(13.3) Huà Xīn 華歆 [Zǐyú 子魚]

Huà Xīn, appellation Zǐyú, was a Píngyuán Gāotáng man. Gāotáng was a famous capital of Qí, and there was no lack of well-attired [gentry-scholars] traveling through its markets and streets. Xīn was an official there, and whenever he was on leave he would leave the government office and return home, shutting the door. When discussing affairs he was just and unbiased, and to the the end would not harm others. (1)

華歆字子魚,平原高唐人也。高唐為齊名都,衣冠無不游行市里。歆為吏,休沐出府,則歸家闔門。議論持平,終不毀傷人。〔一〕

  • (1) Wèilüè states: Xīn and Bǐng Yuán of Běihǎi and Guǎn Níng all traveled and studied together. The three men were friendly with one another, and at the time people called the three men as “One Dragon.” Xīn was the Dragon’s Head, Yuán was the Dragon’s Belly, and Níng was the Dragon’s Tail.
  • Your Servant Sōngzhī believes that Bǐng Gēnjǔ in his fame for planning and virtue was not necessarily beneath Excellency Huà. Guǎn Yòuān maintained virtue while traveling far, and it is probably not suitable to be made the Tail. Wèilüè in this speech cannot be used to decide on a ranking.

〔一〕 魏略曰:歆與北海邴原、管寧俱游學,三人相善,時人號三人為「一龍」,歆為龍頭,原為龍腹,寧為龍尾。臣松之以為邴根矩之徽猷懿望,不必有愧華公,管幼安含德高蹈,又恐弗當為尾。魏略此言,未可以定其先後也。

Táoqiū Hóng of the same prefecture was also well-known, and believed his wisdom and perceptiveness surpassed that of Xīn. At the time Wáng Fēn and other leading heroes plotted to depose Líng-dì, as told in Wǔ-jì [SGZ 1]. (2)

同郡陶丘洪亦知名,自以明見過歆。時王芬與豪傑謀廢靈帝。語在武紀。〔二〕

  • (2) Wèishū says that Fēn was famous across the whole empire Under Heaven.

〔二〕 魏書稱芬有大名於天下。

[Wáng] Fēn secretly summoned Xīn and Hóng to together make a plan. Hóng wished to go along with it, but Xīn stopped him and said: “To depose the enthroned is a serious decision. Even Yī [Yǐn] and Huò [Guāng] found it difficult. [Wáng] Fēn by nature is careless and lacks military ability. This is certain to fail, and bring disaster upon our clans. You must not go!” [Táoqiū] Hóng heeded Xīn’s words and stopped. Later [Wáng] Fēn indeed failed, and [Táoqiū] Hóng then admired [Huà Xīn].

芬陰呼歆、洪共定計,洪欲行,歆止之曰:「夫廢立大事,伊、霍之所難。芬性疏而不武,此必無成,而禍將及族。子其無往!」洪從歆言而止。後芬果敗,洪乃服。

He was nominated as Filial and Incorrupt, made a Cadet Internal, fell ill and resigned office. Líng-dì ended [189] and Hé Jìn managed the government, summoning Zhèng Tài of Hénán, Xún Yōu of Yǐngchuān, along with Xīn and others. Xīn arrived and was appointed Secretariat Cadet. Dǒng Zhuó moved Heaven’s Son to Cháng’ān [190], and Xīn asked to be sent out as Magistrate of Xià Guī, but because of illness could not go, and therefore went from Lántián to Nányáng. (3) At the time Yuán Shù was at Ráng, and detained Xīn.

舉孝廉,除郎中,病,去官。靈帝崩,何進輔政,徵河南鄭泰、潁川荀攸及歆等。歆到,為尚書郎。董卓遷天子長安,歆求出為下邽令,病不行,遂從藍田至南陽。〔三〕時袁術在穰,留歆。

  • (3) Huà Jiào’s Pǔxù states: Xīn when young went far and was well known. He fled the chaos of the western capital [Cháng’ān], and with his comrades Zhèng Tài and others, six to seven men, secretly went on foot through Wǔ Pass. On the road they came across a lone man, who wished to join them, and all felt sorry for him and wished to permit it. Xīn alone said: “We cannot. Now we are already in the middle of danger, and whether in disaster or fortune or suffering harm, we must act as one. If we accept people without reason, we do not know if it will be righteous. Once we have accepted him, if there are problems, can we in the middle of things abandon him?” The others could not bear [to refuse the man] and in the end accepted him. This man [later] fell in a well on the road, and all wished to abandon him. Xīn said: “We have already accepted him. To abandon him is not righteous.” He led them to together return and rescue [the man], and after that depart. The others therefore greatly respected his righteousness.

