Zizhi Tongjian: The Jin Dynasty (Part 2)

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BOOK 106

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Sun May 14, 2017 6:21 pm


The Eleventh Year of Taiyuan (The Bingxu Year, 386 AD)


1. In spring, the first month, on the day Wushen (February 20th), Tuoba Gui held a great meeting of his supporters at Niuchuan. He declared himself King of Dai, and he changed the reign era title to Dengguo.

Tuoba Gui appointed Zhangsun Song as Southern Chieftain and Shusun Puluo as Northern Chieftain, and each of them administered their own forces. He appointed Zhang Gun of Shanggu as Chief Clerk of the Left and Xu Qian as Marshal of the Right. He appointed Wang Jian of Guangning, He Ba of Dai, Shusun Jian, and Yu Yue as Chiefs of the Outer Court. He appointed Xi Mu as Chief Who Administers The People. All of these people commanded groups of guards and household soldiers and participated in planning discussions about military matters. Zhangsun Daosheng, He Pi, and others were appointed as Attendant Followers of the Left and Right, and all went out to execute his instructions and orders. This Wang Jian was married to Tuoba Shiyijian's daughter; this Yu Yue was the younger brother of Yu Chenzi; this Zhangsun Daosheng was the nephew of Zhangsun Song.


(If you go west out through the Wuzhou border pass of the realm, you will reach Niuchuan. Everything north of there is all desert. According to the Records of Northern Wei, when Tuoba Kudei came to invade him, Tuoba Gui begged for an army from Later Yan. He went from Mount Nu to Niuchuan, camped at the Yuyan River, and came south through Dai Valley to meet up with the Later Yan army. And according to the Commentary on the Water Classic, the Yuyan River flows south of the city of Zhangchuan. So Zhangchaun must be the same as Niuchuan. According to the Ban family's Annotations, the Yuyan River flows out through the Zuru border pass of the realm in Dai commandary, so Niuchuan must also be outside of Zuru. Furthermore, when Emperor Mingyuan of Northern Wei held a grand hunt at Niuchuan, he ascended Mount Fu. The Comprehensive Gazetteer states, "Mount Fu is three li north of Huairong county in Guizhou." The first character of Zuru, 且, is pronounced "zu (z-u)".

Tuoba Gui was Tuoba Shiyijian's grandson through his eldest legitimate son Tuoba Shi.

This began the rise of the Tuoba clan of Northern Wei.

The Book of Northern Wei states, "At the beginning of Northern Wei, when they moved south from out of the desolate north, they appointed Chieftains of the four divisions. They would sit at the royal court and adjudicated decisions, and they would be bound by the decisions, which were marked down in the records. They had no law systems for imprisoning or interrogating anyone; criminal offenders were judged at once and then sent away as soon as a decision had been reached."

The Records of Ministerial Clans in the Book of Northern Wei states, "Tuoba Lin ordered his uncle, Tuoba Zhiyin, to change his clan's name to Yizhan. This was later changed to Shusun."

The events of Yu Hechen sending Tuoba Gui's mother Lady He back to her son, and Zhangsun Song leading his people to join Tuoba Gui, are mentioned above (385.52).)

太祖即位,歷吏部郎、給事黃門侍郎、行臺尚書,甚見禮重。(Book of Northern Wei 24, Biography of Yan Feng)

After Tuoba Gui became King of Dai, Yan Feng served him. He was successively a Gentleman of the Imperial Secretariat, an Attendant Officer of the Gentlemen-Attendants of the Yellow Gate, and a Master of Writing in the Provisional Administration, and he was shown great courtesy and appreciation.

太祖即位,歷吏部郎、給事黃門侍郎、行臺尚書,甚見禮重。(History of the Northern Dynasties 21, Biography of Yan Feng)

After Tuoba Gui became King of Dai, Yan Feng served him. He was successively a Gentleman of the Imperial Secretariat, an Attendant Officer of the Gentlemen-Attendants of the Yellow Gate, and a Master of Writing in the Provisional Administration, and he was shown great courtesy and appreciation.

登國初,遂歸太祖。太祖悅,以為右司馬,與張袞等參贊初基。(Book of Northern Wei 24, Biography of Xu Qian)

At the beginning of the Dengguo reign era (~386), Xu Qian returned to join Tuoba Gui. Tuoba Gui was pleased to have him, and he appointed Xu Qian as Marshal of the Right. Xu Qian worked with Zhang Gun and others to advise Tuoba Gui on building the foundation of his new state.

登國初,遂歸道武,以為右司馬,與張兗等參贊初基。(History of the Northern Dynasties 21, Biography of Xu Qian)

At the beginning of the Dengguo reign era (~386), Xu Qian returned to join Tuoba Gui. Tuoba Gui appointed Xu Qian as Marshal of the Right. Xu Qian worked with Zhang Gun and others to advise Tuoba Gui on building the foundation of his new state.

張袞,字洪龍,上谷沮陽人也。祖翼,遼東太守。父卓,昌黎太守。袞初為郡五官掾,純厚篤實,好學,有文才。太祖為代王,選為左長史。(Book of Northern Wei 24, Biography of Zhang Gun)

Zhang Gun, styled Honglong, was a native of Juyang county in Shanggu commandary. His grandfather, Zhang Yi, was the Administrator of Liaodong; his father, Zhang Zhuo, was the Administrator of Changli. Zhang Gun originally served as an Official For All Purposes in his commandary. He was a pure and honest man who enjoyed learning and had literary talent. When Tuoba Gui became King of Dai, he chose Zhang Gun to be his Chief Clerk of the Left.

張袞,字洪龍,上谷沮陽人也。祖翼,父卓,位並太守。袞篤實好學,有文才。道武為代王,選為左長史。(History of the Northern Dynasties 21, Biography of Zhang Gun)

Zhang Gun, styled Honglong, was a native of Juyang county in Shanggu commandary. His grandfather, Zhang Yi, and his father, Zhang Zhuo, both served as Administrators. Zhang Gun was a pure and honest man who enjoyed learning and had literary talent. When Tuoba Gui became King of Dai, he chose Zhang Gun to be his Chief Clerk of the Left.


2. Murong Chui declared himself Emperor of Yan.


(Murong Chui, styled Daoming, was Murong Huang's fifth son.)

慕容垂妻段氏,字元妃,偽右光祿大夫儀之女也。少而婉慧,有志操,常謂妹季妃曰:「我終不作凡人妻。」委妃亦曰:「妹亦不為庸夫婦。」鄰人聞而笑之。垂之稱燕王,納元妃為繼室,遂有殊寵。偽范陽王德亦娉季妃焉。姊妹俱為垂、德之妻,卒如其志。垂既僭位,拜為皇后。(Book of Jin 96, Biography of Lady Duan of Later Yan)

Lady Duan, styled Yuanfei, was the wife of Murong Chui. She was the daughter of Former Yan's Household Counselor of the Right, Duan Yi. As a young girl, she was gentle and intelligent, but she had ambitious behavior. She often said to her younger sister, Duan Jifei, "I shall never be able to be some common man's wife."

Duan Jifei also said, "I cannot be married to an inferior man either."

Their neighbors who heard this all laughed at it.

When Murong Chui styled himself Prince of Yan, he received Yuanfei as his second wife, and showed her remarkable favor. Later Yan's Prince of Fanyang, Murong De, also took Jifei as his wife. So the two sisters became the wives of Murong Chui and Murong De, thus fulfilling their ambitions.

When Murong Chui declared himself Emperor, he honored Yuanfei as his Empress.


3. Yao Chang returned to Anding.


4. Mi Yi of Nan'an led an army of more than fifty thousand Qiang and Xiongnu to attack Qifu Guoren. Qifu Guoren counterattacked them at the head of five thousand soldiers, and greatly routed the enemy. Mi Yi fled back to Nan'an.


(祕 Mi is a surname. The List of Accomplished Ministers in the Book of Han mentions a Marquis Dai, Mi Peng. At this time, the Mi clan was a local family of Nan'an.)

鮮卑匹蘭率眾五千降。明年,南安秘宜及諸羌虜來擊國仁,四面而至。國仁謂諸將曰:「先人有奪人之心,不可坐待其至。宜抑威餌敵,羸師以張之,軍法所謂怒我而怠寇也。」於是勒眾五千,襲其不意,大敗之。秘宜奔還南安。(Book of Jin 125, Biography of Qifu Guoren)

The Xianbei leader Pilan led his host of five thousand to surrender to Qifu Guoren.

The following year, Mi Yi of Nan'an and the various Qiang caitiffs came to attack Qifu Guoren, and they approached from every side. Qifu Guoren said to his generals, "My ancestors strove for the hearts of the people; they did not simply sit and wait for the people to come to them. Now I should restrain my power in order to entice the enemy. I shall lead a scant force and spread it out. The military arts all say that this will cause them to despise us and be sloppy in their invasion." Then he organized a host of five thousand and suddenly attacked Mi Yi and the others, inflicting a great defeat.

Mi Yi fled back to Nan'an.


5. When Xianyu Qi had killed Zhai Zhen, Zhai Liao had fled to Liyang, where he earned the deep appreciation and trust of Jin's Administrator of Liyang, Teng Tianzhi. Teng Tianzhi was an avid hunter, and he did not respect his soldiers. Due to that, Zhai Liao was able to secretly use perverse acts of kindness to beguile the Jin soldiers and win them over to him. When Teng Tianzhi marched south to attack the city of Luming, Zhai Liao shut the gates of Liyang behind him and held it against him. Teng Tianzhi fled east to Juancheng, but Zhai Liao pursued him and captured him, then returned and occupied Liyang. Jin's Inspector of Yuzhou, Zhu Xu, sent the generals Qin Ying and Tong Bin to lead the soldiers of the commandaries along the Huai and Si Rivers to campaign against Zhai Liao.


(Zhai Zhen's murder is mentioned in the fourth month of the previous year (385.28).

Liyang was north of the Yellow River, while Luming was south of it. Zheng Daoyuan remarked, "According to the Bamboo Annals, in the thirteenth year of the reign of King Huicheng of Liang (~357 BC), he captured Zhenglu." This was the same city as Luming. That city now has a terrace within it, which is commonly called the Luming Terrace or the Luming City.)


6. Wang Guang led his troops from Longyou to attack Mao Xing at Fuhan. Mao Xing sent his General Who Establishes Fortitude, Wei Ping, to lead his relatives and seventeen hundred soldiers to surprise attack Wang Guang by night, and they greatly routed him. In the second month, Wang Tong sent soldiers to assist Wang Guang in attacking Mao Xing, and Mao Xing withdrew into his city to defend himself.


(The year before, Wang Guang had marched from Chengdu to join Wang Tong.)


7. Murong Chui declared a general amnesty in Yan, and the reign era title was changed to Jianxing. All the various offices, including nobles, ministers, and officials of the imperial secretariat, were appointed as necessary for the newly imperial regime. The ancestral temples and the altars of soil and grain were also repaired.


8. Murong Chong greatly enjoyed being in Chang'an, and at the same time, he was afraid of Murong Chui's strength. He did not dare to lead his people back to the east. Instead, he started farming programs and built more palaces, planning to settle in Chang'an for the long term. The Xianbei under him all resented this. His General of the Left, Han Yan, knew that the soldiers were displeased by the situation. So he attacked Murong Chong and killed him, and set up Murong Chong's general Duan Sui in his place. Duan Sui was named as King of Yan, and the reign era title was changed to Changping.


(The Xianbei longed to return to the east again, but Murong Chong wanted to stay in Chang'an where he was secure. This was why it says they resented him. The Zuo Commentary has this quote: "He may succeed who curbs his own desires to follow the views of others; but he will seldom do so who tries to make others follow his desires. (Xi.20)" What more needs be said than that?)


9. After the former ruler of Liangzhou, Zhang Tianxi, had fled south to Jin following Fu Jian's defeat at Fei River, Qin's Colonel of the Chang River Regiment, Wang Mu, kept Zhang Tianxi's heir Zhang Dayu hidden, and together they fled to the Hexi region. There, they sought refuge with Tufa Sifujian, and he sent them to Wei'an. Natives of that place, including Jiao Song, Qi Su, and Zhang Ji, gathered an army of several thousand soldiers to welcome Zhang Dayu as their leader. This army attacked Lü Guang's Changsong commandary and took it, capturing his Administrator there, Wang Shiqiang.

Lü Guang sent his General Who Upholds The State, Du Jin, to attack them, but Du Jin's soldiers were defeated. Then Zhang Dayu advanced to threaten Guzang. Wang Mu remonstrated with him, saying, "Lü Guang has abundant grain and strong defenses, and both his soldiers and their armor are very keen. Even if you try to threaten Guzang, you cannot gain anything by it. It would be better for you to take the territories west of the mountains ranges into your possession. From there, you can drill your soldiers and stockpile grain, and then you will be prepared to return east again to contend for the whole province. If you follow that path, then within less than a year, you will be able to overcome Lü Guang."

But Zhang Dayu did not follow his advice.

Zhang Dayu declared himself General Who Nurtures The Army and Governor of Liangzhou, and he changed the reign era title to Fenghuang. He appointed Wang Mu as his Chief Clerk. Zhang Dayu sent proclamations stating his intentions throughout the counties and commandaries, and he sent Wang Mu to win over the commandaries west of the mountain ranges. The Administrator of Jiankang, Li Xi, and the Commandant of Qilian, Yan Chun, raised soldiers and flocked to Zhang Dayu's standard. Zhang Dayu had an army of thirty thousand men by then, with his base at Fort Yang.


(Zhang Tianxi's flight to Jin after the battle of Fei River is mentioned in Book 105, in the eighth year of Taiyuan (383.13).

Tufa Sifujian was the father of Tufa Wugu.

The Records of the Five Dynasties states, "Changsong county was in Wuwei commandary. Northern Wei made it into Changsong commandary. Northern Zhou abolished it as a commandary, merging it into Zuzi county." Northern Wei also had a Wei'an commandary, which was also later abolished. The Biography of Lü Guang in the Chronicles of the Book of Jin states that Jiao Song and the others welcomed Zhang Dayu at Zuzi, so this must have been the Wei'an commandary that Northern Wei would later form. The Book of Jin was completed during the Tang dynasty, and the Tang ministers simply must have recorded the commandary name used by Northern Wei and Northern Zhou. Regarding the name Zuzi, Meng Kang remarked, "揟 is pronounced 'zu (z-u)', and 次 is pronounced 'zi'."

Changsong was the Han dynasty's Cangsong county. It was originally part of Wuwei commandary, but the Zhang clan of Liangzhou must have split it off as its own commandary. After Lü Guang later spoke with Guo Mu, he changed its name to Eastern Zhangye commandary.

The commandaries west of the mountain ranges were Xi, Zhangye, Jiuquan, Jiankang, and Jinyang.

Jiankang commandary had been formed by Zhang Jun, as part of Liangzhou. The Geographical Records of the New Book of Tang states, “Mount Qilian is a hundred and ninety li northwest of Zhangye county in Ganzhou. North of there is the Jiankang Garrison, which the Zhang clan must have formed as a commandary." According to the Geographical Records of the Book of Jin, during the Yongxing era (?), Zhang Zuo formed Hanyang county in order to defend the pasturage lands there. Zhang Xuanjing renamed it to Qilian commandary.

Fort Yang was west of the city of Guzang.)

初,苻堅之敗,張天錫南奔,其世子大豫為長水校尉王穆所匿。及堅還長安,穆將大豫奔禿髮思復犍,思復犍送之魏安。是月,魏安人焦松、齊肅、張濟等起兵數千,迎大豫於揟次,陷昌松郡。光遣其將杜進討之,為大豫聽敗。大豫遂進逼姑臧,求決勝負,王穆諫曰:「呂光糧豐城固,甲兵精銳,逼之非利。不如席捲嶺西,厲兵積粟,東向而爭,不及期年,可以平也。」大豫不從,乃遣穆求救于嶺西諸郡,建康太守李隰、祁連都尉嚴純及閻襲起兵應之。(Book of Jin 122, Biography of Lü Guang)

Before, when Fu Jian had been defeated, Zhang Tianxi fled to the south. His heir, Zhang Dayu, had been hidden away by Qin's Colonel of the Chang River Regiment, Wang Mu. After Fu Jian returned to Chang'an, Wang Mu brought Zhang Dayu and fled to Tufa Sifujian, who sent them on to Wei'an. That same month, natives of that place, including Jiao Song, Qi Su, and Zhang Ji, gathered an army of several thousand soldiers and welcomed Zhang Dayu at Zuzi. They captured Changsong commandary. Lü Guang sent his general Du Jin to campaign against them, but Du Jin was defeated by Zhang Dayu.

