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Chinese classic texts, or Chinese canonical texts, (Chinese: 典籍; pinyin: diǎnjí) today often refer to the pre-Qin Chinese texts, especially the Neo-Confucian titles of Four Books and Five Classics (四書五經), a selection of short books and chapters from the voluminous collection called the Thirteen Classics. All of these pre-Qin texts were written in classical Chinese. As canons they are collectively referred to as jing (經).
More broadly speaking, Chinese classic texts may refer to texts, be they written in vernacular Chinese or in classical Chinese, that existed before 1912, when the last imperial Chinese dynasty, the Qing Dynasty, fell. These can include shi (史, historical works), zi (子, philosophical works belonging to schools of thought other than the Confucian, but also works of agriculture, medicine, mathematics, astronomy, divination, art criticism, and all sorts of miscellaneous writings) and ji (集, literary works) as well as jing.
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