A GLIMPSE OF THE EAGLE CLAW CONTINUOUS BOXING SET

鷹爪連拳
EAGLE CLAW FIFTY-LINE CONTINUOUS BOXING [Lines 1–5]
授技陳子正
instructions by Chen Zizheng
筆述黃維慶
recorded by Huang Weiqing
製圖考證 李明德 李佩弦
proofread by Li Mingde & Li Peixian
[published in Malaysia within 雪蘭莪精武特刊 Selangor Jingwu Magazine, issue #1, Dec 1, 1928]

[translation by Paul Brennan, Oct, 2020]

弁言
PREFACE

連拳凡五十路。為鷹爪門之基本敎練。手法雖簡。寓意極深。為用亦廣。非一語可能道破。拳術為一種有統系科學。細針密縫。非粗心人所能學。尤非淺嘗輒止者所能窺其奧妙。此書之作。聊以資考證。備遺忘。惟在學者按圖索驥。極深研幾。所謂神而明之。全乎其人也。
Fifty-Line Continuous Boxing is a fundamental training in the Eagle Claw art. Although the techniques are simple, the concepts within are profound. Its uses are so broad that it cannot be summed up in just a few words. A boxing art is a kind of scientific system, minutely detailed [“thin needles sewing fine threads”], and thus careless people will not be able to learn it, and in particular people who only sporadically play with it will have no hope of peering into its subtleties. The purpose of this book is for students to have reference material in order to verify that one is practicing correctly, and also to keep one from forgetting what has been learned. However, it is up to the student to actually make use of the material and to delve deeply into it, as it is said [in the commentary section to the Book of Changes]: “Understanding depends on oneself.”

凡例
INTRODUCTORY COMMENTS

(一)方向分前後左右。使閱者易於明瞭。
– The orientations are divided simply into forward and back, left and right, in order for the reader to more easily understand.

(一)每動作一口令。由一至幾。依動作之繁簡而定。故不列口令。
– Each movement name is a command, regardless of the numbering, or of the complexity or simplicity of a specific movement, and therefore no additional commands have been listed beyond the names of the movements.

(一)每路分三節。手法完全相同。惟第二節左右互易。故每路祗言一節。可槪其餘。接連處。略加說明。是在學者舉一反三。
– Each line is divided into three sections. The movements are identical in the first and third section, but performed on the other side in the second section. Therefore only the first section for each line is described, for the rest can easily be intuited with only the slightest additional explanation needed.

(一)凡名稱槪從實用。使習者顧名思義。易於領會。
– All of the terminology within the text is practical rather than poetic, causing practitioners to grasp the idea as soon they see the words and thus more readily understand the instructions.

開式
OPENING SEQUENCE

開式為開始表演之姿勢。無論獨習與團體操。或表演任何一路。皆可用之。其動作凡五。
The opening sequence is the beginning of the performance, regardless of solo practice or group practice, and can be used at the beginning of any line. It is divided into five movements:

(一)立正
1. STANDING AT ATTENTION

此式上部之姿勢。與普通體操之立正式相同。惟兩足須靠攏。
The position of the upper body is the same as when standing at attention in ordinary calisthenics, but the feet have to be together. See photo 1:

(二)預備
2. READINESS

先將左右兩掌從大腿傍昇至腰部。然後組作仰拳。肘尖向後。餘不動。
Your palms rise up beside your thighs until at your waist, becoming upward-facing fists, your elbows pointing behind, the rest of your body not moving. See photo 2:

(三)順步覆衝拳
3. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

左足橫開一步。先作馬式。隨將左拳前衝。同時。右足撑直變作弓式。目前視。身體斜向右方。右拳不動。
Your left foot steps out sideways, first making a horse-riding stance, then your left fist thrusts forward as your right leg straightens, your torso slightly turning to the right, your right fist not moving. Your gaze is forward. See photo 3:

(四)抝步覆衝拳
4. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

步不動。左拳收囘腰部作仰拳。同時。以右拳衝出。目前視。身體斜向左方。
With your stance not changing, your left fist withdraws to your waist, the center of the fist facing upward, as your right fist thrusts out, your torso turning slightly to the left. Your gaze is forward. See photo 4:

(五)站式
5. FIGHTING STANCE

左足不動。右足上前靠攏。身體蹲下。右拳稍縮。將臂擰轉。使拳心向上。肘尖向下。左拳心向外。從腰部貼身而上。墊於右肘之下。沿右臂伸出至定點時。成曲肘立拳。同時。右拳縮置左脇。拳背向上。左足乘兩手伸縮之際。向前伸出。膝微曲。足尖斜向右方。右足曲立。任全身之重。腰宜直。胸對右。目視前方。
With your left foot staying where it is, your right foot comes forward to stand next to it, your body squatting down, as your right fist slightly pulls back, the forearm twisting so that the center of the fist is facing upward, the elbow pointing downward, your left fist going upward along your belly until placed under your right elbow, the center of the left fist facing outward. Then your left fist goes along your right arm, reaching out to its final position with the elbow bent and the fist vertical, your right fist pulling back to your left ribs, the back of the fist facing upward, as your left foot reaches out forward, the knee slightly bent, the toes pointing diagonally to the right, your right leg bent and supporting the weight of your whole body. Your torso should be upright, your chest facing to the right, and your gaze is forward. See photo 5:

第一路 壓打 圖六至十一左右共六動作
Line 1: PRESS DOWN & HIT (six movements: 6–11)

(六)順步壓
6. STRAIGHT STANCE, PRESSING DOWN

依站式姿勢。將左拳下沉。(沉時肘尖向前。)再翻上而用拳背壓下。其路線如斜圈形。右拳拉至右脅。拳背向上。同時。左膝前拱。右腿撑直。成左弓式。
From the fighting stance, your left fist sinks down, the elbow staying forward, the fist turning over so that the center of the fist is facing upward, pressing down with the back of the fist, the path of its motion drawing an arc, your right fist pulling back to your right ribs, the back of the fist facing upward, as your left leg goes forward, the knee bending, and your right leg presses straight, making a left bow stance. See photo 6:

(七)抝步覆衝拳
7. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

步不動。右拳從脅部衝出。拳背向上。高與肩平。左拳收囘。斜置胸膈間。衝拳有三種。拳背向上為覆衝拳。向下為仰衝拳。向外者為正衝拳。
With your stance not changing, your right fist thrusts out from your ribs, the back of the fist facing upward, finishing at shoulder height, as your left fist withdraws to be placed diagonally at your diaphragm. (There are three kinds of thrust punch: the back of the fist facing upward makes it a “covering thrust punch”; the center of the fist facing upward makes it an “upward-facing thrust punch”; the back of the fist facing outward makes it an “upright thrust punch”.) See photo 7:

(八)順步仰衝拳
8. STRAIGHT STANCE, UPWARD-FACING THRUST PUNCH

左拳沿右臂下仰衝而出。高與肩平。右拳拉囘脅部。拳背仍向上方。
Your left fist goes along the underside of your right arm and thrusts out with the center of the fist facing upward, finishing at shoulder height, as your right fist pulls back to your ribs with the back of the fist still facing upward. See photo 8:

(九)順步壓
9. STRAIGHT STANCE, PRESSING DOWN
(十)抝步覆衝拳
10. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH
(十一)順步仰衝拳
11. STRAIGHT STANCE, UPWARD-FACING THRUST PUNCH

左邊至此已完。右足踏進一步。卽練右邊。亦三動作。如九、十、十一、圖是也。
After finishing this series of three movements on the left side, your right foot steps forward and you perform the same movements on the right side. See photos 9–11:

右邊旣完。左足踏進一步。再練左邊。如是左右接下。多少隨意。倘欲演囘原位。無論練至左足或右足在前。可原地向後轉。以後手作前手。順步壓下。不必轉身再上步也。
After finishing the movements on the right side, your left foot steps forward and you again perform the movements on the left side. You can continue in this way, left side, right side, and so on, as many times as you please. If you want to return to your starting place, it does not matter if your left foot or right foot is forward, you can turn around wherever you are and turn your rear hand into your front hand, going right into performing STRAIGHT STANCE, PRESS DOWN instead of turning around to then advance into that posture.

