Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
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明 傳謝環 杏園雅集圖 卷
Elegant Gathering in the Apricot Garden

Artist:
After Xie Huan (Chinese, 1377–1452)
Period:
Ming dynasty (1368–1644)
Date:
ca. 1437
Culture:
China
Medium:
Handscroll; ink and color on silk
Dimensions:
Image: 14 5/8 x 95 3/4 in. (37.1 x 243.2 cm) Overall with mounting: 14 3/4 in. x 41 ft. 11 1/4 in. (37.5 x 1278.3 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Purchase, The Dillon Fund Gift, 1989
Accession Number:
1989.141.3
Not on view
This handscroll is one of two similar compositions attributed to Xie Huan that document a gathering of nine scholar-officials in Beijing on April 6, 1437. The original composition, prepared for the party's host, Yang Rong (1371–1440), who is depicted wearing a red robe in the first group of seated figures, is now in the Zhenjiang Municipal Museum. This painting, probably made for the senior guest, Yang Shiqi (1365–1444), who is seated in a blue robe next to Yang Rong, is a condensed version executed by one of Xie Huan's associates. In spite of the apparent informality of the subject, the painting is carefully crafted to emphasize the power, prestige, and cultivation of the officials. The men's substantial robes and formal poses underscore the dignity of their positions, and their political ranks are distinguished by their placement in the composition. Those of the greatest status, Yang Shiqi and Yang Rong, are at the center of the composition; guests of lower rank are closer to the periphery of the scroll. The antiques and scholarly paraphernalia surrounding the men suggest their literary accomplishments and aesthetic discernment.

Following the painting are poems composed by the participants to commemorate the gathering, beginning with a preface inscribed in a dignified clerical script by Yang Shiqi, the oldest participant and the highest-ranking government official of his day. The Qing official and later owner of the scroll Weng Tonghe (1830–1904) inscribed the mounting in front of the painting with a listing of the nine officials.
Inscription: No artist’s inscription, signature or seal

Label Strip

Unidentified Artist, 1 column in standard script, undated:

眀賢杏園雅集圖 諸賢題跋

Colophons

1. Weng Tonghe 翁同龢 (1830–1904), 13 columns in standard script, undated (on brocade border preceding the painting):

由前至後按記中所敘次第列之,畫師謝庭循佚焉。
步行後至者三人:學士陳循、學士李時勉、左庶子周述。
倚石屏而坐者三人:少詹事王直、少傅楊士奇、大學士楊榮。
傍杏花列坐者三人:少詹事王英、大宗伯楊溥、學士錢習禮。

2. Yang Shiqi 楊士奇 (1365–1444), 24 columns in clerical script, dated 1437; 3 seals

杏園雅集序
古之君子其閒居未嘗一日而忘天下國家也,囗承祿擔爵以事乎君而有自逸者乎。詩曰:“夙夜匪懈,以事一人。”古之賢臣所以事其君也。今之居承明延閣者,職在文學論思,然率寅而入,酉而出,恭勤左右,猶慎歃焉。慮豪分之,或闕囗取自逸者乎?固盡其分之當然也。若勞息張弛之宜,則雖古之人有所不撥焉?乃正統丁巳三月之朔,當休假南郡,楊公及予八人相與游於建安楊公之杏園,而永嘉謝君庭循來會。園有林木泉石之勝,時卉競芳,香氣芬茀。建安公喜嘉客之集也。凡所以資娛樂者悉具。客亦欣然,如釋羈策濯清爽而游於物之外者,賓主交適,清談不窮,觴豆肆,陳歌詠,並作於是,謝君寫而為圖。嗟夫一日之樂也,情與境會,而于于冠衣之聚皆羔羊之大夫備菁莪之儀,洽臺萊之意,又皆不忘乎衛武自警之心,可為庶幾古之人者。題曰雅集不其然哉?故遂序於圖之次,而詩又次焉。廬陵楊士奇序。 [印]:泰和、楊氏士奇、清白之家

