The Cloud Dream of the Nine (九雲夢, 구운몽) was the first Korean novel to be translated into English in 1922. It is uncertain whether the work was originally written in Hangul or Classical Chinese.
Third Person Pronouns
Third person pronouns (三人稱代名詞, 3인칭대명사) are those that refer to someone or something else besides the speaker and the audience. Examples in English include, “he,” “him,” “she,” “her,” “it,” et cetera. Unlike English but like Korean, third person pronouns in Classical Chinese lack gender and describe what is being referred to in relation to some external spatial frame of reference. (In linguistics jargon, this frame of reference is called spatial deixis.) These are called demonstratives (指示代名詞, 지시대명사). Examples of English demonstrative include “this” and “these,” which refer to someone or something close to the frame of reference, and “that” and “those,” which refer to someone or something more distant. Similar to English and Korean, most demonstratives in Classical Chinese can be used as either determiners (冠形詞, 관형사) modifying the word coming after it or as standalone pronouns (代名詞, 대명사). One of the challenges in interpreting demonstratives is in determining whether the character is being used as a determiner or a standalone third person pronoun. Based on their frame of reference, Classical Chinese demonstratives can be classified into four categories: (1) proximal (近稱, 근칭), (2) medial (中稱, 중칭), (3) distal (遠稱, 원칭), and (4) generic (總稱, 총칭).
Proximal demonstrative are those words that refer to something close to the frame of reference. In English, these correspond to “this” or “these.” In Korean, the proximal demonstrative is 이. In Classical Chinese, the characters used are: 是(시), 此(차), 斯(사), 玆(자), 這(저), and 焉(언), which is an abbreviation of 於(어)+此(차). Note that 玆 is not often used as a demonstrative as the other characters listed and 這 is seen only in much later Classical Chinese texts.
This certainly is a person whose talents are sound but whose virtues is not shown.
► Zhaungzi (莊子, 장자), Inner Chapters (內篇, 내편), Seal of Virtue Complete (德充符, 덕충부).
To end but to begin again, the sun and moon are [like] this.
► Sun Tzu’s Art of War (孫子兵法, 손자병법), Strength (勢, 세).
Upon this day, [we] release our sighs and loudly wail.
► Imperial Capital Gazette (皇城新聞, 황성신문), Nov. 11, 1905 Edition by Jang Jiyeon (張志淵, 장지연, 1864-1921).
有道伐無道, 此天理也, 所從來久矣.
유도벌무도, 차천리야, 소종래구의.
[What] has the Way strikes [what] does not have the Way. This is heaven’s principle. Where it originated came from long ago.
► Luxuriant Dew of the Spring and Autumn Annals (春秋繁露, 춘추번로) by Dong Zhongshu (董仲舒, 동중서, 176-104BC).
If these enemies are removed, then if [we] die there will be no regret.
► Complete Works of Admiral Yi Sunshin (李忠武公全書, 이충무공전서).
These following [articles] establish a treaty of commerce and amity.
► Treaty of Amity and Commerce between the United States of America and Korea of 1882 (朝美修好通商條約, 조미수호통상조약).
Those [things] that depart are like this: [they] do not cease day and night.
► Analects (論語, 논어), Zi Han (子罕, 자한).
When an elder fakes being happy or being angry, this shames the small child.
► A Book on the Ear, Eye, Mouth, and Heart (耳目口心書, 이목구심서) by Yi Deokmu (李德懋, 이덕무, 1741-1793).
Ascending this pagoda to gaze at four [directions], somehow on [this] leisurely day [my] worries have disappeared.
► A Lyric on Ascending the Pagoda (登樓賦, 등루부) by Wan Can (王粲, 왕찬, 177-217).
King Wen (周文王, 주문왕, 1152-1056 BC) has already passed away, but does culture not reside in this [place]?
► Analects (論語, 논어), Zi Han (子罕, 자한).