第二路 挑打 圖十二至二三左右共十二動作
Line 2: CARRY & HIT (twelve movements: 12–23)

(十二)抝步爪挑
12. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

依站式姿勢。將右拳變爪。穿右臂。向上反挑至右顱傍。虎口向前。左拳收囘腰部作仰拳。同時。左膝拱進。右腿挺直。變為弓式。
From the fighting stance, your right fist becomes a claw and threads out upward from under your left arm, turning over and carrying across until beside the right side of your head, the tiger’s mouth facing forward, as your left fist withdraws to your waist, becoming an upward-facing fist, your left leg going forward, the knee bending, your right leg straightening, making a bow stance. See photo 12:

(十三)順步覆衝拳
13. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

左拳從腰部衝出。高與肩平。但須與上式之挑手同時達到定點。
Your left fist thrusts out from your waist, finishing at shoulder height, and has to finish at the same time that the carrying hand reaches its final position. See photo 13:

(十四)順步爪挑
14. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

將左拳反轉變爪。挑至左顱傍。虎口向前。右爪放下。變為仰拳。貼於腰部。
Your left fist becomes a claw and carries across until beside the left side of your head, the tiger’s mouth facing forward, as your right claw lowers to your waist, becoming an upward-facing fist. See photo 14:

(十五)抝步覆衝拳
15. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

右拳從腰部衝出。高與肩平。但須與上式之挑手同時達到定點。
Your right fist thrusts out from your waist, finishing at shoulder height, and has to finish at the same time that the carrying hand reaches its final position. See photo 15:

(十六)抝步爪挑
16. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

將右拳反轉變爪。挑至右顱傍。虎口向前。左爪放下。變為仰拳。貼於腰部。其定式如第十二圖。
Your right fist becomes a claw and carries across until beside the right side of your head, the tiger’s mouth facing forward, as your left claw lowers to your waist, becoming an upward-facing fist. The final position is the same as in photo 12:

(十七)順步覆衝拳
17. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

左拳從腰部衝出。高與肩平。但須與上式之挑手同時達到定點。其定式如第十三圖。
Your left fists thrusts out from your waist, finishing at shoulder height, and has to finish at the same time that the carrying hand reaches its final position. It is the same posture as in photo 13:

(十八)抝步爪挑
18. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW
(十九)順步覆衝拳
19. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH
(二十)順步爪挑
20. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING CLAW
(廿一)抝步覆衝拳
21. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH
(廿二)抝步爪挑
22. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW
(廿三)順步覆衝拳
23. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

左邊至此已完。如欲練右邊。則右足須踏進一步。同時將左拳變爪上挑。右爪放下。如十八圖是也。
After finishing the movements on the left side, your right foot steps forward for you to perform the same movements on the right side, your left fist becoming a claw and carrying upward as your right claw lowers to your waist, becoming an upward-facing fist. See photo 18:

以下十九、至二三圖卽十三至十七圖之反面。可勿重述。
Movements 19–23 are then the same as movements 13–17, except with left and right reversed. See photos 19–21, followed by repeats of photos 18 & 19:

第三路 弸拳 圖二四至二九左右共六動作
Line 3: SNAPPING FISTS (six movements: 24–29)

(廿四)順步弸拳
24. STRAIGHT STANCE, SNAPPING PUNCH

依站式姿勢。先將左肘腕內屈。移拳于左乳之前。然後用拳稜平橫擊出。虎口向上。拳稜向左。高與肩平。右拳拉至右脅。虎口向上。左膝同時前拱。右腿撑直。變為弓式。
From the fighting stance, your left forearm retracts, bringing the fist in front of the left side of your chest, then strikes across using the line of the knuckles, the tiger’s mouth facing upward, the back of the fist facing to the left, finishing at shoulder height, as your right fist pulls back to your right ribs, the tiger’s mouth facing upward, your left leg going forward, the knee bending, your right leg pressing straight, making a bow stance. See photo 24:

(廿五)抝步弸拳
25. CROSSED STANCE, SNAPPING PUNCH

步不動。右拳從脅移至左腋下。卽用拳稜沿左臂平橫擊出。左拳同時移于右腋之下。虎口向上。
With your stance not changing, your right fist shifts under your left armpit, slides along the outside of your left arm, and strikes across using the line of the knuckles, your left fist shifting below your right armpit, the tiger’s mouth facing upward. See photo 25:

(二六)側身綳拳
26. SIDEWAYS BODY, SNAPPING PUNCH

左拳從右腋下用拳稜沿右臂平橫擊出。右拳拉囘脅部。虎口向上。同時。原地身向右轉。由弓式變為馬式。
Your left fist slides along the outside of your right arm and strikes across using the line of the knuckles as your right fist withdraws to your ribs, the tiger’s mouth facing upward, your torso turning to the right, your feet staying where they are, your bow stance switching to a horse-riding stance. See photo 26:

(廿七)順步弸拳
27. STRAIGHT STANCE, SNAPPING PUNCH

右足踏進一步。成弓式。右拳從脅移至左腋下。卽沿左臂用拳稜平橫擊出。同時。移左拳於右腋之下。虎口向上。
Your right foot advances to make a bow stance as your right fist shifts under your left armpit, slides along the outside of your left arm, and strikes across using the line of the knuckles, your left fist shifting below your right armpit, the tiger’s mouth facing upward. See photo 27:

(廿八)抝步弸拳
28. CROSSED STANCE, SNAPPING PUNCH
(廿九)側身弸拳
29. SIDEWAYS BODY, SNAPPING PUNCH

二八、二九、貳圖卽二五、二六、兩圖之反面。可參看。
These two movements are the same as in movements 25 & 26, except with left and right reversed. See photos 28 & 29:

第四路 攉挑 圖三十至三七左右共八動作
Line 4: SCOOP & CARRY (eight movements: 30–37)

(三十)順步掌挑
30. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING PALM

依站式姿勢。將左拳變為覆掌。(指尖向右。)挑至額上。掌心翻向前方。右拳變為仰掌。貼於腹部。兩足同時就地變為弓式。
From the fighting stance, your left fist becomes a covering palm, the fingertips pointing to the right, and carries upward until above your forehead, the palm turning over to be facing forward, as your right fist becomes an upward-facing palm at your belly, your legs switching to a bow stance. See photo 30:

(三一)抝步掌挑
31. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING PALM

步不動。左掌從額上左抹。轉下至腹部。變為仰掌。右掌從腹部經左乳挑至額上。掌心翻向前方。(以上兩動作須一氣連貫。)
With your stance not changing, your left hand wipes away to the left and arcs downward to your belly, the palm facing upward, as your right hand goes up from your waist, passing the left side of your chest, and carries upward until above your forehead, the palm turning over to be facing forward. (This movement should follow from the previous one as a continuous flow.) See photo 31:

(三二)順步掌挑
32. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING PALM

右掌從額上右抹。轉下至腰部。變為仰拳。(演時此處不停。)左掌從腹部經右乳挑至額上。掌心翻向前方。
Continuing from the previous movement without pausing, your right hand wipes away to the right and arcs downward to your waist, becoming an upward-facing fist, as your left hand goes up from your waist, passing the right side of your chest, and carries upward until above your forehead, the palm turning over to be facing forward. See photo 32:

