Thirteen Columns from Ode to the Nymph of the Luo River (洛神賦十三行)
Wang Xianzhi (王獻之, 344–386), Jin Dynasty (266–420)
Engraving on stone, 29.5 x 27 x 1.2 cm, Capital Museum, Beijing
In this work, Wang Xianzhi copied a famous ode by Cao Zhi (曹植). The original calligraphy was written on hemp paper, and by the Tang dynasty only thirteen columns with 250 characters remained. This masterpiece was rendered in vigorous but effortless strokes and composed in an elegant yet steady and powerful style. The characters next to one another, both vertically and horizontally, seem to be mutually dependent and vitally interactive and are devoid of any traces of clerical script. Wang Xianzhi’s unparalleled small-standard script gives one the feeling of complete freedom from all earthly worries and restraint. 
 Wang Yuchi, Striving for Perfection amid Social Upheavals, Chapter 3 of Chinese Calligraphy / Ouyang Zhongshi et al., translated and edited by Wang Youfen.