王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ):introduction about his biography and legend,main books and academic thoughts.

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王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ).

  
Brief Introduction
漢語名(Chinese Name): 王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ)Alias: 進之(Jìn Zhī), or 信之(Xìn Zhī)
Assumed Name: 海藏(Hǎi Cáng)English Name: Wang Haogu, or Haogu Wang(Given/Sur Name)
Nationality: HanBelief: Confucianism in early age,
 Taoism in late.
Hometown: Zhao Zhou(today's Zhao county,Hebei)Dates: about 1200~1308 A.D.
Main works: Over 20 kinds ever recorded,mainly 《陰證略例》(Yin Zheng Lue Li, or the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) 1 volume,《醫壘元戎》(Yi Lei Yuan Rong, or Fighting Diseases in Medical Field) 12 volumes,《此事難知》(Ci Shi Nan Zhi) 2 volumes,《癍論萃英》(Ban Lun Cui Ying) 1 volume,《湯液本草》(Tang Ye Ben Cao) 3 volumes; other works ever published but some lost:《斑疹論》(Ban Zhen Lun) 1 volumes,《本草實錄》(Ben Cao Shi Lu), 《活人節要歌括》(Huo Ren Jie Yao Ge Kuo),《痘疹論》(Dou Zhen Lun), 《標本論》(Biao Ben Lun),《錢氏補遺》(Qian Shi Bu Yi),《十二經要圖解》(Shi Er Jing Yao Tu Jie); Other works not ever published:《傷寒辨惑論》(Shang Han Bian Huo Lun),《仲景詳辨》(Zhong Jing Xiang Bian),《光明論》(Guang Ming Lun),etc.
Representative works: Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) 1 volume,Tang Ye Ben Cao 3 volumes,Yi Lei Yuan Rong(Fighting Diseases in Medical Field) 12 volumes,Ci Shi Nan Zhi(the Questions difficult to understand) 2 volumes,Ban Lun Cui Ying(the collected essential thesis on ecchymosis) 1 volume,etc.
Reputation: Miracle HerbalistStar-rating:   

Biography and legends:


 王好古Wáng Hǎogǔ 王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ): herbalist 王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ) is a distinguished sagacious physician ever lived in the 13th century and early of the 14th century, also known as Wang Jinzhi for his alias, or Wang Hai-Zang in his late year, Hai-Zang might be a Taoist monastic name, he is a prominent herbalist of the Yishui school during the Jin Yuan period, he mastered the ancient book Nei Jing(the Inner Canon), has an in-depth study of Zhongjing's theory, ever learned from herbalist Zhang Yuansu and Li Dongyuan, and developed the theory of his teachers, his chief contribution was the explanation of Yin syndromes and the use of warming tonics in the later stage of cold-induced diseases, developed and enriched the theory of TCM, had far and deep influences on later generations. Five of his books published ever since are extant and well-known.

 王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ), alias 進之(Jìn Zhī), titled 海藏(Hǎi Cáng), he was native to Zhao Zhou, ever followed master 張元素(Zhāng Yuánsù) and studied medicine with another disciple 李東垣(Lǐ Dōngyuán) together, but his age is 20 years younger than Li Dongyuan, later he also followed Li Dongyuan and took him as a teacher, inherited all theory of Li Dongyuan himself. Herbalist 張元素(Zhāng Yuánsù) attached importance to syndrome differentiation of the Zang-Fu viscera and emphasized the differentiation of cold-heat, deficiency-excess of the Zang-Fu viscera at which the disease is located, herbalist Li Dongyuan gave interpretations on the theory of the spleen and stomach, with extreme detections on endogenous hurt deficiency syndrome of the spleen and stomach. With both influence from herbalist Zhang Yuansu and Li Dongyuan, herbalist Wang Haogu also paid attention to ancient classics Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases.), hold his specific viewpoints and focused on the development of Yang deficiency from primordial Qi deficiency and presented as Three Yin syndromes, and Yang Deficiency syndrome which originated from primordial Qi, established a specific school and doctrine.