(三三)抝步覆衝拳
33. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

右拳從腰部衝出。拳背向上。虎口向左。(以上兩動作須同時達到定點)
Your right fist thrusts out from your waist, the back of the fist facing upward, the tiger’s mouth facing to the left, and has to finish at the same time that the carrying hand reaches its final position. See photo 33:

(三四)順步掌挑
34. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING PALM
(三五)抝步掌挑
35. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING PALM
(三六)順步掌挑
36. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING PALM
(三七)抝步覆衝拳
37. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

三四至三七圖之動作如前四圖。惟左右互易耳。
These four movements are the same as in movements 30–31, except with left and right reversed. See photos 34–37:

第五路 蓋馬三拳 圖三八至五七左右共二十動作
Line 5: COVERING THE HORSE, TRIPLE CHOPPING FISTS (twenty movements: 38–57)

(三八)抝步爪挑
38. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

同第十二圖。卽第二路之第一動作。
Repeat of movement 1 in Line 2 – photo 12:

(三九)順步覆衝拳
39. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

同第十三圖。卽第二路之第二動作。
Repeat of movement 2 in Line 2 – photo 13:

(四十)藏身護襠式
40. HIDING THE BODY, GUARDING THE CROTCH

右爪放下。變為仰拳。貼右腰際。同時兩足原地由前弓式轉為後弓式。左拳隨身轉而下格。垂於襠前。
Your right claw lowers to the right side of your waist, becoming an upward-facing fist, as your feet stay where they are and pivot from a forward bow stance to a backward bow stance, your left fist going along with the turning of your torso by blocking downward, hanging in front of your crotch. See photo 40:

(四一)順步劈拳
41. STRAIGHT STANCE, CHOPPING FIST

左拳從襠經右拳上撩。至臂近左耳。卽囘身劈下。臂宜直。虎口向上。步法隨之復變為前弓式。
Your left fist passes your crotch, continuing to the right and raising until the arm is near your left ear, then chops down as your torso turns, the arm straight, the tiger’s mouth facing upward, your legs switching back to a forward bow stance. See photo 41:

(四二)抝步劈拳
42. CROSSED STANCE, CHOPPING FIST

左拳沉下。虎口向左。直臂後撩。至與肩成水平線時。虎口轉向上方。右拳卽從腰部後撤。舉而劈下。身體彎轉向左。
Your left fist sinks down, the tiger’s mouth facing to the left, and raises behind you at shoulder level with the arm straight, the tiger’s mouth facing upward, as your right fist pulls back from your waist, rises up, and chops down, your torso rotating to the left. See photo 42:

(四三)側身劈拳
43. SIDEWAYS BODY, CHOPPING FIST

右拳收囘腰部。拳心向上。左拳從後直起。向前劈下。同時。變步法為騎馬式、(以上四式運動須如輪轉方合。)
Your right fist withdraws to your waist, the center of the fist facing upward, as your left fist rises up from behind and chops down forward, your stance switching to a horse-riding stance. (The action of movements 40–43 should be like a rotating wheel.) See photo 43:

(四四)順步爪挑
44. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

同第十四圖。卽第二路之第三動作。惟彼不動步。此則由馬式轉弓式。
Repeat of movement 3 in Line 2 – photo 14 (except in that case your stance does not change, whereas in this case you are switching from a horse-riding stance to a bow stance):

(四五)抝步覆衝拳
45. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

同第十五圖。卽第二路之第四動作。
Repeat of movement 4 in Line 2 – photo 15:

(四六)抝步爪挑
46. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

同第十六圖。卽第二路之第五動作。
Repeat of movement 5 in Line 2 – photo 12:

(四七)順步覆衝拳
47. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

同第十七圖。卽第二路之第六動作。以下是練右邊。
Repeat of movement 6 in Line 2 – photo 13 (after which you will perform this series of three movements on the right side):

(四八)抝步爪挑
48. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

同第十八圖。卽第二路之第七動作。
Repeat of movement 7 in Line 2 – photo 18:

(四九)順步覆衝拳
49. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

同第十九圖。卽第二路之第八動作。
Repeat of movement 8 in Line 2 – photo 19:

(五十)藏身護襠式
50. HIDING THE BODY, GUARDING THE CROTCH
(五一)順步劈拳
51. STRAIGHT STANCE, CHOPPING FIST
(五二)抝步劈拳
52. CROSSED STANCE, CHOPPING FIST
(五三)側身劈拳
53. SIDEWAYS BODY, CHOPPING FIST

圖五十至五三卽第四十至四三之反面。可參考。
These four movements are the same as in movements 40–43, except with left and right reversed. See photos 50–53:

(五四)順步爪挑
54. STRAIGHT STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

同第二十圖。卽第二路之第九動作。惟彼不動步。此則由騎馬式轉弓式。
Repeat of movement 9 in Line 2 – photo 20 (except in that case your stance does not change, whereas in this case you are switching from a horse-riding stance to a bow stance):

(五五)抝步覆衝拳
55. CROSSED STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

同第二一圖。卽第二路之第十動作。
Repeat of movement 10 in Line 2 – photo 21:

(五六)抝步爪挑
56. CROSSED STANCE, CARRYING CLAW

同第二二圖。卽第二路之第十一動作。
Repeat of movement 11 in Line 2 – photo 12:

(五七)順步覆衝拳
57. STRAIGHT STANCE, COVERING THRUST PUNCH

同第二三圖。卽第二路之第十二動作。
Repeat of movement 13 in Line 2 – photo 13:

– – –

[To provide further information about this set, included below is a chapter from 薛鞏初 Xue Gongchu’s 技擊準繩 Martial Arts Standards (1930).]