〔三〕 華嶠譜敘曰:歆少以高行顯名。避西京之亂,與同志鄭泰等六七人,閒步出武關。道遇一丈夫獨行,願得俱,皆哀欲許之。歆獨曰:「不可。今已在危險之中,禍福患害,義猶一也。無故受人,不知其義。既以受之,若有進退,可中棄乎!」眾不忍,卒與俱行。此丈夫中道墮井,皆欲棄之。歆曰:「已與俱矣,棄之不義。」相率共還出之,而後別去。眾乃大義之。

Xīn advised [Yuán] Shù to send an army to advance and attack [Dǒng] Zhuó, but [Yuán] Shù would not listen. Xīn wished to leave, and it happened that Heaven’s Son had sent Grand Tutor Mǎ Mìdì to settle the east of the Passes, and [Mǎ] Mìdì enlisted Xīn as an official. He went east to Xúzhōu, and an Imperial Order appointed him Administrator of Yùzhāng. Because his government was peaceful and did not cause trouble, the people were grateful and loved him. (4)

歆說術使進軍討卓,術不能用。歆欲棄去,會天子使太傅馬日磾安集關東,日磾辟歆為掾。東至徐州,詔即拜歆豫章太守,以為政清靜不煩,吏民感而愛之。〔四〕

  • (4) Wèilüè states: When Inspector of Yángzhōu Liú Yáo died, his followers wished to take Xīn as their leader. Xīn believed this was usurping authority and so was not appropriate for a servant official. The followers waited for months, but in the end he declined and dispersed them and would not agree.

〔四〕 魏略曰:揚州刺史劉繇死,其眾願奉歆為主。歆以為因時擅命,非人臣之宜。眾守之連月,卒謝遣之,不從。

Sūn Cè captured the lands east of the Jiāng. Xīn knew [Sūn] Cè was skilled in using troops, and so in a plain headscarf [rather than official’s headdress] went to welcome him. [Sūn] Cè, because [Huà Xīn] was older, treated him with the respect due to an exalted guest. (5)