3. Yang Shiqi 楊士奇 (1365–1444), 9 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

鞠躬奉臣職,肅肅恒自旦。朝下趨經幃,臨夕出東觀。釐務日有常,黽勉在文翰。衰齡負宿痾,寧不懷伴奐。兹晨屬休沐,聯鑣越閭閈。適我同志良,蕭爽坐林館。維時天宇澄,青陽候過半。好鳥鳴交交,芳卉羅絢爛。朱絃一再彈,圖帙亦娛玩。中筵錯肥甘,觴斝行無筭。偶斯一餉樂,沉欎豁舒散。雅詠含宮商,高懷薄雲漢。合歡情所洽,輔仁道攸贊。各期勵乃脩,庶用表楨榦。士奇 [印]:穀軒、楊氏士奇、清白之家

4. Yang Rong 楊榮 (1371–1440), 8 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

惠風扇和氣,萬物熈春陽。顧玆紅杏園,花開正芬芳。在公稍休暇,況復遇時康。爰與衆君子,開筵泛華觴。羣情惬清賞,為歡殊未央。緬懷洛中會,九老皆令望。娛意今則同,撫迹非所當。幸逢聖明主,恭己臨萬方。吾儕忝在軄,豈敢忘賛襄。載歌蟋蟀詩,好樂期無荒。建安楊榮 [印]:建安、楊氏勉仁、大學士之章

5. Yang Pu 楊溥 (1372–1446), 6 columns in semi-cursive script, undated; 3 seals:

太和暢羣芳,斯文屬清暇。況復名園中,樂事藑幽雅。
達觀不遐遺,同仁仰神化。願兹春陽煇,遍照覆盆下。
南郡楊溥 [印]:南郡、弘濟、澹菴

6. Qian Xili 錢習禮 (1373–1461), 7 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

日出天宇淨,惠風汎芳園。杏花暧始繁,幽鳥時自喧。朝回一來集,隆隆駐輕軒。君子雅好客,文燕忘囂煩。嘉¬¬肴陳廣席,旨酒盈華尊。抽豪發浩倡,傾座聆清言。良辰属休沐,皆云荷君恩。嘉會諒難遇,斯樂焉可諼。文江錢習禮 [印]: 錢榦、 習禮、一印不辨

7. Chen Xün 陳循 (1385–1462), 7 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

濟濟儒林彥,晨下玉堂直。時和景物麗,駕言適所適。芳圃負城隅,坦蕩囂氛隔。長松蔭仙葩,流泉湛寒碧。展席藹蘭熏,開尊注瓊液。主賓諧琴瑟,賡歌叶金石。蕭散樂和洽,從容見儀則。視彼山隂逰,清談竟奚益。泰和陳循 [印]:泰和、德遵、芳洲茅屋

8. Li Shimian 李時勉 (1374–1450), 8 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

疏雨過城闕,草木生華滋。良辰得清暇,可以遂遨嬉。杏園既幽雅,亭館亦翬蜚。林深日色淨,花發香風隨。鶴舞臨廣除,鶯鳴在高枝。景會神已超,目暢心自怡。從來調鼎資,能斡造化機。萬匯各有適,而我亦奚為。陶然發孤詠,焉知西日微。安成李時勉 [印]:古廉、時勉、非曰能之

9. Wang Ying 王英 (1376–1450), 9 columns in semi-cursive script, undated; 3 seals:

勝日游名園,欣時遂休沐。逍遙列冠盖,俯仰窺化育。輕風扇微喧,鳴鳥出幽谷。
林杏花正繁,芳蒲葉初綠。羣卉一何妍,紛敷播清馥。舉觴矚麗景,主勸賓屢復。
一飲詠臺萊,再飲歌伐木。為歡情所孚,既醉禮尤肅。慚予屬末坐,咳唾乏珠玉。
趁陪幸無棄,道義永相篤。臨川王英 [印]:汲古齋,王英時彥,泉坡草堂

10. Wang Zhi 王直 (1379–1462), 9 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

穆穆春陽,杏華既繁。爰與君子,樂此中園。鳴鳥在上,芳草在下。
惠風徐來,心焉孔豫。豈無旨酒,亦有嘉肴。載勸載醻,以永今朝。
時之和矣,物亦遂只。天子萬年,德音不已。
右四章,章四句。泰和王直 [印]:江表、行儉、印菴