鷹爪連拳五拾路
ABOUT THE EAGLE CLAW FIFTY-LINE CONTINUOUS BOXING SET

鷹爪連拳。為高深拳術之一種。陳師子正。生平不苟授人。得意門徒。亦祗傳一二路而已。來精武後。以老之將至。恐失其傳。乃開始公開敎授。然十餘年來。同志能得窺堂奧者。尚屬寥寥。因其手法易學而難精。得竅更不易。其一路有一路之勁。一路有一路之巧。一路有一路不同之手法。其餘如遲速準確。變化輕巧。感覺靈敏。而至於通靈。五心丹田。聲氣相應。或陰勁。或陽勁。氣血筋脈。節節相通。更以科學與精神學相印證。則非盡人而能。無怪乎內家拳法有所謂五不傳者矣。古有謂鷹爪王之拿者。其法未知是否與此相類。吾亦雅不欲效江湖附會穿鑿之陋習。以少林武當相標榜。不過此五十路拳之手法。每多以靜制動。以柔制剛。剛因剛用。柔因柔用。剛中用柔。柔中用剛。順勁黏走。分筋剉骨。擊人於舊力已過。新力未發之間。其妙處實有不可思議者。但演練時。每一路須連續不斷。新陳代謝。一氣呵成。為難能可貴耳。陳師嘗謂予曰。他人學此拳。則行易知難。子則知而不行為可惜矣。予於此拳。未得專精。而所知槪略。有如上述。尚望同志研究發明而光大之是幸。
Eagle Claw Continuous Boxing is a profound boxing set. Throughout his life, Chen Zizheng did not teach it to people casually, and even his best students only received one or two lines of it. After he came to teach at the Jingwu Association, he realized he was getting older and worried that this set would be lost if he did not share it, so he then began teaching it publicly. However, many years later there are still very few who have been able to achieve more than a peek into its workings, for it is easy to learn but difficult to thoroughly understand, and even more difficult to master.
  Each line has its own energy. Each line has its own ingenuities. Each line has its own unique techniques. Other qualities are precision of speed, skillful transformations, and keen sensitivity. In terms of energetics, the “five centers” [palms of the hands, soles of the feet, top of the head] should direct energy to the elixir field, whether passive or active energy, coursing through all of the energetic pathways. This is corroborated both by scientific studies and spiritual studies.
  Such skills are only available to people who strive to the best of their ability, in the spirit of Boxing Methods of the Internal School, which lists five kinds of people never to be taught [those who are devious, those who love to fight, those who are addicted to booze, those who gossip, and those who are klutzy]. I am not entirely sure that this attitude applies to the seizing skills of the “Eagle Claw King” [i.e. Chen Zizheng], and I honestly have no wish to make the same kind of false claims that itinerant performers do, who falsely boast that what they are demonstrating is “Shaolin” or “Wudang”. However, throughout the techniques of the fifty lines, these principles are indeed to be applied:
  Use stillness to overcome movement. Use softness to overcome hardness.
  When hardness is called for, use hardness. When softness is called for, use softness.
  There is softness within hardness. There is hardness within softness.
  There is a smooth energy of sticking and yielding, as well as actions of tearing sinews and breaking bones.
  When fighting, there are astonishing subtleties that dwell in the moment between the old force that has just been issued and the new force that has not yet been issued. But when practicing, each line must be done without any interruption, fresh force immediately replacing stale force, a single flow from beginning to end, in order for it to be considered correct.
  Master Chen once told me: “Since people find this set to be easy to practice but difficult to understand, it sure is a shame if someone who does understand it doesn’t practice it.” I still have not given this set my fullest effort, but I know the basic outline and am presenting it below in hopes that my colleagues will study it and pass it on:

第一路。壓打。
Line 1: PRESS DOWN & HIT
第二路。挑打。
Line 2: CARRY & HIT
第三路。弸拳。
Line 3: SNAPPING FISTS
第四路。劐挑。
Line 4: SCOOP & CARRY
第五路。盖馬三拳。
Line 5: COVERING THE HORSE, TRIPLE CHOPPING FISTS
第六路。翻拳。
Line 6: OVERTURNING FISTS
第七路。腰殺掌。
Line 7: WAIST-SMASHING PALM
第八路。擺步行。
Line 8: SWINGING-STEP WALKING
第九路。轉環掌。
Line 9: CONTINUOUS PALM STRIKES
第十路。纏肘頓打。
Line 10: COILING ELBOW, KNOCK & HIT
第十一路。高挑低壓式。
Line 11: CARRY UP HIGH, PRESS DOWN LOW
第十二路。順步拳。
Line 12: STRAIGHT-STANCE PUNCH
第十三路。退步頓打式。
Line 13: RETREAT, KNOCK & HIT
第十四路。靠肘。
Line 14: CROWDING ELBOW
第十五路。㨪袖。
Line 15: SHAKING THE SLEEVES
第十六路。摔拳。
Line 16: THROWING FIST
第十七路。順風掃葉。
Line 17: WIND SWEEPS AWAY THE LEAVES
第十八路。叼手撩陰。
Line 18: GRAB, RAISING STRIKE TO THE GROIN
第十九路。頓打。
Line 19: KNOCK & HIT
第二十路。靠打。
Line 20: CROWD & HIT
第卄一路。叼手閃步掌。
Line 21: GRAB, DODGING-STEP PALM STRIKE
第卄二路。擄腕。
Line 22: CAPTURING THE WRIST
第卄三路。扔拳。
Line 23: HURLING FIST
第卄四路。抓法尖拳。
Line 24: CATCHING INCOMING PUNCHES
第卄五路。叼手翻拳。
Line 25: GRAB, OVERTURNING FIST
第卄六路。護肘插掌。
Line 26: GUARDING ELBOW, INSERTING PALM
第卄七路。抺眉。
Line 27: WIPING THE EYEBROW
第卄八路。抱月。
Line 28: EMBRACING THE MOON
第卄九路。外辦肘。
Line 29: DEFLECTING ELBOWS OUTWARD
第三十路。鑽拳。
Line 30: DRILLING FIST
第卅一路。上纏肘。
Line 31: UPWARD COILING ELBOW
第卅二路。下纏肘。
Line 32: DOWNWARD COILING ELBOW
第卅三路。上捆手。
Line 33: UPPER TYING HAND
第卅四路。下捆手。
Line 34: LOWER TYING HAND
第卅五路。叼打。
Line 35: GRAB & HIT
第卅六路。挾打。
Line 36: EMBRACE & HIT
第卅七路。八翻式。
Line 37: EIGHT OVERTURNINGS
第卅八路。挎打。
Line 38: HOIST & HIT
第卅九路。擄打。
Line 39: CAPTURE & HIT
第四十路。鷹爪力的抓法。
Line 40: EAGLE’S CLAWS FORCEFULLY SEIZING
第四十一路。行步叼打。
Line 41: WALKING STEPS, GRAB & HIT
第四十二路。閃展。
Line 42: DODGE & SPREAD
第四十三路。貼身靠打。
Line 43: CRAMMING THE BODY, CROWD & HIT
第四十四路。摔身法。
Line 44: THROWING TECHNIQUES
第四十五路。仙人換影。
Line 45: IMMORTAL SWITCHES PLACES WITH HIS SHADOW
第四十六路。葉裏藏花。
Line 46: HIDING THE FLOWER UNDER A LEAF
第四十七路。插硬步。
Line 47: INVADE WITH STUBBORN STEPS
第四十八路。後插步。
Line 48: INVADE WITH BACKWARD STEPS
第四十九路。激步的上法。
Line 49: STEP FORWARD WITH URGENT STEPS
第五十路。前後跐腿。
Line 50: FORWARD & BACK STAMPING KICKS

– – –

[To provide further information about Chen Zizheng, included below is a lengthy bio of him published in 體育月刊 Physical Education Monthly, volume 5, issue #7 (July 1, 1938).]

國術大師陳公子正軼事 郭成堯述唐甫
ANECDOTES ABOUT MARTIAL ARTS MASTER CHEN ZIZHENG by Guo Chengyao, also called Shutang

