Zé Róng 笮融
Liú Jī 劉基 [Jìngyú 敬輿]
Liú Yáo, appellation Zhènglǐ, was a Dōnglái Mùpíng man. The youngest son of Xiào-wáng “Filial King” of Qí [the grandson of Liú Féi the son of Hàn Gāozǔ] was titled Marquis of Mùpíng, and his descendants formed that family. Yáo’s father’s elder brother Chǒng was a Hàn Grand Commandant. (1)
- (1) Xùhànshū states: Yáo’s grandfather Běn received education in the classics and had wide learning in many books, and was called the Continuing Classicist. He was nominated as worthy and upright, appointed Chief of Bān, and died in office. Chǒng styled Zǔróng inherited his father’s work, followed the classics in wise conduct and teaching, was nominated as Filial and Incorrupt, examined by the Grandee Officials as Four Conducts, and appointed Magistrate of Dōngpínglíng. He oversaw affairs for several years, then due to his mother’s illness resigned his office. The commoners and scholars and people crowded over his carriage and stopped the wheels, blocked up the roads, and the chariot could not advance, so he stopped, changed his clothes and secretly escaped, and returned to provide for his parents. Later he was enlisted in the staff of the General-in-Chief, and eventually transferred to Administrator of Kuàijī, was personally upright in leading subordinates, and within the commandery was greatly managed. He was summoned back to Court to become an Officer of Craftsmen. The people of Shānyīn county were several tens of lǐ away from the headquarters in a mountain valley, with five to six old men all over seventy and eighty. When they heard Chǒng was to be transferred, they led everyone to send off Chǒng, and the people presented a hundred cash. Chǒng met them, and consoled them and said: “Why did you elders make yourselves suffer by coming from so far away?” All answered: “The mountain valley rustic elders in their lives have never come to the commandery and county. In other times officials were sent out to harass the people and in the night there was unceasing barking of dogs, and so after dark the people had no peace. Ever since you wise governor descended the chariot and came, the dogs do not in the night bark, the officials rarely come among the people, and the elders enjoyed your sagely influence. Now we hear you are about to resign and leave, and so we have used up our strength to come send you off.” Chǒng thanked them, and accepted one large coin, so Kuàijī called Chǒng the One-Coin Administrator. His pure integrity was like this. Chǒng from beginning to end served in two commanderies, with eight to nine positions, four to three promotions in affairs. His household did not accept bribes, had no great treasures or tools, always had humble drink and food, meager clothing, simple chariot and lean horses, and so was called poor and humble. Three times he left position as minister, and at once returned to his home land. When he went and came from the capital territory, he always took lesser side roads with a few horses, so that none recognized him. Chǒng once wished to stop at a precinct, and the precinct official at where he stopped [not recognizing him] said: “We have made preparations to care for Lord Liú, so you cannot stop here.” Chǒng therefore continued on. His incorruptible and frugal nature was all of this sort. He died of age and illness at home.
Yáo’s elder brother Dài, styled Gōngshān was a Palace Attendant and an Inspector of Yǎnzhōu. (2)
- (2) Xùhànshū states: Yáo’s father Yú, originally named Fāng, was Administrator of Shānyáng. Dài and Yáo both had significant ability.
- Yīngxióngjì appraises Dài as filial and fraternal, benevolent and forgiving, acting modestly when personally receiving others.
When Yáo was aged nineteen years, his cousin’s father Wěi was captured by bandits as a hostage, but Yáo seized and brought him back, and by this gained reputation. He was nominated as Filial and Incorrupt, became a Cadet Internal, and was appointed Chief of Xiàyì. At the time the Prefecture Administrator because of his noble lineage entrusted him, so he resigned his post and left. He was enlisted by the provincial government and went to Jǐnán. The Chancellor of Jǐnán was a Palace Regular Attendant’s son, was greedy and corrupt and disobedient, so Yáo sent up a memorial to dismiss him.
