Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Join the Romance of the Three Kingdoms discussion with our resident Scholars. Topics relating to the novel and history are both welcome. Don't forget to check the Forum Rules before posting.
Kongming’s Archives: Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms Officer Biographies
Three Kingdoms Officer Encyclopedia
Scholars of Shen Zhou Search Tool

who is better lu xun or zhuge liang

lu xun
9
16%
zhuge liang
29
53%
sima yi
17
31%
 
Total votes : 55

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Zhao Yun '87 » Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:19 pm

There's a couple things I would add or make changes too from how I read them.

1st NC: While leading the army himself they actually took quite a lot of land. Zhao Yun wasn't expected to win.

2nd NC: Two battles large enough and important enough to be recorded. Wins one loses one but is unsuccessful in the campaign (though there is definitely an argument to be made that this is only considered a campaign because the others are. It's really more of a single battle and the aftermath of it).

3rd NC: Not sure if there is a recorded battle. There are soooo many more battles that occur throughout history than what he have actually recorded and most of them are because there are larger battles to write about or were small enough that the author can't find info enough. That's actually just a side point I wanted to make, there were battles in the 3rd, not directly under his control though. They were sieges conducted by Chen Shi.

4th & 5th: nothing to comment

Overall, I guess I really have a problem with people using the term battles and not major battles. The idea that anyone with any kind of length in their military career participated in only 2 battles is frankly preposterous.

Also that the Northern Campaigns are usually viewed as such failures when I really don't see it. I guess if you're looking at it broadly they are,- did they accomplish their goal?- but what happened within them really isn't that bad for him. I guess it's a failure to be able to seal the deal with him.
The problem was I was on fire.
Zhao Yun '87
Master
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Wed Oct 26, 2005 3:22 am
Location: Nanjing

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:47 pm

1) I don't think Yun was expected to lose either though. They also lost the lands once Liang retreated I believe?

2) If I was going to say "this one wasn't really a camapign", it would probably be camapign three. Yet oddly enough, that was his 100% successful one. The 2nd NC was a hit and hope camapign that got stuffed as soon as they were forced to try to take a well led fort in a very short space of time.

3) Fair enough. I would assume there were victories over some local defence forces. Also on the Chen Shi thing, we are crediting/blaming Liang for battles which were generally led by his subordinates anyway.

white-tiger said won two battles rather then participated in. :P

Also that the Northern Campaigns are usually viewed as such failures when I really don't see it. I guess if you're looking at it broadly they are,- did they accomplish their goal?- but what happened within them really isn't that bad for him. I guess it's a failure to be able to seal the deal with him.


mmmmmmm.

A few years ago, I would have agreed but think the scales have tipped more kindly towards Liang's record. I think the attitude now is... I don't quite know how to describe it. Respectable failure? Did well under the circumstances? A well balanced policy that, bar first two NC's from an inexperienced commander, were well delivered?
User avatar
Dong Zhou
A-Dou
A-Dou
 
Posts: 16980
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2005 12:32 pm
Location: "Now we must die. May Your Majesty maintain yourself"

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Shen Ai » Sat Feb 25, 2012 6:22 pm

I would choose Zhuge Liang to be my Prime Minister or chief adviser of the three, and his military plans were decent, but he just constantly attacked. Great as he was, being too aggressive at times can be a major disaster. He was better in other fields, such as inventing and governing political affairs and matters of state outside of the military field. That is his greatest strength.

Lu Xun I would choose if i had to choose one of them as a military commander. More impressive than SIma Yi and he just seem better prepared than Zhuge Liang.

Sima Yi... I don't think much of his military talent. He was a decent general, but not extraordinary. A clever and able man but not the kind of guy I would want to give too much power too.
I've a brave warrior in my army. Shen Ai is his name, and he can slay this Hua Xiong.

Wei has no more famous commanders, Shen Ai takes lead of the vanguard!

Even a commoner on the street knows what Shen Ai is thinking!
User avatar
Shen Ai
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1903
Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2011 11:21 pm
Location: That Place You've Been Dreaming Of

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:43 am

Not sure Zhuge Liang was overly attacking, I feel he got the right balance between civil affairs and trying to nibble away at Wei.
User avatar
Dong Zhou
A-Dou
A-Dou
 
Posts: 16980
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2005 12:32 pm
Location: "Now we must die. May Your Majesty maintain yourself"

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Zhao Yun '87 » Sun Feb 26, 2012 2:58 pm

1) they did lose the lands, yes. There was a discussion awhile back about if Zhao Yun was sposed to be a distraction not expected to win or not. I'm not sure if there

2) I can believe it was meant to be a campaign, and can even understand those who do call it one, I just think there's room to not call it one as well.

Yeah, I read that wrong, my bad, haha.

That's interesting. I can see that too. Last year or maybe 2 ago I remember discussions just filled with ZGL hate. Now that I think about it though, you're right. It's definitely lessened.

Also, I agree that he wasn't overly aggressive. I think there was 6 years between Liu Bei's death and the first northern campaign.
The problem was I was on fire.
Zhao Yun '87
Master
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Wed Oct 26, 2005 3:22 am
Location: Nanjing

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Shen Ai » Sun Feb 26, 2012 4:05 pm

Well after Liu Bei's death, you would expect Shu to take some time to remain peaceful. A new leader and a young one at that would take a little time to adjust to. Cao Pi was still alive and I don't think Zhuge Liang ever waged war on him. After his death, he was startled that Wei was held together so well, thanks to the work of the regents and Cao Rui's own special talents.

Well, maybe he wasn't overly aggressive and his victories are put in light, but most of the time he was retreating and always being forced back. Most of his wins were all ambushes by his retreating forces against a detachment from the enemy. People like Li Yan took advantage of his absence, though to be fair to Zhuge Liang, he did deal with him pretty fast.
I've a brave warrior in my army. Shen Ai is his name, and he can slay this Hua Xiong.

