Gongjin's Campaign Memorials
Gongjin's Campaign Memorials

Lu Zhi 盧植 was a politician, general and scholar who served the Han dynasty. He took to the field of battle during the Yellow Turban Rebellion and also played roles against the Eunuchs in 189 and Dong Zhuo thereafter, warning He Jin against summoning Dong Zhuo and later warning against Dong Zhuo’s displacement of Emperor Shao.

Lu Zhi died in 192. He was survived by a son, who served Wei.

History of the Later Han official biography [translation][]

  Lu Zhi, style name Zigan, was a native of Zhuo commandery [in You province]. His height was eight chi and two cun,[n 1] and the sound of his voice was like that of a giant bell. When he was young, he was taught by Ma Rong 馬融 along with Zheng Xuan 鄭玄, and he was erudite, and proficient in both ancient and contemporary studies. He enjoyed profound learning, but was never a man in pursuit of literary perfectionism. Ma Rong was from a powerful clan on the maternal side of the imperial family.[1] When he gave a lecture, he usually brought in female singers and dancers who performed in his classroom. Lu Zhi worked for Master Ma as a teaching assistant for years, but he never turned his eyes in their direction. Ma Rong admired him for such concention. After his graduation, he returned to his hometown, where he worked as a teacher at home, with his doors closed. He was dutifully firm and resolute, with great integrity. He bore big ambitions to govern and benefit the people. He did not indulge himself in poetry and verses. He could drink a dan of liquor.

[1] Ma Rong was a nephew of Empress Mingde 明德.

  At that time, General-in-Chief Dou Wu 竇武, who was father of the Empress, provided substantial support for the enthronement of Emperor Ling 靈. The General began to assume power for confidential and important political affairs. Officials at the imperial court proposed to grant noble titles to him. Although Lu Zhi was a commoner, he knew that Dou Wu was a man with a good reputation. Therefore, he wrote a letter to persuade the General. In the letter, he wrote,

This is Lu Zhi. I heard that even a widow does not worry about the shortage of her yarns;[1] and the girl of Qishi wailed with her back leaning on a pillar.[2] Both women were not worried about their personal matters, instead they felt worried for their states. It was a noble and patriotic feeling to bear profound concerns and thoughts for distant future.[3] Intellectuals need to have honorable friends who may discipline each other.[4] Classic of History (Shū) suggests, ‘The state needs to consult commoners.’[5] Classic of Poetry has a verse reading, ‘The state needs the advice of firewood gatherers.’[6] I have been a reader of your books for very long time. How can I keep my blind suggestions reserved?[7] Today, your role to the Han Empire, is as important as that of Dan and Shi to the Zhou court.[n 2] The enthronement of a wise monarch is of great importance to the people of the entire country. Concerning public opinions, people believe that this is your most important contribution. The people of the entire country are laying their eyes and ears on you.[8] They say you are to enjoy great blessings of harmonious wind for your previous achievements.[9] According to Spring and Autumn, if the queen has no heirs, the imperial court should select an elder candidate from the Imperial House. If the candidates are of the same age, the selection is determined by their integrity. If they are of equal integrity, the selection is determined by divination.[10] Now, the legitimate heir has taken the throne. The enthronement is carried out in accordance with the genealogy of the Imperial House in an orderly manner. Is there such a thing as contribution? Can you attribute the maneuvers of the Heaven to yourself? It is a wise choice for you to decline such rewards to retain your reputation.[11] Recently, the Imperial House did not have enough candidates for the throne, and they tried to seek candidates for the throne from outside.[12] Such a situation could be dangerous. Many parts of the Empire were not peaceful. Rebels and bandits took their opportunities to start rebellions. In places such as Hengyue and Bojie,[13] rebels and bandits were particulary rampant. An upheaval is likely to happen, and it might be similar to Chu people’s coercion against Prince Bi and the enthronement of Prince Chao by Yin.[14] You should comply with the rite of ancient times, grant official posts to the princes, summon the beloved sons of princes and marquises, as well as the virtuous and talented members of the Imperial House to the court. Outside the court, we shall uphold the righteous and moral principles. Inside, we shall suppress our desires for power and benefits. The imperial court should select virtuous and talented people and grant them official titles when necessary. This is a way to strengthen the trunk and weaken the branches.”[15]

  Dou Wu accepted none of the suggestions. The province and commandery summoned him a few times, but Lu Zhi refused all the appointments. During the years of Jianning,[n 3] when the government summoned him as Academician (bóshì 博士), he began to work in the government. In the fourth year of Xiping,[n 4] barbarians in Jiujiang started a rebellion. The Four Offices selected Lu Zhi as the Grand Administrator of Jiujiang for his excellence in both civil and military services. The rebels surrendered. Later, he suspended his service due to his illness.

