Analects 14.13

Original Text:

子问公叔文子于公明贾曰信乎夫子不言不笑不取乎公明贾对曰以告者过也夫子时然后言人不厌其言乐然后笑人不厌其笑义然后取人不厌其取子曰其然岂其然乎

Translation:

Other Translations:

The Master asked Gongming Jia about Gongshu Wenzi, saying, “Is it really true that your master did not speak, did not laugh, and did not take?”

Gongming Jia answered, “Whoever told you that was exaggerating. My master only spoke when the time was right, and so people never grew impatient listening to him. He only laughed when he was genuinely full of joy, and so people never tired of hearing him laugh. He only took what was rightfully his, and so people never resented his taking of things.”

The Master said, “Was he really that good? Could he really have been that good?”

Confucius, & Slingerland, E. (2003). Analects: With selections from traditional commentaries. Hackett Publishing.

The Master questioned Gongming Jia about Gongshu Wenzi, saying, Is it true that your master never spoke, never laughed, and never accepted things?

Gongming Jia replied, Whoever told you that was exaggerating. My master spoke only when it was time to do so—thus others did not object to his speaking. He laughed only when he was happy—so others did not object to his laughter. He accepted things only when it was right to do so—thus others did not object to his accepting.

The Master said, Is that so? Could that really be so?

Confucius, & Watson, B. (2007). The Analects of Confucius. Columbia University Press.

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