The Little First Grand Secretary in My House

2020-05-20 10:08:12
Chapter 19

Because of chieftain Zheng's remarks, the eyes of scholar He and scholar Qiao were on Xue Tingxiang.


They naturally don't understand this clue, but when chieftain Zheng suddenly mentioned it, they think that is there something hidden in it. After all, they all knew before coming that this was a contest between two descendants of the same family.


It is not only about learning but also the future.


They all come from poor families, and of course they knew how difficult it was to study in the farmhouse. So before, Xue Tingxiang said that while the Xue family had settled down, they had not forgotten to cultivate and educate their children and grandchildren. Therefore, scholar Qiao would appreciate it.


Because he knew that this matter seemed trivial, but it was too difficult for the farmers, and there were a few people who could change their fate by studying.


It can be said that those from poor families in the countryside who can gain the fame and credit have all experienced great tribulations. Their starting point is much lower than that of others. It takes countless efforts to catch up with others. At the same time, they have to face the cruelty of various competitions.


This kind of competition is not only between the classmates or examiners, but also between the people in the same clan, even their own brothers.


If you succeed in your studies, you will have enough space to show your talent and enjoy life. But if you fail, you will not continue learning knowledge what you want and do manual labour throughout your whole life.


Because they understand this cruelty, they can't help but think about whether Xue Tingxiang intentionally said that he was weak in learning, or he wanted to reduce the difficulty of questions. But it's a double-edged sword. After all, he is inferior to others in learning, which is a disadvantage to himself.


These thoughts only happened in an instant. Because of the sudden attention of scholar He and scholar Qia, Xue Qingshan was nervous again for fear that Xue Tingxiang would say something surprising. At this time, he had no time to think about why Xue Tingxiang knew how to interpret the Scriptures, and he forgot that his previous idea was Xue Tingxiang's unclear interpretation of scripture, and it would be effortless for his son to beat him.


It's the same with patriarch Xue. What happens in the clan that can’t be seen, it is only limited to the clan. If it comes out in public, it will be embarrassing.


The eyes of the two men seemed to take a needle, and they were anxious on Xue Tingxiang's face. However, he smiled shyly and said, "When I was young, I was very weak and sick, so I inevitably missed school and fell behind."


Xue Qingshan said with a smile, "That's right. I'm not afraid that two seniors will laugh at me. My nephew is gifted and intelligent, but his physical weakness drags down his studies."


Patriarch Xue nodded in agreement.


Everyone else didn't know what was going on, but they just opened their eyes. Only chieftain Zheng seemed to realize what's wrong with it, but he couldn't be specific and only keep silent.


After scholar He and scholar Qiao humiliated each other again, finally they are dominated by scholar He. Sitting at the center, he said to Xue Tingxiang, "Since you don't know the meaning of Scripture, which is beyond the scope of what you have learned, it is a bit unfair. The two of you are still young. It's the time to lay a good foundation. Let's test your two foundations of learning." 


After hearing that, Xue Juncai was disappointed and felt that was using a sledgehammer to crack a nut. He missed the opportunity to show himself, but he was also disdainful.


“In any case, then Xue Tingxiang is not my opponent,” he thought.


Scholar He squeezed his beard and pondered a little, then said: "Zhu Zi said: studies are inherently different, but they are just from the same principle--Tao. It is based on the fact that if you are young and don't study in primary school, you can't accept your heart and cultivate your virtue. You two will write from memory an article of "Disciple Rules."


Neither of them thought that the first question turned out to be the "Disciple Rules". It is learned at the beginning of enlightenment, and the whole article was only a thousand words. In addition to the summary, it is divided into seven chapters: being filial piety, loving and respecting elder brother, being cautious, trusting, loving the public, being benevolent, and spare no effort to learn.


Each chapter is not long, three words a sentence, rhyme with the rut, catchy. It lists all kinds of norms that disciples children should abide by when they are at home, when they are away from home and when they are dealing with people and things. It is a classic for children to be upright, to be honest, to do their best, to be honest, to cultivate a loyal family style and to control themselves. It also proves what scholar He said before that studies are inherently different, but they are just from the same principle--Tao.


Someone has already prepared a square table and ink. Each of them had a table table in front of the hall, and even the ink has been polished.


When they came to the table, they wrote without hesitation.


With the two people writing crazily, the noise gradually faded. Even if the country people didn't know any truth, they also know that knowledgeable people can't be disturbed when they are learning.


This is not a problem for Xue Tingxiang, because he only has one book, so he has spent a lot of effort on reciting all the things he has learned.


It's not just memorizing, but also remembering that only when he is asked questions in the school can he answer well, because he has no reference at all.


