Yuefu are Chinese poems composed in a folk song style. The term literarily meant “Music Bureau,” a reference to the imperial Chinese governmental organization(s). It was originally charged with collecting or writing the lyrics, later the term Yuefu was applied to literary imitations or adaptations of the Music Bureau’s poems.
The Plum in the Golden Vase or The Golden Lotus is a Chinese novel of manners composed in vernacular Chinese during the late Ming Dynasty (1368– 1644). The explicit depiction of sexuality garnered the novel a notoriety akin to Fanny Hill and Lolita in English literature, but critics such as the translator David Tod Roy see a firm moral structure which exacts retribution for the sexual libertinism of the central characters.
A Dream of Red Mansions, also called Dream of the Red Chamber, or The Story of the Stone, composed by Cao Xueqin, is one of China’s Four Great Classical Novels. It was written sometime in the middle of the 18th century during the Qing Dynasty. Long considered a masterpiece of Chinese literature, the novel is generally acknowledged to be the pinnacle of Chinese fiction. Lin Daiyu and Xue Baochai are the two most important female characters in this novel.
Diao Chan and Xi Shi are two of the Four Great Beauties renowned for their beauty in ancient Chinese history. Diaochan ( 3rd century, Late Eastern Han/ Three Kingdoms period) is said to be so luminously lovely that the moon itself would shy away in embarrassment when compared to her face. Xi Shi (7th to 6th century BC, Spring and Autumn period) is said to be so entrancingly beautiful that fish would forget how to swim and sink below the surface when seeing her reflection in the water.
Pu Songling (1640–1715) was a Qing Dynasty Chinese writer, best known as the author of Strange Stories from a Chinese Studio (Liaozhai zhiyi).