Xiàhóu Yuān, appellation Miàocái, was [Xiàhóu] Dūn’s younger third cousin. When Tàizǔ [Cáo Cāo] was residing at home, there was an incident with the county government, and Yuān took the blame on his behalf, but Tàizǔ rescued him, and so they escaped. (1)
- (1) Wèilüè states: At the time Yǎn and Yù [provinces] were in great disorder. Yuān because of famine and [food] shortages, abandoned his young son to save the life of his deceased younger brother’s orphaned daughter.
When Tàizǔ raised troops, he followed as Separate Command Major and Cavalry Commandant, transferred to Administrator of Chénliú and Yǐngchuān.
When they battled with Yuán Shào at Guāndù, he was Acting Commandant Supervising the Army. When Shào was defeated, he was sent to manage Yǎn, Yù, and Xúzhōu’s military provisions. At the time the army’s food was sparse, and Yuān sent food in quick succession, and the army because of this was again strengthened.
Chāng Xǐ rebelled. Yú Jīn was sent to attack him, but was not yet successful, so Yuān was also sent to reinforce Jīn, and so they attacked Xǐ, receiving the surrender of over ten of his camps, and Xǐ went to Jīn to surrender. Yuān returned, and was appointed Colonel Managing the Army. (2)
- (2) Wèishū states: When Yuān became an officer, he moved incredibly quickly, often going out and catching the enemy by surprise, and therefore in the army it was said: “ Colonel Managing the Army Xiàhóu Yuān in three days covers five hundred [lǐ], six days one thousand [qiān; this is a rhyming couplet].”
Jǐnán and Lè’ān Yellow Scarves Xú Hé, Sīmǎ Jù, and others besieged cities, killing the Chief Clerk. Yuān commanded the Tàishān, Qí, and Píngyuán commandery soldiers to attack, greatly defeated them, beheading Hé, pacifying all the counties, capturing their provisions and distributing it to the army soldiers.
Fourteenth year , Yuān was Acting Military Supervisor. Tàizǔ campaigned against Sūn Quán and returned, and sent Yuān to command the various officers to attack the Lújiāng rebel Léi Xù, and Xù was defeated. He was made Acting Protector of the Army Attacking the West, supervising Xú Huǎng in attacking Tàiyuán bandits, capturing over twenty camps, beheading bandit commander Shāng Yào and slaughtering his city. He followed in the campaign against Hán Suì and the rest, and fought south of the Wèi [river]. He supervised Zhū Líng in pacifying the Yúmí and Qiān Dī [tribes]. He rejoined Tàizǔ at Āndìng, receiving the surrender of Yáng Qiū.
Seventeenth year  Tàizǔ then returned to Yè, and Yuān was appointed Acting General Protecting the Army, with command over Zhū Líng, Lù Zhāo, and others to garrison Cháng’an, attack and destroy the Nánshān bandit Liú Xióng and receive the surrender of his army. He besieged Suì’s and Chāo’s remnant ally Liáng Xīng at Hù, dislodged them, beheaded Xīng, and so was given fief as Marquis of Bóchāng precinct.
Mǎ Chāo besieged Inspector of Liángzhōu Wéi Kāng at Jì. Yuān went to rescue Kāng, but before he arrived, Kāng was defeated. He was over two hundred lǐ from Jì when Chāo came to oppose and battle, and [Xiàhóu Yuān’s] army was unsuccessful. The Qiān Dī tribes rebelled, and Yuān led the army back.
Nineteenth year  Zhào Qú, Yǐn Fèng, and others plotted to attack Chāo, and Jiāng Xú raised troops at Lǔchéng to support them. Qú and the others deceitfully persuaded Chāo to go out and attack Xú, and afterward killed all of Chāo’s wives and children. Chāo fled to Hànzhōng, then returned to besiege Qíshān. Xú and the rest urgently requested help. All the officers and commentators believed only Tàizǔ could settle this. Yuān said: “The Excellency is at Yè, four thousand lǐ there and back. By the time this is reported, Xú and the rest will already be defeated. This is not how to deal with an emergency.”
Therefore he went, sending Zhāng Hé to command five thousand infantry and cavalry at the front, following the Chéncāng narrow road, while Yuān personally supervised supplies at the rear. Hé arrived by the Wèi river, and Chāo commanded several thousand Dī and Qiāng to oppose Hé. Before open battle, Chāo fled, and Hé advanced the army and captured Chāo’s military equipment. Yuān arrived, and the various counties had all already surrendered.
Hán Suì was at Xiǎnqīn, and Yuān wished to attack and capture him, but Suì fled. Yuān captured Suì’s army provisions, pursued to Lüèyáng city. When over twenty lǐ away from Suì, the officers wished to attack him, but some said they should first attack the Xīngguó Dī tribes. Yuān believed: “Suì’s troops are elite, and Xīngguó is fortified and defended, so attacking will not be successful. It is better to attack Zhǎnglí’s various Qiāng. Many of the various Qiāng of Zhǎnglí are in Suì’s army, and will certainly desert to rescue their families. If the Qiāng alone defend they will be isolated, and those rescuing Zhǎnglí will battle the government troops and will certainly be captured.”