11. Zhou Shu 周述 (died 1436), 10 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

東城地佳麗,獨此名園勝。維時春日暄,繞径皆紅杏。館閣屬休暇,共喜逢明聖。羣公遂過從,濟濟冠纓盛。觴酌屢獻酬,雍容相愛敬。方投穎中轄,且盡關西興。豈無絲竹音,雅詠足怡性。久坐酒欲醒,徐行天未暝。丹青託容貌,秀氣森相映。良會欣在玆,非才愧難稱。爲此今日歡,誰云昔賢逈。高風諒可追,願與洛中並。廬陵周述 [印]:太園、周崇述印、葦菴

12. Yang Rong 楊榮 (1371–1440), 40 columns in standard script, undated; 3 seals:

《杏園雅集圖》後序
正統二年丁巳春三月朔,適休假之晨,館閣諸公過,予因延於所居之杏園,永嘉謝君庭循旅寓伊邇,亦適來會。時春景澄明,惠風和暢,花卉競秀,芳香襲人,觴酌序行,琴詠間作,群情蕭散,衎然以樂。謝君精繪事,遂用着色寫同會諸公及當時景物。倚石屏而坐者三人,其左少傅廬陵楊公,其右為榮,左之次少詹事泰和王公。傍杏花而坐者三人,其中大宗伯南郡楊公,左少詹事臨川王公,右侍讀學士文江錢公。徐行後至者四人,前左庶子吉水周公,次侍讀學士安成李公,又次侍講學士泰和陳公。最後至者謝君,其官錦衣衛千戶,而十人者皆衣冠偉然,華髮交映,又有執事及傍侍童子九人,治飲饌傔從五人,而景物趣韻曲臻于妙。廬陵公喜題曰:“杏園雅集”。既序其端,復與諸公賦詠成什,乃屬予識其後。仰惟國家列聖相承,圗惟治化,以貽永久。吾輩忝與侍從,涵濡深恩,蓋有年矣。今聖天子嗣位,海内晏安,民物康阜,而近職朔望休沐,聿循舊章。予數人者得,遂其所適,是皆皇上之賜,圗其事以紀太平之盛,蓋亦宜也。昔唐之香山九老、宋之洛社十二耆英,俱以年德高邁,致政閒居,得優游詩酒之樂,後世圗之,以為美談。彼固成於休退之餘,此則出於任職之暇,其適同而其迹殊也。然考其實,爵位履歷非同出一時,聯事一司。今予輩年望雖未敢擬昔人,而膺密勿之,寄同官禁署意氣相孚,追視昔人,殆不讓矣。後之人安知不又有羡於今日者哉。雖然感上恩而圗報,稱因宴樂而戒怠荒,予雖老,尚願從諸公之後而加勉焉。榮祿大夫少傅工部尚書兼謹身殿大學士楊榮書。 [印]:白鶴山房、楊氏勉仁、大學士之章

13. Weng Tonghe 翁同龢 (1830–1904), 13 columns in standard script, undated:

明《杏園雅集圖》歌,有序今歸嶰谷。
是圗為楊文貞公、楊文敏公、楊文定公、東王、西王、李公時勉、周公敍、錢公習禮及陳循,寫此圗者錦衣千戶謝某也。
有明開國後,宣廟始陽春。舂容太平樂,元氣洽八垠。廟堂多唱和,禁綱無邅¬¬屯。
三楊最鎮靜,鼎足調大鈞。二王長六官,耆德尤嶙峋。忠文真神師,心學長成均。
吉水負史才,宋金細討論。有如何閣鳳,和聲清不渾。薰風護玉燭,祥光生五雲。
試讀《杏園詩》,丰采想垂紳。燕閒寫清娛,亦復念斯民。回憶錢侍郎,旁皇靖難辰。
滿朝重足立,誰人不杜門。遭逢黨禁解,白髮光絲綸。諸公韓富流,社稷之寳臣。
牽連及詞苑,同為東閣賓。泰階德星聚,餘事光斯文。其時已易世,履霜占初坤。
宣和[點去]仁將謝政,潛伏有寺人。老成繼淪喪,杏園俱蒙氛。乃知日中昃,消息如轉輪。
彼哉其泰和(陳循),叨玷舊德羣。一幅好東絹,莫逃忠佞魂。翻羡錦衣子,亦以驥尾存。
右錄全謝山先生詩。

