Monday, August 22, 2011

More on Oze Hoan

This passage comes from The Chronicle of Lord Oda Nobunaga. It describes the major differences why the two biographies are so far apart. I have both copies in my private library and the Nobunaga scholar should have them as well.

Elisonas/Lamers (pp. 34-35).

"...substantially different account of Nobunaga's career that bears the title Shinchoki. That other book is from the pen of the physician Oze Hoan (1564-1640), a Confucianist who cast his design of Nobunaga in the mould of a Confucian exemplar. Hoan based himself on Gyuichi's work. Hoan's prefatory statement acknowledges that fact and expresses his desire to improve on his predecessor. Indeed, his book is full of embellishments. because it subordinates historical fact to interpretation, falsifies events and documents, and is essentially a work of fiction, scholars today unanimously regard his Shinchoki to be of far less value than Gyuichi's Shincho-Ko ki. In the Tokugawa period, however, Hoan's was widely read work. Printed on that novel apparatus, the movable type press, it was first published no later than June 1612. In other words, Gyuichi must have experienced the dubious pleasure of seeing himself plagiarized in his lifetime. Whereas Hoan's Shinchoki was reprinted repeatedly during the Tokugawa period, Gyuichi's chronicle, available only in manuscript form until the Meiji era, did not reach nearly as large a readership."

It would be interesting if Gyuichi's work was published on a wide scale during the time when Hoan's work as out. It probably would have stirred up a major debate.

Nobunaga no tame!

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