[1] In Zuo zhuan 左傳, Fan Xianzi 范獻子 said, “People said, if a widow worried about the fall of the Kingdom of Zhou rather than the shortage of yarns, it was because she feared that the calamity might threaten her.” Du Yu wrote a note that says, “The character li 嫠 means ‘a widow’. A weaver usually feels worried about the shortage of yarns, and this is an anxiety that is appropriate for a widow to have.”
[2] Qincao 琴操 says, “The girl in Qishi in the State of Lu wept while leaning on a pillar. Seeing her in such great sadness, her neighbour asked her, ‘Do you want to marry someone so badly? Why are you weeping so sadly?’ The girl said, ‘Oh! You have no big mind. You know nothing of me. In the past, a national of Chu irritated his monarch, and he fled to my employer’s home. His horse escaped, and it tramped on the mallow in my garden. I had no vegetable to eat for an entire year. My neighbor who lived next to my house on the west side lost a goat, and it did not return. He asked my brother to chase and retrieve it. There was a thick fog and a flood. My brother was drowned. I had no brother in the rest of my life. All such problems were caused by politics. I worried about the state and the people, and that’s why I wept. How can you say that I want to marry someone badly?’ She felt sad for herself, and she was suspected by others. Therefore, she grabbed her skirt and walked into the mountain, where she saw a privet tree (the tree of female chastity). She had a long sigh, played the zither, sang a song of chastity, and hanged herself.”
[3] The preface 序 for Classic of Poetry 詩 says, “The virtues of profound concerns and thoughts, and thrift and rite are a legacy of Emperor Yao.”
[4] The Classic of Filial Piety says, “If someone has a forthright friend, they would not be involved in unjust situations.” Classic of Poetry says, “(The making of a gentleman) requires cutting and abrasion.” Zheng Xuan wrote in his note, “The processing technique for making bone wares is cutting. The processing technique for ivory is abrasion. This means the criticisim between friends is similar to the processing techniques for bones and ivory.”
[5] The chapter of “Hongfan” in Classic of History says, “It is necessary for statesmen to consult intellectuals and commoners.”
[6] The volume of Daya in Classic of Poetry says, “The ancestors said that even a woodman is to be consulted.” Mao Chang wrote in his note, “The word 芻蕘 churao means a woodman.”
[7] The character 瞽 gu means the state of blindness.
[8] In History of Han, Jia Shan says, “What you do would be seen by the eyes and heared by the ears of all the people.”
[9] The explanation for the word 景風 jingfeng can be found in Heji 和紀.
[10] In Zuo zhuan, Prince Chao says, “According to the late King, when the Queen did not give birth to a child of her own, the eldest son should be selected for the enthronement. If there are candiates of the same age, the enthronement should be determined by their virtues. If they are of the same degree of moral performance, the enthronement should be determined by divination. Such is an ancient institution.”
[11] The character 叨 dao means greed. Zuo zhuan says, “A greedy man may consider the work of Heaven as his own achievement.”
[12] The character 競 jing is an adjective, meaning “strong”.
[13] In the word Bojie, bo means Bohai 勃海, and jie means the mountain of Jieshi 碣石.
[14] Zuo zhuan tells two stories. Prince Bi was the song of King Gong of Chu. When King Ling was enthroned, Prince Bi fled to State of Jin. When King Ling died, Prince Bi returned to Chu from Jin, and he took the throne. His younger brother Qiji desired to usurp him. Qiji ordered some people to run and shout, “The King arrived.” The people in the State of Chu were terrified, and Prince Bi committed suicide. Prince Chao was the son of King Jing of Zhou and his concubine. When King Jing died, Prince Meng was enthroned as the new King. Yin was a minister in the Zhou Kingdom. He helped Prince Chao assume the throne and replace Prince Meng.
[15] This is a simile with a tree. In this simile, the capital is likened to the trunk, whereas other places are likened to the branches. History of Han says, “When the Han Empire rose, it established Chang’an as its capital. The Imperial Court relocated the Tian clan from the State of Qi, the House of King Zhao, the clans of Qu and Jing from the State of Chu, and the meritorious statesmen at the Changling Mausoleum. This is probably a way to strengthen the trunk and weaken the branches. It is done not for the guarding of the mausoleum.”

