Chinese novella form written in vernacular language (flourished in Ming dynasty)
A huaben (Chinese: 话本; pinyin: huàben) is a Chinese short- or medium-length story or novella Setsuwa(Chinese: 說話; pinyin: shuō huà, Japanese: 説話, romanized: setsuwa) written mostly in vernacular language, sometimes including simple classical language. In contrast to the full-length Chinese novel, it is generally not divided into chapters and recounts a limited number of characters or events. The earliest huaben are reported in the 12th century during the Song dynasty, but the genre did not flourish until the late Ming dynasty, and after the mid-17th century did not produce works of originality. In the development of Chinese fiction, the huaben are heirs of the bianwen (Buddhist tales) and chuanqi of the Tang dynasty, and are the predecessors of the stories and full-length novels of the Ming.
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