The Analects of Confucius

The Analects of Confucius Study Guide

The Analects of Confucius, Lun Yu, or simply, The Analects, were written about 500 BC and are traditionally attributed to Confucius. However, much of the actual text was written by his students over a time period spanning the thirty to fifty years following his death. The exact publication date of the work is not known. The version that is most well-known today is a combination of the Lu and Qi versions of the work. These were compiled by Zhang Yu, a teacher of Emperor Cheng, towards the end of the Western Han Dynasty. This version came to be known as the Marquis Zhang Analects.

The Analects have greatly influenced the moral and philosophical values of China and other countries in Eastern Asia. The text has remained a fundamental course of study for any would-be Chinese scholar for over two thousand years. During the Sui Dynasty, an imperial examination was initiated to test a candidate's ability to apply Confucian philosophy and logic.