Without books, it is better to have them, because they are all engraved in his mind. Especially since he had that dream, in order to be afraid of the memory being affected, he had silently recited the books in his mind for countless times.


While Xue Tingxiang was writing fast, he also made a slight change to scholar He.


He could tell that the his unexpected question was not the intentional discharge, but a surprise. Because the "Disciple Rules" is too simple for students. Almost everyone learned it at the beginning of enlightenment, but they just throw it away after learning it.


Except at the beginning of his enlightenment, teachers would not test these things later. Maybe it's “Three Character Canon", or even "The Book of Family Names" and "Thousand-Character Classic". And it will not be the "Disciple Rules".


Xue Tingxiang could't even wait to see Xue Juncai's reaction. Maybe he can write down the article roughly. Is it possible to write down more than a thousand words in a good order? And scholar He ordered them not only to write, but also the “calligraph” in the book.


Just by his own handwriting, he can win Xue Juncai.


As Xue Tingxiang thought, at first Xue Juncai really despised him. He even thought that scholar He was fool that he chose to took the test of "Disciple Rules".


Everyone knows well "Disciple Rules”. At the beginning of the school entrance is to learn. But when he started, he found that he didn't seem to be as good as he thought.


He didn't remember well enough to forget the next sentence. The "Disciple Rules" is not like other articles that can connect the last sentence with the next and prove each other. If you make a mistake in the front, you will make a mistake in the back. 


Xue Juncai was more and more upset. He always thought he was wrong. If someone asks a question, he will naturally be able to answer it. But for writing from memory, he can also do it well!


At first, he wrote fast, but then it became slower and slower. Even when he couldn't write unceasingly, he was obviously not sure whether his memory was right.


On the contrary, Xue Tingxiang had a steady condition from the beginning.  At this time, he was still writing well, but it could be seen that his strokes were very coherent, almost without pause. 


In the first place, scholar Qiao looked at scholar He with exclamation, but he didn't hide his surprise at all. For the following situations, he naturally closed his eyes and had to admire the ingenious mind of He.


Scholar He smiled slightly. In fact, he would test such a problem, just because he wanted to let them make mistakes. This is a very delicate mentality. He never expected that he would be convinced by scholar Qiao, which made him a little proud. At the same time, he is also very proud of his inspiration.


He stroked his beard and smiled lightly, "You two don't need to worry, cause you have time of a stick to write down."


It seems that they will write more than a thousand words in a rush, but they can also write down the simple things like "Disciple Rules". As long as they grasp time, they could finish it. 


But that was before. When someone mentioned time, Xue Juncai couldn't help being more anxious. 


In the following time, he kept looking at the sticker, because it was seen too often, which made his speed even slower.


"Well, time is over."


With the voice falling, Xue Tingxiang put down his pen and finished his mission.


Xue Juncai didn't move until someone went to him and found that he was as stiff as a stone and sweating. And the paper in front of him was only half full.


Because they were back to the gate, while Xue Qingshan and Yang Zhong were sitting at the end of the gate, they didn't find anything wrong. In their mind, "Disciple Rules" is simple. However, Xue Juncai's strange appearance also attracted their attention, but they still didn't expect that Xue Juncai could not finish it.


Until scholar He and scholar Qiao saw their papers respectively and looked at each other. He declared that Xue Tingxiang won the contest.


Xue Qingshan stood up from the chair in surprise and asked, "How could it be?"


At the same time, there was a lot of discussion below and outside the door, and it seemed that they could not believe that Xue Jun had even lost. The expert sees the truth, but the layman sees the excitement. Those villagers who don't have the literacy didn’t know what to test. They only knew that the scholar said that Xue Juncai lost to Xue Gouzi.


Xue Juncai lost to Xue Gouzi?


It's really amazing that Xue Juncai has always been the most outstanding young generation in Yuqing Village. Everyone will raise him when mentioned.


"Senior He, Senior Qiao, is this a mistake, "Disciple Rules"... "


Scholar He gestured with his eyes, then two people came forward to unfold and hold the papers of Xue Juncai and Xue Tingxiang, and showed them to the public.


On one of the rice paper, the handwriting is full of strength and good looking. On the other piece of rice paper, the characters are not bad, however, it begins with tigerish energy but peters out towards the end. The more they get to the back, the more they scribble. There are even ink spots on the paper.


"Xue Tingxiang is not bad at a word, and there is no altered ink on the  surface, which is the best. And Xue Juncai didn't finish it, and there were mistakes and omissions, so Xue Tingxiang won this game"


"Juncai!" Xue Qingshan was surprised. His eyes were full of disbelief. What else did he want to say, but he was pulled by Yang Zhong.


