In the First Display Room at the Stone Forest is exhibited the
"Kaicheng Classics", including the texts of 12 books, namely "the
Book of Changes"; "the Book of History"; "the Book of Songs";
"Account of the Rite of the Zhou Dynasty"; "the Book of Ceremo-
ny"; "the Book of Rites"; "Zuo Qiuming's Commentary on Spring
and Autumn Annals"; "Gongyang's Commentary on Spring and
Autumn Annals"; "Guliang's Commentary on Spring and Autumn
Annals"; "the Analects of Confucius"; "the Canon of Filial Piety"
and "the Erya". The 12 classics containing altogether 650,252
characters were thus engraved on both sides of 114 pieces of stones.
In the Qing Dynasty another classic "Mencius" was engraved on 17
pieces of stones with 30,000 eharacters~, It is also displayed here.
This and 12 others are together called Thirteen Classics". These
12 classics were required readings for intellectuals of feudal society.
Because printing was quite backward, in order to'avoid errors made
in copying the classics by men of letters, and to keep them forever,
these 12 classics were thus engraved on stones as standard copies.
These tablets were erected in the imperial college in Chang'an for
the proof of private copies. Since the Eastern Han Dynasty the clas-
sics had been ,,successfully engraved seven times. The "Kaicheng
Stone Classics is the only complete set of such classics passed down
in good condition.
Forest of Stone Tablets in Xi'an
The Second Display Room
The Third Display Room
The Fourth & Fifth Display Room
The Sixth Display Room