孫策略地江東,歆知策善用兵,乃幅巾奉迎。策以其長者,待以上賓之禮。〔五〕

  • (5) Hú Chōng’s Wúlì states: When Sūn Cè attacked Yùzhāng, he first sent Yú Fān to first persuade Xīn [to surrender]. Xīn answered: “I have long been beyond the Jiāng, and often wish to return north. If Sūn [Cè] of Kuàijī comes, then I will go.” [Yú] Fān returned and reported this to [Sūn] Cè, and [Sūn] Cè therefore advanced. Xīn in a hemp headcloth welcomed [Sūn] Cè, and [Sūn] Cè said to Xīn: “Honored sir, you are mature and virtuous with great renown, and both near and far all come to join you. I am am young and inexperienced, so it is appropriate to honor you with the courtesies of a younger generation [to a teacher].” He then bowed to Xīn.
  • Huà Jiào’s Pǔxù states: Sūn Cè had captured Yángzhōu, and with flourishing troops moved to Yùzhāng, and the entire commandery was very afraid. The officials gathered and asked to go to the outskirts to welcome him, but were told: “This cannot be.” [Sūn] Cè advanced a little and repeatedly showed his military strength, but again they were not permitted. When [Sūn] Cè arrived, the whole office all went and begged to go out and flee from him. Then he laughed and said: “Now the General has himself come, how can we flee from him?” Shortly afterward below the gates it was announced: “General Sūn has arrived.” [Sūn Cè] asked to meet, and then went forward and sat with Xīn, and they conversed for a long time, and at night departed and left. The righteous gentlemen heard this, and all sighed and submitted. [Sūn] Cè thereupon treated him with the courtesy expected of a junior relative and courtesy due to a superior guest. At the time the number of worthy scholar-gentlemen from all four directions who had fled south of the Jiāng had become very many, and all came to join him, and each man watched the situation. Every time [Sūn] Cè held a great assembly, of those seated none dared speak first. Xīn at the time rose to change clothes, and then the discussion burst out. Xīn could drink a great deal, over a dàn without losing control. Everyone observed him, and often thought his clothing and headwear were unusual. South of the Jiāng they called him “Huà Sitting Alone.”
  • Yú Pǔ’s Jiāngbiǎozhuàn states: Sūn Cè was at Jiāoqiū and sent Yú Fān to first persuade Xīn [to surrender]. When [Yú] Fān left, Xīn asked his Merit Officer Liú Yī to come discuss it. [Liú] Yī advised Xīn to remain in the city and send orders to welcome the army. Xīn said: “Though I was appointed by Inspector Liú [Yáo], one employed by the Ascended is only an official with a split tally. Now I will follow your plan, and only fear that death will not be enough.” [Liú] Yī said: “Wáng [Láng] Jǐngxīng was employed by the Hàn Court, and moreover at the time the people and armies of Kuàijī were flourishing and strong, yet he was forgiven [for surrendering]. Wise governor how can you worry?” Therefore that night the order was sent, and the next morning he went out from the city, and sent officials to welcome them. [Sūn] Cè then advanced his army, and met with Xīn, treated him as a superior guest, and received him with the courtesy toward a friend.
  • Sūn Shèng states: The Dàyǎ informs of how to act in society, that one must first examine an uncertain period, and by this settle on a decision, or else wrap oneself as protection and peacefully follow the righteous way to reach principle. Xīn did not have the military ability of Yí or Hào, and also had lost his honor as a minister to the ruler, thus he yielded to the persuasion of a false classicist [Yú Fān], linked arms with a follower of oppression and plunder [Sūn Cè], his seat was seized in one move and his integrity collapsed all at that time. Previously when Xǔ and Cài lost their positions, they could not be ranked among the lords. When the regional lord truly came, the Lǔ people thought he was lowly. Considering the case of Xīn, his fault was truly great!

〔五〕 胡沖吳歷曰:孫策擊豫章,先遣虞翻說歆。歆答曰:「歆久在江表,常欲北歸;孫會稽來,吾便去也。」翻還報策,策乃進軍。歆葛巾迎策,策謂歆曰:「府君年德名望,遠近所歸;策年幼稚,宜脩子弟之禮。」便向歆拜。華嶠譜敘曰:孫策略有揚州,盛兵徇豫章,一郡大恐。官屬請出郊迎,教曰:「無然。」策稍進,復白發兵,又不聽。及策至,一府皆造閣,請出避之。乃笑曰:「今將自來,何遽避之?」有頃,門下白曰:「孫將軍至。」請見,乃前與歆共坐,談議良久,夜乃別去。義士聞之,皆長歎息而心自服也。策遂親執子弟之禮,禮為上賓。是時四方賢士大夫避地江南者甚眾,皆出其下,人人望風。每策大會,坐上莫敢先發言,歆時起更衣,則論議讙譁。歆能劇飲,至石餘不亂,眾人微察,常以其整衣冠為異,江南號之曰「華獨坐」。虞溥江表傳曰:孫策在椒丘,遣虞翻說歆。翻既去,歆請功曹劉壹入議。壹勸歆住城,遣檄迎軍。歆曰:「吾雖劉刺史所置,上用,猶是剖符吏也。今從卿計,恐死有餘責矣。」壹曰:「王景興既漢朝所用,且爾時會稽人眾盛彊,猶見原恕,明府何慮?」於是夜逆作檄,明旦出城,遣吏齎迎。策便進軍,與歆相見,待以上賓,接以朋友之禮。孫盛曰:夫大雅之處世也,必先審隱顯之期,以定出處之分,否則括囊以保其身,泰則行義以達其道。歆既無夷、皓韜邈之風,又失王臣匪躬之操,故撓心於邪儒之說,交臂於陵肆之徒,位奪於一豎,節墮於當時。昔許、蔡失位,不得列於諸侯;州公實來,魯人以為賤恥。方之於歆,咎孰大焉!

