Zhuge liang - a military strategist

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Zhuge liang - a military strategist

Unread postby Jiangji » Wed Aug 11, 2004 4:21 pm

I don't understand why many people in this forum doens't think he is a military strategist. It is true that he is overatted in the novel but he is definitely one of the most intelligent person in RTK.

Failure in all his northen campaign should not be used as the reason. The wu launched 13 attack on Hebei and all failed. Lun xun also several times beaten by cao Rui. Does this make the wu commanders weak? Zhuge liang uses a lot of tactic and strategy in his northen campaign. Every time sima yi went offensive, he just fall into zhuge liang trap.

Zhuge also unified the southern districts of Nan Tribes, after capturing and releasing Meng Huo 7 times, until he surrendered formidably. The wei launch two invasion on shu while Zhuge liang was still alive but failed. The first one was after Liu bei died, sima yi advice cao pi to launch attack on shu from five different routes. Zhuge liang manage to came up with the solution to neutralize the invasion.The second one is merely of heavy weather.

Zhuge liang help liu bei to take jingzhou and Yizhou. Liu bei would long be dead without zhuge liang. Shu would not have existed at all. If Zhou yu is that clever as many have said, he would have take jingzhou first. Personally I don't see zhou yu, lun xun, lu meng and sima yi help their rulers to gain so much territory.

He was the inventor of the scaled ladder, the arbalest units, the wooden oxe (transportation device that Sima Yi's army nor himself could figure out how to use). Under him, Shu become much stronger economically.

Can anyone give me info on the achievement of zhou yu other than battle of chibi ?
Last edited by Jiangji on Thu Aug 12, 2004 8:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Unread postby Rommel » Wed Aug 11, 2004 6:33 pm

Wooden Ox? Did anybody after three kingdoms use it ever? Or was it too complicated to made so nobody knew how to make it except ZGL? What policy did ZGL have to improve Shu's economic? Was Shu weak economically under Liu Zhang? How did ZGL help Liu Bei to plot against Liu Zhang to take Yizhou? Without victory of Chibi, which was conducted by Zhou Yu how could ZGL get away from Cao Cao's love chase? ZGL helped Liu Bei to take Jingzhou from who? How did he do that?
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Unread postby Shield of Rohan » Wed Aug 11, 2004 9:08 pm

Zhuge Liang was most intelligent, considering the humble circumstances Liu Bei was in when they first met. The invasion of Jing went perfectly, as did the invasion of Shu. Zhuge Liang was probably more of a grand strategist (devised campaigns and long-term plans rather than the strategy of each battle) though he showed his greatness there on several occasions against Sima Yi in the north, and especially against the Nanman. The invasion of Yi was just the beginning of his grand strategy to eliminate Wei, and he seemed a good judge of character more often than not, trusting battlefield strategy after the taking of Jing to Pang Tong and Fa Zheng. Wu's unforseen betrayal was the wrench thrown in his plan, but could not have been forseen, nor prevented (unless in fact Zhuge Liang wanted some other general to guard Jing as he had wanted someone else to destroy the remains of the Wei army at Huarong). Kongming knew exactly how to guide Shu to its ultimate goal, though the fallacies of other men destroyed his plans over the years.

In battlefield strategy, he defeated a large and proud Nanman army in the Southern campaigns through his brilliant plans. In the north, he was superior to Sima Yi on all accounts (anyone is welcome to contest this :wink: ). Sima Yi never outwitted him in battle.
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Unread postby Jiangji » Thu Aug 12, 2004 12:12 am

Rommel wrote:Wooden Ox? Did anybody after three kingdoms use it ever? Or was it too complicated to made so nobody knew how to make it except ZGL? ?


Sima yi tries to build it but have a problem in using it. Again, wooden ox was only used during the northen campaign by the shu army. Only a few wei general involved in defending against the shu army actually know it exists. I doubt cao Rui know this new invention at all. After wu fall, the jin carry out massive disarmament and no longer need it. I also suspect the technology to build it might have be loss when the shu kingdom fall.

Rommel wrote:What policy did ZGL have to improve Shu's economic? Was Shu weak economically under Liu Zhang? ?


It did mention in the novel that zhuge liang carry out reform in Agriculture and others. If Liu zhang is that capable, he would not have request help from cao cao and liu bei at the first place to defend against zhang lu. Zhang lu only have hangzhong while liu zhang have the Yizhou. Still, its army are still too weak to defend against zhang lu army.

Rommel wrote: How did ZGL help Liu Bei to plot against Liu Zhang to take Yizhou? Without victory of Chibi, which was conducted by Zhou Yu how could ZGL get away from Cao Cao's love chase? ZGL helped Liu Bei to take Jingzhou from who? How did he do that?


In the novel, zhuge liang have to go to Yizhou to help liu bei after the death of pang tong. If you read the novel, you will know that zhuge liang should be given a big credit for helping liu bei to gain jingzhou and Yizhou. I do believe zhuge liang have ways to defeat cao cao army.
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Thu Aug 12, 2004 2:13 am

Rommel wrote:Wooden Ox? Did anybody after three kingdoms use it ever? Or was it too complicated to made so nobody knew how to make it except ZGL? What policy did ZGL have to improve Shu's economic? Was Shu weak economically under Liu Zhang? How did ZGL help Liu Bei to plot against Liu Zhang to take Yizhou? Without victory of Chibi, which was conducted by Zhou Yu how could ZGL get away from Cao Cao's love chase? ZGL helped Liu Bei to take Jingzhou from who? How did he do that?


