The research of the oldest preserved language samples of China is of fundamental importance for sinology. Not only do these texts, in the form of oracle bone, bronze, and stone inscriptions as well as bamboo, wood and silk manuscripts, open up new perspectives on the history of ancient Chinese cultures, they also provide an important source for research into historical semantics, as they can often be dated more reliably than the traditional literature. In the library of the CSTCC, which is currently being established, the most important new publications in the field of inscriptions and manuscripts are collected. The stock, which includes the relevant corpora of inscriptions as well as the Tsinghua, Liye, Beida and Changsha manuscripts published to date, will be continuously expanded and supplemented. It can also be accessed via the OPAC of the Ruhr University Bochum.

Many members of the CSTCC are engaged in the research of precisely these textual foundations: Christoph Harbsmeier, for example, has published articles on the manuscripts of Mawangdui and Guodian, while Christian Schwermann is currently working on the administrative documents from Liye. In his dissertation “Between Disaster, Punishment, and Blame: The Semantic Field of Guilt in Early Chinese Texts”, Thomas Crone is researching a large number of Shang period oracle bone inscriptions, Zhou period bronze inscriptions, and Han period manuscripts. In addition, together with Felix Bohlen, he recently translated texts from the Tsinghua and Shanghai corpora.


  • Schwermann, Christian, and Wang Ping 王平. "Female Human Sacrifice in Shang-Dynasty Oracle-Bone Inscriptions." The International Journal of Chinese Character Studies / Shìjiè hànzì tōngbào 世界漢字通報 1, no. 1 (2015): 49–83.
  • Schwermann, Christian. "Composite Authorship in Western Zhōu Bronze Inscriptions: The Case of the 'Tiānwáng guǐ' 天亡簋 Inscription." In: That Wonderful Composite Called Author: Authorship in East Asian Literatures from the Beginnings to the Seventeenth Century. (East Asian Comparative Literature and Culture 4). Ed. by Christian Schwermann and Raji C. Steineck. Leiden, Boston: Brill, 2014, 30–57.
  • Harbsmeier, Christoph. „A Reading of the Guōdiàn 郭店 Manuscript Yǔcóng 語叢 1 as a Masterpiece of Early Chinese Analytic Philosophy and Conceptual Analysis.” Studies in Logic 4, no. 3 (2011): 3–56.
  • Shǐ Kèlǐ 史克禮 [i.e. Christian Schwermann]. "'Yú dǐng bǐ' míngwén xìngzhì jí 'xià mín wú zhì' de yǒuguān wèntí" 魚鼎匕銘文性質及下民無智的有關問題 [Typological Classification of the "Yú dǐng bǐ" Inscription and the Problem of its Phrase "The Lower Classes are Stupid" in the Context of Ancient Chinese Literature]. Zhōngguó wénzì yánjiū 中國文字研究 [Research on Chinese Script] 4 (2003): 130–135.


  • Bohlen, Felix. „Bao Shuya yu Xi Peng zhi jian 鮑叔牙與隰朋之諫 (The Remonstrance of Bao Shuya and Xi Peng).“ From Shanghai (5). Translated in: Felix Bohlen. “Narrative Discourses on Power and Rule: The Anecdote and the Exemplum, Discussed on the Basis of the Shanghai-Manuscript 'The Remonstrance of Bao Shuya and Xi Peng'.” In: The History of Remonstrance in China - From the Beginnings to the Medieval Period. (Studien zu Macht und Herrschaft). Ed. by Christian Schwermann and Thomas Crone. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht/Bonn University Press, expected 2020.
  • Bohlen, Felix. “Fu Yue zhi ming 傅說之命.” From Tsinghua (3). Translated in: Felix Bohlen. „Vom Mauerstampfer zum Minister – Zur Darstellung der Ratgeberfigur Fu Yue im Spiegel antiker chinesischer Texte.“ In: Die Figur des Ratgebers. (Studien zu Macht und Herrschaft). Ed. by Alheydis Plassmann. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht/Bonn University Press, expected 2020.
  • Bohlen, Felix. „Yue gong qi shi 越公其事.“ From Tsinghua (7). In Felix Bohlen's dissertation (not yet published).