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Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee

por Robert van Gulik (Tradutor)

Outros autores: Situ Qing (Editor)

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

Séries: Judge Dee: Publication order (0), Judge Dee: Chronological order

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7841728,575 (3.78)48
Long before Western writers had even conceived the idea of writing detective stories, the Chinese had developed a long tradition of literary works that chronicled the cases of important district magistrates. One of the most celebrated of these was Judge Dee, who lived in the seventh century a.d. This book, written anonymously in the eighteenth century, interweaves three of Judge Dee's most baffling cases: a double murder among traveling merchants, the fatal poisoning of a bride on her wedding night, and the suspicious death of a shop keeper with a beautiful wife. The crimes take him up and down the great silk routes, into ancient graveyards where he consults the spirits of the dead, and through all levels of society, leading him to some brilliant detective work.… (mais)
  1. 61
    A Morbid Taste for Bones por Ellis Peters (avalon_today)
    avalon_today: one is a monk, one is a judge. but both tell a good story of mystery
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Inglês (13)  Holandês (2)  Espanhol (1)  Francês (1)  Todas as línguas (17)
Mostrando 1-5 de 17 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
A fascinating glimpse into life in 7th century CE China, translated in the 1940s from a 19th century Chinese manuscript that appears to preserve a genuine account of investigations undertaken by the magistrate of a small city.

Judge Dee is insightful, ethically scrupulous and morally strict, slightly softened by compassion. However, in the context of his culture, the use of torture, graphically described, is a legitimate judicial tool. I found these sections uncomfortable reading, but I guess that readers who enjoy "torture porn" movies might get a kick from these sections.

The current (2024) Netflix series excludes torture, but includes a few fight scenes, which I had thought was pandering to the modern vogue for adding martial arts to spice up the action, and was pleasantly surprised to read a few examples of Judge Dee's lieutenants exhibiting their "Chinese boxing and wrestling".

I really enjoyed this, and will continue with van Gulik's self-penned sequels. ( )
  Michael.Rimmer | May 19, 2024 |
En 1948 el diplomático y sinólogo holandés Robert van Gulik halló una serie de textos anteriores al siglo XVIII, en los que se narraban varios misterios situados en diversos lugares de China en el siglo VII. A partir de este material y de la existencia histórica del juez y diplomático Jen-djieh Di, Robert van Gulik creó una de las series de misterio más divertidas y emocionantes jamás escritas. En esta primera entrega de la serie, Di se enfrenta como juez a sus tres primeros casos, a cuál más enigmático.
  Natt90 | Nov 9, 2022 |
Judge Dee was a 7th century Chinese magistrate and statesman, of the Tang Dynasty. His cases were recorded in the Imperial archives, but most have not survived. In the 18th century, three cases were written into an anonymous Chinese mystery novel, Dee Goong An. Mystery novels were a popular Chinese genre, but usually with a strong supernatural element that Robert van Gulik thought would be unacceptable to western readers. Dee Goong An mostly lacks that element, and in 1949, van Gulik translated it into English. After that, he wrote his own entirely fictional adventures of Judge Dee, but this book is the only place to find the historical, or believed to be historical, cases of the historical Judge Dee.

Chinese district magistrates were completely responsible for peace and order in their districts, and in the investigation of serious crimes, they acted as judge, prosecutor, and detective. In the course of investigating his cases, Dee uses deceit, disguise, divination, dreams, and also threats and torture. Chinese law required that no one could be executed without a confession, and so even a case with overwhelming evidence might require torture. On the other hand, if an accused person died under torture without confessing, the magistrate and his entire staff could be executed. So, it was a potentially risky strategy.

The three cases are a bride poisoned on her wedding night, a double murder involving two silk merchants in a small town in the district, and a murder of small shopkeeper in another small town. That last murder wasn't recognized as murder for nearly a year, until Judge Dee, investigating the case of the silk merchants, overhears a remark about the death, the widow's retreat from all social life, and the fact that her young daughter has become mute. It's this case that poses the greatest danger and the greatest challenge to Dee.

The stories are good, interesting, and well-paced, and there's added interest because these stories reflect Chinese law and Chinese custom, even with the Ming dynasty anachronisms introduced by the anonymous Chinese author. It's a very enjoyable read, or listen, and well worth your time.