  Lu Zhi wrote two books, The Passages and Sentences of the Classic of History (shàngshū zhāngjù 尚書章句) and To Understand the Three Books of Rites (sān lǐjiě gǔ 三禮解詁).[1] At that time, Inscription of Classics of Imperial College was created for the first time in order to set a standard edition for the text of the Five Classics. Lu Zhi submitted a memorial to the throne. In the letter, he said,

When I was young, I learned from erudite scholar Ma Rong, who was Grand Administrator of Nan commandery. I received an education of ancient studies, and I know well that there is much redudancy in the text of the present version of Book of Rites.[2] In the past, I thought the classics in Book of Rites might cause inaccuracy of meaning.[3] I was not daunted by my foolness and shallowness to offer explanations of the book. However, my family was impoverished, and I could not afford to transcribe my manuscript.[4] I am willing to visit Dongguan (Imperial Archives) with two scholars. With government subsidies, we can concentrate on the studies of the text of Classic of History, and we may research the Book of Rites for its gains and loss. By doing so, we may edit a final revised version of the sacred scriptures and publish the revised text for the stele inscription. The ancient text that resembles tadpoles is more faithful to the genuine meaning. However, popular opinions do not consider it important, and its status is suppressed into insignificant learning.[5] Since the Restoration, erudite scholars, such as Ban Gu, Jia Kui, and Zheng Xing and his son, all enjoyed the studies of rites and music, and they were also proficient in the studies of Classic of Poetry and Classic of History.[6] At present, Maoshi (Classic of Poetry edited by Mao School), Zuo zhuan, and Rite of Zhou are still in distribution. They are complements to Spring and Autumn.[7] The government should establish the academic title of boshi (Academician) as academic official in order to educate the future generations and spread the ideas of the ancient sages.
[1] The character 詁 gu means understanding.
[2] The word 回冗 huirong means “indirect and redundant”.
[3] The character 秕 bi means blighted grain, which means distortion and inaccuracy.
[4] The character 繕 shan means to transcribe. This sentence means that he could not afford to transcribe his manuscript due to poverty.
[5] The ancient text is the books in Confucius’s walls. The ancient text appears like tadpoles, thus it earned such a name. History of Han considered the study of text an “insignificant learning”.
[6] Zheng Xing had many sons, and there is a biography of him. Zuo zhuan says, “They enjoyed rites and music, and they are proficient in Classic of Poetry and Classic of History.”
[7] This means the text and the meaning can be correlated. History of Han says, “The books of Hetu and Luoshu resemble vertical and horizontal yarns. The Eight Trigrams and the Jiuzhang are supplementary to each other.”

  It happened that the Southern Barbarians started a rebellion. Knowing that Lu Zhi had benevolent governance and was trusted by the people in Jiujiang, the Imperial Court appointed him as Grand Administrator of Lujiang commandery. Lu Zhi exercised good governance, knowing exactly what to do. He made sure that his government did not disturb the peace, dealing with just the most important of issues.

  More than one year later, the Imperial Court appointed him as Gentleman Consultant again. He worked together with Advisory Counsellor Ma Midi, Gentleman Consultant Cai Yong 蔡邕, Yang Biao 楊彪 and Han Shuo 韓說 at the Eastern Pavilion (or Imperial Archives, Dōngguān 東觀), where they edited various books from the palace’s collections, the Five Classics (Wǔjīng 五經) and wrote a supplement to Han ji (Annals of Han).[1] Considering this as not urgent, the Emperor appointed him as Palace Attendant, and then promoted him as Master of Writing (shàngshū 尚書). In the first year of Guanghe,[n 5] a solar eclipse appeared. Lu Zhi submitted a confidential memorial to the throne. In the letter, he wrote an admonition to the Emperor,