 About the date of herbalist Wang Haogu, some common popular articles recorded it as about year 1200~1264 A.D., this date was concluded by later generation according to some reign title records "Zhi Yuan" which was ever recorded in one of his works, but due to the possible confusion of reign title years and other facts and the preface date of his later works(the Wuxu year, Tang Ye Ben Cao), this popular date is doubtful and might be a mistake, the Wuxu year is the year 1298 A.D., according to other facts and his later works(such as the "Ren Chen" year records in the preface of the book Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes)), some latest study from historians concluded that his real date is about year 1200~1308 A.D..

 Wang Haogu knew well with ancient classics and history in his early age, his nature is clear and wise, know well about history and classics, hobby in medical prescriptions, passed Chin-shih(the highest imperial examinations) and was assigned as Jiao Shou of local state(Jiao Shou was an ancient title, similar as "Scholar" or "Professor"), also was assigned as an official titled "Ti Ju Guan Nei Yi Xue" in his late, the academic thoughts of herbalist Wang Haogu mainly came from ancient classics Nei Jing(the Inner Canon), Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases) etc., also affected by previous famous herbalist including 王叔和(Wáng Shūhé), 朱肱(Zhū Gōng), 許叔微(Xǔ Shūwēi), 韓祗和(Hán Zhīhé), and especially influenced by the spleen-stomach theory of his teacher herbalist Zhang Yuansu and the endogenous hurt theory of the spleen and stomach from his second teacher herbalist Li Dongyuan, and later he studied with the books of various schools ever since Qi Bo and Huang Di, was thoroughly familiar with them as the palm and fingers of his hand, all these contributed to the basis of his theory of Yin Syndromes and other theory.

Main books and academic thoughts:


 Major Works: herbalist Wang Haogu was known ever compiled and wrote works of over 20 kinds, some of them are survived till today, some lost, some not ever published, the works survived till today are known as: Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) in 1 volume, Yi Lei Yuan Rong(Fighting Diseases in Medical Field) in 12volumes,Ci Shi Nan Zhi in 2 volumes, Ban Lun Cui Ying, Tang Ye Ben Cao in 3 volumes, etc., among them the book Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) was regarded as his representative work. Other works under title Ban Zhen Lun in 1 volumes, other works from him known are Ben Cao Shi Lu, Huo Ren Jie Yao Ge Kuo, Dou Zhen Lun, Biao Ben Lun, Qian Shi Bu Yi, Shi Er Jing Yao Tu Jie, ever published, but some of them were lost. His other works ever recorded and known in ancient literature Shang Han Bian Huo Lun, Zhong Jing Xiang Bian, Guang Ming Lun, seems not ever published.

 The ancient book Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) was an academic work on thesis and discussion of Yin Syndromes. According to the preface by herbalist Wang Haogu himself, it was compiled and finished in the year 1232 A.D., a reference to “the cold-induced disease is a big class of disease from ancient till now, the Yin syndrome, hurt people especially urgent.”, “the Yang syndrome is easier to differentiate and easier for treatment, the Yin syndrome is difficult to differentiate and difficult to treat.”, the author quoted and extracted discussions and treatise about Yin Syndromes from the previous herbalists, with a combination of his viewpoints, gave detailed and exhaustive interpretations from different aspects including the pathogenic factors, pathogenesis, diagnosis, and treatment, etc., intending to clearly explain and interpret the risks and harms of the Yin Syndrome and the importance of Warm and Yang. From ancient literature records, this work was ever collected in a later book titled Ji Sheng Ba Cui(the Essence For Life Saving) by herbalist 杜思敬(Dù Sījìng) at the earliest date(the work Ji Sheng Ba Cui was published at the year 1308 A.D.). And it was also recorded in later works such as Yi Shu Wu Shi Si Zhong(the Fifty Four Kinds of Medical Books) by herbalist 陳修園(Chén Xiūyuán) and Zhong Guo Yi Xue Da Cheng(the Great Achievement of Chinese Medicine).

