I had heard the story of Bian Que (a famous healer in ancient Chinese history) and his not-so-famous brothers several times in oral form, and always wanted to see the original. Recently while doing a little light reading (Science & Civilization in China, Vol. VI:6) I came across this translation of the original story, which first appeared in the Warring States period text《鹖冠子》.
Note that Needham uses the Yale romanization of 扁鹊 - Pien Chhüeh
Phang Hsüan said to the king of Cho-hsiang, ‘Have you not heard that Duke Wên of Wei asked the great physician, Pien Chhüeh , “of your three brothers, which is the best physician?” Pien Chhüeh answered “The eldest is the best, then the second, and I am the least worthy of the three.” Duke Wên said, “Might I hear about this?” Pien Chhüeh replied, “My eldest brother, in dealing with diseases, is attentive to the spirit (shên). Before [any symptoms] have formed, he has already got rid of it. Thus his fame has never reached beyond our own clan. My next brother treats disease when its signs are most subtle, so his name is unknown beyond our own village. As for myself, I use stone needles on the blood vessels, prescribe strong drugs, and fortify the skin and the flesh. Thus my name has become known among all the feudal lords.” ’
Here is the translated passage in (traditional) Chinese, copied from the Chinese Text Project page linked above:
A few thoughts: