Cao Pi compared to Cao Zhi

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Cao Pi compared to Cao Zhi

Unread postby grand master of san guo » Sun Apr 27, 2003 12:47 am

which one u think should be the empoer of wei? i think cao pi is because hes know for good at milltary. and zhi just a poem writter thats all he is.
" cao cao has more than million army, but there is nothing to fear about." we must ally. so that we can bring peace to the world!!
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Unread postby Jiang Zhi » Sun Apr 27, 2003 2:42 pm

I say Cao Zhi :) he's smarter civilly too......Cao Pi is a tyrant while Cao Zhi would be a righteous ruler........
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Unread postby TheGreatNads » Sun Apr 27, 2003 6:02 pm

I don't see how Cao Pi wasn't capable. The only thing I don't like about him is how he treated his officers. But Cao Zhi was a drunk who neglected his responsibilities. And since Cao Pi was the oldest, I don't see why he shouldn't be the emperor.
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Re: cao pi compare to cao zhi

Unread postby jiuwan » Sun Apr 27, 2003 6:04 pm

grand master of san guo wrote:which one u think should be the empoer of wei? i think cao pi is because hes know for good at milltary. and zhi just a poem writter thats all he is.


I don't think it's fair to paint Cao Zhi as "just a poem writter thats all he is." If you've read his bio, it shows that he had a lot of potential. But fate never smiled upon Cao Zhi's way so he was never given any opportunities to show what he could do. Cao Cao himself believed that Cao Zhi had a lot of promise and potential. And Cao Cao who himself was highly skilled at picking talent himself, couddn't be wrong when it comes to his son can he? :lol:
In fact Cao Cao would have made Cao Zhi his heir apparent instead of Cao Pi but Cao Zhi had one fault - drinking. Cao Pi by comparison was a very shrewd, calculating and careful man. He was able to get the court's support and Cao Cao eventually gave in and made Cao Pi the heir instead.
Under Cao Pi and Cao Rui's rule, Cao Zhi never had the chance to exhibit his skills. This was made very apparent in the poems he wrote. In his depression he succumbed to illness and died at the young age of 40 in the year of 232A.D.

Here's some of his poems that he wrote:
煮豆燃豆基, 豆在釜中泣. 本是同根生, 相煎何太急!
Translation by me:
<i>They were boiling beans on a beanstalk fire,
Came a plaintive cry from the pot.
"Since we sprang from the selfsame root,
Oh why so eager to kill me with anger hot?"</i>
This was written in analogy to the cruel treatment he received from his brother Cao Pi.

Passage from "Dew upon grass" (translated by Lady Wu):
Man's lifetime in this world goes by
As quickly as the wind upon the dust.
Would I be able to employ my talents
To exert myself in the service
Of the enlightened ruler!

Passage from "The White Horse" (translated by Lady Wu):
I give myself up, the nation's honor to defend,
Death, I view lightly, as homecoming at the end.

This poem, which summarizes his miseries was written in 229AD, near the end of his life:
"Passage of Sigh" (translated by Lady Wu)
Alas! This rolling tumbleweed
Living alone in this world – Oh why? Oh why?
Long have I left my roots and gone
Resting never, day nor night
From east to west, from south to north.
A whirlwind rises, blowing me
into the clouds, where I thought
was the ends of Heaven
But all of a sudden –
I fall
deep into an abyss.
I am carried out by a rapid gust.
If only it were to take me back to the fields!
Southwards I am bound, but it takes me north;
Supposing it blows to the east, it turns to the west.
Straying, drifting, with nothing to rely on –
"Surely I expire," I say, but my life goes on
To wander through the hills and plains
Turning, tumbling, with no place to stay –
Who would understand my agony, I pray?
May I be grass growing in a forest
To burn when autumn flames rage fiercest!
Destroyed by fire – know I naught of the pain?
I'd rather that, but with my roots remain.
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Re: cao pi compare to cao zhi

Unread postby TheGreatNads » Sun Apr 27, 2003 6:16 pm

jiuwan wrote:I don't think it's fair to paint Cao Zhi as "just a poem writter thats all he is." If you've read his bio, it shows that he had a lot of potential. But fate never smiled upon Cao Zhi's way so he was never given any opportunities to show what he could do.


