Zhuge Liang's Relationship With Guan Yu

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Zhuge Liang's Relationship With Guan Yu

Unread postby Mikhail » Sat Mar 08, 2008 7:07 am

I was just watching the RotK tv series and for the most part, its followed the book and it was a good way to remind me of the occurrences that took place in the story.

I've just finished watching the death of Cao Cao and I've started thinking of a possibility that Zhuge wasn't too fond of Guan Yu. I know Zhuge has created a lot of schemes to rouse the officers of Shu but for some reason, this felt different.

Exhibit 1:
- Zhuge, knowing full well of Guan Yu's noble personality, places him as the last barrier to Cao Cao's freedom after the battle of Chi Bi. Then proceeds to reproach him afterwards. (Of course, Zhuge needed Guan to let Cao go for the sake of the 3K strategy).

Exhibit 2:
- Zhuge giving Guan Yu the advice of resisting Cao Cao while allying with Sun Quan. After doing so, he provides a riff between Guan Yu and Sun Quan by making sure that Yu's arrogance prevents the transfer of the 3 Jing districts to Zhuge Jin.

Exhibit 3:
- Not allowing Guan Yu to 'visit' Shu to test his strength against Ma Chao. (Of course he did have an extremely valid reason to keep Guan Yu there, but he could have easily sent some reinforcements and/or a replacement since during the capture of Cheng Du, Liu Bei's forces acquired many capable generals. I mean, Ma Chao and to some extent, Wei Yan didn't do anything at Han Zhong. Zhang Fei was not even there at all!)

Exhibit 4:
- Telling Guan Yu to attack Fancheng. Simple, without the seige, Guan Yu could have lived longer. Sure Zhuge was outsmarted and outmaneuvered that he couldn't have forseen that consequences of that order (such as the Mi Fang/Fu Shi Ren/Liu Feng debacle) but from what I remember, that attack was only used as a diversionary tactic to draw Cao Cao away from Han Zhong, even though Shu's best generals were in that area)

------------------

Well there's my "proof". Well, its not really proof, as it is just some minor observations that I thought of that could show that Zhuge was not Guan Yu's biggest fan (no pun intended). I don't really remember the other times that Guan Yu and Zhuge Liang were together because that tv series is very lengthy, but I tried to provide some examples.

What is everyone's opinion about this? Also, feel free to give examples and counter-examples.
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sat Mar 08, 2008 8:16 am

1) He also knew military law had to be obeyed to some extent and that Liu Bei would ensure no death so he used up Guan's debt when it best suited Liu Bei

2) That was just stupid

3) Zhang Fei defeating Zhang He? The worst thing that he could do was allow two important generals to leave their important posts and begin killing each other, it was best to calm him down.

4) again, Zhuge Liang was being stupid :wink:
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Unread postby Mikhail » Sat Mar 08, 2008 2:42 pm

Dong Zhou wrote:3) Zhang Fei defeating Zhang He? The worst thing that he could do was allow two important generals to leave their important posts and begin killing each other, it was best to calm him down.


Oops, I forgot that one. But still, there was some time after the defeat of Zhang He and the capture of Han Zhong, and there was even time after that in which reinforcements could be sent.

Edit: Im sure it would have been a friendly spar. Though there is still some danger involved, the intent to kill wouldn't have been there.
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Unread postby Shadowlink » Sat Mar 08, 2008 6:03 pm

Sure Zhuge was outsmarted
lol... I never realize it was some of his fault in the novel.
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Unread postby Mikhail » Sun Mar 09, 2008 2:13 am

Shadowlink wrote:
Sure Zhuge was outsmarted
lol... I never realize it was some of his fault in the novel.


Hm... forgive me if I am mistaken but is there a bit of sarcasm in that comment?
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sun Mar 09, 2008 8:10 am

Corgan wrote:
Oops, I forgot that one. But still, there was some time after the defeat of Zhang He and the capture of Han Zhong, and there was even time after that in which reinforcements could be sent.

Edit: Im sure it would have been a friendly spar. Though there is still some danger involved, the intent to kill wouldn't have been there.


time to strip Jing of one of your most famed officers (and Guan Yu was quite a good general in the novel as well as a great warrior) and create the confusion of a temporary administration while the two have an ego contest? Even in friendly jousts in the middleages, people died, one stray blow could kill either warrior.

