ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-106)

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BOOK 100

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:44 am


The Third Year of Shengping (The Jiwei Year, 359 AD)


1. In spring, the second month, Murong Jun named his son Murong Hong as Prince of Jibei, and his son Murong Chong as Prince of Zhongshan.


2. Yan killed Duan Qin; his younger brother Duan Si fled.


Duan Qin's surrender to Yan was mentioned in the eighth year of Yonghe (352) in the last book (Book 99).


3. Murong Jun held a banquet with his ministers at Pu Pond. When the subject of Crown Prince Jin of Zhou was brought up, Murong Jun began to weep and said, "He was a rare talent. Since my son Jingxian's (Murong Ye) death, my hair has already turned half-white. What did you fellows make of Jingxian?"


Pu Pond was at Ye.

King Ling of Zhou had a crown prince named Ji Jin, who was very intelligent. However, he died young. The Discourses of the States contains a speech criticizing the stopping up of the Gu and Luo Rivers, and this speech is attributed to Crown Prince Jin. (Speeches of Zhou Part 3, #27) When Crown Prince Jin died, his younger brother Gui took the throne in his place, becoming King Jing of Zhou. After King Jing's death, his sons Chao and Gai fought over the throne, throwing Zhou into chaos.

This is the same Ji Jin who was mentioned earlier as supposedly being immortal, and who ascended to Heaven on the back of a crane.

Yan's original Crown Prince was Murong Ye, styled Jingxian.

The Chief Clerk of the Left of the Minister Over The Masses, Li Ji, said, "When Crown Prince Xianhuai was in the East Palace, I was then the Crown Prince’s Attendant. How could I not have recognized his ambition and endeavor? The Crown Prince had eight great virtues: first, he was filial; second, he was intelligent; third, he was resolute; fourth, he was candid; fifth, he was studious; sixth, he was skilled; seventh, he was modest; eighth, he was diligent."


The "Records of Jin" says, "The Crown Prince's 中庶子 had a similar position as one of the Emperor's Palace Attendants."

Murong Jun said, "It is just as you say. Yet my son is here, so I may die without regret. What do you make of Jingmao (Murong Wei) ?" At that time Murong Wei was also present.


The new Crown Prince was Murong Wei, styled Jingmao.

Li Ji said, "The Crown Prince has his talents as well as his shortcomings. Although he already possesses the eight virtues, yet he has two faults: his indulgence in hunting and in music. These may bring harm."

Murong Jun said to his son, "Heed well Boyang's words and follow his remedies. Such are your orders!" Murong Wei thus disliked Li Ji.


Li Ji's style name was Boyang.

This was why Li Ji later died from worry.


4. Murong Jun was troubled by a dream one night. He saw the former Emperor of Zhao, Shi Hu, who gnawed upon his arm. Upon waking, Murong Jun went to Shi Hu's tomb to exhume his corpse, but could not find his body there, so he offered a reward of a hundred gold for knowledge of where it was. A woman in Ye, Li Tu, said that the corpse was buried beneath Dongming Pavilion.

Although Shi Hu's body was stiff in death, it had not rotted. Murong Jun trampled upon the corpse, shouting at it, "You dead barbarian, how dare you trouble a living Emperor?" He had the corpse beat harshly with whips. He then ordered the body to be thrown into the Zhang River, but the body caught on the abandoned bridge there and would not flow any further. Later (in 370), after Qin had conquered Yan, Fu Jian wished to avenge the wrong done to Shi Hu's body, because Shi Hu had greatly favored his grandfather Fu Hong. Wang Meng had Li Tu put to death, and what remained of Shi Hu's body was reburied.


The Commentary on the Water Classic says, "The Huan River flows northeast, passing south of Ye. In the east, it splits into two rivers, and the northern one flows past Dongming Pavilion." And in another place it says, "The Zhang River flows west past Zimo."

In Zhao's eleventh year of Jianwu (346), Shi Hu had tried to build a floating bridge at Zimo. This was the spot where Murong Jun cast Shi Hu's corpse into the river. The text does not mention this incident any further.

This may have been another attempt at the floating bridge project mention in Book 95, 336.13.


5. Qin's General Who Pacifies Qiang, Gao Li, took over Lüeyang and rebelled. Duke Wei of Yong'an, Fu Hou, campaigned against him, but in the end was defeated and he died.

In summer, the fourth month, the General of Valiant Cavalry Deng Qiang and the Inspector of Qinzhou Dan Tie campaigned against Gao Li and defeated him.


6. The Xiongnu chieftain Liu Xiwuqi passed away. His younger brother Liu Weichen killed his son and took over.

In the fifth month, Fu Jian returned to Hedong; in the sixth month, a general amnesty was declared, and the Qin reign year was changed to Ganlu.


7. The Governor of Liangzhou, Zhang Guan, was paranoid and abusive, using his own personal likes or dislikes to administer rewards or punishments. The Palace Attendant Yin Xun remonstrated with him. Zhang Guan said, "Once a tiger has lived three days, it is able to eat meat, and needs no one to teach it." Thus, no one was close to him.


郇 is pronounced "xun (x-un)".

The General Who Protects The State, Song Hun, was a loyal and outspoken man. Zhang Guan was afraid of him, and wished to kill him and his younger brother Song Cheng. He thus deposed the Prince of Liang, Zhang Xuanjing, and acting in his place, drafted an army of tens of thousands to gather at Guzang. When Song Hun learned of it, he and Song Cheng led the 壯士 Yang He and others, more than forty riders in all, to the southern palaces, and there declared among the camps, "Zhang Guan plots treason; we have orders from the Empress Dowager to punish him." They were able to gather up two thousand men.


According to Wang Yin's "Book of Jin", "Liangzhou City resembled a dragon, so people called it Wolong City ("sleeping dragon"). It was seven li in length from north to south, and two li from east to west. It was originally built by the Xiongnu. Later, the Zhang clan resided there, and they built four more cities, each a thousand paces square, so that the old city became five." And according to the Biography of Zhang Jun in the Book of Jin, Zhang Jun built five palaces south of Guzang; the main palace had four palaces on each side, each of a different color, and he moved between the palaces according to the four seasons. The Zhang clan family members all resided in these southern palaces.

又于姑臧城南築城,起謙光殿,畫以五色,飾以金玉,窮盡珍巧。殿之四面各起一殿,東曰宜陽青殿,以春三月居之,章服器物皆依方色;南曰硃陽赤殿,夏三月居之;西曰政刑白殿,秋三月居之;北曰玄武黑殿,冬三月居之。其傍皆有直省內官寺署,一同方色。及末年,任所遊處,不復依四時而居。(Jinshu 86.35)

[Zhang Jun] also built a city south of Guzang. In the city he built the Qianguang Palace, and painted it five different colors, and decked the halls with gold, jade, and unusual treasures. There were four palaces each built adjacent to this main one. The eastern palace was called the Xuanyang Green Palace, and he lived there during the three months of spring; all the clothing and items in the palace were the same color. The southern palace was the Zhuyang Red Palace, which he lived in for the three summer months. The western palace was the Zhengxing White Palace, and that was his residence for the three autumn months. The northern palace was the Xuanwu Black Palace, and he spent the three winter months there. Each palace had its smaller servants' quarters and temples, all of which shared the same color. When the year ended, everyone would change places, and no one spent the four seasons in the same place.

Zhang Guan led his troops to fight them, and Song Hun attacked and routed them. Zhang Guan's underling Xuan Lu swung his sword at Song Hun, but could not pierce his armor. Song Hun captured him, and the rest of Zhang Guan's forces surrendered. Zhang Guan and his younger brother Zhang Ju both killed themselves, and Song Hun slaughtered the rest of their part of the imperial clan.


Xuan is a surname. The 風俗通 says, "One of the marquisates of the ancients was Xuandu."

臚 is pronounced "lu (l-u)".

Zhang Xuanjing appointed Song Hun as Commissioner Bearing Credentials and Grand General of Agile Cavalry, as well as Commander over all military affairs; he named him as Marquis of Jiuquan, and asked him to take over Zhang Guan's former role of administering the state. Song Hun then asked Zhang Xuanjing to discard the title Prince of Liang and go back to being the Governor of Liangzhou.


Zhang Zuo's first use of the title Prince of Liang was mentioned in the tenth year of Yonghe (354) in Book 99. Zhang Guan's insistence upon Zhang Xuanjing also assuming that title was mentioned earlier in this book, in the eleventh year (355).

Song Hun said to Xuan Lu, "You struck me, but fortunately did me no harm. Now I control the state; do you not fear me?" Xuan Lu replied, "I received Zhang Guan's favor; my only regret is that I did not cut you deeper. What need have I to fear?" Song Hun found this a just remark, a sign of true heart and bravery.


8. The warlord Gao Chang could not hold out against Yan. In autumn, the seventh month, he fled from Baima to Xingyang.


9. Fu Jian returned from Hedong. He appointed the General of Valiant Cavalry Deng Qiang as Palace Assistant Imperial Clerk. In the eighth month, he appointed the Interior Minister of Xianyang, Wang Meng, as Palace Attendant, Prefect of the Palace Secretariat, and acting Intendant of Jingzhao.

The Specially Advanced and Household Counsellor Qiang De, who was the Empress Dowager's younger brother, was an excessive drinker who oppressed the common people, plundering them of their possessions and even children. Wang Meng arrested Qiang De and sent in a memorial informing Fu Jian of the arrest, but before he had received an acknowledgment from the court, he had Qiang De executed in the marketplace. When Fu Jian received Wang Meng's memorial, he sent a swift rider to bring an order of pardon for Qiang De, but the order arrived too late.


Empress Dowager Qiang was the wife of Fu Jiàn.

Kong Anguo remarked, "酗 means to become wild while drinking." Jia Gongyan also remarked, "This character 酗, which is 酒 (wine) with 凶 (wild) beside it, is because people become wild when they drink."

Wang Meng was of one mind with Deng Qiang, hating evil and taking on cases, without taking other considerations into account. Within the span of a few weeks, more than twenty high officials and powerful nobles were executed. The court shook with fear, evildoers held their breath from fright, and things left forgotten by the roadside were not stolen. Fu Jian exclaimed, "Now I know what a land ruled by law is like!"


10. Jin's Administrator of Taishan, Zhuge You, advanced by land and water with twenty thousand men to attack Yan. They passed through Shimen and camped at He Islet. Yan's Prince of Shangyong, Murong Ping, and the Administrator of Changle, Fu Yan, led fifty thousand horse and foot to fight Zhuge You at Dong'a, where Zhuge You was greatly defeated.


11. In winter, the tenth month, Xie Wan was placed in charge of an army, and ordered along with Chi Tan at Gaoping to attack Yan. Xie Wan was a proud and conceited man, but given to wild roaring and singing, and did not concern himself with the crowd. His older brother Xie An was deeply worried about him, and told him, "You are the army commander; you must please the hearts of the officers and soldiers. How can you accomplish this business being so haughty?"

Xie Wan thus gathered his generals, and without a word otherwise, was satisfied to point all around and say, "You are all elite soldiers." The generals all hated this.


How inflexible. Among those military men who exerted themselves and surpassed others, calling them "soldiers" or "privates" was taboo. For Xie Wan to call his generals "soldiers" was a grave insult to them.

Xie An worried Xie Wan could not avoid trouble, and so went along as an advisor, offering advice and suggestions. Xie Wan then led his troops into Wo and Yingchaun to aid Luoyang. Chi Tan became ill and fell back to camp at Pengcheng. Xie Wan believed that the Yan army was vast, and when he heard of Chi Tan's retreat, he wanted to lead his soldiers back, but they all panicked and scattered. Xie Wan was the only general who wished to go back, while his other generals all insisted upon turning their defeat into a victory, and they only halted after Xie An’s pleading.


The Wo River flowed into the Huai River at Shanrang, and the Ying River flowed into it at Xiacai. Xie Wan's soldiers marched from Xiacai to the region between the Wo and Ying Rivers.

It is easy for a commander to advance, but difficult to retreat. If a good commander wishes to conduct a retreat, he must first develop a plan for it and afterwards carry it out. He cannot only defend against the enemy's pursuit troops, but must also ensure that his own soldiers do not panic and scatter.

Because of this, Xie Wan was removed from office and demoted to commoner status, and he surrendered his rank of General Who Establishes Valor to Chi Tan. Xuchang, Yingchuan, Qiao, and Pei thus once again came under the influence of Yan.

According to A New Account of the Tales of the World (V.55), Xie Wan was defeated at Xiacai, near Shouchun.

Tales, XXIV.14: When Xie Wan went on the northern expedition (against Former Yan in 358) he constantly demonstrated his superiority by whistling and chanting poems, and never showed any consideration for his officers or men. His elder brother, Xie An, highly respected and loved Wan, but sensing that Wan would surely be defeated, he accompanied him on the expedition. Very casually he said to Wan, “Since you’re the supreme commander, you should invite your generals to banquets now and then to cheer their morale.”
Wan followed his advice and forthwith called together all the generals, but said nothing whatsoever to them, except to point toward those seated about him with his ju-i baton and remark, “You gentlemen are all stalwart foot soldiers.” The generals were highly incensed and resented him all the more for this. Xie An, wishing to make some profound demonstration of kindness and trust, went in person to every one, from the divisional commanders on down, to express his earnest apologies on behalf of his brother.
After Xie Wan was defeated (in 359), the rank and file wanted to use the occasion to get rid of him, but at the same time they said, “We should spare him for Xie An’s sake.” Thus by good fortune he escaped with his life.
(Hu Sanxing’s commentary on the above ZZTJ passage states that “All who had personally exerted themselves in the ranks considered the terms 兵 “man-at-arms”, and 士 ”foot soldier” to be taboo words. Now these men had already become generals, yet Wan was calling them “foot soldiers”, thereby intensifying their resentment.)

Tales, X.21: When Xie Wan was defeated at Shouchun in 359, even though he was about to flee for his life, he still demanded his jade-studden stirrups. His older brother Xie An, who was in the army, from first to last had never said anything whatever to Wan either of blame or of praise. But on that day he made a point of saying, “Right now what need is there to trouble yourself over this?” A commentary to this passage claims it is badly mistaken, because Xie An was still in hermitage at this time, but the above ZZTJ passage agrees with this one.


12. Fu Jian appointed Wang Meng as Supervisor of the Masters of Writing, entrusting him with the affairs of the Crown Prince. In the eleventh month, Wang Meng was appointed Deputy Director of the Left, and more appointments followed.


13. In the twelfth month, Sima Jin, the son of Jin's Prince of Wuling, Sima Xi, was appointed as Prince of Liang.


㻱 is pronounced "jin" or "jin".


14. There was a great drought in Jin.


15. On the day Xinyou, Murong Jun became seriously ill. He said to the Grand Marshal, the Prince of Taiyuan Murong Ke, "I shall certainly not recover from this illness. Now we face threats on two fronts. Jingmao is still young, and the state faces many dangers. I wish to follow the example of Duke Xuan of Song, and pass the affairs of state on to you. What do you think?"


The two threats were Jin and Qin.

Duke Xuan of Song passed over his son Yuyi and gave his position to his younger brother, Duke Mu of Song.

Murong Ke said, "Although the Crown Prince is young, he is superior when it comes to rulership. Who am I, that I dare to claim legitimacy?"

