4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 8 May 2005
This Dover Paperback edition was the first copy of the I-Ching that I bought for myself, sometime in the early 1970s.
I've read, borrowed, and owned several other translations over the years and all have contributed to my love of the texts and the insights they can trigger, but James Legge is still the one I return to most often.
I-Ching is one of the most varied books you will find, with many different approaches to translation and many different sets of commentaries. Legge is less fanciful than many but is grounded in solid scholarship.
If you're buying just one I Ching then this is a good one to consider, and don't forget that many local libraries will be able to lend you copies of this and other translations if you're not yet sure what you're looking for.
on 14 February 2011
"What is the price of experience?
Do men buy it for a song?
Or wisdom for a dance in the street?"
- William Blake
Around the time that King's David and Solomon composed the Psalms, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes of the Bible, in China, King Wen and the Duke of Chou put what they believed to be wisdom into the structure of the lineal figures that make up the basis of the I Ching. The James Legge translation here, originally published as part of the Sacred Books of the East series, is one of the earliest translations of the Book of Changes into English that we have. Whilst not having the poetic prose of the Wilhelm/Baynes version it is non the less a complete and usable translation with its own particular merits and drawbacks. For myself this is the first version that I came across over 30 years ago and so its prose still resonates for me. There are many other possibly superior versions available nowadays, leaving this version by Legge as something of an historical document, but the I Ching is best studied by use and as some learned Alchemist said, "one book opens another".