Later [Sūn] Cè died [200]. Tàizǔ [Cáo Cāo] was at Guāndù, and memorialized Heaven’s Son to summon Xīn. Sūn Quán wanted to not send him, but Xīn said to [Sūn] Quán: “General, you have received the ruler’s orders, and are just starting to establish good relations with Lord Cáo, and your relations are not yet strong. If you send me to show your good intentions, General, would this not be beneficial for you? Now if you without reason keep me, it would be caring for a useless thing. This is not a good plan for you, General.”

後策死。太祖在官渡,表天子徵歆。孫權欲不遣,歆謂權曰:「將軍奉王命,始交好曹公,分義未固,使僕得為將軍效心,豈不有益乎?今空留僕,是為養無用之物,非將軍之良計也。」

[Sūn] Quán was pleased, and sent Xīn. The guests and old friends who sent him off numbered over a thousand, and presented him with several hundred gold. Xīn in all cases did not refuse, but secretly marked everything. When it was time to go, he gathered all the gifts, and said to his guests: “At first I could not refuse your intentions, gentlemen, but what I have received is too much. Note I have only one carriage for a long journey, and to secretly hide treasures is a crime. I hope you all will consider this.” Everyone accepted back their gifts, and admired his virtue.

權悅,乃遣歆。賓客舊人送之者千餘人,贈遺數百金。歆皆無所拒,密各題識,至臨去,悉聚諸物,謂諸賓客曰:「本無拒諸君之心,而所受遂多。念單車遠行,將以懷璧為罪,願賓客為之計。」眾乃各留所贈,而服其德。


Xīn arrived, was appointed Consultant Cadet, Advisor to the Army of the Excellency of Works, entered the Secretariat, transferred to Attendant Internal, and succeeded Xún Yù as Director of the Secretariat. When Tàizǔ led a campaign against Sūn Quán, he memorialized Xīn as Master of the Army. When Wèi state was established, he became its Censorate Grandee.

歆至,拜議郎,參司空軍事,入為尚書,轉侍中,代荀彧為尚書令。太祖征孫權,表歆為軍師。魏國既建,為御史大夫。

When Wén-dì [Cáo Pī] ascended as King [220], he was appointed State Chancellor [of Wèi] and given fief as Marquis of Ānlè village. At the ascension [of Wén-dì] he was transferred to Excellency over the Masses. (1)

文帝即王位,拜相國,封安樂鄉侯。及踐阼,改為司徒。〔一〕

  • (1) Wèishū states: When Wén-dì accepted the abdication, Xīn ascended the altar and faced him, presenting the seal and cord of the Emperor, and so completed the ceremony bestowing the Mandate.
  • Huà Jiào’s Pǔxù states: When Wén-dì received the abdication, the Court ministers from the Three Excellencies down all received noble title. Xīn due to his appearance of disobedience at the time was transferred to Excellency over the Masses but not advanced in noble title. Wèi Wén-dì was long displeased, and asked Director of the Secretariat Chén Qún: “I complied with Heaven and accepted the abdication, and among all the rulers and lords, none are not each pleased and happy, and show this in their voice and face. Yet the State Chancellor [Huà Xīn] and you sir alone are not pleased. Why is this?” Qún rose and left his seat and knelt, saying: “I your servant and the State Chancellor were previously ministers of the Hàn Court, so though our hearts are pleased, it is proper that to maintain this appearance [of displeasure]. Also we fear that if we are not honest with Your Majesty then we will be detested.” The Emperor was greatly pleased, and was again impressed with them.

〔一〕 魏書曰:文帝受禪,歆登壇相儀,奉皇帝璽綬,以成受命之禮。華嶠譜敘曰:文帝受禪,朝臣三公已下並受爵位;歆以形色忤時,徙為司徒,而不進爵。魏文帝久不懌,以問尚書令陳群曰:「我應天受禪,百辟群后,莫不人人悅喜,形于聲色,而相國及公獨有不怡者,何也?」群起離席長跪曰:「臣與相國曾臣漢朝,心雖悅喜,義形其色,亦懼陛下實應且憎。」帝大悅,遂重異之。

Xīn was often poor but upright, and when bestowed with gifts he distributed them to support his relatives and old friends, and his house did not have even a dàn [of grain] stored. The Excellencies and Ministers were once bestowed with women who had violated the law [to be servants], and only Xīn released them and married them off. The Emperor sighed in admiration (2), and sent down an imperial Order: “The Excellency over the Masses is a special elder of the state. What he does is in accordance with the ways of the world and will of the people. Now the great ministers eat sumptuous meals, but the Excellency over the Masses eats plain vegetables. There is nothing more to say.”

