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Guan Yu
Guan Yu
(died January or February 220),[a] courtesy name Yunchang, was a general serving under the warlord Liu Bei
Liu Bei
in the late Eastern Han dynasty. He played a significant role in the events that led to the end of the dynasty and the establishment of the state of Shu Han
Shu Han
– founded by Liu Bei
Liu Bei
– in the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
period. After Liu Bei gained control of Yi Province in 214, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
remained in Jing Province to govern and defend the area for about seven years. In 219, while he was away fighting Cao Cao's forces at the Battle of Fancheng, Liu Bei's ally Sun Quan
Sun Quan
broke the Sun–Liu alliance and sent his general Lü Meng
Lü Meng
to invade and conquer Liu Bei's territories in Jing Province in a stealth operation. By the time Guan Yu
Guan Yu
found out about the loss of Jing Province
Jing Province
after his defeat at Fancheng, it was too late. He was subsequently captured in an ambush by Sun Quan's forces and executed.[2] As one of the best known Chinese historical figures throughout East Asia, Guan Yu's true life stories have largely given way to fictionalised ones, most of which are found in the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
or passed down the generations, in which his deeds and moral qualities have been lionised. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is respected as an epitome of loyalty and righteousness. He is portrayed as having a red face. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was deified as early as the Sui dynasty
Sui dynasty
and is still worshipped by many Chinese people today in mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and among many overseas Chinese communities. In religious devotion he is reverentially called the " Divus
Divus
Guan" (Guān Dì) or "Lord Guan" (Guān Gōng). He is a deity worshipped in Chinese folk religion, popular Confucianism, Taoism, and Chinese Buddhism, and small shrines to him are almost ubiquitous in traditional Chinese shops and restaurants. His hometown Yuncheng
Yuncheng
has also named its airport after him.

Contents

1 Historical sources 2 Physical appearance 3 Early life and career 4 Short service under Cao Cao

4.1 Background 4.2 Battle of Boma 4.3 Leaving Cao Cao

5 Returning to Liu Bei 6 Battle of Red Cliffs
Battle of Red Cliffs
and aftermath 7 Guarding Jing Province

7.1 Sun-Liu territorial dispute

8 Battle of Fancheng

8.1 Belittling Sun Quan 8.2 Encounter with Xu Huang

9 Losing Jing Province

9.1 Dubious account from the Dianlue

10 Death

10.1 Alternate account from the Shu Ji 10.2 Posthumous honours

11 Anecdotes

11.1 Request to take Qin Yilu's wife 11.2 Advice to Liu Bei 11.3 Asking Zhuge Liang
Zhuge Liang
about Ma Chao 11.4 Arm injury

12 Family 13 Appraisal 14 In Romance of the Three Kingdoms 15 Worship of Guan Yu

15.1 In Chinese religion 15.2 In Taoism 15.3 In Buddhism

16 In popular culture

16.1 Chinese opera 16.2 Film and television 16.3 Manga 16.4 Games

17 See also 18 Notes 19 References

19.1 Bibliography

20 External links

Historical sources[edit] The authoritative historical source on Guan Yu's life is the Records of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
(Sanguozhi) written by Chen Shou
Chen Shou
in the third century. During the fifth century, Pei Songzhi annotated the Sanguozhi by incorporating information from other sources to Chen Shou's original work and adding his personal comments. Some alternative texts used in the annotations to Guan Yu's biography include: Shu Ji (Records of Shu), by Wang Yin; Wei Shu (Book of Wei), by Wang Chen, Xun Yi and Ruan Ji; Jiang Biao Zhuan, by Yu Pu; Fu Zi, by Fu Xuan; Dianlue, by Yu Huan; Wu Li (History of Wu), by Hu Chong; and Chronicles of Huayang, by Chang Qu. Physical appearance[edit] No descriptions of Guan Yu's physical appearance exist in historical records, but his beard was mentioned in the Sanguozhi. Traditionally, he is portrayed as a red-faced warrior with a long lush beard. The idea of his red face may have derived from a description of him in the first chapter of the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, where the following passage appears: quote"Xuande took a look at the man, who stood at a height of nine chi,[f] Alternatively, the idea of his red face could have been borrowed from opera representation, where red faces depict loyalty and righteousness.[citation needed] In illustrations of Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is traditionally depicted wearing a green robe over his body armour. Supposedly, Guan Yu's weapon was a guan dao named Green Dragon Crescent Blade, which resembled a European glaive and was said to weigh 82 catties (about 18.25 kg or 40 lbs). A wooden replica can be found today in the Emperor
Emperor
Guan Temple in Xiezhou County, Shanxi. Early life and career[edit]

Liu Bei
Liu Bei
(left), Guan Yu
Guan Yu
(back), and Zhang Fei
Zhang Fei
(right) in an illustration by Japanese painter Sakurai Sekkan (1715–90)

Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was from Xie County (解縣), Hedong Commandery (河東郡), which is present-day Yuncheng, Shanxi. His original courtesy name was Changsheng (長生).[Sanguozhi 1] He was very interested in the ancient history book Zuo zhuan
Zuo zhuan
and could fluently recite lines from it.[Sanguozhi zhu 1] He fled from his hometown after committing a serious offence and went to Zhuo Commandery (涿郡; present-day Zhuozhou, Hebei). When the Yellow Turban Rebellion
Yellow Turban Rebellion
broke out in the 180s, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and Zhang Fei
Zhang Fei
joined a volunteer militia formed by Liu Bei, and they assisted a colonel Zou Jing in suppressing the revolt.[Sanguozhi 2][Sanguozhi others 1] When Liu Bei
Liu Bei
was appointed as the Chancellor (相) of Pingyuan State (平原國; around present-day Dezhou, Shandong), Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and Zhang Fei were appointed as Majors of Separate Command (别部司马), each commanding detachments of soldiers under Liu Bei. The three of them were as close as brothers and they shared the same room. Zhang Fei
Zhang Fei
and Guan Yu
Guan Yu
also stood guard beside Liu Bei
Liu Bei
when he sat down at meetings. They followed him on his exploits and protected him from danger.[Sanguozhi 3] Short service under Cao Cao[edit] Background[edit] Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and his men followed Cao Cao
Cao Cao
back to the imperial capital Xu (許; present-day Xuchang, Henan) after their victory over Lü Bu
Lü Bu
at the Battle of Xiapi in 198. About a year later, in 199, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and his followers escaped from Xu on the pretext of helping Cao Cao
Cao Cao
lead an army to attack Yuan Shu. Liu Bei
Liu Bei
went to Xu Province, killed the provincial inspector Che Zhou (車冑), and seized control of the province. He moved to Xiaopei (小沛; present-day Pei County, Jiangsu) and left Guan Yu
Guan Yu
in charge of the provincial capital Xiapi (下邳; present-day Pizhou, Jiangsu).[Sanguozhi 4] [Sanguozhi others 2][Sanguozhi zhu 2] In 200, Cao Cao
Cao Cao
led his forces to attack Liu Bei, defeated him and retook Xu Province. Liu Bei
Liu Bei
fled to northern China and found refuge under Cao Cao's rival Yuan Shao, while Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was captured by Cao Cao's forces and brought back to Xu. Cao Cao
Cao Cao
treated Guan Yu respectfully and asked Emperor
Emperor
Xian to appoint Guan Yu
Guan Yu
as a Lieutenant-General (偏將軍).[Sanguozhi 5][Sanguozhi others 3] Battle of Boma[edit] Main article: Battle of Boma Later that year, Yuan Shao
Yuan Shao
sent his general Yan Liang
Yan Liang
to lead an army to attack Cao Cao's garrison at Boma (白馬; near present-day Hua County, Henan), which was defended by Liu Yan (劉延). Cao Cao
Cao Cao
sent Zhang Liao
Zhang Liao
and Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to lead the vanguard to engage the enemy. In the midst of battle, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
recognised Yan Liang's parasol so he charged towards Yan Liang, decapitated him and returned with his head. Yan Liang's men could not stop him. With Yan Liang's death, the siege on Boma was lifted. On Cao Cao's recommendation, Emperor
Emperor
Xian awarded Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the peerage of "Marquis[g] of Hanshou Village" (漢壽亭侯).[Sanguozhi 6] Leaving Cao Cao[edit] Although Cao Cao
Cao Cao
admired Guan Yu's character, he also sensed that Guan Yu had no intention of serving under him for long. He told Zhang Liao, "Why don't you make use of your friendship with Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to find out what he wants?" When Zhang Liao
Zhang Liao
asked him, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
replied, "I am aware that Lord Cao treats me very generously. However, I have also received many favours from General Liu and I have sworn to follow him until I die. I cannot break my oath. I will leave eventually, so maybe you can help me convey my message to Lord Cao." Zhang Liao
Zhang Liao
did so, and Cao Cao
Cao Cao
was even more impressed with Guan Yu.[Sanguozhi 7] The Fu Zi gave a slightly different account of this incident. It recorded that Zhang Liao
Zhang Liao
faced a dilemma of whether or not to convey Guan Yu's message to Cao Cao: if he did, Cao Cao
Cao Cao
might execute Guan Yu; if he did not, he would be failing in his service to Cao Cao. He sighed, "Lord Cao is my superior and he is like a father to me, while Guan Yu is like a brother to me." He eventually decided to tell Cao Cao. Cao Cao said, "A subject who serves his lord but doesn't forget his origins is truly a man of righteousness. When do you think he will leave?" Zhang Liao
Zhang Liao
replied, " Guan Yu
Guan Yu
has received favours from Your Excellency. He will most probably leave after he has repaid your kindness."[Sanguozhi zhu 3] After Guan Yu
Guan Yu
slew Yan Liang
Yan Liang
and lifted the siege on Boma, Cao Cao knew that he would leave soon so he gave Guan Yu
Guan Yu
greater rewards. Guan Yu sealed up all the gifts he received from Cao Cao, wrote a farewell letter, and headed towards Yuan Shao's territory to find Liu Bei. Cao Cao's subordinates wanted to pursue Guan Yu, but Cao Cao
Cao Cao
stopped them and said, "He's just doing his duty to his lord. There's no need to pursue him."[Sanguozhi 8] Pei Songzhi commented on this as follows: " Cao Cao
Cao Cao
admired Guan Yu's character even though he knew that Guan Yu
Guan Yu
would not remain under him. He did not send his men to pursue Guan Yu
Guan Yu
when Guan Yu
Guan Yu
left, so as to allow Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to fulfil his allegiance (to Liu Bei). If he was not as magnanimous as a great warlord should be, how would he allow this to happen? This was an example of Cao Cao's goodness."[Sanguozhi zhu 4] Returning to Liu Bei[edit]