This is an ostrich’s egg. [It] can cure strange diseases that are difficult to name.
► Jehol Journal (熱河日記, 열하일기) by Pak Jiwon (朴趾源, 박지원, 1737-1805).
This controversy is extremely lucid; [it] is not very easy.
► Records of the Teachers and Friends of the Eastern Confucians (東儒師友錄, 동유수우록) by Pak Sechae (朴世采, 박세채, 1631-1695).
然, 昔者吾舅死於虎, 吾夫又死焉.
연, 석자오구사어호, 오부우사언.
Yes, a long time ago my father-in-law was killed by a tiger. My husband again was killed by this (於+此) [tiger].
► Record of Rites (禮記, 예기), Tan Gong Part II (檀弓下, 단궁하).
Medial demonstratives are those words that refer to something not too close but not too far from the frame of reference. There are no equivalents in English, although they can be thought of as “that” and “those.” Oftentimes, it might be suitable to translate these demonstratives as “he,” “she,” or “it.” In Korean, medial demonstrative is 그. The characters used are: 其(기) and 厥(궐).
Man’s nature is evil. Those who [claim that it is] good are lying.
► Xun Zi (荀子, 순자, 312-230 BC), Nature is Evil (性惡, 성악).
北冥有魚, 其名爲鯤. 鯤之大, 不知其幾千里也.
북명유어, 기명위곤. 곤지대, 불지기기천리야.
In the Northern Oceans, there is a fish. Its name is Kun (鯤, 곤). [As for] Kun’s size, [I] do not know its [size] in how many thousand li (里,리).
► Zhuangzi (莊子, 장자), Inner Chapters (內篇, 내편), Enjoyment in Untroubled Ease (逍遙遊, 소요유).
Now, there are rice grains in the middle of this bottle of ten dou (斗, 두) (180 liters). [I] do not know its number.
►The Nine Chapters on the Mathematical Art (九章算術, 구장산술), To Fill Not Sufficiently (盈不足, 영부족).
For those who have newly constructed stores, exempt their shopping stores for five years.
► The Following Records of Ban’gye (磻溪隨錄, 반계수록), On Currency (錢幣, 전폐) by Yu Hyeongweon (柳馨遠, 유형원, 1622-1673).
寡君聞楚爲不道, 荐伐吳國, 滅厥民人.
과군문초위불도, 천벌오국, 멸궐민인.
Our lord heard that the Chu (楚, 초) did not pursue the Way (道, 도), and recommended [that we] strike the Wu State (吳, 오) and exterminate their people.
► Zhou’s Commentary on the Spring and Autumn Period (春秋左傳, 춘추좌전), Duke Ai (哀公, 애공), Fifteenth Year of Duke Ai’s Reign (哀公十五年, 애공십오년).
The farmers die of starvation. They lay on their seeds.
► A Collection of Heard Words (耳談續纂, 이담속찬) by Jeong Yakyong (丁若鏞, 정약용, 1762-1836).
If the medicine makes [him] not dizzy and somber, then his illness has not been cured.
► Classic of History (書經, 서경), Charge to Yue Part I (說命上, 열명상).
Distal demonstratives are those words that refer to something far from the frame of reference. In English, these correspond to “that” or “those.” To elucidate the distinction between medial and distal, it might be better to conceptualize the latter as “that over there” or “those over there.” Similar to medial demonstratives, they can be often translated as “he,” “she,” or “it” in English. In Korean, the distal demonstrative is 저. In Classical Chinese, the characters used are: 彼(피) and 夫(부). Note that there are at times where 夫 need not be translated.
Having traded something small for something large, how will those [people] know it?
► Mencius (孟子, 맹자), Liang Hui Wang Part I (梁惠王上, 양혜왕상).
What kind of Gisaeng (妓生, 기생) is Gang Namhong (江南紅, 강남홍) for [her] intentions and discerning eye to be similar to that [person's] elegance?
