The celebrated Shaolin Monastery on Mount Song preserves a considerable number of ancient stone monuments with engraved inscriptions. This masterly epigraphical study by one of the leading Japanese historians of China focuses on the important political relations between this important religious institution and the imperial court in medieval China. It includes a summary history of research on the stele composed by Pei Cui (ca. 665-736), and discusses the importance attached to it by the Shaolin monks. P. A. Herbert translated the text from Japanese with annotations.