A mural of Guan Yu's "Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles" (千里走單騎) in the Summer Palace, Beijing.

When Cao Cao
Cao Cao
and Yuan Shao
Yuan Shao
clashed at the Battle of Guandu
Battle of Guandu
in 200, Yuan sent Liu Bei
Liu Bei
to contact Liu Pi (劉辟), a Yellow Turban rebel chief in Runan (汝南; present-day Runan County, Henan), and assist Liu Pi in attacking the imperial capital Xu (許; present-day Xuchang, Henan) while Cao Cao
Cao Cao
was away at Guandu. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
reunited with Liu Bei around this time. Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and Liu Pi were defeated by Cao Cao's general Cao Ren, after which Liu Bei
Liu Bei
returned to Yuan Shao. Liu Bei secretly planned to leave Yuan Shao, so he pretended to persuade Yuan Shao to form an alliance with Liu Biao, the Governor of Jing Province. Yuan Shao
Yuan Shao
sent Liu Bei
Liu Bei
to contact another rebel leader, Gong Du (共都/龔都), in Runan, where they gathered a few thousand soldiers. Cao Cao
Cao Cao
turned back and attacked Runan after scoring a decisive victory over Yuan Shao
Yuan Shao
at Guandu, and he defeated Liu Bei
Liu Bei
in Runan. Liu Bei
Liu Bei
fled south and found shelter under Liu Biao, who put him in charge of Xinye (新野; present-day Xinye County, Henan) at the northern border of Jing Province. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
followed Liu Bei
Liu Bei
to Xinye.[Sanguozhi others 4][Sanguozhi 9] Battle of Red Cliffs
Battle of Red Cliffs
and aftermath[edit] See also: Battle of Red Cliffs
Battle of Red Cliffs
and Battle of Jiangling (208) Liu Biao
Liu Biao
died in 208 and was succeeded by his younger son, Liu Cong, who surrendered Jing Province
Jing Province
to Cao Cao
Cao Cao
when the latter started a campaign that year with the aim of wiping out opposing forces in southern China. Liu Bei
Liu Bei
evacuated Xinye together with his followers and they headed towards Xiakou (夏口; in present-day Wuhan, Hubei), which was guarded by Liu Biao's elder son Liu Qi and independent of Cao Cao's control. Along the journey, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
divided his party into two groups – one led by Guan Yu
Guan Yu
which would sail along the river towards Jiangling (江陵; in present-day Jingzhou, Hubei); another led by Liu Bei
Liu Bei
which would travel on land. Cao Cao
Cao Cao
sent 5,000 elite cavalry to pursue Liu Bei's group and they caught up with them at Changban (長坂; in present-day Dangyang, Hubei), where the Battle of Changban broke out. Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and his remaining followers managed to escape from Cao Cao's forces and reach Han Ford (漢津), where Guan Yu's group picked them up and they sailed to Xiakou together.[Sanguozhi others 5][Sanguozhi 10] In 208, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
allied with Sun Quan
Sun Quan
and they defeated Cao Cao
Cao Cao
at the decisive Battle of Red Cliffs. Cao Cao
Cao Cao
retreated north after his defeat and left Cao Ren
Cao Ren
behind to defend Jing Province. During the Battle of Jiangling, Guan Yu's mission was to block Cao Ren's supply lines via infiltration so he led a special force to attack Xiangyang, which was guarded by Cao Cao's general Yue Jin. Yue Jin defeated Guan Yu and Su Fei (蘇非) and drove them away.[Sanguozhi others 6] After seizing and pacifying the various commanderies in southern Jing Province, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
appointed Guan Yu
Guan Yu
as the Administrator (太守) of Xiangyang
Xiangyang
and General Who Defeats Bandits (盪寇將軍), and ordered him to station at the north of the Yangtze River.[Sanguozhi 11] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
later engaged Yue Jin and Wen Ping at Xunkou (尋口) and lost. Wen Ping attacked Guan Yu's equipage and supplies at Han Ford (漢津) and burnt his boats at Jingcheng (荊城).[Sanguozhi others 7] Guarding Jing Province[edit] Between 212 and 214, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
started a campaign to seize control of Yi Province (益州; covering present-day Sichuan
Sichuan
and Chongqing) from the provincial governor Liu Zhang. Most of Liu Bei's subordinates participated in the campaign, while Guan Yu
Guan Yu
remained behind to guard and oversee Liu Bei's territories in Jing Province.[Sanguozhi 12] Sun-Liu territorial dispute[edit] Main article: Sun–Liu territorial dispute During the mid 210s, a territorial dispute broke out between Liu Bei and Sun Quan
Sun Quan
in southern Jing Province. According to an earlier arrangement, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
"borrowed" southern Jing Province
Jing Province
from Sun Quan to serve as a temporary base; he would have to return the territories to Sun Quan
Sun Quan
once he found another base. After Liu Bei
Liu Bei
seized control of Yi Province, Sun Quan
Sun Quan
asked him to return three commanderies but Liu Bei
Liu Bei
refused. Sun Quan
Sun Quan
then sent his general Lü Meng
Lü Meng
to lead his forces to seize the three commanderies. In response, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
ordered Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to lead troops to stop Lü Meng.[Sanguozhi others 8] Gan Ning, one of Lü Meng's subordinates, managed to deter Guan Yu
Guan Yu
from crossing the shallows near Yiyang. The shallows were thus named 'Guan Yu's Shallows' (關羽瀨).[Sanguozhi others 9] Lu Su
Lu Su
(the overall commander of Sun Quan's forces in Jing Province) later invited Guan Yu to attend a meeting to settle the territorial dispute. Around 215, after Cao Cao
Cao Cao
seized control of Hanzhong
Hanzhong
Commandery, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
saw that as a strategic threat to his position in Yi Province so he decided to make peace with Sun Quan
Sun Quan
and agreed to divide southern Jing Province between his and Sun Quan's domains along the Xiang River. Both sides then withdrew their forces.[Sanguozhi others 10] Battle of Fancheng[edit] Main article: Battle of Fancheng

Guan Yu
Guan Yu
captures Pang De, as depicted in a Ming dynasty painting
Ming dynasty painting
by Shang Xi, c. 1430.