I read in Wuxing zhuan that ‘When the sun turns dark and the moon appears, it is a solar eclipse. It represents the laxation of kings and marquises.’ This phenomenon signifies the weakness of the Emperor and the pride of his subordinates.[2] The Spring and Autumn Annals says, ‘The Emperor stays away from the main hall and delays his meal.’[3] This means the Emperor should avoid any action when an eclipse takes place. Recently, the solar eclipse lasted from morning till over high noon. When the sun was fully eclipsed, it was covered by clouds. In recent years, an earthquake happened, and comets appeared frequently. I heard that Han rose to power with the symbolic virtue of Fire, and the State is supposed to govern people with mercy and wisdom. Your Majesty needs to avoid particularly the lust for women and slanderous talk, because Fire fears Water. The anomalies that happened this year were all caused by the weakened yang due to the disturbance of yin. There must be solutions for us to eliminate and prevent disasters. Here, I seriously propose eight suggestions. First, the Imperial Court should appoint wise and moral talents as officials. Second, the Court should pardon those who were convicted in the Partisan Prohibition.[4] Third, prevent the evil atmosphere.[5] Fourth, prepare defense against rebels and invaders. Fifth, cultivate rite. Sixth, comply with the principles of Emperor Yao. Seventh, discipline the subordinates. Eighth, share benefits. When it comes to talent selection, the Imperial Court should order the provinces and commanderies to select wise and moral people, and recommend and employ them based on their talents.[6] Concerning the pardons, most of the convicted people during the Partisan Prohibition were innocent. They could be pardoned, and their sentences could be repealed.[7] As for the prevention of evil atmosphere, Empress Song was backstabbed by Wang Fu and Chen E, and she died in rage. Her father and brothers were executed unjustly. Their corpses were abandoned, and their relatives were not allowed to claim the corposes for burial. The outbreak of plagues was all caused by this. Your Majesty need to issue an edict to arrange the burials, so that the deceased can rest in peace.[8] Concerning defense preparation, princes and marquises desire to start rebellion if their revenue of levy decreases. The Imperial Court should make sure that they have sufficient supplies so as to prevent such disasters. For rite cultivation, the Court should summon people with excellent moral cultivation, such as Zheng Xuan, to disseminate the principles in Hongfan and ward off woes. For the compliance with Emperor Yao, currently, the Grand Administrators and Inspectors usually would have a few transfers within one month. It is better that the Court promotes the wise ones and dismiss those who are not, so as to differentiate the competent and incompetent officials. If the Imperial Court cannot evaluate their performance every nine years, it is reasonable for the Court to do so every three years.[9] Concerning disciplining the subordinates, networking and gift-giving can be banned.[10] The matter of talent recommendation can be given to dedicated supervisors. It is an obligation for the Emperor to keep no personal benefits. The Emperor is supposed to take charge of important matters and avoid trivia.[11]

The Emperor did not accept the suggestions.

[1] The word zhongshu 中書 means the books collected by the imperial palace.
[2] Wuxing zhuan 五行傳 (“Account on the Five Powers”) is a book written by Liu Xiang 劉向. The character 朓 means that the moon travels ahead of the sun, therefore it appeared earlier than usual. Liu Xiang believed that the subordinate officials would be proud and arrogant when the authority of the monarch is weakened, and that is why the sun travels more slowly than the moon.
[3] Zuo zhuan says, “After the spring equinox and before the summer solstice, if there are anomalies with the sun, the moon and the stars, the monarch should stop enjoying music, move out of the main chamber of the palace, and delay his meals.” Du Yu wrote in his note: “The monarch should avoid staying in the main hall of the palace and delay his meal.”
[4] Suspend the Partisan Prohibition and pardon the imprisoned people involved in the cases.
[5] This refers to the prevention of evil atmosphere that causes plagues.
[6] The character he 覈 means genuine.
[7] The character hui 回 means distorted.
[8] Framed by Wang Fu and Chen E, the Empress died in fear and indignation. Her father and brothers were all executed. Emperor Ling dreamt of Emperor Huan, who said in anger, “Why did you take Empress Song’s life when she was innocent? I have told Heaven, and the Lord was furious. There is no one who can save you.”
[9] Classic of History says, “After three years in service, the performance of the officials should be evaluated for promotions and dismissals.” Kong Anguo wrote in a note, “The performance of officials should be evaluated every three years. After three rounds of evaluations, nine years later, the wise and the incompetent officials are differentiated. The wise ones are promoted, and the incompetent officials are dismissed.” Such an approach is used by Emperor Yao.
[10] The character xi 希 means to pursue.
[11] The character juan 蠲 means to remove or eliminate.

