Chinese Calligraphy and Inscription Collection

Full-image full-text searchable database of Chinese characters and inscriptions

Encapsulating the quintessential elements of Chinese culture, calligraphy can be regarded as the core of Chinese art. To discuss Chinese art without knowledge of calligraphy is nearly impossible. The Chinese Calligraphy and Inscription Collection (歷代書法碑帖集成) offers scholars outstanding examples of Chinese calligraphic inscriptions, with 4,268 significant, classical works presenting approximately 1.7 million characters and variants. Covering the period of the Xia to Qing Dynasty (c. 2070 BC-1911), the collection integrates single-character photos and full-work images with full-text searching, and features the ability to search the Taiwanese Ministry of Education’s landmark reference publication, the Dictionary of Chinese Character Variants.

Calligraphy and Inscription

Key Stats

  • Language: Traditional Chinese content with English, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese interfaces
  • Number of Works: 4,268
  • Format: Full image and full text
  • Producer: United Digital Publications
  • Platform: UDP Taiwan Academic Classics

About the Collection

The Chinese Calligraphy and Inscription Collection is a full-image, full-text searchable database of 4,268 renowned works of Chinese calligraphic inscriptions. Produced by United Digital Publications of Taiwan, formerly known as Greatman Knowledge Management Group, the collection is offered on the Taiwan Academic Classics (TAC) platform and is cross-searchable with other content on TAC.

The Chinese Calligraphy and Inscription Collection is divided into two sections (“databases”), each supporting philological/textual research from different perspectives:

Single Character Database
Includes original images of calligraphic variants found among all 4,268 referenced source texts. Features various forms of characters from numerous renowned Chinese calligraphers’ works, including regular script, running script, cursive, clerical script, seal characters, ancient writings, and more.

Complete Works Database
Compiles the work of 700 calligraphers and 1.7 million characters in various forms. Users can find works of specific authors/calligraphers from various dynasties and compare larger texts and styles, aided by the database’s search features.

The Chinese Calligraphy and Inscription Collection presents each individual character as machine-searchable text, with accompanying graphic facsimiles from original calligraphic works. A special feature of the collection is the ability to search the Taiwanese Ministry of Education’s landmark reference publication, the Dictionary of Chinese Character Variants.

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