Murong Jun angrily said, "This is between we brothers; don't babble such false modesty!"

Murong Ke said, "If you believe I am capable of being your successor, how can I not be capable of assisting the Crown Prince instead?"

Murong Jun happily replied, "Then you may be a Duke of Zhou, and I need have no regrets! Li Ji is clear, loyal, and bright; you have seen his goodness."

Murong Chui was summoned to Ye.


15. Fu Jian appointed Wang Meng to many additional posts, including General Who Supports The State, Colonel Director of Retainers, 居中宿衛, Deputy Director, 詹事, Palace Attendant, Prefect of the Palace Secretariat, and many more. Wang Meng sent a memorial asking to decline, offering as alternative suggestions the 散騎常侍 and Duke of Yangping Fu Rong, the Household Counsellor and 散騎 Ren Qun of Xihe, or the 處士 Zhu Tong of Jingzhao instead. But Fu Jian did not agree.


光祿 and 散騎 are abbreviations for Household Counsellor and 散騎常侍.

What is here written as 朱彤 Zhu Tong should be 朱肜 Zhu Yong, a Qin general who features heavily in subsequent history.

He appointed Fu Rong as Palace Attendant, Palace Secretary, and Deputy Director of the Left; he appointed Ren Qun as Household Counsellor and acting Prefect of the Crown Prince’s Household; he appointed Zhu Tong as Gentleman Attendant of the Masters of Writing and as acting Crown Prince’s Attendant.


The "Records of Jin" says, "The Prefect of the Crown Prince's Household was responsible for punishments and cases, grain and funds, and food and drink. The office was comparable to that of the Minister of Finance or the Minister Steward."

According to the Han system, the Masters of Writing had thirty-six Gentleman Attendants. There were three subdivisions of ranks indicated. A new appointee was a Attendant of the Masters of Writing. After a year, they became a Gentleman of the Masters of Writing. After three years, they were named Gentleman Attendant. The "Records of Jin" says, "The office of 庶子 was similar to that of a Regular Attendant of 散騎 or Prefect of Palace Secretaries."

Wang Meng at this time was thirty-six. Within one year he had been promoted five times, and his authority extended to every corner. Whenever anyone slandered him, Fu Jian invariably punished them, and none of the other ministers dared to repeat it.


Wang Meng had first been appointed as Minister of the Left of the Masters of Writing. He then became Interior Minister of Xianyang; next became Palace Attendant, Prefect of the Palace Secretariat, and acting Intendant of Jingzhao; after that he was Supervisor of the Masters of Writing; and last he became the Crown Prince's 詹事 and Deputy Director of the Left. These were his five promotions.

Fu Jian appointed the Deputy Director of the Left, Li Wei, as acting Protector, and appointed the Deputy Director of the Right, Liang Pinglao, as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Commander of Beichui military affairs, and Grand General Who Guards The North, and he was stationed west of Shuofang; he appointed the Marshal to the Prime Minister Jia Yong as Protector of Yunzhong, and he camped south of Yunzhong.


16. Many of the Yan soldiers that had been drafted for the planned expeditionary force gathered at Ye.


The soldiers gathered here now are the ones who scattered and caused trouble in the following year.
Last edited by Taishi Ci 2.0 on Tue May 02, 2017 8:32 pm, edited 14 times in total.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:28 pm


The Fourth Year of Shengping (The Gengshen Year, 360 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, on the day Guisi, Murong Jun held a grand inspection of his drafted troops at Ye. He wished for the Grand Marshal Murong Ke and the Minister of Works Yang Wu to lead an invasion against Jin or Qin. However, his illness became critical, so he summoned Murong Ke, Yang Wu, the Minister Over The Masses Murong Ping, and the General Who Directs The Army Muyu Gen as regents over the government. On the day Jiawu, he passed away.


He was forty-two.

On the day Wuzi, the Crown Prince Murong Wei ascended the throne. At that time he was eleven years old. A general amnesty was declared, and the reign era title for Yan changed to Jianxi.


Murong Wei, styled Jingmao, was Murong Jun's third son.

According to the 長曆, the first month of this year began on the Jiaqu day. Now Murong Jun died on the Jiawu day. By the calendar reckoning, the Wuzi day comes before the Jiawu day, yet the text claims that Murong Wei's ascension was on the Wuzi day. I believe the actual day of Murong Wei's ascension was the Wuqu day.


2. Fu Jian reformed Yongzhou province from parts of Sizhou and the capital province. He appointed the Duke of Henan, Fu Shuang, as Commander over the three provinces of Yongzhou, Hezhou, and Liangzou, as well as granting him the ranks Grand General Who Conquers The West and Inspector of Yongzhou. His title was raised to Duke of Zhao, and he was stationed at Anding. His younger brother Fu Zhong became the new Duke of Henan.


Hezhou and Liangzhou were not Qin territory; they were controlled by the Zhang clan in Former Liang. So the territory that Fu Shuang was assigned to was actually just the five commandaries around Anding.

This was why, during the rebellion of the dukes later on, Fu Shuang began his rebellion at Anding.


3. The Duke of Chouchi, Yang Jun, passed away. His son Yang Shi inherited his title.


4. In the second month, Yan honored Empress Kezuhun as Empress Dowager. The Prince of Taiyuan, Murong Ke, was named Grand Governor, with general control over the government. The Prince of Shangyong, Murong Ping, was named Grand Tutor; Fang Wu was named Grand Guardian; Muyu Gen was named Grand Instructor, and all of them assisted in administering the state.

Muyu Gen was of a stubborn disposition. Because of his longer service under the past two sovereigns, he did not respect Murong Ke, and he acted arrogant. At that time Empress Dowager Kezuhun was concerned about foreign matters. Muyu Gen wished to stir up trouble, so he said to Murong Ke, "At the moment, our lord is still young, and the Empress Dowager is meddling in affairs. Your Highness should beware of changes from without; you must rely upon your own thinking. You are the one who has the ability to pacify the realm. A younger brother succeeding an older brother has long been an accepted law. After our late lord has been buried at Shanling Tomb, then you should depose the young lord and make yourself Prince. By your doing so, Yan will enjoy boundless fortune."


Muyu Gen had found success in battle ever since Murong Huang first took power.

When Muyu Gen appealed to laws of succession, he meant the law of the Duan tribe, not the laws that had been followed in China since the Zhou dynasty, where the eldest legitimate son was almost always the preferred choice.

Murong Ke replied, "Are you drunk? What wickedness are you speaking? We both received our late lord’s mandate to protect his son; how can I set that duty aside for such a reason?" Muyu Gen remorsefully withdrew.

Murong Ke mentioned the incident to the Prince of Wu, Murong Chui, and Murong Chui advocated executing Muyu Gen. Murong Ke said, "Our late lord has only just passed away, and both of our neighbors are watching us for any pretext they can seize upon. Both Muyu Gen and I were entrusted with the state, and if regents begin executing one another, I fear it would play into the hands of our enemies both near and fear. I shall simply have to put up with him for now."


The two neighbors were Jin and Qin.

The 秘書臨 Huangfu Zhen said to Murong Ke, “Muyu Gen was originally a base and unremarkable fellow. But since he received the favor of our late lord, now he thinks he can join in discussions and overturn orders. He is an ignorant miscreant, and with the state already in mourning, the day is fast approaching when he will cause some disaster. Consider that you now occupy the same position as the Duke of Zhou. You should think carefully about what you must do for the good of the state, and carry it out at once." But Murong Ke did not heed him.


5. Muyu Gen then said to Murong Wei and to Lady Kezuhun, "The Grand Governor and Grand Tutor are plotting against the law. I ask to lead the palace guards to execute them."

Lady Kezuhun was about to agree with him, but Murong Wei said, "The two dukes have the best interests of the state at heart. They were chosen by our late lord, who grasped their arms to charge them with this final duty. They certainly will not shirk it now. Grand Tutor, who would have guessed that you wished to stir up such trouble?" So Muyu Gen gave up on that attempt.

But Muyu Gen also pondered over what opportunities might lie in the east, so he again went to Lady Kezuhun and Murong Wei and said, "The realm is currently desolate, and if an invasion should happen, the country would be in great danger. It would be better to return to the east."


Muyu Gen meant for the court to return to the former capital at Longcheng, which was northeast of Ye.

When Murong Ke heard of it, he discussed things with the Grand Tutor Murong Ping, and secretly sent in a memorial outlining Muyu Gen’s offenses. He sent the Guard General of the Right, Fu Yan, to interrogate and then execute Muyu Gen, along with his wife, his children, and his partisans. A general amnesty was declared.


Since Murong Ke had executed Muyu Gen and his wife, children, and partisans, he feared that other people might consider rebellion, so he issued the amnesty in order to ease that threat.

At that time, the nation was still newly in mourning, and with these executions and other disturbances, people near and far became afraid. But Murong Ke ordered a halt to everything in order to restore the old order, and no one saw him looking afraid. Whenever he went out, he only brought a single attendant to follow him. Someone suggested implementing stricter procedures, but Murong Ke said, “When people are full of fear, the most important thing is to restore peace and stability. If we give people further cause for alarm, then who will they be able to turn to?" Thus were the people's hearts laid at ease.


6. Although Murong Ke held a great rank, and received the respect of the court, he acted cautiously and deliberately, and consulted with the Minister Over The Masses Murong Ping in all matters before taking any action. He treated the scholar-officials well and modestly, and he sought out virtuous council. He favored the talented with office, but no man went beyond his office. If an official or a court minister made some error, he did not publically denounce them, but took them aside to speak with them, and he did not order them punished, but only reprimanded them in this sort of manner and so brought about changes in office that way. So the people of that time were overjoyed with him, and none dared act against him. Whenever someone made a petty mistake, others would reproach them by saying, "Do you want the Governor-Duke to change your position?"


That is to say that he effected the changing of offices through these talks, and not through public orders concerning their faults.

Murong Ke was a Duke, but he also held the office of Grand Governor, so people would call him the Governor-Duke.

When the Jin court learned of Murong Jun's death, everyone expected the Central Plains to be retaken. But Huan Wen said, "So long as Murong Ke is there, I fear we face a greater problem."


The text is saying that since Murong Ke was able to administer the state for a young lord, Huan Wen could appreciate that he would be a worthy foe.


7. In the third month, on the day Jimao, Murong Jun was buried at Longling Tomb. He was given the posthumous name Emperor Jingzhao, and his temple name was Liezu.


Since Murong Jun’s tomb was in Longcheng, it also had this other name (besides Shanling).

The soldiers who had been gathered for the campaign were causing many difficulties for the Yan court. They often caused disturbances among each other, and would often wander off without authorization, which clogged the roads south of Ye. Murong Ke appointed the Prince of Wu, Murong Chui, as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, General Who Conquers The South, Commander of all military affairs south of the Yellow River, Governor of Yanzhou, and Inspector of Jingzhou, and he was stationed at Litai in the Liang fief. Sun Xi was appointed Inspector of Bingzhou, and Fu Yan was appointed General Who Protects The Army. They led twenty thousand cavalry to find all of the errant soldiers who had gone south of the Yellow River. They traveled as far as the Huai River, then came back. Sun Xi was the younger brother of Sun Yong.


The text is saying that Murong Ke ordered this operation because of the great concern the errant soldiers were causing for the state and the danger they posed to the people.

觀兵 here means to root out the missing soldiers.

Sun Yong was among the Yan officers who resisted the Yan invasion, as was mentioned in the fourth year of Xiankang (336) in Book 96. The histories mention that the sons and younger brothers of Sun Yong, Ju Peng, and Song Zhu, all of whom remained loyal to Yan during that difficult time, received great esteem and honor in Yan, in order to encourage others to defend their cities even unto death and not defect, knowing that their sons and grandsons would receive good fortune.


8. The Xiongnu leader Liu Weichen sent messengers to submit to Qin. He asked that Qin permit him the use of some farmland; he would come to use it in the spring and then leave again after autumn. Fu Jian permitted it.

In summer, the fourth month, Qin’s 雲中 Protector of the Army, Jia Yong, sent his Marshal Xu Yun to raid the Xiongnu farmers with cavalry; they took many of them captive and then returned. Fu Jian angrily said, "I extended my grace to the tribes, and yet you are so petty as to steal from them!" He dismissed Jia Yong from office and demoted him to commoner status, while he sent the captured Xiongnu back home, and soothed them. Liu Weichen thus dwelled in Sai with his people, and regularly sent tribute to Qin.


9. In summer, the sixth month, Lady Murong, who was the concubine of the King of Dai Tuoba Shiyijian, passed away. In autumn, the seventh month, Liu Weichen returned to Dai to attend the funeral. He requested to marry into the Tuoba family, so Tuoba Shiyijian gave him his daughter as a wife.


10. In the eighth month, on the new moon of the day Xinchou, there was an eclipse, 既.


11. In Jin, Xie An had been famous since youth. Although he was often requested to take up office, he declined all the offers, but retired to Kuaiji, where he found amusement among the hills and rivers and in writing. Although he wore common clothes, the people all knew the pedigree of his family, and they said to each other, "If Anshi does not come out, then what are the common people to do?" Xie An often swam in the sea near Mount Dong; he often went to visit prostitutes and then returned. When Sima Yu heard of it, he said, "Since Anshi knows the pleasures of other men, he must also be required to share their fears. He must be summoned here."


Mount Dong was fifteen miles southeast of modern-day Shaoxing in Shangyu County. Xie An's former residence there is a national shrine in our times.

Xie An had a wife; she was the younger sister of Liu Tan. When she saw a fine family estate and how Xie An lived alone and frugally, she said, "Shouldn't a husband and wife be like this?" Xie An pinched his nose and said, "I fear it can’t be helped."


He means to say he fears he cannot avoid serving in office as his other brothers did.

Liu Tan was famous for his Pure Conversation talents. He, Xie Shang, Xie Yi, and Xie Wan had all been border commanders, and they flourished during this time. 惔 is pronounced "tan (t-an)".

After his younger brother Xie Wan was removed from office, Xie An began to have ambitions of his own. At that time, he was over forty. Grand General Who Conquers The West Huan Wen invited him to become his Marshal, and Xie An at last heeded the call. Huan Wen was greatly pleased, and treated Xie An with deep respect.


Xie An's style name was Anshi. The people of the Southland had all originally pinned their hopes on Yin Hao. But since Yin Hao had failed to live up to their expectations, they now began to believe in Xie An, certain that Xie An would be able to help support the Jin royal family. It was a household belief that Xie An was superior and Yin Hao was inferior. In my view, when one has such widespread reputation, it is difficult to remain in second place. Yin Hao's defeats came about because he was equally popular to Huan Wen, which made Yin Hao think little of Huan Wen. We could also consider the fate of the Shi clan, whose troubles all came about because of those who felt entitled to higher positions, and whose state crumbled so quickly after defeats. Xie An had already once before been a subordinate minister during the time that Huan Wen wielded power, and he had seen what had happened to Yin Hao after his defeats, and how that had helped Huan Wen. Even after Huan Wen's death, when Qin became stronger, Xie An acted cautiously in order to protect himself, and often had to wrestle with fears, just for this reason. This are the sorts of things that historians can clear up and explain, like Xie An's incidents of banging shoes upon the threshold or the dream of the white chicken, to elucidate them.