Yuān therefore remained to defend the heavy supply wagons, and sent light infantry and cavalry to Zhǎnglí, attacking and burning the Qiāng camps, beheading and capturing a great many. All the Qiāng in Suì’s army each returned to their tribes. Suì indeed went to rescue Zhǎnglí, and faced Yuān’s army. All the officers saw Suì’s army and was concerned, and wished to return to camp and build defenses and only then battle. Yuān said: “We have already struggled over a thousand lǐ. Now if we return to build fortifications and moats, then our men and army will be exhausted and cannot last. Though the rebels are numerous, they can easily be dealt with and that is all.”
Therefore he beat the drums, and greatly defeated Suì’s army, capturing their flags and banners, returning to Lüèyáng, and advancing to besiege Xīngguó. The Dī King Qiān Wàn fled to Mǎ Chāo, while his remaining followers surrendered. He turned to attack the Gāopíng Túgè, and all scattered and fled, so capturing their provisions and grain and oxen and horses. Thereupon Yuān received Acting Staff of Authority.
Previously, Sòng Jiàn of Fūhǎn because Liángzhōu was in chaos proclaimed himself King of the [Yellow] River’s Source Pacifying Hàn. Tàizǔ sent Yuān to command the various officers to attack Jiàn. Yuān arrived, besieged Fūhǎn, and after over a month overcame him, beheading Jiàn and his appointed officials from the Chancellor down. Yuān separately sent Zhāng Hé and others to pacify Héguān, crossing the river to Xiǎohuángzhōng, all the Qiāng west of the [Yellow] River surrendered, and all west of Lǒng [mountain] was pacified.
Tàizǔ sent down an order: “Sòng Jiàn created disorder and rebelled for over thirty years. Yuān in one move destroyed him. Like a tiger he crossed west of the Passes, advancing on without match. Zhòngní once said: ‘I am not your equal.’”
Twenty-first year , his fief was increased by 300 households, adding to the previous to a total of 800 households. He returned to attack the Wǔdū Dī and Qiāng and settle their quarrels, capturing from the Dī over ten thousand hú of grain. Tàizǔ led a western campaign against Zhāng Lǔ, and Yuān and the others led all of Liángzhōu’s Generals, Lords, and Kings down to meet with Tàizǔ at Xiūtíng. Every time Tàizǔ met with a Qiāng or Hú, each because of Yuān was terrified of him. When [Zhāng] Lǔ surrendered, Hànzhōng was pacified, and Yuān was appointed Acting General of Regional Defense with command over Zhāng Hé, Xú Huǎng, and others to pacify Bā-jùn. Tàizǔ returned to Yè, leaving Yuān to defend Hànzhōng, and appointed Yuān General Attacking the West.
Twenty-third year , Liú Bèi’s army entered Yángpíng pass. Yuān sent the officers to resist him, and they faced one another and defended through the year.
Twenty-fourth year  first moon, Bèi in the night set fire to the camp barricades. Yuān sent Zhāng Hé to defend the eastern side, and personally led light troops to defend the southern side. Bèi advanced and battled Hé, and Hé’s army was unsuccessful. Yuān divided his troops and sent half to assist Hé, but was attacked by Bèi. Yuān therefore died in battle. His posthumous title was Mǐn-hóu “Martyred Marquis.”
Previously, though Yuān had won many battles, Tàizǔ once warned him: “As a General there are times when one is weak, and cannot rely on personal courage alone. A General may use valor as a foundation, but must have wisdom and strategy. If one knows only valor, one can be matched by an ordinary fellow and that is all.”
Yuān’s wife was Tàizǔ‘s wife’s younger sister. His eldest son Héng wed Tàizǔ‘s yougner brother Āi-hóu “Tragic Marquis” of Hǎiyáng’s daughter, and received special favor. Héng inherited title, and was transferred to Marquis of Ānníng precinct.