歆素清貧,祿賜以振施親戚故人,家無擔石之儲。公卿嘗並賜沒入生口,唯歆出而嫁之。帝歎息,〔二〕下詔曰:「司徒,國之雋老,所與和陰陽理庶事也。今大官重膳,而司徒蔬食,甚無謂也。」

  • (2) Sūn Shèng states: I have heard that to celebrate rewards and awe with punishment, one must have an exemplar as ruler, who properly forgives angers, and goes forth as a lord over men. When Zǐ Lù privately accepted food, Zhòngní [Confucius] destroyed his eating utensils. When the Tián clan usurped, the Chūnqiū wrote ridicule. These appraisals are already examples of righteousness. Families of the condemned are eliminated by state punishments. Households of the rewarded are esteemed by expansive gifts. If there is pity, the reasonable do not stray to forgiveness. Xīn occupied appointment as trusted aide. He was also valued by the head of state, and so spoke as Excellency in the Imperial Court. By the favor of Heaven he received rewards, but alone sought to play a superior gentlemen, both doing wrong by bringing fortune to criminals and by disobeying and certainly leaving justice. This can be said to be the benevolence of a coarse fellow, to approach principle and not yet reach it.
  • Wèishū states: Xīn by nature was careful and thorough, his actions detailed and cautious. He always believed that when an official explains problems, to tactfully remonstrate superiors with principle was most important. So in all that he said, he did not dare be obvious, and therefore many of his matters were often not recorded.
  • Huà Jiào’s Pǔxù states: Xīn had no desire for wealth, from beginning to end received favor and reward, reached all [three] Excellency positions, but to the end did not accumulate property. Chén Qún once sighed and said: “One like Lord Huà can communicate without being grand, be honest without being ambivalent.
  • Fùzǐ states: Dare one ask who are the superior gentlemen of the present? Answer: “Palace Cadet Yuán accumulates virtues in acting with frugality, Grand Commandant Huà [Xīn] accumulates virtue in residing in obedience. Their wisdom can be matched, but their integrity cannot be matched. They act with loyalty to the above, and judge with benevolence to the below. What more could Yàn Yīng or Xíngfù add to that?”

〔二〕 孫盛曰:盛聞慶賞威刑,必宗於主,權宜宥怒,出自人君。子路私饋,仲尼毀其食器;田氏盜施,春秋著以為譏。斯褒貶之成言,已然之顯義也。孥戮之家,國刑所肅,受賜之室,乾施所加,若在哀矜,理無偏宥。歆居股肱之任。同元首之重,則當公言皇朝,以彰天澤,而默受嘉賜,獨為君子,既犯作福之嫌,又違必去之義,可謂匹夫之仁,蹈道則未也。魏書曰:歆性周密,舉動詳慎。常以為人臣陳事,務以諷諫合道為貴,就有所言,不敢顯露,故其事多不見載。華嶠譜敘曰:歆淡於財欲,前後寵賜,諸公莫及,然終不殖產業。陳群常歎曰:「若華公,可謂通而不泰,清而不介者矣。」傅子曰:敢問今之君子?曰:「袁郎中積德行儉,華太尉積德居順,其智可及也,其清不可及也。事上以忠,濟下以仁,晏嬰、行父何以加諸?」

[Wén-dì] specially bestowed Imperial Robes [on Huà Xīn] and made special clothes for all of his wives and children, men and women. (3)

特賜御衣,及為其妻子男女皆作衣服。〔三〕

  • Wèishū states: He was again bestowed with maidservants, fifty people.

〔三〕 魏書曰:又賜奴婢五十人。

The Three Offices commented: “Nominating as Filial and Incorrupt was originally based on moral conduct, and should no longer be limited by testing knowledge of classics.”