In 219, Liu Bei
Liu Bei
emerged victorious in the Hanzhong
Hanzhong
Campaign against Cao Cao, after which he declared himself "King of Hanzhong" (漢中王). He appointed Guan Yu
Guan Yu
as General of the Vanguard (前將軍) and bestowed upon him a ceremonial axe. In the same year, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
led his forces to attack Cao Ren
Cao Ren
at Fancheng (樊城; present-day Fancheng District, Xiangyang, Hubei) and besiege the fortress. Cao Cao
Cao Cao
sent Yu Jin to lead reinforcements to help Cao Ren. It was in autumn and there were heavy showers so the Han River overflowed. The flood destroyed Yu Jin's seven armies. Yu Jin surrendered to Guan Yu
Guan Yu
while his subordinate Pang De
Pang De
refused and was executed by Guan Yu. The bandits led by Liang Jia (梁郟) and Lu Hun (陸渾) received official seals from Guan Yu, so they submitted to him and became his followers. Guan Yu's fame spread throughout China.[Sanguozhi 13] The Shu Ji recorded that before Guan Yu
Guan Yu
embarked on the Fancheng campaign, he dreamt about a boar biting his foot. He told his son Guan Ping, "I am growing weaker this year. I might not even return alive."[Sanguozhi zhu 5] Belittling Sun Quan[edit] After Yu Jin's defeat, Cao Cao
Cao Cao
contemplated relocating the imperial capital from Xu (許; present-day Xuchang, Henan) further north into Hebei
Hebei
to avoid Guan Yu, but Sima Yi
Sima Yi
and Jiang Ji told him that Sun Quan would become restless when he heard of Guan Yu's victory. They suggested to Cao Cao
Cao Cao
to ally with Sun Quan
Sun Quan
and get him to help them hinder Guan Yu's advances; in return, Cao Cao
Cao Cao
would recognise the legitimacy of Sun Quan's claim over the territories in Jiangdong. In this way, the siege on Fancheng would automatically be lifted. Cao Cao heeded their suggestion. Previously, Sun Quan
Sun Quan
had sent a messenger to meet Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and propose a marriage between his son and Guan Yu's daughter. However, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
not only rejected the proposal, but also scolded and humiliated the messenger. Sun Quan
Sun Quan
was enraged.[Sanguozhi 14] Encounter with Xu Huang[edit] Cao Cao
Cao Cao
later sent Xu Huang
Xu Huang
to lead another army to reinforce Cao Ren at Fancheng. Xu Huang
Xu Huang
broke through Guan Yu's encirclement and routed Guan Yu's forces on the battlefield, thus lifting the siege on Fancheng.[Sanguozhi others 11] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
withdrew his forces after seeing that he could not capture Fancheng.[Sanguozhi 15] The Shu Ji recorded an incident about Xu Huang
Xu Huang
encountering Guan Yu
Guan Yu
on the battlefield. Xu Huang
Xu Huang
was previously a close friend of Guan Yu. They often chatted about other things apart from military affairs. When they met again at Fancheng, Xu Huang
Xu Huang
gave an order to his men: "Whoever takes Guan Yunchang's head will be rewarded with 1,000 jin of gold." A shocked Guan Yu
Guan Yu
asked Xu Huang, "Brother, what are you talking about?" Xu Huang
Xu Huang
replied, "This is an affair of the state."[Sanguozhi zhu 6] Losing Jing Province[edit] Main article: Lü Meng's invasion of Jing Province After Guan Yu
Guan Yu
defeated and captured Yu Jin at Fancheng, his army lacked food supplies so he seized grain from one of Sun Quan's granaries at Xiang Pass (湘關). By then, Sun Quan
Sun Quan
had secretly agreed to ally with Cao Cao
Cao Cao
and had sent his general Lü Meng
Lü Meng
and others to lead his forces to invade Jing Province
Jing Province
while he followed behind with reinforcements. At Xunyang (尋陽), Lü Meng
Lü Meng
ordered his troops to hide in vessels disguised as civilian and merchant ships and sail towards Jing Province. Along the way, Lü Meng
Lü Meng
employed infiltration tactics to disable the watchtowers set up by Guan Yu along the river, so Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was totally unaware of the invasion.[Sanguozhi others 12] When Guan Yu
Guan Yu
embarked on the Fancheng campaign, he left Mi Fang and Shi Ren behind to defend his key bases in Jing Province
Jing Province
– Nan Commandery (南郡; around present-day Jingzhou, Hubei) and Gong'an (公安; present-day Gong'an County, Hubei). Guan Yu
Guan Yu
had all along treated them with contempt. During the campaign, after Mi Fang and Shi Ren sent insufficient supplies to Guan Yu's army at the frontline, an annoyed Guan Yu
Guan Yu
said, "I will deal with them when I return." Mi Fang and Shi Ren felt uneasy about this. When Sun Quan
Sun Quan
invaded Jing Province, Lü Meng
Lü Meng
showed understanding towards Mi Fang and successfully induced him into surrendering while Yu Fan also persuaded Shi Ren to give up resistance. Liu Bei's territories in Jing Province fell under Sun Quan's control after the surrenders of Mi Fang and Shi Ren.[Sanguozhi 16] Dubious account from the Dianlue[edit] The Dianlue recorded:

When Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was besieging Fancheng, Sun Quan
Sun Quan
sent a messenger to Guan Yu to offer aid while secretly instructing the messenger to take his time to travel there. He then sent a registrar ahead to meet Guan Yu first. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was unhappy that Sun Quan's offer came late because he had already captured Yu Jin by then. He scolded the messenger, "You raccoon dogs dare to behave like this! If I can conquer Fancheng, what makes you think I can't destroy you?" Although Sun Quan
Sun Quan
felt insulted by Guan Yu's response, he still wrote a letter to Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and pretended to apologise and offer to allow Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to pass through his territory freely.[Sanguozhi zhu 7]

Pei Songzhi commented on the Dianlue account as follows:

Although Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and Sun Quan
Sun Quan
appeared to get along harmoniously, they were actually distrustful of each other. When Sun Quan
Sun Quan
later attacked Guan Yu, he dispatched his forces secretly, as mentioned in Lü Meng's biography: '[...] elite soldiers hid in vessels disguised as civilian and merchant ships.' Based on this reasoning, even if Guan Yu
Guan Yu
did not seek help from Sun Quan, the latter would not mention anything about granting Guan Yu
Guan Yu
free passage in his territory. If they genuinely wished to help each other, why would they conceal their movements from each other?[Sanguozhi zhu 8]

Death[edit] By the time Guan Yu
Guan Yu
retreated from Fancheng, Sun Quan's forces had occupied Jiangling (江陵; present-day Jiangling County, Hubei) and captured the families of Guan Yu's soldiers. Lü Meng
Lü Meng
ordered his troops to treat the civilians well and ensure that they were not harmed.[h] Most of Guan Yu's soldiers lost their fighting spirit and deserted and went back to Jing Province
Jing Province
to reunite with their families. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
knew that he had been isolated so he withdrew to Maicheng (麥城; present-day Maicheng Village, Lianghe Town, Dangyang, Hubei) and headed west to Zhang District (漳鄉), where his remaining men deserted him and surrendered to the enemy. Sun Quan
Sun Quan
sent Zhu Ran
Zhu Ran
and Pan Zhang to block Guan Yu's retreat route. Guan Yu, along with his son Guan Ping
Guan Ping
and subordinate Zhao Lei (趙累), were captured alive by Pan Zhang's deputy Ma Zhong (馬忠) in an ambush. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and Guan Ping
Guan Ping
were later executed by Sun Quan's forces in Linju (臨沮; present-day Nanzhang County, Hubei).[Sanguozhi 17][Sanguozhi others 13][Sanguozhi others 14] Alternate account from the Shu Ji[edit] The Shu Ji mentioned that Sun Quan
Sun Quan
initially wanted to keep Guan Yu alive in the hope of using Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to help him counter Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and Cao Cao. However, his followers advised him against doing so by saying, "A wolf shouldn't be kept as a pet as it'll bring harm to the keeper. Cao Cao made a mistake when he refused to kill Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and landed himself in deep trouble. He even had to consider relocating the imperial capital elsewhere. How can Guan Yu
Guan Yu
be allowed to live?" Sun Quan
Sun Quan
then ordered Guan Yu's execution.[Sanguozhi zhu 9] Pei Songzhi disputed this account as follows:

According to (Wei Zhao's) Book of Wu, when Sun Quan
Sun Quan
sent Pan Zhang to block Guan Yu's retreat route, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was executed after he was captured. Linju was about 200 to 300 li away from Jiangling, so how was it possible that Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was kept alive while Sun Quan
Sun Quan
and his subjects discussed whether to execute him or not? The claim that 'Sun Quan wanted to keep Guan Yu
Guan Yu
alive for the purpose of using him to counter Liu Bei
Liu Bei
and Cao Cao' does not make sense. It was probably meant to silence smart people.[Sanguozhi zhu 10]

