(27.1) Xú Miǎo 徐邈 [Jǐngshān 景山]

Xú Miǎo, appellation Jǐngshān, was a Yān-guó Jì man. When Tài-zǔ [Cáo Cāo] pacified Héshuò, he was summoned to serve as a planning official in the Army of the Chancellor, tested with defense as Magistrate of Fènggāo, and entered Court as Commentator Official in the East Bureau. When the state of Wèi was first established [213] he was appointed Secretariat Cadet. At the time there was a prohibition against alcohol, but Miǎo privately drank it and became very intoxicated. Investigative Officer Zhào Dá inquired into his government affairs, and Miǎo said: “I am a sage.” Dá reported this to Tài-zǔ and Tài-zǔ was extremely angry. General Crossing the Liáo Xiānyú Fǔ argued: “Those who often drink, when drunk, call pure wine as a ‘sage’ and unfiltered wine as a ‘saint.’ Miǎo by nature is prudent. This is only drunken nonsense and that is all.” As a result he escaped punishment. Later he was given office as Administrator of Lǒngxī, then transferred to Nán’ān.

徐邈字景山,燕國薊人也。太祖平河朔,召為丞相軍謀掾,試守奉高令,入為東曹議令史。魏國初建,為尚書郎。時科禁酒,而邈私飲至於沈醉。校事趙達問以曹事,邈曰:「中聖人。」達白之太祖,太祖甚怒。度遼將軍鮮于輔進曰:「平日醉客謂酒清者為聖人,濁者為賢人,邈性脩慎,偶醉言耳。」竟坐得免刑。後領隴西太守,轉為南安。


After Wén-dì [Cáo Pī] ascended [220], he successively served as Chancellor of Qiáo, Administrator of Píngyáng and Ānpíng, Internal Gentleman-General of Agriculture in Yǐngchuān, and in all places he was renowned, and titled Marquis within the Passes. When the Imperial Carriage visited Xǔchāng, [the Emperor] asked Miǎo: “Are you still a sage?”

文帝踐阼,歷譙相,平陽、安平太守,潁川典農中郎將,所在著稱,賜爵關內侯。車駕幸許昌,問邈曰:「頗復中聖人不?」

Miǎo replied: “In the past Zǐfǎn was ruined [by drink] at Gǔyáng, and Yùshū was punished for drinking wine. I your servant enjoy [drinking] like these two, and cannot restrain myself, and so always return to it. But while Sùliú was remembered as disgraceful, I your servant for my drinking receive favor.”

邈對曰:「昔子反斃於穀陽,御叔罰於飲酒,臣嗜同二子,不能自懲,時復中之。然宿瘤以醜見傳,而臣以醉見識。」

The Emperor laughed greatly, and said to his attendants: “His reputation is not undeserved.” He was promoted to Master of the Army to the General-in-Chief Supporting the Army.

帝大笑,顧左右曰:「名不虛立。」遷撫軍大將軍軍師。


Míng-dì [Cáo Ruì], because Liángzhōu was far away and to the south bordered the Shǔ rebels, appointed Miǎo as Inspector of Liángzhōu and sent him with a Staff of Authority as Colonel Protecting the Qiāng. When he arrived, it happened that Zhūgě Liàng set out from Qíshān [228] and the three commanderies about Lǒngyòu rebelled. Miǎo immediately sent the Military Advisor and Administrator of Jīnchéng and others to attack the rebels at Nán’ān, and defeated them.

明帝以涼州絕遠,南接蜀寇,以邈為涼州刺史,使持節領護羌校尉。至,值諸葛亮出祁山,隴右三郡反,邈輒遣參軍及金城太守等擊南安賊,破之。

West of the [Yellow] River there was little rain, and there were often the hardships of food shortages. Miǎo memorialized to repair the salt pans of Wǔwēi and Jiǔquán and capture the enemy grain, and also built canals and farm fields, recruited poor people to develop them, and so all families had more than enough and the granaries were filled to overflowing. Thereafter a portion was withdrawn from the surplus military use to purchase metal, silk, dogs, horses, and supply for the expenditures of the central states. Private ownership of weapons was also gradually reduced and moved to storage in government storehouses. Afterward he preached on benevolence and justice, established schools and teaching, prohibited extravagant burial, ended excessive sacrifices, advanced the good and removed the evil, and so public morals greatly improved and the common people willingly submitted. Communication was restored with the Western Regions, and the Huāng and Róng presented tribute. This were all the achievements of Miǎo.

河右少雨,常苦乏穀,邈上脩武威、酒泉鹽池以收虜穀,又廣開水田,募貧民佃之,家家豐足,倉庫盈溢。乃支度州界軍用之餘,以市金帛犬馬,通供中國之費。以漸收斂民閒私仗,藏之府庫。然後率以仁義,立學明訓,禁厚葬,斷淫祀,進善黜惡,風化大行,百姓歸心焉。西域流通,荒戎入貢,皆邈勳也。

He put down the rebellion of the Qiāng [leader] Kēwú and served with distinction, was given fief as Marquis of Dū precinct with 300 households, and promoted to General Establishing Authority.

討叛羌柯吾有功,封都亭侯,邑三百戶,加建威將車。

Miǎo in his dealings with the Qiāng and Hú peoples did not inquire into small transgressions; if the crime was very great, he would first inform the tribal leaders, and only after they were informed of the condemned criminal would he behead and expose, and so his authority was respected and feared. All the rewards he was bestowed with he distributed to his officers and soldiers, and none of it entered his house, and his wife and children did not have enough food or clothing. Heaven’s Son heard and praised him, and so provided for his family. He struck down the wrong and restrained the unjust, and all within the borders were secure.