Zhang Dayu then advanced to threaten Guzang, hoping to gain all by a decisive victory. Wang Mu remonstrated with him, saying, "Lü Guang has abundant grain and strong defenses, and both his soldiers and their armor are very keen. Even if you try to threaten Guzang, you cannot gain anything by it. It would be better for you to take the territories west of the mountains ranges into your possession. From there, you can train your soldiers and stockpile grain. You will be prepared to return east again to contend for the whole province. Within less than a year, you may conquer it."

But Zhang Dayu did not follow this advice.

Zhang Dayu sent Wang Mu to win over the commandaries west of the mountain ranges. The Administrator of Jiankang, Li Xi, the Commandant of Qilian, Yan Chun, and Yan Xi all raised soldiers and flocked to Zhang Dayu's standard.


10. Tuoba Gui shifted his residence to Shengle in Dingxiang. There, he oversaw agricultural affairs and worked to comfort the people. The people of his state were all pleased with him.


(This passage demonstrates the reasons for Tuoba Gui's rise.

Regarding Shengle, the Book of Former Han mentions a place called Chengle, part of Dingxiang commandary, while the Book of Later Han mentions a place called Shengle, part of Yunzhong commandary. I (Hu Sanxing) suspect that the Shengle of Dingxiang and the Shengle of Yunzhong were the same place. However, according to the Annals of the Tuoba Ancestors in the Book of Northern Wei, after Tuoba Shiyijian became the Prince of Dai, in the third year of his reign (Book 96, 340.7), he moved his capital to Shengle in Yunzhong, and the following year (341.13), he built a city at Shengle eight li south of the original city. So that place could not possibly have been the city of Shengle of Later Han. I suspect the Shengle in Dingxiang must be the Chengle of Former Han. It must have been that at the beginning of the Jianwu era, when the Xiongnu invaded, all of the people living along the border of the realm were moved to the interior. Later on, after the Southern Chanyu became a vassal of the dynasty and the Northern Chanyu's power was curbed, the people in the interior were moved back to the border again. Everything outside of the cities in those counties and commandaries was swept clear, and there certainly could not have been anything else to tend to. According to Song Bai's Extended Tongdian, the Tang dynasty's Saowu Garrison was the same as the Shengle in the Han dynasty's Dingxiang commandary. It was on the southern side of Mount Yin, and north of the Yellow River. This was the Shengle which was Northern Wei's capital. It was more than three hundred li north of Tang's Shuozhou. After Emperor Xiaowen of Northern Wei moved the capital to Luoyang, he formed Shuozhou around the capital city of Dingxiang commandary, combined with Shengle and Guangmu commandaries. After Tang had first pacified the Turkic Khaganate (Tujue), they formed the Yunzhong Command Post at Shengle. In the eighth year of Zhenguan (634), Yunzhou's Yunzhong commandary and Dingxiang county were moved into the modern Yunzhou, and the Yunzhong Command Post was also later renamed to the Chanyu Command Post, and then renamed again to the Command Post of Northern Security. From all this, we can see that there was some confusion regarding Dingxiang and Yunzhong, but it was all the same Shengle.)


11. In the third month, a general amnesty was declared in Jin.


12. Jin's Administrator of Taishan, Zhang Yuan, raised his commandary in rebellion and submitted to Zhai Liao.

Before, Xie Xuan had wished to send Zhu Xu to camp at Liangguo. Xie Xuan himself was camped at Pengcheng, where he could guard the line of the Yellow River to his north, while also being in a position to assist Luoyang to his west. But the Jin court discussed how long the expeditionary campaigns had gone on for, and they wished to order Xie Xuan to break camp and return to Jin. Then Zhai Liao and Zhang Yuan rebelled one after the other, and there were many disturbances in the north. Xie Xuan apologized for his faults and begged to be released from his office. The court responded with reassurances, and only ordered him to return to Huaiyin.


13. Murong Chui posthumously honored his mother, Lady Lan, as Empress Wenzhao.

Murong Huang's chief wife had been Lady Duan, posthumously known as Empress Wenming, and after she had died, she had been buried together with him. But Murong Chui now wished to have Lady Duan's body moved elsewhere, and to have his mother Lady Lan be the one who was offered sacrifices at Murong Huang's temple. He called a meeting of his ministers to discuss the matter, and almost all of them felt that this would only be natural.

But the Court Academicians, Liu Xiang and Dong Mi, objected. They said, "When Emperor Yao's mother became Emperor Ku's concubine, she only held the third position, and she was not granted a more honored burial place than Emperor Ku's chief wife, Jiang Yuan. That was a wise and sage course, and it has served as a precedent from that time until this. Empress Wenzhao should be kept in a separate temple." Murong Chui was furious, and he threatened them. They replied, "If that is what you wished to do all along, there was no use in asking us. We consult the Classics and uphold the proper rites, and we dare not turn from them." So Murong Chui did not ask anything further of the Confucianists about the matter. He had Lady Duan's body moved, and Lady Lan's body put in her place alongside Murong Huang.

Murong Chui also overturned the altars of soil and grain to the late Empress Jingzhao, Murong Jun's wife Lady Kezuhun, and posthumously stripped her of her title as Empress. He honored Murong Jun's late concubine, Lady Duan, as Empress Jingde, and he arranged for her to be offered sacrifices at Murong Jun's temple instead.


(Lady Duan had been Murong Huang's chief wife. Lady Lan was his secondary wife. Murong Huang's temple name was Taizu, and his posthumous name was Emperor Wenming.

The ministers agreed with Murong Chui's proposal.

The Records of the Five Emperors in the Records of the Grand Historian states, "Emperor Ku had four concubines. The first was a woman of the Youtai clan named Jiang Yuan, and she gave birth to Houji. The second was a woman of the Yousong clan named Jiandi, and she gave birth to Xie. The third was a woman of the Chenfeng clan named Qingdou, and she gave birth to Fangxun (Emperor Yao). The fourth was a woman of the Juzi clan named Changyi, and she gave birth to Zhi.

Lady Kezuhun had been Murong Jun's chief wife. Murong Chui overturned her altar because of what she had done to him and his wife, as mentioned in Book 102, in Emperor Fei's fourth year of Taihe (369.18). Lady Duan was Murong Jun's secondary wife. Murong Jun's temple name was Liezu, and his posthumous name was Emperor Jingzhao.)


14. Cui Hong, the compiler of the Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms, made this remark: Duke Huan of Qi gave his ministers many charges, one of which was to not exalt the concubine in place of the wife. A man cannot put a concubine before his wife, any more than a son can replace his mother! The Spring and Autumn Annals insist that sons are exalted by their mothers, and the concubine may only be exalted if the wife has no children. As for the matter of the sacrifices in the ancestral temples, in the end, even Chengfeng was not granted sacrifices alongside Duke Zhuang. Whatever a ruler does as father, his son and heir is sure to follow his example, like how an initial sound produces an echo. When Murong Bao later hounded his stepmother to death, he was only following in his father's footsteps. Even the good example of Yao's abdication to Shun became a disasterous precedent when King Kuai of Yan abdicated his throne to his minister Zizhi and caused civil strife. How much worse must it be to leave an example of one who violates propriety for selfish reasons!

As for Lady Kezuhun, in ancient times, the lady Wen Jiang committed a crime against Duke Huan, yet the Spring and Autumn Annals state that even she was not stripped of her title. Although Lady Kezuhun had committed offenses during the time of the Former Yan court, she had been successfully buried according to the rites. Murong Chui stripped her title out of selfish resentment, and exalted his elder brother's concubine, who had not provided him with any children. These things all went against propriety.


(Mencius said, "When Duke Huan of Qi held the meeting at Kuiqiu, this was his first mandate to his ministers: 'Slay the unfilial; change not the son who has been appointed heir; exalt not a concubine to be the wife.' (Gaozi II.27)"

The Gongyang Commentary to the Spring and Autumn Annals states, "In the state of Lu, there were the two Dukes who succeeded Duke Hui; they were Huan and Yin. Although Huan was younger, he was more exalted. Although Yin was older, he was of coarser blood. But as Yin was both older and worthy, the great men of Lu set him up as Duke in place of Huan. So Yin occupied the seat of power, but it was only in Huan's stead. Now since Yin was both older and worthy, why should he not have become Duke? Because it is fitting to set up the older son, not the worthiest, but it is also fitting to set up the exalted son, not necessarily the oldest. How was Huan exalted? Because his mother was exalted. The mother being exalted, how could the son not be? The son is exalted by his mother, and the mother by her son." The Zuo Commentary states, "Duke Hui's first wife was Mengzi. After her death, Duke Hui took Shengzi to continue the line, and Shengzi gave birth to Duke Yin. But Duke Wu of Song had a daughter named Zhongzi, who was fated to be a wife of Lu. She gave birth to Duke Huan. After Duke Hui's death, Duke Yin was set up in his place."

Lady Jiang was the wife of Duke Zhuang of Lu. The Chengfeng mentioned here was Duke Zhuang's concubine, and the mother of Duke Xi. Lady Jiang had relations with Gongzhong, and she murdered Duke Min, hoping to set up Gongzhong in his place. However, she failed. She fled to her grandson in the state of Zou, but Duke Huan of Qi killed her. After Duke Xi became Duke, he asked that mourning be held for her, and she was buried with the rites due to a wife.

The matter of Murong Bao and his stepmother is mentioned later on, in Book 108, in the twenty-first year of Taiyuan (396).

The strife caused when King Kuai of Yan abdicated to his minister Zizhi is mentioned in Book 2, in the fifth year of the reign of King Shenjing of Zhou (316 BC).

Wen Jiang was the wife of Duke Huan of Lu. She had relations with Duke Xiang of Qi, and Duke Huan banished her. Wen Jiang told Duke Xiang about it, so Duke Xiang killed Duke Huan. Later on, in Duke Zhuang's twenty-first year, the Spring and Autumn Annals states that Lady Jiang passed away. In the twenty-second year, it mentions that "we buried our [the state of Lu’s] Duchess, Wen Jiang". So she had not been stripped of her title.

Murong Chui's selfish resentment was that Lady Kezuhun had slandered and killed his wife Lady Duan, and she had slandered Murong Chui himself and forced him to flee to Former Qin.)


15. Liu Xian fled south from Shanwu to Mayi. His kinsman Liu Nuzhen led all his people to ask to surrender to Dai.

Liu Nuzhen had an elder brother, Liu Jian, who had been residing with the Helan clan until now. Liu Nuzhen spoke to Tuoba Gui, asking him to summon Liu Jian to come to Dai so that Liu Nuzhen could yield his authority to him, and Tuoba Gui agreed.

Once Liu Jian was in charge of Liu Nuzhen's forces, he sent his younger brother Liu Qujin to bring gold and horses to He Ne. He Rangan said to Liu Qujin, "We treated you and your brothers well before. Now that you have command over your forces, you should come to join us." And Liu Qujin agreed.

But Liu Nuzhen was furious, and he said, "Ever since our ancestors, we have been loyal servants of Dai for generations. That was why I yielded my forces to you two, hoping that you would act justly. Yet now you all are so insolent that you plot treason against the state. What justice is there in this?" And he killed Liu Jian and Liu Qujin.

When He Rangan heard what had happened, he led his soldiers to attack Liu Nuzhen, and Liu Nuzhen fled to Dai. Then Tuoba Gui sent envoys to criticize He Rangan, so He Rangan called off his attack.


(Liu Xian feared the threat posed by Dai, and he was worried that they would resent him.

This was the start of the rift between Tuoba Gui and the Helan clan.)

太祖即位,顯自善無南走馬邑。族人奴真領部來附。奴真兄犍,先居賀蘭部。至是,奴真請召犍而讓部焉。太祖義而許之。犍既領部,自以久託賀訥,德之,乃使弟去斤遺之金馬。訥弟染干因謂之曰:「我待汝兄弟厚,汝今領部,宜來從我。」去斤請之奴真。奴真曰:「父為國家附臣,世効忠貞。我志全名節,是故推讓。今汝等無狀,乃欲叛主懷貳。」於是殺犍及去斤。染干聞其殺兄,率騎討之,奴真懼,徙部來奔太祖。太祖自迎之,遣使責止染干。奴真感恩,請奉妹充後宮,太祖納之。(Book of Northern Wei 23, Biography of Liu Kuren)

After Tuoba Gui became King of Dai, Liu Xian fled south from Shanwu to Mayi. His kinsman Liu Nuzhen led all his people to ask to surrender to Dai.

Liu Nuzhen had an elder brother, Liu Jian, who had been residing with the Helan clan until now. At this time, Liu Nuzhen spoke to Tuoba Gui, asking him to summon Liu Jian to come to Dai so that Liu Nuzhen could yield his authority to him. Tuoba Gui found this to be a just proposal, so he agreed.

Liu Jian then took command of Liu Nuzhen's forces. He had long depended on the protection of He Ne, and he appreciated what He Ne had done for him. So he sent his younger brother Liu Qujin to offer gold and horses to He Ne. He Ne's younger brother He Rangan said to Liu Qujin, "We treated you and your brothers well before. Now that you have command over your forces, you should come to join us."

Liu Qujin proposed this idea to Liu Nuzhen. But Liu Nuzhen said, "Our father was a close supporter of the state, loyal and true all his life. My sole ambition has been to become renowned for my duty, and that was why I yielded my forces to you two. Yet now you all are so insolent that you harbor thoughts of treason and plan to rebel against our lord." And he killed Liu Jian and Liu Qujin.

When He Rangan heard that Liu Nuzhen had killed his elder brothers, he led his cavalry to attack Liu Nuzhen. Liu Nuzhen, afraid, relocated his forces and fled to Tuoba Gui. Tuoba Gui himself came to welcome Liu Nuzhen, and he sent envoys to criticize He Rangan, so He Rangan called off his attack. Liu Nuzhen was moved by Tuoba Gui's grace, and he offered Tuoba Gui his younger sisters to fill his rear palace. Tuoba Gui accepted them.


16. Western Yan's Deputy Director of the Left, Murong Heng, and their Master of Writing, Murong Yong, suddenly attacked the new ruler Duan Sui and killed him. They acclaimed the Prince of Yidu's (Murong Huan's) son, Murong Yi, as the new King of Yan, and they changed the reign era title to Jianming.

The Xianbei all marched east out of Chang'an; men and women, they numbered more than four hundred thousand people.

The General Who Nurtures the Army, Murong Heng's younger brother Murong Tao, enticed Murong Yi and killed him at Linjin. Murong Heng was furious, and he cast out Murong Tao. Murong Yong and the Guard General of Valor, Diao Yun, led their forces to attack Murong Tao. Murong Tao was defeated, and he fled to Murong Heng's camp. Murong Heng then acclaimed Murong Chong's son Murong Yao as the new Emperor, and he changed the reign era title again to Jianping. Murong Chong was posthumously named Emperor Wei ("the Mighty").

Many of the Western Yan soldiers abandoned Murong Yao and went over to Murong Yong. Then Murong Yong captured Murong Yao, and killed him. He acclaimed Murong Hong's son Murong Zhong as the new Emperor, and he changed the reign era title yet again to Jianwu. Murong Zhong appointed Murong Yong as Grand Commandant, acting Prefect of the Masters of Writing, and Prefect of Hedong. Murong Yong broadened and simplified the laws, and the Xianbei settled down.

When the Western Yan host reached Wenxi, they heard that Murong Chui too had already declared himself Emperor of Yan, so they dared not advance any further. They built walls at Yanxi and resided there.


(Some versions state that Murong Heng was Deputy Director "of the Left".

This passage lists Murong Yi as the son of "the Prince of Yidu". He must have been the son of Former Yan's Prince of Yidu, Murong Huan.

In Emperor Fei's fifth year of Taihe (370), Former Qin had relocated the Xianbei to Chang'an. After only seventeen years, the various tribes had grown to such an extent. During Tang Taizong's reign, it was fortunate that Ashina Jiesheshuai's rebellion, which had a similar nature, was launched early and so failed.

This was why Murong Chui later extinguished Western Yan.)


17. Now that the Xianbei had departed for the east, Chang'an was left an empty ruin. The former official (or, Administrator) of Xingyang, Zhao Gu of Gaoling, and others beckoned the Lushui Hu leader, Hao Nu of Xingcheng, to lead four thousand households to come to Chang'an. Everyone north of the Wei River followed him. He appointed Zhao Gu as his Prime Minister.

At that time, Wang Lin of Fufeng had a host of several thousand men which he was using to defend Mawei. Hao Nu sent his younger brother Hao Duo to attack him.

In summer, the fourth month, Yao Chang marched from Anding to campaign against these local forces. Wang Lin fled to Hanzhong. Yao Chang captured Hao Duo and continued to advance. Hao Nu was afraid, and he asked to surrender to Yao Chang. In return, Yao Chang appointed him as General Who Guards The North and Grand Commander of the Six Valleys.


(Some versions state that Zhao Gu was the "Administrator" of Xingyang.