  In the first year of Zhongping,[n 6] the Yellow Turban Rebellion broke out. The Four Offices recommended Lu Zhi, and he was appointed as the General of the Household of the North (běi zhōngláng jiāng 北中郎將), Bearing the Staff of Authority (zhíjié 持節).[n 7] His deputy was Zong Yuan 宗員, Colonel Protecting the Wuhuan (hù Wūhuán xiàowèi 護烏桓校尉). They took command of the Five Regiments of the Northern Army, and summoned military forces from commanderies to suppress the Rebellion. In a series of battles, they defeated Zhang Jue 張角, and slew more than ten thousand rebels. Zhang Jue fled to guard Guangzong [city]. Lu Zhi built a siege-wall and dug a moat around the city. He ordered scaling ladders to be built, getting himself ready for a final attack. The Emperor dispatched a young eunuch named Zuo Feng 左豐 to visit the army and observe the conditions of the rebels. Someone recommended Lu Zhi to bribe Zuo Feng, but Lu Zhi refused. When Zuo Feng returned, he told the Emperor,

It is easy to destroy the rebels in Guangzong, but General Lu stays firmly inside his defenses and lets his soldiers rest. It’s as if he is merely awaiting Heaven to slay the rebels for him.

  The Emperor was furious, he ordered people to arrest Lu Zhi and put him in a cage cart.[n 8] Lu Zhi’s penalty was death commmuted by one degree. When the General of Chariots and Cavalry (jūjì jiāngjūn 車騎將軍) Huangfu Song 皇甫嵩 had suppressed Yellow Turban Rebellion, he spoke highly of Lu Zhi’s military strategies and tactics, which Song himself had applied to achieve success. In that year, Lu Zhi was reinstated as Master of Writing.

  After the demise of the Emperor,[n 9] General-in-Chief He Jin 何進 plotted to wipe out the eunuchs and summoned Dong Zhuo 董卓, Governor of Bing province, to the capital to coerce the Empress Dowager [He 何]. Lu Zhi knew that Dong Zhuo was vicious and hard to be controlled and that there would definitely be severe consequences. He tried hard to stop the General-in-Chief, but He Jin did not accept his advice. When Dong Zhuo arrived in the capital, he indeed treated the Court domineeringly. He convened all the officials at the Court, and discussed his plan to change the Emperor. Terrified, all the officials were silent. Only Lu Zhi protested. Dong Zhuo ordered the adjournment of the meeting, and desired to have Lu Zhi killed. More on this can be found in the biography of Dong Zhuo.[n 10] Lu Zhi was a good friend to Cai Yong. In the past, when Cai was exiled to the north, Lu Zhi was the only official who submitted a memorial to the throne to vindicate him. At that time, Cai Yong was trusted by Dong Zhuo, so Cai visited Dong Zhuo to vindicate Lu Zhi. Consultant Peng Bo admonished Dong Zhuo, “Lu Zhi is a prominent scholar respected by many people. If you have him killed, the people would be terrified.” Dong Zhuo gave up the idea, and stripped him of his official posts.

  Lu Zhi begged to return home due to his old age and illness. Fearing that he might not survive, he took an unusual path to exit the capital via the path of Huanyuan.[1] Dong Zuo indeed sent some men to chase him. When the men arrived at Huai, they found it was impossible to catch him. Lu Zhi made himself a hermit at Shanggu, and he never socialized with people outside. Yuan Shao 袁紹, Governor of Ji, asked him to serve as military advisor. In the third year of Chuping, Lu Zhi died. When dying, he told his son to arrange a thrifty burial in the soil without using a coffin. He asked his son to shroud his body with thin satin. He had six works, including inscriptions for stele, elegies, and memorials.

[1] The character 詭 gui means 诈 zha, deception. The path of Huanyuan is located in the present-day southeast of Goushi county, Luozhou.

  During the Jian’an Years,[n 11] Cao Cao 曹操 started an expedition north against Liucheng. He passed by Zhuo commandery,[1] and told the local Grand Administrator, “The late General of the Household of the North Lu Zhi is a man of nationwide prominence. He is also an academic master, a role model for the intellectuals, and a backbone statesman for the country. In the past, when King Wu of Zhou entered Yin, he granted noble titles to the neighbors of Shang Rong. When Zichan died in the State of Zheng, Confucius shed tears.[2] I, the solitary, now has arrived in this place. I shall praise him for his legacy. According to the Spring and Autumn Annals, the descendants of the wise deserve special respect.[3] Cao immediately sent an assistant to sweep clean Lu Zhi’s grave,[4] console his children and grandchildren, and had a ritual of sacrificial offering in memory of his virtues.[5] Lu Yu 盧毓, son of Lu Zhi, also enjoyed a nice reputation.[6]

