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HUANG DI 3




Most of the dialogues, Tessenow concludes from his analysis of historical
layers in the Su wen, were the work of compilers who construed them as
a device to link originally separate texts. The questions and answers put in
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the mouths of Huang Di and his partners allowed them to provide introductions
and transitions from one theme to another. Only in a few instances,
as for example in the first part of Su wen 19, should the dialogue be considered
a structural characteristic of the primary text.
The textus receptus of the Su wen resulted from different primary compilations,
most of them completed during the Han era. This explains the
mixture of texts structured as dialogues and nondialogue discourses. Later,
secondary compilators, such as Quan Yuanqi, Yang Shangshan, and Wang
Bing, brought these dialogues and nondialogue discourses together or rearranged
them without attempting to superimpose one coherent structure
on them.



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