The incident of banging shoes upon the threshold is mentioned later on, during 383. The dream of the white chicken is not mentioned in ZZTJ; it is taken from Xie An's biography in the Book of Jin.


"When Huan Wen was still here, I often lived in endless dread of him. There was one night when I dreamed that I was riding along with him. We traveled together for sixteen li, but then stopped when we saw a white chicken. My riding along with Huan Wen was an indication of my position. The sixteen li were these past sixteen years. And the white chicken indicates a You year. Now this very year is a You year, so now my illness has left me!"


12. In winter, the tenth month, Dugu Bu of the Wuhuan and Meiyi Gan of the Xianbei both submitted to Qin with their tens of thousands of followers. Fu Jian placed them in southern Sai. The Duke of Yangping, Fu Rong, remonstrated with this, saying, "The tribesmen put on a good act, but they do not know benevolence or righteousness. They may bow to you, but they are really only out for themselves, coveting our land and our bounty. Virtue means nothing to them. The only reason that they have not dared to attack our borders is because they fear the might of our soldiers, not because they have any respect for your grace. Now if you put them in Sai, and they live mixed among the people, then they will spy on all the commandaries and the counties, knowing the true extent of them, which will certainly cause us trouble on the border. It would be better if you resettle them outside of Sai, in order to head off any trouble." Fu Jian followed his advice.


13. In the eleventh month, Huan Wen was named the Duke of Nanjun. His younger brother Huan Chong was named the Duke of Fengcheng, and Huan Wen’s son Huan Ji was named the Duke of Linhe.


14. Murong Ke wished to appoint Li Ji as Deputy Director of the Right, but Murong Wei forbade it. When Murong Ke continued to ask for it, Murong Wei replied, "Many affairs are in your hands, Uncle, but as for Boyang, allow me to decide for myself." He sent Li Ji away to be Administrator of Zhangwu. Li Ji died from worry.


The source of Murong Wei's animosity for Li Ji was mentioned in the last year of the last book (Book 100, 359.3)
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:34 pm


The Fifth Year of Shengping (The Xinyou Year, 361 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, on the day Wuxu, a general amnesty was declared.


2. Liu Weichen raided Qin's borders and captured more than fifty people as slaves to be presented to Qin (as his tribute). Fu Jian blamed Liu Weichen for this and returned them. Liu Weichen thus rebelled against Qin, and once more inclined towards Dai.


The text shows how the barbarians went back on their word.


3. Jin’s Earl Jian of Dong’an, Chi Tan, passed away.

In the second month, the Administrator of Dongyang, Fan Wang, was appointed Commander of military affairs for Xuzhou, Yanzhou, Qingzhou, Jizhou, and Youzhou, and was appointed Inspector of Xuzhou and Yanzhou (to take over for Chi Tan).


4. The people of Pingyang surrendered their commandary to Yan. Yan's General Who Establishes Valor, Duan Gang, was appointed as Administrator of Pinyang, and they sent the Protector Han Bao with troops to help guard Pingyang.


At the time of this incident, Pingyang was under the control of the Bingzhou warlord Zhang Ping.


5. The magician Ding Jin had enjoyed the favor of Murong Wei (or Murong Jun). He wished to curry favor with Murong Ke, so he told him to kill the Grand Tutor Murong Ping. Murong Ke was greatly angered, and ordered Ding Jin to be arrested and executed.


Some versions say "Murong Jun" instead of "Murong Wei".


6. In Yan’s territory, the rebel warlord Gao Chang passed away.


Gao Chang had earlier fled to Xingyang, as was mentioned in the third year of Shengping (Book 100, 359.8).

Yan's Administrator of Henei, Lü Hu, gathered a host of soldiers, and sent word of submission to Jin. A memorial was presented to the Jin court to appoint him as Jin’s Inspector of Jizhou. Lü Hu wished to lead Jin forces to attack Ye. In the third month, Murong Ke led an army of fifty thousand men, while the Champion General Huangfu Zhen led another ten thousand, and they jointly campaigned against Lü Hu. When the Yan armies reached Yewang, Lü Hu withdrew into his city to defend.

Yan’s General Who Protects The Army Fu Yan asked to fiercely press the assault, in order to save time. Murong Ke replied, “The reason that old rebel has so often switched sides is that he is always looking to protect himself. He must have made preparations to defend the city, so we cannot be so quick to assault it. Remember what happened during the assault at Liyang: many of our best soldiers were killed, but in the end we could not capture the city, and it was the source of much misery and shame.

Murong Ke refers to Yang Wu's failed assault against Gao Chang at Liyang, mentioned in Book 100 (358.10).

"Now on the other hand, consider these points. Within the city, Lü Hu has accumulated no stores of grain, while outside the city, he has no expectations of reinforcements. We may build deep trenches and high ramparts outside his walls, and leave our men to hold them to ensure our own defenses. Then we may rest the soldiers and build ties with the local people, and isolate Lü Hu from his erstwhile supporters. With no exertion on our part, Lü Hu will be hemmed in further and further by the day. We will find ourselves masters of the city in less than a hundred days. Why then should we throw away countless lives just to slightly hasten our achievement?" So the Yan army built siege lines around the city.


7. In summer, the fourth month, Huan Wen appointed his younger brother, the Yellow Gate Gentleman Huan Huo, as Commander of the seven commandaries of the Mian River. He was also made the Administrator of Xinye and Yicheng/duo. Huan Wen led troops to capture Xuchang, and defeated the Yan general Murong Chen.


In some versions, the 都 in the term 都督 (Commander) is not written.

Cao-Wei created the offices of Palace Secretary and Prefect of the Palace Secretariat, as well as Gentleman of 通事 and Yellow Gate Gentleman.

The seven commandaries of the Mian River were Weixing, Xincheng, Shangyong, Xiangyang, Yicheng, Jingling, and Jiangxia.

In the name of the city 義城, 城 is pronounced "duo (d-uo)".


8. Liang's Grand General of Agile Cavalry Song Hun became gravely ill. Zhang Xuanjing and his grandmother Lady Ma came to visit Song Hun, asking, "General, if anything should happen to you, who will be able to sustain us? Shall your son Song Linzhong take up your role?"

Song Hun replied, "My son Linzhong is young and weak; he could not bear such a great role. If Your Highness does not wish to cease relying upon my family, there is my younger brother Song Cheng. In matters of administering affairs, he is better than I am. But I fear that he has that Confucian placidity, and does not look out for opportunities. Your Highness must encourage him, then he can be used."


Many Confucian gentlemen were leisurely and unhurried in conducting affairs, and thus were unable to act quickly in response to opportunities for achievement.

Song Hun also said to Song Cheng and his sons, "Our family has enjoyed the favor of the state. After my death is reported, do not act proud because of your influence." He also met with the court ministers, and charged them to act loyally. Soon after this, he passed away, and the streets were full of wailing and weeping. Zhang Xuanjing appointed Song Cheng as General Who Directs The Army, acting as the new regent.


9. In the fifth month, on the day Dingsi, Emperor Mu of Jin passed away. He did not leave an heir.


He was nineteen.

Empress Dowager Chu commanded, "The Prince of Langye, Sima Pi, is of the original line. His virtue is clear, and he is beyond all others; let him rise to the throne!" Thus the ministers all prepared the ceremonies to welcome Sima Pi to the throne. On the day Gengshen, he became the Emperor, and a general amnesty was declared. On the day Renxu, he passed on his former title of Prince of Langye to his younger brother, the Prince of Donghai Sima Yi. In autumn, the seventh month, on the day Wuwu, the late Emperor Mu was buried at Yongping Tombs; his temple name was Jiaozong.


Emperor Yuan (Sima Rui) had been succeeded by his eldest son Sima Shao, who became Emperor Ming. He in turn was succeeded by his eldest son Sima Yan, who became Emperor Cheng. But after Emperor Cheng's death, the throne had passed to his brother Emperor Kang, and then to his son Emperor Mu. The Prince of Langye, Sima Pi, was Emperor Cheng's eldest son, and so the Empress Dowager said this was restoring the original line of succession.


10. The Yan soldiers kept Yewang under siege for some months. Lü Hu sent his general Zhang Xing out to fight a battle, but Fu Yan fought and killed him. Things within the city became worse by the day. Huangfu Zhen warned the other officers, "In Lü Hu's desperation, he will certainly attempt to flee by launching a sudden attack against one of our weak points. Though all of you have won many times, your arms and armor have been degraded, so you must keep good care of them." So the soldiers were issued many new shields and spears, and people came to examine them each night.

Lü Hu's food was exhausted. He gathered together all of his best troops and suddenly emerged from the city to launch an attack, but he could not break out. Murong Ke led his soldiers to attack them, and all of Lü Hu's men were either killed or wounded. He himself escaped, abandoning his wife and children as he fled to Xingyang.

Murong Ke soothed the people who surrendered, and supplied them with his own food. The leading scholarly and military families were sent to Ye, while Murong Ke allowed the rest to go where they would. He appointed Lü Hu's former advisor, Liang Chen of Guangping, as Gentleman of the 著作 of the Palace Secretariat.


Emperor Wu of Jin (Sima Yan) had abolished the office of 祕書幷中書, and it was now called Gentleman of the 著作 of the Palace Secretariat.

琛 is pronounced "chen (ch-en)".


11. In the ninth month, on the day Wushen, Emperor Ai’s concubine Lady Wang was made the Empress of Jin. She was the daughter of Wang Meng (of Jin). Emperor Mu's former empress, Empress He, was renamed to Empress Mu, and she retired to Yong'an Palace.


12. Liang's Marshal of the Right, Zhang Yong, hated Song Chen having control of affairs. He raised troops and attacked Song Cheng, killing him, and wiping out his whole family. Zhang Xuanjing appointed Zhang Yong as Army Protector of the Center, and appointed his own uncle Zhang Tianxi as General Who Directs The Army of the Center; the two of them jointly ran the state.


How could Song Cheng not have taken heed of the course of events, even when it involved his entire clan? From this one can truly see that men of Confucian placidity cannot handle the affairs of state.


13. The Bingzhou warlord Zhang Ping had earlier attacked Yan's Pingyang, where he killed Duan Gang and Han Bao. He had also attacked Yanmen, and killed its Administrator, Dan Nan. But after Zhang Ping was attacked by Qin, he asked Yan's forgiveness and pleaded for their aid. Yan did not trust Zhang Ping and refused to help him, so Zhang Ping was ultimately wiped out by Qin.


14. On the day Yihai, a general amnesty was declared in Qin.


15. Jin's Inspector of Xuzhou and Yanzhou, Fan Wang, did not like Huan Wen. When Huan Wen went on his northern expedition, he ordered Fan Wang to lead his troops out from the Liang fief. In winter, the tenth month, after Huan Wen charged him with inactivity, Fan Wang was demoted to commoner status and stripped of office, and he died at home.


When Huan Wen first became General Who Guards The West, Fan Wang was his subordinate, and he disliked and suspected Huan Wen. If Fan Wang was able to raise suspicions against Huan Wen at that time, he certainly must have known about Huan Wen's true intentions.

Fan Wang’s son was Fan Ning. Fan Ning was well-versed in Confucian learning, and he had a direct temperament. He often likened the crimes of Wang Bi and He Yan to those of Jie of Xia and King Zhou of Shang. Someone once suggested that he went too far in his denunciations of them. Fan Ning said, "Wang Bi and He Yan slighted and belittled the Classics, and they hid and shied away from benevolence and righteousness. They used flighty words and shallow rhetoric, and so misled young men to ruin. They drove away officials and altered the government, until the rites became dissolute and the music fallen. We have suffered these disasters, including the fall of the Central Plains and the handing down of vulgar traditions, thanks to them. The tumult of the ages of Jie and King Zhou, when men mourned and the dynasties fell, served as examples to later ages. How can it be that we have made the people relive those eras? That is why I say that the disasters of one era, and the source of trouble for many ages, stems from evil and vulgar men who lead many astray with their great crimes."

Wang Bi and He Yan were philosophers and ministers during the reign of Cao Rui who proposed new interpretations of Confucian and Daoism, but were also known for their lax behavior.


16. Lü Hu again rebelled against Jin, and fled to Yan. Yan pardoned him, making him the Inspector of Guangzhou.


Yan obviously did not rule the far southern province of Guangzhou, so this title was only meant to bolster Lü Hu's name with some office.


17. Liang's regent Zhang Yong was arrogant and promiscuous. He spread his influence over the government by cultivating many partisans, and he put many other people to death. The people of Liang suffered from many troubles.

Zhang Tianxi's follower, Liu Shu of Dunhuang, said to Zhang Tianxi, "Someone ought to bring peace to the state!"

Zhang Tianxi asked him, "What do you mean?"

Liu Shu said, "Look at all of General Zhang Yong’s comings and goings. He is becoming another Marquis of Changning."


Marquis of Changning was the title of the usurper Zhang Zuo.

Zhang Tianxi said, "I have long had similar doubts, but I dared not say anything. But what is your plan to bring peace?"

Liu Shu said, "To get rid of General Zhang at once!"

Zhang Tianxi said, "And who will be the man to do it?"

Liu Shu said, "I myself will do it!"

Liu Shu at that time had just turned twenty. Zhang Tianxi said, "You are young; you will need some help."

Liu Shu said, "It'll be enough if it's Zhao Baiju and me."

In the eleventh month, Zhang Tianxi and Zhang Yong entered court, with Liu Shu and Zhao Baiju following behind Zhang Tianxi. When Zhang Yong passed under the gate, Liu Shu swung his sword at Zhang Yong but did not hit him, and Zhao Baiju did so as well, but did not hit him either. They fled along with Zhang Tianxi into the palace.


Some versions add "when Zhang Yong was under the gate" after "they followed behind Zhang Tianxi".

Zhang Yong wanted to pursue them, and led more than three hundred armored guards to attack the palace gate. Zhang Tianxi climbed onto a building and shouted, "Zhang Yong is a wild and wicked man, lacking in principles. He wiped out the Song clan, and plans to do the same thing to the royal family too. You are all loyal generals of Liang; how can you endure such civil strife? Only Zhang Yong himself is the culprit; no one else shall be blamed!" After hearing this, many of the guards abandoned Zhang Yong. Zhang Yong then killed himself, and his immediate family and his partisans were eliminated.


Ever since the death of Zhang Chonghua, whenever the reins of power in Liangzhou changed hands, from Zhang Zuo, to Zhang Guan, to Song Hun, to Zhang Yong, and then to Zhang Tianxi, it was accompanied by the slaughter and extinguishment of the earlier man's family and supporters. This was what brought about Former Liang's decline.

Zhang Xuanjing appointed Zhang Tianxing as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Grand Champion General, Commander of all military affairs, and sole regent over the government. In the twelfth month, Zhang Tianxi changed the reign era title. Up until now, Liangzhou had continued to follow the reign era title of Emperor Min, so they were now in the forty-ninth year of Jianxing. Zhang Tianxi changed this to the current Eastern Jin reign era title, the fifth year of Shengping. The Jin court appointed Zhang Xuanjing as Grand Commander, Marshal of Longyou, Inspector of Liangzhou, Colonel Who Protects The Qiang, and Duke of Xiping.


