Differences between Three Kingdoms novel and history…

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Differences between Three Kingdoms novel and history…

Unread postby James » Thu Jan 02, 2003 9:36 am

Greetings everyone, someone wrote in with a request that I actually think is a wonderful idea. She asked if we could maintain a list of differences between the novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms (San Guo Yan Yi) and actual history (San Guo Zhi, for example).

As additions are made to this new project I will include a detailed list below. If enough people are interested I will post to other forums as well and will keep it updated across sites. If one of us feels an addition to the list is incorrect, it can be debated and then updated, confirmed, or removed. Hopefully down the road this will become a very useful resource for those of us that cannot read the San Guo Zhi. If you have a moment, also include the source (e.g. SGZ – Liu Bei), but that is not required and there is no need to worry about finding it.

:arrow: Guan Yu didn't defeat Hua Xiong at the Fan Shui Guan, Sun Jian did.

:arrow: Zhou Cang was fictional.

:arrow: Han Xuan was historically a very nice and quiet man. However in the novel he was very rude and mean.

:arrow: In the novel Guan Yu adopts Guan Dong's son, Guan Ping as his own. However, historically it's never mentioned that the adoption took place.

:arrow: There is no historical record of Cao Cao slaughtering Xuzhou's citizens on the march towards Tao Qian's castle. There is mention of the massacre during his withdrawal from the province, however.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang didn't "borrow" the arrows from Cao Cao. It was Sun Quan who had his boats shot at by Cao, then decided to turn the boats around to collect arrows to prevent the boats from capsizing. (SGZ -- Sun Quan)

:arrow: Zhou Yu wasn't the petty fellow who was jealous of Zhuge Liang at every turn. In fact, he was known for his generosity and bigness of heart. (SGZ -- Zhou Yu)

:arrow: Lady Sun wasn't the dedicated wife that she was. In fact, she terrorised the neighbourhood so much when she crossed the River with Liu Bei that Liu Bei had to get Zhao Yun to make sure that she didn't wreak havoc. (SGZ -- Zhao Yun, also in Fa Zheng's bio I think?)

:arrow: Diao Chan wasn't real; only "a serving maid" was mentioned as being a source of conflict between Dong Zhuo and Lü Bu. (SGZ -- Lü Bu)

:arrow: Xu Shu didn't go over to Cao Cao because of a feigned letter by Cheng Yu -- he went over sometime during the Changban battles (SGZ – Zhuge Liang).

:arrow: Guan Xing was really a civil administrator not a warrior.

:arrow: It was Ma Chao's fault his father was killed, becuase of his attack against Cao Cao.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang didn't participate in military until after Liu Bei's death.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang couldn't do "magic"

:arrow: Huang Gai thought up the fire plan at Chi Bi

:arrow: Pan Zhang either died of natural causes or illness; his SGZ bio only mentions the year he died. And according to ZZTJ, he was still alive after Liu Bei lost at Yi Ling, so Guan Xing didn't kill him during the battle.

:arrow: Tai Shi died before the Battle of ChiBi.

:arrow: Hua Tuo died in 208 AD, the one who healed Guan Yu's arm was some other doctor.

:arrow: the lead person in "dan dao yan" was Lu Su, not Guan Yu.

:arrow: Yang Xiu died after Liu Bei’s invasion of HanZhong, not during it.

:arrow: Zhang Bao died before Zhang Fei.

:arrow: Huang Zhong was not involved in the Battle of YiLing; he died before it happened.

:arrow: Sima Yi didn’t defeat Ma Su at Jieting. Zhang He did. Sima Yi was not involved in defending against the northern campaigns of Kong Ming until the forth and fifth campaign.

:arrow: "Kong cheng ji" was used by Wen Pin to trick the Wu's army; Zhuge Liang did not use it on Sima Yi

:arrow: Liu Cong was not Lady Cai's son, but rather he was married to one of her nieces. Most likely Cai Mao's daughter.

:arrow: Cai Mao was more of a civil officer rather than a naval commander.