Xue Juncai didn't look up until now, when he raised his head stiffly and looked at Xue Tingxiang with jealousy.

……


The next one is the second round, which is back to normal homework for examinations.


Asked by scholar He, they answered.


What is the meaning of "Seeking ancient theories is happy"?


"To explore the ancient events of the ancients and read more wise and famous sayings, you can get rid of distractions and enjoy yourself," Xue Juncai stepped forward and replied.


“What is the advice for life about Mencius and Zi Yu in the ‘Thousand-Character Classic’?” This question was for Xue Tingxiang.


He pondered a little and said, "Mencius advocates simplicity, while  historiographer Zi Yu is upright. It's about being as moderate as possible, being industrious and modest, being cautious and prudent, and being able to exhort and admonish yourself."


"What's the next sentence to Save your advice, and increase your resistance?" When asked this question, scholar He did not look at either of them.


Xue Juncai was still in a daze, Xue Tingxiang has replied, "If you know that something dangerous and disgraceful is about to happen, you can retire from the mountains and forests and survive."


"No shortcomings, or no strengths. What is the meaning?"


This time, Xue Juncai didn't fall behind. He hurriedly said, "don't talk about other people's shortcomings, and don't rely on your own strengths to be enterprising." The voice has not yet fallen, but his face is hot, not knowing whether it was shame or self-confidence.


"Good!" Scholar He clapped and said, "all the answers are good."


Suddenly, he said, "the Pavilion."


Xue Juncai was in a daze for a while. But Xue Tingxiang's eyes flashed and he replied, "Mountain Room."

After hearing, Xue Juncai realized, that scholar He was testing them antithetical couplet.


Before entering university, in addition to the basic books, the students should learn the Enlightenment of sound and law, the shadow of dragon whip, qionglin, zengguanxianwen, etc.

Among them, such as “ABC of Sound Meters in Chinese Poetry", "Ancient Book", "Instructions for Preschool Education" and "The Wisdom of Ancient Aphorisms" are to teach students to understand the rules of sound and law and to compare and match. In the process of learning rhyme, at the same time, they begin to understand and master the rhyme of poetry, and learn a lot of vocabulary and ancient allusions.


Nowadays, there is a saying that few of the students who have been taught can't make antithetical couplet.

 

Especially this simple kind of couplet.


After two losses in the test, Xue Juncai was obviously smart. almost scholar He finished asking, he didn't wait to see who asked, so he answered first. Then Xue Tingxaing failed to answer successfully several times.


It can be seen that Xue Juncai has done well in his studies. He could answer scholar He’s every couplet.


"I recently lamented because of my mood. I occasionally got a couplet. So far, I haven't got a suitable second line of a couplet. Let's test you two. It may be too hard for you now, but it's OK to try it." Scholar He took back his eyes and looked at scholar Qiao and said, "If brother Qiao is also interested, you can try to solve the problem of mine for many days."


Scholar Qiao smiled slightly, knowing that this was He's idea of contest.


As the saying goes, there is no first in literature and no second in martial arts. In several nearby villages, he and scholar He passed the exam. But He's reputation on the outside hasn't been obvious, then he will have a comparison. All of this Qiao can understand it.


"Brother He, I would like to hear."


Scholar He touched his beard and said, "One person is big. Two people are heaven. The human relationship is bigger than the heaven."


Xue Tingxiang's eyes flashed, and his eyes crossed on the faces of He and Qiao, and then fell on Xue Juncai's face. Seeing that he bowed his head in contemplation, he also bowed his head.


There was a silence in the hall, and they didn't dare to speak out. They couldn't figure out that it was the two small students who were tested and how the two scholars compete,too?


All of a sudden, there was a clear clapping.


Scholar Qiao said, "Two trees make a forest, three trees make a forest.The forest is thick, and the dense trees become forest."


Xue Tingxiang thought to himself: in fact, it's not difficult, but it is not easy,neither. It is not difficult to match the level with the rhythm, but to change the Chinese words.


Scholar He’s “One person is big. Two people are heaven.” is successful for the later sentences. And Qiao uses “Two trees to make a forest and Three trees to make a forest.” to match, which is amazing.


In fact, he also came up with the answer before scholar Qiao, but he knew that he and Xue Juncai were not the main examiners of this question, so he would be silent. Now that Qiao has already matched up, he naturally doesn't need to be afraid of stealing the show. After all, he and Xue Juncai are the two candidates in the test.


He raised his head and said, "I also have the answer."

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Homer Tantiado 2020-05-23 14:48
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