Wen Tingyun

Poet and Lyricist

Wen Tingyun (812–870) was an important Chinese lyricist of the late Tang Dynasty.

He was born in Qin, Shanxi province, China. Wen became regarded as the first truly distinctive writer of ci, the song-verse style of poetry that dominated Chinese poetry during much of the late Tang dynasty and the Song dynasty.[1] Most of his poems are "boudoir"-style verses that described the opulent furnishings and gardens of solitary women and their hidden desires.[2] This style of poetry was commonly used for romantic communications between men and women in the entertainment districts of the Chinese capital Chang'an during the Tang dynasty.[2]


  1. Stephen Owen, An Anthology of Chinese Literature: Beginnings to 1911 (New York, London: W.W. Norton, 1996): 565.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Owen (1996): 565.