18. A general amnesty was declared in Yan.


19. Fu Jian ordered his governors, nobles, administrators, and officials to promote filial piety, frugality, scholarship, administration, and other principles, and to reward those who deserved it and punish those who deserved it. Thus, no one made any rash actions, but trusted in him, and the people were all encouraged. Even though the ruling family was foreign, they did not keep in office any worthless man lacking in talent or ability, but cast them all out. At that time, among ministers within and without, all were suited to their posts. Fields were repaired, warehouses were well-stocked, and thieves and bandits held their breath in fear.


20. During this year, the Marquis of Guiyi, the former Emperor of (Cheng-)Han, Li Shi, passed away.


Li Shi had surrendered to Jin after Huan Wen's conquest of his state in the third year of Yonghe (347), but he did not die until now.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:38 pm


The First Year of Longhe (The Renxu Year, 362 AD)


Emperor Ai's first name, 丕 Pi, now became taboo. He was the eldest son of Emperor Cheng, and his style name was Qianling. He had been appointed Prince of Langye in the eighth year of Xiankang (342).

Concerning his posthumous title, the 諡法 states, "One who is respectful and benevolent, but whose reign is cut short, is styled Ai ('the Lamented')."


1. In spring, the first month, on the day Renzi, a general amnesty was declared in Jin, and the reign title was changed.


2. On the day Jiayin, the farm rent in Jin was decreased, so that now every taxable 畝 was taxed two 升 of rice.


During Emperor Cheng's reign, in the fifth year of Xianhe (330), the people's farmlands had first been designated. One 畝 of land out of every ten was selected for taxation, and each 畝 was taxed three 升 of rice. At this time, the tax was decreased, so that every 畝 was taxed two 升.


3. Yan's Inspector of Yuzhou, Sun Xing, requested to attack Luoyang. He said, "Jin’s commander at Luoyang, Chen You, has only just over a thousand soldiers. That is not enough for him to defend all of his outlying cities!" This was agreed upon, and the General Who Calms The South Lü Hu was sent to camp at Heyin.


4. In the second month, on the day Xinwei, Jin's Interior Minister of Wu, Yu Xi, was appointed as 北中郎將 and Inspector of Xuzhou and Yanzhou, and he was stationed at Xiapi. The General of Dragon Cavalry, Yuan Zhen, was appointed as General of the Gentlemen of the Household of the West, to assist in command over Yuzhou, Sizhou, Bingzhou, and Jizhou, and he was appointed as Inspector of Yuzhou, and stationed at Runan. Both of them were given staffs of authority. Yu Xi was the son of Yu Bing.


Since both Yu Xi and Yuan Zhen were given staffs of authority, their ranks must have had the same position. I doubt that Yu Xi also held the position of 監護, and the text avoids it.

Yu Bing had run the Jin government during part of the Xiankang era under Emperor Cheng and Emperor Kang (339-344).


5. On the day Bingzi, Emperor Ai honored his mother, Consort Zhou, as Empress Consort Dowager, and she was treated as any other Empress Dowager.


6. Lü Hu attacked Luoyang. In the third month, on the day Yiyou, Jin's Administrator of Henan, Dai Shi, fled to Wan, and Chen You asked for emergency reinforcements. In the fifth month, on the day Dingsi, Huan Wen sent Yu Xi and the Administrator of Jingling, Deng Xia, to led three thousand soldiers by boat to help Chen You defend Luoyang. Deng Xie was the son of Deng Yue.


Huan Wen had left Dai Shi and his men at Luoyang in the twelfth year of Yonghe (Book 100, 356.16).

宛 is pronounced "wan (w-an)".

Deng Yue was a commander under the rebel general Wang Dun. After Wang Dun's defeat, he was sent to govern the far southern provinces of Jiaozhou and Guangzhou.


7. Huan Wen again requested that the Jin capital be returned to Luoyang. Ever since the Disaster of Yongjia, many people had fled over the Yangzi; the whole north was overrun, and so people fled south of the Yellow River. The court feared Huan Wen, and did not dare to agree with him. The north was seen as desolate, and the people felt afraid. However, although the court knew they could not agree with Huan Wen’s request, they also did not dare to criticize Huan either.

The Regular Attendant of 散騎 and acting Gentleman of 著作 Sun Chuo wrote a memorial stating, "When Emperor Zhongzong (Sima Rui) ascended like a dragon, it was not solely due to 'heeding Heaven's will and earning men's trust', but was thanks in large part due to having the Yangzi to use as a bulwark. From the first days of the disaster until now, more than sixty years have passed; everywhere around the Yellow and Luo Rivers has been reduced to piles of ruins, and the homeland of the Xia (ethnic Han) is smothered by sorrow and desolation. It has already been several generations since the gentry and the people fled here across the Yangzi; they have grown old, and raised sons and grandsons, and those who are still alive already have one foot in the grave. Though they still have affection and longing for the north in their hearts, it does not match the present grief. If we were to set a date to move the capital, the five tombs of the restored clan would have to be moved to a distant place. The peace of Mount Tai is difficult to protect. With all these considerations, how can it be that you have not given thought to them?


The "Records of Jin" states, "The office of Gentleman of 著作 was a Records Official office from the Zhou dynasty. During Eastern Han, the maps and census records were kept at Dongguan, and if an official working there gained some reputation, he was awarded with that office. During the Taihe era (227-233) of the Cao-Wei Emperor Ming (Cao Rui), he created the office, and from then on officials held that office, while the Director of the Palace Secretariat was abolished. Emperor Hui of Jin (Sima Zhong) created the office of 祕書監, which incorporated the 著作 duties. However, although the other aspects of 著作 were abolished, that of 隸祕書 still remained. I follow what Ban Gu has written in 西都賦: "The Chengming and Jinma gates are the courts of the 著作." From that, we can see that although Western Han did not yet have the office of 著作, the Chengming and Jinma still had 著作s as well.

Emperor Yuan's (Sima Rui) temple name was Zhongzong.

The 易‧大傳 states, "If a man seeks the support of Heaven, he must follow Heaven's will. If he wishes to receive the assistance of men, he must be worthy of their trust."

From the deposition of Empress Jia Nanfang and the Jia clan, and the execution of the Prince of Zhao Sima Lun, the resulting civil war between the various princes, the rising up of the Hu and Jie, and the great chaos that engulfed the realm, until this moment, it had been more than sixty years.

The Five Tombs of the restored imperial clan were Emperor Yuan (Sima Rui) at Jianping Tomb, Emperor Ming at Wuping Tomb, Emperor Cheng at Xingping Tomb, Emperor Kang at Chongping Tomb, and Emperor Mu at Yongping Tomb, all of which were in the Southland.

Sun Chuo means that if the capital were moved to Luoyang, it would be difficult to ensure the safety of Mount Tai, and further that Huan Wen should have given thought to the difficulty of relocating the newer imperial tombs.

“In raising this proposal, Huan Wen reveals what his true aim is, which is to conquer distant places for the state. But the people are all alarmed, and everyone is full of dread and terror. Can this be anything less than to overturn their old happiness and march them on towards a quick death? And to what end? We have taken a firm root here beyond the Yangzi for these few decades, yet he wishes to uproot us and send us to a barren land. We would be marched for ten thousand li, thrust into the thick of danger, separated from our buried dead, and be made to cast aside the progress that we have made. Our fields and our homes could not be sold to anyone, and our boats and our carts would have to be left behind. To abandon a land of peace and happiness and travel to a place wracked by chaos, where we would soon be made servants and tread an uncertain path, reduced to floating about on the tides of the rivers, would hardly be an accomplishment. Anyone who possess benevolence should lament the very prospect, that the entire state should be made slaves!


The people of the Central Plains often called the region south the Yangzi the 江外, or the 江表.

“In my unworthy opinion, it would be better to first dispatch a commander of martial reputation and true worth, and have him secure the defenses of Luoyang, before sweeping clear the regions of Liang and Xu, and restoring peace to Henan. Then let him open up paths for water transport, reclaim farmland and make it bountiful, send the lingering villains scurrying far away, and thus bring the Central Plains into an ideal state. Once that has taken place, then we may again consider moving the capital. Why throw away the gains of a hundred victories, and hurl the realm back into chaos?"


Liang was Liangguo, and Xu was Xuchang; both of them were important routes from moving from the Southland into the Luoyang region.

Sun Chuo was the grandson of Sun Chu. Since youth, he had admired the noble and the lofty. He once composed the work "Fulfilling My Original Resolve" to display his ambitions. When Huan Wen read Sun Chuo's petition, he was displeased, and he said, "If you want to restore the state, why do you ignore your 'Fulfilling My Original Resolve', and presume to know how to handle affairs of state?"

Sun Chu was the subject of the "brush with rocks and sleep in streams" story from A New Account of the Tales of the World.


8. At that time, the court was apprehensive, and was about to send a Palace Attendant to stop Huan Wen. The Inspector of Yangzhou, Wang Shu, said, "Huan Wen only wishes to prop up his influence over the court, nothing further. But if you accept his suggestion, you will only create something out of nothing."

So the court sent an edict to Huan Wen saying, "Since the cause of our original grief, five decades have passed; the barbarians burst onto the scene, leaving their wild destruction everywhere, and when we think of those in the west, we are filled with remorse and sorrow. We know that you wish to lead forth the three armies, cleanse the land of this blight, sweep clean the Central Region, and restore luster to the old capital. What other man can compare with you in such devotion to your state? In handling these matters, your position has grand calculations. But the region between the Yellow and Luo Rivers is full of ruins, and army camps are spread thick there. The undertaking has only just begun, and much lamentable toil remains.” So the matter came to nothing.


Kong Yingda remarked, "One who speaks from the old times uses the past as a foundation for later on; one who speaks of the old times uses later on to remark upon the past." From the first year of Yongxing (305) under Emperor Hui, when Liu Yuan first began the chaos, until this moment, it had been fifty-nine years. From the fifth year of Yongjia (311) under Emperor Huai, when Luoyang had fallen, until this moment, it had been fifty years.

The Central Region means the royal region. The "Rites of Zhou" mention the Nine Regions. (Summer Officials) The Royal Region occupies a thousand li of land. Stretching out from there in succession, there is the Marquisates, the 甸s, the Earldoms, the 采s, the 衞s, the Man barbarians, the Yi barbarians, the Garrisons, and the Border Posts, all of which are five hundred li. The Royal Region of these nine is in the center, so it is also called the Central Region.


9. Huan Wen further proposed moving the bells and bell-stands to Luoyang. Wang Shu said, “After our weakness during the Disaster of Yongjia, we relocated the capital south of the Yangzi for the time being; once the various regions had been pacified, then we would return to the former capital. Anyone else but you would first consider relocating the imperial tombs, and not first think of this business about the bells and bell-stands!” So Huan Wen gave it up.


10. The Jin court, because Jiaozhou and Guangzhou were distant provinces, proposed further granting to Huan Wen the provinces Bingzhou, Sizhou, and Jizhou. Huan Wen sent in a petition declining the offer.


At that time, Huan Wen commanded the eight provinces of Jingzhou, Sizhou, Yongzhou, Yizhou, Liangzhou (the Hanzhong area), Ningzhou, Jiaozhou, and Guangzhou.


11. Fu Jian personally visited the academies, quizzing the students in their subjects and discussing things with the instructors. He went to them every month.


12. In the sixth month, on the day Jiaxu, Yan's Army Advisor to the General Who Conquers The East, Liu Ba, murdered the General Who Conquers The East and Inspector of Jizhou, the Prince of Fanyang Murong You, at Xindu.


13. In autumn, the seventh month, Lü Hu retreated to defend at Xiaoping Ford, where he was hit by a stray arrow and died. The Yan general Duan Chong gathered up his troops and crossed north of the river, and camped at Yewang. Deng Xian advanced to camp at Xincheng. In the eighth month, Jin's 西中郎將 Yuan Zhen advanced and camped at Runan, and moved fifty thousand 斛s of rice to be stored at Luoyang.


Lü Hu retreated since Jin reinforcements had arrived.

Xincheng had been founded by the Rong-Man during the Spring and Autumn era. Since the Han dynasty, it had been part of Henan. Sui changed it to Yique County.


14. In winter, the eleventh month, Tuoba Shiyijian's daughter arrived in Yan, and Yan also married off a daughter.


15. In the twelfth month, on the new moon of the day Wuwu, there was an eclipse.


16. Yu Xi fell back from Xiapi and camped at Shanyang. Yuan Zhen fell back from Runan to camp at Shouyang. (Shouyang was another name for Shouchun.)


Since the Luoyang soldiers fell back, the Yan soldiers advanced again.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:41 pm


The First Year of Xingning (The Guihai Year, 363 AD)


1. In spring, the second month, on the day Jihai, a general amnesty was declared in Jin, and the Jin reign title was changed.


2. In the third month, on the day Renyin, Jin's Concubine Dowager, Lady Zhou, passed away at Langye. On the day Guimao, the Emperor went into mourning, and ordered the Minister Over The Masses and Prince of Kuaiji, Sima Yu, to assume command of affairs in his stead. The Emperor wished to mourn for the Concubine Dowager for three years. The Deputy Director Jiang Bin said, "According to the rites, you ought to wear the silken hemp." The Emperor also wished to surrender the throne for a time, but Jiang Bin said, "You must subsume your personal feelings, for in remaining devoted to duty you show filial piety to your ancestors." So the Emperor did not do so.


The Rites of Zhou states, "When a king mourns his nobles he may wear fine silk, but otherwise he should wear course mourning garments and wrap a mourning band about his head." And the Book of Rites says, "When the mourner is a son, on that account he should wear the mourning garb for three years, which ends on the anniversary of his father's or mother's death." Jiang Bin is one who suggests that the Emperor should wear the fine silk, as that would cover members of the royal family, and since Lady Zhou was his mother, he may wear the garments suggested for nobles.


3. In summer, the fourth month, Yan's General Who Calms The East, Murong Zhong, attacked Jin’s Administrator of Xingyang, Liu Yuan. Liu fled to Lüyang.

五月,加征西大將軍桓溫侍中、大司馬、都督中外諸軍、錄尚書事,假黃鉞。溫以 撫軍司馬王坦之為長史。坦之,述之子也。又以征西掾郗超為參軍,王珣為主簿,每事 必與二人謀之。府中為之語曰:「髯參軍,短主簿,能令公喜,能令公怒。」溫氣概高邁,罕有所推。與超言,常自謂不能測,傾身待之,超亦深自結納。珣,導之孫也,與謝玄皆為溫掾,溫俱重之。曰:「謝掾年四十必擁旄杖節,王掾當作黑頭公,皆未易才也。」玄,奕之子也。

4. In the fifth month, Huan Wen, who was already Grand General Who Conquers The West, was granted the further titles of Palace Attendant, Grand Marshal, Commander over all military affairs, authority over the imperial secretariat, and Bearer of the Yellow Battle-Axe.

Huan Wen appointed his Marshal Who Nurtures The Army, Wang Biaozhi, as Chief Clerk. Wang Biaozhi was the son of Wang Shu. He also appointed his assistant Chi Chao as Army Advisor, and Wang Xun was appointed as Registrar. Huan Wen consulted with these two men on every matter. It was said that "Advisor Beardy and Registrar Shorty can make everyone happy or everyone mad." Huan Wen was magnanimous, and usually followed what they advocated. When he spoke with Chi Chao, it was often about things that he himself could not sense, and he often leaned upon his advice, as Chi Chao could often perceive what he himself was thinking. Wang Xun was the grandson of Wang Dao, and he and Xie Xuan both served as Huan Wen's assistants. Huan valued them greatly, and said, "By the time Assistant Xie is forty years old, he'll certainly grasp the commander's standard and the marshal's baton. And Assistant Wang will become a 'black-haired ducal minister'. They should not be counted out." Xie Xuan was the son of Xie Yi.


