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Numeral Diagrams in Divination Chu Bamboo Slips and the Mantic Art on the Tsinghua Bamboo Slips
Author(s): 
Pages: 58-63
Year: Issue:  3
Journal: Journal of Shenzhen University(Humanities & Social Sciences)

Keyword:  divination Chu bamboo slipsmantic art on Tsinghua bamboo slipsnumeral diagramsdivination recorddivinatory principles;
Abstract: The mantic art on the Tsinghua bamboo slips and the divination on Chu bamboo slips excavated at Tianxingguan, Boashan,and Geling Village belong to the same system: numeral diagrams. However, it differs from the above three divination Chu bamboo slips in following aspects: the numeral diagrams of the latter are the records of actual divinations, the numeral diagrams of the former are divinatory principles and methods recorded on the slips. There are 114 numeral diagrams on the Tsinghua bamboo slips concerning divination, composed of six digits: “一(one)”, “四(four)”, “五(five)”, “ 六(six)”, “八(eight)” , and “九(nine)”.Theoretically, six digits constitute a 6-digit numeral diagram, and altogether produce 46656 results. But the mantic art on the Tsinghua bamboo slips recorded only 114 of them, which might have been screened and summarized. The numeral diagrams on the Tsinghua bamboo slips appeared in pairs, but they were not in a bengua-zhigua relationship. It took the divinatory method by four numbers (which form a trigram), with the factors like“year(年)”,“month(月)”, and“date(日)”in divination and“man and woman (男女)”,“left and right (左右)”,“zhaomu (昭穆)”“shuru(数入)”taken into account. It is a divinatory method of unique principles.
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