Mount Mawei is in the west of Xianyang county, more than a hundred li from Chang'an. The Tongdian states, "There is a city of Mawei in Jincheng county in Jingzhao commandary." Sun Jing'an's 征塗記 states, "We do not know which dynasty built Mawei."

As for Jincheng, during Zhou it was called Quanqiu, during Qin it was called Feiqiu, and during Han it was called Huaili.

The Six Valleys were in the southern hills of Chang'an.)

沖既率眾東下,長安空虛。盧水郝奴稱帝于長安,渭北盡應之。扶風王驎有眾數千,保據馬嵬。奴遣弟多攻驎。萇伐驎,破之,驎走漢中。執多而進攻奴,降之。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

After Murong Chong led his forces away to the east, Chang'an was left an empty ruin. The Lushui Hu leader, Hao Nu, declared himself Emperor at Chang'an, and everyone north of the Wei River heeded him. Wang Lin of Fufeng gathered an army of several thousand, and he occupied Mawei and held out there. Hao Nu sent his younger brother Hao Duo to attack Wang Lin.

Yao Chang campaigned against Wang Lin and routed him; Wang Lin fled to Hanzhong. Then Yao Chang captured Hao Duo and advanced to attack Hao Nu, who surrendered to him.


18. On the day Guisi (June 5th), Jin appointed the Deputy Director of the Masters of Writing, Lu Na, as Deputy Director of the Left, and the Prince of Qiao, Sima Tian, as Deputy Director of the Right. This Lu Na was the son of Lu Wan.


(The Records of Jin states, "Sometimes, there were not two separate offices of the Deputy Directors of the Left and Right, but a single office of Deputy Director over the Masters of Writing."

Lu Wan is mentioned in Book 94, in Emperor Cheng's fourth year of Xianhe (329.1).)


19. Mao Xing suddenly attacked Wang Guang and defeated him. Wang Guang fled to Qinzhou. The Xianbei leader Pilan of Longxi captured Wang Guang and sent him to Later Qin.

Mao Xing then wished to attack Wang Tong at Shanggu. But the Di people of Fuhan were weary of all this fighting. So they attacked Mao Xing together and killed him. Then they acclaimed Wei Ping as Inspector of Hezhou, and he sent messengers to Fu Pi asking for his commands.


(These Di must have been the ones that Fu Jian had assigned to Mao Xing's command in order to defend Fuhan.

Wei Ping’s clan was very powerful, and that was why the Di acclaimed him.)


20. Murong Chui appointed Murong Nong as Prince of Liaoxi, Murong Lin as Prince of Zhao, and Murong Long as Prince of Gaoyang.


21. It was at this time that Tuoba Gui changed his title to King of Wei.


(This was when the Tuoba clan's state first started to be called Wei.)


22. Zhang Dayu advanced from Fort Yang to camp west of Guzang, while Wang Mu and Tufa Sifujian's son Tufa Xiyu led an army of thirty thousand soldiers to camp south of the city. But Lü Guang marched out and attacked them, and he greatly routed them. Tufa Xiyu and more than twenty thousand soldiers were killed.

大豫進屯城西,王穆率眾三萬及思復犍子奚于等陣于城南。光出擊,破之,斬奚于等二萬餘級。光謂諸將曰:「大豫若用王穆之言,恐未可平也。」諸將曰:「大豫豈不及此邪!皇天欲贊成明公八百之業,故令大豫迷於良算耳。」光大悅,賜金帛有差。(Book of Jin 122, Biography of Lü Guang)

Zhang Dayu advanced and camped west of the city, while Wang Mu led an army of thirty thousand men to array themselves for battle south of the city, along with Tufa Sifujian's son Tufa Xiyu and others. But Lü Guang marched out and attacked them, and he routed them. Tufa Xiyu and more than twenty thousand soldiers were killed.

Lü Guang said to his generals, "If Zhang Dayu had followed Wang Mu's advice, I fear I never would have been able to defeat him."

His generals said, "How could Zhang Dayu have been able to manage that? The Yellow Heaven wishes to see Your Grace's eight hundred endeavors fulfilled, and that is why it compelled Zhang Dayu to turn away from such an excellent strategy."

Lü Guang was greatly pleased, and he awarded gold and silks among them as appropriate.


23. A general amnesty was declared in Qin. Fu Pi ordered that Wei Ping was to be appointed as General Who Nurtures The Army and Inspector of Hezhou, and that Lü Guang was to be appointed as Grand General of Chariots and Cavalry and Governor of Liangzhou. However, Fu Pi's messengers carrying these orders were all lost to Later Qin, and the messages did not get through.


(At this time, Fu Pi was at Jinyang. The roads from there to Hezhou and Liangzhou were all blocked off by Later Qin, and that is why the messages could not reach those two areas.)

太安元年,苻丕以光為車騎大將軍、涼州牧,領護西域大都督、酒泉公。(Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms 10, Biography of Lü Guang)

In the first year of Tai'an (386), Fu Pi appointed Lü Guang as Grand General of Chariots and Cavalry, Governor of Liangzhou, acting Grand Commander Who Protects The Western Reaches, and Marquis of Jiuquan.


24. Murong Chui appointed Murong De as Prefect of the Masters of Writing, Murong Kai as Deputy Director of the Left, and Murong Wen as Colonel-Director of Retainers.


(Murong Wen was guarding Zhongshan, where he had built barracks and palaces. On account of his achievements in making a capital city out of Zhongshan, he was made the Colonel-Director of Retainers.)


25. Following Hao Nu's surrender, Yao Chang took Chang'an for himself. There, he proclaimed himself Emperor. He declared a general amnesty, and he changed the reign era title to Jianchu. He named his state Great Qin.

Yao Chang posthumously honored his father Yao Yizhong as Emperor Jingyuan, and he honored his wife Lady She as Empress and his son Yao Xing as Crown Prince. He created all the imperial offices as well.

Yao Chang held a feast for all his ministers, at which he became very drunk. He said to them, "All of you were once like me, and used to face north in the Qin court. Yet now I have become the sovereign, and you all have become my ministers. Was this not shamefully done?"

Zhao Qian replied, "Heaven was not ashamed to see you become its Son, so why should we be ashamed to become your servants?"

Yao Chang greatly laughed at that.


(Yao Chang, styled Jingmao, was Yao Yizhong's twenty-fourth son.

The Leipian dictionary states, "虵, pronounced 'ye (y-e)', is a barbarian surname." The Registry of Surnames states, "Yao Chang's empress was Lady She. She was a native of Nan'an. 虵 is pronounced 'she (s-he)' or 'ta'.")

建初元年,僭即皇帝位於長安,大赦改年,國號大秦,改長安為常安。追尊考弋仲為景元皇帝,妣曰德皇後。子興為皇太子。(Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms 5, Biography of Yao Chang)

In Yao Chang's first year of Jianchu (386), he declared himself Emperor at Chang'an. He declared a general amnesty, changed the reign era title, and proclaimed the name of his state as Great Qin. He changed the name of the city from 長安 Chang'an ("Everlasting Peace") to 常安 Chang'an ("Constant Peace"). He posthumously honored his father Yao Yizhong as Emperor Jingyuan and his mother as Empress Dowager De. He appointed his son Yao Xing as Crown Prince.

乙太元十一年萇僭即皇帝位於長安,大赦,改元曰建初,國號大秦,改長安曰常安。立妻虵氏為皇后,子興為皇太子,置百官。自謂以火德承苻氏木行,服色如漢氏承周故事。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

In the eleventh year of Taiyuan (386), Yao Chang declared himself Emperor at Chang'an. He declared a general amnesty, changed the reign era title to Jianchu, and proclaimed the name of his state as Great Qin. He changed the name of the city from 長安 Chang'an ("Everlasting Peace") to 常安 Chang'an ("Constant Peace"). He honored his wife Lady She as Empress, he appointed his son Yao Xing as Crown Prince, and he created the imperial offices.

Yao Chang stated that his dynasty was of the element of Fire, and he would be succeeding the Fu clan's element of Wood, so he changed the color of his court attire in emulation of what the Han dynasty had done when they had succeeded the Zhou dynasty (which was also a Wood to Fire transition).

登國元年,萇僭稱皇帝,置百官,國號大秦,年曰建初,改長安曰常安。(Book of Northern Wei 95, Biography of Yao Chang)

In the first year of Dengguo (386), Yao Chang declared himself Emperor. He created the imperial offices, proclaimed the name of his state as Great Qin, and changed the reign era title to Jianchu. He changed the name of the city from 長安 Chang'an ("Everlasting Peace") to 常安 Chang'an ("Constant Peace").


26. Tuoba Gui went east to Lingshi. The leader of the Hufuhou forces, Houchen, and the leader of the Yifu forces, Daiti, both rebelled and ran away. Tuoba Gui's generals wished to pursue them. But Tuoba Gui said, "Houchen and the others have served Dai for generations. If they have caused offenses, I must bear with them for now. We have only just started to forge the new state, and the feelings of the people are not yet of one accord. Foolish as I am, I must know when to press a matter and when to let it go. It would do no good to pursue them!"


(Lingshi was the name of a place, east of Shengle.

By "when to press a matter and when to let it go", Tuoba Gui was saying that he should not treat rebels and the obedient in the same way.

This passage shows how Tuoba Gui knew the right timing for how to settle rebellions and developments.)


27. In the sixth month, on the day Gengyin (August 1st), Jin appointed the former General Who Upholds The State, Yang Liang, as Inspector of Yongzhou, and he was stationed to defend the imperial tombs at Luoyang. The Inspector of Jingzhou, Huan Shimin, sent his general Yan Qian to attack Hongnong, and it was subdued. Two defense camps were then formed at Hu and Shan.


(Emperor Xiaowu had organized Jin's current version of Yongzhou around Xiangyang. Yang Liang was now sent to Yongzhou, and he was stationed at Luoyang.

The Registry of Surnames states, "The Zuo Commentary mentions a Master 晏 Yan in Qi, who became a minister in Dai."

Hu and Shan counties were both part of Hongnong commandary.)


28. In Western Yan, Diao Yun and the others killed Murong Zhong, and they acclaimed Murong Yong as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Grand Commander of all military affairs, Grand General, Grand Chanyu, Governor of Yongzhou, Qinzhou, Lianzhou, and Liangzhou, chief of affairs of the Masters of Writing, and Prince of Hedong. Murong Yong declared himself a vassal of Yan.


(This passage means that Murong Yong declared himself Murong Chui's vassal.)


29. Murong Chui sent Murong Kai, Murong Lin, Murong Shao, and the Prince of Zhangwu, Murong Zhou, to attack Fu Ding, Fu Shao, Fu Mo, Fu Liang, and the other Qin loyalists. Before the Yan generals launched their attack, Murong Kai wrote to the Qin commanders, outling the reality of their situation to them. Fu Ding and the others all surrendered to him. Murong Chui appointed Fu Ding and the others as Marquises, saying, "This is in recognition of the lord of Qin's virtue."


(The year before, Fu Ding and the others had abandoned their original submission to Later Yan and supported Former Qin again.)


30. At this time, Fu Pi's minister Wang Yong was his Commander of all military affairs, Minister Over The Masses, and chief of affairs of the Masters of Writing. Fu Pi appointed Wang Yong as Prime Minister of the Left and Grand Commandant. He appointed Fu Zuan as Grand Marshal, and he appointed Zhang Qi as Grand Commandant. The Prefect of the Masters of Writing, Xu Yi of Xianyang, was appointed as the new Minister of Works to replace Zhang Qi. The Colonel-Director of Retainers, Wang Teng, was appointed as Grand General of Agile Cavalry, with equal ceremonial to the Three Excellencies.

Wang Yong issued proclamations and sent them out in every direction, going to every noble, governor, administrator, master of fortified places, and all the people in general. The proclamations called for a general campaign against Yao Chang and Murong Chui, and ordered everyone to bring their soldiers to assemble at a great meeting at Linjin to greet the imperial carriage within ten days of the first month of winter. Among those who answered the call were Jiang Yan of Tianshui, Kou Ming of Pingyi, Wang Zhao of Hedong, Zhang Yan of Xinping, Du Min of Jingzhao, Ma Lang of Fufeng, and the General Who Establishes Loyalty and Commandant of Shepherd Officials in Gaoping, Wang Min of Fufeng. Each of them rose up with their soldiers, and each commanded several tens of thousands. They sent messengers to Qin, and Fu Pi appointed all of them as Generals, Administrators, and Marquises.

The Champion General, Deng Jing, recruited an army of five thousand people and captured Peng Pond, and he and Dou Chong attacked Later Qin from front and rear. Fu Pi appointed Deng Jing as Intendant of Jingzhao. This Deng Jing was the son of Deng Qiang.


(The title General Who Establishes Loyalty must have also been a creation of the Fu clan.

During Han, Gaoping county was part of Anding commandary. Jin had abolished it, but Liu Yao of Han-Zhao had made it the administrative center of Shuozhou. Former Qin had assigned a Commandant of Shepherd Officials there.

I (Hu Sanxing) believe the 彭 Peng Pond mentioned here should be 彪 Biao Pond. Biao Pond was west of Chang'an. It is the same Biao Pond mentioned in the Book of Poetry, in the verse "North flows Biao Pond (Baihua 3)". And Dou Chong had captured Zichuan, which was southeast of Chang'an, so the two-thrusted attack could be said to be "from front and rear". It should be noted that according to the Geographical Records of the New Book of Tang, there was also a Peng Pond in Ningzhou. But such a place was obviously very far away from Zichuan.

Deng Qiang was a famous Former Qin general.)


31. Yao Chang relocated more than five thousand households from Anding to Chang'an.

萇徙安定五千餘戶于長安。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

Yao Chang relocated more than five thousand households from Anding to Chang'an.


32. In autumn, the seventh month, Qin's Administrator of Pingliang, Jin Xi, and their Commandant of Anding, Mei Yigan, fought with Later Qin's General of the Left, Yao Fangcheng, at Sunqiu Valley. Yao Fangcheng's soldiers were defeated. Yao Chang appointed his General Who Conquers The Caitiffs, his younger brother Yao Xu, as Colonel-Director of Retainers, and stationed him at Chang'an. Then Yao Chang marched to Anding to attack Jin Xi and the others, and he greatly routed them. Jin Xi came from one of the eastern Hu tribes; Mei Yigan was from the Duolan tribe of the Xianbei.


(Sunqiu Valley was at Anding.

By "eastern Hu tribes", this passage means one of the Xianbei tribes that resided in the Liao and Jie regions; the people of Former Qin called such Xianbei the "eastern Hu tribes".)

秋七月,萇如安定。(Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms 5, Biography of Yao Chang)

In autumn, the seventh month, Yao Chang returned to Anding.

萇以弟征虜緒為司隸校尉,鎮長安。萇如安定,擊平涼胡金熙、鮮卑沒奕於,大破之。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

Yao Chang appointed his General Who Conquers The Caitiffs, his younger brother Yao Xu, as Colonel-Director of Retainers and stationed him at Chang'an.

Yao Chang returned to Anding, where he attacked the Pingling tribal leader Jin Xi and the Xianbei leader Mei Yiyu and greatly routed them.


33. The Di people in Fuhan lamented that Wei Ping was so old that it would be difficult to accomplish anything with him in charge. So they discussed deposing him. But they were afraid to do anything on account of his powerful clan, so no action was taken for several days. At last, one of them, Tan Qing, said to the other generals, "We ought to decide upon such an important matter quickly; if not, events will overtake us. Gentlemen, you need only invite Lord Wei to a meeting, and then you can watch what I shall do."

So they held a great feast on the day of the Qixi Festival (the seventh day of the seventh month). At the feast, Tan Qing drew his sword in front of them and declared, "The realm is in great chaos. I feel the same way as Cao Xiu once did; namely, that we cannot achieve our design unless we have a worthy master. Lord Wei is old, and he should yield his place to a younger and more worthy fellow. There is the Chief of Didao, Fu Deng. Though he is only a distant relative of the imperial family, he has cunning ambitions and bold insights. Let us invite him to lead us, and together we shall welcome the imperial carriage. If there is anyone among you who disagrees with this, let him speak now." And he lifted up his sword and pushed up his sleeves, prepared to behead anyone who said otherwise. Everyone there went along with his proposal, and no one dared to look up.

They acclaimed Fu Deng as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Commander of military affairs in Longyou, Grand General Who Nurtures The Army, Governor of Yongzhou and Hezhou, and Duke of Lüeyang. Fu Deng commanded the army of fifty thousand soldiers. He marched east out of the Long mountains, attacked Nan'an, and took it. Then he sent a courier off to seek Fu Pi's commands. This Fu Deng was Fu Pi’s junior kinsman, one generation removed.


(啖, pronounced "tan (t-an)", is a surname.