陳公紀平字子正,河北新城縣人也,生有異禀奇氣,體魄魁梧雄健,而胆力尤强,與村中羣兒角,無不披靡,隱然冠諸曹,其舅劉成有公見而奇之,曰,傳吾衣鉢者其此兒乎,劉公為河北國術名家劉武師仕俊之師弟也,先共學技於尹公百泉,當武師設敎京師時,劉公年已弱冠,習少林拳術於楊景山劉大全,習翻子門拳於劉得全,此諸公者皆身負絕技,名揚宇內之拳師也,劉公已得其個中三昧,造升堂入室之境,名振遐邇,當斯時治技名家,綠林豪客,遠道來訪者,咸為所創,故亦頗自負,及劉武師返里時,劉公年逾而立,功夫經驗,均臻上乘,目空一切,迨武師詢此數十年中所習之技術,進於何境,劉公乃擇已之所長而表演之,武師觀畢,曰汝於外家拳術,已升堂入室,惟於內家拳術,尚欠指點,然內家拳以岳氏鷹手為最,其他皆為梢末,然技能至此地步,已非世之一般名家所能企期,然汝所習者,活手多,死手少,攻則有餘,守則不足,能傷人而不能制人,故孫子曰,全國為上,破國次之,汝於此處當留意焉,劉公氣為不平,武師亦知其意,乃命出手,劉公身小敏捷,上下一團,拳脚過處,飄風颯颯,盤旋久之,乃為武師鷹手所困,於是劉公盡棄其所學,而學岳氏鷹手諸技,歷數春秋已登於堂隩,大有靑出於藍之槪,而實過之,武師嘗謂劉公曰,吾所傳之藝,祗汝一人,能得吾之神髓,傳吾衣鉢,當無訛矣,余在京敎授諸徒,雖有升堂入室之人,實未得吾之什一,彼等皆枯守師法,未至於化,技未至於神也,吾在京所傳岳氏散手,係從百零八手對打中摘出之手,而於鷹手更無傳人,汝善自習之,擇人而授之,則吾之衣鉢可以永垂於世也,劉公成有軟功硬功,均至登峯造極,硬功則臂可經三千斤之鐵車橫過其上,而臂不稍變色,以利刃劃膚而不入,臂可互相長短,各骨節均可脫離本位三四寸,拳脚出處,響澈金石,輕功則可越丈高之墻,而其敎法動人駭聞,每敎一手,則令陳公極其力以相搏,公竟從容引用此手以制之,無論其如何變化進攻,終逃不出所授之範圍外,精研妙旨,盡闡其諦,使能實用,以近於化境,臻於上乘為宗旨,器械亦然,當陳公學至六七年,則於夜深時,在暗室或曠野中,互相搏擊,是以陳公臂上刀劍砍之傷,腿上被踢之形狀,尤顯明易見,劉公年至九十餘,雖神經錯亂,然與動手,仍不倦少壯之勇,手足舞成一團,不逢則已,一逢到着身七八下皆作靑紫痕,詢其所使何手法。則茫然矣,陳公於劉公之藝業,集其大成,克紹衣鉢,故能北極塞北,南盡百越,至於南洋羣島,中外所遇,無有敵手者,良有以也。
Chen Jiping, called Zizheng, was from Xincheng County [now known as Gaobeidian], Hebei. He was born with extraordinary talent and a unique energy. His physique was robust and powerful, and he had an especially vigorous courage. Whenever he wrestled with the other boys in the village, they all got swept aside and he was the winner again and again. His uncle Liu Chengyou noticed his talent and said: “This is the kid I will pass on my art to.”
  Liu Chengyou had been a disciple of the famous Hebei martial arts master Liu Shijun. Having first learned from Yin Baiquan, he was entering adulthood just as martial arts masters started teaching in Beijing, so he went there and learned the Shaolin boxing art from Yang Jingshan and Liu Daquan, and also learned Fanzimen Boxing from Liu Dequan. Having learned from such skilled teachers, Liu Chengyou became known as a boxing master himself. Having obtained the knack and achieved mastery, his fame caused a stir everywhere. Other experts and masters, as well as outlaws and bandits, came from afar to pay him a visit, all coming away from the experience with injuries, and this made him rather conceited about his abilities. When he returned home, he was already in his thirties. His skill and experience were both at a high level, but he was arrogant. He asked his master about his progress after his decades of training, so Liu Shijun told him to demonstrate what he was best at, then told him after observing him:
  “You have mastered the external school of boxing arts, but are lacking in the internal school. The best of the internal arts is Yue Fei’s Eagle Claw, the rest being lesser examples. Although your skills are already beyond what ordinary people can hope for, what you have trained too many lively techniques and have no leisurely ones. You have plenty of ways to attack, but have not given enough attention to defense. You can injure an opponent, but you cannot control him. Sunzi said [Art of War, chapter 3]: ‘To take the enemy’s whole country intact is superior. To destroy his country is inferior.’ Think upon this point.”
  Liu Chengyou’s energy was unstable and thus his master could read his intentions. Liu Shijun asked him to perform some techniques. Chengyou’s body was slight and agile, his upper body and lower body were perfectly unified, his fists and feet were incredibly fast, producing sounds of wind with every action. He whirled around for a while and then suddenly his master shot out an Eagle Claw grab and stopped him in his tracks. Chengyou thereupon realized that everything he had learned had been a waste of time and immediately devoted himself to learning the Eagle Claw skills. After several years, he had attained such a profound mastery that he had surpassed his master, who then told him:
  “Of all those who I’ve taught my art to, you’re the only one who’s been able to obtain the essence of it. My complete teaching has at last been passed down without any mistakes. When I taught students in Beijing, although some achieved a certain level of mastery in what they learned, not one of them learned even one tenth of the entire art. They all become stultifyingly obsessive over merely imitating the teacher rather than being transformed by the art, and so their skills never reached a spiritual level. During my time there, I also taught Yue Fei’s Sanshou, being a hundred and eight essential techniques for sparring, but it was Eagle Claw especially that I was not able to pass down to people. Because you have the knack of practicing on your own, you may select your own students and teach them, and then my art will be able to live forever.”
  Liu Chengyou’s soft skill and hard skill were both at the highest level. As for his hard skill, a three-thousand pound iron wheel could be rolled over his arm and not even produce a bruise, a sharp blade could be slashed at his skin without cutting it open, he could dislocate the joints of his arms to stretch them longer by several inches, and a strike from his fist or feet could reverberate through metal or stone. He also possessed astonishing “light skill”, able to leap over a ten-foot wall.
  However, his teaching method was brutal. Every lesson Liu gave Chen Zizheng involved making Chen fight against him as hard as he could. In the midst of Liu’s onslaught, he would calmly recommend techniques for Chen to use to deal with what he was doing to him, pointing out that no matter how the opponent adapts or attacks, it will never be beyond the scope of these teachings. Liu had him intensively study the subtleties, fully explaining to him the essence of every part of the art, until he was able to apply it all. Chen’s skill approached perfection, because his ambition was to attain the highest level. It was then the same process all over again with weapons.
  After Chen had been learning from Liu for six or seven years, whenever Liu attacked him in the middle of the night, whether in a dark room or outside in the open wilderness, Chen was easily able to anticipate if his arm was about to be cut by a sword or his leg was about to receive a kick. Liu by then had passed ninety years old and was slipping into mental decline, but the movements of his hands were still as tireless and bold as those of a vigorous young man, his hands and feet acting in perfect coordination. If there was no contact, nothing happened, but once there was the slightest touch upon his body, he covered three quarters of his opponent’s body in bruises. Whenever he was asked about techniques, he would explain them with boundless elaboration.
  Chen accumulated great achievements in Liu’s art, becoming more than capable of carrying on the tradition, and was able to spread it north of the Great Wall, throughout the southern coastal provinces, and all the down to the South Seas archipelago. Challengers both Chinese and foreign provided no match for his superb skill.

陳公旣集其大成,而於鷹手,而於連環腿法,均有極深之研究,嘗謂人曰,手見手,無處走,沾衣如𪮰脈,當使其舊力已過,新力未發,乘機而入,始能得勝,此數語是公所嘗言也。
Chen’s accomplishments were vast, having deeply studied Eagle Claw techniques and also Continuous Kicking methods. He used to tell people: “The opponent sees a flurry of hands and cannot get away from it, touched everywhere, and it seems as though all his veins have been torn open.” “In the moment when his old force has just finished and his new force has not yet begun, take advantage of that opportunity to attack and you will win.” These are statements he would often say.