Wei has no more famous commanders, Shen Ai takes lead of the vanguard!

Even a commoner on the street knows what Shen Ai is thinking!
User avatar
Shen Ai
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1903
Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2011 11:21 pm
Location: That Place You've Been Dreaming Of

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Crazedmongoose » Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:36 am

It's interesting to track this forum's general attitudes. Because up until a few years ago this forum dogmatically stuck to the novel/cultural truths, which lead to a massive pro-Shu bias. Then the history hard-heads came in as opinion leaders who knew their stuff, and this lead to a huuuuge surge in anti-Shu revisionism.

Really at the end of the day there's no need for either. True, Shu was the weakest kingdom of the three, true, none of the top tier Shu protagonists were as good as the cultural depictions describes, but they did survive in a time when anything less than an exceptional faction was utterly destroyed, and that takes a good degree of capability.

I'd probably take Zhuge Liang as my chief advisor, over Lu Xun (and far, far over Sima Yi).
User avatar
Crazedmongoose
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1509
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 3:10 am
Location: Sydney, Aus

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Shen Ai » Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:50 pm

Crazedmongoose wrote:It's interesting to track this forum's general attitudes. Because up until a few years ago this forum dogmatically stuck to the novel/cultural truths, which lead to a massive pro-Shu bias. Then the history hard-heads came in as opinion leaders who knew their stuff, and this lead to a huuuuge surge in anti-Shu revisionism.

Really at the end of the day there's no need for either. True, Shu was the weakest kingdom of the three, true, none of the top tier Shu protagonists were as good as the cultural depictions describes, but they did survive in a time when anything less than an exceptional faction was utterly destroyed, and that takes a good degree of capability.

I'd probably take Zhuge Liang as my chief advisor, over Lu Xun (and far, far over Sima Yi).


No doubt, Shu had the luck and the charm of the Gods at times. Liu Bei was a walking pile of charisma with notable and respectable military talent. Their tale is an inspiring one. Zhuge Liang isn't the God-like genius he is in the novel but he was probably the greatest multi-tasker of the era, along with Cao Cao. Their generals all have skill and bravery, not as high as what the novel gave them, but still enough to ensure quite a following of fans.

For me, Wei was always my favourite, and I like to voice Wei's talent above that of others.

In this case however, Zhuge Liang is easily the best choice. I actually find Sima Yi to be overrated as a general and adviser.
I've a brave warrior in my army. Shen Ai is his name, and he can slay this Hua Xiong.

Wei has no more famous commanders, Shen Ai takes lead of the vanguard!

Even a commoner on the street knows what Shen Ai is thinking!
User avatar
Shen Ai
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1903
Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2011 11:21 pm
Location: That Place You've Been Dreaming Of

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Crazedmongoose » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:35 am

Yeah, the fault of this thread is really that Sima Yi can't be considered amongst the best Wei had to offer in any sense.

But then if you're asking me to pick between Zhuge Liang and Xun Yu, then I would hesitate.
User avatar
Crazedmongoose
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1509
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 3:10 am
Location: Sydney, Aus

Re: Who Was Best: Zhuge Liang, Lu Xun, or Sima Yi?

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:00 pm

Zhao Yun '87 wrote:
That's interesting. I can see that too. Last year or maybe 2 ago I remember discussions just filled with ZGL hate. Now that I think about it though, you're right. It's definitely lessened.


Crazedmongoose wrote:It's interesting to track this forum's general attitudes. Because up until a few years ago this forum dogmatically stuck to the novel/cultural truths, which lead to a massive pro-Shu bias. Then the history hard-heads came in as opinion leaders who knew their stuff, and this lead to a huuuuge surge in anti-Shu revisionism.

Really at the end of the day there's no need for either. True, Shu was the weakest kingdom of the three, true, none of the top tier Shu protagonists were as good as the cultural depictions describes, but they did survive in a time when anything less than an exceptional faction was utterly destroyed, and that takes a good degree of capability.



I, of course, was always fair to Zhuge Liang :P

It is human nature. When historians start revising the reputation of someone, be it saint or sinner/genius or great idiot, then they tend to go a bit too far for awhile. Well I say a bit, sometimes ignoring or slandering all evidence. Suddenly every source that declares so and so was great/evil comes under attack, motives are suddenly redrawn and the criticisms of other people/works can be very very harsh. Now of course, a biographer can usually be expected to give the benefit of the doubt to the subject but revisionism and the counter arguments take this a lot further. Ordinary people do it too. David Tennant tended to be near the top of people's favourite Doctor Who's and was a near icon but now, it would be a struggle to find anyone who didn't think his Doctor was boring. Or watch the press hype up a young British footballer and how some people then go out of their way to declare how much that player sucks at every given opportunity, then see the press turn on that player later on.

Most of us came here due to the novel and then learnt more about history from the words of those who knew the history better, then learn more ourselves as more and more English sources became available. Naturally, there was a backlash against a lot of Shu characters once people worked out 1) the novel hyped them, 2) Shu wasn't made up of living saints. Zhuge Liang, as the walking God-Mode but not of the top class military mind, was one of those that had the furthest to fall and would take the longest to recover. Partly got blamed for novel stuff (Wei Yan, Jiang Wei), didn't have spectacular victories to point to and it took awhile to really see the NC's as they were, away from the novel.
User avatar
Dong Zhou
A-Dou
A-Dou
 
Posts: 16980
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2005 12:32 pm
Location: "Now we must die. May Your Majesty maintain yourself"

PreviousNext

Return to Sanguo Yanyi Symposium

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests

Copyright © 2002–2008 Kongming’s Archives. All Rights Reserved