Posthumous honours[edit] Sun Quan
Sun Quan
sent Guan Yu's head to Cao Cao, who arranged a noble's funeral for Guan Yu
Guan Yu
and had his head properly buried with full honours.[Sanguozhi zhu 11] In October or November 260, Liu Shan granted Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the posthumous title "Marquis Zhuangmou" (壯繆侯).[Sanguozhi 18][Sanguozhi others 15] According to posthumous naming rules in the Yi Zhou Shu, "Zhuangmou" was meant for a person who failed to live up to his reputation.[6] Anecdotes[edit] Request to take Qin Yilu's wife[edit] See also: Qin Yilu During the Battle of Xiapi in late 198, when the allied forces of Cao Cao and Liu Bei
Liu Bei
fought against Lü Bu, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
sought permission from Cao Cao
Cao Cao
to marry Qin Yilu's wife Lady Du (杜氏) after they won the battle. After Cao Cao
Cao Cao
agreed, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
still repeatedly reminded Cao Cao about his promise before the battle ended. After Lü Bu's defeat and death, Cao Cao
Cao Cao
was so curious about why Guan Yu
Guan Yu
wanted Lady Du so badly and he guessed that she must be very beautiful, so he had her brought to him. Cao Cao
Cao Cao
ultimately broke his promise as he took Lady Du as his concubine and adopted her son Qin Lang (whom she had with Qin Yilu).[Sanguozhi zhu 12][Sanguozhi zhu 13] Advice to Liu Bei[edit] The Shu Ji recorded an incident as follows:

When Liu Bei
Liu Bei
was in the imperial capital Xu, he once attended a hunting expedition together with Cao Cao, during which Guan Yu
Guan Yu
urged him to kill Cao Cao
Cao Cao
but he refused. Later, when Liu Bei
Liu Bei
reached Xiakou (after his defeat at the Battle of Changban), Guan Yu
Guan Yu
complained, "If you heeded my advice during the hunting expedition in Xu, we wouldn't end up in this troubling situation." Liu Bei
Liu Bei
replied, "I didn't do so then for the sake of the Empire. If Heaven still helps those who are righteous, it might be possible that this may turn out to be a blessing in disguise!"[Sanguozhi zhu 14]

Pei Songzhi commented on the Shu Ji account as follows:

When Liu Bei, Dong Cheng and others plotted against Cao Cao, their plan failed because it was leaked out. If he did not want to kill Cao Cao for the sake of the Empire, what did he mean when he said this? If Guan Yu
Guan Yu
did urge Liu Bei
Liu Bei
to kill Cao Cao
Cao Cao
during the hunting expedition and Liu Bei
Liu Bei
did not do so, it was probably because Cao Cao's close aides and relatives were present at the scene and they outnumbered him. Besides, there was a lack of careful planning so Liu Bei
Liu Bei
had to wait for another opportunity. Even if Liu Bei
Liu Bei
succeeded in killing Cao Cao, he would not have been able to escape alive, so Liu Bei
Liu Bei
did not heed Guan Yu's words. There was nothing to regret. The hunting expedition event happened in the past, so it was used to justify that Guan Yu
Guan Yu
had given Liu Bei
Liu Bei
"valued advice", which the latter ignored.[Sanguozhi zhu 15]

Asking Zhuge Liang
Zhuge Liang
about Ma Chao[edit] In 214, Ma Chao defected from Zhang Lu's side to Liu Bei's forces, and he assisted Liu Bei
Liu Bei
in pressuring Liu Zhang to surrender and yield Yi Province to Liu Bei. When Guan Yu
Guan Yu
received news that Ma Chao (whom he was unfamiliar with) had recently joined them, he wrote to Zhuge Liang in Yi Province and asked him who was comparable to Ma Chao. Zhuge Liang knew that Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was defending the border (so he should not displease Guan Yu). He replied: "Mengqi is proficient in both civil and military affairs. He is fierce and mighty, and a hero of his time. He is comparable to Qing Bu and Peng Yue. He can compete with Yide, but he is not as good as the peerless beard."[i][Sanguozhi 20] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was very pleased when he received Zhuge Liang's reply and he welcomed Ma Chao.[Sanguozhi 21] Arm injury[edit] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was once injured in the left arm by a stray arrow which pierced through his arm. Although the wound healed, he still experienced pain in the bone whenever there was a heavy downpour. A physician told him, "The arrowhead had poison on it and the poison had seeped into the bone. The way to get rid of this problem is to cut open your arm and scrape away the poison in your bone." Guan Yu
Guan Yu
then stretched out his arm and asked the physician to heal him. He then invited his subordinates to dine with him while the surgery was being performed. Blood flowed from his arm into a container below. Throughout the operation, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
feasted, consumed alcohol and chatted with his men as though nothing had happened.[Sanguozhi 22] Family[edit] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
had two known sons – Guan Ping
Guan Ping
and Guan Xing. Guan Xing inherited his father's title "Marquis of Hanshou Village" (漢壽亭侯) and served in the state of Shu during the Three Kingdoms period.[Sanguozhi 23] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
also had a daughter. Sun Quan once proposed a marriage between his son and Guan Yu's daughter, but Guan Yu
Guan Yu
rejected the proposal. Her name was not recorded in history, but she was known as "Guan Yinping" (關銀屏) or "Guan Feng" (關鳳) in folktales and Chinese opera. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
allegedly had a third son, Guan Suo, who is not mentioned in historical texts and appears only in folklore and the historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms. Guan Xing's son, Guan Tong (關統), married a princess (one of Liu Shan's daughters) and served as a General of the Household (中郎將) among the imperial guards. Guan Tong had no son when he died, so he was succeeded by his younger half-brother Guan Yi (關彝).[Sanguozhi 24] According to the Shu Ji, after the fall of Shu in 263, Pang Hui
Pang Hui
(Pang De's son) massacred Guan Yu's family and descendants to avenge his father, who was executed by Guan Yu
Guan Yu
after the Battle of Fancheng
Battle of Fancheng
in 219.[Sanguozhi zhu 16] In 1719, the Kangxi Emperor
Kangxi Emperor
of the Qing dynasty
Qing dynasty
awarded the hereditary title "Wujing Boshi" (五經博士; "Professor of the Five Classics") to Guan Yu's descendants living in Luoyang. The bearer of the title is entitled to an honorary position in the Hanlin Academy.[7][8] Appraisal[edit] Chen Shou, who wrote Guan Yu's biography in the Sanguozhi, commented on the latter as such: " Guan Yu
Guan Yu
[...] were referred to as mighty warriors capable of fighting thousands of enemies. They were like tigers among (Liu Bei's) subjects. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
[...] had the style of a guoshi[j] when he repaid Cao Cao's kindness [...] However, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was unrelenting and conceited, [...] and these shortcomings resulted in their downfalls. This was not something uncommon."[Sanguozhi 25] In Romance of the Three Kingdoms[edit]

Portrait of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
(behind) from a Qing dynasty
Qing dynasty
edition of Romance of the Three Kingdoms.

A 19th-century Japanese woodcut of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
by Utagawa Kuniyoshi. In this scene, he is being attended to by the physician Hua Tuo
Hua Tuo
while playing weiqi. See here for a large version of the full picture.

The 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms glorifies Guan Yu
Guan Yu
by portraying him as a righteous and loyal warrior. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is one of the most altered and aggrandised characters in the novel, which accounts for his popular image in Chinese society. See the following for some fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms involving Guan Yu:

Oath of the Peach Garden Battle of Sishui Pass Battle of Hulao Pass List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Guan Yu's three conditions List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Guan Yu slays Yan Liang
Yan Liang
and Wen Chou List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Guan Yu crosses five passes and slays six generals List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Guan Yu slays Cai Yang at Gucheng List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Guan Yu releases Cao Cao
Cao Cao
at Huarong Trail Sun–Liu territorial dispute#In Romance of the Three Kingdoms List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Hua Tuo heals Guan Yu's arm Lü Meng#In Romance of the Three Kingdoms List of fictitious stories in Romance of the Three Kingdoms#Events after Guan Yu's death

Worship of Guan Yu[edit]

Multi-story-high statue of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
at Jinguashi

Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was deified as early as the Sui dynasty
Sui dynasty
(581–618), and is still worshipped today among the Chinese people. He is variedly worshipped as an indigenous Chinese deity, a bodhisattva in Buddhist tradition and as a guardian deity in Taoism
Taoism
and many other religious bodies.[9] He is also held in high esteem in Confucianism. These roles are not necessarily contradictory or even distinguished within the Chinese religious system, which often merge multiple ancient philosophies and religions.[citation needed] In the Western world, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is sometimes called the Taoist God of War, probably because he is one of the most well-known military generals worshipped by the Chinese people. This is a misconception of his role, as, unlike the Greco-Roman deity Mars or the Norse god Týr, Guan Yu, as a god, does not necessarily bless those who go to battle, but rather people who observe the code of brotherhood and righteousness.[citation needed] In Chinese religion[edit]

Altar of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
at a restaurant in Beijing.

