The Art of War – Sun Tzu
Download The Art of War ebook. The Art of War is an ancient Chinese military treatise dating from the Spring and Autumn period in 5th century BC. The work, which is attributed to the ancient Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu (“Master Sun”, also spelled Sunzi), is composed of 13 chapters. Each one is devoted to a distinct aspect of warfare and how that applies to military strategy and tactics. For almost 1,500 years it was the lead text in an anthology that would be formalised as the Seven Military Classics by Emperor Shenzong of Song in 1080. The Art of War remains the most influential strategy text in East Asia. It has a profound influence on Eastern and Western military thinking, business tactics, legal strategy and beyond.
The book was first translated and published into French in 1772 (re-published in 1782) by the Jesuit Jean Joseph Marie Amiot and a partial translation into English was attempted by British officer Everard Ferguson Calthrop in 1905 under the title The Book of War. The first annotated English translation was completed and published by Lionel Giles in 1910. Numerous military and political leaders such as Mao Zedong, Võ Nguyên Giáp, and Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. have drawn inspiration from the work.
I want to tell future readers of this book in this way. I read it first when I was 14 or 15. I thought it was a book on how to smartly fight a war. Then I re-read it when I was 28 and it occurred to me that it may be an instruction book on how to navigate an honorable life. Years passed and I recently found it at the bottom of a box in my closet. I read it again at age 56. I realized it has more to offer. If you read this book, you will actively have to replace Sun Tzus’ ancient terms and placement of hierarchy and apply them to modern situations and people. Family, bosses, neighbors, employees and the list goes on. It is my belief that this “manual” can help solve minor and major disruptions in life if used correctly. It is a book meant for good.
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Sun Tzu (/ˌsuːnˈdzuː/; also rendered as Sun Zi 孫子) was a Chinese general, military strategist, and philosopher who lived in the Eastern Zhou period of ancient China. Sun Tzu is traditionally credited as the author of The Art of War, a widely influential work of military strategy that has affected both Western and Eastern philosophy. Aside from his legacy as the author of The Art of War, Sun Tzu is revered in Chinese and the Culture of Asia as a legendary historical figure. His birth name was Sun Wu, and he was known outside of his family by his courtesy name Changqing. The name Sun Tzu by which he is best known in the West is an honorific which means “Master Sun”.
Sun Tzu’s historicity is uncertain. Sima Qian and other traditional historians placed him as a minister to King Helü of Wu and dated his lifetime to 544–496 BC. Modern scholars accepting his historicity nonetheless place the existing text of The Art of War in the later Warring States period based upon its style of composition and its descriptions of warfare. Traditional accounts state that the general’s descendant Sun Bin also wrote a treatise on military tactics, also titled The Art of War. Since both Sun Wu and Sun Bin were referred to as Sun Tzu in classical Chinese texts, some historians believed them identical prior to the rediscovery of Sun Bin’s treatise in 1972.
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