Cat 172: A letter of apology for getting drunk

Anthologies of model letters were produced by the Dunhuang Bureau of Etiquette for the guidance of officials and others. This one contains a note: 'Copied by Yin Xurong of Weian at the wei hour (1–3 pm)' and gives a date corresponding to 13 October 856. It starts with useful phrases on the weather: 'seventh month, the first of autumn, and getting cooler.' The letters are grouped according to titles (in red) such as 'Communications of a complimentary nature between fellow officials'. The letter shown here is to apologise the morning after to a dinner host for getting drunk and behaving badly.

Ink on paper
The British Library, Or.8210/S.2200