This was because Chi Chao had a large beard, and Wang Xun was short.

Huan Wen’s ‘black-haired ducal minister’ comment meant that Wang Xun would achieve high office while still young enough for his hair not to have turned white.


5. Jin's 西中郎將 Yuan Zhen assumed command of affairs in Sizhou, Jizhou, and Bingzhou, while the 北中郎將 Yu Xi assumed command in Qingzhou.


6. On the day Guimao, Yan captured Micheng. Liu Yuan fled to Jiangling.


During Han, Mi County was part of Henan commandary. During Jin, it became part of Xingyang commandary.


7. In autumn, the eighth month, comets passed through the Horn and Neck constellations.


The Horn was two stars; the Neck was four stars. The "Astrological Records of Jin" states, "The Horn, Neck, and Root constellations correspond to Zhengzhou and Yanzhou."


8. Zhang Xuanjing's grandmother (presumably Lady Ma) passed away. He honored his father's concubine, who was his own mother, Lady Guo, as Concubine Dowager. Lady Guo left government affairs in the hands of Zhang Tianxi. She plotted with the chief ministers, Zhang Qin and others, to kill Zhang Tianxi, but the plot was discovered, and Zhang Qin and the others were killed. Zhang Xuanjing, afraid, offered the throne to Zhang Tianxi, but he did not accept it. General of the Right Liu Shu and others urged Zhang Tianxi to take the throne for himself.

In the intercalary month, Zhang Tianxi sent Liu Shu and others to lead soldiers into the palace at night. They murdered Zhang Tianxi. It was announced that he had died from sudden illness; his posthumous title was Duke Zhong. Zhang Tianxi then declared himself as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Grand Commander, Grand General, Governor of Liangzhou, and Duke of Xiping. At that time, he was eighteen years old. He honored his mother, the Beauty Liu, as Consort Dowager. He sent the Marshal Lun Qian to present his seals at Jiankang and ask for instructions. He also released Jin’s 御史 Yu Gui, whom Zhang Chonghua had imprisoned all this time, to return home to Jin.


Sima Guang comments in the 考異, "The 'Imperial Records' state that Zhang Tianxi killed Zhang Xuanjing and claimed the throne in the seventh month. But I follow the account listed in the 'Annals of Jin'."

綸 Lun is a surname. The 姓譜 states, "According to the 魏志, Sun Wenduan had a minister named Lun Zhi."

Emperor Mu had sent Yu Gui to Liangzhou in the third year of Yonghe (347), and he only now returned.


9. On the day Guihai, a general amnesty was declared in Jin.


10. In winter, the tenth month, Yan's General Who Guards The South, Murong Chen, attacked Jin's Administrator of Chenliu, Yuan Pi, at Changping. Jin’s Administrator of Runan, Zhu Bin, took advantage of this opportunity to attack Xuchang, and took it.


During Former Han, Changping County was part of Runan commandary. During Later Han and Jin, it was part of Chen commandary. Xian remarked, "The old city of Changping was northwest of Wanqiu County in Chenzhou from our time."

Sima Guang comments in the 考異, "The Book of Yan records Zhu Bin's name as Zhu Li. But I follow the 'Jin Imperial Records'."


11. Tuoba Shiyijian attacked the Gaoche people, greatly routing them. He took captive more than ten thousand of them, along with millions of horses, cattle, and sheep.


The Gaoche were the same as the Chile. Because of the tall wheels on their carts, they were also called the Gaoche. Li Yanshou remarked, "The Gaoche were one of the old barbaric peoples. They were first called the 'Dili', and in the north they were the Gaoche Dingling. They moved about to follow fresh grass, they wore skins and ate flesh, just like the Rouran, but their cart wheels were taller and larger, and their wheels were thus more numerous."


12. Jin's General Who Conquers The Caitiffs, Huan Chong, was appointed as Inspector of Jiangzhou.

In the eleventh month, Yao Xiang's former officer, Zhang Jun, killed the Protector of Jiangzhou, Zhao Pi, and led his troops north in rebellion. Huan Chong marched against him and killed him.


When Huan Wen had routed Yao Xiang's forces (around Luoyang in 357), he captured several of his generals, including Zhang Jun and Yang Ning, and sent them to Xunyang.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:44 pm


The Second Year of Xingning (The Jiazi Year, 364 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, on the day Bingchen, a general amnesty was declared in Yan.


2. In the second month, Yan's Grand Tutor Murong Ping and General of Dragon Cavalry Li Hong marched into Henan.


3. In the third month, on the new moon of the day Gengxu, a census was taken in Jin. Everyone was recorded by their native territory, and strict laws and systems were imposed, which came to be called "The Gengxu System".


The census was taken of those who had relocated from the north and west to the southeast, so that they could be distinguished from the native inhabitants.

Some versions write "proscriptions" instead of "systems".


4. Emperor Ai of Jin trusted the words of a magician, wishing to take pills to extend his life. The Palace Attendant Gao Song remonstrated with him, saying, "This should on no account be done. What Your Majesty does is as clear as the eclipse of the sun or moon." The Emperor did not heed him. On the day Xinwei, the Emperor vomited up the pills, and became unable to attend to his duties. Empress Dowager Chu assumed command of the government.


The Analects say, "Zi Gong said, 'The faults of the superior man are like the eclipses of the sun and moon.'" (19.21)


5. In summer, the fourth month, on the day Jiachen, Yan's Li Hong attacked Xuchang and Runan, and defeated the Jin troops at Xuanhu. Jin’s Administrator of Yingchuan, Li Fu, was killed in battle, while the Administrator of Runan, Zhu Bin, fled to Shouchun, and the Administrator of Chenjun, Zhu Fu, fled to defend Pengcheng. Grand Commander Huan Wen sent the 西中郎將 Yuan Zhen and others to help defend, while he himself led boats to camp at Hefei. Yan gained control of Xuchang, Runan, and Chenjun, and relocated more than ten thousand of the households there to Youzhou and Jizhou. General Who Guards The South Murong Chen marched to camp at Xuchang.


The Commentary on the Water Classic says, "Xuanhu is a city administered by Runan commandary. Northwest of the city, there is a branch of the Ru River which flows northwest. It also turns to the west and east, and to the southwest it meets with the Ru River. The area resembles a gourd hanging upside down, and thus it is named Xuanhu ("Hanging Gourd")." 瓠 is pronounced "hu" or "hu".

Huan Wen had received several promotions in the fifth month of the last year, and now he was able to order around various other generals; his power had reached the same level as Yu Bing.


6. In the fifth month, on the day Wuchen, Jin's Inspector of Yangzhou, Wang Shu, was appointed as Prefect of the Masters of Writing. Grand Marshal Huan Wen was appointed as Governor of Yangzhou and granted authority over the imperial secretariat. On the day Renshen, the court sent an order for Huan Wen to return to advise the court, but Huan Wen did not come.


7. Whenever Wang Shu accepted office, he did not first vacuously decline it, as others always did when offered a position. When Wang Shu was appointed as Prefect of the Masters of Writing, his son Wang Tanzhi told him, "You ought to decline it." Wang Shu asked him, "You mean to say I would not be suited for it?" Wang Tanzhi said, "No, but you ought to decline it for appearance’s sake." Wang Shu replied, "Since you say I would be suited, then why should I decline it? People would say you won me over, and that would not do."


8. In the sixth month, Fu Jian sent his Minister Herald to Liang to confer upon Zhang Tianxi the Qin-granted titles of Grand General, Governor of Liang, and Duke of Xiping.


9. In autumn, the seventh month, on the day Dingmao, the Jin court again ordered Grand Marshal Huan Wen to return to court. In the eighth month, Huan Wen arrived at Zheqi. The court then sent an order for Huan Wen to halt, so Huan Wen took up residence at Zheqi. He declined to exercise authority over the secretariat, instead becoming acting Governor of Yangzhou.


Zheqi was within the borders of Xuancheng. The "Southern History" states, "Shen Youzhi advanced from Hukan Islet to attack Zheqi, and Tao Liang and others led troops from Quetou to assist." Liu Xu remarked, "What is in our time Nanling County in Xuanzhou was, during the Han dynasty, Chungu County. The Liang dynasty made it Nanling County, and it used to be administered from Zheqi. During the Tang dynasty's fourth year of Chang'an (704), the administrative center moved to Qingyang." According to Huan Wen's "Memorial", "Zheqi in Chungu County is on the east bank of the Yangzi, twenty li from Ruxukou, and three hundred thirty li from the palaces at Jiankang. To the south I may receive news, and to the north I may camp at Gao'an." 圻 is pronounced "qi (q-i)".


10. Qin's Duke of Runan, Fu Teng, plotted rebellion, but he was captured and executed. Fu Teng was Fu Sheng's younger brother. At that time, Fu Sheng's five other brothers, including the Duke of Jin Fu Liu, still held office. Wang Meng said to Fu Jian, "If you do not get rid of the five dukes, they will cause trouble someday." But Fu Jian did not heed him.


This was why Fu Liu and the others later rebelled.


11. Yan's Palace Attendant Mulong Yu went to Longcheng, and moved the ancestral temples and the remaining officials there to Ye.


12. Yan's Grand Governor Murong Ke planned to capture Luoyang. He first sent men to enlist the locals, and all the fortified places near and far submitted to him. Then he dispatched the Commander Yue Xi with an army to Meng Ford, and sent the Inspector of Yuzhou, Sun Xing, with another army to Chenggao.


Sima Guang comments in the 考異, "The 'Imperial Records' state, 'Murong Wei invaded Luoyang', and before that, they say, 'Fu Jian sent his various commanders to march into Henan.' Now according to the events of next year, after Murong Ke captured Luoyang, Fu Jian personally went to prepare defenses at Tong Gate, and he did not dare to contend with Yan for Henan. Fu Jian's biography in the 'Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms' does not mention such a thing either. I fear the 'Imperial Records' are mistaken."


13. Shen Jing was the son of the Jin officer Shen Chong, one of the rebel Wang Dun's former officers who had died during Wang's uprising. He wished to make a name for himself and so wipe away his father’s dishonor and establish himself in his family’s former position. At this time he was over thirty years old, but because of the punishment against his family, he could not hold office.


This part of Wang Dun's rebellion was mentioned in Book 93, in the second year of Taining (324) under Emperor Ming.

The Administrator of Wuxing, Wang Huzhi, was appointed as Inspector of Sizhou; he sent in a memorial outlining Shen Jing's talents, and asked that his ban on holding office be lifted, and that he serve as an advisor to Wang. The court assented. In the event, Wang Huzhi became sick and was unable to go.

When the Yan army placed Luoyang under siege, it was defended by the Champion General Chen You, although he did not have more than two thousand soldiers. Shen Jing requested forces to lead to relieve Chen You. The court appointed Shen Jing as Chief Clerk to the Champion General, and commissioned him with authority to recruit troops. After recruiting more than a thousand men, Shen Jing set out, and by a series of small attacks against the Yan forces, he was able to cut through.

Luoyang's stores of grain then ran low. Chen You did not believe he would be able to hold Luoyang on his own, so he wished to go to Xuchang to seek aid. In the ninth month, he left Shen Jing with five hundred men to hold Luoyang, while he marched east with the rest. Shen Jing happily said, "This is the day when I will achieve my ambition by sacrificing my life." When Chen You discovered that Xuchang had already fallen to Yan, he retreated to Xincheng. Yan's Yue Xi led his troops to capture the various cities south of the Yellow River, and they all fell into his hands.


The Analects state, "Zi Zhang said, 'The scholar, trained for public duty, seeing threatening danger, is prepared to sacrifice his life.'" (19.1) Zhuzi remarked upon that, "This means that he holds fast to his orders, even so that he lays down his life."


14. Fu Jian ordered the dukes to fill the Three Offices of their fiefs, letting them make their own selections for the other offices, and only reserving for himself the selection of the Prefects of Palace Attendants. Rich merchants, including Zhao Duo and others, all wore extravagant clothing and rode about in fine carriages, and the dukes all selected people such as them for their ministers. The Attendant of the Yellow Gate, Cheng Xian of Anding, informed Fu Jian of this development and asked him to deal with it. Fu Jian thereupon sent out an edict, saying, “I had wished for the Dukes to select men of heroic stature and Confucian learning, and yet they choose such men as these! I ought to order these officials to be examined, and those who do not measure up ought to be demoted to Marquises. By such means would we ensure that the state's officials are men of talents. From now on, artisans and merchants shall be forbidden the use of sumptuous carriages and banned from wearing gold-silver and brocade clothing. Those who violate this law will be executed in the marketplace!” The Dukes of Pingyang, Pingchang, Jiujiang, Chenliu, and Anle were all demoted to Marquis.


According to the system under Jin, royal fiefs each appointed their own Prefect of Palace Attendants, Central Commandant, and Minister of Finance. Qin thus had the same system.

Some versions add "said to Fu Jian" after "Cheng Xian".

"Gold-silver" here means the Supervisor of the Masters of Writing.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:49 pm


The Third Year of Xingning (The Yichou Year, 365 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, on the day Gengshen, Jin's Empress Wang passed away.


2. Liu Weichen once more turned against Dai. Tuoba Shiyijian crossed the Yellow River and attacked him, and drove him off.


It was mentioned how Liu Weichen had inclined towards Dai again earlier in this book, in the fifth year of Shengping (361).


3. Tuoba Shiyijian had a tolerant nature. His Prefect of Palace Attendants Xu Qian once stole two rolls of silk. When Tuoba Shiyijian learned of it, he did not reveal that he knew. He said to his Chief Clerk of the Left, Yan Feng, "I cannot bear to look upon Xu Qian's face. You must be careful not to reveal what you know. If he then feels ashamed and kills himself, it will have been my wealth that was the culprit."

When Tuoba Shiyijian was campaigning against rebels in the west, one shot him in the eye; after the archer had been captured, his ministers wanted to carve him up, but Tuoba Shiyijian said, “He was only following his own lord's orders; what was his crime?" And so he released him.


According to the "History of the Northern Dynasties", Dai was a coarse state without silks. In stealing silk, Xu Qian had committed an unpardonable crime. For Tuoba Shiyijian to forebear punishing him for that, the history demonstrates his generosity and tolerance.

Some versions add "you must be careful not to reveal what you know" after "I cannot bear to look at him".


4. Jin's Grand Marshal, Huan Wen, moved his base to Gushe. In the second month, on the day Yiwei, he placed his younger brother, the General of the Right Huan Huo, in charge of Jingzhou, Yicheng in Yangzhou, and Jingzhao in Yongzhou, and made him acting Inspector of Jingzhou. His brother Huan Chong, the Inspector of Jiangzhou, was also granted command of military affairs in the eight commandaries in Jingzhou and Yuzhou, and all of them were granted staffs of authority.


Huan Wen had transferred his base east from Zheqi to Gushu.

