Eulogy on the Chronicle of Ni K'uan
Ch'u Sui-liang (596-658), T'ang Dynasty
Handscroll, ink on paper, 24.6 x 170 cm
Ch'u Sui-liang, a native of Hangchow, was a learned scholar. He especially excelled at clerical script and was praised by Ou-yang Hsun, a famous calligrapher of the time.Wei Cheng recommended him to discuss calligraphy with Emperor T'ai-tsung, who scoured the land for works by Wang Hsi-chih. Ch'u Sui-liang was ordered to authenticate them and have them catalogued.
The characters in this handscroll appear thin and open. However, within each character, some of the strokes are narrow while others are thicker. The poise of the characters has a kind of light and airy touch that is both elegant and beautiful, making one feel as if looking into the pure and unsullied character for which Ch'u was renowned.
Ni K'uan (?-103 BC) was a native of Ch'ien-ch'eng. He excelled at handling legal cases. In the administration of Emperor Wu-ti, he rose to high office and was effective at designing flood control projects and helping to devise a calendrical system. The biography for Ni K'uan appears in "The Book of Han."