Cases from Ujam’s Miscellaneous Writings (ca. 1833–56) by Chang T’ae-gyŏng

In: Asian Medicine

Chang T’ae-gyŏng 張泰慶 (1809–87) recorded the details of 47 medical cases and 130 prescriptions in his medical treatise Ujam’s Miscellaneous Writings (Ujam chapchŏ 愚岑雜著).1 As a scholarly physician, Chang treated people of all ages and both sexes in what is today Kwangju, South Chŏlla, the south-western province of Korea. In the hope of documenting his knowledge and experience for the benefit of later generations, Chang collated the various cases and prescriptions together with some brief associated writings, such as his own theory of acupuncture, parts of a poem that he had composed, his friend’s poem in response, an explanation of the meaning of his sobriquet ‘Ujam’ (ho 號), and a ‘written prayer’ (ch’ukmun 祝文) for the text. Although they were circulated locally, it appears that Chang’s cases were not officially published during his lifetime. Chang’s descriptions of his healing activities not only exemplify scholarly medicine in practice, but in them are also found his dialogic interaction with various patients and folk healers.

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  • 1

    In 2010, the Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine (kiom) published a Korean translation of Chang’s cases, which were originally composed in classical Chinese. As the original document is not accessible, my English translation is based on the edited volume by kiom, Ujam’s Miscellaneous Writings (Ujam chapchŏ 愚岑雜著). This volume includes both the original Chinese-language text and a Korean translation, with the addition of a brief introduction. The editor of the volume adds all the punctuation marks in the original sentences. For the latest Korean research on Chang’s cases, see An Sang-u 2008 and Pak Sang-yŏng et al. 2011. In my edition, the priority was to ensure readability rather than to present a word-for-word translation. I would like to extend a special thanks to Yi-li Wu and Marta Hanson for their suggestions in revising this translation. All mistakes are mine alone.

  • 17

    For example, see Yang Dongho et al. 2006, p. 154.

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