:arrow: Chen Deng was a good general, not like the little weasel shown in SGYY. He defeated Sun Ce, perhaps even twice.

:arrow: Lady Mi was not Liu Bei’s wife, more like his mistress. However she died years before Liu Bei was defeated in DangYang.

:arrow: Liu Bei’s troops at YiLing was more like 40,000 to 80,000 rather than 700,000.

:arrow: Liu Bei was 24 years old when he was suppressing the Yellow Turban Rebellion, not 28 years old.

:arrow: Guan Yu did not ask Cao Cao for any promises when he surrendered at XiaPi.

:arrow: Lu Su was a military commander, not a civil officer.

:arrow: Cao Cao had 25 sons instead of only 5 (Ang, Pi, Zhang, Zhi and Xiong), and Cao Yu was Cao Cao's son, not Cao Pi.

:arrow: Liu Bei had more children than the three mentioned in SGYY (Shan, Li and Yong). He had daughters that were captured by Cao Chun at ChangBan slope.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang did not use any trick to capture JiangLiang and XiangYang after the battle of ChiBi. It was Zhou Yu who spent one year capturing them.

:arrow: Pang Tong was not capable in governing LiYang province.

:arrow: Gan Ning was not killed during the Battle of YiLing by Shamoke.

:arrow: Xu Huang was not killed by Meng Da.

:arrow: Wang Lang was not killed during Zhuge Liang’s first Northern Expedition.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang never argued with the southern scholars during his visit to Wu before the great battle of Chi Bi. The only incident remotely confrontational between the Wu and Shu scholars was an event during the visit of Shu's envoy Zhang Feng.

:arrow: Wei Yan never left Liu Cong when Liu Bei came to Xiang Yang. He also never killed Han Xuan to save Huang Zhong. Han Xuan surrendered ChangSha by himself.

:arrow: Wei Yan served under Zhang Fei for a brief period of time before Liu Bei took Han Zhong, and was highly regarded for his intellect by Fei.

:arrow: The Nanman rebelled twice more after Zhuge Liang pacified them.

:arrow: In the novel Zhou Yu wanted to pretend to take Yi Zhou to try to take Jing Zhou from Liu Bei, but in SGZ Zhou Yu did plan to take Yi Zhou, marching from Jiang Ling; in his bio it never indicates he had any plans to take Jing Zhou. He died of illness when he was preparing for the invasion. Whether he died because of the earlier wounds are not specified. After Zhou Yu's death, Lu Su convinced Sun Quan to borrow Jiang Ling to Liu Bei because he thought no one else could carry out the invasion on Yi Zhou but Zhou Yu.

:arrow: Pang Tong did not convince Cao Cao to tie the ships together during Chi Bi, Cao Cao decided to do that himself because many soldiers were ill.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang didn’t defeat Xiahou Dun at Xinye, Liu Bei did.

:arrow: In the novel Ma Chao defeated Zhong Yao and took Chang An before getting defeated by Cao Cao. In SGZ there’s no indication of Ma Chao ever taking Chang An. And Ma Chao never duelled Xu Chu or Zhang Fei in history.

:arrow: In history, Wu was the main aggressor towards Wei, unlike how it seems in the novel. After Liu Bei’s death, Shu was not considered a threat by Wei until Kongming attacked.

:arrow: Liu, Guan and Zhang were not sworn brothers.

:arrow: Guan Yu only killed Yan Liang, but Wen Chou was killed by Cao Cao's plot.

:arrow: Cao Cao became Prime Minister during the 6th month of Jian An 13th Year (208 A.D.), not before that.

:arrow: Xun You was not "killed" by Cao Cao, he died of illness.

:arrow: Jiang Gan never visited Zhou Yu during the battle of ChiBi.

:arrow: Zhuge Liang never captured Zhang Ren.

:arrow: It wasn't Zhuge Liang that was the advisor during HanZhong campaign; it was Fa Zheng.

:arrow: There were only 5 northern campaigns by Zhuge Liang. The campaign where he trapped Sima Yi and his sons at HuLu pass was fictional.