Altar of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
in Osaka.

In Chinese folk religion, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is widely referred to as "Emperor Guan" (關帝; Guāndì) and "Duke Guan" (關公; Guān Gōng), while his Taoist title is "Holy Emperor
Emperor
Lord Guan" (關聖帝君; Guān Shèng Dì Jūn). Temples and shrines dedicated exclusively to Guan Yu can be found across mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and other places with Chinese influence such as Vietnam, South Korea and Japan. Some of these temples, such as the Guandi Temple in Xiezhou (解州), Shanxi, were built exactly in the layout of an imperial residence, befitting his status as a "ruler". The apotheosis of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
occurred in stages, as he was given ever higher posthumous titles. Liu Shan, the second emperor of Shu, gave Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the posthumous title of "Marquis Zhuangmou" (壯繆侯) four decades after his death. During the Song dynasty, Emperor
Emperor
Huizong bestowed upon Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the title "Duke Zhonghui" (忠惠公), and later the title of a prince. In 1187, Emperor
Emperor
Xiaozong honoured Guan Yu
Guan Yu
as "Prince Zhuangmou Yiyong Wu'an Yingji" (壯繆義勇武安英濟王). During the Yuan dynasty, Emperor
Emperor
Wenzong changed Guan Yu's title to "Prince of Xianling Yiyong Wu'an Yingji" (顯靈義勇武安英濟王). The elevation of Guan Yu's status to that of a deity took place during the Ming dynasty. In 1614, the Wanli Emperor
Wanli Emperor
bestowed on Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the title "Holy Emperor
Emperor
Guan, the Great God Who Subdues Demons in the Three Worlds and Whose Awe Spreads Far and Moves Heaven" (三界伏魔大神威遠震天尊關聖帝君). During the Qing dynasty, the Shunzhi Emperor
Shunzhi Emperor
gave Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the title of "Guan, the Loyal and Righteous God of War, the Holy Great Deity" (忠義神武關聖大帝) in 1644. This title was expanded to "Guan the Holy Great Deity; God of War Manifesting Benevolence, Bravery and Prestige; Protector of the Country and Defender of the People; Prow and Honest Supporter of Peace and Reconciliation; Promoter of Morality, Loyalty and Righteousness" (仁勇威顯護國保民精誠綏靖翊贊宣德忠義神武關聖大帝), a total of 24 Chinese characters, by the mid-19th century. It is often shortened to "Saint of War" (武聖; Wǔ Shèng), which is of the same rank as Confucius, who is honoured the "Saint of Culture" (文聖; Wén Shèng). The Qing advancement of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
served to strengthen the loyalty of Mongol tribes, as the Mongols revered him as second only to their lamas.[10] Throughout history, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
has also been credited with many military successes. In the 14th century, his spirit was said to have aided Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming dynasty, at the Battle of Lake Poyang. In 1402, when Zhu Di launched a coup d'état and successfully deposed his nephew, the Jianwen Emperor, Zhu Di claimed that he was blessed by the spirit of Guan Yu. During the last decade of the 16th century, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was also credited with the repulse of Japanese invasion of Korea by Toyotomi Hideyoshi. The Manchu imperial clan of the Qing dynasty
Qing dynasty
was also associated with Guan Yu's martial qualities. During the 20th century, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was worshipped by the warlord Yuan Shikai, president and later a short-lived emperor of China. Today, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is still widely worshipped by the Chinese, and many shrines to him are found in homes, businesses and fraternal organisations. In Hong Kong, a shrine to Guan Yu
Guan Yu
can be found in every police station. Though by no means mandatory, Chinese police officers worship and pay respect to him. Although seemingly ironic, members of the triads and Heaven and Earth Society worship Guan Yu
Guan Yu
as well. Statues used by triads tend to hold the halberd in the left hand, and statues in police stations tend to hold the halberd in the right hand. This signifies which side Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is worshipped, by the righteous people or vice versa. The appearance of Guan Yu's face for the triads is usually more stern and threatening than the usual statue. In Hong Kong, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is often referred to as "Yi Gor" (二哥; Cantonese
Cantonese
for "second elder brother") for he was second to Liu Bei
Liu Bei
in their fictional sworn brotherhood. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is also worshipped by Chinese businessmen in Shanxi, Hong Kong, Macau and Southeast Asia as an alternative wealth god, since he is perceived to bless the upright and protect them from the wicked. Another reason is related to the release of Cao Cao
Cao Cao
during the Huarong Trail incident, in which he let Cao and his men pass through safely. For that, he was perceived to be able to extend the lifespan of people in need. Among the Cantonese
Cantonese
people who emigrated to California during the mid-19th century, the worship of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was an important element. Statues and tapestry images of the god can be found in a number of historical California joss houses (a local term for Chinese folk religion temples), where his name may be given with various Anglicised spellings, including: Kwan Dai, Kwan Tai or Kuan Ti for Guandi ( Emperor
Emperor
Guan); Kuan Kung for Guan Gong (Lord Guan), Wu Ti or Mo Dai for Wu Di (War Deity), Kuan Yu, Kwan Yu, or Quan Yu for Guan Yu. The Mendocino Joss House, a historical landmark also known as Mo Dai Miu (Wudimiao, i.e. the Temple of the Deity
Deity
of War), or Temple of Kwan Tai, built in 1852, is a typical example of the small shrines erected to Guan Yu
Guan Yu
in the United States. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is also worshipped as a door god in Chinese and Taoist temples, with portraits of him being pasted on doors to ward off evil spirits, usually in pairings with Zhang Fei, Guan Ping, Guan Sheng
Guan Sheng
or Zhou Cang. Apart from general worship, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is also commemorated in China with colossal statues such as the 1,320-tonne sculpture in Jingzhou
Jingzhou
City, Hubei
Hubei
Province, standing at 58 metres.[11]

Cart for Shinto procession with Guan Yu
Guan Yu
statue from the Kanda Shrine, now preserved at the Edo-Tokyo Museum.

In Taoism[edit] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is revered as "Holy Ruler Deity
Deity
Guan" (關聖帝君; Guān Shèng Dì Jūn) and a leading subduer of demons in Taoism. Taoist worship of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
began during the Song dynasty. Legend has it that during the second decade of the 12th century, the saltwater lake in present-day Xiezhou County gradually ceased to yield salt. Emperor Huizong then summoned Zhang Jixian (張繼先), a 30th-generation descendant of Zhang Daoling, to investigate the cause. The emperor was told that the disruption was the work of Chi You, a deity of war. Zhang Jixian then recruited the help of Guan Yu, who battled Chi You over the lake and triumphed, whereupon the lake resumed salt production. Emperor
Emperor
Huizong then bestowed upon Guan Yu
Guan Yu
the title "Immortal of Chongning" (崇寧真君; Chóngníng Zhēnjūn), formally introducing the latter as a deity into Taoism. In the early Ming dynasty, the 42nd Celestial Master, Zhang Zhengchang (張正常), recorded the incident in his book Lineage of the Han Celestial Masters (漢天師世家), the first Taoist classic to affirm the legend. Today, Taoist practices are predominant in Guan Yu worship. Many temples dedicated to Guan Yu, including the Emperor
Emperor
Guan Temple in Xiezhou County, show heavy Taoist influence. Every year, on the 24th day of the sixth month on the lunar calendar (Guan Yu's birthday in legend), a street parade in Guan Yu's honour would also be held. In Buddhism[edit]

Imperial thangka of the Qianlong Emperor
Qianlong Emperor
(1736–95) depicting Guan Yu as Sangharama Bodhisattva.

In Chinese Buddhism, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is revered by most practising Buddhists as Sangharama Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
(伽蓝菩萨; 伽藍菩薩; Qiélán Púsà) a heavenly protector of the Buddhist dharma. Sangharama in Sanskrit
Sanskrit
means 'community garden' (sangha, community + arama, garden) and thus 'monastery'. The term Sangharama also refer to the dharmapala class of devas and spirits assigned to guard the Buddhist monastery, the dharma, and the faith itself. Over time and as an act of syncreticism, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was seen as the representative guardian of the temple and the garden in which it stands. His statue traditionally is situated in the far left of the main altar, opposite his counterpart Skanda. According to Buddhist legends, in 592, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
manifested himself one night before the Zen master Zhiyi, the founder of the Tiantai
Tiantai
school of Buddhism, along with a retinue of spiritual beings. Zhiyi
Zhiyi
was then in deep meditation on Yuquan Hill (玉泉山) when he was distracted by Guan Yu's presence. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
then requested the master to teach him about the dharma. After receiving Buddhist teachings from the master, Guan Yu
Guan Yu
took refuge in the triple gems and also requested the Five Precepts. Henceforth, it is said that Guan Yu
Guan Yu
made a vow to become a guardian of temples and the dharma. Legends also claim that Guan Yu assisted Zhiyi
Zhiyi
in the construction of the Yuquan Temple, which still stands today. In popular culture[edit] Chinese opera[edit]

A Qing dynasty
Qing dynasty
opera mask of Guan Yu.

