Lao Tzu Tao Te Ching Translations

3 Translations At A Glance

Tao Te Ching of Lao Tzu is so profound its true essence is unable to be captured by any one translation alone.  In order to get the most from the book, the best compromise is to read more than one translations — if you are not prepared to learn the archaic  Chinese.  For this reason, I have put together three well-received translations side-by-side.  They include translations by:

  • James Legge (1815 – 1897), a Scottish Sinologist and the first Professor of Chinese at Oxford University (1876–1897). In association with Max Müller he prepared the monumental Sacred Books of the East series, published in 50 volumes between 1879 and 1891, and the translation of Tao Te Ching is found in Volume 39.
  • J.H. McDonald. I have no knowledge about the translator, but his translation for the public domain done in 1996 is quite a good one.
  • Lin Yutang (1895 – 1976), a highly respected writer, translator, linguist and inventor. Upon graduation from Saint John’s University in Shanghai, he received a half-scholarship to continue study for a doctoral degree at Harvard University.

If you are looking for some ready quotes, click here.

 

Chapter Index

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36
37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45
46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54
55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63
64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72
73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81