邈與羌、胡從事,不問小過;若犯大罪,先告部帥,使知,應死者乃斬以徇,是以信服畏威。賞賜皆散與將士,無入家者,妻子衣食不充;天子聞而嘉之,隨時供給其家。彈邪繩枉,州界肅清。


Zhèngshǐ Inaugural Year [240] he returned [to Court] as Minister of Agriculture. He was transferred to Colonel-Director of Retainers. All the officials respected and feared him. Because of public matters he resigned office. Later he became Merit Grandee, and several years later he was appointed Excellency of Works [248]. Miǎo sighed and said: “The Three Excellencies are officials who discuss the way, and if there is no suitable men the posts are vacant. How can a shameful sick and old man [like me be appointed]?” Therefore he resigned and would not accept.

正始元年,還為大司農。遷為司隸校尉,百寮敬憚之。公事去官。後為光祿大夫,數歲即拜司空,邈歎曰:「三公論道之官,無其人則缺,豈可以老病忝之哉?」遂固辭不受。

Jiāpíng Inaugural Year [249], he was aged seventy-eight years, and as a great official died at home. He was buried with the honors of an Excellency, with posthumous title as Mù-hóu “Solemn Marquis.” His son Wǔ succeeded.

嘉平元年,年七十八,以大夫薨于家,用公禮葬,諡曰穆侯。子武嗣。

Sixth year [254], the Court made memorial of the honest and great officials [of the past]. An Imperial Order said: “Worthy sages are those who demonstrate virtue and are valued by sagely Kings. They recommend the good to educate others, and have the goodness of Zhòngní [Confucius]. Former Excellency of Works Xú Miǎo, General Attacking the East Hú Zhì, and Minister of the Guard Tián Yù each held office in the previous Court [of Míng-dì], served successively for four generations, went out commanding troops and horses, came in to assist in government, were loyal to the public good, so anxious for the state as to forget private concerns, did not hoard personal wealth, so that after they were gone their households had no excess wealth. We are deeply impressed with them, and so bestow on the households of Miǎo and others two thousand hú of grain, three hundred thousand coins. So announced to all Under Heaven.”

六年,朝廷追思清節之士,詔曰:「夫顯賢表德,聖王所重;舉善而教,仲尼所美。故司空徐邈、征東將軍胡質、衛尉田豫皆服職前朝,歷事四世,出統戎馬,入贊庶政,忠清在公,憂國忘私,不營產業,身沒之後,家無餘財,朕甚嘉之。其賜邈等家穀二千斛,錢三十萬,布告天下。」

Hán Guàn of the same prefecture as Miǎo traveled far, had integrity and ability, and was of equal fame with Miǎo, and before the birth of Sūn Lǐ and Lú Yù was inspector of Yùzhōu. He had many merits in government, and died in office. (1)

邈同郡韓觀曼游,有鑒識器幹,與邈齊名,而在孫禮、盧毓先,為豫州刺史,甚有治功,卒官。〔一〕

  • (1) Wèi Míngchén Zòu records Yellow Gate Attendant Official Dù Shù‘s Memorial, which says: “Hán Guàn and Wáng Chǎng are honest and multi-talented, had high office and heavy responsibilities in not only three provinces.”

〔一〕 魏名臣奏載黃門侍郎杜恕表,稱:「韓觀、王昶,信有兼才,高官重任,不但三州。」

Lú Qīn wrote a book and said of Miǎo: “Excellency Xú had lofty ambitions and noble conduct. His ability was extensive and his spirit ferocious. In his management, he was noble and not rash, pure and not following [bad examples], widely learned and keeping of promises, ferociously decisive but capable of leniency. Sages believe to act purely is difficult, but for Excellency Xú it was easy.”

盧欽著書,稱邈曰:「徐公志高行絜,才博氣猛。其施之也,高而不狷,絜而不介,博而守約,猛而能寬。聖人以清為難,而徐公之所易也。」

Someone said to Qīn: “Excellency Xú in the time of Wǔ-dì was believed by men to be ordinary, but after he was at Liángzhōu and returned to the capital, men believed he was special. Why was this?”

或問欽:「徐公當武帝之時,人以為通,自在涼州及還京師,人以為介,何也?」

Qīn answered: “Previously Máo [Jiè] Xiàoxiān [SGZ 12] and Cuī [Yǎn] Jìguī [SGZ 12] and the rest were in charge of affairs, and they esteemed the honest and pure gentlemen, so at the time everyone changed their carriages and clothes [to plain ones] to try to claim a high reputation, but Excellency Xú did not change his ways, so people thought he was ordinary. Later the world Under Heaven became extravagant, and everyone changed direction [in their behavior], but Excellency Xú again acted as before, not following the common customs. Therefore what was ordinary yesterday became special today. This is because the people of the times are fickle, while Excellency Xú was unchanging.”

欽答曰;「往者毛孝先、崔季珪等用事,貴清素之士,于時皆變易車服以求名高,而徐公不改其常,故人以為通。比來天下奢靡,轉相倣效,而徐公雅尚自若,不與俗同,故前日之通,乃今日之介也。是世人之無常,而徐公之有常也。」

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s