I disagree. He was given opportunities by Cao Cao, but Cao Zhi got drunk and never suceeded. Also, I don't think potential proves much.

jiuwan wrote:Cao Cao himself believed that Cao Zhi had a lot of promise and potential. And Cao Cao who himself was highly skilled at picking talent himself, couddn't be wrong when it comes to his son can he? :lol:


I think people overate Cao Cao's ability to judge talent. Look at all the trust he put on Xiahou Dun, Xiahou Yuan, and Yu Jin.
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Re: cao pi compare to cao zhi

Unread postby jiuwan » Sun Apr 27, 2003 6:50 pm

TheGreatNads wrote:I disagree. He was given opportunities by Cao Cao, but Cao Zhi got drunk and never suceeded. Also, I don't think potential proves much.


Yes he was given opportunites by Cao Cao, but in his careless youth his drunkenness got into the way. After the death of Cao Cao, he still wanted to prove his worth for his country and for his family. If I remember correctly, there was no instances after the death of Cao Cao where his drinking got into the way of him trying to prove himself. Under the rule of Cao Pi and Cao Rui he wanted to prove his worth, but wasn't given the chance. This was the period I wanted to refer to. This was the point I was trying to make in my last post. Sorry if it come out wrong. (I need to sign up for some <b>E</b>nglish as a <b>S</b>econd <b>L</b>anguage classes :lol: ).
As for the potential part. It can or can not mean a lot. Depends of perspectives.

TheGreatNads wrote:I think people overate Cao Cao's ability to judge talent. Look at all the trust he put on Xiahou Dun, Xiahou Yuan, and Yu Jin.

Again sorry, I was trying to make a sarcastic remark on that point that's why I put in the laughing emoticon. Guess it came out wrong (ESL, here I come!) Cao Cao did have some extent in picking out good talent, just look at all the officers Wei had in his time. But he did have some flaws too as you've pointed out.
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Re: cao pi compare to cao zhi

Unread postby TheGreatNads » Sun Apr 27, 2003 7:07 pm

jiuwan wrote:Yes he was given opportunites by Cao Cao, but in his careless youth his drunkenness got into the way. After the death of Cao Cao, he still wanted to prove his worth for his country and for his family. If I remember correctly, there was no instances after the death of Cao Cao where his drinking got into the way of him trying to prove himself. Under the rule of Cao Pi and Cao Rui he wanted to prove his worth, but wasn't given the chance. This was the period I wanted to refer to. This was the point I was trying to make in my last post. Sorry if it come out wrong. (I need to sign up for some <b>E</b>nglish as a <b>S</b>econd <b>L</b>anguage classes :lol: ).
As for the potential part. It can or can not mean a lot. Depends of perspectives.


It is true that there were no instances after Cao Cao's death that he proved to be incapable. But I don't believe there were any that proved him capable either. What I was trying to say was that I don't blame Cao Pi for not wanting to use him, considering his past failures.

jiuwan wrote:Again sorry, I was trying to make a sarcastic remark on that point that's why I put in the laughing emoticon. Guess it came out wrong (ESL, here I come!) Cao Cao did have some extent in picking out good talent, just look at all the officers Wei had in his time. But he did have some flaws too as you've pointed out.


Oh ok. I'll agree then.
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Unread postby Kingdom of Cheng » Sun Apr 27, 2003 11:42 pm

There both equal. I think Cao Hong should be the king of Wei if Cao Cao died
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Unread postby TheGreatNads » Sun Apr 27, 2003 11:56 pm

Cao Hong wrote:There both equal. I think Cao Hong should be the king of Wei if Cao Cao died


Why? Cao Hong was a great general, but not fit to be a ruler.
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Re: cao pi compare to cao zhi

Unread postby jiuwan » Mon Apr 28, 2003 12:19 am

TheGreatNads wrote:What I was trying to say was that I don't blame Cao Pi for not wanting to use him, considering his past failures.