Wei Ping had been one of Mao Xing's subordinate generals.

By the "imperial carriage", Tan Qing meant for them to respond to Wang Yong's proclamation and go join Fu Pi.

This was the beginning of Fu Deng's activities.)


34. Mi Yi and Mohou Tijuan led more than thirty thousand households to surrender to Qifu Guoren. Qifu Guoren appointed Mi Yi as Inspector of Eastern Qinzhou, and he appointed Mohou Tijuan as Inspector of Lianzhou.


(莫侯 Mohou was a tribal compound surname.)

尋與其弟莫侯悌率眾三萬餘戶降于國仁,各拜將軍、刺史。(Book of Jin 125, Biography of Qifu Guoren)

Mi Yi and his younger brother Mohou Ti soon led their more than thirty thousand households to surrender to Qifu Guoren. He appointed both of them as Generals and Inspectors.


35. On the day Jiyou (August 20th), Tuoba Gui returned to Shengle. Daiti brought his tribes back and surrendered. But more than ten days later, he fled again to Liu Xian. Tuoba Gui had Daiti's grandson Beijin assume command of his forces.

Liu Xian's younger brother Liu Feini led his forces to surrender to Wei.


(Tuoba Gui had returned from Longshi.)


36. In the eighth month, Murong Chui left Murong Bao to guard Zhongshan, and he appointed Murong Lin as Deputy Director of the Right of the Masters of Writing, leaving him in charge of the administration. On the day Gengwu (September 10th), Murong Chui himself led Murong De and others on a southern campaign, and he sent Murong Long east to settle Pingyuan.

The Dingling leader Xianyu Qi was guarding the mountains west of Queyang. When he heard that Murong Chui was marching away to the south, he went out and set his camp at Wangdou, where he plundered the local people there. Murong Lin planned to go campaign against Xianyu Qi himself. But his generals all said to him, "If Your Highness leaves your post empty to attack a distant enemy, then if by some chance you have to come back without having achieved anything, it will diminish your martial reputation. It would be better to send the other generals to campaign."

But Murong Lin replied, "Xianyu Qi has heard that the imperial carriage has gone away, and so he is not the least bit afraid or suspicious of any threats to himself. He certainly will not have prepared anything to defend himself. I need only reach out and take him. There is no need to worry."

Murong Lin gave out word that he would be marching to Lukou. But during the night, he reversed course and suddenly marched towards Xianyu Qi's position. By the time morning came, he was at Xianyu Qi's camp. He launched a surprise attack against the camp, and captured Xianyu Qi.


(Queyang county was part of Changshan commandary.

Wangdou county was part of Zhongshan commandary. The Commentary on the Water Classic states, "Emperor Yao's fief was at Tang. In that place, Mount Yao was to the northeast, while Mount Qingdou, named after Yao's mother, was to the south. From the summit of Mount Yao, one can see Mount Qingdou. This was why the county was named Wangdou ('Dou is within sight').")

Despite the matching name, this does not appear to be the same Xianyu Qi who killed Zhai Zhen, since it says that Xianyu Qi was killed afterwards (385.28).


37. Zhao Liao invaded Qiao, but Zhu Xu attacked him and drove him off.


38. Fu Pi appointed Fu Deng as Grand General Who Conquers The West, Prince of Nan'an, Credential Bearer, Governor, and Commander, and he was granted the privilege of a Separate Office with equal ceremonial to the Three Excellencies. All of this was done because Fu Deng recognized his claim and supported him. Xu Yi was appointed as Prime Minister of the Right.

Fu Pi left Wang Teng to guard Jinyang, and he sent the Deputy Director of the Right, Yang Fu, to camp at Huguan. Fu Pi himself led an army of forty thousand to advance and camp at Pingyang.


39. Earlier, Yao Chang had sent his younger brother Yao Shuode to assemble all the Qiang tribes living in the Long mountains. When Yao Shuode heard that Yao Chang had risen in rebellion against Qin, he declared himself General Who Conquers The West, and he gathered an army at Jicheng to support Yao Chang. He appointed his elder brother Yao Sunxiang as General Who Maintains Distant Places, and sent him to capture Longcheng, while he appointed his great-nephew Yao Xun as General Who Maintains The West, and sent him to capture Chiting in Nan'an.

Yao Shuode then found himself locked in a stalemate with Wang Tong. Yao Chang led troops from Anding to join with Yao Shuode and attack Wang Tong. The Chuge tribes of Tianshui and the Qiang and other tribes of Lüeyang all came to join Yao Chang, more than twenty thousand households. Qin's Administrator of Lüeyang, Wang Pi, surrendered to him.


(The extended Yao clan had come from the Qiang tribes at Chiting.

The first character of Chuge, 屠, is pronounced "zu (z-u)".)

遂如秦州,與苻堅秦州刺史王統相持,天水屠各、略陽羌胡應萇者二萬餘戶。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

Yao Chang then marched to Qinzhou, where he found himself locked in a stalemate with Fu Jian's Inspector of Qinzhou, Wang Tong. The Chuge tribes of Tianshui and the Qiang and other tribes of Lüeyang all came to join Yao Chang, more than twenty thousand households.


40. Years ago, when Qin had extinguished Dai, they had sent Tuoba Shiyijian's youngest son Tuoba Kudei to Chang'an. After Murong Yong led the Western Yan forces east, Murong Yong had appointed Tuoba Kudei as Administrator of Xinxing. Then Liu Xian sent his younger brother Liu Kangni to welcome Tuoba Kudei and support him with soldiers. Together, they encroached on Wei's southern borders, and they caused much disturbance among the tribes.

In Tuoba Gui's own court, there were some of those close to him, Yu Huan and others, who plotted to seize Tuoba Gui and go over to Tuoba Kudei with him. And some of Tuoba Gui's Pennant Officers, Mo Ti of Dai and others, were in secret communication with Tuoba Kudei. Yu Huan's uncle Mu Chong informed Tuoba Gui of the plot, and Tuoba Gui executed Yu Huan and others, five people in all. But Mo Ti and six others were left alone.

But Tuoba Gui still feared more civil strife. He hid at Mount Yin for a time, and then went back to the Helan clan. He also sent his Chief of the Outer Court, An Tong of Liaodong, to Yan to ask them for help. Murong Chui sent Murong Lin to assist Tuoba Gui.


(Tuoba Kudei's move to Chang'an is mentioned in Book 104, in the first year of Taiyuan (376.19).

According to the Records of Ministerial Clans in the Book of Northern Wei, "In Emperor Daowu's (Tuoba Gui's) first year of Dengguo (386), he created six Pennant Officers. They were in charge of the three companies of the Gentlemen of the Palace Guards and the other palace guards, and everyone from the Palace Attendants down and the 中散s up were under their authority."

In Tuoba Jiefen's day, among those clans with extended surnames, there was the Monalou clan, later shortened to the Mo clan.

The Registry of Surnames states, "Regarding the surname 安 An, the King of Anxi (Arsacid, Parthia) had a son who became an attendant, and became a Han man." The Fengsu Tongyi states, "In Han, there was an An Cheng who became an Administrator." The Records of Mount Lu mentions a son of the King of Anxi named Angao.

This was why Tuoba Gui later killed Mo Ti.)


41. In the ninth month, Wang Tong surrendered his province of Qinzhou to Later Qin. Yao Chang appointed Yao Shuode as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Commander of military affairs in Longyou, and Inspector of Qinzhou, and he was stationed at Shanggui.

統懼,乃降。因饗將士於上邽,南安人古成詵進曰:「臣州人殷地險,俊傑如林,用武之國也。王秦州不能收拔賢才,三分鼎足,而坐玩珠玉,以至於此。陛下宜散秦州金帛以施六軍,旌賢表善以副鄙州之望。」萇善之,擢為尚書郎。拜弟碩德都督隴右諸軍事、征西將軍、秦州刺史,領護東羌校尉,鎮上邽。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

Afraid of Yao Chang, Wang Tong surrendered.

Yao Chang held a feast for his generals and officers at Shanggui. A native of Nan'an, Gucheng Shen, stepped forward and said, "My province has an abundant population and formidable natural defenses, and there are so many talented people there could be whole forests of them. It is an excellent base to use for martial endeavors. Yet Inspector Wang could not gather the worthy and pluck out the talented; the land was split into three legs of a tripod, yet he sat and amused himself with his treasures and trinkets. That was what led to the current situation. Your Majesty ought to distribute the gold and silks of Qinzhou among your six armies, while granting honors to the worthy and distinction to the good, in order to gain the hopes of the people of the province."

Yao Chang approved of this advice, and he appointed Gucheng Shen as a Gentleman of the Masters of Writing.

Yao Chang appointed Yao Shuode as Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Commander of military affairs in Longyou, and Inspector of Qinzhou, and he was stationed at Shanggui.


42. At this time, Lü Guang finally heard of Fu Jian's unfortunate demise. He ordered his army to dress in white mourning garb, and he posthumously named Fu Jian as Emperor Wenzhao. In winter, the tenth month, Lü Guang declared a general amnesty, and he changed the reign era title to Da'an.


(The Biography of Lü Guang in the Chronicles of the Book of Jin states that Lü Guang named the reign era 太 Tai'an, not 大 Da'an.)

光始聞苻堅為姚萇所害,奮袂哀怒,三軍縞素,大臨天城南,傳檄諸州,期孟冬大舉。諡堅為文昭皇帝。十月,大赦境內,改建元為太安。(Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms 10, Biography of Lü Guang)

When Lü Guang first heard that Fu Jian had been killed by Yao Chang, he rolled up his sleeves in anguish and fury. His three armies wrapped themselves in mourning garb, and a great funeral procession was held south of the city. Lü Guang distributed proclamations throughout the provinces, calling for a general rising by the first month of winter. He posthumously named Fu Jian as Emperor Wenzhao. In the tenth month, Lü Guang declared a general amnesty within his domain, and changed the reign era title to Tai'an.

光至是始聞苻堅為姚萇所害,奮怒哀號,三軍縞素,大臨于城南,偽諡堅曰文昭皇帝,長吏百石已上服斬縗三月,庶人哭泣三日。光於是大赦境內,建元曰太安。(Book of Jin 122, Biography of Lü Guang)

When Lü Guang first heard that Fu Jian had been killed by Yao Chang, he exerted himself in anguish and fury. His three armies wrapped themselves in mourning garb, and a great funeral procession was held south of the city. He gave Fu Jian the posthumous name Emperor Wenzhao. All his officials, from the Chief Clerks and the One Hundred 石 salary rank officials on up, wore coarse mourning garments for three months, and the common people wept and wailed for three days. Lü Guang declared a general amnesty within his domain, and changed the reign era title to Tai'an.


43. Murong Yong sent envoys to visit Fu Pi, requesting permission for the Western Yan forces to pass through the roads east to return home. But Fu Pi refused to let them by, and he fought Murong Yong at Xiangling. The Qin soldiers were greatly defeated, and both Wang Yong and the Grand Guard General, Ju Shizi, were killed in battle.

Before, when Fu Zuan had come from Chang'an to join Fu Pi, he had a force of more than three thousand strong fellows as his subordinates. Fu Pi was suspicious of him. After Fu Pi's defeat at Xiangling, he was afraid that Fu Zuan might try to kill him, so he fled south with several thousand riders to Dongyuan. From there, he plotted to launch a surprise attack against Luoyang. But Jin's General Who Spreads Might, Feng Gai, marched from Shan to intercept Fu Pi and attack him. He killed Fu Pi, and captured his Crown Prince, Fu Ning, and his Prince of Changle, Fu Shou. Feng Gai sent the captured princes on to Jiankang. There, the Jin court pardoned them rather than execute them, and they were sent to stay with Fu Hong.

Fu Zuan and the Master of Writing and Marquis of Yongping, his younger brother Fu Shinu, led the rest of the Qin army, some tens of thousands of soldiers, to flee south and capture Xingcheng. The other Qin nobles and ministers were lost to Murong Yong.


(During Han, Xiangling county was part of Hedong commandary, and during Jin it was part of Yangping commandary.

Fu Zuan had fled to Fu Pi in the previous year (385.60).

Dongyuan county had already had its name changed to Zhending during Han. The Dongyuan mentioned in this passage was inside of Xin'an county in Henan. Song Bai remarked, "The Wangwu county in the Henan Garrison was where Yuan county in Han's Hedong commandary was. Furthermore, the Yuan county in Jiangzhou was originally the county of that name in Han's Hedong commandary. This was the place where the Duke of Zhou and the Duke of Shao 'divided the realm at Shan'." He also remarked, "Henan Garrison was Henan commandary during Han, and it was administered from Luoyang. Later Han had its capital at Luoyang, and so Henan was under the authority of the Colonel-Director of Retainers. Cao-Wei's Prince of Chenliu, Cao Huan, organized Henan and four other commandaries into Sizhou. Liu Cong organized this territory into Han-Zhao's version of Jingzhou, Shi Hu made it Later Zhao's version of Luozhou, and Fu Jian made it Former Qin's version of Yuzhou. After Emperor Wu of Liu-Song (Liu Yu) entered Luoyang, he once more established the two counties Dongyuan and Xiyuan, and combined them with Hulao to make Sizhou."

Fu Hong had fled to Jin in the previous year, and he had been placed in Jiangzhou (385.38).)


44. After his victory at Xiangling, Murong Yong advanced further and captured Zhangzi. There he proclaimed himself Emperor of Yan, and he changed the reign era title to Zhongxing. He was planning to take Fu Pi's Empress, Lady Yang, as his wife. But Lady Yang stabbed Murong Yong with a sword, so he killed her.


45. On the day Jiashen (November 23rd), Jin's Duke of Haixi and former Emperor Fei, Sima Yi, passed away at Wu.


(Emperor Fei was forty-four when he died.)

太元十一年十月甲申,[海西公]薨于吳,時年四十五。(Book of Jin 8, Annals of Emperor Fei)

In the eleventh year of Taiyuan (386), in the tenth month, on the day Jiashen (November 23rd), the Duke of Haixi (Emperor Fei) passed away at Wu. He was forty-four years old.


46. A native of Yansi, Wu Shen, occupied Qinghe and rebelled against Yan. Murong Chui attacked him, but was unsuccessful.


47. Yao Chang returned to Anding.


(He was returning from Shanggui to Anding.)

萇還安定,修德政,布惠化,省非急之費,以救時弊,閭閻之士有豪介之善者,皆顯異之。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

Yao Chang returned to Anding. He practiced good government, displaying generous and kind conduct and abolishing non-emergency expenditures, in order to relieve the people from the difficulties of the time. And whenever he plucked out some exceptional person from among the commoners, he always exalted and appreciated them.


48. After Fu Deng had taken Nan'an, more than thirty thousands households of both tribal and Xia (ethnic Han) people came to join him. Fu Deng then advanced and attacked Yao Shuode in Qinzhou. Yao Chang marched to Yao Shuode's aid. Fu Deng fought Yao Chang at Hunu Mound and greatly routed him, taking more than twenty thousand heads. Fu Deng's general Tan Qing shot an arrow at Yao Chang and struck him. Yao Chang was heavily wounded, and he fled to defend Shanggui. Yao Shuode led the Later Qin soldiers in his place.


(Hunu Mound was west of Shanggui.)

萇復如秦州,為苻登所敗,語在《登傳》。(Book of Jin 116, Biography of Yao Chang)

Yao Chang returned to Qinzhou, where he was defeated by Fu Deng; this is further mentioned in the Biography of Fu Deng.


49. Murong Lin was leading the Yan soldiers towards Wei. Before he had arrived, Tuoba Kudei had led his troops forward to further threaten Tuoba Gui, and He Rangan invaded Wei's northern tribes in support of his efforts. Everyone in Wei was very frightened by these developments, and the Northern Chief, Shisun Puluo, fled to Liu Weichen.

When Murong Lin heard what was happening in Wei, he sent An Tong and the others on ahead of him to quickly inform Tuoba Gui of his arrival. When the people of Wei knew that the Yan army was close at hand, then they felt a little more secure. Tuoba Kudei advanced and camped at Gaoliu. Tuoba Gui led his troops to join together with Murong Lin, and together they attacked Tuoba Kudei's army. Tuoba Kudei was greatly defeated. He too fled to Liu Weichen, but Liu Weichen killed him.

Then Tuoba Gui gathered his army together again, and he appointed Kudi Gan of Dai as the new Northern Chief. Murong Lin led his soldiers back to Zhongshan.


(During Han, Gaolin county was part of Dai commandary. Jin abolished it. Zheng Daoyuan remarked, "Gaoliu is within Dai. The mountains there are one continuous string of hills, with magnificent clouds stretching far above. These mountains stretch on faintly east, passing out of the realm at Liao Pass."

The Records of Ministerial Clans in the Book of Northern Wei states, "Among the southern tribes, there is the Kudi clan, later shortened to the Ku clan.")