Píngyuán’s Táoqiū Hóng recommended Yáo, and wished to urge he be nominated as Abundant Talent. The Inspector said: “The previous year [Yáo’s elder brother Liú Dài] Gōngshān was nominated, so why is Zhènglǐ also nominated?” Hóng said: “If you sir wisely use Gōngshān at the front and promote Zhènglǐ at the rear, that would be what is said to drive on two dragons on a long road, and urge elite stallions over a thousand leagues, is this not permitted?”
It happened that he was recruited to the office of the Excellency of Works, appointed Attendant to the Censorate, but he did not accept. He fled the chaos to Huáipǔ, and  a written Imperial Order appointed him Inspector of Yángzhōu.
At the time Yuán Shù resided south of the Huái. Yáo feared and hated him and did not dare [enter] the province [headquarters]. He wished to go south and cross the Jiāng, and Wú Jǐng and Sūn Bēn welcomed him to establish himself at Qū’ē.
[Yuán] Shù plotted to usurp and rebel, and attacked and seized all the prefectures and counties. Yáo sent Fán Néng and Zhāng Yīng to garrison on the bank of the Jiāng to resist him. Because [Wú] Jǐng and [Sūn] Bēn were employed by Shù he therefore drove them away and they fled. Therefore Shù then installed his own Inspector of Yángzhōu to join with Jǐng and Bēn to attack [Fán] Néng, [Zhāng] Yīng, and the rest, but after over a year they had not succeeded.
A Hàn order promoted Yáo to Governor [of Yángzhōu] and General Rousing Martiality, and his army numbered tens of thousands of men.  Sūn Cè crossed east, defeated Néng, Yīng, and the rest. Yáo fled to Dāntú (1), then up the Jiāng south to defend Yùzhāng, stationing at Péngzé.
- (1) Yuán Hóng’s Hànjì states: Liú Yáo wished to flee to Kuàijì. Xǔ [Shào] Zǐjiàng said: “Kuàijì is wealthy and [Sūn] Cè covets it. Moreover it is isolated by the sea, and cannot be escaped from. It is not as good as Yùzhāng. To the north it borders the land of Yù[zhōu], and to the west it connects with Jīngzhōu. If you gather up the officials and people, send an envoy to present tribute, and exchange communicate with Cáo [Cāo of] Yǎnzhōu, though Yuán [Shù] Gōnglù resides between you, that man is a ravenous wolf and cannot last. You sir have received Royal commands, and [Cáo Cāo] Mèngdé and [Liú Biǎo] Jǐngshēng must send relief.” Yáo followed this.
Zé Róng arrived first, killed the Administrator Zhū Hào (2), and entered to occupy the prefecture.
- (2) Xiàn-dì Chūnqiū states: That year, Yáo camped at Péngzé, and also sent [Zé] Róng to assist [Zhū] Hào to attack Liú Biǎo’s subordinate Administrator Zhūgě Xuán. Xǔ [Shào] Zǐjiàng said to Yáo: “Zé Róng has led the army out, but he is not one to be trusted. Zhū [Hào] Wénmíng is honest and sincere and trusts others, and you should send one to secretly warn him.” When Róng arrived, he indeed deceived and killed Hào, and replaced him in governing the prefecture affairs.
Yáo advanced and punitively attacked Róng but was defeated by Róng, but he again recruited and united all the counties, and attacked and defeated Róng. Róng was defeated and fled into the mountains, and was killed by the local peoples.  Yáo fell ill and died. At the time he was aged forty-two years.
Zé Róng was a Dānyáng man. First he gathered several hundred followers and went to join Governor of Xúzhōu Táo Qiān. Qiān sent him to supervise the canal supply lines in Guǎnglíng and Péngchéng, but then he acted without restraint and without authority killed, occupied and intercepted the supply lines of three prefectures and took it for himself.
Then he greatly built a Buddhist shrine, building [statues of] men from bronze, covered the bodies in yellow gold, dressed them in multicolored embroidery, with bronze mirrors on each of the nine floors [of the tower], with the lowest floor of the tower able to hold over three thousand people. All studied and recited Buddhist Scriptures, and he ordered that all Buddhists within the borders or in neighboring commanderies come receive instruction, and also other conscripts were recruited, and these, far and near and from beginning to end, were over five thousand households. At every washing of the Buddhas, large amounts of drink and food were laid out on mats by the road, stretching several lǐ, and the people who came to see and eat were some ten thousand people, and the costs were enormous and utterly incalculable.
