The Art of War: Complete Texts and Commentaries


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Translated by Thomas Cleary
Trade paperback book
ISBN 9781590300541
456 pages, 6.00 x 9.00″

The best selling translation of the ancient Chinese manual of strategy and counsel – plus a new version based on recently discovered manuscripts – accompanied by two classical commentaries.

Compiled more than two thousand years ago, is a study of the anatomy of organizations in conflict. It is perhaps the most prestigious and influential book of strategy in the world today. Now, this unique volume brings together the essential versions of Sun Tzu’s text, along with illuminating commentaries and auxiliary texts written by distinguished strategists. The translation, by the renowned translator Thomas Cleary, have all been published previously in books form. This comprehensive collection contains:

The Art of War: This edition of Sun Tzu’s text includes the classic collection of commentaries by eleven interpreters.

Mastering The Art of War: Consisting of essays by two prominent statesmen-generals of Han Dynasty China, Zhuge Liang and Liu Ji, this book develops the strategies of Sun Tzu’s classic into a complete handbook of organization and leadership. It draws on episodes from the panorama of Chinese history to show in concrete terms the proper use of Sun Tzu’s principles.

The Lost Art of War: Written more than one hundred years after Sun Tzu’s text, by Sun Bin, a linear descendant of Sun Tzu, this classic of political and military strategy is faithful to the principles of The Art of War, while developing their practical application much further.

The Silver Sparrow Art of War: A version of Sun Tzu’s Art of War based on a manuscript of the classic text discovered at a Chinese archeological site in China’s Shangdong Province in 1972, which contains previously unknown fragments.

About the translator:

Thomas Cleary holds a Ph.D. in East Asian Language and Civilizations from Harvard University. He is the translator of more than fifty volumes of Buddhist, Taoist, Confucian, and Islamic texts from Sanskrit, Chinese, Japanese, Pali, and Arabic.

Praise for The Art of War

“Thomas Cleary’s translation of The Art of War makes immediately relevant one of the greatest Chinese classical texts. There’s not a dated maxim or vague prescription in it … You can throw out all those contemporary books about management and leadership.”


Additional information

Weight 1.35 lbs
Dimensions 8 × 6 × 1 in


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