陳公於少年時,豪爽異常,當公結婚後年餘,適値新年,公赴岳家拜年,諸郎舅預施奇計以困窘之,將該村所有鎖犬數十條,均置陳公所必經之路側,當陳公經行至其地,使羣犬猛往直達,寡欲生呑,陳公乃施其鋤腿擒拿諸法,將狗擲諸房上五條,貫壁而死,餘者均遠立而吠,不敢稍前,諸舅知不可困,乃出佯作失迎,慰問陳公,公知彼等惡作劇,乃曰如此奈我何,徒傷犬命耳。
When Chen was young, he was very bold. In the year after his wedding, he went to the home of his wife’s family for a New Year’s party, but his brothers-in-law played a sneaky prank to try to embarrass him, gathering together ten of the village’s chained-up dogs and placing them in the path that he was sure travel. Once Chen had walked to that spot, all the dogs rushed at him. He stoically faced up to the situation, using uprooting kicks and seizing methods to throw half of them up onto a rooftop, where they died from getting impaled on decorative spikes. The rest of them then kept away and barked at him, not daring to go forward. All the brothers then knew there was no trapping him and came out to console him, pretending that they had failed to meet him on the way. Chen knew they were up to some mischief and said: “Oh, it’s no problem, I was just killing some dogs.”

民元公時家居,有河南少林嫡派兼習武當藝名某者,年僅而立,遠道來訪,揚言拳遍宇內,未遇敵手,曾挑戰於公,陳公乃毅然危諾,遂與彼接手,而彼實此中之健者,身體靈敏,步法奇異,拳身一片,無隙可擊,戰約半時,已被陳公用擒拿手,擲出丈外,旣起,懷慚而去,出與親者談,吾幾遍宇內,所遇各門各派名手,何止百人,而與余過手者,亦不下三四十人,然皆人間把式,未有若陳公者,夫陳公其來無形,其去無踪,飄忽莫定,視之為實,接之則虛,瞻之在前,忽然在後,防之於左,彼擊於右,實仙人之幻影,故吾防不勝防,吾雖敗北,亦云幸矣,今吾覩此身手,知昔日之高傲誤矣,吾從此遁矣,吾從此知人外有人之語,眞不誤矣。
In 1912, Chen was at home unemployed. There was a famous practitioner of both the Shaolin and Wudang arts who was still only in his twenties but had traveled widely, challenging boxers all over the nation, and had never yet met a truly worthy opponent. Then he challenged Chen. Chen resolutely accepted and crossed hands with the man. The man was actually very strong, his body was agile, his footwork was surprising, his fists and body worked in complete unison, and he left no gaps to take advantage of. After fighting for almost half an hour, he was finally caught by Chen in a qinna technique and thrown more than ten feet away. When he got up, he was ashamed and left. He eventually came out of his room and discussed the experience with a family member:
  “I traveled everywhere, meeting famous masters from many systems and styles, well over a hundred, and only about a third of them had skills that somewhat surpassed my own. But not one of them had skills that came close to Chen Zizheng. He comes in without showing any readable shape, then goes out without leaving a trace that he was even there, moving from place to place unpredictably. He looks solid, but feels empty. He appears to be in front, but then is suddenly behind. He defends on the left, but then his strike comes from the right. It was like I was fighting the imaginary image of an immortal, and so there was really nothing I could that would have any effect. And yet although I have suffered defeat, I feel fortunate. Now I can look more clearly upon my skills and know how wrong I was to have been so arrogant about them. Henceforth I will retire from such a life, for now I understand that the maxim ‘there’s always somebody better’ is truly no exaggeration.”

當民國紀元二年,其鄕每値冬防,叠出明火大盜,殺人越貨,性極兇狠,陳公恨之甚,每隻身驅逐,使不得逞,一日隆冬深夜,有悍匪五六人,執刀棒槍火,窺視其村,為公察覺,即赤手越墻而出,追至村西,五匪料不能逃,環列以待,擧刀揚棒,以性命相拼,公從容折道傍拱㧕,擧而逆迎之,如撲蝗焉,五匪隨𤊵顚跌,數起數仆,環跪求釋,公責以大義,彼皆鼠竄以去,後知五匪死二生三,然生者亦殘廢矣。
In 1913, all the local villages had stored away their valuables in preparation for the winter, but they were repeatedly getting robbed by brutal bandits who were slaughtering people to steal their goods. Chen deeply hated them and decided to drive them off by himself and stop them from getting away with this anymore. One day in the middle of winter, as the dead of night approached, five or six of these bandits emerged, carrying sabers, clubs, and guns, to spy out the village. When Chen realized they were there, he climbed over a wall barehanded and pursued them to the western part of the village.
  The bandits in turn became aware of him and decided to not let him escape, forming a circle and lying in wait for him with their sabers and clubs raised in readiness to strike. Sensing his life was at risk, Chen calmly changed direction through an archway, then suddenly appeared and set upon them, attacking as though he was snatching locusts. The bandits all fell down, getting up only to fall again, and then sought to escape by crawling away on their knees. Chen now relented with a sense justice served and allowed them to scurry away like mice. It was learned afterward that two of the bandits had in fact died and three had survived but were permanently crippled.

民五年,我黑龍江第一中學敎員劉鳳池王某邀先生蒞江,當時一般黑省拳術名家,爭前觀摩,未有不讚陳公技術之精,傳授之高也,然雖服陳公,未觀以施絕技為恨,故暗擇同人中最悍,素習摔角術者十餘人,相率較要,無不隨手跌撲,內以王振剛榮文淸二人受創頗重,因二人為此中之健者,榮被一指破天庭,血流涔涔,王已將陳公抱起,見陳公身一抖,而王撲跌丈遠矣,在江與成堯由述孔曲乙新等編拳術摘要一書,印行於世,公在黑省數年,但未能住長,當公去江時,乃由成堯代理斯職,繼因上海名流黃任之沈信卿王壯飛吳志靑諸先生,震於陳公之名,連電邀請,蒞滬表演,辭意懇摯,熱忱不可却,始就道南下,旣至,各界紳士歡迎於敎育會,表演於公共體育場者匝月,滬上尚武之風,因之大振,乃留劉致祥劉金閣二君在滬敎授,己則仍返東省,盖欲使舊友生徒之深造意也,次年,上海精武體育會幹事盧偉昌陳公哲姚蟾伯先生等,電函相商,請公再南,俾得光大此道,公亦以久居一隅,有背普濟之旨,遂再南遊,上海精武體育會創於民國前二年,乃我國提倡國術最大最有組織之機關也,挾精武主義以强身强種為歸依,體育萬能,而德智並重,志士仁人,奔走提倡,社會風氣為之轉移,故分會遍於國內,且遠及南洋羣島,風會所趨,會員極一時之盛,取精用宏,敎授多一時之選,陳公旣至該會,專敎岳氏散手拳法,解晰詳微,剖分入理,着着喩以致用之功,處處點以變化之妙,因之學以致用,敎風為之一變,會務愈行發達,時聖約翰大學及中國公學皆慕陳公之名而敦請焉。
In 1916, Liu Fengchi, at that time a teacher at 1st Secondary School in Heilongjiang, and a certain Mr. Wang [perhaps Wang Chengbin] invited Chen to teach his art in the province. Well-known local practitioners of boxing arts crowded forward to learn from him, all praising him for the depths of his skills and the heights of his teachings. Although they were convinced of his talent, they regretted that they had not yet gotten to actually see him use his unique abilities, so they secretly selected the best of their colleagues, gathering about a dozen men who were experts in Shuaijiao, and then arranged for them to wrestle with him. All of them were easily thrown and the two strongest of them, Wang Zhengang and Rong Wenqing, were seriously injured. Rong received a gash in his forehead that was streaming with blood. Wang tried to wrap Chen in a bear hug and lift him up, but with a shake from Chen he was hurled more than ten feet away.
  While in Heilongjiang, Chen and I, together with You Shukong and Qu Yixin, produced and published the book Summary of Martial Arts. Chen lived in Heilongjiang for several years, but was not able to stay longer, and when he left, he put me in charge in his place. He had to go because some distinguished persons in Shanghai, namely Huang Renzhi, Shen Xinqing, Wang Zhuangfei, and Wu Zhiqing, were amazed by what they had heard about Chen and kept cabling him invitations to come demonstrate his art. Due to the sincerity of their communications, Chen could not reject their enthusiasm, and so he journeyed south.
  When he arrived in Shanghai, he was welcomed to educational associations by gentlemen from all walks of life. He spent an entire month demonstrating at public sports grounds, bringing an enormous boost to Shanghai’s martial culture. He then left Liu Zhixiang and Liu Jin’ge behind to teach the art in Shanghai while he himself went back to Heilongjiang, hoping to move the more experienced students there onto more advanced studies.
  The following year, the administrators of the Shanghai Jingwu Athletic Association – Lu Weichang, Chen Gongzhe, and Yao Chanbo – cabled him messages, inviting him to again come south in order to carry these arts forward even further. Chen had once again been staying in the northeast corner of the country for a long time and he now felt that he had been neglecting the mission to help popularize these teachings, so he journeyed south again.
  The Shanghai Jingwu Athletic Association had been founded in 1910 and became the largest and most widespread organization for promoting our nation’s martial arts. The “Jingwu doctrine” treats the concept of strengthening the self to strengthen the masses as almost a religion, aiming at making physical education universal, and also giving equal emphasis to moral and intellectual development. It is run by people with lofty ideals, rushing around promoting a shift in the habits of society. Therefore they have established branches throughout the nation and as far away as the Malay archipelago. As the Jingwu Association became more popular, the members flourished, and by being able to select the best from the most, the instruction was of the highest quality.
  When Chen came to the Jingwu Association, he focused on teaching the boxing methods of Yue Fei’s Sanshou, which he had analyzed in detail and broke it down into more readily learnable pieces, always relating the techniques to their applicability and constantly pointing out the marvels of their adaptability. In order for the students to be able to more effectively use what they were learning, his teaching method had to evolve, and with it the Jingwu Association was helped to flourish even more. At that time, he was also greatly admired by St. John’s University and the National School, both of which invited him to teach as well.

