Ma Chao and Chang'An.

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Ma Chao and Chang'An.

Unread postby Tarrot » Tue Mar 20, 2007 9:24 am

Not sure if this deserves its own topic or not, but I felt this would be easier to get a response about. Pretty much, I'm curious about Ma Chao's historical invasion of Chang'An, and leading up to the battle of Tong Pass. I'm aware that Tong Pass is to the east of Chang'An, and that Ma Chao would've probably taken Chang'An in the process of advancing on Tong Pass. I'm just wondering how this played out historically. Like, did it occur as it did in the novel, was Chang'An just left undefended, or what? The SGZ bios don't mention much of his taking of Chang'An, so I'm curious as to what happened.
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Unread postby Long » Tue Mar 20, 2007 1:31 pm

The novel attributes the ploy which took Chang An to Pang De, but I don't think it mentions who came up with it historically. my guess would be Han Sui.
And yes, Ma Chao took Chang An historically.
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Unread postby Shadowlink » Tue Mar 20, 2007 1:36 pm

He did? I don't think he took it historically. he was probably no where near there.
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Re: Ma Chao and Chang'An.

Unread postby LiuBeiwasGreat » Tue Mar 20, 2007 1:39 pm

Tarrot wrote:Not sure if this deserves its own topic or not, but I felt this would be easier to get a response about. Pretty much, I'm curious about Ma Chao's historical invasion of Chang'An, and leading up to the battle of Tong Pass. I'm aware that Tong Pass is to the east of Chang'An, and that Ma Chao would've probably taken Chang'An in the process of advancing on Tong Pass. I'm just wondering how this played out historically. Like, did it occur as it did in the novel, was Chang'An just left undefended, or what? The SGZ bios don't mention much of his taking of Chang'An, so I'm curious as to what happened.


Well if we are going by the wording of SGZ it would imply that Ma Chao simply bypassed Chang An and took Chang An. Chang An was probably the most heavily fortified city within the Han empire which would mean two things if he did take it. First it would require some sort of siege as SGZ mentions that troops were being massed in Chang An which was the reason why Ma Chao invaded in the first place. (Ma Chao and the leaders of Guanzhong thought that Cao Cao was going to attack them) If Ma Chao did take the city it makes you wonder why didn't he simply retreat to Chang An after being defeated at Tong gate? Surely it would be the perfect place to retreat to, even with a large army it would be quite difficult for Cao Cao to retake the city from Ma Chao. The fact that nothing is mentioned about Ma Chao taking the city and the fact that he didn't bother retreating to the most defensible location in the entire land implies that he never captured the city.
If this is true one has to ask what the hell were the troops in Chang An doing during this time? Perhaps Ma Chao left a force surrounding the city so the troops couldn't leave?
It is simple to assume that he simply took the city and abandoned it after his defeat which doesn't make much sense. Personally i think that he did take the city and then it was taken back but it was left out in the final history to make Ma Chao look worse and Wei look better. It makes no sense for him to be able to station his troops at Tong while having a huge army at his back.
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Unread postby Long » Tue Mar 20, 2007 1:51 pm

Those implications may be correct, I am of the opinion that Ma Chao took Chang An, out of the troop increase, and out of necessity. He had a force of 100,00 and to march all the way to Tong from An Ding whilst bypassing Chang An would be insane. That would put enemies on both sides of you.

I believe that Ma Chao did in fact take Chang An, but moved the bulk of his force to Tong pass for his showdown with Cao Cao. After his routing at Tong pass, he probably had insufficient numbers to effectively defend Chang An, and he knew that his escape would have a better chance if Cao Cao had to spend time reorganizing Chang An. I too believe that it was not included to make Ma Chao look inferior.
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Tue Mar 20, 2007 3:02 pm

Ma Chao may have been worried by time and while leaving an army to hold the troops at Chang An, gone to Tong Gate to try and smash Cao Cao's army, if he could do that then he could concentrate on getting the region under his control and then Chang An. Or he didn't have the equipment and tried to rely on what he knew best, cavalry warfare

Chen Shou did leave hints about things that the Jin goverment might not like mentioned, it is suprising that he hasn't if Ma Chao took Chang An. A minor bio with a mention of the shock that would have been cuased in Chang An fell, that sort of thing
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Unread postby Long » Tue Mar 20, 2007 9:30 pm

Does anyone know if Chen Shou was forced into taking a Wei bias perhaps? Even though it was during the time of the Jin dyanasty who threw down Wei. If that's the case then clearly Ma Chao could have been dumbed up due to his intense hatred and unusual success against Cao Cao.
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Unread postby FuguNabe » Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:12 pm

Long wrote:Does anyone know if Chen Shou was forced into taking a Wei bias perhaps? Even though it was during the time of the Jin dyanasty who threw down Wei. If that's the case then clearly Ma Chao could have been dumbed up due to his intense hatred and unusual success against Cao Cao.


Jin must recognise the Wei as a dynasty and tribute it's greatness and legitamacy over Shu-Han and Wu. Jin afterall did supplanted Wei. It's very likely that SGZ being recorded during the Jin dysnasty will discredit or leave out mentions on certain events that may discredit Wei and it's power controlling the northern heartland. Considering Chang An's importance as a city it's very likely indeed. SGZ is like a puzzle where you have to read several bio to clue in on certain events and how it may or not have happened.
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Unread postby Long » Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:16 pm

Interesting considering that Wu lasted the longest of the three kingdoms. Supposing that Jin did somehow look to Wei as a father of sorts, it would be very possible that certain individuals were slandered in order to protect father's majesty.

The shame associated with losing one of the capital cities would be great, even if it were later reclaimed I would think, and since history favors the victors...
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Wed Mar 21, 2007 7:48 am

Why wouldn't Wu's SGZ make mention of it or any of Pei's annotations? Chen Shou did a remarkble unbiased job, if he couldn'tput something bad in one bio (like Cao Ren's defeats), you can find it anothr
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