I bought this audiobook. ( )
  LisCarey | Sep 9, 2021 |
Een heel interessant boek, omdat deze 18e-eeuwse Chinese detective, door Van Gulik vertaald in het Engels, zijn inspiratie was voor de Rechter Tie serie. Interessant, maar als boek zelf niet zo bijzonder goed, vond ik. Het behandelt net als de Tie's drie misdaden, er zijn vaste helpers, het rechtssysteem is min of meer dat van Tie en je ziet ook concrete voorbeelden die Van Gulik in zijn eigen boeken gebruikt (zoals hij ook daar in de nawoorden meestal uitlegt, zoals in de Koreaanse lakwerker en de theepot). Dit boek is door Van Gulik in feite niet alleen vertaald maar ook bewerkt: in het uitstekende nawoord legt hij o.a. uit hoe Chinese detectives in elkaar zitten, met veel meer aandacht voor het bovennatuurlijke dan wij willen, geen puzzel, veel uitvoeriger beschrijvingen, veel meer personen. Ten behoeve van de westerse lezer heeft vG een boek uitgekozen dat het minst afwijkt van wat wij willen en dat nog wat bewerkt. Opvallend is hoe Tie schreeuwt en tiert, hoe hard hij mensen aanpakt op niks af, al bedriegt zijn gevoel hem niet, wat een pure rauwdouwen zijn helpers zijn. En daardoor hoe wijs, rechtvaardig en grootmoedig van Guliks Tie is. De zaken zijn: een roofmoord, een moord die de inspiratie bood voor Nagels in Ning-Tsjo en een vergiftigde bruid. ( )
  Harm-Jan | Apr 18, 2020 |
In this book, Judge Dee handles three cases. In the first, two traveling silk merchants stay at a hostel and are later found murdered. The hostel owner is accused of robbing and killing them, although it's immediately clear to Judge Dee that there's more to the case than that. In the second, Judge Dee listens to an old woman's story about her son's death and her daughter-in-law's strange behavior in the period since then. He immediately suspects that the son was poisoned and that his wife had something to do with it. But can he get her to confess? The third case involves a beautiful young bride who may have been poisoned by a jealous scholar.

Although van Gulik explained in his notes that, contrary to modern Western mystery readers' expectations, Judge Dee would be handling these cases simultaneously, I didn't initially understand what that meant. I figured that it would be like mystery novels where one mystery takes precedence but little ones crop up in the middle for a bit of variety. Or perhaps it would be more like a short story anthology, with each story stitched together with transitional scenes in which criminals were punished or Judge Dee got caught up on his paperwork.

Instead, Judge Dee went hunting for clues/information about the double murder and accidentally stumbled across another mystery. He couldn't just ignore it, so he started investigating that one too. And, although a single symbolism-filled dream gave Judge Dee hints for all three cases, none of the cases were related in any way. It was definitely different from what I'm used to in my mystery reading, but not in a bad way.

All right, backing up a bit: I originally bought this during a used book shopping trip because I remembered watching and enjoying Detective Dee and the Phantom Flame. It was way more action-packed than this book, and I don't recall the movie's Detective Dee ever torturing anyone the way Judge Dee did, but I might have blocked that out. Still, despite the differences, I'm glad the movie got me to try this book.

While I probably would have found the mysteries interesting without van Gulik's notes, there are several aspects of the book that likely would have taken me aback without the context that he provided. The torture, for one thing, as well as the way some of the final sentencing was carried out. There was also a bit of an edutainment factor - van Gulik's analysis of the legal aspects of the book was fascinating, and I'm looking forward to eventually reading the original Judge Dee books he wrote after translating this book.

I was somewhat worried that this would be a dry read, but thankfully that turned out not to be the case, and van Gulik's notes added another level to my enjoyment. Although this can't quite be read with the same expectations one might have for a modern Western mystery - it was a shock when, before even seeing the crime scene, Judge Dee had a warden beaten for the way he'd handled the investigation's initial steps, and I winced at the part where Judge Dee decided to forgo an autopsy on a poisoning victim because the victim's family was so scholarly and respectable - it wasn't as far outside modern mystery expectations as I thought it might be. There were even a few nice humorous bits here and there (or at least humorous to me). I got a kick out of the false name Judge Dee chose for himself at one point in the story, as well as Ma Joong (one of Judge Dee's lieutenants) excitement at getting to play the part of a thief.

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.) ( )
  Familiar_Diversions | Jul 28, 2019 |
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Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
van Gulik, RobertTradutorautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Qing, SituEditorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Bramhall, MarkNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Raver, LornaNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Rudnicki, StefanNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Wetering, Janwillem van deIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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Robert Hans van Gulik translated this book from the 18th century Chinese original, and then wrote a series of books himself on the same pattern as the Chinese genre, with Judge Dee as the protagonist. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Celebrat...
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Long before Western writers had even conceived the idea of writing detective stories, the Chinese had developed a long tradition of literary works that chronicled the cases of important district magistrates. One of the most celebrated of these was Judge Dee, who lived in the seventh century a.d. This book, written anonymously in the eighteenth century, interweaves three of Judge Dee's most baffling cases: a double murder among traveling merchants, the fatal poisoning of a bride on her wedding night, and the suspicious death of a shop keeper with a beautiful wife. The crimes take him up and down the great silk routes, into ancient graveyards where he consults the spirits of the dead, and through all levels of society, leading him to some brilliant detective work.

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