Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguo zhi 三國志) is regarded as the official history of the period of the Three Kingdoms covering the years 184 – 280 AD. Compiled by Chen Shou 陳壽 who used various historical texts as carefully considered sources. Chen’s work resulted in a collection of biographies spread over three shū 書 (‘histories’ or ‘books’) and sixty-five juǎn 卷 (‘scrolls’, ‘fascicles’ or ‘chapters’). One book per dynasty; one for Wei, a second for Shu-Han and a third for Wu.
During the fifth century the work was further annotated by Pei Songzhi 裴松之, making the work three times longer than the original. Pei Songzhi's additions include some topics of debate, such as Zhuge Liang's War of Pacification in Nanzhong.
Origin and Structure
The author/compiler of the Records of the Three Kingdoms, Chen Shou, was from Anhan county in Baxi commandery of the Shu-Han empire. In the year 263 AD Shu-Han was conquered by Wei. In 265 AD Wei was abolished by Sima Yan, who founded Jin.
Chen Shou was born in the year 233 AD and thus spent the first thirty years of his life in Shu-Han, then two years in Wei before it was abolished to create Jin in 265 AD where Chen Shou would live his final 32 years.
In his youth Chen Shou studied with another historian from Baxi commandery, Qiao Zhou, and learned the Shang shu 尚書 [Hallowed Documents] and the three commentaries to the Spring and Autumn Annals. He especially concentrated on The Records of the Grand Historian (Shǐjì 史記) and the History of Han (Hàn shū 漢書). Later, Chen Shou became an official in Shu-Han and held various titles.
When Jin was founded Chen Shou did not immediately take office, but after some time was recommended as filially and incorrupt by the powerful Zhang Hua. Later, the Inspector of the Palace Writers Xun Xu and the Prefect of the Palace Writers He Jiao enlisted him to edit the works of the Shu-Han statesman Zhuge Liang, which resulted in the Zhuge Liang ji 諸葛亮集 [Collected Works of Zhuge Liang].
When Wu was conquered by Jin in 280 AD Chen Shou began work on the Records of the Three Kingdoms. It is not known when Chen completed the manuscrupt for Records of the Three Kingdoms. The part about Shu-Han could've been finished even before the fall of Shu-Han. The part about Wu was likely not started on before Jin's conquest of Wu.
Pei Songzhi's Annotations
In the fifth century the work was further annotated by Pei Songzhi making the work three times as long as the original. After completing the annotations on Sanguo zhi, the work became the official history of the Three Kingdoms period, under the title Sānguó zhì zhù 三國志注 "Records of the Three Kingdoms Annotated".
- Main article: List of cited texts in Records of the Three Kingdoms
A selection of texts Pei Songzhi cited from.
As mentioned above the work is divided into three volumes, or 'books' (shū 書); the Book of Wei (Wèi shū 魏書), the Book of Shu (Shǔ shū 蜀書) and the Book of Wu (Wú shū 吳書). People of the preceeding Han dynasty (such as He Jin, Huangfu Song) and the succeeding Jin dynasty (such as Sima Yi, Du Yu) are subject in the History of the Later Han and the History of Jin and thus not mentioned in this work.
Book of Wei (Wèi shū 魏書)
|1||武帝紀||Annals of Emperor Wu|
|2||文帝紀||Annals of Emperor Wen|
|3||明帝紀||Annals of Emperor Ming|
|4||三少帝紀||Annals of the three young emperors|
|5||后妃傳||Biographies of empresses and concubines|
|6||董二袁劉傳||Biographies of Dong, the two Yuans, Liu|
|7||呂布臧洪傳||Biographies of Lü Bu, Zang Hong|
|8||二公孫陶四張傳||Biographies of the two Gongsuns, Tao, the four Zhangs|
|9||諸夏侯曹傳||Biographies of the Xiahous and Caos|
|10||荀彧荀攸賈詡傳||Biographies of Xun Yu, Xun You, Jia Xu|
|11||袁張涼國田王邴管傳||Biographies of Yuan, Zhang, Liang, Guo, Tian, Wang, Bing, Guan|
|12||崔毛徐何邢司馬傳||Biographies of Cui, Mao, Xu, He, Xing, Sima|