三府議:「舉孝廉,本以德行,不復限以試經。」

Xīn believed: “Since the tragic disasters [of the fall of Hàn], study of the six classics has fallen and declined, and should by all means be supported and reestablished for the sake of benevolent rule. Those who are lawmakers are those who determine flourish or decline. Now if nominations of Filial and Incorrupt do not test knowledge of the Classics, one fears that study and scholarship will from then decline and fall. If there is someone exceptional and unusual [but who does not know the Classics], then they can still be appointed as a special case. What should be feared is that there are no such men. Why fear that they cannot be recruited?” The Emperor followed this suggestion.

歆以為「喪亂以來,六籍墮廢,當務存立,以崇王道。夫制法者,所以經盛衰。今聽孝廉不以經試,恐學業遂從此而廢。若有秀異,可特徵用。患於無其人,何患不得哉?」帝從其言。


During Huángchū [220-226], an Imperial Order asked the Excellencies and Ministers to advance reclusive superior gentlemen. Xīn recommended Guǎn Níng, and the Emperor sent a carriage to invite him.

黃初中,詔公卿舉獨行君子,歆舉管寧,帝以安車徵之。

When Míng-dì [Cáo Ruí] ascended [226], he was advanced to Marquis of Bópíng, with fief increased by 500 households, added to the previous to 1300 households, and transferred to Grand Commandant. (1)

明帝即位,進封博平侯,增邑五百戶,并前千三百戶,轉拜太尉。〔一〕

  • (1) Lièyì Zhuàn states: When Xīn was very young, he once lodged for the night outside the door [of a house]. The [house] owner’s wife in the night gave birth. Shortly afterward two mystics came to visit at the door. They opened [the door] but then drew back. They said to one another: “An Excellency is here.” They hesitated for a long time. One mystic said: “Now that it is decided, why do we stop?” Then they came forward and bowed to Xīn, and together entered. The left side by side, and together talked. [One] said: “How many years will it be?” The other man said: “It will be three years.” At dawn, Xīn left. Later, he wished to check the matter, and when it was three years, he went back to ask after the child, and indeed it had already died. Xīn then knew he would become an Excellency.
  • Your Servant Sōngzhī comments: What Jìnyángqiū says about Wèi Shū lodging when he was young was also like this. It is unlikely that there would be two people who would both experience this, and the compilers are different. Now it is better to trust Lièyì.

〔一〕 列異傳曰:歆為諸生時,嘗宿人門外。主人婦夜產。有頃,兩吏詣門,便辟易卻,相謂曰:「公在此。」躊躇良久,一吏曰:「籍當定,奈何得住?」乃前向歆拜,相將入。出並行,共語曰:「當與幾歲?」一人曰:「當三歲。」天明,歆去。後欲驗其事,至三歲,故往問兒消息,果已死。歆乃自知當為公。臣松之按晉陽秋說魏舒少時寄宿事,亦如之。以為理無二人俱有此事,將由傳者不同。今寧信列異。

Xīn claimed illness and asked to resign and yield his post to [Guǎn] Níng. The Emperor refused, called a great assembly, and sent Cavalier Regular Attendant Miào Xí to deliver an Imperial Order to announce to [Huà Xīn]: “We have newly taken over these many affairs, and in one day have ten thousand obligations, fearing that while making decisions [that I] will not understand [and act wrongly], and relying on virtuous ministers around Our person. Yet you sir repeatedly plead illness and resign your position. Those who appraised their ruler and chose their lord, who would not reside in this Court [as minister], who renounced glory and wealth, and who would not keep their positions; the ancient people indeed had such those persons. However Zhōu-gōng and Yī Yǐn did not agree with that. Keeping to oneself is what I expect of ordinary people, but not what I expect from you sir. You sir should use your strength to overcome illness and attend this assembly, as a kindness to my one person. I shall set up a seating mat and place [for you], and order all the officials to stand and wait with me, and only when you sir have arrived, will I then sit.”

