Dunhuang Classic

The Dunhuang Classic (碁(棋)经) is believed to be the earliest surviving go manual.

Table of contents

The document

The text was written on a scroll found in the [ext] Mogao caves near [ext] Dunhuang, a Chinese city on the [ext] Silk Road in Gansu provience. The scroll is 15.5 cm × 240 cm and has been estimated to have been written c. 550 AD.[1][2][9]

The text is being conserved, sponsored by Zenmachine, at the [ext] British library in London as part of the [ext] International Dunhuang Project. That project provides an [ext] online copy[4] of the Dunhuang Classic, including a translation[6] of the first chapter.


There are no diagrams in the text, and the (first) part contains mostly kyu level advice, described as Chen Ping?s strategies.

The first chapter ends with:

Although, this essay is meager and clumsy, it can reflect the patterns of things. Those who play accordingly will stay alive without loss.

The second chapter deals with ladders.[7]

The sixth chapter deals with rules of weiqi.[10]


Dunhuang Classic last edited by on November 24, 2020 - 02:34
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