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Folklore at Yushan Hill and Shanghu Lake— Yushan Hill Painted by Tang Bohu

2011-10-28    admin    Browsed:2301

Tang Yin (also named Tang Bohu), one of the “Four Gifted Scholars” in Jiangnan Area at Ming Dynasty, admired great scenery of Yushan Hill for a long time, so he made a special trip to Changshu to enjoy it. To truly experience the delicate beauty of the hill, he specifically hired a boat outside the Fucheng Gate, and moved slowly along the Shanghu Lake following the route described by Huang Gongwang in his poem. Tang Yin who is suave and handsome enjoyed the landscaped while observed the lush Yushan Hill for miles, and suddenly he was inspired to paint it, so he took out the ink and brush immediately and began to sketch the outline. But when he compared his finished painting with the Yushan Hill near at hand, he found it failed to illustrate the real Yushan Hill. As a man who pursued artistic perfection, he painted another one, but still not satisfied. He painted one by one, but still felt he couldn’t catch the essence of it. He painted the hill for the whole day except his lunch time at boat. In the evening, when the boat came back by the waterway along the foothill, dozens of abandoned paper balls covered the corner of boat cabin. When he was about to board, the owner of the boat asked, “Do you still want to take the paintings in the cabin?” “Those can be burned to ashes as fire-leading thing.” Then he went to his friend’s in the town to put up for the night, and planed to come back the next day for painting.
The owner of the boat knew a little about painting, and also knew who the hirer was through the chatting at lunch. So after Tang Yuan’s leaving, the owner hurried to take the paper balls and spread smoothly, only to find that each of 71 pieces is so amazing. The next day, he put them in the market, and they were quickly sold out, so he made a good fortune.
The reason why Tang Yin was not satisfied with his paintings is that he didn’t understand what Yushan’s delicate beauty is. Because of the shining sun, changing clouds, and vapor steamed from the vast lake surface, Yu Shan Hill would present 72 different extraordinary view, such as hiding, appearing, floating, blue, gloom or green, etc. Tang Yin only drew 71 that day, leaving one unfinished, and a lifetime of regret too. But since then, one new twister was added to Changshu dialect, “Tang Bohu’s paintings of Yushan Hill— similar and different.”