►Dreams in the Jade Tower (玉樓夢, 옥루몽) by Nam Yeongro (南永魯, 남영로, ?-?).
[I] have ascended that mountain in the west, and have plucked its ferns.
► Records of the Grand Historian (史記, 사기), Biography of Bo Yi (伯夷列傳, 백이열전).
That old man transformed into a white crane and flew away.
► Precious Mirror of Eastern Medicine (東醫寶鑑, 동의보감), Inner Scene Chapter (內景篇, 내경편) by Heo Jun (許浚, 허준, 1539-1615).
Those three people’s words, what were [they]?
► Analects (論語, 논어), Xian Jin (先進, 선진).
I was wrong. That man was right.
► Record of Rites (禮記, 예기), Tan Gong Part I (檀弓上, 단궁상).
Little child, why did you not study poetry?
► Analects (論語, 논어), Yang Huo (陽貨, 양화).
Generic third person pronouns are those without any frame of reference. That is, they can refer to anyone or anything proximal, medial, or distal. These are similar to English third person pronouns and thus can be translated to “he,” “she,” or “it.” Likewise, in Korean, these can be any of 이, 그, and 저. In Classical Chinese, the characters used are: 他(타), 渠(거), 伊(이), 之(지), and 諸(제), which is an abbreviation for 之(지)+於(어). Note that: 他 is more often used to mean “other” or “another”; 渠 is used as a pronoun beginning in later Classical Chinese texts; and 之 is only used as a standalone pronoun and only functions as an object referring to something or someone described previously.
If [you] quickly return his horse, [I] will forgive your transgressions.
► Book of the Later Han (後漢書, 후한서), Biographies of Alchemists (方術列傳, 방술열전).
The daughter’s husband came yesterday. It must be he who stole.
► Records of the Three Kingdoms (三國志, 삼국지), Book of Wu (吳書, 오서), Biography of Zhao Da (趙達傳, 조달전).
He already needed to become clean and pure (Taoist term) and quietly destroy [himself] (Buddhist term). How was [he] not to sit in Zen meditation?
► Arranged Words of Master Zhu (朱子語類, 주자어류), On Sakyumi (釋氏, 석씨).
It rained once for three days. Whose power is it?
► Record of the Happy Rain Pavilion (喜雨亭記, 희우정기) by Su Shi (蘇軾, 소식, 1037-1101).
Do not learn from your older brother: your older brother by himself was no more like him!
► A New Account of the Tales of the World (世說新語, 세설신어), Evaluation (品藻, 품조) by Liu Yiqing (劉義慶, 유의경, 430-444).
But the four [beginnings] (四端, 사단) are emitted [from] the principle force (理, 리) and the material force (氣, 기) follows it.
► Reply to Ki Myeong’eon (答奇明彦, 답기명언) by Yi Hwang (李滉, 이황, 1502-1571).
I, Shen (參, 삼), am not nimble. How am [I] sufficient to know it?
► Classic of Filial Piety (孝經, 효경), The Scope and Meaning of the Treatise (開宗明義, 개종명의).
我皆令入, 無餘涅槃, 而滅度之.
아개령입, 무여열반, 이멸도지.
We all will make [them] enter, without remainder, into nirvana, and will liberate them.
► Diamond Sutra (金剛般若波羅蜜經, 금강반야바라밀경).
祝訖, 遂擲之, 生果勝.
축흘, 수척지, 생과승.
[He] prayed exerting [himself], finally chucked them, and became in the end victorious.
► The New Tale of the Golden Terrapin (金鰲新話, 금오신화) by Kim Shiseup (金時習, 김시습, 1435-1493).
Cui Ming (崔明, 최명, Choe Myeong, ?-?) at night buried him in (之+於) the large tomb.
► Commentaries of Zhou on the Spring and Autumn Period (春秋左傳, 춘추좌전), Duke of Xiang of Lu (襄公, 양공).