:arrow: Although Zhou Yu and Han Ze both advised Sun Quan to keep Liu Bei hostage during the time Bei came to Wu, nothing was attempted and Liu Bei left Wu without any incident.

:arrow: Sun Quan only sent Zhuge Jin to dissuade Liu Bei from attacking Wu months before the invasion of YiLing. There was never any offer to give back anything by Sun Quan. There were no envoys sent by Wu after Liu Bei’s march. However, Wu did send someone after Liu Bei retreated to BaiDi city.

:arrow: Guan Yu didn’t go through five passes and kill six generals when he left Cao Cao, no intervention was recorded in his return to Liu Bei.

:arrow: Guan Yu didn’t use the flood to defeat Yu Jin’s armies, the flood happened by accident.

:arrow: Xu Shu helping Liu Bei defeat Cao Ren and Li Dian at Xin Ye didn’t happen. Liu Bei’s SGZ bio only mentions Xiahou Dun and Yu Jin invading Xin Ye and defeated by Liu Bei; no Cao Ren invasion was mentioned. Only mention of Cao Ren attacking Liu Bei was during the battle of Guan Du, Yuan Shao sent Liu Bei to raid Yin Jiang, and Cao Ren defeated Liu Bei and quelled the rebellious prefectures before returning.

:arrow: Guan Yu letting Cao Cao go at Hua Rong pass never happened.

:arrow: In the novel Lu Meng pretended to be sick to trick Guan Yu, in history he really was sick.

:arrow: In the novel, right after Liu Bei’s death, Shu was invaded from five routes organized by Sima Yi (Cao Zhen, Meng Da, Xijiang, Nanman, and Wu) and all stopped by Kong Ming, in history that never happened. Wei didn’t even pay attention to Shu until Kong Ming started his campaigns.

:arrow: In Kong Ming’s northern campaigns, the whole episode of Kong Ming using the Wooden Oxs to trick Wei forces was made up. He only used those to transport supplies.

:arrow: Zhang Liao died of illness in AD 222. He was not shot in the crotch by an arrow.

:arrow: Zhang He warned Sima Yi of an ambush but was commanded by Sima Yi to pursue the enemy when he was killed, not warned by Sima Yi but went anyway.

:arrow: The Yellow Turban Rebellion was a lot more organized and a lot more effective than the book makes it seem; there was an underground society even going (or at least the goal) that was called something like the Five Bushels [of grain for every person] Society. . .

:arrow: There was no big evil black snake omen at the end of the Han dynasty. In fact, there were no big evil omens.

:arrow: I've heard somewhere that not only was Sun Shang Xiang a commanding wife who scared and ordered Liu Bei around, but that when Liu Bei died, she simply returned to Wu, and did not commit suicide; that LGZ changed it to represent the "virtuous woman".

:arrow: Taishi Ci - Died of natural causes in 203, novel lists death in battle at 215

:arrow: Zhu Ran - Died of natural causes some time after 230, novel lists death in battle at 222

:arrow: Song Qian - Died of natural causes some time after 222, novel lists death in battle at 215

:arrow: Hao Zhao - Died of illness at an unknown date, novel lists death due to illness at an earlier date

:arrow: Gongsun Yue - Died in battle against Yuan Shao's forces while assisting Sun Jian, novel lists death due to assassination

:arrow: Zu Mao - Died of illness some time after 190, novel lists death in battle due at 190

:arrow: Xue Li - Killed by Ze Rong, novel lists death in battle against Sun Ce's forces instead

:arrow: Ze Rong - Killed by Liu Yao, novel lists death in battle against Sun Ce's forces instead

:arrow: Mi Fang - Died of natural causes after 223, novel lists death in 222

:arrow: Lu Meng, also, died of illness. He was not possessed.

