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Preface to Mudan Ting (1598)
- Has the world ever seen a woman's love to rival that of Du Liniang? Dreaming of a lover she fell sick; once sick she became ever worse; and finally, after painting her own portrait as a legacy to the world, she died. Dead for three years, still she was able to live again when in the dark underworld her quest for the object of her dream was fulfilled. To be as Du Liniang is truly to have known love.
- As quoted in Daniel S. Burt's The Drama 100: A Ranking of the Greatest Plays of All Time (New York: Facts On File, 2008), p. 184
- Love is of source unknown, yet it grows ever deeper. The living may die of it, by its power the dead live again. Love is not love at its fullest if one who lives is unwilling to die for it, or if it cannot restore to life one who has so died. And must the love that comes in dream necessarily be unreal? For there is no lack of dream lovers in this world.
- In The Peony Pavilion, trans. Cyril Birch (Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2002), p. ix
- Encyclopedic article on Tang Xianzu on Wikipedia