晏子諌君

I will do another story today, one that is, in my opinion, fairly humorous and may give us an insight into the personalities of Confucian-period Chinese people. I’ve decided to do something different this time with readings, and that is to put them not in the 書き下し文 but in the explanations after, to improve readability.

晏子諌君

景公有馬、其圉人殺之、公怒援戈、将自撃之、晏子曰、此不知其罪而死、臣請為君数之、令知其罪而殺之、公曰、諾、晏子挙戈而臨之曰、汝為吾君養馬而殺之、而罪当死、汝使吾君以馬之故殺圉人、而罪又当死、汝使吾君以馬故殺人、聞於四隣諸侯、汝罪又当死、公曰、夫子釈之、夫子釈之、勿傷我仁也、

晏子 君を諌む

景公馬有り。その圉人これを殺す。公怒り戈を援りて、まさに自らこれを撃たんとす。晏子曰く、「これその罪知らずして死す。臣請ふ君の為にこれを数め、その罪を知らしめてこれを殺さん」と。公曰く、「諾」と。晏子戈を挙げてこれに臨んで曰く、「汝我が君の為に馬を養ひてこれを殺す、而の罪死に当たる。汝我が君をして馬を以ての故に圉人を殺さしむ、而の罪また死に当たる。汝我が君をして馬を以ての故に人を殺し、四隣の諸侯に聞えしむ、汝の罪また死に当たる」と。公曰く、「夫子これを釈せ、夫子これを釈せ。我が仁を傷つくること勿れ」と。

There were many grammatical points in here, along with a confusing new usage of 而. Let’s take a look.

晏子 あんし: 名 is 嬰(えい), alive during the 春秋時代 of China (when Confucius was alive) from 斉.
其圉人 そのぎょじん: A 圉人 was a bureaucrat who took care of lords’ horses, so 其 refers to 景公 and not the horse.
怒り いかり
援戈 ほこをとりて
将自撃之 まさにみずからこれをうたんとす: Our first encounter with a 再読文字, that is, a character that is read twice. It is read ignoring 返り点 the first time (将二自撃一レ之), then come back to at the end. This particular character is read まさに~未然形+んとす and means 今にも~をしようとする.  As a side note, 未然形+ん is the classical Japanese 助動詞 「む」 which has several meanings, but here it is 推量(だろう).
此 これ: This refers to the 圉人.
不知其罪而死: He will die without knowing his crimes.
臣 しん: First-person pronoun =私
請: This character tells us the following is 願望形, and that there are two possible endings to the sentence: 未然形+む (意思・意向) (令:請以剣舞<請う剣を以て舞はん>)or 命令形 (令:願大王急渡<願わくは大王急ぎ渡れ>願わくは=請う). The difference between the two is the first means どうか私に~させて下さい and the second means どうか~して下さい.
数 せめ: 責める, Here this means to enumerate one’s crimes
令知其罪而 そのつみをしらせめて: 令=使, an indicator of 使役形. I will explain this more further down.
臣請為君数之、令知其罪而殺: Please let me tell him his crimes and then let me kill him.
諾 だく: OK
臨: Here, this means to walk in front of the 圉人 and face him. The character itself means a person of high status facing a person of lower status, or a person from a geographically high position facing a person in a lower position.
汝、而 なんぢ: Second-person pronoun =Thou, used only in reference to close friends of similar status and those of a lower status. The reason 而, a character that has no relation to the meaning of 汝 is because the 音 are similar. 汝(じょ)、而(じ). Other characters read なんじ include 若(じゃく)、爾(じ)、女(じょ). In addition, 乃 is also used, but this character is read だい or ない, and so is somewhat of an outcast. (Perhaps, since it is similar in form to 汝, 乃 could have been a mis-scribe that led to common usage.) It is more common as すなわち (I imagine). As with everything in 漢文, 漢字力 and reasoning abilities are very important in deciding, from context, what exactly the characters meaning is.
使吾君以馬之故殺圉人: 使, as explained above, is 使役形, and the noun directly following is followed by をして. “You have made my lord kill you because of a horse.”
四隣諸侯 しりんのしょこう: The various rulers of the bordering countries.
汝使吾君以馬故殺人、聞於四隣諸侯: You have made my lord let the bordering countries know about his killing of a human over a horse.
夫子 ふうし: A 夫子 is a teacher.
釈之 これをゆるせ: 釈 means 赦す、解く、放つ.
仁 じん: I’m not really sure how to translate 仁, except that is a key tenet of Confucianism, ie. benevolence. 仁者 is a common word, meaning a man of virtue. Here is an explanation from the 日本国語大辞典:「孔子は、天から人間に与えられた人間の本性の働きで単なる情念ではなく、勇と知とを兼ね備え、克己復礼、孝悌、敬、忠恕、愛などに表現され、また制度としての令の中にも具体化されるとした」
勿傷我仁: 禁止形.  “Do not harm my 仁!” Kind of a lame translation. すること勿れ=するな
也: Our first 置き字, that is, a character that is not read and merely imparts nuance to the sentence. Here, 断定. This is often found at the end of 禁止形.

景公有馬、其圉人殺之、公怒援戈、将自撃之、晏子曰、此不知其罪而死、臣請為君数之、令知其罪而殺之、公曰、諾、晏子挙戈而臨之曰、汝為吾君養馬而 殺之、而罪当死、汝使吾君以馬之故殺圉人、而罪又当死、汝使吾君以馬故殺人、聞於四隣諸侯、汝罪又当死、公曰、夫子釈之、夫子釈之、勿傷我仁也、

Well, what do you think? 晏子 lecturing the 圉人 as to why he’s going to die is, in fact, lecturing 景公 as to why he is wrong for having this man killed. Of course it is silly to kill someone over a horse, and 晏子, showing some wisdom, perhaps, in how to deal with rulers back then, temporarily placed the blame on the 圉人 to show why 景公 was wrong. Kind of amusing, huh?

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