Yicheng commandary was split off from Xiangyang, and that commandary was part of Jingzhou, so Yicheng led Ping'a and Xiacai in Huainan in Yangzhou. When Huan Xuan had taken over from Zu Yue, he first fell back to Huainan, and later guarded Xiangyang. Tao Kan split off Yicheng commandary with Gucheng from Huainan, and it included the natives of Yangzhou as well as the people who had fled there, gathered together at Gucheng. Guzheng ruled the interior of Jingzhou, so it was called 'Jingzhou's and Yangzhou's Yicheng'. Those who lived in Gucheng were also called the Gucheng army, and so it received the name of a commandary. Later, people added 土 to the 成 character in the name, and it lost its original position as a commandary.

Jingzhao commandary was part of Yongzhou, but at this time those who had fled from there established themselves at Xiangyang.

Before this time, Huan Chong had administered Jiangzhou, and was acting Administrator of Xiyang and Qiao commandaries. He was now granted authority over Jiangxia and Sui commandaries in Jingzhou and Runan, Xiyang, Xincai, and Yingchuan commandaries in Yuzhou. These made six commandaries, and combined with his defense of Xunyang it made eight commandaries. Sima Guang comments in the 考異, "The 'Imperial Records' state, 'Huan Chong was the acting Colonel of Southern Man Tribes'. Left of the Yangzi, only in Jingzhou would there be a commander of the Southern Man. The 'Biography of Huan Chong' does not mention it either. The 'Records' thus make Huan Huo too important. I do not follow it."


5. When Jin’s Minister Over The Masses, Sima Yu, learned of Chen You's retreat from Luoyang, he originally met with Huan Wen at Liezhou, planning for a joint campaign to save the region. But on the day Bingshen, Emperor Ai passed away in the Western Hall, and this consumed all attention. The Emperor had left no heir, so the Empress Dowager ordered that the Prince of Langye, Sima Yi, be chosen. The officials all gathered to pay homage to the Prince of Langye, and that day, he rose to the imperial throne, and a general amnesty was declared.


At Gushu, there was a Mount Lie in the middle of the Yangzi; this was the place.

Emperor Ai was twenty-five when he died.

The Western Hall was the one in the Taiji Palace. Jiankang's Taiji Palace had Eastern and Western Halls. The Eastern Hall was for receiving the ministers, while the Western Hall was a place of repose.


6. In Qin, a general amnesty was declared, and the reign title was changed to Jianyuan.


7. Yan's Grand Governor Murong Ke and Prince of Wu Murong Chui jointly attacked Luoyang. Murong Ke said to his officers, "All of you have often resented that I did not attack. But although Luoyang has high walls, only now are their soldiers weak. The time is right, and let no one display cowardice or laziness!" They thereupon attacked the city. In the third month, they took it, and they captured Jin's General Who Displays Valor Shen Jing. Shen Jing displayed an arrogant attitude, but Murong Ke was inclined to pardon him. General of the Center Army Muyu Qian said, "Although he has unique talents, he is also ambitious. We would not be able to use him. If you pardon him today, he will certainly become a future threat." Murong Ke therefore executed Shen Jing.


8. Murong Ke then dispersed his forces to the Xiao mountains and the Mian River, which were close to the border with Qin. In Guanzhong there was general fear of this development. Fu Jian himself led troops to camp on the border at Shancheng.


9. In Yan, the 左中郎將 Murong Zhu was appointed as Inspector of Luozhou, and was stationed at Jinyong. The Prince of Wu, Murong Chui, was appointed as Commander over Jingzhou, Yangzhou, Luozhou, Xuzhou, Yanzhou, Yuzhou, Yongzhou, Yizhou, Liangzhou, and Qinzhou military affairs, and was named as Grand General Who Conquers The South and Governor of Jingzhou. In order to handle any eventuality, he was stationed at Lüyang.


10. When Murong Ke returned to Ye, he lamented to his officers, "Before, when I pacified Guanggu, I could not save Pilu Yu. And now, when I captured Luoyang, I could not employ Shen Jing's talents. Although neither was my original intention, in the end I am the army commander, and must consider the world within the four seas."

The Yan court honored Shen Jing's loyalty, and posthumously named him Administrator of Dongyang.


Pilu Yu was mentioned in the last book (Book 100), in Emperor Mu's twelfth year of Yonghe (356).


11. Your servant Sima Guang remarks: Shen Jing could truly be called an able son! With his death, he washed away his father's infamy, and transformed a traitorous family into a loyal one. The Book of Changes states, "In setting right what has been spoiled by the father, one meets with praise." (18.5) The Charge to Zhong of Cai states, "In order that you may cover the faults of your father, be loyal, be filial." (Book of Documents, Book of Zhou) Truly this can be said of Shen Jing!


In the 爻辭 of the 易‧蠱卦, in the 象 it says, "One who is able to surpass their father's reputation, does virtue."

The Charge to Zhong of Cai is in the Book of Documents.


12. When Murong Ke became a general, he did not rule through awe or sheer dignity, but employed grace and trust to win over and nurture his officers and his men, and attended to the larger details himself. He did not issue harsh orders, but sent every man to do what was simple for him to achieve. So his camps during that time were usually indulgent, as though there were no offenders. His guards became close to him, and if any enemy dared to come near, not one of them could lay a hand on him.


13. On the day Renshen, Emperor Ai and Empress Wang were buried together at Anping Tombs.


Empress Wang's posthumous name was 靜 Jing. The Book of Jin records it as 靖 Jing.


14. In summer, the fourth month, on the day Renwu, Yan's Grand Commandant and Duke Kuang of Wuping, Feng Yi, passed away. The Minister of Works Yang Wu was appointed as the new Grand Commandant. The Palace Attendant and Household Counsellor Huangfu Zhen was then appointed as the new Minister of Works and acting Palace Secretary. Yang Wu had served under four generations of rulers, and held great seniority; everyone from Murong Ke down respected him. He was further modest and courteous, and very kind, even to the young. He charged his sons and grandsons to never go against the law, even despite their honored heritage.


The "Laws of Posthumous Names" says, "One who lives with complete and wholehearted sincerity may be named Kuang ('Rectified')."

The four generations of rulers were Murong Hui, Murong Huang, Murong Jun, and Murong Wei.

Now Feng Yi had also served the Yan court for four generations; his honor and prestige surpassed that of Yang Wu, and his sons and grandsons were more highly esteemed than the Yang clan's were. How can it be that his modest virtues were ignored in the text in favor of Yang Wu's? It may have been because the historians had access to the biographical records of the Yang clan, while the Feng clan had failed to compile family records of their own.


15. In the sixth month, on the day Wuzi, Jin's Inspector of Yizhou and Count Xiang of Jiancheng, Zhou Fu, passed away. Zhou Fu had been in Yizhou for over thirty years, and held great prestige. The court ordered his son, the Administrator of Jianwei Zhou Chu, to take up his role.


The "Law of Posthumous Names" states, "One who has achievements may thus be named Xiang (‘Assist’ or ‘Help’)."

In Emperor Mu's third year of Yonghe (347), Huan Wen had conquered Shu, and left Zhou Fu there to guard it. From that year to this one, it had only been nineteen years. Before Jin had conquered Shu, their post of Inspector of Yizhou was at Badong, which was where Zhou Fu first became Inspector. When Huan Wen then conquered Shu, Zhou Fu naturally became its Inspector, and he was stationed at Pengmo. When the text says that Zhou Fu was in Yizhou for over thirty years, the historians are combining his time spent at Badong and his years at Pengmo.


16. In autumn, the seventh month, on the day Jiyou, the Prince of Kuaiji Sima Yu was advanced to the title Prince of Langye.


Emperor Yuan (Sima Rui) had originally named Sima Yu as Prince of Langye, which was a sign of special royal favor. In Emperor Cheng's first year of Xianhe (326), Sima Yu's birth mother Lady Zheng passed away. In order to mourn her, Sima Yu asked that his title be changed, and he was renamed as Prince of Kuaiji. After that time, both Emperor Kang and Emperor Ai had first possessed the title Prince of Langye and then went on to become Emperor.


17. On the day Renzi, Lady Yu became Empress. She was the daughter of Yu Bing.


18. On the day Jiashen, Sima Yu's son Sima Changming (Sima Yao) was offered the title Prince of Kuaiji. But Sima Yu declined that title for his son, and he continued to refer to himself as Prince of Kuaiji.


19. The Xiongnu Worthy Prince of the Right, Cao Gu, and the Worthy Prince of the Left, Liu Weichen, both rebelled against Qin. Cao Gu led twenty thousand men to attack Xingcheng. Fu Jian personally led an army against him, while leaving the Grand General Who Guards The Army, Li Wei, and the Deputy Director of the Left, Wang Meng, to guard the crown prince Fu Hong and defend Chang'an. In the eighth month, Fu Jian attacked Cao Gu, and defeated him. He killed Cao Gu's younger brother Cao Huo, and Cao Gu himself offered to surrender. Cao Gu and more than six thousand households were relocated. The General Who Establishes Fortitude, Deng Qiang, attacked Liu Weichen, and captured him at Mount Mugen.


Mount Mugen is in Shuofang.


20. In the ninth month, Fu Jian went to Shuofang, to patrol among the various tribes. In winter, the tenth month, Qin's General Who Conquers The North and Duke of Huainan, Fu You, took the remaining soldiers at Xingcheng to attack Chang'an. Li Wei fought and killed him.


Fu You was another of Fu Sheng's younger brothers.


21. Tufa Chuijin of the Xianbei passed away; he was a hundred and ten years old. His son Tufa Sifujian took his place in command of the army. Tufa Chuijin was the grandson of Tufa Shujineng's cousin Tufa Wuwan.


Tufa Shujineng's rebellion in Liangzhou is mentioned in the "Records of Emperor Wu of Jin".


22. Jin's Inspector of Liangzhou, Sima Xun, was cruel and fierce in administering his territory. He used disobedient language to his attendants, assistants, and the people of his province. He personally viewed executions, and at times even performed them himself by shooting arrows. He had long harbored ambitions of taking Shu for himself, but he feared Zhou Fu, and dared not act against him.

After Zhou Fu's death, Sima Xun gathered troops and rebelled. His Attendant Officer Yong Duan and the Marshal of Western Tribes, Kui Cui, both remonstrated with him, but Sima Xun killed them both. He declared himself the Governor of Liangzhou and Yizhou, and the Prince of Chengdu. In the eleventh month, Sima Xun led his soldiers through Jiange Pass, and attacked Fu. The Colonel of Western Tribes, Guanqiu Wei, fled the city. On the day Yimao, Sima Xun placed Zhou Chu under siege at Chengdu. Grand Marshal Huan Wen ordered the General of 鷹揚 and Chancellor of Jiangxia, Zhu Xu of Yiyang, to march west to rescue Chengdu.


The Marshal of Western Tribes was a subordinate officer of the Colonel of Western Tribes.

Jin's Colonel of Western Tribes had originally administered things from Wenshan, but now administered from Fu.


23. Fu Jian returned to Chang'an, and appointed Li Wei as Grand Commandant and Palace Attendant. He appointed Cao Gu as Duke of Yanmen, and Liu Weichen as Duke of Xiayang, and both were sent back to lead their armies.


24. In the twelfth month, on the day Wuxu, Jin's Master of Writing Wang Biaozhi was appointed as Deputy Director.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:51 pm


The First Year of Taihe (The Bingyin Year, 366 AD)


Emperor Fei's given name, 弈 Yi, now became taboo. His style name was Yanling, and he was Emperor Ai's younger brother by the same mother. He became Prince of Donghai in the eighth year of Xiankang (342), and became Prince of Langye in Emperor Mu's fifth year of Shenping (361). After he was on the throne, Huan Wen deposed him to be Duke of Haixi.


1. In spring, the third month, Jin's Inspector of Jingzhou, Huan Huo, sent the Protector Huan Pi to attack Nanzheng, as a campaign against Sima Xun.


2. Yan's Grand Guardian and Grand Marshal Murong Ke, and Grand Tutor and Minister Over The Masses Murong Ping, both offered to resign their powers over the government, offer their seals to Murong Wei, and retire, but he did not accept their suggestion.


3. In summer, the fifth month, on the day Wuyin, Empress Yu of Jin passed away.


4. Zhu Xu and Zhou Chu attacked Sima Xun and defeated him. They captured Sima Xun and his partisans, and sent them to Grand Marshal Huan Wen. Huan Wen beheaded them all, and sent the heads to Jiankang.


5. Tuoba Shiyijian sent his Chief Clerk of the Left, Yan Feng, to offer tribute to Yan.


6. In autumn, the seventh month, on the day Guiyou, Empress Yu of Jin was buried at Jingping Tombs.


Empress Yu's posthumous name was Xiao ("Filial").


7. Qin's General Who Upholds The State Wang Meng, General of the Front Yang An, General Who Displays Valor Yao Chang, and others to lead twenty thousand men on a raid into Jingzhou, and they attacked Nanxiang commandary. Jin’s Inspector of Jingzhou, Huan Huo, went to their relief. In the eighth month, the Jin army went to Xinye. The Qin army brought over ten thousand households from Anyang with them before returning.


During Han, Anyang County had been part of Hanzhong commandary. When Cao-Wei established Weixing commandary, Anyang became part of that. Jin abolished the commandary. Since Qin only attacked Nanxiang and then retreated, how could they have penetrated the country as far as to capture the people of Anyang? The Chronicles of the Book of Jin records the place as Hanyang, and says it was north of the Han River. The Chronicles must have the correct account.

使王猛、楊安等率眾二萬寇荊州北鄙諸郡,掠漢陽萬餘戶而還。(Jinshu 113.17)

[Fu Jian] sent Wang Meng, Yang An, and others with an army of twenty thousand to raid Jingzhou's northern border commandaries. They captured more than ten thousand households at Hanyang and then returned.


8. In the ninth month, on the day Jiawu, Jin declared an amnesty in Liangzhou and Yizhou.


Since Sima Xun's rebellion had been crushed, this was a special amnesty for his partisans and those he had compelled to assist him.


9. In winter, the tenth month, Sima Yu was further appointed as Prime Minister, and granted authority over the imperial secretariat. He was permitted to enter the court without hurrying, without needing to wait for his name to be announced, and without removing his sword.


10. Zhang Tianxi, the ruler of Liang, sent messengers to the border with Qin announcing he was cutting off ties with them.


Former Liang's ties with Qin were first mentioned in the last book (Book 100) in Emperor Mu's twelfth year of Yonghe (356).


11. Yan's General Who Nurtures The Army and Prince of Xiapi, Murong Li, invaded Yanzhou. He captured several commandaries in Lü and Gaoping, and left garrisons to hold them before returning.


12. It was earlier mentioned that Li Yan of Longxi had rebelled against Zhang Guan, and had surrendered his territory to Qin. However, he later reestablished ties with Zhang Tianxi.


Li Yan's rebellion in Longxi was mentioned in the last book (Book 100) in the eleventh year of Yonghe (355).

In the twelfth month, the Qiang chieftain Lian Qi and four thousand families from Lüeyang rebelled against Qin, declaring themselves Li Yan's followers. Li Yan accepted the role as their Governor, and he broke off from Qin and Liang.


The Chronicles of the Book of Jin records the Qiang rebel leader’s name as 斂岐 Lian Qi, but earlier in the Book of Jin, the "Biography of Zhang Tianxi" records it as 廉岐 Lian Qi. 斂 Lian was a surname among the Qiang.