Guan Yu
Guan Yu
appears in Chinese operas such as Huarong Trail, Red Cliffs, and other excerpts from Romance of the Three Kingdoms. His costume is a green military opera uniform with armour covering his right arm and the knees of his pants. The actor's face is painted red with a few black lines, to represent honour and courage. He also wears a long three-section black beard made of yak hair and carries the Green Dragon Crescent Blade. Traditionally, after the show ends, the actor has to wash his face, burn joss paper, light incense, and pray to Chinese deities. Film and television[edit] Notable actors who have portrayed Guan Yu
Guan Yu
in film and television include: Lu Shuming, in Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
(1994); Wang Yingquan, in The Legend of Guan Gong
The Legend of Guan Gong
(2004); Ti Lung, in Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon (2008); Ba Sen, in Red Cliff (2008–2009); Yu Rongguang, in Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
(2010); Donnie Yen, in The Lost Bladesman
The Lost Bladesman
(2011); Han Geng
Han Geng
in Dynasty Warriors
Dynasty Warriors
(upcoming). Films which make references to Guan Yu
Guan Yu
include: Stephen Chow's comedy film From Beijing
Beijing
with Love (1994), which, in one scene, refers to the story of Hua Tuo
Hua Tuo
performing surgery on Guan Yu's arm; Zhang Yimou's Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles
Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles
(2005), in which the fictional story of Guan Yu
Guan Yu
slaying six generals and crossing five passes forms a major part of the narrative; the horror comedy film My Name Is Bruce (2007), where Guan Yu's vengeful spirit is accidentally set free by a group of teenagers and he begins to terrorise their town. Manga[edit] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is referenced in the manga Battle Vixens
Battle Vixens
(as a schoolgirl Kan-u Unchou) and BB Senshi Sangokuden (as ZZ Gundam, who is portrayed as Guan Yu
Guan Yu
Gundam). Games[edit] Guan Yu
Guan Yu
appears as a playable character in many video games based on Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
which are produced by Koei, including: the strategy game series of the same title as the novel; the action game series Dynasty Warriors
Dynasty Warriors
and Warriors Orochi. Other non-Koei titles in which he also appears include: Puzzle & Dragons;[12] Sango Fighter; Destiny of an Emperor; Atlantica Online; and Smite. He is also referenced in Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom, Titan Quest, and Koihime Musō. Guan Yu
Guan Yu
is referenced in the Portal
Portal
Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
of the card game Magic: The Gathering on a playable card. He also appears in the History Channel's Anachronism card game. See also[edit]

List of people of the Three Kingdoms

Notes[edit]

^ a b The Zizhi Tongjian
Zizhi Tongjian
recorded that Guan Yu
Guan Yu
was captured and executed in the 12th month of the 24th year of the Jian'an era of the reign of Emperor
Emperor
Xian of Han.[1] This month corresponds to 23 January to 21 February 220 in the Gregorian calendar. ^ In the Eastern Han dynasty, one chi was approximately 23.1 cm, two chi was approximately 46.2 cm (~18 inches) ^ His face had a dark red hue to it, like the colour of dark jujube fruit. ^ The corners of his eyes were upturned ^ They were long and tapered. ^ In the Eastern Han dynasty, one chi was approximately 23.1 cm, nine chi was approximately 2.079 metres (6 feet, 9.85 inches).[3][4][5] and had a two chi[b] long beard; his face was of the colour of a dark zao,[c] with lips that were red and plump; his eyes were like those of a crimson phoenix,[d] and his eyebrows resembled reclining silkworms.[e] He had a dignified air and looked quite majestic." ^ The peerage of marquis was divided into three grades during the Han dynasty and Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
period. These are, in ascending order of prestige, tinghou (亭侯; village marquis), xianghou (郷侯; district marquis) and xianhou (縣侯; county marquis). Guan Yu's was the first. ^ See Lü Meng#Invasion of Jing Province
Jing Province
for details. ^ The "peerless beard" referred to Guan Yu
Guan Yu
because Guan Yu
Guan Yu
had a beautiful beard.[Sanguozhi 19]) ^ Guoshi (國士) could loosely translated as "gentleman of the state". It referred to persons who had made very outstanding contributions to their countries. See the dictionary definition of 國士.

References[edit]

Citations from volume 36 of the Sanguozhi

^ (關羽字雲長,本字長生,河東解人也。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (亡命奔涿郡。先主於鄉里合徒衆,而羽與張飛為之禦侮。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (先主為平原相,以羽、飛為別部司馬,分統部曲。先主與二人寢則同牀,恩若兄弟。而稠人廣坐,侍立終日,隨先主周旋,不避艱險。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (先主之襲殺徐州刺史車冑,使羽守下邳城,行太守事,而身還小沛。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (建安五年,曹公東征,先主奔袁紹。曹公禽羽以歸,拜為偏將軍,禮之甚厚。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (紹遣大將軍顏良攻東郡太守劉延於白馬,曹公使張遼及羽為先鋒擊之。羽望見良麾蓋,策馬刺良於萬衆之中,斬其首還,紹諸將莫能當者,遂解白馬圍。曹公即表封羽為漢壽亭侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (初,曹公壯羽為人,而察其心神無乆留之意,謂張遼曰:「卿試以情問之。」旣而遼以問羽,羽歎曰:「吾極知曹公待我厚,然吾受劉將軍厚恩,誓以共死,不可背之。吾終不留,吾要當立效以報曹公乃去。」遼以羽言報曹公,曹公義之。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (及羽殺顏良,曹公知其必去,重加賞賜。羽盡封其所賜,拜書告辭,而奔先主於袁軍。左右欲追之,曹公曰:「彼各為其主,勿追也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (從先主就劉表。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (表卒,曹公定荊州,先主自樊將南渡江,別遣羽乘船數百艘會江陵。曹公追至當陽長阪,先主斜趣漢津,適與羽船相值,共至夏口。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (孫權遣兵佐先主拒曹公,曹公引軍退歸。先主收江南諸郡,乃封拜元勳,以羽為襄陽太守、盪寇將軍,駐江北。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (先主西定益州,拜羽董督荊州事。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (二十四年,先主為漢中王,拜羽為前將軍,假節鉞。是歲,羽率衆攻曹仁於樊。曹公遣于禁助仁。秋,大霖雨,漢水汎溢,禁所督七軍皆沒。禁降羽,羽又斬將軍龐德。梁郟、陸渾羣盜或遙受羽印號,為之支黨,羽威震華夏。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (曹公議徙許都以避其銳,司馬宣王、蔣濟以為關羽得志,孫權必不願也。可遣人勸權躡其後,許割江南以封權,則樊圍自解。曹公從之。先是,權遣使為子索羽女,羽罵辱其使,不許婚,權大怒。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (而曹公遣徐晃救曹仁,羽不能克,引軍退還。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (又南郡太守麋芳在江陵,將軍傅士仁屯公安,素皆嫌羽自輕己。羽之出軍,芳、仁供給軍資不悉相救。羽言「還當治之」,芳、仁咸懷懼不安。於是權陰誘芳、仁,芳、仁使人迎權。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (權已據江陵,盡虜羽士衆妻子,羽軍遂散。權遣將逆擊羽,斬羽及子平于臨沮。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (追謚羽曰壯繆侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (羽美鬚髯,故亮謂之髯。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (羽聞馬超來降,舊非故人,羽書與諸葛亮,問超人才可誰比類。亮知羽護前,乃荅之曰:「孟起兼資文武,雄烈過人,一世之傑,黥、彭之徒,當與益德並驅爭先,猶未及髯之絕倫逸羣也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (羽省書大恱,以示賔客。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (羽甞為流矢所中,貫其左臂,後創雖愈,每至陰雨,骨常疼痛,醫曰:「矢鏃有毒,毒入于骨,當破臂作創,刮骨去毒,然後此患乃除耳。」羽便伸臂令醫劈之。時羽適請諸將飲食相對,臂血流離,盈於盤器,而羽割炙引酒,言笑自若。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (子興嗣。興字安國,少有令問,丞相諸葛亮深器異之。弱冠為侍中、中監軍,數歲卒。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (子統嗣,尚公主,官至虎賁中郎將。卒,無子,以興庶子彝續封。) Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (評曰:關羽、張飛皆稱萬人之敵,為世虎臣。羽報效曹公,飛義釋嚴顏,並有國士之風。然羽剛而自矜,飛暴而無恩,以短取敗,理數之常也。) Sanguozhi vol. 36.