That may be true. Cao Pi didn't want to use Cao Zhi based on his past failures when he was younger. But that still leaves the question of the cruel treament of his younger brother Cao Zhi. Being family members what excuses can Cao Pi have for treating his brother so cruelly? After the short reign of Cao Pi, the same treatment was continued by Cao Rui. What excuses did Cao Rui have as well? Cao Zhi was Rui's uncle by blood. There was no need for either Wei emperors to treat their family members so badly.

Excerpts from Cao Zhi's bio:
<i>In that same year, Cao Cao passed away and Cao Pi declared himself emperor. Among the first thing he did was order the execution of two of Cao Zhi's very close friends, Ding Yi (丁儀) and Ding Yi (丁翼)</i>
Where is the justification for ordering the execution of Cao Zhi's two closest friends?

<i>Cao Zhi and the other lords were sent back to their fiefs and were
prohibited from being involved in the affairs of the government. Furthermore, imperial fief
surveyors were assigned to keep surveillance on all the enfeoffed relatives of the emperor.</i>
An example of Cao Zhi and other relatives (Cao Cad had 25 sons in total, after which Cao Pi ascended the throne), none were allowed to participate in government affairs.

When Cao Zhi was demoted to Lord of An Xiang he wrote his "Poem formed from seven steps" (in which I already wrote in my first post). The allusions in the poem reflected his cruel treatment from his brother Cao Pi. In the very same year, Cao Zhi was moved to become the Lord of Yin Cheng. A year after that, Cao Zhi was promoted back to the rank of a Prince. The very next year, Cao Zhi was moved yet again, this time to Yong Qui.

<i>That year (AD 224), Cao Pi granted audience to all the princes, and Cao Zhi and his brothers paid homage to the emperor in the Capital city. This was the first time Cao Zhi met with his brothers in a long while, as Cao Pi did not allow the fiefdoms to communicate with each other at all. Unfortunately, Cao Zhang, Cao Zhi's brother of the same mother, died suddenly while in the capital. And then, as soon as the ceremonies were over, the princes were ordered to go directly back to their enfeoffments.
Cao Zhi and his brother Cao Biao, Prince of Baima, both had to take the road eastwards, however, the fief surveyors did not allow them to go together. Out of anguish, Cao Zhi wrote what is probably his most well-respected work – "To Biao, the Prince of Baima", a sorrowful seven-section poem expressing his frustration and distress at being forced to be separated from his brothers.</i>

That passage should make things clear on how Cao Zhi and his brothers were treated by Cao Pi. A note on Cao Zhang's sudden death, it has been said that he was poisoned by Cao Pi. But the myth of this is yet to be proven, so it will stay a myth and leave his death as a sudden death.

<i>Things did not get much better for Cao Zhi when Cao Pi died the next year and Cao Rui became emperor. Immediately, Cao Zhi was moved to Junyi, and then the next year he was moved back to Yongqiu. </i>
The start of Cao Rui's reign.

<i>In the third year of Taihe (AD 229), Cao Zhi was moved again, this time to Dong'e. </i>

<i>Despite his title as Prince, Cao Zhi did not have a good life. The laws of the time were harsh upon the princes – incompetent rascals were given as servants and no more than 200 old and feeble soldiers were assigned to be guards. Cao Zhi received half of that, on the account of his earlier faults. </i>
In the course of about 11 years, he never had the chance to establish a permanent residence, have contact with his kinsmen, nor the chance to prove his worth. All this cause him grief and depression which was evident in most of his poems. One of his poems - Luo Shen Fu - was originally written on the account of Zhen Ji's death (Lady Zhen or Empress Zhen, Cao Pi's first wife) in which Cao Pi later changed the title to Luo Shen Fu so that the poem would be talking about Luo Shen (Goddess of River Luo) instead of his dead wife. Sadly Cao Zhi succumbed to illness (from his depression) and died at the young age of 40 in the year 232AD
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