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This rubbing is made from stone inscriptions engraved by Yang Tan (act. twelfth century), Hong Mai (1123–1202), and others at Gushu in present-day Dangtu, Anhui Province during the Chunxi reign (1174–1189) of the Southern Song dynasty (1127–1279). The rubbing made in the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) preserves the calligraphy on the damaged stone and features poetry from Su Shi (1037–1101), Lu You (1125–1210), and Su Shunqin (1008–1048).
In 1084 (the seventh year of the Yuanfeng reign, 1078–1085), Su Shi was sent from Huangzhou to Ruzhou to serve in a minor military post. On the way, he passed through Jinling (present-day Nanjing); arriving at Zhongshan, he visited the retired statesman Wang Anshi (1021–1086). Although the two had conflicting political views, they overcame the differences of the past in what has become a much-shared account.
Translated and edited by Adam J. Ensign and Kang Xiaolu