50. Liu Weichen was then residing at Shuofang, and he had a great number of soldiers and horses. Yao Chang appointed Liu Weichen as Later Qin's Grand General, Grand Chanyu, Prince of Hexi, and Governor of Youzhou. Conversely, Murong Yong appointed Liu Weichen as Western Yan's Grand General and Governor of Shuozhou.

慕容永之據長子,拜衞辰使持節、都督河西諸軍事、大將軍、朔州牧,居朔方。姚萇亦遣使結好,拜衞辰使持節、都督北朔雜夷諸軍事、大將軍、大單于、河西王、幽州牧。累為寇害。(Book of Northern Wei 95, Biography of Liu Weichen)

After Murong Yong occupied Zhangzi, he appointed Liu Weichen as Western Yan's Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Commander of military affairs west of the Yellow River, Grand General, and Governor of Shuozhou, residing at Shuofang. For his part, Yao Chang also sent envoys to establish good relations with Liu Weichen, and he appointed him as Later Qin's Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Commander of military affairs of the various peoples of the northern frontier, Grand General, Grand Chanyu, Prince of Hexi, and Governor of Youzhou. Liu Weichen posed a constant threat of invasion.


51. In the eleventh month, Qin's Master of Writing, Kou Yi, fled from Fu Zuan's base at Xingcheng to Fu Deng's base at Nan'an. He brought two of Fu Pi's sons with him: the Prince of Bohai, Fu Yi, and the Prince of Jibei, Fu Chang. Fu Deng then began holding the mourning rites for Fu Pi, and he posthumously named Fu Pi as Emperor Aiping.

Fu Deng proposed making Fu Yi their new ruler. But his people said, "Although the Prince of Bohai is indeed the son of our late lord, he is still very young, and he would not be able to handle so many difficulties. The three miscreants still have their eyes on us. We ought to raise up an adult to be our lord. It cannot be anyone but yourself."

So Fu Deng raised an altar at Longdong, and he declared him Emperor of Qin. He declared a general amnesty, and he changed the reign era title to Taichu. All the imperial offices were created.


(The three miscreants were Yao Chang, Murong Chui, and Murong Yong.

Fu Deng, styled Wengao, was Fu Jian's junior kinsman, two generations removed.)


52. Murong Rou, Murong Sheng, and Murong Sheng's younger brother Murong Hui had been with the Western Yan forces all this time. When Western Yan reached Zhangzi, Murong Sheng said to Murong Rou and Murong Hui, "Our sovereign had already begun the restoration of the state in Jizhou and Youzhou. But now there is this division between east and west. We will certainly fall under suspicion if we stay here. No one, whether wise or foolish, will be able to escape their fate. It would be better for us to go back east at once. We cannot stay here and wait to be killed with the rest of them!" So they all abandoned Western Yan and went east to join Yan. In later years, Murong Yong put all of Murong Jun's and Murong Chui's descendants within Western Yan to death, and neither man nor woman was spared.


(In the ninth year of Taiyuan (384.64), Murong Rou and the others had escaped from the massacre of the Xianbei in Chang'an and fled to Murong Chong. After Murong Chong's death, they followed Murong Yong east.

By "our sovereign", Murong Sheng means Murong Chui.

The division between east and west was Murong Chui in the east and Murong Yong in the west, since both had declared themselves Emperor of Yan.

This passages demonstrates Murong Sheng's intelligence.)


53. Zhang Dayu moved from Xi commandary to Lintao, where he rounded up more than five thousand households, and then held out at Jucheng.


(Jucheng was within Lintao.)

大豫自西郡詣臨洮,驅略百姓五千餘戶,保據俱城。(Book of Jin 122, Biography of Lü Guang)

Zhang Dayu went from Xi commandary to Lintao, where he rounded up more than five thousand households and held out at Jucheng.


54. In the twelfth month, Lü Guang declared himself Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Palace Attendant, Grand Commander of all affairs, Commander of military affairs in Longyou and Hexi, Grand General, Governor of Liangzhou, and Duke of Jiuquan.

十一月,羣寮勸進曰:「長蛇未殄,方掃國難,宜進位元台。」十二月,上光為侍中、中外都督、隴右諸軍、大將軍、梁州牧、酒泉公。(Annals of the Sixteen Kingdoms 10, Biography of Lü Guang)

In the eleventh month, Lü Guang's ministers urged him to advance himself. They said, "The great serpent has not yet been exterminated, and the state must sweep away difficulties on every side. We urge you to advance yourself in title." In the twelfth month, Lü Guang appointed himself as Palace Attendant, Grand Commander of all military affairs, Commander of military affairs in Longyou, Grand General, Governor of Lianzhou, and Duke of Jiuquan.

自稱使持節、侍中、中外大都督、督隴右河西諸軍事、大將軍、鄰護匈奴中郎將、涼州牧、酒泉公。(Book of Jin 122, Biography of Lü Guang)

Lü Guang declared himself Commissioner Bearing Credentials, Palace Attendant, Grand Commander of all military affairs, Commander of military affairs in Longyou and Hexi, Grand General, General of the Household Who Protects The Neighboring Xiongnu, Governor of Liangzhou, and Duke of Jiuquan.


55. Fu Deng set up an ancestral tablet to Shizu (Fu Jian) in the midst of his army, which was moved around in a covered wagon. He raised yellow banners and green canopies around it, and he assigned three hundred of the Rapid As Tigers guards to protect it. Whenever there was something Fu Deng was about to do, he would first report it to the tablet, and only afterwards carry it out.

Fu Deng led his army of fifty thousand soldiers east to attack Later Qin. His soldiers all carved the characters "Die" and "Rest" on their spears and their armor. Whenever they went into battle, they would form their swords and spears into great circle and square formations, which they knew had a well-distributed thickness and toughness. Whoever fought them could make no headway against them.


(Fu Jian's temple name was Shizu.

A cart covered with curtains and canopies on all four sides is called a covered wagon.

A 鉾 is a spear. 鎧 means armor. The idea behind the carvings was that they would only rest after their enemy was dead. Yang Zhengheng remarked, "The Forest of Characters states that a 鉾 was an old word for spear.")


56. Before, when Chang'an was about to fall to Western Yan, Qin's General of the Central Ramparts, Xu Song, and their Commandant of 屯騎, Hu Kong, had each gathered five thousand men in their own fortresses to defend themselves. They later accepted appointments from Later Qin. After Fu Jian's death, Yao Chang had buried him between their two fortresses with the rites due to a king.

When Fu Deng came to that place, Xu Song and Hu Kong surrendered their forces to him. Fu Deng appointed Xu Song as Inspector of Yongzhou and Hu Kong as Intendent of Jingzhao. He had Fu Jian's body reburied, this time with the rites due to the Son of Heaven.


(This passage refers to the time that Fu Jian was under siege in Chang'an by Murong Chong.)


57. On the day Yiyou (January 23rd of 387), Murong Chui attacked Wu Shen's fortress again. This time, he took it, and Wu Shen fled alone on horseback. Murong Chui advanced to camp at Fengguan Slope at Liaocheng.

Earlier, Yan's Horse-Washer to the Crown Prince, Wen Xiang, had run away and made himself the Administrator of Jibei. He was now camped at Dong'a. Murong Chui sent Murong De and Murong Long to attack Wen Xiang. Wen Xiang sent his cousin Wen Pan to guard the southern bank of the Yellow River, and he sent his son Wen Kai to defend Qiaoniao against them.


(At that time, Wu Shen had seized Qinghe in rebellion against Later Yan.

During Han, Liaocheng county was part of Dong commandary. During Jin, it was part of Pingyuan commandary.

During Han, Dong'a county was part of Dong commandary. During Jin, it was part of Jibei commandary.)


58. Murong Chui appointed Tuoba Gui as Western Chanyu and Prince of Shanggu. But Tuoba Gui did not accept these titles.


(Tuoba Gui's refusing to accept titles from Later Yan showed that he aimed not to be inferior to another.)
Last edited by Taishi Ci 2.0 on Sat Sep 15, 2018 10:42 pm, edited 28 times in total.
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The End

Unread postby Taishi Ci 2.0 » Sun May 14, 2017 6:30 pm

On the dark note of Tuoba Gui's future ambitions, I close this account. Further edits and revisions will continue for quite some time, but this is the end of the years that will be covered in this thread.

I chose this scope mostly because I was interested in the rise and fall of Fu Jian, perhaps the greatest figure during this era. But there are many other stories remaining. The period from the founding of Jin, the War of the Eight Princes, the first conquests of the tribal leaders and Jin's unlikely revival in the south has not yet been covered. Nor has the period from after the collapse of Former Qin until Tuoba Gui's ultimate conquest of all the remaining Sixteen Kingdoms and the foundation of Northern Wei, not to mention the many rebellions and usurpations in Eastern Jin during that time and its ultimate replacement by Liu-Song and its successors.

If I begin another ZZTJ project, it will most likely be beginning from the start of the Jin chapters, immediately after where Achilles Fang's Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms leaves off. The final chapters of the Sixteen Kingdoms and Northern Wei's conquests will await some other date.

I apologize to the many fans of Helian Bobo for not covering enough chapters for him to make his appearance. He lives on in our hearts.
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Mon May 15, 2017 2:23 am

350: I want off on Mr. Ran Min's wild ride

1.武衛將軍: General of Might and Defence?

括地志 = Comprehensive Gazetteer

俗謂之石勒城 = It is commonly called “Shi Le City”

3. 閔操兩刃矛 = Shi Min, wielding a double-ended spear (i.e. a spear with a blade on both ends)

5. 豈能總馭英雄,混壹四海乎! = How could they rule over the heroes [of the land] and bring all within the Four Seas back into one whole?

胡尚書之言,可謂識機知命矣。= Minister Hu’s words show an understanding of Heaven’s will.

8. 命慕輿泥槎山通道 = He had Muyu Ni build paths through the mountains.

11. 弃其家從王午在魯口 = He abandoned his family, and joined Wang Wu at Lukou

徒爲人累 = He will simply be a burden to us.

不如去之 = It would be better to let him go. (Not so much doing away as in killing him, but shooing him away.)

而績乃能立義捐家,情節之重,雖古烈士無以過 = And yet Li Ji could give up his family for the sake of righteousness. Not even the heroes of old could surpass his sense of honour and virtue.

了無意識 = without any wisdom

衆情一散,不可複集 = Once they start having second thoughts, we can’t bring their minds together [for our purpose] again.

志存微節,官身所在,何事非君!殿下方以義取天下,臣未謂得見之晚也。= I had a mind to keep intact whatever little honour I had left. My body belongs to my lord (there must be a better way to say this...); in what matter may I act outside of my lord’s will? Your Highness, you have only just began your campaign for the world through exerting your justice, and therefore I would not say I came too late.

12. 守宰 = local administrators

13. 中部俟厘: 俟厘 supposedly is the Xianbei name for the leader of a tribe. 中部 is probably the Central Tribes? Either way the title refers to a Xianbei tribal leader.

先犯前鋒都督慕容霸 = They first went to assault Murong Ba, the commander of the vanguard

突入幕下,霸起奮擊,手殺十餘人,早不能進。由是燕軍得嚴 = They rushed into Murong Ba’s tent. Murong Ba rose and fought back, killing over ten of them with his bare hands. And thus Lubo Zao was unable to advance, and the Yan army was able to reinforce its defences.

我衆彼寡,力不相敵,故乘夜來戰,冀萬一獲利。今求賊得賊,正當擊之,複何所疑!= Our numbers are great, and they are few. As they are no even match ours, they resorted to attack us by night, hoping (冀) against all odds (萬一) to gain advantage over us. We were looking for the enemy, and now we got what we’re looking for. This is the time to strike them. Why should have you have any further doubts?

內史李洪從俊出營外,屯高冢上 = Li Hong led him out of the camp and they went to stay on top of a high mound.

中牙 = the central tent

李洪徐整騎隊還助之 = a while later (徐), Li Hong regrouped a cavalry unit and went back to help him

亦鹿勃早有以挫其銳 = partly due to Lubo Zao’s having dealt a blow to his morale

15. 今不幸爲竪子所困 = But now, I have unfortunately fallen prey to a wicked man (竪子)

17. 能共討者,可遣軍來也 = If you are able to join us in fighting against them, send an army over.

20. 初,段蘭卒于令支 = Earlier, Duan Lan had died in Lingzhi

擁部落南徙 = He led all their tribal people southward.

22. 爲浮梁以濟 = crossed the Yellow River with floating bridges

24. 氐酋毛受屯高陵,徐磋屯好畤,羌酋白犢屯黃白,衆各數萬,皆斬洪使,遣子降于健。: I think the translation should make it more clear that these were indepedent forces, like, “At that time, the Di chieftain was garrisoned at Gaoling, [etc.], and they all submitted to Fu Jian”

苻菁、魚遵所過城邑,無不降附。= All the cities that Fu Jing and Yu Zun passed by surrendered to them.

25. 盡俘其衆而歸 = Ran Min captured all their troops and returned.

26. 物極則反 = Anything taken to the extreme will have the opposite effect

宜因茲大捷,歸身晋朝 = You should use this victory as an occasion to submit yourself to the Jin court.

享松、喬之壽: Long life may be more appropriate than immortality?

27. 少之時能令不中, 今老矣,往往中之 = When I was younger, I could make it so that my shots miss the bull. But now I’m old, and more often than not I’d hit it. 
30. 今來歸附,苟存性命耳 = They have submitted to us just to save their own lives.

以防微杜漸 = to avoid problems from developing.

32. 蔡謨除司徒,三年不就職 = Cai Mo had been appointed Minister over the Masses, but for three years he did not show up for work.

于是帝臨軒 = And so the Emperor held court, (and sent a bunch of people to summon Cai)

自旦至申 = From dawn until the 9th hour (3-4pm)

時帝方八歲,甚倦,問左右曰:“所召人何以至今不來?臨軒何時當竟?”= The emperor, being just 8 years old, was getting tired. He asked his attendants, “Why is the person I’m summoning still not here? When is court over?”

太后以君臣俱疲 = The dowager empress, considering how emperor and ministers alike were getting tired, decreed

必不來者,宜罷朝 = If he’s not coming, let’s dismiss court

中軍將軍殷浩奏免吏部尚書 江虨官: Yin Hao petitioned to remove Jiang Bin from office. (Yin Hao was there at court too, so he just raised his hand and said “please emperor can you fire Jiang Bin”)

會稽王昱令曹曰 = Sima Yu sent an order to the 尚書 office, saying

蔡公傲違上命,無人臣之禮。若人主卑屈于上,大義不行于下,亦不知所以爲政矣。= Lord Cai, in his arrogance, has disobeyed the emperor’s orders (上命 is pretty specifically imperial orders), and displayed a lack of proper behaviour of a minister (the 人 in 人臣 is specifically in relation to the 天 in 天子). If the ruler of men continues to grovel, and his subordinates continue to act in accordance to their station, by what shall we continue to run the government?

公卿乃奏 = And thus the lords and ministers petitioned:

謨悖慢傲上,罪同不臣 = Cai Mo has been haughty and contemptuous towards his lord (慢 is contemptuous, not slow here). His crime is on a par with sedition.

帥子弟素服詣闕稽顙: missing 素服, to dress in plain clothing

待罪 = to await punishment

蔡公今日事危,明日必有桓、文之舉 = If Lord Cai’s life is put in danger today, tomorrow we will see uprisings like Duke Huan of Qi and Duke Wen of Jin (not 100% sure what he’s referring to. Probably just saying that local lords will rise up and overtake the court’s authority )
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Re: The End

Unread postby Lady Wu » Mon May 15, 2017 2:28 am

Taishi Ci 2.0 wrote:I apologize to the many fans of Helian Bobo for not covering enough chapters for him to make his appearance. He lives on in our hearts.

But surely you've missed the story of the greatest family of those times.

I can't believe you aren't going to finish covering even Murong Chui and Murong Sheng.

*goes look for the "delete thread" button*
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Thu May 25, 2017 2:31 am

351 -- Good persuasive skills are useful

2. 既而密使梁安諷玄碩等上尊號: 諷 = to use indirect language to convince someone of something. “Persuade” might work better that “incite”.

段龕請以青州內附 = Duan Kan offered to join Jin, bringing Qingzhou with him.

4.曹孟德養於宦官,莫知所出,卒立魏氏之基。苟非天命,安能成功!推此而言,何必致問!= Cao Mengde was raised by a eunuch and none knew of his true lineage. And yet he finally built the foundation of Wei. If these men did not have the Mandate of Heaven, how could they have succeeded? If you follow this logic, what need have you for these questions?

而像不成 = But the statue was never completed

奸偽之人欲矯天命以惑人者,乃假符瑞、托蓍龜以自重= When evil men try to influence the populace by falsifying Heaven’s Mandate, they all use auspicious omens or results of divinations to puff up themselves.

