This is a discussion on Chinese Generals of Antiquity within the Military History forums, part of the China Defense & Military category; The West has more well known generals such as Hannibal, Julius Ceasar, Scipio Africanus, and Alexander the Great. China's general's ...
The West has more well known generals such as Hannibal, Julius Ceasar, Scipio Africanus, and Alexander the Great. China's general's are less well known in the west. This thread is to them...
Please post, limit it to antiquity (Pre-1000 AD)
Zhuge Liang. (181-234 AD)
See his critique of the Art of war.
sun bin, A general during the Spring Autum period
Lian Po, A general from the Warring State era
Meng Tian, A general who served under Qin shi huang
xiang yu, Rebel general who overthrew Qin dynasty
han xin, general under liu bang, the founder of Han Dynasty
There are also a bunch of people in the romance of three kingdom, but i dont know how much of it are actually true.
qin qiong, the famous general under Li shiming
chen yao jin, also served under Li shiming
An lushan, a rebel during the Reign of Tang Minghuang
Guo zi yi and li guang bi, Tang generals who suppressed the An lushang rebellion
The yang family of the Song Dynasty are very famous military family, Mu guiying was their daughter-in-law and was one of the most famous female military figure in China.
i can only think of these off the top of my head.
Last edited by kunmingren; 11-21-2006 at 10:04 PM.
I'm surpised that noone has mentioned famous Yue Fei!
http://www.ineedhotel.com/hangzhou/t...ht/sights.htmlThe Mausoleum of General Yue Fei is one of Hangzhou's most popular attractions with Chinese visitors, perhaps due to the feelings of patriotism that it stirs in many people.
Yue Fei was a military hero in the 12th Century during the Song Dynasty, and the founder of the martial art of Xingyiquan (body-mind-fist). Although Yue Fei was successful in keeping the invaders out of China, he was betrayed by a court official, Qin Hui and wrongly executed. In 1163 his reputation was recovered and his body dug up and reburied at this Mausoleum.
It is quite an experience visiting here as the Chinese really despise Qin Hui, and statues of the traitor, his wife and two accomplices kneeling are spat at by passers-by!
Last edited by BLUEJACKET; 01-12-2007 at 09:04 PM. Reason: corr.
great work by him to put up all effort to defeat the qing after so many corruptions and collution by officials
bluejacket, i would careful when talking about considering generals from the three kingdoms period, they are famous mainly because of the epic novel written about them, but how much of it is trueand how much of it is fiction? I think the Romance of Three Kingdom have clouded historical facts.
I guess we'll have to look at all periods, not just pre-1000AD! Here is one-
How about the admirals and pirates? There is already a tread about Zheng He, but there were others! For starters:
And we may also include rebel leaders: Bak Mei- according to one legend, he
.. trained an anti-Imperial attack force but following capture of the force by the Imperials, was forced to teach and lead 50,000 Imperial troops in the second destruction of the Shaolin Temple at Henan to prevent those captured with him from being tortured and killed. There, Bak Mei slew the "invincible" Shaolin leader, Chi Thien Su, in single combat by breaking his neck. He claimed he did this to prevent the massacre of the monks in the temple by the troops who followed him. ..
Bak Mei was a kungfu genius. He had many specialties, and was best known for his "tongzigong" or the "Art of Being Childlike", enabling him to be youthful even at old age, despite his white hair and long white bead. He was also expert in "mianhuagong" or "Cotton Art", which included "Cotton Palm" and "Cotton Belly". His favorite style was the Dragon, and he was extremely skilful at the phoenix-eye fist. striking the opponent's vital points.
Last edited by BLUEJACKET; 01-16-2007 at 07:49 PM. Reason: corr.
I think the most famous Chinese general is Sun Tze known to the west, yeah he is famous for his book but not many know he is a good general who was in wars actually.
And I think many in the west misread his book as well, or just read it from the surface. Sun Tze wrote down the principles of the war but his real intention was promoting anti-war idea. He couldn't speak it openly but he knew his readers would be those kings and generals, so he always states war is a defensive affair, and not waging unnecessary warfares.
Last year Hu sent the Art of War to Bush, not sure if Bush understands it.
Zhuge Liang, Lu Bu, Cao Cao, Cao Pi, Liu Biu, Zhang Fei, Ma Chao, Guan Yu, Zhao Yun, Sima Quan, Sun Quan, Sun Ce, Guan Ping, Gan Ning, etc,. These are all famous not just from the Romance of The Three Kingdoms, because of Koei's video games made around the story, ROTK whch has 11 editions already and Dynasty Warriors which has 5 editions already. Not to mention new massive multiplayer online versions for this year. Thus these have a modern following among game players, especially among Japanese, who would not know any other Chinese general but somehow all these guys have some mythical status. Example: there is a ridiculous heavily fan service anime called Ikki Tousen (US: Battle Vixens), where students from warring schools somehow manage to acquire sacred magatama, or jewels which contains the powers and spirits of the legendary warriors from the Three Kingdoms. The lead heroine appears to have the spirit of Sun Ce.
Lu Bu has a particularly special place among fans of the Koei series, and even gets a crossover into the Japanese feudal period in one of the Samurai Warrior games. Literature describes Lu Bu not being that good a general for being tempestious, but as a warrior he was legendary, taking on Guan Yu, Zhang Fei and Lui Bui to a stand still in the Battle of Hu Lao pass. He is traditionally portrayed with these two long feathers coming out from his headress, and this also gives him his signature appearance in the games. He is alluded in various anime under the Japanese name Ryofu.
But for all the generals in the 3 Kingdoms, Guan Yu is the one worshipped in Buddist temples as a protector and saint. He is the one often portrayed in Chinese buddist and taoist temples as a fearsome bearded warrior with dark red skin wearing a green robe and holding a halberd and this is the way he is also portrayed in Chinese opera. Guan Yu's unique status as a saint and deity sets him apart from all the Chinese generals. He is especially worshipped in Hong Kong, Taiwan and among overseas Chinese in South East Asia.
His quintessial image, that fearsome red skinned man with beard, armor with green robes and a swinging halberd, is alluded into various games, movies, and animes.
For this reason, Guan Yu is most unique in his place in modern Asian folklore and mythos, from history to religion and to modern Asian pop culture.
Because Romance of the Three Kingdoms was published in the Ming Dynasty, the characters were all illustrated with Ming Dynasty armor and weapons. This continued further when such is portrayed in paintings, temple gods, Chinese opera and even in modern movie, manga/manhwa and video games.
John Woo's new movie on the Battle of Chibi will try to portray the Three Kingdom characters in more of a historic light, and therefore try to show armor and weapons in a more historic fashion, rather than cramming everything from Qing to Qin Dynasty into some kind of "universal" ancient China conveniently packaged for media consumption.
Or maybe he does...
Hey I was wondering, has any foreign leader been invited to watch 京剧 (beijing opera) with a Chinese leader? When Japanese occupied beijing they picked up a taste for it. They were always stories about love, war, and loss.
Last edited by goldenpanda; 05-17-2007 at 10:13 PM.
Beijing opera is a part of Chinese culture and identity. The Japanese occupiers might've gotten a taste for it, but it sure didn't make its way to Japan.
Even back in the Meiji era, Japanese academies had Classical Chinese departments devoted to the studies of Chinese classics, including Sonshi (Sun Tze in Japanese). There were many editions of Sonshi, written at that time until today.
Today, Art of War editions are bought by trendy corporate warriors around the world looking to gain some advantage over one another.