羌廉岐自稱益州刺史,率略陽四千家背苻堅就李儼。(Jinshu 86.65)

The Qiang chieftain 廉岐 Lian Qi declared himself the Inspector of Yizhou. He led four thousand households from Lüeyang to rebel against Fu Jian and go over to Li Yan.

羌斂岐叛堅,自稱益州刺史,率部落四千餘家西依張天錫叛將李儼。(Jinshu 113.17)

The Qiang chieftain 斂岐 Lian Qi rose in rebellion. He declared himself the Inspector of Yizhou, and he led more than four thousand households of his people to submit to Zhang Tianxi's rebel general Li Yan.


13. Jin’s Protector of Nanyang, Zhao Yi, seized control of Wan and surrendered to Yan. The Administrator, Huan Dan, fled to defend Xinye. Yan sent the 南中郎將 Zhao Pan from Lüyang to garrison Wan.


宛 is pronounced "wan (w-an)".


14. Jin's Inspector of Xuzhou and Yanzhou, Yu Xi, was of an honored family line, and he and his brothers acted haughty. Grand Marshal Huan Wen envied them.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:56 pm


The Second Year of Taihe (The Dingmao Year, 367 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, because Yu Xi was unable to rescue Lü or Gaoping, he was removed from office.


Sima Guang comments in the 考異, "The 'Imperial Records' state that this month, because of Yu Xi's crime, he was exiled to the sea. But the 本傳 states that after Emperor Fei was deposed as the Duke of Haixi, only then was Yu Xi sent off to Hailing, and at this time he was merely stripped of his office."


2. In the second month, Yan's General Who Nurtures The Army and Prince of Xiapi, Murong Li, and General Who Guards The North and Prince of Yidu, Murong Huan, raided the Chile (Tiele) peoples.


3. In Qin, Wang Meng, the Administrator of Longxi Jiang Heng, the Administrator of Nan'an Shao Qiang of Nan'an, the General Who Displays Valor Yao Chang, and others led an army of seventeen thousand soldiers against Lian Qi. In the third month, Zhang Tianxi sent his General of the Front Yang Yu towards Jincheng, his General Who Conquers The East Chang Ju towards Zuonan, and his General Of Fierce Assault Zhang Tong towards Baitu, while he himself led an army of thirty thousand to camp at Cangsong, to campaign against Li Yan. Lian Qi's soldiers had all once served under Yao Yizhong, and when they heard his son Yao Chang had come, they all surrendered to him. Wang Meng marched on and attacked Lüeyang. Lian Qi fled to Baima. Fu Jian appointed Yao Chang as Administrator of Longdong.


遹 is pronounced "yu".

Zhang Gui had created Zuonan County, which was part of Jinxing commandary. Kan Yin's "Records of the Thirteen Provinces" states, "A hundred and forty li west of Shicheng lies the city of Zuonan. The Yellow River passes south of it, so it is also called Zuonan Ford."

The "Records of Jin" state, "Baitu County is part of Jincheng commandary." And in the "Records of the Thirteen Provinces" it says, "Sixty li west of Zuonan Ford lies the city of Baitu. The city is north of the great Yellow River, and is close enough to the river to be a crossing place."

Ever since the Han dynasty, Cangsong County was a part of Wuwei commandary. During Later Liang, Lü Guang renamed it to Changsong County.

Baima ("White Horse") was the homeland of the White Horse Di people.


4. In summer, the fourth month, Murong Chen raided Jingling. Jin’s Administrator Luo Chong attacked and defeated him.


5. Zhang Tianxi attacked Li Yan's two commandaries, Daha and Wushi, and took them. Chang Ju defeated Li Yan's soldiers at Kui Valley, and Zhang Tianxi advanced and camped at Zuonan. Li Yan, afraid, fled to hold out at Fuhan, and sent his nephew Li Chun to beg for forgiveness from Qin, and to ask for assistance. Fu Jian sent his General of the Front Yang An and General Who Establishes Valor Wang Fu to lead twenty thousand cavalry, and ordered Wang Meng to assist Li Yan.


Song Bai remarked, "In the eighteenth year of Zhang Jun's rule, he split off Wushi, Xingjin, and Guangwu to form Daha commandary. During the Tang dynasty, it became Daha County, as part of Hezhou. Zhang Jun also split off Didao County into Wushi commandary, which in our time is part of Xizhou."

Here, 夏 is pronounced "ha (h-a)".


6. Wang Meng sent Shao Qiang to pursue Lian Qi, and ordered Wang Fu to guard Houhe and Jiang Heng to guard Baishi. He himself went with Yang An to relieve Li Yan at Fuhan. Zhang Tianxi sent Yang Yu to offer battle east of Fuhan, and Wang Meng attacked and greatly routed him, killing or capturing seventeen thousand. Following this defeat, Zhang Tianxi and Wang Meng remained in a stalemate outside the city. Shao Qiang captured Lian Qi at Baima, and sent him along.


During Former Han, Baishi County was part of Jincheng commandary, and during Later Han it was part of Longxi commandary. Xian remarked, "Mount Baishi is in our modern Lanzhou." And Song Bai remarked, "Fenglin County in Hezhou was originally Baishi County during the Han dynasty. In the eighth year of Zhang Jun's rule, he renamed it to Yonggu County."

Wang Meng wrote to Zhang Tianxi stating, "I have an order to rescue Li Yan, but I am not ordered to fight Liangzhou. Now we find ourselves at this impasse, because I must heed my orders. If this continues, I fear both families will suffer, and no good will come of it. General, if your army will withdraw, I will take Li Yan and withdraw east, and your army may then move the people west; can this not be done?" Zhang Tianxi said to his officers, "Wang Meng means to tell me that I came to fight rebels, not to fight with Qin." So he led his soldiers away.


The two families were Qin and Liang.


7. Li Yan remained unaware of Wang Meng's plan. Wang dressed in white clothing, and went with several men to the city, asking to meet with Li Yan. Li Yan opened the gate and came out, but before he could make any defense, the soldiers blocked his path, and seized him. The General Who Founds Loyalty, Peng Yue, was appointed as General Who Pacifies The West and Inspector of Liangzhou, and he was stationed at Fuhan.


General Who Founds Loyalty was an office created by Former Qin.


8. After Zhang Tianxi's army had fallen back to the west, but before Li Yan went to see Wang Meng, Li Yan's general He Zhun said to him, "You have a martial spirit, and your officers and soldiers are valiant and fierce. Why do you wait here with folded hands? Wang Meng's meager army has traveled a long way to reach us, and his soldiers are still exhausted. Since they came here to answer our request for assistance, they certainly would not have prepared any defenses against us. If you were to attack them now, you might attain your ambition."

Li Yan replied, "We requested aid to avoid difficulties. If, having avoided them because of the aid, we now attack those who came to aid us, what will the realm say about me? Better to hold out until we turn grey, or else retreat."

After Li Yan was captured, Wang Meng spoke with Li Yan, and he mentioned He Zhun's proposal. Wang Meng put He Zhun to death, and allowed Li Yan to return. When Li Yan arrived at Chang'an, Fu Jian appointed Li Yan as Minister of the Household, and he was named as Marquis of Gui'an.


9. Yan’s Prince Huan of Taiyuan, Murong Ke, said to Murong Wei, "The Prince of Wu, Murong Chui, is a general of exceptional talent, ten times the man that I am. Since I was second in age after our late lord, he made use of me first. But after my death, I hope that Your Majesty will support the state by listening to the Prince of Wu."


The "Laws of Posthumous Names" states, "One who expands territory to distant places may be called Huan ('Grand' or 'Pillar')".

In the fifth month, on the day Renchen, Murong Ke became deathly ill. Murong Wei himself went to attend to him, and to listen to his final requests. Murong Ke said, "I have heard that there is no better way to repay the grace that one has received than to recommend a worthy man. A worthy man can become Chancellor even if he were some mere rampart builder, much less one of your own kin! The Prince of Wu's worth in both civil and military affairs is great, and he is second only to Guan Zhong and Xiao He. If Your Majesty places him in command of affairs, then the state will know peace. Otherwise, Qin and Jin will surely find some way to plot against us." Having said this, he passed away.


Murong Ke's comment is a reference to Fu Yue, the minister of the Shang dynasty's King Gaozong (Wu Ding), who was known for mingling among the common people. When Gaozong was still Prince of Yin, he discovered Fu Yue among his rampart builders, and ordered him to become his Chancellor.


10. When Fu Jian learned of Murong Ke’s death, he secretly plotted to conquer Yan. He wished to see whether or not Yan would now be ripe for the taking. So he ordered the Xiongnu chieftain Cao Gu to send a caravan of tribute to the Yan court, and sent along the Registrar of Western Rong Tribes, Guo Bian of Pingyi, to pose as his assistant.


Cao Gu was the Xiongnu's Worthy Prince of the Right, who had surrendered to Qin in the previous year after his failed rebellion.

Some versions list Guo Bian as being "of Pingyi".

Emperor Wu of Jin (Sima Yan) created the office of Colonel of Western Tribes at Chang'an, and Qin had kept this office; the Registrar of Western Tribes was its subordinate office.

Yan's Minister of Works, Huangfu Zhen, had an older brother, Huangfu Tian. Both he and Huangfu Zhen’s nephews, Huangfu Fen and Huangfu Fu, held office in Qin, with Huangfu Tian being the 散騎常侍. When Guo Bian reached Yan, he had meetings with each of the Yan ministers in turn. When he met with Huangfu Zhen, he said, "I am a native of Qin, but my family was executed by them; that is why I am now under Prince Cao's command. I bring you tidings from your honorable brother and your nephews in Qin, and they ask after you."


Although Huangfu Zhen held office in Yan, he was a native of Anding.

Huangfu Zhen angrily replied, "I have no dealings with foreign states; what matters this to me? Are you a villain, that you think I would respond to such false ties?" He reported the matter to Murong Wei and asked him to send the envoys away, but the Grand Tutor Murong Ping did not agree.

When Guo Bian returned to Qin, he said to Fu Jian, "The Yan court has no discipline; they are ripe to be attacked. The only knowledgable one we should be wary of is Huangfu Zhen." Fu Jian said, "How can it be that, in all their six provinces, there is not a single man of wisdom?"


Sima Guang comments in the 考異, "In Yan's eighth year of Jianxi (368), Huangfu Zhen became Grand Commandant. The Book of Yan, the Chronicles of the Book of Jin, and the 'Biography of Huangfu Zhen' all claim that when Guo Bian came to Yan on this mission, it was when Huangfu Zhen was the Grand Commandant. The 'Annals of Jin' says that it was in the eighth month of the tenth year of Jianxi (370). I fear that all these sources are wrong, and that the event was when Cao Gu surrendered to Qin."

...征還,拜侍中、光祿大夫,累遷太尉、侍中。苻堅密謀兼併,欲觀審釁隙,乃遣其西戎主簿郭辯潛結匈奴左賢王曹轂,令轂遣使詣鄴,辯因從之... (Jinshu 111.36-7)

When Huangfu Zhen returned from the campaign, he was appointed as Palace Attendant and Household Counselor, and then was also appointed Grand Commandant. Fu Jian secretly wished to conquer Yan, and he wanted to see how their defenses stood. So he sent his Registrar of Western Tribes, Guo Bin, to become close to the Xiongnu Worthy Prince of the Left, Cao Gu, and join him on a tribute mission to Yan. Guo Bin agreed to do so.

The six provinces which Yan controlled were Youzhou, Bingzhou, Jizhou, Sizhou, Yanzhou, and Yuzhou.


11. The Xiongnu chieftain Cao Gu passed away. Qin split his forces into two, with each half being led by one of his sons. The two halves were called the Eastern Cao and the Western Cao.


When Fu Jian split Cao Gu's army into two halves, he had more than twenty thousand of them remain west of the city of Ercheng, and sent Cao Gu's older son Cao Xi to lead them. He had the other half, again more than twenty thousand, remain east of Ercheng, and sent Cao Gu's younger son Cao Yin to lead them.


12. Jin's Inspector of Jingzhou, Huan Huo, and Administrator of Jingling, Luo Chong, attacked Wan and retook it. The defector general Zhao Yi fled Wan, and the Yan general Zhao Pan retreated to Lüyang. Huan Huo pursued Zhao Pan and attacked him at Zhicheng, where he captured him. He left a garrison at Wan before returning.


Ever since Han, Zhi County had been part of Nanyang commandary; the site was within the borders of Xiangcheng County in Dengzhou during the Tang dynasty. The "New Records of Tang" states, "Lüyang Gate was eighty li north of Xiangcheng County."


13. In autumn, the seventh month, Yan's Prince of Xiapi, Murong Li, and others attacked the Chile (Tiele) people again. They captured several tens of thousands of cattle and horses.


14. Earlier, when Murong Li's soldiers had passed through Dai (on their way to raid the Gaoche), they violated the corn millet fields there. This greatly angered Tuoba Shiyijian. Yan's General Who Pacifies The North and Duke of Wuqiang, Murong Ni, led troops from Youzhou to camp at Yunzhong. In the eighth month, Tuoba Shiyijian attacked Yuzhong, and Murong Ni abandoned the city and fled. Yan's General of 振威 Muyu Hexin died in battle.


穄 is another name for corn millet. In our time, people in the south call corn millet 穄. The northern regions are cold, and the five cereal crops (rice, two kinds of millet, wheat, and beans) cannot grow there. Only corn millet grows there, and this is what is called 穄. Xiang Anshi remarked, "There are two kinds of corn millet. The main type grows as large as foxtail millet, and it ripens in five months. This is what people in Jingzhou call corn millet, or they call it 穄. There is another type which grows especially tall and large, and its stalks are shaped like reeds, though they are actually more like 薏苡 (the Job's Tears plant). The people of Jing call this the 'invasive corn millet', or the 'reedy 穄'. It does not ripen until autumn, unlike the main type of corn millet."


15. In the ninth month, Jin's Interior Minister of Kuaiji, Chi Yin, was appointed as Commander of military affairs in Xuzhou, Yanzhou, Qingzhou, and Youzhou, as well as at Jinling in Yangzhou. He was appointed as Inspector of Xuzhou and Yanzhou, and he was stationed at Jingkou.


愔 is pronounced "yin (y-in)."

Chen Yue remarked, "During the Disaster of Yongjia, when the people of Jin fled from Youzhou, Jizhou, Qingzhou, Bingzhou, Yanzhou, and the part of Xuzhou north of the Huai River, they all crossed over the Yangzi at Jinling. In Emperor Cheng's fourth year of Xianhe (330), Chi Jian relocated all of the refugees who were south of the Huai River into the counties of Jinling commandary. Others who had crossed south of the Yangzi or had remained north of it all set up refugee commandaries and counties, with their own governors. There were still fingers of Jin control in Xuzhou and Yanzhou north of the Yangzi, and there were also still some of these refugee-established areas in Youzhou, Jizhou, Qingzhou, and Bingzhou."


16. Qin's Duke of Huainan, Fu You, again turned rebel. This time, he was joined in rebellion by the the Grand General Who Conquers The East, Governor of Bingzhou, and Duke of Jin, Fu Liu; and the Grand General Who Conquers The West, Inspector of Qinzhou, and Duke of Zhao, Fu Shuang. Since Fu Shuang was Fu Jian's younger brother by the same mother, and Fu Liu had been Fu Jiàn's beloved son, Fu Jian had not suspected them or inquired into their activities.