而更反真為偽,取決於金像乎 = What need does he for confusing truth and falsehoods, and have some golden image decide his destiny?

彼求救者,為妄誕之辭,無所不可,況一璽乎!= People like him who are asking for aid are inclined to spin wild tales. Nothing is beyond the possibility of their tales, not even a seal!

5. 使裕以其私誘之 = He sent Feng Yu to use Chang Wei’s personal interests to sway him.

故運資糧、聚器械於東北者,非以相資,乃欲相滅也。= He kept sending money and grain to the northeast, and stockpiling war equipment there, not for supplying you, but for destroying you.

臣子之心,聞仇讎之滅,義當如何?而更為彼責我,不亦異乎!= As a subordinate (of Yan), how should you act when you hear of the destruction of your (state’s) enemies? But instead, you chastise me for their sake. Is that not a strange thing?

蒙君之惠,速益薪縱火,使僕得上訴於帝足矣!= If you (君) would be so kind, please hurry up and bring more firewood and light the fire, so I can bring my case before the Lord of Heaven (帝 here refers to the diety in early Chinese beliefs, believed to be the highest ruler of all creation)!

且冉閔有罪,使臣何預焉! = Though Ran Min is a criminal, his messenger does not share his crime.

勞之 = to visit, to console him

君何不以實言?王怒,欲處君於遼、碣之表,奈何?= Why don’t you tell the truth? If the Prince gets angry and considers exiling you to the lands beyond Liao and Jieshi, what would you do then?

吾結髮以來,尚不欺布衣,況人主乎!= Since I have become a man (結髮 = the coming-of-age ceremony), I have not lied to even a commoner, let alone a ruler of men!

曲意苟合,性所不能。直情盡言,雖沉東海,不敢避也!= I’m incapable of bending my principles just to ingratiate myself to someone. I am a straightforward man and I speak all and only all I know. Even if they throw me into the East Sea, I will not seek to escape my fate!

遂臥向壁 = [Having said thus,] he lay down facing the wall

8. 姚襄及趙汝陰王琨各引兵救襄國 = Yao Xiang and Shi Kun each led an army to Xiangguo’s relief. (they weren’t marching together)

9 必覆背受敵,此危道也。= We will be attacked from both sides. (覆背 = 腹背) This would be the path to disaster.

不若固壘以挫其銳,徐觀其釁而擊之。= It would be better to strengthen our defences (固: verb 壘: noun) here to take the keenness off their attacks (blunt their morale? Can’t think of words), and slowly (徐) look for rifts (釁) among them, and strike them then.

且陛下親臨行陳,如失萬全,則大事去矣。 = Furthermore (且), with Your Majesty being here in the army in person, if you’re not 100% safe, then our state will be lost (大事去矣 is kind of a euphemism).

進曰: 進 = to petition, to offer suggestion or recommendation to a superior

將何以使將士乎!= how can you inspire your troops then?

不可失也!= You must not let this opportunity slide! (the subject 時機 is implied here)

閔攘袂大言曰 = Ran Min rolled up his sleeves and declared in a loud voice

吾戰決矣,敢沮眾者斬!= I have decided to give battle. Whoever dares to demoralize the troops will part with his head!

悅綰適以燕兵至 = Right then, Yue Wan had just arrived with the reinforcements from Yan.

閔與十餘騎走還鄴: more than 10, right? Maybe “with about a dozen riders”?

It was earlier mentioned that Ran Min’s son, the Grand Chanyu Ran Yin, had a thousand tribesmen as his personal soldiers. = Perhaps set this as a note since this is your commentary and not in the original text?

閔潛還,人無知者。= Ran Min sneaked back to the city without anyone knowing.

because Wei Xiao had earlier warned him not to trust Litekang and the other tribesman whom he had entrusted to his son Ran Yin. : should be a translator’s note

10. 初,閔之為趙相也,悉散倉庫以樹私恩 = Earlier, when Ran Min was serving Zhao, he gave away the contents of the storehouses and granaries to have people indebted to him (or: to build a personal fanbase).

趙所徙青、雍、幽、荊四州人民及氐、羌、胡蠻數百萬口,以趙法禁不行,各還本土 =The people that Zhao had forced to relocate, including the people of Qingzhou, Yongzhou, Youzhou, and Jingzhou, as well as tribesmen of the Di, Qiang, and Human (?????)—several millions in all—began to travel back to their homelands, as the laws of Zhao were no longer enforced.

道路交錯,互相殺掠 = Their paths crossed and they killed and robbed each other.

因以饑疫,人相食,無復耕者。 = Thus there was a great famine and plague. The people resorted to cannibalism, and there were no left to till the fields.

11. 乃公豈假汝為命邪!= D’you think I can’t survive without ya? (super vernacular)

求殺祗以自效 = asking for the chance to prove himself by killing Shi Zhi

12. 寬重斂之稅 = relaxed taxes that were a heavy burden to the people

弛離宮之禁,罷無用之器 = opened up the grounds of the imperial villas to the people, and abolished useless articles of office

凡趙之苛政不便於民者皆除之 = He removed everything from the Zhao’s harsh rule that inconvienced the populace.

13. 屢戰皆敗 = was defeated at every engagement?

健以中書令賈玄碩始者不上尊號,銜之 = Fu Jian bore a grudge against Jia Xuanshuo for not having suggested right from the start that he assume the imperial title

使人告玄碩與司馬勳通 = He had someone report that Jia Xuanshuo was conspiring with Sima Xun (Fu Jian can be a real asshole)

14. “and sent him to capture that place” – can’t find that in the original text

土豪 = powerful local landholder

從弟 = younger cousin?

15. 弈引兵直抵約壘 = Feng Yi led his troops straight to Pang Yue’s fort

以寫佇結之情: literally, “to relieve the feelings of how much we missed each other”. So maybe just “let’s meet up one on one since since I missed you so much”

門外 = outside the gate of his fort?

弈與論敘平生畢 = After Feng Yi finished catching up with him about life

因說之曰 = he started exhorting him

今既獲展奉,不可不盡所懷 = Since you have honoured me with your attention today, I am obliged to tell you all that’s on my mind.

是宜天下服其強矣,而禍亂方始,固知天命不可力爭也 = while it’s true that the realm bows down to his might, calamity and chaos also have just begun. This is proof that one cannot wrest the Mandate of Heaven to oneself by force.

燕王弈也載德: typo for奕世載德—The Prince of Yan and his forebears have practised virtue for generations

民厭荼毒,鹹思有道。= The people are tired of being ruled by tyranny, and all yearn for a ruler who follows the true path. (有道 is short for 有道之主)

虛心賢俊 = he treats wise and talented people with humility

孰與為亡國將,守孤城以待必至之禍哉! = Would that not be better than to be a general of a vanquished state, by guarding your isolated city waiting for the inevitable calamity?

弈豫戒之,俟約氣下,安突前持其馬鞚 = As per instructions that Feng Yi had given him ahead of time, once Pang Yue started to look dejected, Zhang An rushed forward and seized his reins

非欲取君以邀功 = I’m not trying to seek rewards by capturing you

乃欲全君以安民也 = but I’m doing this out of the desire to save (全) you, and through that, to bring peace to the people

以約誘於人而遇獲,更其名曰釣 = As he got Pang Yue because Pang Yue fell for someone’s lure, Murong Jun renamed him to Pang Diao. (diao = to fish for something)

22. 俊釋煒之囚 = Murong Jun released Chang Wei

卿本不為生計,孤以州裡相存耳 = You weren’t really doing much to preserve yourself, and I only kept you alive out of the consideration that we were from the same homeland.

天且念卿,況於孤乎! = If even Heaven takes care of you, how can I do less?

25. 逄釣亡歸渤海,招集舊眾以叛燕。 = Pang Diao escaped and fled back to Bohai, where he gathered up his old followers to rebel against Yan.

使人告諭鄉人,示以成敗 = had someone put out notices to the people, analyzing the situation for them

遂來奔 = And Pang Diao fled to Jin.

27. 以國無他釁,遂得相持彌年,雖有君臣之跡,羈縻而已 = Since there was no other trouble in the state, he was able to stay that way for over a year. Even though he kept up the appearance of being a subordinate of the court, he ran the territories under his control semi-autonomously. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimi_system)

八州士眾資調殆不為國家用 = He kept virtually all the troops and war supplies he levied from the eight provinces away from use by the central court

溫拜表輒行 = He took off as soon as he submitted the petition (i.e., not waiting for a response)

28. 殷浩欲去位以避溫 = Yin Hao wished to resign from his position to avoid clashing with Huan Wen

此屬皆自為計,非能保社稷,為殿下計也。= Yin Hao’s requests are only to save himself, and not to safeguard the state, or for advancing Your Highness’s interests

必有任其責者,非殿下而誰乎!= Who but Your Highness will bear the blame?

彼若抗表問罪,卿為之首。事任如此,猜釁已成,欲作匹夫,豈有全地邪!= If he (Huan Wen) submits a petition of disagreement and comes looking for someone to accuse, you will be the first one in the path of his ire. Since things have gone this far, there is already distrust and animosity between the two of you. Even if you want to go back to being a commoner, there is no way you can preserve yourself!

且當靜以待之 = You should deal with this without rash actions (passively).

令相王與手書,示以款誠,為陳成敗 = Have the Prime Minster write a personal letter to him, demonstrating his sincerity and explaining the situation to him.

若不從,則遣中詔 = If he doesn’t listen to that, then have the emperor personally write him an edict (中詔 = an edict written by the emperor personally and issued directly from the palace, as opposed to edicts dictated and sent through the various court organs)

又不從,乃當以正義相裁 = And if he still does not heed that, then you may send a force of justice against him

奈何無故匆匆,先自猖獗乎 = How could you rush headlong into this and sabotaging yourself right away?

決大事正自難,頃日來欲使人悶。聞卿此謀,意始得了= I’ve just been feeling distraught over having to decide on such weighty matters, and it’s been really worrying me the last few days. But as soon as I heard your plan, my anxiety is gone.

29. 諭以禍福 : while literally this says “instruct him of disaster and fortune”, it really means “analyze the pros and cons for him (implying offering a path that will end well)”.

乃於坐為昱草書曰 = Thereupon, (right there where he was sitting), Gao Song drafted the following letter for Sima Yu:

寇難宜平,時會宜接。= When rebels cause trouble, it is well to pacify them. When the right opportunity presents itself, it is well to seize it.

不可易之於始而不熟慮 = You must not treat it as a light matter at the beginning and not give it thorough thought.

頃所以深用為疑,惟在此耳 = The reason I have been deeply doubtful of your actions lately is precisely because of this.

然異常之舉,眾之所駭,游聲噂□沓,想足下亦少聞之。苟患失之,無所不至,或能望風振擾,一時崩散。如此則望實並喪,社稷之事去矣。= The people are all shocked by your unusual actions. There is an unending flurry of rumours, of which I am sure you would have heard something. When people are worried about losing what they gained, they would stop at nothing (苟患失之,無所不至 is from the Analects). It is possible that they would be swayed or shaken by the rumours, and scatter and fall apart. If this happens, then both what you hope for(望) and what have achieved (實) will both be lost, and this will be the end for the dynasty.

吾與足下,雖職有內外,安社稷,保家國,其致一也。= Although you and I are responsible for different affairs—yours external, mine internal—our goals are the same in ensuring stability of the rule and security of our land.

天下安危,系之明德 = The stability of the realm is inseparable from good virtues.

當先思寧國而後圖其外,使王基克隆,大義弘著,所望於足下。= You must first give thought to bringing tranquility within the state, before planning beyond the borders, so that the foundations of the imperial rule will strengthen and flourish, and Great Justice will be known throughout the land—This is what I hope of you.

區區誠懷,豈可復顧嫌而不盡哉 = This is just a insignificant but earnest thought on my part; how could I not pour my heart out to you just because of worries that you could be doubtful or distrustful of me?
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Fri May 26, 2017 1:44 am

352: Yin Hao refuses to listen; gains priceless calligraphy pieces

2. 且言單于所以統壹百蠻,非天子所宜領,以授太子萇。= He also said that, since the position of Chanyu was to rule over the barbarians, it is not fitting for the Son of Heaven to claim that title. Thus he granted it to Fu Chang, the crown prince.

4.使輔太子智守鄴: Just a nuance thing, but this is more like “...to help the crown prince, Ran Zhi, defend Ye”

以棗強降魏 = handed (the city of) Zaoqiang to Wei

5. 不知使君當何以鎮之 = I wonder how you plan to deal with it.

愚謂宜明受任之方 = IMHO it would be well to clarify the duties of each post... (...and have the Han Xins and Peng Chaos deal with the campaigns, and the Xiao Hes and Cao Shens deal with internal affairs)

深思廉、藺屈身之義,平、勃交歡之謀,令穆然無間,然後可以保大定功也。= You should reflect seriously on the principles that made Lian Po and Lin Xiangru put aside their personal differences, and the approach that had Chen Ping and Zhou Bo be on friendly terms with each other. Ensure that there is harmony (among the ministers) and no cause for divisions, and then you can keep the state secure and achieve great things.

觀頃日降附之徒,皆人面獸心,貪而無親,恐難以義感也。= When I look at the people who have surrendered to us recently, I only see beasts in human forms, greedy to the point of disowning their relatives. I fear it will be difficult to inspire them with the values of righteousness.

6. 北中郎獎: typo for 北中郎將

謝尚不能撫尉張遇: 撫尉 = 撫慰. Xie Shang was unable to mollify (? console? appease?) Zhang Yu

准陰 is Huaiyin

7. 稍徙軍中文武兵民家屬於薊: 稍 = a small amount

8. 子襄秘不發喪 = Yao Xiang kept the death a secret and did not go into mourning.

帥戶六萬: He led 60k families (presumably drawing able-bodied men from them for fighting)

襄與秦兵戰,敗,亡三萬餘戶= Yao Xiang did battle with the Qin army and was defeated. He lost 30k families.

9. 善談論 = he was eloquent with words (literally: he was good at talking)

因游食常山、中山諸郡。= Ran Min travelled and feasted all around Changshan and Zhongshan.

11. 董閏 = Dong Run

益兵 = increase the number of troops

吾君此行,必不還矣 = Our lord will certainly not return from this outing. (the two clauses are not parallel sentenecs)

12. 閔趣常山,恪追之 = Ran Min headed towards Changshan, and Murong Ke kept on his heels.

甲兵雖精,其實難用 = His armored troops are elite, for sure, but it’s hard to put them to good use here. (Seems like Ran Min leads a force comprised mainly of infantry with heavy armour)

閔以所將多步卒,而燕皆騎兵,引兵將趣林中。= Ran Min, thinking that he had mostly infantry while Yan’s soldiers were all mounted, led his troops towards the woods.

吾騎兵利平地 ,若閔得入林,不可複製 = Our cavalry have the advantage on open land. If Ran Min gets to the forests, we cannot subdue him. (平地 should be “open land”)

閔性輕銳,又自以眾少,必致死於我。= Ran Min thinks little of his enemies, and is a redoubtable fighter. As he has few troops, he will definitely fight with all his might. (literally: fight to the death)

乃擇鮮卑善射者五千人,以鐵鎖連其馬,為方陳而前。= He then picked 5000 of the best archers from among the Xianbei, linked their horses together with iron chains, and placed them in the front in a square formation.

大幢 = a large banner

13. 立閔而責之曰 = had Ran Min stand in front of him and chastised him thus

癸巳: what’s the ? after Guisi for?

詹事: manager for the crown prince’s palace

20. 乃自倉垣徙屯棘津: 自 here is “from”, not “on his own initiative”

沈吟未決 = he hemmed and hawed and could not decide

紿之曰: he tricked him, saying

22. 送尚於芍陂 = escorted Xie Shang to Quepi

謝尚降號建威將軍 = Xie Shang was demoted to General Who Establishes Might.

26. 燕人掠其禾稼而還: I don’t think it’s the “remaining grain”—the Yan army looted all the fields before leaving

27. 及乘輿服御 = as well as all the royal carriages and articles of clothing

31. 王羲之 = Wang Xizhi

今以區區江左,天下寒心,固已久矣。= Nowadays, we only have this small piece of land in Jiangzuo (East of the River). The realm has been disappointed in us for a long time.

力爭武功,非所當作。= To keep exerting oneself in order to gain military glory is really not the thing to do.

自頃處內外之任者,未有深謀遠慮 =These days, none of the ministers, responsible for either external and internal affairs, have thought things through and planned ahead.

任其事者,豈得辭四海之責哉!= How can those engaged in such action hold themselves above the blame that all within the four seas cast at them?

保淮之志,非所復及 = We can no more hold on to the desire to protect the lands south of the Huai River.