 The ancient book Tang Ye Ben Cao(the herbal classics of Tang Ye) first draft was compiled in the year 1298 A.D., and its final draft was finished in the year 1308 A.D. Main content with an interpretation of herbs and treatment method, points and preparation method of herbs, etc., it gives further interpretations and developments of the theory from herbalist Zhang Yuansu and Li Dongyuan, and it reflects the academic achievement of TCM theory and herbal works at the epoch. The name "Tang Ye" means decoction, as most herbal recipes were prepared and applied in the form of water decoction, thus the book was named "Tang Ye Ben Cao". It collects herbal introductions and applications from Zhang Zhongjing, Cheng Wuji, Zhang Yuansu, Li Dongyuan, and experience with herb applications of Wang Haogu himself, total 3 volumes, the 1st volume collected works Yao Lei Fa Xiang and Yong Yao Xin Fa from herbalist Li Dongyuan, and basic herbal and prescription theory under title Tang Ye Ben Cao from Wang Haogu himself, according to the 1st preface of the book by the author himself, the prescription theory of Tang Ye Ben Cao was originally based on theories from Wang Haogu's teacher Zhang Yuansu and his book Zhen Zhu Nang, supplemented with his innovative thesis and creations, the 2nd and 3rd volume recorded representative herbs 241 kinds and in 9 categories, gave an in-depth study and record on the topics include nature of herbs, channel tropism, specific opinions on the use of five taste herbs to invigorate deficiency and discharge excess, diet supplement.

 The ancient book Yi Lei Yuan Rong(Fighting Diseases in Medical Field) was compiled since the year 1291 A.D. and was finished in the year 1291 A.D., due to the exogenous febrile disease and miscellaneous diseases were divided into 2 departments after herbalist Zhang Zhongjing, medical crafts gradually became stupid, more professional and rougher, herbalist Wang Haogu inherited those wills of herbalist Zhang Zhongjing, combined methods from the Yi Shui School and herbalist Li Dongyuan, reinvented key points for the treatment of exogenous febrile disease and miscellaneous diseases, and hope learners could achieve the mastery through a comprehensive study of the subject. Its content is mainly composed of cold-induced disease and miscellaneous disease, based on theory and prescriptions of herbalist Zhang Zhongjing, also classified many miscellaneous diseases to diseases of the six meridians, with his efforts, diseases and syndromes due to endogenous injuries and exogenous affections both could be differentiated and treated according to the six meridians, supplemented with theory and methods from famous ancient herbalists including his teacher Zhang Yuansu and Li Dongyuan, and effective prescriptions from Wang Haogu himself. It also gave flexible applications of prescriptions of herbalist Zhang Zhongjing and enlarged the application scope of those prescriptions. This book could be understood as one of his representative book on the interpretation and development of theory from Zhang Zhongjing.

 The ancient book Ci Shi Nan Zhi(the questions difficult to understand) was published in the year 1308 A.D., and edited from the medical theory of his teacher Li Dongyuan, in 2 volumes and covered 106 articles, including the content of Zang-fu viscera, channel and meridians, Qi and blood, Ying-Qi and Wei-Qi, diagnostic methods, etiology and pathogenesis, treatment method, the relations and interaction between the sky and human, etc. For its contents are mainly discussions about theories of herbalist Li, the authorship was attributed to herbalist Li Dongyuan in the past, actually it is a book compiled and edited by herbalist Wang Haogu, and also reserved some lost content about the cold-induced disease from herbalist Li Dongyuan.

 The ancient book Ban Lun Cui Ying(the collected essential thesis on ecchymosis) was compiled and finished at the year 1237 A.D., its content is simple and brief in meaning, gave specific discussion and viewpoints on the subject treatment of baby's ecchymosis and differentiation with herpes, collected thesis and discussions on ecchymosis from previous herbalist Qian Yi, Zhang Yuansu and Li Dongyuan, and related article from Wang Haogu himself, the prescriptions were issued properly and fit for practice.

 Disciples: according to the preface of Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) by herbalist 麻信之(Má Xìnzhī), herbalist 王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ) ever took five disciples, and they are ancient herbalists 皇甫黻(Huángfǔ Fú), 張沌(Zhāng Dùn), 宋廷圭(Sòng Tíngguī), 張可(Zhāng Kě), and 弋彀英(Yi Gòuyīng).