|13||鍾繇華歆王朗傳||Biographies of Zhong Yao, Hua Xin, Wang Lang|
|14||程郭董劉蔣劉傳||Biographies of Cheng, Dong, Guo, Liu, Jiang, Liu|
|15||劉司馬梁張溫賈傳||Biographies of Liu, Sima, Liang, Zhang, Wen, Jia|
|16||任蘇杜鄭倉傳||Biographies of Ren, Su, Du, Zheng, Cang|
|17||張樂于張徐傳||Biographies of Zhang, Yue, Yu, Zhang, Xu|
|18||二李臧文呂許典二龐閻傳||Biographies of the two Lis, Zang, Wen, Lü, Xu, Dian, the two Pangs, Yan|
|19||任城陳蕭王傳||Biographies of the princes of Rencheng, Chen, Xiao|
|20||武文世王公傳||Biographies of nobles in Emperors Wu and Wen's time|
|21||王衛二劉傳||Biographies of Wang, Wei, the two Lius|
|22||桓二陳徐衛盧傳||Biographies of Huan, the two Chens, Xu, Wei, Lu|
|23||和常楊杜趙裴傳||Biographies of He, Chang, Yang, Du, Zhao, Pei|
|24||韓崔高孫王傳||Biographies of Han, Cui, Gao, Sun, Wang|
|25||辛毗楊阜高堂隆傳||Biographies of Xin Pi, Yang Fu, Gaotang Long|
|26||滿田牽郭傳||Biographies of Man, Tian, Qian, Guo|
|27||徐胡二王傳||Biographies of Xu, Hu, the two Wangs|
|28||王毌丘諸葛鄧鍾傳||Biographies of Wang, Guanqiu, Zhuge, Deng, Zhong|
|29||方技傳||Biographies of fangshis and artisans|
|30||烏丸鮮卑東夷傳||Biographies of the Wuhuan, Xianbi, Dongyi|
Book of Shu (Shǔ shū 蜀書)
|31||劉二牧傳||Biographies of the two Governor Lius|
|32||先主傳||Biography of the Former Lord|
|33||後主傳||Biography of the Later Lord|
|34||二主妃子傳||Biographies of concubines and sons of the two Lords|
|35||諸葛亮傳||Biography of Zhuge Liang|
|36||關張馬黃趙傳||Biographies of Guan, Zhang, Ma, Huang, Zhao|
|37||龐統法正傳||Biographies of Pang Tong, Fa Zheng|
|38||許麋孫簡伊秦傳||Biographies of Xu, Mi, Sun, Jian, Yi, Qin|
|39||董劉馬陳董呂傳||Biographies of Dong, Liu, Ma, Chen, Dong, Lü|
|40||劉彭廖李劉魏楊傳||Biographies of Liu, Peng, Liao, Li, Liu, Wei, Yang|
|41||霍王向張楊費傳||Biographies of Huo, Wang, Xiang, Zhang, Yang, Fei|
|42||杜周杜許孟來尹李譙郤傳||Biographies of Du, Zhou, Du, Xu, Meng, Lai, Yin, Li, Qiao, Xi|
|43||黃李呂馬王張傳||Biographies of Huang, Li, Lü, Ma, Wang, Zhang|
|44||蔣琬費禕姜維傳||Biographies of Jiang Wan, Fei Yi, Jiang Wei|
|45||鄧張宗楊傳||Biographies of Deng, Zhang, Zong, Yang|
Book of Wu (Wú shū 吳書)
|46||孫破虜討逆傳||Biographies of Sun Who Defeats Barbarians, and Sun Who Attacks Rebels|
|47||吳主傳||Biography of the Lord of Wu|
|48||三嗣主傳||Biographies of the three heirs|
|49||劉繇太史慈士燮傳||Biographies of Liu Yao, Taishi Ci, Shi Xie|
|50||妃嬪傳||Biographies of concubines and ladies|
|51||宗室傳||Biographies of nobles|
|52||張顧諸葛步傳||Biographies of Zhang, Gu, Zhuge, Bu|
|53||張嚴程闞薛傳||Biographies of Zhang, Yan, Cheng, Kan, Xue|
|54||周瑜魯肅呂蒙傳||Biographies of Zhou Yu, Lu Su, and Lü Meng|
|55||程黃韓蔣周陳董甘淩徐潘丁傳||Cheng, Huang, Han, Jiang, Zhou, Chen, Dong, Gan, Ling, Xu, Pan, Ding|
|56||朱治朱然呂範朱桓傳||Biographies of Zhu Zhi, Zhu Ran, Lü Fan, Zhu Huan|
|57||虞陸張駱陸吾朱傳||Biographies of Yu, Lu, Zhang, Luo, Lu, Wu, Zhu|
|58||陸遜傳||Biography of Lu Xun|
|59||吳主五子傳||Biographies of the five sons of the Lord of Wu|
|60||賀全呂周鍾離傳||Biographies of He, Quan, Lü, Zhou, Zhongli|
|61||潘濬陸凱傳||Biographies of Pan Jun and Lu Kai|
|62||是儀胡綜傳||Biographies of Shi Yi Hu Zong|
|63||吳範劉惇趙達傳||Biographies of Wu Fan, Liu Dun, Zhao Da|
|64||諸葛滕二孫濮陽傳||Biographies of Zhuge, Teng, the two Suns, Puyang|
|65||王樓賀韋華傳||Biographies of Wang, Lou, He, Wei, Hua|
- History of the Later Han
- History of Jin
- Huayang guo zhi
- Zizhi tongjian
- List of cited texts in Records of the Three Kingdoms
- Cutter & Crowell, Empresses & Consorts, page 63
- Chen Shou 陳壽 (233–297). Sanguo zhi 三國志 “Records of the Three Kingdoms”, with official commentary compiled by Pei Songzhi 裴松之 (372-451).
- Cutter, Robert Joe and William Gordon Crowell. Empresses and Consorts - Selections from Chen Shou's Records of the Three States with Pei Songzhi's Commentary. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 1999.
- de Crespigny, Rafe. Generals of the South: the foundation and early history of the Three Kingdoms state of Wu. Canberra: The Australian National University, 1990.
- Fang Xuanling 房玄齡 (578-648). Jin shu 晉書 “History of Jin”. Beijing: Zhonghua shuju, 1974.