引咎責躬,更為善治,省其賦役,與民更始 = Let all the officers reflect on their faults, and turn to good administration. Lighten the burden of taxes and corvee labor, and make a fresh start with the people.

使君起於布衣,任天下之重,當董統之任,而敗喪至此,恐闔朝群賢未有與人分其謗者。= Sir, you began as a commoner, and was then entrusted with the great task of upholding the realm. Though you were given the task of supervising and commanding the army, you were defeated so embarrassingly. I fear none of the worthies of the court will step out to share your blame.

若猶以前事為未工,故復求之分外,宇宙雖廣,自容何所!= If you keep thinking that you didn’t do a good job before and thus you should keep pressing to do things beyond your position, no matter how vast the universe is, you will find no place that will accept you.

此愚智所不解也。= This is what my limited mind cannot understand.

為人臣者誰不願尊其主比隆前世!況遇難得之運哉!= What minister does not wish to honour his lord and help him achieve the grandeur comparable to the former ages? Let alone when a hard-to-come-by opportunity presents itself?

豈不可不權輕重而處之也!= How can you not weight the pros and cons when handling such a situation?

內求諸己 = when we examine ourselves

功未可期,遺黎殲盡 = There is no ETA for the great achievement (期 = to have an expected time), and the most of the remnant peoples of the former rule have been killed.

以區區吳、越經緯天下十分之九,不亡何待!= We are trying to use the meagre lands of Wu and Yue to make a bid for nine-tenths of the realm—how is this not a recipe for disaster? (literally, what else can we expect, except annihilation?)

不弊不己 = refusing to stop until we are destroyed

此封內所痛心歎悼而莫敢吐誠者也。= This is the thing that all in our lands lament , but dare not voice honestly.

若不行,恐糜鹿之遊,將不止林藪而已!= If you don’t do that, I fear that nothing but ruins will be left of our state! (the deer thing says “the deer’s wandering paths will not be confined to the woods”, i.e. our cities will be so utterly ruined that they will be overgrown and deer will wander freely there)

33. 浩以軍興 = For the purpose of supplying the army, Yin Hao...

34. 王俠 = Wang Xia

38. 始置百官: not sure how to phrase this, but this means Murong Jun set up the full list of ministerial ranks as befitting of an emperor (before that he would be limited to assigning ranks that a prince had the right to assign)

我承人乏 = seeing how there is a shortage of eligible candidates, I...
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Sat May 27, 2017 2:17 am

353: Jin really needs to get its act together

3.虜張弘、宋修 = Zhang Hong and Song Xiu were captured

11. 秦主健納張遇繼母韓氏為昭儀: I don’t think it actually says that Fu Jian Sr held high regard for Zhang Yu’s stepmom, just that he took her in to be a consort.

遇恥之: More than vexed; Zhang Yu felt insulted by it.

各遣使來請兵。= they all sent messengers to Jin to ask for troops

14. 以燕、秦方強,未有北伐之志 = Since Yan and Qin were just becoming strong, he put off plans to attack northward.

訓厲將士 = and trained his troops

惡其強盛: 惡 is not so much “to fear” as “to despise”, “to hate”. Here it could be that Yin Hao was not so much afraid as he was jealous of Yin Xiang or just plain didn’t like how someone was more capable than he was.

“He sent many assassins to kill Yao Xiang, but the assassins all respected Yao Xiang and informed him of the plot instead.”: Yin Hao, lol, what a fail.

15. 魏憬子弟數往來壽春 = travelled back and forth to Shouchun

襄益疑懼 = Yao Xiang became more full of fear and doubt.

平北每舉動自專,甚失輔車之理,豈所望也!= But General Yao keeps doing things his way. This is no way to work as a team, and not what I was hoping for!

平北英姿絕世,擁兵數萬而遠歸晉室者,以朝廷有道,宰輔明哲故也。= General Yao is an unmatched hero of the ages, with tens of thousands of troops under him. The only reason why he came all this way to offer his services to the House of Jin was because he thought the court was run properly and the chief ministers were wise.

愚謂猜嫌之端,在此不在彼也 = IMHO, it is you, not him, who is causing this suspicion and distrust.

平北姿性豪邁,生殺自由 = The General is cavalier in his actions, killing or letting live as he pleases.

王臣之體,固若是乎? = Is this how a servant of the throne should behave?

平北歸命聖朝 : more like, since General Yao came to pledge his loyalty to the Jin, how could he possibly kill someone who’s innocent?

奸宄之人,亦王法所不容也,殺之何害! = But evildoers have no place under the law. What harm was there in killing them?

16. 浩聞張遇作亂,健兄子輔國將軍黃眉自洛陽西奔,以為安等事已成。= When Yin Hao heard about Zhang Yu’s rebellion and Fu Huangmei’s flight to the west, he thought Liang An got the job done.

“secretly instructed his soldiers to lay ambushs”: should be “ambushes”

17. 左右疾之,譖艾= The people around him became jealous of him and slandered against him.

出為酒泉太守 = He was sent away... (it would be Zhang Chonghua sending him away. Zhang Zuo wasn’t directly involve)

權幸用事,公室將危,乞聽臣入侍。= With those gaining power through favouritism running the show, the ducal family will soon be in trouble. Please allow me to come serve you in the palace.

且言:「長寧侯祚及趙長等將為亂,宜盡逐之。」= There, he said to Zhang Chonghua, “[these people are revolting], you should exile them all.”

20. 至是皆請降於燕 = At this time, they all offered to surrender to Yan.

22. 分置守宰 = He appointed chiefs among them, to supervise them in planting and cultivating.

遣使詣建康罪狀殷浩 = He sent a messenger to Jiankang to report on Yin Hao’s transgressions

23. 涼右長史趙長等建議 = Zhao Zhang et al proposed that...

時難未夷 = With the challenges of our times yet to be overcome... (夷 here means to flatten, to overcome, and isn’t about barbarians)

曜靈沖幼 = Yaoling is young (沖 means young as well... nothing here about wild)

張祚先得幸於重華之母馬氏 = Zhang Zuo had enjoyed the favour of Lady Ma, Zhang Chonghua’s mother

24. 燕衛將軍恪、撫軍將軍軍、左將軍彪等屢薦給事黃門侍郎霸有命世之才,宜總大任: *tears of joy* These are Good Men, all of them. Of course Murong Ba is the most outstanding talent of the world and should be given important things to do. :'-)
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Thu Jun 01, 2017 5:37 pm

354: Jin continues their trend of screwing up campaigns

1. 置百官,郊祀天地,用天子禮樂。= He appointed ministers as in an imperial court, performed the imperial sacrifices to Heaven and Earth, and adopted the rites of the Son of Heaven.

我自武公以來,世守臣節,抱忠履謙五十餘年,故能以一州大眾,抗舉世之虜,師徒歲起,民不告疲。= Our state has, since the time of Duke Wu, been loyal servants of the Jin, holding fast to faithfulness and humility generation after generation for over 50 years. Because of that, we have been able to fight off a world of barbarians; and even though we have been engaged in military action year after year, the people do not complain of weariness.

臣未見其可也 = I don’t see how this will work.

彼士民所以用命,四遠所以歸向者,以吾能奉晉室故也。= The reason why our soldiers and commoners alike have been willing to give their lives to our cause, and why those from afar flock to join us, is because we have been able to honour the House of Jin.

今而自尊,則中外離心,安能以一隅之地,拒天下之強敵乎!= If you raise yourself to be emperor, then everyone will lose their unifying purpose. How, then, can you use the resources of just this small corner of the realm to hold off against all the powerful enemies in the world?

3. 征西將軍桓溫因朝野之怨,上疏數浩之罪= Huan Wen, riding on the court’s displeasure with Yin Hao, submitted a petition listing Yin Hao’s crimes

4. 浩少與溫齊名,而心競不相下,溫常輕之。= Since his youth, Yin Hao had enjoyed the same reputation as Huan Wen. They were constantly competing with each other covertly, and Huan Wen always looked down on Yin Hao.

浩既廢黜,雖愁怨,不形辭色,常書空作「咄咄怪事」字。= After Yin Hao was removed from office, though he was melancholy, he did not show that in his speech or countenance. Rather, he often traced the words “What a strange business” with his finger in the air.

久之,溫謂掾郗超曰 = This went on for a long time, and then Huan Wen said to his subordinate Chi Chao

浩有德有言,向為令僕,足以儀刑百揆,朝廷用違其才耳。 = Yin Hao is virtuous and eloquent. If he had been appointed 尚書令 or 僕射 before, he would have been good at being a role model for the ministers. The court didn’t employ him properly according to his talents.

浩欣然許焉 = Yin Hao accepted it with gladness

將答書,慮有謬誤,開閉者十數,竟達空函。= When he was about to send the response off, he worried that there would be some mistake or error, so he kept opening and closing the envelope to check. At the end, he accidentally sent an empty envelope.

8. 權鎮洛水 = and to garrison at the Luo River for now

9. 秦主健與老弱六千固守長安小城,悉發精兵三萬,遣大司馬雷弱兒等與萇合兵以拒溫。= Fu Jian kept 6000 old or weak men to hold the inner city with him, and sent all 30k elite troops with Lei Ruo’er et al to join up with Fu Chang to face Huan Wen.

溫撫諭居民,使安堵復業。= Huan Wen issued notices to comfort the people, and to command them to continue living and working as before.

不圖今日復睹官軍!: This is literally “We didn’t believe we’d live to see the Imperial Army again!”

11. 然寵遇猶逾於世子= However, he granted Murong Ba more favours than he did the crown prince.

由是俊惡之,以其嘗墜馬折齒,更名曰缺 = Thus Murong Jun resented his brother. As Murong Ba had once lost a tooth, Murong Jun renamed him Murong Que. (The tooth accident might have happened long ago; this was just the reason for the name Murong Jun was giving him now)

俊愈惡之 = Murong Jun became even more jealous of him

12. “more than a thousand Jiangxi refugees under Guo Chang and other leaders arrested Jin’s Interior Minister of Chenliu”: Maybe “held ___ captive” would be better than “arrested”, since the refugees were not in an official position.

以吏部尚書周閔為中軍將軍,屯中堂: I think this should be all one sentence, like the court told Zhou Min to be General of blahblah and sent him to be stationed at Zhongtang.

14. 倜儻有大志,不屑細務 = He was a man of talent and high ambitions, and did not conform to social norms (倜儻= be so talented you’re above social norms) nor worry himself with he minutiae of everyday life.

披褐詣之 = He went, wearing coarse clothes, to seek an audience with Huan Wen.

捫虱而談當世之務: 捫虱 = to pick off fleas. Maybe include the part about how they’re talking about the Most Important Things In The World, not just chitchatting.

15. 初,溫指秦麥以為糧,既而秦人悉芟麥,清野以待之 = Huan Wen had originally planned on feeding his troops with grain from the Qin lands. However, the people of Qin cut down all their crops and cleared the field in anticipation of Huan wen’s arrival.

徙關中三千餘戶而歸 =forcefully relocating 3000+ households back with him. (“Accompanied by” sounds like they chose to go with him, which wasn’t the case)

17. 徑進逼長安 = to attack Chang’an directly

及溫退,乃還 = He only returned when Huan Wen retreated.

溫殺之: Those Jin guys were all dicks. :(

20. 秦東海敬武王雄攻喬秉於雍: I don’t think it says he was wounded? Just "Fu Xiong was attacking Qiao Bing at Yong."

遵奉法度 = and respected the law

交結英豪 = befriending many people with heroic mettle (it should be an active clause here, him actively befriending people rather than people being attracted to him)

21. 與青州刺史朱禿共治厭次 = He was governing Yanci jointly with Zhu Tu, Inspector of Qingzhou.

22. 數延公卿咨講治道: soliciting advice... on how to govern well

承趙人苛虐奢侈之後,易以寬簡節儉,崇儒禮士,由是秦人悅之。= After the cruel tyranny and extravagant excesses of the Zhao rule, Fu Jian provided a new rule of(易 = change) clemency and frugality, and respect for Confucian scholars. Thus the people of Qin were delighted with him. (悅 is a stronger feeling of being pleased than “satisfied”)

24.勞溫於襄陽: 勞 = to provide material or words of comfort, to someone who’s done hard work. So this is more like “The emperor sent these palace peeps to Xiangyang to welcome Huan Wen”
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Wed Jun 07, 2017 2:11 am

355: Because where else are we going to get the senselessly-cruel violence now that the Shis are gone?

2. 牛馬相噉毛。= the cattle and horses resorted to eating hair off each other (the imagery is too good to not be included)

3. 所在屯結 = and they banded together

5. 秦淮南王先幼無一目 : maybe include “lost an eye in childhood”? This whole part was about when he was little.

嘗戲之曰 = once teased him (“used to tease” him sounds like Fu Hong did it all the time)

手格猛獸,走及奔馬 = He was able to wrestle with wild beasts, and run as fast as a galloping horse

6. 賢曰: Xian = Li Xian, Prince Zhanghuai of the Tang (obscure, ain't it)

7. 數而殺之: 數 = to list someone’s crimes and to chastise them (surviving in modern Chinese as 數落). Fu Jian1 killed only Fu Jing.

8. 六夷酋師及大臣執權者,若不從汝命 = Of the chiefs and generals of the tribes, and the powerful ministers, if any does not heed your orders...

10. 未逾年而改元 = to change the reign title before being on the throne for a year

窮推議主,得右僕射段純 = he conducted a thorough investigation to find the originator of this proposal, and found that it was the Deputy Director of the Right, Duan Chun.

12. 昱以去太常王彪之曰: I wonder if the text was mangled. It would make more sense for it to say昱以告太常王彪之,彪之曰

武陵王之志,盡於馳騁數豬而己耳: I found this alternative: 武陵王之志,盡於馳騁畋獵而己耳, which would make more sense (“The Prince of Wuling’s desire is only to ride around and hunt”)

深願,靜之,以安異同之論,勿復以為言!= I pray that you be at ease, so that the rumours may be put to rest. Do not speak of it again!

昱善之。= Sima Yu agreed with that.

14. 上下怨憤 = People of all positions were outraged by him.

祚惡河州刺史張瓘之強: 惡 = dislike, despise, to be jealous of; here it could read “Zhang Zuo hated how Zhang Guan, Inspector of Hezhou, was powerful”

索孚 : You might as well go Suo Fu. Modern Mandarin has screwed up the pronunciations anyway. Back then it would sound like “sok”.

術數 : divination arts in general (數 refers to the math stuff they used in divinations)

並陳祚三不道 = And then he listed three ways in which Zhang Zuo acted wrongly.

瓘聞之 : Probably referring to him finding out about everything, the army and the execution of Wang Luan.

以侯還第 = to send Zhang Zuo back home as a marquis

合眾萬餘人以應瓘 = gathered some 10,000 people to answer Zhang Guan’s call (they went west, grabbed a bunch of people, turned around to go help Zhang Guan)

拉其腰而殺之 = killed him by bending him backwards at the waist

張駿置河州,治枹罕 = Zhang Jun established the province of Hezhou, and its seat of administration was at Fuhan.

15. 皆素所善也 = they were both his long-time favourites

國有大喪,大臣戮死 = There will be an imperial death, and some great ministers would die unnatural deaths

願陛下修德以禳之!= We implore Your Majesty to practice virtue in order to avert the calamities!

皆洛州刺史俱之從弟也 = [the two guys] were both younger cousins of Zhao Ju

有寵於生,乃以俱為尚書令 = because [Zhao Shao and Zhao Hui] had the favour of Fu Sheng, Fu Sheng appointed Zhao Ju as the new Prefect of the Masters of Writing.

汝等不復顧祖宗,欲為滅門之事!= You lot stopped caring about our ancestors, haven’t you, to do such things that would bring about the extermination of the clan!

汝等可自為,吾其死矣! = You may do whatever you want, since I’m going to die soon anyway!

大角在攝提間 = The Great Horn lies between the Left and Right Sheti constellations.

16. 募市人數百 = they gathered several hundreds of people from the city

呼張重華母馬氏出殿 = they called Lady Ma, Zhang Chonghua’s mother, to come out to the hall

立涼武侯玄靚為主 = where they made Zhang Xuanjing the new lord (i.e. they called Lady Ma out to preside over the thing)

祚按劍殿上 = Zhang Zuo, standing at the head of the hall, grasped his sword

暴屍道左 = exposed his body by the side of the road (no burning here; 暴 = to expose)

宋混西走,起兵必不東向狄道。 = If Song Hun had fled westward, when he fielded his army they wouldn’t be going east towards Didao

其水上承姑臧武始澤 = its water comes from the Wushi Marsh of Guzang

17. 推玄靚為涼王: 推 isn’t literally to push, but rather something like to nominate or to put forward someone

眾多歸之 = and many people flocked to him (the focus is on people willingly joining him, not him summoning people)

18. 時江左僑立青、冀、幷、幽四州於江北。: 僑立 = to set up a “surrogate” administrative region in place of a fallen region (to pretend they still own those provinces). This is saying that the Eastern Jin administration designated four areas in the Jiangbei region (the area immediately north of the Yangtze) to be the “pretend” provinces of Qing, Ji, Bing, and You.

