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Old Chinese Ballad Known to Everyone ;)

So, as Chinese is already out on Duolingo, here's an old Chinese ballad for you guys, in both Chinese (simplified) and English forms ^^ http://tsoidug.org/Literary/Mulan_Ballad_Simp.pdf

Everyone knows the story of Mulan I suppose :D After all, you all would have watched Disney ;) Mulan is one of my favourite animated movies, to be sincere x)

And here's how the story originated :) I really loved the poem (the way it sounds in Chinese is marvelous). I hope you like it too. After all, it will let you brag you have read "The Ballad of Mulan" in Chinese Simplified ;) (so what if English translation was right there :D )

November 19, 2017



Based on my experience, I noticed that some of the Hanzis used in the document are used in the past, but I understood what each sentence is saying. The story may not be simple for some foreigners to challenge their reading without reading the translations; this is due to the greater emphasis of characters used to form the sentences. However, with the translations and pinyins, these would help the foreigners a lot to read literatures like this.

Overall, wonderful story! I recommend anyone at any level to read literatures and books. This will offer much experience to observe how each sentence is formed. :)


I agree completely! ^^ I can't argue with you about Chinese as I already know you have more experience than me :D But I still agree x) And yes, I believe everyone should try and tackle the books in their original versions, it greatly improves the language knowledge! (personal experience).

And, as my Canadian aunt says, "One can never feel the same pleasure reading a translated book than when reading the original version". ;) Because when you read a translated story, the true feelings and emotions of the author are often lost. Better to feel the poetry of words in their original version. ^^


Thank you, thank you for giving us this wonderful treasure trove of Chinese culture that http:tsoidug.org is! I've learned so much from reading the analysis of the Disney movie Story of Mulan (Mulan’s Near Execution: A Disney Fabrication: http://www.tsoidug.org/papers_mulan.php).

I know there are a lot of myths and half-truths about different cultures floating around --unverified-- all the time, but this article sheds a light on some of those interpretations. Is the West needing to mirror its own attitude towards women? The answer is, probably yes.

The French have Joan of Arc (1412-1431), who at 17-years-old, had a personal vision; following that vision, she put a coat of arm on and, like a man, valiantly returned Normandy and France to the French King's authority by pushing the invading Brits out of Normandy and beyond. What did we, the French, do? We burned her at the stake, for political expediency, using trumped-up charges of heresy. Sad. So what do we do with the Mulan story? We "nearly" execute her. .Isn't the parallel here rather striking? I have yet to find or remember the name of another woman general in the European wars since Joan of Arc's time!

But now I really want to read the famous historical novel from the 1300’s, “Water Margin” (水浒传 shui hu zhuan); there were 3 women generals who were part of the famous group of 108 leaders, and the novel was written almost around the same time as Joan of Arc! Is there a version of Water Margin that an HSK3 student like me can access without pulling her hair out after the first twenty pages?

Thank you again for asking us to read this Chinese ballad: it has opened many more doors to my exploring the Chinese culture. I had so much fun reading it aloud with emphasis and all) just as if I were a professional story-teller in rural China! 哈哈哈!


I just heard Shui Hu Zhuan and gave you an upvote just for that! Since you are comparing it to Joan d'Arc, I am assuming that you believe those tales to be real. In that case, I regret to inform you that it's fiction, although it may have some real parts behind it, like Romance of the Three Kingdoms, does.


And yes, have a Lingot! :-)


the chinese one is required to be a part of the chinese program at secondary 1


don't mean any offence , but I think the English is not accurate enough


I honestly thought this was going to be 花木兰祝英台 or something along those lines when I clicked on that discussion. I beg to differ with the "known to everyone" part in the title in regards to Mulan, as I don't think that it is anything more than a folklore in Chinese culture. 花木兰祝英台 on the other hand, is the Chinese equivalent of Romeo and Juliet, so I highly recommend everyone interested in Chinese culture to check it out.

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