Citations from elsewhere in the Sanguozhi

^ (靈帝末,黃巾起,州郡各舉義兵,先主率其屬從校尉鄒靖討黃巾賊有功,除安喜尉。) Sanguozhi vol. 32. ^ (先主據下邳。靈等還,先主乃殺徐州刺史車冑,留關羽守下邳,而身還小沛。) Sanguozhi vol. 32. ^ (五年,曹公東征先主,先主敗績。曹公盡收其衆,虜先主妻子,并禽關羽以歸。) Sanguozhi vol. 32. ^ (曹公與袁紹相拒於官渡,汝南黃巾劉辟等叛曹公應紹。紹遣先主將兵與辟等略許下。關羽亡歸先主。曹公遣曹仁將兵擊先主,先主還紹軍,陰欲離紹,乃說紹南連荊州牧劉表。紹遣先主將本兵復至汝南,與賊龔都等合,衆數千人。 ... 曹公旣破紹,自南擊先主。先主遣麋笁、孫乾與劉表相聞,表自郊迎,以上賔禮待之,益其兵,使屯新野。) Sanguozhi vol. 32. ^ (聞先主已過,曹公將精騎五千急追之,一日一夜行三百餘里,及於當陽之長坂。) Sanguozhi vol. 32. ^ (後從平荊州,留屯襄陽,擊關羽、蘇非等,皆走之, ...) Sanguozhi vol. 17. ^ (與樂進討關羽於尋口,有功 ... 又攻羽輜重於漢津,燒其船於荊城。) Sanguozhi vol. 18. ^ (及羽與肅鄰界,數生狐疑,疆埸紛錯,肅常以歡好撫之。備旣定益州,權求長沙、零、桂,備不承旨,權遣呂蒙率衆進取。備聞,自還公安,遣羽爭三郡。) Sanguozhi vol. 54. ^ (羽號有三萬人,自擇選銳士五千人,投縣上流十餘里淺瀨,云欲夜涉渡。肅與諸將議。 ... 肅便選千兵益寧,寧乃夜往。羽聞之,住不渡,而結柴營,今遂名此處為關羽瀨。) Sanguozhi vol. 55. ^ (備遂割湘水為界,於是罷軍。) Sanguozhi vol. 54. ^ (賊圍頭有屯,又別屯四冢。晃揚聲當攻圍頭屯,而密攻四冢。羽見四冢欲壞,自將步騎五千出戰,晃擊之,退走,遂追陷與俱入圍,破之,或自投沔水死。) Sanguozhi vol. 17. ^ (羽果信之,稍撤兵以赴樊。魏使于禁救樊,羽盡禽禁等,人馬數萬,託以糧乏,擅取湘關米。權聞之,遂行,先遣蒙在前。蒙至尋陽,盡伏其精兵[][]中,使白衣搖櫓,作商賈人服,晝夜兼行,至羽所置江邊屯候,盡收縛之,是故羽不聞知。遂到南郡,士仁、麋芳皆降。) Sanguozhi vol. 54. ^ (會權尋至,羽自知孤窮,乃走麥城,西至漳鄉,衆皆委羽而降。權使朱然、潘璋斷其徑路,即父子俱獲,荊州遂定。) Sanguozhi vol. 54. ^ (權征關羽,璋與朱然斷羽走道,到臨沮,住夾石。璋部下司馬馬忠禽羽,并羽子平、都督趙累等。) Sanguozhi vol. 55. ^ ([景耀]三年秋九月,追謚故將軍關羽、張飛、馬超、龐統、黃忠。) Sanguozhi vol. 33.

Citations from the Sanguozhi zhu

^ (江表傳云:羽好左氏傳,諷誦略皆上口。) Jiang Biao Zhuan annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (魏書云:以羽領徐州。) Wei Shu annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (傅子曰:遼欲白太祖,恐太祖殺羽,不白,非事君之道,乃歎曰:「公,君父也;羽,兄弟耳。」遂白之。太祖曰:「事君不忘其本,天下義士也。度何時能去?」遼曰:「羽受公恩,必立效報公而後去也。」) Fu Zi annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (臣松之以為曹公知羽不留而心嘉其志,去不遣追以成其義,自非有王霸之度,孰能至於此乎?斯實曹氏之休美。) Pei Songzhi's annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (蜀記曰:羽初出軍圍樊,夢豬嚙其足,語子平曰:「吾今年衰矣,然不得還!」) Shu Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (蜀記曰:羽與晃宿相愛,遙共語,但說平生,不及軍事。須臾,晃下馬宣令:「得關雲長頭,賞金千斤。」羽驚怖,謂晃曰:「大兄,是何言邪!」晃曰:「此國之事耳。」) Shu Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (典略曰:羽圍樊,權遣使求助之,勑使莫速進,又遣主簿先致命於羽。羽忿其淹遲,又自已得于禁等,乃罵曰:「狢子敢爾,如使樊城拔,吾不能滅汝邪!」權聞之,知其輕己,偽手書以謝羽,許以自往。) Dianlue annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (臣松之以為荊、吳雖外睦,而內相猜防,故權之襲羽,潛師密發。按呂蒙傳云:「伏精兵於[][]之中,使白衣搖櫓,作商賈服。」以此言之,羽不求助於權,權必不語羽當往也。若許相援助,何故匿其形迹乎?) Pei Songzhi's annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (蜀記曰:權遣將軍擊羽,獲羽及子平。權欲活羽以敵劉、曹,左右曰:「狼子不可養,後必為害。曹公不即除之,自取大患,乃議徙都。今豈可生!」乃斬之。) Shu Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (臣松之桉吳書:孫權遣將潘璋逆斷羽走路,羽至即斬,且臨沮去江陵二三百里,豈容不時殺羽,方議其生死乎?又云「權欲活羽以敵劉、曹」,此之不然,可以絕智者之口。) Pei Songzhi's annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (吳歷曰:權送羽首於曹公,以諸侯禮葬其屍骸。) Wu Li annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (蜀記曰:曹公與劉備圍呂布於下邳,關羽啟公,布使秦宜祿行求救,乞娶其妻,公許之。臨破,又屢啟於公。公疑其有異色,先遣迎看,因自留之,羽心不自安。此與魏氏春秋所說無異也。) Shu Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (初,羽隨先主從公圍呂布於濮陽,時秦宜祿為布求救於張楊。羽啟公:「妻無子,下城,乞納宜祿妻。」公許之。及至城門,復白。公疑其有色,李本作他。自納之。) Huayang Guo Zhi vol. 6. ^ (蜀記曰:初,劉備在許,與曹公共獵。獵中,衆散,羽勸備殺公,備不從。及在夏口,飄颻江渚,羽怒曰:「往日獵中,若從羽言,可無今日之困。」備曰:「是時亦為國家惜之耳;若天道輔正,安知此不為福邪!」) Shu Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (臣松之以為備後與董承等結謀,但事泄不克諧耳,若為國家惜曹公,其如此言何!羽若果有此勸而備不肯從者,將以曹公腹心親戚,寔繁有徒,事不宿構,非造次所行;曹雖可殺,身必不免,故以計而止,何惜之有乎!旣往之事,故託為雅言耳。) Pei Songzhi's annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36. ^ (蜀記曰:龐德子會,隨鍾、鄧伐蜀,蜀破,盡滅關氏家。) Shu Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 36.