:arrow: In the novel Jiang Wei committed suicide after Shu’s fall. In history he was killed by Wei soldiers after him and Zhong Hui’s rebellion failed, as their acts weren’t supported by their own soldiers.
Last edited by James on Thu Feb 06, 2003 1:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postby Kong Renkuai » Thu Jan 02, 2003 6:16 pm

A list has already been made at SoC for this. I will see if I can dig it up.
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Sun Jan 05, 2003 9:02 am

Here's the Chinese version from an article taken from www.guoxue.com that includes the level of accuracy (as perceived by the compiler). It'll take sometime to translate to English but I think it's quite complete since it analyses chapter-by-chapter for the entire volume of SGYY.

http://www.guoxue.com/xstj/sgdc/sgdc2.htm
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Unread postby rcsha » Tue Jan 07, 2003 12:03 am

Well here's a few for you:
1. Guan Yu didn't defeat Hua Xiong at the Fan Shui Guan, Sun Jian did.
2. Guan Yu's little gofer Zhou Cang isn't real.
3. Hua Xin (I belive was his name) was historically a very nice and quiet man. However in the novel he was very rude and mean.
4. In hte novel Guan Yu adtops Guan Dong's son, Guan Ping as his own. However, historically it's never mentioned the the adoption took place.
5. There is no historical record of Cao Cao slaughtering Xuzhou's citizens on the march towards Tao Qian's castle.

Heh, the first off the top of my head, lol.
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Unread postby Lady Wu » Tue Jan 07, 2003 1:18 am

While people are busy digging up old lists, here's my 5, off the top of my head:
1. Zhuge Liang didn't "borrow" the arrows from Cao Cao. It was Sun Quan who had his boats shot at by Cao, then decided to turn the boats around to collect arrows to prevent the boats from capsizing. (SGZ -- Sun Quan)
2. Zhou Yu wasn't the petty fellow who was jealous of Zhuge Liang at every turn. In fact, he was known for his generousity and bigness of heart. (SGZ -- Zhou Yu)
3. Lady Sun wasn't the dedicated wife that she was. In fact, she terrorised the neighbourhood so much when she crossed the River with Liu Bei that Liu Bei had to get Zhao Yun to make sure that she didn't wreak havoc. (SGZ -- Zhao Yun, also in Fa Zheng's bio I think?)
4. Diao Chan wasn't real; only "a serving maid" was mentioned as being a source of conflict between Dong Zhuo and Lü Bu. (SGZ -- Lü Bu)
5. Xu Shu didn't go over to Cao Cao because of a feigned letter by Cheng Yu -- he went over sometime during the Changban battles (I think this is from ZGL's bio?).
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Tue Jan 07, 2003 3:51 am

Lady Wu wrote:5. Xu Shu didn't go over to Cao Cao because of a feigned letter by Cheng Yu -- he went over sometime during the Changban battles (I think this is from ZGL's bio?).

Quite true. Xu Shu went over to Wei when Cao Cao's army advanced south. When Xu Shu's mummy was captured by Cao Cao's soldiers, Xu Shu lost his heart to support the "Han"'s cause. All these were mentioned in Zhuge Liang's SGZ biography by Chen Shou. :D
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Unread postby Shadowlink » Tue Jan 07, 2003 9:20 pm

most for the people in china know that guan ping was adopted they do not need to put it in the film.
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Unread postby Kong Renkuai » Tue Jan 07, 2003 9:59 pm

Sadly, the list at SoC was deleted by Nandezx or Jimayo during their pruning period.

1) Guan Xing was really a civil administrator not a warrior.
2) It was Ma Chao's fault his father was killed, becuase of his attack against Cao Cao.
3) Zhuge Liang didn't participate in military until after Liu Bei's death.
4) Zhuge Liang couldn't do "magic" :P
5) Huang Gai thought up the fire plan at Chi Bi
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Unread postby Zhou Tai » Tue Jan 07, 2003 10:44 pm

Question: If Guan Xing was not a warrior? how could he of killed Pan Zhang and claim Guan Yu's weapon back, or did he pursue and no i dont believe in the Guan Yu ghost theory.

Guan Suo, also made up i believe....no historical data.
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Unread postby Jimayo » Tue Jan 07, 2003 11:28 pm

Zhugeliang wrote:most for the people in china know that guan ping was adopted they do not need to put it in the film.


No, he wasn't. That never happened. Guan Ping was his real son.
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