When Excellency Cáo attacked Táo Qiān, the land of Xú was in upheaval. Róng commanded ten thousand men and women and three thousand horses, fled to Guǎnglíng, and the Administrator of Guǎnglíng Zhào Yù treated with the courtesy due to a guest. Before this, Chancellor of Péngchéng Xuē Lǐ was oppressed by Táo Qiān, and camped at Mòlíng. Róng sought to take the armies of Guǎnglíng for himself, so he murdered [Zhào] Yù while [Yù] was drunk [at a banquet], let the troops greatly plunder, taking the gains and leaving. Afterward he killed [Xuē] Lǐ, and then he killed [Zhū] Hào.
Later [Sūn] Cè went west to attack Jiāngxià, and when he returned he past Yùzhāng, received Yáo’s coffin and mourned him, and treated his family well.
Wáng Lǎng left Cè a letter: “Liú Zhènglǐ in the past when he first oversaw the province, he could not extend his reach himself, so he relied on your honored family [Wú Jǐng and Sūn Bēn] to advance himself, in order to cross the Jiāng and establish his government, and so gained a place to settle himself. He entered the borders with courtesy, with emotion had the intentions of making ties, and was grateful to the end from the beginning. Later he was suspected by Yuán [Shù], and so gradually ties weakened, and so previous allies became enemies. Fundamentally in his heart, he was truly not happy to do this. After peace returned, he always hoped to again change these circumstances, and return to friendly relations. But as you were separated, his intentions could not be shown, and he suddenly died, and this was painfully regrettable! I know you use kindheartedness to face indifference, virtue to repay resentment, have received his bones and care for his orphans, mourning the departed and pitying the remaining, casting aside past suspicions, and protecting [his orphans]. This is truly deeply gracious and magnanimous and worthy of great reputation of generosity. In the past though the people of Lǔ had reason to resent Qí, they did not destroy their records of mourning, and the Chūnqiū praised this, said this was in accordance with courtesy, and truly was what good historians should record, and what village educators should sigh [in admiration] when they year. Zhènglǐ’s first son has great ambition and moral integrity, and will surely be unique and remarkable. Your authority is flourishing and you wield power to give punishment, and if bestow your favor [upon him], would not be even more exceptional?”
Yáo’s eldest son Jī, appellation Jìngyú. Aged fourteen years, he undertook mourning for Yáo to the full extent of the rites, and when officials made offerings, all of these he would not accept. (1)
- (1) Wúshū states: Jī encountered many difficulties and suffered great hardships, but though submerged in all this he did not give in to grief. He lived with his younger brothers, always in the night resting away and rising up early, and the wives and concubines all hoped to see his face. His younger brothers respected and feared him, and in managing affairs he was like his father. He did not rashly make acquaintances, and in his house there were no strange guests.
His appearance was very good, and Sūn Quán favored and respected him. When Quán became General of Elite Cavalry, he was recruited to the East Official Department, appointed Colonel Assisting Justice and Internal Gentleman-General Establishing Loyalty. When Quán became King of Wú, Jī was promoted to Minister of Agriculture.
Once when Quán was at a banquet drinking, Cavalry Commandant Yú Fān became drunk and was disobedient, and Quán wished to kill him, and his anger was deep and powerful, but Jī remonstrated him and by this Fān escaped.
Quán, when it was very hot, once held a drinking banquet on a boat, and the boat encountered a thunderstorm. Quán had a canopy to shelter himself, and also ordered Jī be sheltered, and the remaining men could not obtain [shelter]. He met with favor like this.
He was transferred to Director of Cadet Internals. When Quán took Imperial Title, he was changed to Minister of Merits, and shared in managing Secretariat Affairs. Aged forty-nine years he died. Later Quán had his son Bà wed Jī’s daughter, bestowed a first tier residence, and in all four seasons bestowed favors, comparable to the Quán and Zhāng families. Jī’s younger brothers Shuò and Shàng both became Cavalry Commandants.