 王好古Wáng Hǎogǔ✧Main theories and theoretical innovations from herbalist Wang Haogu:

 Theory of Endogenous Yin Syndrome: ever since the ancient herbal classical work Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases) by herbalist Zhang Zhongjing published, later generation herbalists all respected it as an ancient classics of in-depth study. But most scholars of it normally only left detailed studies and related works with the Three Yang Syndromes but short of related studies with the Three Yin Syndromes, which means the descriptions of Yin-Syndromes in Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases) were not got reasonably attention. And in peace epochs cases were described in those scenes “fat people take greasy food, and normally used a recipe with a strong potency, works well enough.”, which led a lot herbalist almost all did not tell conditions of Three Yin in their cases, herbalist Wang Haogu felt in depth that "the exogenous febrile disease, is a big disease of folks, its symptoms are very urgent, and the affection of Yin Syndrome has a very bad result. The Yang-Syndromes are easy to identify and easy to treat, yet the Yin-syndromes are hard to differentiate and hard to cure.", he buried himself in this subject for several years, studied relevant discussions from previous herbalists, and proved them in practice, changed related drafts triple times in ten years, compiled and finished the academic works Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes), established his own theory on those recipes and treatise of warm the interior and supporting Yang from herbalist Zhang Zhongjing, discussions and treatise about Yin-Syndrome and Yin-channels from other previous herbalists, gave detailed analysis and interpretation on the etiology and pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment of Yin Syndrome, well-intentioned. The theory of Endogenous Yin Syndrome by herbalist Wang Haogu, was based on his knowledge of the internal or endogenous injury of three Yin, his teacher herbalist Zhang Yuansu treated internal diet injury, ever set up three methods(resolving method, emetic method, purgative method) according to the pulse manifestations at wrist pulse with differentiation among diseases of the Three Yin channels.

 Theory of Insidious Yin Hidden deeply in the Interior, and the Identification of Yin Syndrome: Herbalist Wang Haogu also established the Theory of Insidious Yin Hidden deeply in the Interior, discussed in details the pathogenic reasons of the Endogenous Yin Syndrome and concluded that it related to both exogenous and endogenous pathogens. He also established the Identification methods of Yin Syndrome, the symptoms of the Yin Syndrome represented in complicated forms, varied(deteriorated syndromes) and present with pseudomorph or false appearance. Wang Haogu searched widely and collected various schools of thoughts for reference, summarized and induced twelve common symptoms as a reference for identifying and differentiate the Yin Syndrome and Yang Syndrome in practice.

 ✧Experience of Yin Syndrome Treatment:
 ⑴.Exogenous Cold and Dampness affection: for the cold dampness of fog and dew pathogenic factors affect folks, although it could cause the exterior syndrome, for its treatment, principles and prescriptions reflect the experience of herbalist Wang Haogu in rules and principle of ADFS(ascending, descending, floating and sinking) which inherited from his teachers.
 ⑵.Characteristics of Prescriptions: for the treatment of Yin Syndrome, herbalist Wang Haogu clearly proposed that: “double relieve, honey tea, bath, all should not be used for Yin syndromes”, and he also holds different viewpoints for ancient classical treatment from herbalist Zhang Zhongjing in the book Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases), in the 29th articles and the specific entry where Tiao Wei Cheng Qi Tang was advised. His academic work Yin Zheng Lue Li(the Sketchy Cases of Yin Syndromes) recorded 58 prescriptions.

 王好古Wáng Hǎogǔ ✧Other academic thoughts of herbalist Wang Haogu:

 About the exogenous febrile disease, herbalist Wang Haogu attached importance to the internal or endogenous pathogenic reasons. Exogenous cold pathogens, endogenous hurt of diet, and a cold or empty stomach, all may lead to the endogenous Yin Syndrome. This theoretical viewpoint of herbalist Wang Haogu, is consistent and completely the same as that described in the ancient book Huang Di Nei Jing(the Inner Canon) that: “where pathogens come together, its Qi will be deficient”, “The healthy Qi exists in the interior, the pathogenic factors could not affect". Besides, herbalist Wang Haogu also proposed the pathogenesis of the Three Yin Syndrome and explained it has a very close relationship with the Insidious Yin Hidden deeply in the Interior. Wang Haogu also inherited the related theory from herbalist Li Dongyuan and in one continuous line.