Then the Qiang could invade Shu while Jing comes under attack
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Unread postby Zhilong » Sun Mar 09, 2008 3:14 pm

Dong Zhou wrote:1) He also knew military law had to be obeyed to some extent and that Liu Bei would ensure no death so he used up Guan's debt when it best suited Liu Bei



Not only that, in the novel Guan Yu was very arrogant and would not ready to submit to Zhuge Liang's authority. After such a humbling incident Guan Yu was ready to accept Zhuge Liang's sudden rise in Liu Bei's camp.

ZL's own reasons aside, this is an act which could have saved Guan Yu in the future from putting his personal honour above his professional duty towards Cao Cao. So you could also say ZL was very considerate to do this for Guan Yu.

Exhibit 3:
- Not allowing Guan Yu to 'visit' Shu to test his strength against Ma Chao. (Of course he did have an extremely valid reason to keep Guan Yu there, but he could have easily sent some reinforcements and/or a replacement since during the capture of Cheng Du, Liu Bei's forces acquired many capable generals. I mean, Ma Chao and to some extent, Wei Yan didn't do anything at Han Zhong. Zhang Fei was not even there at all!)


ZL would have been a very poor advisor for Liu Bei if he encourages and facilitates playground behaviour between generals. What you have suggested is extremely poor personnel management and in any respectable company you would be fired for doing such a thing.
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Unread postby Mikhail » Sun Mar 09, 2008 6:28 pm

Dong Zhou wrote:
Corgan wrote:
Oops, I forgot that one. But still, there was some time after the defeat of Zhang He and the capture of Han Zhong, and there was even time after that in which reinforcements could be sent.

Edit: Im sure it would have been a friendly spar. Though there is still some danger involved, the intent to kill wouldn't have been there.


time to strip Jing of one of your most famed officers (and Guan Yu was quite a good general in the novel as well as a great warrior) and create the confusion of a temporary administration while the two have an ego contest? Even in friendly jousts in the middleages, people died, one stray blow could kill either warrior.

Then the Qiang could invade Shu while Jing comes under attack


Correct me if im wrong, as I will concede that you know about this than I do, but doesn't the Qiang live in the northwest of China? And during the letter, wasn't Han Zhong still in Wei possession? So wouldn't it not matter to Shu?

Also, whats the difference between sending Guan Yu to take Fan and letting Guan Yu go to Cheng Du? In one scenario, Jing wouldn't be defenseless and there would be hightened security in and around the area. Wu wouldn't be able to do their sneak attack. Wu still wouldn't have attacked because they didn't have reassurance from Cao Cao that he wouldn't attack Wu territory since he was still busy with defending Han Zhong.

Though I could be merely speculating here since I am going by the events occurring around the area, but could there be some truth to my statements?


Plus, going by the novel, I remember that they compared Guan Yu and Zhang Fei saying that Zhang Fei might be equal or even better than Guan Yu in terms of prowess. Ma Chao and Zhang Fei couldn't beat each other in 200+ rounds. The result could have probably been similar with Guan Yu.
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Unread postby Mikhail » Sun Mar 09, 2008 6:38 pm

Zhilong wrote:ZL's own reasons aside, this is an act which could have saved Guan Yu in the future from putting his personal honour above his professional duty towards Cao Cao. So you could also say ZL was very considerate to do this for Guan Yu.


I haven't revisited that time in awhile, but didn't Guan Yu tell Cao Cao that the next time would have been different and their scores were settled after letting him free?

Zhilong wrote:ZL would have been a very poor advisor for Liu Bei if he encourages and facilitates playground behaviour between generals. What you have suggested is extremely poor personnel management and in any respectable company you would be fired for doing such a thing.


Really? Do companies not encourage competition between their workers? So when there is a promotion up in the air or a big project that is required, they let their workers just do what they were doing before, or do they encourage their workers to do the best they can, which sometimes leads to many projects competing with each other for the top spot.

Would it be considered playground behavior? Maybe... but when there is progression or fame involved, is it still considered playground behavior?


Just to add: Wasn't there a test of skill during the cermonies that Cao Cao had when Liu Bei and him were still in the Central Plains together (I think it was around the same time Cao Cao hunted with the imperial bow)? I forget, but did they have fighting involved or did they just have archery contests?
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sun Mar 09, 2008 7:34 pm

Archer contest.

The Qiang had raided Yi during the Later Han and Ma Chao was assigned to the border to keep them clear so seems possible that they could attack. When attacking Fan, he was putting Wei under immense pressure (doesn't he also take Xiangyang in the novel?) and Zhuge Liang didn't forsee Wu backstabbing him
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