Other citations

^ ([建安二十四年]十二月,璋司馬馬忠獲羽及其子平於章鄉,斬之,遂定荊州。) Zizhi Tongjian
Zizhi Tongjian
vol. 68. ^ Perkins (1999), p. 192. ^ Hulsewé (1961), pp. 206–207. ^ Dubs (1938), pp. 276–280. ^ Dubs (1938), p. 160. ^ (名與實爽曰繆。) Yizhoushu vol. 6. ch. 54. ^ Brunnert and Hagelstrom (2013), p. 494. ^ Yan (2006), p. 277. ^ You (2010). ^ Roberts (1991), p. 970. ^ "Monumental 1,320-Ton Sculpture of Chinese War God Watches Over the City". 2016-07-19. Retrieved 2016-07-20.  ^ http://www.puzzledragonx.com/en/monster.asp?n=1242

Bibliography[edit]

(Author unknown) (4th century BC). Yi Zhou Shu. Brunnert, H.S.; Hagelstrom, V.V. (2013). Present Day Political Organization of China (reprint ed.). Routledge. ISBN 978-1-135-79795-9.  Chen, Shou (3rd century). Records of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
(Sanguozhi). Dubs, Homer H. (1938). "Chapter IV, Appendix I, Standard Weights and Measures of Han Times". The History of the Former Han Dynasty by Pan Ku. Volume 1. Baltimore, Maryland: Waverly Press, Inc.  Dubs, Homer H. (1938). The History of the Former Han Dynasty by Pan Ku. Volume 3. Ithaca, New York: Spoken Languages Services, Inc.  Hulsewé, A.F.P. (1961). "Han measures". T'oung pao Archives. XLIX, Livre 3.  Luo, Guanzhong (14th century). Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms
(Sanguo Yanyi). Pei, Songzhi (5th century). Annotations to Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi zhu). Perkins, Dorothy (1999). Encyclopedia of China: The Essential Reference to China, Its History and Culture. New York: Checkmark Books. ISBN 978-0-8160-2693-7.  Roberts, Moss (1991). Three Kingdoms: A Historical Novel. Oakland, California: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-22503-9.  Sima, Guang (1084). Zizhi Tongjian. Yan, Qingxiang (2006). 從關羽到關帝 (From Guan Yu
Guan Yu
to Guan Di) (in Chinese). Yuanliu Publishing. ISBN 957-32-5763-7.  You, Zi'an (2010). 敷化宇內:清代以來關帝善書及其信仰的傳播 (pdf). Journal of Chinese Studies No. 50 (in Chinese). Hong Kong: The Chinese University of Hong Kong. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 

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has original text related to this article: Biography of Guan Yu

v t e

Notable people at the end of the Han dynasty
Han dynasty
(189–220)

Emperors

Ling Shao Xian

Empresses and noble ladies

Empress Dowager Dong Empress He Consort Tang Empress Fu Empress Cao

Regents

He Jin Dong Zhuo Wang Yun Li Jue & Guo Si Cao Cao Cao Pi

Warlords

Bao Xin Bian Zhang Ding Yuan Gao Gan Gongsun Du Gongsun Gong Gongsun Kang Gongsun Zan Han Fu Han Sui Han Xuan Jin Xuan Kong Rong Kong Zhou Liu Bei Liu Biao Liu Cong Liu Du Liu Qi Liu Xun Liu Yan Liu Yao Liu Yu Liu Zhang Lü Bu Ma Chao Ma Teng Qiao Mao Shi Xie Sun Ce Sun Jian Sun Quan Tao Qian Wang Kuang Wang Lang Xu Gong Yan Baihu Yang Qiu Yuan Tan Yuan Shao Yuan Shang Yuan Shu Yuan Xi Yuan Yi Zang Hong Ze Rong Zhang Jue Zhang Lu Zhang Xiu Zhang Yan Zhang Yang Zhao Fan

Civil officers

Cai Yong Cao Song Chang Lin Chen Deng Chen Gong Chen Gui Chen Ji Chen Lin Cheng Yu Chenggong Ying Cui Yan Ding Yi Fa Zheng Gao You Gu Hui Gu Shao Guan Jing Guo Jia Guo Tu Guo Yuan Han Ji He Kui Hua Xin Jia Xu Jian Yong Ju Shou Kuai Liang Kuai Yue Li Ru Liang Mao Liu Dai Liu Fu Liu Hong Lou Gui Lu Kang Ma Liang Ma Midi Mao Jie Mi Fang Mi Zhu Pang Ji Pang Tong Pang Xi Pang Yu Pei Qian Peng Yang Qiao Xuan Qin Song Shen Pei Sheng Xian Shi Ren Sima Fang Sima Lang Sima Zhi Su Ze Sun Qian Tian Feng Wang Can Wang Xiu Wei Kang Wu Zhi Xin Pi Xin Ping Xing Yong Xu Shao Xu Shu Xu Yi Xu You Xun Chen Xun Shuang Xun You Xun Yu Xun Yue Yan Wen Yan Xiang Yang Biao Yang Jun Yang Xiu Ying Shao Yuan Huan Zhang Cheng Zhang Fan Zhang Hong Zhang Miao Zhang Song Zhang Wen Zhang Yu Zhang Zhao Zhao Ang Zhao Qi Zhong Yao Zhou Qun Zhuge Liang Zhuge Xuan

Military officers

Bu Zhi Cai Mao Cao Bao Cao Chun Cao Hong Cao Ren Cao Xing Cao Xiu Cao Zhang Chen Shi Chen Wu Cheng Pu Chunyu Qiong Dian Wei Ding Feng Dong Cheng Dong Xi Fan Chou Gan Ning Gao Shun Gu Li Guan Yu Guan Ping Guo Yuan Han Dang Han Hao Han Xian Hao Meng He Qi Hou Cheng Hu Zhen Hua Xiong Huang Gai Huang Quan Huang Zhong Huang Zu Huangfu Song Ji Ling Jia Kui Jiang Qin Jiang Xu Li Dian Li Su Li Tong Li Yan Liao Hua Ling Cao Ling Tong Liu Feng Lu Su Lu Xun Lu Zhi Lü Fan Lü Meng Man Chong Meng Da Niu Fu Niu Jin Pan Zhang Pang De Qian Zhao Qin Yilu Qu Yi Ren Jun Sima Yi Sun Ben Sun Fu Sun Jiao Sun Jing Sun Yi Sun Yu Taishi Ci Tian Kai Wang Zhong Wen Chou Wen Ping Wu Jing Wu Yi Xiahou Dun Xiahou Yuan Xu Chu Xu Huang Xu Rong Xu Sheng Yan Liang Yan Rou Yan Xing Yan Yan Yang Feng Yin Li Yu Jin Yue Jin Zang Ba Zhang Fei Zhang He Zhang Ji Zhang Liao Zhang Ren Zhao Yan Zhao Yun Zhou Ang Zhou Tai Zhou Xin Zhou Yu Zhou Yu
Zhou Yu
(Renming) Zhu Huan Zhu Jun Zhu Ling Zhu Ran Zhu Zhi Zhuge Jin

Other notable women

Lady Bian Bu Lianshi Cai Yan Lady Gan Lady Mi Two Qiaos Lady Sun Wang Yi Lady Wu Zhang Chunhua Lady Zhen

Other notable figures

Bing Yuan Cao Ang Cao Chong Cao Xiong Cao Zhi Gan Ji Guan Lu Hua Tuo Huang Chengyan Ji Ben Jian Shuo Jiang Gan Liu Bao Mi Heng Qiuliju Sima Hui Sun Kuang Tadun Ten Attendants Tian Chou Zhang Zhongjing Zuo Ci

v t e

Chinese Buddhist pantheon

Buddhas

Śākyamuni Amitābha
Amitābha
(Āmítuó Fó) Bhaisajyaguru
Bhaisajyaguru
(Yàoshī Fó) Vairocana
Vairocana
(Pílú Zhēnǎ Fó)

Bodhisattvas

Guānshì Yīn (Avalokiteśvara) Manjushri
Manjushri
(Wénshūshili) Samantabhadra
Samantabhadra
(Pǔxián) Ksitigarbha (Dìzàng Wáng) Mahāsthāmaprāpta (Dàshìzhì) Vajrapāṇi (Jīngāng Shǒu) Mílè Púsa (Maitreya) Cundī (Zhǔntí)

Deities

Four Heavenly Kings
Four Heavenly Kings
(Sì Tiānwáng) Sangharama (Qíelán) Skanda (Wéituó) Yama (Yán Wáng) Jìgōng Sudhana
Sudhana
(Shàncái) Nagakanya (Lóngnǚ) Marici (Mólìzhītiān)

Sangha

Mahākāśyapa Ānanda Moggallāna Bodhidharma
Bodhidharma
(Dámó) An Shigao Xuánzàng Fǎxiǎn Yìjìng Shàn Dào Huìguǒ Emperor
Emperor
Ming Emperor
Emperor
Wu Eighteen Luohans

Mahayana Pure Land Chinese Chán Tantrism Chinese mythology Religion in China

v t e

Bodhisattvas

General list

Avalokitesvara (Guanyin) Manjushri Samantabhadra Kshitigarbha Maitreya Mahasthamaprapta Ākāśagarbha

Chinese

Skanda Sangharama (Guan Yu)

Vajrayana

Padmasambhava Mandarava Tara Vajrapani Vajrasattva Sitatapatra Cundi

Other

B. R. Ambedkar Bhaishajyaraja Candraprabha Nagarjuna Niō Shantideva Supratisthitacaritra Supushpachandra Suryaprabha Vasudhara Visistacaritra Visuddhacaritra

Authority control

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