14. Weng Tonghe 翁同龢 (1830–1904), 25 columns in standard script, undated:

《杏園雅集圗》一卷,眀正統丁巳[1437]暮春,建安楊文敏榮勉仁集諸同官八人於其所居杏園,而永嘉謝庭循為作圖也。八人者,泰和楊士奇東里諡文貞、石首楊溥澹庵諡文定、泰和王直抑庵諡文端、金谿王英時彥諡文忠、吉水錢習禮諡文肅、安福李時勉古廉諡忠文、吉水周述東墅、泰和陳循芳洲也。楊文敏入閣最早,文貞次之,文定最後,至正統三年戊午[1438]文定始進少保,武英殿大學士,時稱“三楊”。蓋以居第目之,泰和曰西,楊石首曰南,楊建安曰東。楊此圖作於前一年,尚未有“三楊”之稱,而九人同集,“三楊”者皆在焉。其餘六人,則陳芳洲以第一人及第,官至華蓋殿大學士,周東墅以第二人及第,李忠文官至國子祭酒,王文端吏部尚書,王文忠南京禮部尚書,錢文肅禮部右侍郎,並以文學躋清秩,而史稱“三楊”,學行才識雅操皆人所不及。又稱“東楊”性喜賓客,無稍崖岸,想見圖中雍容退食琴歌酒賦之雅韻矣。史稱士奇老疾,蓋在宣德初年,至是又經十載,則此暮春之集,南楊年六十六,東楊年六十七,西楊年七十三矣。謝庭循者不著於畫家傳,然王文端《抑庵集》有題庭循畫秋景云“君今善畫得供御。”則謝君當時以畫供奉者,非此卷亦罕傳其跡也。
紅杏尚書宋子京,杏園閣老伊誰稱。不知雙婢夾官燭,何如九老追耆英。
正統之初暮春首,是時蕭艾猶未萌。盎盎烘晴好風日,靚光不與凡卉爭。
多少江南春雨思,卷簾燕子泥喃聲。蘭亭次弟羣賢至,芸閣追隨後先輩。
石欄叢翠點春衣,流水淙琤閒鏘佩。琴書酒杯以次來,笑語繽紛度花氣。
休沐何煩問及句,宣德以來論故事。建安南郡偕東里,陳周兩王錢與李。
主人好客客復賢,宗伯宮端兼學士。七賢濟濟盡江西,時論狀元多吉水。
漸到三楊並直時,年傍七旬俱老矣。董家杏園同不同,想像近在東闉東。
坐依石床聼泉語,吟倚杏花仰看松。倚杏方憐紅襭茂,看松互比黃閣翁。
栽種莫區閑草木,筠心孰可侔公忠。乃知主人非好客,陳迹區區接茵席。
史書那易具苦哀,花下見爾真顔色。西楊南楊論楷格,奎章何減香羅蹟。
菭漬生綃裁數尺,寒食東風暮煙積。流雲一桁檻外橫,香霧空濛傳不得。
右錄覃谿先生記及詩。

15. Weng Tonghe 翁同龢 (1830–1904), 2 columns in semi-cursive script, dated 1898; 2 seals:

兩先生詩余十年前所錄,戊戌四月被旨放歸,撿篋得此,因題記。常熟翁同龢 [印]:叔平、同龢


Collectors’ seals

Yang Changxu 楊昌緒 (18th–19th c.)
昌、緒

Weng Tonghe 翁同龢 (1830–1904)
翁同龢長壽印記

Gu Heqing 顧鶴慶 (1766–1836)
顧鶴慶印

Weng Wange翁萬戈 (Wen-go Weng, born 1918)
翁萬戈鑑賞
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