歆稱病乞退,讓位於寧。帝不許。臨當大會,乃遣散騎常侍繆襲奉詔喻指曰:「朕新蒞庶事,一日萬幾,懼聽斷之不明。賴有德之臣,左右朕躬,而君屢以疾辭位。夫量主擇君,不居其朝,委榮棄祿,不究其位,古人固有之矣,顧以為周公、伊尹則不然。絜身徇節,常人為之,不望之於君。君其力疾就會,以惠予一人。將立席几筵,命百官總己,以須君到,朕然後御坐。」

[The Emperor] also gave an Imperial Order to [Miào] Xí: “You must wait until Xīn has risen and only then return.” Xīn could not but rise and go.

又詔襲:「須歆必起,乃還。」歆不得已,乃起。


During Tàihé [227-233], Cáo Zhēn was sent to follow the Wǔ road to attack Shǔ [230], while [the Imperial] Carriage went east to visit Xǔchāng.

太和中,遣曹真從子午道伐蜀,車駕東幸許昌。

Xīn sent up a memorial: “Since the turmoil of war began, there has already been two reigns. Our Great Wèi due to Heaven accepted the Mandate, and Your Majesty by your sagely virtue flourish as [Zhōu Kings] Chéng and Kāng. It is appropriate to be liberal in government for one generation, and continue the legacy of the three rulers. Though there are the two rebel [states Shǔ and Wú] that dangerously turn away from the Mandate, if you daily increase your sagely cultivation, the estranged men will cherish virtue, and then with their children on their back come. Use of troops is for when there is no alternative, and therefore we should be restrained and in time act. I your servant sincerely hope that Your Majesty will first be devote attention to the principles of government, and take military campaigns as a later affair. Moreover the transport of provisions over thousands of lǐ is not advantageous to the using of troops; the further into danger one penetrates, the more unlikely there is of success and achievement. If this year there is summons for conscription, it will disrupt the development of agriculture and silk culture. One who rules the state must to take the people as the base, and the people take clothes and food as their foundation. If the central states have no fear of hunger or cold, and the common people have no thought of leaving the land, then that is very fortunate for the world Under Heaven, and the conflict with the two rebels can be settled and dealt with. I your servant have position as your chief minister, my old age and illness daily become more severe, my ability to lead dogs and horses shall soon be exhausted, and I fear I will no longer be able to support and look upon the Imperial Canopy, so I do not dare not exhaust my duty as subject, and only hope Your Majesty will consider this!”

歆上疏曰:「兵亂以來,過踰二紀。大魏承天受命,陛下以聖德當成康之隆,宜弘一代之治,紹三王之跡。雖有二賊負險延命,苟聖化日躋,遠人懷德,將襁負而至。夫兵不得已而用之,故戢而時動。臣誠願陛下先留心於治道,以征伐為後事。且千里運糧,非用兵之利;越險深入,無獨克之功。如聞今年徵役,頗失農桑之業。為國者以民為基,民以衣食為本。使中國無饑寒之患,百姓無離土之心,則天下幸甚,二賊之釁,可坐而待也。臣備位宰相,老病日篤,犬馬之命將盡,恐不復奉望鑾蓋,不敢不竭臣子之懷,唯陛下裁察!」

The Emperor answered: “You sir deeply thought over plans for the state, and We greatly praise this. The rebels depend on the mountains and rivers, so though the two Founders [Cáo Cāo, Cáo Pī] labored in previous generations, they yet could not overcome and pacify them. How could I dare be overconfident in myself and say we will certainly destroy them? The generals believe if we do not at least try, then we are without reason harming ourselves, and therefore seek to use soldiers to watch the quarrel [for opportunity]. Because the proper time had not come, Zhōu led [his army] back. With this past example to reflect on, We respect and do not forget what you warn.”

帝報曰:「君深慮國計,朕甚嘉之。賊憑恃山川,二祖勞於前世,猶不克平,朕豈敢自多,謂必滅之哉!諸將以為不一探取,無由自弊,是以觀兵以闚其釁。若天時未至,周武還師,乃前事之鑒,朕敬不忘所戒。」

In the autumn there was heavy rain, and an Imperial Order summoned [Cáo] Zhēn to lead his army back.

時秋大雨,詔真引軍還。

Tàihé fifth year [231] Xīn died. His posthumous title was Jìng-hóu “Venerated Marquis.” (1) His son Biǎo succeeded.

太和五年,歆薨,諡曰敬侯。〔一〕子表嗣。

  • (1) Wèishū says that Xīn at that time was seventy-five years.

