128 documents
Unless otherwise specified, the descriptions of sources in this section are extracted from Pierre-Etienne Will and collaborators, Handbooks and Anthologies for Officials in Imperial China: A Descriptive and Critical Bibliography, 2 vols., Leiden: Brill, 2020
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TitleAn Wu qinshen xigao 按吳親審檄稿 [Draft Opinions from Cases Personally Tried as Regional Inspector of the Wu Region]
Topic2.2 Judicial cases: Local casebooks
Historical periodEarly Qing (1644-1796)
Reprint (year of)2005
AuthorQi Biaojia 祁彪佳
CollectionLidai panli pandu 歷代判例判牘, vol. 4.
Number of volume4
Place of publication北京
Publication typeManuscript

The work consists of 148 revised judgments delivered by Qi while he was was reviewing  judgments by local officials as Su-Song regional inspector. A majority of entries deal with criminal cases, but some contain data of interest on socio-economic conditions in Jiangnan, even though the concrete information contained in the original dossiers is mostly absent from the present collection.


One of 26 titles in Qi Biaojia’s Nachlass preserved at Beitu (see also Puyang yandu, kandu, etc.), which according to Hamashima’s description (see below) already have the form of a “collected works” ready for publication. The ms. is indeed carefully written in regular script on pre-framed, though non-paginated, folios. The text starts with an order to the prefects and magistrates under Qi specifying how the criminals listed further on (the list is not reproduced), as well as witnesses if any, should be delivered for his reviewing. Then come 148 judicial statements delivered by Qi as Suzhou-Songjiang regional inspector in 1633-34, based on his own interrogation of the persons involved. The comparatively short texts (introduced by 一件… 事, with a brief indication of the nature of the case) are addressed to the officials who originally dealt with the cases, e.g., the Suzhou prefectural judge (蘇刑官), or the chief of the Suzhou police (蘇總捕, a position held by a vice-prefect 同知), and several prefects and magistrates; Qi exposes his views and indicates how the affair must be handled, saying e.g. “no further investigation” (免究), or “a dossier must be opened” (相應立案), sometimes giving a deadline, e.g. “report within five days” (五日內招報). A majority of entries concern criminal cases, but some contain data of interest on socio-economic conditions in Jiangnan and on local administration, even though the concrete information contained in the original dossiers is mostly absent from the texts collected here. This appears to be a selection of the more serious or noteworthy cases reviewed by Qi.

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