the contents page from

Chieh Tzu Yuan Hua Chuan,


The Mustard Seed Garden Manual of Painting,

1679 - 1701.



PART I Preface to the first edition (1679); Book of Trees; Book of Rocks; Book of Jen-Wu (figures and living things in the landscape - staffage and accessories)

PART II Preface to the Complete Edition of 1701, Book of the Orchid, Book of the Bamboo, Book of the Plum, Book of the Crysanthemum.

PART III Book of Grasses, Insects, and Flowering Plants. Book of Feathers and Fur and Flowering Plants. Concluding Notes on the Preparation of Colours.

See particularly Notes on the Basic Principles, The Six canons, The Three Classes, the List of the Brushstrokes for modelling, the Six essentials, the Three Faults, a andThe Twelve Things to Avoid, e.g.

  • crowded ill arranged compositions
  • mountains without the beat of life
  • rocks with faces
  • trees with less than four main branches.