New Book of Tang - Classic Work of History about the Tang Dynasty
The New Book of Tang (新唐书), is a classic work of history about the Tang Dynasty edited by Ouyang Xiu and Song Qi (宋祁) and other official scholars of the Song Dynasty. The emperor called for a revision of the former Book of Tang in 1044. The New Book was presented to the throne in 1060. It was given its name "Xin" ("new") to distinguish it from its predecessor. It has been canonised as among the Twenty-Four Histories.
Ouyang Xiu frequently invokes the principle of reason in evaluating historical accounts, and purges all accounts containing elements of myth or superstition.
Ouyang Xiu and Song Qi both disliked the Tang Dynasty's style of flowery prose. They changed the original wordings in the documents that they quoted in the book. However, some of the changes they made did more harm than good as they made some of the sentences difficult to understand.
Four biographies of women appear in this new book that were not present in the first Book of Tang. The women kill or maim themselves in horrible ways, and represent examples of Tang Dynasty women that were intended to deter contemporary readers from extreme behavior. For example, Woman Lu gouges her own eye out to assure her ailing husband that there will be no second man after him. Biographies of 35 overly filial and fraternal men are also included in the work, though these men do not resort to the extremes of female mutilation found in the female biographies.