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Tao Te Ching

Tao Te Ching

Lao-Tzu
Translated, with Translators' Preface, Glossary, and Pronunciation Guide, by Stephen Addiss and Stanley Lombardo; Introduction by Burton Watson, with Ink Drawings by Stephen Addiss

1993 - 128 pp.

Format ISBN Price Qty
Paper 978-0-87220-232-0
$13.00
Examination 978-0-87220-232-0
$1.50

Quick Overview

This translation captures the terse and enigmatic beauty of the ancient original and resists the tendency toward interpretive paraphrase found in many other editions. Along with the complete translation, Lombardo and Addiss provide one or more key lines from the original Chinese for each of the eighty-one sections, together with a transliteration of the Chinese characters and a glossary commenting on the pronunciation and meaning of each Chinese character displayed. This greatly enhances the reader's appreciation of how the Chinese text works and feels and the different ways it can be translated into English.

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This translation captures the terse and enigmatic beauty of the ancient original and resists the tendency toward interpretive paraphrase found in many other editions. Along with the complete translation, Lombardo and Addiss provide one or more key lines from the original Chinese for each of the eighty-one sections, together with a transliteration of the Chinese characters and a glossary commenting on the pronunciation and meaning of each Chinese character displayed. This greatly enhances the reader's appreciation of how the Chinese text works and feels and the different ways it can be translated into English.

Reviews:

"This crystalline translation of the Tao Te Ching is accurate down to the nuance and as concisely poetic as the original. It preserves the quirks and flavors of the original text. The translators hearkened to the message of the book itself, and kept it clear and gently strong. Of the many translations I have read in English, this is unquestionably the best."
     —Gary Snyder, University of California at Davis

“I’ve been reading Tao te Ching in translation for many years. This is definitely the best available in American English. I agree with Snyder's remarks on the back that, of English translations, it is "unquestionably the best." I will recommend it to everyone I know. It is one of the few books everyone in the world should read and know.
     "The calligraphy is lovely—Addiss's lettering is rough, archaic, kind of unlovely in a way that would please Lao Tzu. Because it is harmonious if not pretty. The translations are terse, evocative, and don't mess around trying to add extra explanation. Watson’s introduction is a superb overview of ‘what was going on’ in China of the day, and also avoids explaining it all away. The history is important—or at least deeply useful.
     "I only wish this edition were better known. . . . Far better than the standard and flashy editions out there. . .”
     —Andrew Schelling, Department of Religious Studies, Naropa University

 

"This edition combines an earthy—as opposed to esoteric—translation with a welcome entrée into the Chinese text for those who do not know that language. The gorgeous ink paintings add beauty to the edition. I can't imagine a better way to present this text, and I can't imagine ever using a different edition."
     —Greg Salyer, Huntingdon College

"This is by far the best translation on the market today, and I have been praising it to whoever would listen."
     —Livia Kohn, Boston University