〔一〕 魏書云:歆時年七十五。

Previously, Wén-dì had divided Xīn’s fief to title Xīn’s younger brother Jī as a full Marquis. Biǎo during Xiánxī [264-265] was in the Secretariat. (2)

初,文帝分歆戶邑,封歆弟緝列侯。表,咸熙中為尚書。〔二〕

  • (2) Huà Jiào’s Pǔxù states: Xīn had three sons.
  • Biǎo appellation Wěiróng, at over twenty years became Cavalier Attendant Cadet. At the time his fellow ministers together followed Secretariat orders. He was young but also strict and had an aggressive attitude, and wished to gather up reputation. When Secretariat duties came, some were inconvenient, and so were overlooked and not checked, and those who passed on letters passed it on, and so the entering writings and discussions became mixed up. Only Biǎo disagreed. When duties came that were inconvenient, he at once with the Secretariat discussed matters to the end until he understood, was stubborn until managers had no choice, and afterwards together presented comments. Excellency of Works Chén Qún and others because of this praised him. After Jìn was established [265], he served as Junior Tutor to the Heir-Apparent and Minister of Ceremonies. He plead illness and retired, and was appointed Grandee Official. By nature he was pure and light, and often worried the world Under Heaven was abandoning reason. Excellency over the Masses Lǐ Yìn, Director of Retainers Wáng Hóng, and others once praised him: “A man like this, is not noble, is not lowly, is not close, is not far.
  • The second son Bó, served as internal clerk in three counties, and had a legacy of good government and fame.
  • The youngest son Zhōu was Yellow Gate Attendant Cadet Administrator of Chángshān, was widely learned and thoughtful in writing. In middle age he fell ill, and ended at home.
  • Biǎo had three sons. The eldest son was Yì, appellation Zhǎngjùn.
  • Jìnzhūgōngzàn states: Yì was skilled in writing, and served as Director of the Secretariat, Junior Tutor to the Heir-Apparent, and was posthumously Grandee Official opening government.
  • Jiào appellation Shūjùn had talent and learning, compiled a Hòuhànshū, which at the time was called a good history. He was appointed Confidential Document Supervisor, and to the Secretariat. Tán appellation Xuánjùn was the most famous, and was appointed Intendant of Hénán.
  • Yì had three sons. Kūn appellation Jìnglún was honest and pure and had restraint, and was appointed to the Secretariat. Huì appellation Jìngshū, was at the time praised as very noble and proper. Héng appellation Jìngzé for his communicability and reason was praised. Kūn was Secretariat, Huì was Intendant of Hénán, Héng was Left Grandee Official opening government.
  • Tán’s son Yì appellation Yànxià. He had talent and ambition at the time, and became Inspector of Jiāngzhōu.

〔二〕 華嶠譜敘曰:歆有三子。表字偉容,年二十餘為散騎侍郎。時同僚諸郎共平尚書事,年少,並兼厲鋒氣,要(君)〔召〕名譽。尚書事至,或有不便,故遺漏不視,及傳書者去,即入深文論駮。惟表不然,事來有不便,輒與尚書共論盡其意,主者固執,不得已,然後共奏議。司空(陳泰)〔陳群〕等以此稱之。仕晉,歷太子少傅、太常。稱疾致仕,拜光祿大夫。性清淡,常慮天下退理。司徒李胤、司隸(王密)〔王弘〕等常稱曰:「若此人者,不可得而貴,不可得而賤,〔不可得而親〕,不可得而疏。」中子博,歷三縣內史,治有名跡。少子周,黃門侍郎、常山太守,博學有文思。中年遇疾,終于家。表有三子。長子廙,字長駿。晉諸公贊曰:廙有文翰,歷位尚書令、太子少傅,追贈光祿大夫開府。嶠字叔駿,有才學,撰後漢書,世稱為良史。為祕書監、尚書。澹字玄駿,最知名,為河南尹。廙三子。昆字敬倫,清粹有檢,為尚書。薈字敬叔。世語稱薈貴正。恆字敬則,以通理稱。昆,尚書;薈,河南尹;恆,左光祿大夫開府。澹子軼,字彥夏。有當世才志,為江州刺史。

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