[1] The Book of Wei [from Records of the Three Kingdoms] says, “In the 12th year of Jian’an, Cao Cao led an expedition northward against Wuhuan. Cao passed by Xianbei, attacked Liucheng, and climbed Bailang Mountain.”
[2] Zuo zhuan says, “When Confucius heard of the demise of Zichan, he shed tears and said, ‘He is the heir of the ancient sages’.”
[3] The Biography of Gongyang (Gōngyáng zhuán 公羊傳) says, “When a gentleman praises good deeds, the influence is to last long. When he condemns evil, the influence is to last short. When he condemns evil, his comdemnation is limited to condemned himself. When he praises goodness of someone, his action is to influence their descendants. That’s why a gentleman would avoid condemning others.”
[4] The character 亟 ji is the same as 急 ji, meaning immediately.
[5] The character 醊 zhui, a sacrificial offering of liquor poured into the ground.
[6] The Book of Wei says, “Lu Yu, style name Zijia 子家, was orphaned when he was ten. He was known for his academic talent and virtues. He served as Palace Attendant and Minister of Official Personnel Affairs for the Wei dynasty. When the Court selected Household Consultants, the Emperor issued an edict, ‘Whether the State recruites the proper official candidates, it depends on Lu. Concerning official recommendation, a nice reputation is not the reason for someone to be selected. Reputation resembles a pancake drawn on the ground, it is not edible.’ Lu Yu responded, ‘Reputation is not enough to gain extraordinary talents, but it helps to gain people with ordinary talents. People of ordinary talents bear awe for the discipline and admires goodness, and then they can become prominent.’”

Conclusion [to HHS 64][]

  Conclusion: Wind and frost differentiate the properties of herbs and trees.[1] Chaos and dangers reveal the virtues of loyalty and goodness.[2] And Lord Lu’s heart can be known by the people. When a hornet flies upon one’s chest, and a thunder cracks at one’s year, even people such as Meng Ben, Xia Yu, Jing Ke and Zhuan Zhu[3] would not remain composed and decisive.[4] Faced with sharp sabers, Lu Zhi chased the Emperor along the Yellow River.[5] Undaunted by dagger-axes and violence, he never considered his life as a priority. As a man of noble character, he remained faithful and unwavering for his loyalty and righteousness regardless of hardships and sufferings.[6]

[1] Analects says, “When the year becomes cold, then we know how the pine and the cypress are the last to lose their leaves.”
[2] Laozi 老子 said, “There are loyal officials when the State is in chaos.”
[3] Meng Ben 孟賁 is a hero with great strength. Xia Yu 夏育 is a hero with great valor. Both men were natives of Wei. The character 荆 jing refers to Jing Ke 荆轲. The character 諸 zhu refers to Zhuan Zhu 專諸.
[4] The character 冘 yin describes the demeanor of someone walking. It means someone could not remain composed, so that it is easy for someone to lose control.
[5] More on this is found in the biography of He Jin.[n 12] According to Du Yu’s note to Zuo zhuan, “The character 戕 qiang means violence by soldiers.”
[6] Confucius says, “The superior man does not, even for the space of a single meal, act contrary to the virtue of benevolence. In moments of haste, he cleaves to it. In seasons of danger, he cleaves to it.” Ma Rong wrote in his note, “The characters 造次 zaoci mean the state of haste. The characters 颠沛 dianpei mean dangers of falling. Even in haste and dangers, the superior man does not act contrary to the principles of benevolence.”

See also[]


  1. GJCM notes: 190 cm, or eight feet and two inches.
  2. GJCM notes: Dan is Ji Dan 姬旦, the Duke of Zhou 周公. Shi is Ji Shi 姬奭, the Duke Kang of Shao 召康公. Both were brothers of King Wu, the founder of the Zhou dynasty (c. 1046 BC–256 BC).
  3. GJCM notes: 168-171.
  4. GJCM notes: the year 175.
  5. GJCM notes: the year 178.
  6. GJCM notes: the first year of the reign era Zhongping is the year 184 AD in the west.
  7. The Staff of Authority gave the bearer plenipotentiary powers to act on behalf of the emperor, taking his own initiative and reporting only afterwards. It was made of bamboo, about 185cm long and had three yaks’ tails fastened to the top as tassels.[1]
  8. GJCM notes: the image in the infobox at the top of this page is a depiction of this scene.
  9. GJCM notes: Emperor Ling died on 13 May 189.
  10. GJCM notes: referring to Dong Zhuo’s official biography in History of the Later Han, which can be found in chapter 72.
  11. GJCM notes: the reign years Jian’an started in 196 and ended in 219.
  12. GJCM notes: the biography of He Jin is in History of the Later Han chapter chapter 69.


  1. de Crespigny, Emperor Huan and Emperor Ling, Zhongping 1