Chéng Bǐng, appellation Déshū, was a Rǔnán Nándùn man. He followed [the teachings of] Zhèng Xuán, afterward fled the chaos to Jiāozhōu, with Liú Xī researched and discussed the Great Meaning [of the Classics], and so mastered the Five Classics. Shì Xiè appointed him Chief Clerk. [Sūn] Quán heard of his reputation as Classicist, and politely summoned and recruited him. When he arrived, he was appointed Grand Tutor to the Heir-Apparent.
Huángwǔ fourth year , Quán had the Heir-Apparent Dēng wed Zhōu Yú’s daughter. Bǐng served as Minister of Ceremonies to welcome the consort to Wú. Quán personally boarded Bǐng’s boat, such was the exceptional courtesy he received.
When he returned, Bǐng calmly came forward to speak to Dēng: “Marriage is the beginning of human relationships and the foundation of governance and teaching. Therefore sagely Kings heavily value it, and so take the lead [as an example] to all the common people, to civilize the world Under Heaven. That is why the Shī[jīng]’s beautiful [poem] “Guān Jū” is placed at the front. I hope that you, Heir-Apparent shall honor the Rites and Teachings in the lady’s quarters and remember the songs of the Zhōu Nán, so that principles may bring prosperity to those above, and that there will be songs of praise composed by those below.”
Dēng laughed and said: “I shall obey the good and correct the evil, just as you have taught, my Tutor.”
He fell ill and died in office. He wrote Zhōuyì Zhāi, Shàngshū Bó, Lúnyǔ Bì totaling over thirty thousand words. When Bǐng was Tutor, Magistrate of Lǜgēng Zhēng Chóng of Hénán was also diligent in his studies and established writings on conduct. (1)
- (1) Wúlù states: Chóng appellation Zǐhé. He studied the Yì[jīng] and Chūnqiū Zuǒshì Zhuàn, and was also skilled in internal medicine. He was originally surnamed Lǐ, but in fleeing the chaos he changed his surname and then went into hiding in Kuàijī, and personally farming to support himself. Those who respected him sought to study under him. Those he taught did not exceed several people and always no more, but those that did receive his instruction all became successful. Those he communicated with included Chancellor Bù Zhì and others, and he was close with all of them. Yán Jùn recommended Chóng as behaved enough of strict customs and learned enough to be a teacher. When he first met the Heir-Apparent Dēng, because of illness he was given the privilege not to bow. All the officials in the Eastern Palace [of the Heir-Apparent] consulted and followed his advice. The Heir-Apparent several times inquired about his special reputation. At age seventy years he died.