 According to his personal experience, herbalist Wang Haogu hold viewpoints that the treatment of the endogenous injury Three Yin syndromes, and advocated different prescriptions for various Yin syndromes, including ①.Jue Yin case deficiency Yang due to flourishing of Yin; ②.the Shao Yin case deficiency yang due to flourishing of yin; ③.the Tai Yin case deficiency yang due to flourishing of yin. Herbalist Wang Haogu attached great importance to the exogenous febrile disease three Yin syndromes, he proposed that “the Yang syndromes are easier to differentiate and easy to treat, the Yin syndromes are difficult to differentiate and difficult to treat”, and did make-up a series of additional research findings of the shortcomings on the related subject of Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases) study from previous generations, a specific application of the warm tonic theory he inherited from herbalist Li Dongyuan and its flexible application in the study of Shang Han Lun(the Treatise on Cold-induced Diseases), has his unique features and perfections.

 In practice and prescriptions, herbalist Wang Haogu hold opinions to use herbs with warm nature and should invigorate the spleen and stomach. He created new prescriptions to treat various Yin syndromes: ①. Yin toxin and Exogenous febrile disease, mind and spirit dysphoria, headache, counter flow cold of the limbs; ②. Excessive Yin refusing Yang(Predominant Yin rejecting Yang), dysphoria and not drink; ③. Yin toxin and exogenous febrile disease, cyanotic looks(cyanotic facial complexion), counter flow cold of the limbs(counter flow cold of arms, hands, legs, and feet), flatulence of heart and intestine, pulse deep and thready; ④. Yin toxin and exogenous febrile disease, cyanotic looks(cyanotic facial complexion), breath out and Qi flows out, hard glomus below the heart, body not hot, sweating only on the forehead, anxiety without stopping, black tongue and drowsiness(more sleep), cold limbs; ⑤. Exogenous febrile disease with evil symptoms; ⑥. Yin toxin and exogenous febrile disease, mind heart fidget and irritation, counter flow cold of the limbs; ⑦. Exogenous febrile disease, abdominal flatulence, counter flow cold of the limbs, fall down in a faint and could not recognize others, develops to Yin toxin serious syndrome.

 With his wisdom and genius, wide knowledge and hard study, herbalist Wang Haogu followed theory which comes from the syndrome differentiation of Zang-Fu viscera by herbalist Zhang Yuansu and the theory of the spleen stomach by herbalist Li Dongyuan, with a combination of his own experience, frequently and widely quoted discussions of different schools, with his creative findings, separately interpreted and described the syndrome differentiation of the Yin Syndromes, edited those discussion and treatise articles which scattered in various previous works in abrupt orders, systemized them into a specific theory with his specific orders of syndrome differentiation and treatment, this gave a big contribution to the development of TCM theory in that chaotic war epoch, and also initiated a big enlightenment to the study of Yin Syndromes for later generations.

 In the discussion of the Yin Syndrome, herbalist Wang Haogu thought highly of the internal or endogenous reason, was not limited by traditional cold disease exogenous pathogenic origin theory, he proposed the theory of Endogenous Yin Syndrome, gave a detailed interpretation of the Yin Syndrome theory based on Tai Yin internal injury of deficiency cold, which brought the differentiation and treatment of the Yin syndrome from the cold-induced exogenous Yin syndrome, to a new stage which the endogenous injury miscellaneous Yin syndromes were identified, greatly enlarged the scope of Yin Syndromes, and combined the theory of cold-induced disease and the theory of spleen stomach internal injury. The theory of Yin Syndromes not only developed the theory of herbalist Zhang Zhongjing but also was supplemented with those aspects and fields which not recorded in the heat syndrome of middle from the spleen-stomach internal injury theory of herbalist Li Dongyuan. His viewpoints on the warm tonic and replenish spleen stomach had an in-depth influence on the warm-recuperation school of the Ming Dynasty and later.

 Wang Haogu is really a genius with his specific creativity in the field, and enlightened great number of later generation herbalists, due to the seriousness and actual treatment-resistant of the Yin Syndromes, in practice his efforts and great achievements saved countless folks, should be respected as a Great Herbalist and a Master of medicine.

References:
  • 1.王好古(Wáng Hǎogǔ):introduction about his biography and legend,main books and academic thoughts.

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