方陳公之執敎於聖約翰也,有敎授劉君曲章者,乃湘南名士,旣精文藝,尤精拳法,久遊滬上,志訪名師,因雲君作丞,得識陳公,一日過訪於精武會,劉君偽為初學者,謙謙請敎,實則暗中準備,以絕技進攻,陳公觀其進退之敏捷,已知為此中老手,乃以鋤腿法勝之,劉君三進三跌,時會衆圍觀,無不駭然,皆歎服劉君進攻之猛,而陳公破之之妙也,後劉君拜服之餘,以自書之一聯持贈,曰,「奔雷閃電稱神技」「捲鐵舒鈎著勇名」,以誌其景仰之忱,陳公謙受之,遂與定交焉。
Chen also taught for a time at St. John’s. There was a teacher there named Liu Quzhang, who had been a literary celebrity in Hunan, an expert in art and literature, and was also especially skilled in boxing arts. He had long ago come to Shanghai in hopes of meeting a famous teacher, and got know about Chen through Yun Zuocheng. One day, Liu went to the Jingwu Association to pay Chen a visit. Liu pretended to be a beginner, modestly asking for instruction while he was actually stealthily preparing to pounce.
  Once Liu launched forward with a skillful attack, Chen saw that he possessed a true nimbleness for advancing and retreating. Now knowing that Liu was an experienced practitioner, Chen therefore used uprooting kicks to defeat him. Liu attacked three times only to fall down three times. Association members crowded around them to watch, everyone amazed and gasping in awe at the fierceness of Liu’s attacks and the ingenuity of Chen’s counters. Liu finally saluted to Chen in acknowledgement of his failure and a little while later presented him a gift of a couplet in his own calligraphy to show his sincere admiration, which said: “Quick as a clap of thunder or a flash of lightning, his skill is magical. Able to bend iron bars and straighten iron hooks, his boldness will live on in fame.” Chen graciously accepted it and they became friends.

民國紀元十年,香港精武體育會致函上海中央總會,聘請敎授,總會有難色,盖以彼會地近羊城,南連羣島,隱握南天諸會之總,主持瞻觀所繫,地位十分重要,且該埠拳師,不乏名家,非有資深望重之老手,實不足以負重詫,陳公聞之,毅然請往,時有美人號稱力士者,雄據南洋,傲視華人,聞陳公名,約與比賽,而陳公諾,遂訂日比之,陳公首以鋤腿法擊之,美人應聲顚起數尺,若於台下,而美人以腿擊為犯規,遂重與比賽,未數合以廻肘挾其頸,而擲於台下丈餘,美人因此成仇隙,遂陽為執禮受敎,而陰施毒計以必勝而甘心焉,一日陳公方敎授其他學生時,美人從陳公背後,施以重手法襲擊,陳公聞風即轉身應之,以掌劈之,而西人之掌,已裂至腕骨,一西人又繼前進,公遂施兕牛望月之術制之,西人面已向背,(頭即轉後)西人自經此重創,遂掩旗息鼓,不敢再以技擊稱雄也,故在該會主敎,歷時三載,全埠人士,殆成國術化,香港大學聖士提反皇仁書院孔聖會等,皆先後組織國術班,專聘陳公指導,使有志之士,皆受雨化,造益靑年,實非淺鮮,後因久羈南天,急思北返,乃留劉致祥劉占五等在港任敎職,已則過滬津而回故里焉。
In 1921, the Hong Kong Jingwu Association sent a letter to the central headquarters in Shanghai inviting Chen to give instruction. The Shanghai headquarters initially expressed some reluctance. On one hand, because the Hong Kong school was in such an important location, so close to Yangcheng [alternate name for Guangzhou] and being a port to the South Seas archipelago, it was felt that it ought to be mindful of how much it promotes itself so as not to steal any thunder from the other Jingwu schools in the area. And on the other hand, there was no lack of famous teachers in Hong Kong already, and without such distinguished masters, the school would not be able to endure. But when Chen heard about it, he ignored these considerations, firmly accepted the invitation, and went.
  At that time, there was an American strong man whose prowess had become well-known along the southern coast and who displayed contempt for Chinese people. When he heard of Chen’s fame, he challenged him to a match. Chen consented and a day was arranged for it. Chen started the bout by attacking him with uprooting kicks and the Westerner responded by falling down several feet away, almost tumbling off the stage, then complained that the use of kicking techniques was a violation of the rules. Recommencing the fight, there were just a few exchanges before Chen wrapped his arm around the man’s neck and threw him off the stage more than ten feet away. Because of this, he began a bitter feud against Chen, contrary to the etiquette of asking instruction from the victor, and was willing to resort to sneaky schemes to defeat him.
  One day, while Chen was in the midst of teaching other students, the Westerner came up from behind him and made a powerful surprise attack. Chen sensed it and whirled around to respond to it, using a palm to chop at the incoming palm, which fractured the man’s forearm. But the man continued to advance anyway, so Chen then used the technique of “rhinoceros gazes at the moon” to control him, and as he already had his back turned to Chen, this resulted in him only injuring himself further. The Westerner then “folded up his flag and silenced his drum”, never daring to have another bout to prove who is better. As a result, Chen was made the head instructor at the Hong Kong Jingwu Association.
  By three years later, almost everyone in Hong Kong had been affected by martial arts. The Confucian Society in both St. Stephen’s College and Queen’s College at the University of Hong Kong had one after the other organized martial arts classes, specially inviting Chen to give instruction. This had a remarkable influence on the students with ambition and gave benefit to young people that was by no means meager. After having spent a long time in the south, he became eager to return to his home in the north, so he left Liu Zhixiang and Liu Zhanwu in charge of instruction in Hong Kong, and he then passed through Shanghai and Tianjin on his way back to his hometown.

