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Pan Zhang
(? - ? BC) Zhou China

Pan Zhang



A remarkable story from the state of Chu glorifies the love of Wang Zhongxian for a handsome and learned subject named Pan Zhang, surely the most positive and romantic account that survives from the Zhou period (1122 to 256 BC).

When Pan Zhang was young he had a beautiful appearance and bearing, and so people of that time were exceedingly fond of him.

Wang Zhongxian of the state of Chu [Zhou] heard of his reputation and came to request his writings. Thereafter Wang Zhongxian wanted to study together with him. They fell in love at first sight and were as affectionate as husband and wife, sharing the same coverlet and pillow with unbounded intimacy for one another.

Afterwards they died together and everyone mourned them. When they were buried together at Lofu Mountain, on the peak a tree with long branches and leafy twigs suddenly grew. All of these embraced one another! At the time people considered this a miracle. It was called the "Shared Pillow Tree."


Source: from the Legalist philosophical work, the Han Fei Zi - from Brett Hinsch, Passions of the Cut Sleeve: The Male Homosexual Tradition in China, (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press,1990), pp. 24-25

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