During Huángchū [220-226], title was bestowed on the second son Bà. During Tàihé [227-238] title was bestowed on Bà’s four younger brother, all as Marquis Within the Passes. Bà during Zhèngshǐ [240-249] was appointed General of the Right Protecting the Army Attacking Shǔ, and was advanced in fief to Marquis of Bóchāng precinct, and always received generous favor from Cáo Shuǎng. When he heard Shuǎng had been executed, he was suspicious of his own position, and fled to Shǔ. Because of Yuān’s former achievements, Bà’s sons were pardoned and moved to Lèlàngjùn. (1)
- (1) Wèilüè states: [Xiàhóu] Bà appellation Zhòngquán. Yuān was killed by Shǔ, and so Bà often gnashed his teeth in anger and had thoughts of revenge against Shǔ. During Huángchū [220-226] he became Assistant-General. In the Zǐwǔ campaign, Bà asked to lead the front, advanced to the Xīngshì border, and set camp within the Qū valley. The Shǔ people saw and knew it was Bà and sent down troops to attack him. Bà personally fought at the barricades until reinforcements arrived and then withdrew. Later he became General of the Right, stationed at Lǒngxī, and there cared for soldiers and made peace with the Róng, both obtaining their pleased hearts. During Zhèngshǐ [240-249] he succeeded Xiàhóu Rú as [General] Protecting the Army Attacking Shǔ, under the command of [the General] Attacking the West. At the General Attacking the West Xiàhóu Xuán was Bà’s cousin’s son, and also Cáo Shuǎng’s younger cousin. When Sīmǎ [Yì] Xuān-wáng executed Cáo Shuǎng, he then summoned Xuán, and Xuán returned east. Bà heard Cáo Shuǎng had been executed and Xuán had been also been summoned, and believed disaster would come next, and in his heart was terrified. Also, Bà had previously been unfriendly with Inspector of Yōngzhōu Guō Huái, and Huái had replaced Xuán as [General] Attacking the West. Bà was exceedingly disturbed, and therefore fled to Shǔ. He hurried south to Yīnpíng but lost the road, entered Qióng valley, exhausted his supplies, killed his horse and traveled on foot. His leg was broken and he lied down beneath a cliff rock. He sent people to find the way, but none knew where it was. Shǔ heard of this, and therefore sent people to welcome Bà. Previously, in Jiàn’ān fifth year , at the time Bà’s younger female cousin was aged thirteen to fourteen years, at her home commandery, went out to collect firewood, and was kidnapped by Zhāng Fēi. Fēi knew she was the daughter of a good family, and so made her his wife. She bore a daughter, who became Liú Shàn’s Empress. Previously when Yuān was killed, Fēi’s wife asked to bury him. When Bà entered Shǔ, [Liú] Shàn met with him, and explained to him: “Your father himself came to harm in the past and that is all, not by my father’s own hand and blade.” [Liú Shàn] pointed at his son and presented him, saying: “This is the Xiàhóu family’s maternal side descendant.” Therefore [Xiàhóu Bà] received generous title and favor.
Bà’s younger brother Wēi reached office as Inspector of Yǎnzhōu. (2)
- (2) Shìyǔ states: Wēi appellation Jìquán. He was chivalrous, and served as Inspector of Jīng and Yǎn, two provinces. His son Jùn was Inspector of Bìngzhōu. The next [son] Zhuāng was Administrator of Huáinán. Zhuāng’s son Zhàn, appellation Xiàoruò, was talented and extensive in writings, and reached Chancellor of Nányáng and Scattered Cavalry Regular Attendant. Zhuāng was Jìn’s Empress Jǐng-Yáng‘s older sister’s husband. Because of this the whole household received extravagant favor at the time.
Wēi’s younger brother Huì was Administrator of Lè’ān. (3)
- (3) Wénzhāng Xùlù states: Huì appellation Zhìquán. From a young age for his talent and learning he met praise, and was skilled in presenting memorials and commentary. He served as Scattered Cavalry Yellow Gate Attendant-Gentleman, frequently debated with Zhōng Yù, and in many affairs met supporters. He was transferred to Chancellor of Yān and Administrator of Lè’ān. Aged thirty-seven years he died.
Huì’s younger brother Hé was Intendant of Hénán. (4)
- (4) Shìyǔ states: Hé appellation Yìquán. In Pure Debate he had skill and ability. He served as Intendant of Hénán and Minister of Ceremonies.
- Yuān’s third son was Chēng and fifth son was Róng. Their cousin’s grandson Zhàn wrote of them: “Chēng appellation Shūquán. From a young age he enjoyed gather together other children, became their commander, and played as if leading an army to battle, and if there were disobedient ones they were whipped, so that in the group none dared resist. Yuān was secretly very impressed, and sent him to study the Xiàng Yǔ Zhuàn and military texts, but he refused, saying: ‘Ability is inborn and that is all. How can it be learned from others?’ At age sixteen years, Yuān and he were in a field, and they met a fleeing tiger. Chēng urged his horse on and pursued it and would not be stopped, and with one arrow shot it down. His reputation reached Tàizǔ, and Tàizǔ took his hand and happily said: “I finally have someone like you!” He befriended Wén-dì [Cáo Pī] in plain clothes [when they were commoners], and at every banquet they sat together, and in debate they could not be surpassed. At the time many people of renown came to follow him. At age eighteen years he died. His younger brother was Róng, appellation Yòuquán. From a young age he was intelligent, and aged seven years could write prose, and read aloud books with several thousand words every day, and all that he saw he memorized. Wén-dì heard of this and invited him. Out of over a hundred guests, each presented a [name] card, each written with their home town, name, and clan. At the time this was what was called the noble card. The guests showed these, and with one glance he could converse with them, never mixing up a single person. The Emperor was deeply impressed with him. At the defeat at Hànzhōng, Róng was aged thirteen years. His attendants tried to carry him away, but he would not agree, saying: “My father is in danger, how can I flee from death!” Therefore he wielded sword and fought, and so died in battle.
Héng died, and his son Jì succeeded, and became Gentleman-General of the Palace Tiger Guard. Jì died, and his son Bāo succeeded.
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