十三年春,上海中央精武成立師範班,以造就國術師資,陳公任敎職,先後在滬數載,對會衆循循善誘,以柔輭而活,由活而快,而剛,而運氣行神,以致於實用,為練功歷程,循序漸進,故學者一被春風,無不鼓舞發憤勤修者,如李明德陳展璞梁子鵬張俊庭李佩弦薛鞏初陳貴立陳光昭君等,此皆陳公在南,對我派最有心得之士也,民十七年,南京擧行第一次全國國術考試,甄拔國術人材,以資倡勵,而陳公無意與焉,盖以天性沉潛,不欲矜張,雖懷奇技,不敢自負,故每與人坐談終日,雅謔温文,未嘗略及拳術,學實若虛,其此之謂乎,然此次各方故友,函電催勸,專人相邀,大有非陳公參加,不足以壯其聲色者,公勉赴斯會,及至,已屆考期,倉促報名與試,京中知友,無不歡然,冀陳公一顯身手也,不竟先聲奪人,素望昭著,遂致數次登台,遇所編對手,率皆棄權逡巡,未敢與較,願敗下風,陳公兀立,索然不歡,退語人曰,天下英雄,其若此乎,抑英雄之未至耶,吾甚悔此一行,南京國考後,公回滬,擬將行拳十路,連拳五十路,編著成書,以餉國人,行拳已於精武畫報中先後登載矣。
In the spring of 1924, the Shanghai Jingwu Association established a teacher-training program and put Chen in charge of it. He made many trips to Shanghai during those years. He patiently guided the teachers-to-be through a step-by-step process of going from softness to liveliness to quickness to hardness, and then to moving energy and acting from spirit, resulting in practical skills. The students felt blessed by such an education and all came away from it inspired, determined, and hardworking. Teachers such as Li Mingde, Chen Zhanpu, Liang Zipeng, Zhang Junting, Li Peixian, Xue Gongchu, Chen Guili, and Chen Guangzhao were all trained by Chen in the south and became the most experienced authorities in the Eagle Claw art.
  In 1928, Nanjing hosted the first National Martial Arts Examinations. The purpose of it was to select the most talented martial artists in order to better promote these arts. Chen had no interest in participating, for he had a reserved disposition and no desire to show off, and yet since he possessed a unique level of skill, he did not dare to appear arrogant about it either. For this reason, whenever he sat and talked with someone for a long time, he remained cultured and urbane, never touching upon boxing arts, and elegantly analyzed things of substance as though they mere superficialities. However, old friends from all over the country sent him letters and telegrams urging him to attend, inviting him by way of saying how awful the event would be if he was not there. He did not have it in him to fight against these voices, so he forced himself to go to the tournament.
  When he finally arrived, it had already started, so he hastily signed up to compete. He had many colleagues in Nanjing and they were all happy to see him, looking forward to a display of his skill, but unexpectedly there would be nothing to see, since his mighty reputation had preceded him. He mounted the platform several times to face an opponent, but they each kept away, not daring to engage with him, sure they would be defeated. Chen each time stood motionless, awaiting some attack, and finally got bored with the whole thing, so he left, saying to someone as he walked away: “Is this what the world’s heroes are like or have they not arrived yet? I regret that I came.” [Chen is listed among the competitors as getting no further than the elimination rounds. Leaving the stage in disgust, thereby making his opponent the winner of the round by default, would seem to explain this otherwise puzzling detail.]
  After the tournament, Chen returned to Shanghai, where he set about making books about Ten-Line Walking Boxing and Fifty-Line Continuous Boxing in order to supply our countrymen with study material. His instructions on Walking Boxing had already been appearing in serialized form in Jingwu Illustrated [spread over the course of several years, starting in 1927].

十九年冬,陳公北旋,道經北京,寓於成堯家,應遜淸洵貝勒之請,表演國術,公以鷹手數手表演之,成堯從師命,亦表演散手,洵貝勒觀畢而評云,郭先生雖為陳公之弟子,而技術之飄酒風彩,勇猛超過之,沈悶老當,則屬陳公,眞絕技也,一日成堯與先師論樁步應穩於泰山之說,公以立正姿式,使成堯以岳氏雙推手推之,成堯極生平之力,而公穩不稍動,觀者咸為咋舌,成堯亦暗驚實出意料之外也。
In the winter of 1930, Chen returned north, and when he passed through Beijing, he stayed at my home. Zaixun, formerly Prince Rui of Manchu nobility, invited Chen to demonstrate martial arts, and so he humbly performed several Eagle Claw techniques for him. As his student, I also participated in demonstrating sparring techniques. After watching us, Zaixun commented: “Even though Guo is your student, his skills are just as beautiful, fierce, and subtle as yours, quite remarkable.”
  One day, Chen and I were discussing the principle of “standing as stable as Mt. Tai”. Chen got into the position of standing at attention and had me push him in the manner of Yue Fei’s double-handed push. I pushed for all I was worth, but Chen stood stably and did not move an inch. Onlookers were struck speechless with amazement. I too was silently surprised, for I was sure I would be able to move him at least a little bit.

陳公以胃病歿於北京德國醫院,嗚呼,天道與人生,其難知有如此者,以陳公體魄之强,天性之厚,病不三月,竟爾仙逝,椎胸飲泣,其何能瀉悲恨於萬一也。
Chen died of stomach illness at Beijing German Hospital [10 am, July 12, 1933, at the age of 55]. Alas, the way of Nature and the foibles of human existence are difficult to understand. But at least due to Chen’s great physical strength and vibrant disposition, his illness did not linger miserably long and he was able to pass away with suddenness rather than suffering. I shrink my chest and weep in silence, for there is no way I can express even one ten-thousandth of my grief.

按陳公之病,盖因知友劉鳳池遭意外之禍,不能為一雪不平,故抑鬱寡歡,常憂憤塡膺,不能自己,其唯一慰藉品,借酒以消愁耳,然酒後使氣,每慷慨激昂,縱論天下事,而憤懣更甚,病之種也,其基於此乎,陳公服務社會,提倡國術,積二十餘年,北極塞北,南至港粵,江浙兩湖,凡屬大都巨埠,無不足跡迨遍,所到之地,生徒雲從,凡與交接,每多景仰,實以陳公天性正直,待人接物,率由誠敬和平所致也,其撒手西歸,豈徒我輩之不幸,實亦國術前途之不幸也。
His illness probably had something to do with learning that his friend Liu Fengchi had met with a terrible accident. He simply could not endure the injustice of it and fell into a depression punctuated by bouts of anger. Unable to console himself, he turned to wine to drown his sorrows, then after getting drunk, he would get swept up into an episode of ranting cynicism in which vented freely about all of the problems of the world, which only ended up making him even more depressed. This process likely formed the basis of his illness.
  Chen did a great service to society by promoting martial arts for more than twenty years, to the north beyond the Great Wall, to the south in Hong Kong and Guangdong, and to Jiangsu and Zhejiang, Hunan and Hubei, leaving his mark in every big city. Wherever he went, students amassed like clouds. Everyone he met admired him, most of all for his upright nature and for his sincere and courteous personality. His death is not just a misfortune for those of us who were his students, but indeed for the future of Chinese martial arts as a whole.

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