Jan 18, 2021|

After 153 Bidding Rounds, JD Auctions Famous Literary Couple’s Autographed Copy


By Vivian Yang

A book titled Will Drink Tea (《将饮茶》) by Yang Jiang (1911-2016), a well-known Chinese writer and translator, was auctioned at RMB 66,500 yuan on JD’s auction platform on Jan. 12, after 153 bidding rounds with a starting price of RMB 500 yuan. There are two pages of handwriting dedication between the cover and the title page by Yang and her husband, which makes this book a collectable item.  The inscriptions are poems expressing their mutual respect and appreciation.

Yang was the wife of late Chinese literary giant Qian Zhongshu (1910-1998), who is best known for his satirical novel Fortress Besieged (《围城》), which is considered one of the masterpieces of twentieth century Chinese literature and widely recognized internationally.

Yang Jiang (left) and Qian Zhongshu

The couple became household names in China not only because of their literary achievements, but also because of their love, recounted through written stories about their relationship and family. In the auctioned book, Madame Yang wrote about how she met and fell in love with Qian, and how they supported each other during their studies in the UK and France from 1935 to 1937, and during the decade-long turbulent period in China from 1966 to 1976.