. The effect on the writers of Jwangdz 4 was dramatic. They proceeded to append, at the beginning of their text, a series of three anecdotes of increasing length, with Confucius increasingly prominent, which accept the duty of public service and concern themselves with how its dangers may be overcome, rather than (as before) avoided altogether.
We do not directly know the date of this Confucian/Dauist confrontation (our working hypothesis is c0262), but whatever it was, it links the Analects and the Jwangdz together at that point in their respective evolution, and marks a decisive transition for the Jwangdz end of the link.
Analects 20. Again we have a presumptive outside interruption, but in this extreme case there is no continuation at all. Two "Confucian" sayings only exist (plus a third which had been added to the house text, but not yet passed out for memorization, and so is missing in the Analects copy recovered from memory in early Han). The implication is that the composition of this further chapter was interrupted by some event, most probably (given the larger chronological context) the final conquest of Lu by Chu, which would have brought the Confucian School of Lu itself to an end (a refugee group seems to have continued in Chi, but its longer text has not so far been recovered). This was in 0249. The then head of the school, a distant descendant of Confucius, is said to have gone to another state, where he eventually became a minister.
Thucydides' History also ends abruptly, in the middle of a narrative of winter 0411, presumably because the author died at that point. Xenophon and Theopompus attempted, with varying success, to continue Thucydides' work to the point he perhaps had meant to reach; see below.
Shr Ji. The intended chronological scope of this work was several times extended. Apparently the end date first envisioned was 0122, when a fortunate omen occurred and was stabilized by the adoption of a new reign period (Ywaen Shou, "The Year of the Unicorn"). This was upset by the occurrence of an insistently includable event, the appointment by Emperor Wu of three hereditary Kings, in 0117. Room was accordingly made for that chapter by adjusting the original groundplan. Beyond this, the author, Szma Tan, continued to add to his work until his death in early 0109, and recorded some events of that year. His son, Szma Chyen, who succeeded him as Grand Astrologer in 0107, took the adoption of the new calendar in 0104 (a work in which he had had a hand) as his new endpoint, but this too was subsequently exceeded, and he continued to add material until his death in early 090. Chyen also broadened the original ideological and geographical scope of the work by adding an additional ten chapters to the design, including one on Confucian scholarly traditions and six on foreign peoples. By a series of legitimate successions and organic improvements, the work thus reached a formal equilibrium quite different from that originally envisioned. For the Shr Ji as a whole, see also Figurate and Layered.
Iliad. This long series of separately performable modules (see in Repertoire) was probably at first meant to narrate the battle for Troy (Ilium), and to end with its overthrow: an epic of war. Our present Iliad is full of grisly battle scenes, with appalling deaths described in excruciating detail. But it ends with a deeply moving reconciliation between the Greeks (represented by Achilles, who had slain the Trojan champion Hector) and the Trojans (represented by Hector's father Priam). The series of epic modules has obviously been reworked at some point, so as to begin with that intention (its announced subject is now the wrath of Achilles), and to end as here described (with the resolution of that wrath). The conclusion of the Trojan war, originally part of the Iliad, was separated as another epic series. The redirection is from a war narrative to a reconciliation narrative. In the long evolution of this work, this is the moment with which the name Homer is probably best associated.
Thucydides' History opens with an intention to describe a war, but does not say which war. The work seems originally to have intended to describe a ten years' war; it ended with a statement in 5:24 that "the continuous war has now been described;" this segment is the present 2:1-5:24. The rest of Book 5 notes the precarious nature of the following peace, and in effect justifies treating the following conflicts as parts of one continuous war. This resumption of the subject amounts to a change of original intention. See also under Conflated.
Un Ballo in Maschera. Verdi's "Masked Ball," a tale of regicide, was unacceptable to the Bourbon ruler of Naples (where it was to premiere), and Verdi got it past the censor only by changing the locale to Puritan America, and transforming the murdered Swedish King of the original libretto into the more distant Governor of Boston. It would be an error to attribute this late change of plan to a sudden interest of Verdi in things Transatlantic.
The opera was finally performed in 1859; Vittorio Emmanuele was not to be crowned King of a united Italy until 1861, but the armies were already on the march in 1859. The crowds chanting "Viva Verdi" at the end of the performance were no doubt in earnest about the music, but they are also thought to have been acrostically acclaiming "Vittorio Emmanuele, Rè D'Italia." Not only must texts be read carefully in situations of political oppression, so must audience responses to texts.
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