進取則屯壽春,守江則多在歷陽、蕪湖二處: I think this is saying, “whenever [Jin] is planning to advance, they station at Shouchun, but if they’re planning to defend by the river, they station by Liyang and Wuhu”

19. 抗中表之儀 = insisted on using the etiquette between cousins (中表 = cousins)

儁,段氏出也,故龕與之抗中表之儀 = Murong Jun was born of a Duan, thus Duan Kan could insist on addressing him as a cousin.

21. 王如故= and Prince of Goguryeo as before

使爲高句麗王如故 = he made Go Soe Prince of Goguryeo like how he was before

23. 見之常切齒 = Lei Ruo’er gnashed his teeth at those two.

韶、榮譖之於秦主生 = They slandered against him before Fu Sheng

於是諸羌皆有離心 : 有離心 = anywhere on the spectrum between “wanted to abandon, withdraw support for Fu Sheng” to “started thinking about betraying him”. It wasn’t just opposing a certain action.

生雖諒陰 = Although Fu Sheng was still in the mourning period

游飲自若,彎弓露刃,以見朝臣 = he cavorted and drank as he pleased; he would draw his bow or unsheathe his blade when in an audience with the ministers.

即位未幾,后妃、公卿已下至於僕隸,凡殺五百餘人 = He killed over 500 people in a short time after coming to the throne (未幾 = not a long time), from consorts and ministers down to servants and slaves.

拉脅 = break their ribs

24. 羆帥精銳拒之於河,幸而戰捷,兄帥大眾繼之,必有大功。= I will lead our crack troops to guard the line of the river. If I am fortunate enough to emerge victorious, elder brother, you may press on the attack with the bulk of our forces, and victory is assured.

若其不捷,不若早降,猶不失為千戶侯也。 = If I lose in the engagement, you should surrender immediately, and you would still get a position as a marquis over a thousand households.
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Re: ZZTJ Translations: The Sixteen Kingdoms Era (Books 95-10

Unread postby Lady Wu » Thu Jun 08, 2017 12:14 am

356: Fu Sheng has the best logic, believe me, the most tremendous logic

1. 齊王友辟閭蔚被創 = Pilu Yu, “Prince-friend of Qi”, was injured.

2. 以佞幸進 = ...for their appointments to office based on their bootlicking (sophistry is just using false arguments to deceive someone)

每朝見,榮未嘗與之言: I think this should really be每朝見,見榮未嘗與之言 = At every court session, when Wang Duo saw Dong Rong, he wouldn’t talk to him.

董君貴幸無比,公宜小降意接之 = Lord Dong is honoured and favoured [by the emperor] above all others. You might want to put your principles aside somewhat (小降意: literally “slightly suppress your ideals”) and interact with him.

而令國士與之言乎! = To demand a high minister of the state to speak with him?!

今天譴甚重,宜以貴臣應之。= The heavens are sending us serious reprimands. It would be wise to have a high minister answer them.

貴臣唯有大司馬及司空耳。= literally: As for high ministers, there are only the Grand Marshal or the Minister of Works.

大司馬國之懿親 = The Grand Marshal is a close relative to the throne

3. 何不強人酒而猶有坐者! = Why are you not forcing them to drink? There are still people sitting upright!

莫敢不醉 = none dared not to get drunk

偃仆失冠,生乃悅。= Only when they were falling over to the point where their hats fell off was Fu Sheng pleased.

4. 將貳於代: I know the last time we had 將貳於 it was “about to defect to Jin”, but I wonder if here it means “about to betray Dai”, since Dai came and whooped his butt.

5. 恪命騰以故職還屯陽都: Ke ordered to him to keep his previous position and return...

恪圍廣固未下,故先招撫其統內諸城 = Murong Ke had not be able to take Guanggu, thus (故) he offered amnesty to the other cities first. (This is a “reason” sentence)

6. 我,晉臣也: I think this should be plural. “We are subjects of Jin”. (i.e. Liang as a whole was not in a position to strike deals with foreign states on their own) 我 was also more commonly used as a plural pronoun.

二君何以來辱?: the object is likely plural “us”

故以風通道會爲言 = thus they used “the same winds and roads join our lands” (as their opener/introduction/argument for why the two lands should be in communication)

下隳士民之節 = to break the people’s sense of loyalty

晉室衰微,墜失天命,固已久矣 = The Jin has long been on the decline and lost the Mandate of Heaven.

是以涼之先王北面二趙,唯知機也 = That’s why Liang’s former lords served the two Zhaos—they understood Heaven’s designs.

則非秦之敵 = he will not be able to match Qin in strength

欲以小事大,則曷若捨晉事秦,以保福祿乎!= But if he desires to bring his lesser state to serve a greater one, then why don’t he consider abandoning Jin and serve Qin instead, so that his best interests are guaranteed?

向者石氏使車適返,而戎騎已至 =Once, in the past, the Shis had sent us an envoy. As soon as his carriage departed, their riders were on our doorstep. (I know this doesn’t match exactly with HSX’s note, but this really is about the carriage of the Shis’ envoy turning back to Zhao)

自古帝王居中州者,政化各殊 = Since ancient times, emperors who held the Central Lands have all adopted different policies and cultures.

趙為奸詐,秦敦信義,豈得一概待之乎!= Zhao employed guile while Qin honoured trustworthiness. How can you generalize over us?

槪所以平斗斛,一槪待之,言無所高下也: I’m not sure you need to translate this one. This says, “A 槪 is a thing (scraper) for levelling measuring scoops. The phrase一槪待之 (‘to treat it with the same gai’) means to give equal treatment to two things”

負、殊姑爲是言耳。= Yan Fu and Liang Gu were just making it up.

則天下盡為秦有 = And then all under the Heavens will come to belong to Qin.

道污先叛,化隆後服 = They would be the first ones to rebel when the state stops upholding its principles, and will only come to submission when morality and culture flourish.

主上以為江南必須兵服,河右可以義懷,故遣行人先申大好 = Our lord believes that the Southland must be conquered by force, while the lands west of the Yellow River can be brought into the fold through appealing to reason. This is why he sent us as emissaries of good will.

則江南得延數年之命,而河右恐非君之土也 = then the Southland will get to hang on for a few more years yet, while the lands west of the Yellow River, we fear, will no longer be yours.

且正朔所在也 = The proper reign was there as well. (正朔 = calendar; by extension, the proper government)

負、殊吠堯刺由,知各爲其主而已!: 吠堯 is short for the saying 桀犬吠堯, “Jie’s dog would bark at Yao”, meaning the lackeys of an evil person would insult a sage just because they’re loyal to their lord. 刺由 is short for 跖客刺由, “Robber Zhi’s henchmen would assassinate even Xu You”. Robber Zhi was an infamous bandit during the Spring and Autumn times, and Xu You was a wise man and hermit in the times of the Mythical Kings: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xu_You_(hermit)) . The whole thing is saying, Yan Fu and Liang Shu are just like dogs who would bark at King Yao, or henchmen who would assassinate Xu You (i.e. blindly attacking an opponent because they’re someone’s henchmen). Know that they were just doing their duty to their lord.

汚,猶殺也 = “The meaning of汚is similar to ‘kill’”

世之說者以爲荊、楚輕悍,道汚先叛,化隆後服 = Commentators suggested that because the people of Jing and Chu were reckless (輕 = reckless, cavalier, not caring about rules) and fierce, they would be the first to rebel when blahblahblah (see above)

故負、殊亦以此斥言江南 = And thus Yan Fu and Liang Shu used this line to disparage the Southland.

我跨據三州: “We”

帶甲十萬: really just “we have 100k armed men”. 帶甲 is referring to the soldiers, not the outfitting.

西苞蔥嶺 = In the west we control the Pamirs (https://zh.wikipedia.org/zh-hant/%E5%B8 ... 8%E5%8E%9F)

東距大河 = In the east we hold the Yellow River

伐人有餘,況於自守 = We have more than enough to attack others, let alone defending our land.

函 = Hangu Pass

民物之饒 = The abundance of people and resources

有囊括關中、席捲四海之志 = Du Hong and Zhang Ju had the ambition to conquer the world

先帝戎旗西指,冰消雲散,旬月之間,不覺易主 = But as soon as our late lord pointed his banners to the west, their forces vanished like melting ice and clouds dispersing. In the time of a fortnight or a month, their lands changed hands.

主上若以貴州不服,赫然奮怒,控弦百萬,鼓行而西,未知貴州將何以待之?= If our lord erupts with anger due to your province’s refusal to submit, and he fields an army of a million and have them beat the drums and march westward, I would like to know how your province would deal with that? (何以待之 = to use what to wait for/deal with it)

涼王雖英睿夙成 = Although the Prince is bright and wise for his age (夙 = early; 成 = to mature)

君居伊、霍之任,國家安危,系君一舉耳 = Sir, you are in the position of Yi Yin and Huo Guang. Your state’s survival or destruction depends on the one move you will make.

7. 飛未至而度退 = Liu Du retreated before Wang Fei arrived.

8. 以討姚襄 = [the court appointed him this and that] for the purpose of campaigning against Yao Xiang

9. 治渭橋 = to construct a bridge over the Wei River

10. 發屋拔木 = tearing up roof-tiles and trees alike

或稱賊至 = someone said that the bandits were coming

秦主生推告賊者,刳出其心 = Fu Sheng investigated into who started the talk about bandits, and carved out his heart.

鑿其頂而殺之 = killed him by hammering a chisel through the top of his head

風捲屋瓦,抓簷桷爲發屋 = “發屋” means when the wind tears up roof tiles and rips out the eaves.

11. “Zhou Cheng's seizure of Luoyang”: nitpicky here but “seizure” sounds like he was convulsing.

12. 君臨萬邦 = and am lord over many lands

嗣統以來,有何不善,而謗讟言之音,扇滿天下!= What have I done wrong since I took the throne, that the realm is filled with slanders and rumours against me?

行者比肩,未足為希。方當峻刑極罰,復如朕何!= The roads are filled with people (行者 = pedestrians 比肩= rub shoulder-to-shoulder); you can’t say the they’re becoming sparse. This is just the time to implement harsh laws and extreme punishments. What can you do about me anyway?!

自去春以來 = since the previous spring

晝則繼道 = they roamed the streets in the day

and rather than eat one of the Six Livestock: “rather than eating livestock” (“Six Livestock” is just a generic term)

而為害不息 = but the beasts continued their scourge of the land

秦群臣奏請禳災 = All the minister of Qin petitioned together, for offerings to be made to Heaven to halt the calamity

何禳之有!且天豈不愛民哉,正以犯罪者多,故助朕殺之耳!= What’s the point in making offering? Furthermore, would Heaven not care for the people? It’s exactly because there are many evildoers, that it’s helping me kill them!

13. 或為它寇所乘 = other enemies might take advantage of us (寇 is bandit, but also used as a disparaging term for enemies in general)

14. 與寮屬登平乘樓望中原 = he and his colleagues and subordinates went up to the Pingcheng deck of his ship and gazed towards the Central Plains

and everyone rejoiced: not in the original text.

平乘樓,大船之樓 = the Pingcheng deck was a deck on a large ship

15. 姚襄撤圍拒之,匿精銳於水北林中 = Yao Xiang broke off his siege to defend against Huan Wen, hiding his best troops in the woods on the north bank of the Yi River.

願敕三軍小卻,當拜伏路左。= If you would please order your army to draw back somewhat, we would certainly kneel by the side of the road and offer our submission.

無豫君事 = I’m not here to interfere with your business.

親被甲督戰 = personally donning armour to direct the battle.

民棄妻子隨襄者五千餘人 = Over 5k commoners abandoned their families to join Yao Xiang

襄勇而愛人 = Yao Xiang was brave and kind to the people

民知襄所在,輒扶老攜幼,奔馳而赴之 = whenever the populace knew where Yao Xiang was, they would rush to join him, bringing their old and young with them.

溫軍中傳言襄病創已死 = there was a rumour in Huan Wen’s camp that Yao Xiang had already died of his injuries. (no indication who started it or what the reason for it was)

許、洛士女為溫所得者,無不北望而泣 = Men and women from Xuchang and Luoyang who were captured by Huan Wen all looked north and wept.

襄神明器宇,孫策之儔,而雄武過之。= Yao Xiang is wise and large-minded, just like Sun Ce, but in valour he surpasses even the latter.

16. 表鎮西將軍謝尚... He petitioned for Xie Shang...

以尚未至 = Since Shang had not arrived yet, [he left some guys behind and relocated a bunch of people]

執周成以歸 = And returned, with Zhou Cheng as a captive.

後遂因之 = Later administrations continued that custom.

17. 襄為平所敗,乃與平約為兄弟,各罷兵。= Yao Xiang was defeated by Zhang Ping, and thus he swore an oath of brotherhood with Zhang Ping, and each withdrew his troops.

《通鑑》 = Tongjian

18. 城壞 = the city walls were damaged

蓋僑縣也 = it was a surrogate county (see notes for 355)

20. 陛下無它疾,食棗多耳。 = Your Majesty don’t really have any illness, apart from having eaten too many dates. (耳 = 而已, “that’s all”, “it’s just that”)

21. 諸將請急攻之 = His officers asked him to speed up the assault.

有宜緩者,有宜急者 = there are times when it’s better to go slowly, and there are times when it’s better to speed up.

若彼我勢敵,外有強援,恐有腹背之患,則攻之不可不急。= If the enemy is equally strong as we are, and they have strong reinforcements coming and threatening to attack us from both sides, then (則) we must be speedy in our attack.

若我強彼弱,無援於外,力足制之者,當羈縻守之,以待其斃: “若我強彼弱,無援於外,力足制之者” is the topic of the sentence, like, “if若我強彼弱,無援於外,力足制之者 is the case, then...” . So, this is “In the case where we are stronger than they are, and we have enough strength to subdue them as they have no external help, then we should dig in and surround them and wait for them to fall apart on their own.

正謂此也 = That describes our situation exactly.

龕兵尚眾,未有離心。= Duan Kan’s troops are still numerous and they are still united.

濟南之戰,非不銳也,但龕用之無術,以取敗耳。= It wasn’t that they were poor fighters in the Battle of Jinan. It was only because Duan Kan did not direct them well, thus bringing about his own defeat. (These lines are emphasizing that Duan Kan’s troops are strong despite earlier losses, which is why pressing an assault wouldn’t be a good idea)

今憑阻堅城,上下戮力,我盡銳攻之,計數旬可拔,然殺吾士卒必多矣。= Now they are behind natural barriers and strong walls, and men in all ranks are fighting as one (戮力 = to work together, to put everyone’s strength together). If we send all our elite troops to attack them, we could take the city in probably just around a month, but (然) we will certainly suffer many casualties.

自有事中原 = Since we began campaigning in the Central Plains

吾每念之,夜而忘寐,奈何輕用其死乎!= Every time I think about that, I can’t sleep at night. How could I throw them so lightly to their deaths?

要在取之,不必求功之速也!= The key is in taking the city. There is no need in seeking for quick glory!

非所及也。= We would never have thought of that.

齊人爭運糧以饋燕軍 = The people of Qi rushed against each other to provide the Yan army with grain.

22. 龕嬰城自守 = Duan Kan barricaded his city

樵采路絕 = Even the trails used by woodcutters and herb-gatherers were blocked off.

恪破之於圍裡 = Murong Ke routed him within the encirclement

龕身自沖蕩 ,僅而得入 = Duan Kan personally fought through the Yan siege and escaped into the city alone.

以段龕為伏順將軍 = General of Obedient Submission.

時外築長圍,故戰於圍裏。= At that time, the Yan army had constructed a fence outside the city, thus they did battle within the encirclement/fence.

23. 大長秋 = manager of the Empress’s staff

得彌從子立、嶷孫巖於山中 = found [the kids] in in the hills

請與相見 = He invited them over to meet them.

25. 帝及群臣皆服緦: should probably indicate that the linen (more likely coarse linen) was the clothing of mourning. They were mourning for 3 days in the Palace.

景帝陵曰峻平,文帝陵曰崇陽,武帝陵曰峻陽,惠帝陵曰太陽: I wonder if the “names” were the names of the mountains they were buried on. Seems weird for the tombs to have names.

緦,十五升布,抽去其半: Ok, so a 升 is a unit of thread count. From http://ctext.org/dictionary.pl?if=gb&did=2655 : “Court robes were made with fifteen skeins (1200 threads) in the warp. Half that number made the coarse cloth for the shortest mourning.”
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