Oh come one.
1)Yeah,you've probably seen them.The wooden ox is considered by many to be the precursor or even actually the first form of wheelbarrow.
2)The idea of military colonies was Zhuge's as was the integration of Mang territory that made Shu prosperous.
3)Shu was weak under Liu Zhang.Even Zhang himself admits it.
4)Considering the whole idea of taking Yizhou was Zhuge's I figure he might deserve a little credit.
5)Chi Bi wasn't conducted by Zhou Yu.Don't be fooled.In history Zhou Yu isn't as big a player as he thinks and novelwise he was useless with Kongming.
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Unread postby FengChu » Thu Aug 12, 2004 2:48 am

Zhuge Liang was a grand strategist who was of a much higher calibur than Zhou Yu. His inventions include:

The "Wooden Bulls" and "Gliding Horses" - Used to transport grain, similar axle configuration and gear logistics as some later used steam engines, extremely advanced for its time.

Chinese Arbalest - Shot ten 8-inch arrows at a time; quick reload, easy to assemble and disengage. Can be compared to the weapon used by Cho Ku Nu archers in Microsoft's Age of Kings game. These plans were somehow stolen/acquired by Deng Ai who used them later against Zhuge Liang's protege Jiang Wei.

Crusade Map - A special type of battlefield presentation that worked much better than the type of map they were using then. There should be pictures of these somewhere on this website :roll:

Military Farms - Though not the first person to employ these, they were revamped and a new codex was drawn up by Zhuge Liang, giving 1/3 of the harvest to the soldiers, and 2/3 of the harvest to the farmers. They were also extensively used by Jiang Wei.

Air Pressure Lamp (Not confirmed) - A lamp that rose and fell with the changing of the winds and the air pressure, said to be a scouting mechanism, however, this has not yet to be confirmed.

Rapid-Firing Catapult - A catapult that used a firing mechanism similar to that of a ballista, 'nuff said.

All in all, Zhuge Kongming contributed over 100 creations in civil and criminal administration, and minor inventions such as the "Fire Stick" (Rough translation), variations of the Fire Galley, etc... He also excelled in areas of divination, acupunture, and other fields.
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Unread postby PrimeMinister Bu Zhi » Thu Aug 12, 2004 4:42 am

Failure in all his northen campaign should not be used as the reason. The wu launched 13 attack on Hebei and all failed. Lun xun also several times beaten by cao Rui. Does this make the wu commanders weak? Zhuge liang uses a lot of tactic and strategy in his northen campaign. Every time sima yi went offensive, he just fall into zhuge liang trap.


No, Wu attacked Hefei 5 times. They actually took land once but quickly lost it to Wei. Similiar to Zhuge's 1st attack. And I disagree that he is weak. He was brilliant and skilled, but he is overrated. He tried to put too much work in his hands, when there were still capable men in Shu who could do these tasks, such as Jiang Wan.
And also, Lu Xun never personally fought Cao Rui and when he lost, he wasn't actually ment to win. It was a feint to make Wei not reinforce Jiangxia, Lu Xun used a false show of power to scare Wei before retreating but he wasn't able to hold them off long enough, Sun Quan was then defeated by the reinforcements at Jiangxia, and Wen Pin's brilliant tactics.

Zhuge liang help liu bei to take jingzhou and Yizhou. Liu bei would long be dead without zhuge liang. Shu would not have existed at all. If Zhou yu is that clever as many have said, he would have take jingzhou first. Personally I don't see zhou yu, lun xun, lu meng and sima yi help their rulers to gain so much territory.


Zhuge Liang at Yizhou, was more of long-term strategy then military action. Fa Zhang and Pang Tong did most of that. And Zhou Yu did take Jing first, though it was different in the novel. Liu Bei took the southern part, while Zhou Yu had the far better and more suitable Nanjun and Jiangxia commanderies. Zhou Yu did help Sun Quan a lot, just like Liang helped Liu Bei. Lu Meng also helped Sun Quan, he gave him all of Jingzhou and he devised long-term strategy and led the battles personally and strategised at them. Lu Xun defeated Liu Bei, the Shanyue and Wei. He was brilliant in terms of domestic affiars and strategy. His advise was usually shown as correct and he had incredible foresight. Sima Yi helped Cao Rui by defeating Zhuge Liang in the last two campaigns. Later, he made the foundation for the Jin dynasty. He killed Cao Shuang and gave the Sima family huge power in Wei. He helped Jin more then Wei though. He helped destroy Wei and at the same time defend it.


One thing I must say about Zhuge Liang. Until after Bei's death, he was just an advisor. People like Pang Tong and Fa Zhang held higher rank then him. Both, by Liu Bei, were probably considered his best, better then Zhuge Liang. Only at Wuzhangyuan did Zhuge Liang prove himself as a military strategist and general.
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Unread postby Rommel » Thu Aug 12, 2004 12:22 pm

Cao Cao was the first one who applied the idea of military colonies. Did Zhuge Liang borrow Cao Cao's idea or have his own kind of military colonies different from Cao Cao's?
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Unread postby FengChu » Thu Aug 12, 2004 12:25 pm

His were a lot more well organized than Cao Cao's, and they were much more efficient as well. I think that in chapter 115 in the book SGYY has Jiang Wei use Kong Ming's style of military farms, but I forget exactly how they explained it :P
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Unread postby Rommel » Thu Aug 12, 2004 1:42 pm

Cao Cao's military colonies greatly relieve his army's provision and laid down the solid foundation of Wei's economic. If ZGL's military colonies were more efficient we would expect better Shu's economic here. In fact Shu's military actions often were restricted by its supply. People argue that it was due to transportation problem but didnt ZGL invent wooden ox & gliding horse to solve the problem? With great loss of Wei's army and supply to Shu, plus effective ZGL's economic plan, Shu should prevail. Why did Shu collapse before Wei after its numerous great victories? Why couldn't ZGL occupy Chang An after numerous great victories? Did ZGL take over any important Wei city at all?
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