Fu Liu and Fu Shuang then enticed the General Who Guards The East, Inspector of Luozhou, and Duke of Wei, Fu Sou; and General Who Maintains The West, Inspector of Yongzhou, and Duke of Yan, Fu Wu, to join them as well. Fu Sou’s Registrar, Yao Tiao of Nan'an, remonstrated with him, saying, "You and our lord share the close kinship of Zhou and Shao, and you have accepted this border command. When the state is faced with difficulties, you ought to be exerting yourself to protect it, not adding to its woes!" Fu Sou did not listen.


Qin's Inspectors administered Bingzhou from Puban, Qinzhou from Shanggui, Luozhou from Shancheng, and Yongzhou from Anding.

Fu Sou and Fu Wu were both Fu Jiàn’s sons.

The Duke of Zhou had a brother, Ji Shi, whom he appointed as Duke of Zhao.

When Fu Jian learned of the planned rebellion, he ordered Fu Liu and the others to come to Chang'an. Instead, in winter, the tenth month, Fu Liu seized Puban, Fu Shuang seized Shanggui, Fu Sou seized Shancheng, and Fu Wu seized Anding. They all began to raise further troops in rebellion. Fu Jian sent messengers to them saying, "I treated each of you well up until now; what hardships made you rebel? If you halt at once, and disband your soldiers, then you may retain your former roles, and all will be as before”. He demanded a 'gnawed pear' from each of them as a sign of trust, but they all refused.


A pear is fragile, easy to bite into. It means that when relatives fought one another, it made the state weak and fragile, and weak against opportunistic enemies. So in demanding a gnawed pear from Fu Liu and the others, Fu Jian was demanding a sign of their trust in him.

Michael Rogers (The Chronicle of Fu Jian: A Case of Exemplar History) argues that, contrary to Hu Sanxing's literal interpretation, the phrase "gnawed pear" is an abbreviation of a blood-letting ceremony where one cuts the arm and scratches the face, as a pledge of faith, and not an actual pear.


17. The King of Dai, Tuoba Shiyijian, brought his troops to Shuofang to attack Liu Weichen. They needed to cross over the Yellow River to reach the Xiongnu. At that time, the river had not yet frozen, so Tuoba Shiyijian ordered reed ropes to be made to restrict the flow of water in the river. This soon caused the river to begin freezing into chunks of ice, but it was not yet firm, so he had the ropes distributed about and bound the chunks of ice together into a column, until it formed a floating bridge over the river. The Dai soldiers then crossed over it. Liu Weichen did not expect for the Dai soldiers to arrive so suddenly, so he fled west with his family. Tuoba Shiyijian captured sixty to seventy percent of his soldiers before returning to Dai. Liu Weichen fled to Qin, where Fu Jian sent him back to Shuofang, along with soldiers to defend it.


When Dai attacked the Xiongnu in Shuofang, they crossed west over the Yellow River, and they named the crossing place Junzi Ford.


18. In the twelfth month, on the day Jiazi, Yan's Grand Commandant and Duke Jing of Jianning, Yang Wu, passed away. Huangfu Zhen was appointed as the new Palace Attendant and Grand Commandant, and the Household Counsellor Li Hong became the new Minister of Works.


The "Laws of Posthumous Names" states, "One who acts well and in accordance with the laws, or one who remains vigilant day and night, may be called Jing ('Respected')."
Last edited by Taishi Ci 2.0 on Mon Apr 03, 2017 6:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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BOOK 101

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:05 pm


The Third Year of Taihe (The Wuchen Year, 368 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, Fu Jian sent General of the Rear Yang Chengshi and General of the Left Mao Song to march against Shanggui and Anding. He sent General Who Upholds The State, Wang Meng, and General Who Establishes Fortitude, Deng Qiang, to attack Puban. He sent General of the Front, Yang An, and General Who Spreads Valor, Zhang Qi, to attack Shancheng. Fu Jian ordered the Puban and Shancheng armies to fortify themselves thirty li from the cities, hoard supplies and avoid battle, and wait until Qinzhou and Yongzhou were first pacified, so that their forces could be used as well.


2. Before, when Murong Ke became ill, because he believed that Murong Wei was young and weak, he feared that the state would not be attended to. He believed that Murong Ping was too paranoid, and feared that the role of Grand Marshal would not be granted to a suitable man. So he said to Murong Wei's older brother, the Prince of Anle Murong Zang, "At the moment, Jin is established in the south, and Qin is strong in the west. Both these states harbor ambitions to expand and conquer, and our state has not yet escaped from this danger. Whether our state shall rise or fall depends upon the ministers charged with guarding it. The post of Grand Marshal commands six armies; it cannot be given to an unsuitable man.

“After my death, it will up to your and your brother Murong Chong to pass on my words. Although you are talented and knowledgeable, you are still young, and you cannot yet bear the many hazards of office. The Prince of Wu is a man of outstanding talent and heroism, with surpassing wisdom and resourcefulness. If you are able to make him the Grand Marshal, he will be able to bring peace to all the realm within the four seas, much less merely protect us against invasion. Then there will be no cause for concern. Be careful not to chase profits and neglect wounds; the state will not benefit from it."


To chase profits and neglect wounds means one who seeks personal gain by gathering military influence, such as by claiming the mantle of Grand Marshal, but by their neglect brings about the downfall of their state and the destruction of their family.

Murong Ke gave the same advice to Murong Ping. But after Murong Ke's death, Murong Ping did not follow his advice. In the second month, he appointed the General of Chariots and Cavalry, the Prince of Zhongshan Murong Chong, as Grand Marshal. Murong Chong was Murong Wei's younger brother. Murong Chui, who was then Inspector of Jingzhou and Prince of Wu, was appointed as Palace Attendant and Grand General of Chariots and Cavalry, with equal power to the Three Excellencies.


This was the source of Murong Ping's and Murong Chui's dissension.


3. Qin's Duke of Wei, Fu Sou, sent a message from Shancheng offering submission to Yan, and asking for reinforcements. The people of Qin, greatly afraid, gathered troops to defend Huayin.


Huayin County was west of Shancheng, and the pass at Tong Gate was there.


4. Yan's Intendent of Wei, the Prince of Fanyang, Murong De, sent in a memorial stating, "Our late lord received Heaven's mandate, and had ambitions of pacifying the six directions; as his heir, Your Majesty should continue his work. Now the Fu clan is rotting from the inside, torn by divisions, and split into five parts. Take the offered cities into hand, turning first one way and then the other, and Heaven will deliver Qin into Yan's grasp. If you do not obey Heaven's wish, then you invite a disaster of our own: the example of Wu and Yue of old is sufficient proof. You need only move. Order Huangfu Zhen to lead the troops of Bingzhou and Jizhou to relieve Puban, the Prince of Wu Murong Chui with the troops of Xuzhou and Luozhou to break the siege of Fu Sou, and the Grand Tutor Murong Ping to lead the capital troops to act as a reserve for the two armies. Proclaim your intentions to restore order to the Three Regions (around Chang’an). Offer suitable rewards, and those on the other side are sure to flock to your banner. No need to linger here!"


Since the Yan capital Ye was in Wei, Yan called the Administrator of Wei the Intendant.

The five parts were the five areas each under control of a different member of the Qin royal family: Puban, Shancheng, Shanggui, Anding, and the capital Chang'an.

In the "Discoures of the States", Fan Li of Yue said, "Before, Heaven bestowed Yue to Wu, but Wu did not dare to take it. Now, Heaven bestows Wu to Yue, and Yue must not go against Heaven's will!"

At that time, many people in Yan were asking for Shancheng to be reinforced, as a step towards conquering Guanzhong. But Murong Ping said, "Qin is a great state; although it is currently facing difficulties, it will not be easily conquered. Although ‘the court’ is wise, he does not yet compare with our late emperor; though we his ministers are resourceful, we cannot yet compare with the Grand Governor (Murong Ke). But so long as we defend our territory, pacifying Qin will have nothing to do with us."


People in Yan called their ruler "the court".


5. Qin's Duke of Wei, Fu Sou, wrote to Murong Chui and Huangfu Zhen saying, "Fu Jian and Wang Meng are more than ordinary men. They are plotting Yan's imminent destruction. If you do not seize this opportunity now, I fear that soon, Yan's lords, ministers, and generals will experience ‘the regret of Yongdong’!"


According to the Zuo Commentary, "When Wu invaded Yue, the Count of Yue held out at Kuaiji. He offered to make peace with Wu, and the Count of Wu accepted it. His vassals objected to this, but were ignored. Later, when Yue invaded Wu, they demanded that the King of Wu be exiled to Yongdong. The King of Wu lamented, ‘I am old, and not suited to the affairs of a king. I regret that I did not follow my vassals' earlier advice, or else it would not have come to this!’ And he hanged himself." Jia Kui remarked, "Yongdong is a vulgar place in Yue, in the Southland." The 索隱 states, "It is the same as our modern Mao County." 甬 is pronounced "yong (y-ong)."

Murong Chui said to Huangfu Zhen, "Our true enemy is Qin, and our lord would do well to remember the Spring and Autumn Annals. But so long as he listens to the Grand Tutor, how will we be able to fight Fu Jian and Wang Meng?" Huangfu Zhen replied, "Although we both know it, what use is it to say?"


6. In the third month, on the new moon of the day Dingsi, there was a lunar eclipse.


7. On the day Guihai, there was a general amnesty declared in Jin.


8. Qin's Yang Chengshi inflicted several defeats upon Fu Shuang's general Gou Xing, while Mao Song did the same to Fu Wu. Both of them fled. Fu Jian once more sent the Guard General of Valor Wang Jian, the General Who 寧朔 Lü Guang, General Guo Jiang of Pingyi, Di Nu, and others with thirty thousand troops to campaign.

In summer, the fourth month, Fu Shuang and Fu Wu marched with their remaining troops to Yumei, with Gou Xing commanding their vanguard. Wang Jian wished to attack at once. Lü Guang said, "Guo Xing is newly spirited, and his men’s morale is quite high. We should not be hasty to attack. Once his grain is exhausted he must retreat, and then we may pursue him and attack without worry!" After twenty days, Guo Xing retreated. Lü Guang said, "Now we may attack him." So they pursued, and Guo Xing was defeated. They then attacked Fu Shuang and Fu Wu, and greatly routed them, capturing or killing fifteen thousand. Fu Wu fled to Anding, and from there fled along with Fu Shuang to Shanggui. Wang Jian and the others moved forward and attacked.


9. Qin's Duke of Jin, Fu Liu, several times marched out to offer battle, but Wang Meng refused him. Fu Liu began to believe that Wang Meng feared him.

In the fifth month, Fu Liu left his son Fu Liang to guard Puban, while he led twenty thousand soldiers west to attack Chang'an. When he was a hundred li out from Puban, Deng Qiang led a night raid against him with seven thousand elite cavalry, and defeated him. Fu Liu led his army back, but Wang Meng marched to intercept him, and he was struck from both sides. Fu Liu escaped into the city with a few hundred riders, and Wang Meng and Deng Qiang marched forward to assault the city.


10. In autumn, the seventh month, Wang Jian and the others captured Shanggui. They killed Fu Shuang and Fu Wu, but spared their wives and children. The Guard General of the Left, Fu Ya, was appointed as Inspector of Qinzhou. In the eighth month, the Duke of Changle, Fu Pi, was appointed as Inspector of Yongzhou.


11. In the ninth month, Wang Meng and the others captured Puban. They executed Fu Liu and his wife and children. Wang Meng remained camped at Puban, while he sent Deng Qiang, Wang Jian, and the others to attack Shancheng.


12. The nobility and high officials of Yan kept many commoners on their personal fief, and the state's official household rolls began to shrink compared to these private household rolls. The public grain stores were used up, and public expenses could not be covered from taxes.


According to the system under Jin, government ministers were divided into nine ranks. Each rank had its own pay and occupied its own measure of land, and each rank had varying degrees of people working as private workers on its land. Many of these households were enlisted to the ninth degree, while some were only two generations. Royal family members, honored guests of the state, worthy sages, and the descendants of the gentry were also the same way: each had some of these private families to provide them with clothing and food or to work their fields.

The Deputy Director of the Left of the Masters of Writing and Duke of Guangxin, Yue Wan, said, "The realm is currently split into three, and each side seeks to swallow up the others. Currently, our state's administration is not functioning well. The venal nobility are seeking their own profits, to the extent of exhausting the efforts of the people. Funds of office have not been contributed, the salaries of state officials have been halted, and food supplies to the soldiers have been halted, while ministers help themselves to grain and silks for their own personal enrichment. Even ignoring the threat posed by our neighbors, this is no way to run a government. The keeping of people on private fiefs should cease at once, and they should all be returned to their former commandaries and counties."


The three sides were Yan, Jin, and Qin.

Murong Wei agreed, and he sent Yue Wan to implement the reforms. Yue Wan uncovered the villainous ministers, and no one dared to conceal anything from him. He thus restored over two hundred thousand people to the public rolls, but earned the ire of the court officials. Yue Wan had been sick, and in his exertions to restore the public census rolls, his illness worsened. In winter, the eleventh month, he died.


13. In the twelfth month, Wang Meng and the others retook Shancheng. Fu Sou was captured and sent to Chang'an. Fu Jian asked him why he had rebelled. Fu Sou replied, "I originally had no intention of rebelling. But when my brothers and cousins plotted their uprising, I feared I would be killed, and so I went along." Fu Jian wept and said, "To preserve your life, you did not heed your heart. Yet it cannot be that Emperor Gaozu will have no descendents." So he compelled Fu Sou to take his own life, but he spared his seven sons. Fu Sou’s eldest son Fu Xi was named Duke of Wei, and the others were also granted ducal titles, in order to prevent cutting off the line of Fu Sheng and Fu Jian’s other cousins.


Gaozu was Fu Jiàn's temple name.

Empress Dowager Gou asked him, "Your cousin Fu Sou and your brother Fu Shuang both rebelled. Yet Fu Shuang along has not had his children redeemed. Why is this?" Fu Jian answered, "Among us, Emperor Gaozu established the realm, and I cannot cut off his descendants. But when it comes to Zhongqun, I cannot follow your wishes. He plotted to bring danger to the royal family. I cannot ignore the laws of the realm for the sake of personal feelings."


Fu Shuang's style name was Zhongqun.

Fu Jian appointed the Duke of Fanyang, Fu Yi, as Grand General Who Conquers The East and Inspector of Bingzhou, and stationed him at Puban. Deng Qiang was appointed as General Who Establishes Valor and Inspector of Luozhou, and he was stationed at Shancheng. Fu Sou’s advisor Yao Tiao, who had warned him against rebellion, was promoted as Administrator of Jijun.


14. Grand Marshal Huan Wen was honored with exceptional ceremony, and his position was like the old feudal lords.


15. During this year, the Duke of Chouchi Yang Shi was appointed as Jin's Inspector of Qinzhou, and his younger brother Yang Tong as Administrator of Wudu. Yang Shi also declared himself a vassal of Qin, and they appointed him as Inspector of Southern Qinzhou.
"You have attacked us before, and we survived! You cannot defeat us. Submit!"
"We have. You did. We can. No."
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