ISBN 13: 9788806183677
ISBN 10: 8806183672
Also known as Hong Lou Meng, this is arguably China's greatest literary masterpiece. A chronicle of a noble family in the eighteenth century; but the splendor of enchanting gardens, pleasure pavilions, and daily life of the most sophisticated refinements hides the realities of decay and self-destruction.About the Author:Cao Xueqin (1715? - 1763?) is the author of A Dream of Red Mansions. His personal name was Zhan, and his style (name adopted by a man at his coming of age), Mengruan. He was also know as Xueqin, Qinpu or Qinxi.His ancestral home was in what is now Liaoyang City, in Northeast China, and his forebears, although Han Chinese themselves, had been accepted into the ManchuRight White Banner. For three successive generations, a period of some 60 years, his ancestors had held the post of Textile Commissioner in Jiangning (present-day Nanjing). His paternal great grandmother, surnamed Sun, had been nursemaid to the infant who was later to become the Kangxi emperor's study companion and close attendant, accompanying him when he came to the throne on four of his six inspection tours of the south, a singular honor. After the death of Cao Yin, the family, under the headship of Cao Xueqin's father Cao Fu, continued to enjoy the emperor's favor, but when the Yongzhen emperor ascended the throne, Cao Fu was removed from his office and punished on charges of financial mismanagement and incompetence in the management of courier stations. The family property was confiscated, and the Caos' halcyon days came to an end. They moved to eijing. Cao Xueqin, who had spent his childhood in pampered luxury, now shared the family's fate of a wretched existence. Dogged by poverty, he eventually moved to arustic hovel on the western outskirts of the capital. The death of his young son in 1762 was a crushing blow to Cao, from which he never recovered, and on February 12, 1763 he himself passed away.