(37.2) Fǎ Zhèng 法正 [Xiàozhí 孝直]

Fǎ Zhèng appellative Xiàozhí was a Fúfēng Méi man. His grandfather [Fǎ] Zhēn had pure integrity and high reputation. (1)

法正字孝直,(右)扶風郿人也。祖父真,有清節高名。〔一〕

  • (1) Sānfǔ Juélùzhù “Three Adjutants Daily Records Annotations” states: [Fǎ] Zhēn appellation Gāoqīng, when young understood the Five Classics, and also knew divination, studied without a permanent teacher, and had reputation for high ability. Once he wore plain headscarf to meet the Administrator of Fūféng. The Administrator said: “Though [Lǔ] Āi-gōng was not worthy yet he had for a subject Zhòngní [Confucius]. Liǔ Xiàhuì did not leave the country of his parents. I wish to borrow you as a Merit Officer, how about it?” [Fǎ] Zhēn said: “Because from you wise governor I have met with treatment with courtesy, therefore I have always come to pay respects. But if you wish to make me an official to send me as envoy, I will then be north of the northernmost mountains and south of the southernmost mountains.” The Administrator of Fúfēng therefore did not dare take him as an official. Previously, [Fǎ] Zhēn had not yet been capped, his father was at Nán-jùn, he walked to visit his father. He wished to go, but his father kept him there to stay for the New Year, and had him watch how the officials gathered together. The gathered were several hundred people, and [Fǎ] Zhēn through a window watched them talk with his father. When it was finished, he asked [Fǎ] Zhēn: “Who there was worthy?” [Fǎ] Zhēn said: “Official Hú Guǎng has ability to be among the Excellency and Ministers.” Later [Hú] Guǎng indeed held rank in the Nine Ministers and Three Excellencies, and the generation admired [Fǎ] Zhen’s understanding of people. From beginning to end he was recruited, but always he did not accept, and his friends Guō Zhèng and others praised him, calling him Mister Xuándé “Mysterious Virtue.” Aged eighty-nine years, Zhōngpíng fifth year [188], he died.
  • Zhèng’s father Yǎn appellation Jìmóu, was an official to the Excellency over the Masses, and Left Supervisor to the Minister of Justice.

〔一〕 三輔決錄注曰:真字高卿,少明五經,兼通讖緯,學無常師,名有高才。常幅巾見扶風守,守曰:「哀公雖不肖,猶臣仲尼,柳下惠不去父母之邦,欲相屈為功曹何如?」真曰:「以明府見待有禮,故四時朝覲,若欲吏使之,真將在北山之北南山之南矣。」扶風守遂不敢以為吏。初,真年未弱冠,父在南郡,步往候父,已欲去,父留之待正旦,使觀朝吏會。會者數百人,真於窗中闚其與父語。畢,問真「孰賢」?真曰:「曹掾胡廣有公卿之量。」其後廣果歷九卿三公之位,世以服真之知人。前後徵辟,皆不就,友人郭正等美之,號曰玄德先生。年八十九,中平五年卒。正父衍,字季謀,司徒掾、廷尉左監。

At Jiàn’ān’s beginning [196] the realm Under Heaven was in famine and desoluation, Zhèng with Mèng Dá of the same commandery together entered Shǔ to join Liú Zhāng, for a long time was Magistrate of Xīndū, and afterward was summoned to serve as Military Commentator Colonel. Since he was not well appointed, and also was by other refugees and guests from the same province and village slandered as without moral conduct, his ambitions were suppressed.

建安初,天下饑荒,正與同郡孟達俱入蜀依劉璋,久之為新都令,後召署軍議校尉。既不任用,又為其州邑俱僑客者所謗無行,志意不得。

Yìzhōu Aide-de-Camp Zhāng Sōng with Zhèng were friendly with each other, speculated that [Liú] Zhāng was too lacking to be successful, and often secretly sighed. [Zhāng] Sōng at Jīngzhōu met Excellency Cáo and returned, and urged [Liú] Zhāng to cut off with Excellency Cáo and instead ally with Xiānzhǔ [Liú Bèi]. [Liú] Zhāng said: “Who can be sent as envoy?” [Zhāng] Sōng then recommended Zhèng, Zhèng declined, but could not but go. When Zhèng returned, he said to [Zhāng] Sōng that Xiānzhǔ had heroism and planning, they conspired to join him, hoping to together invite him, but did not yet have an opportunity. Later because [Liú] Zhāng heard Excellency Cáo wished to send Generals to campaign against Zhāng Lǔ had a terrified heart, and [Zhāng] Sōng therefore persuaded [Liú] Zhāng that they should welcome Xiānzhǔ, to employ him to suppress [Zhāng] Lǔ, and again order Zhèng to send the message.

益州別駕張松與正相善,忖璋不足與有為,常竊歎息。松於荊州見曹公還,勸璋絕曹公而自結先主。璋曰:「誰可使者?」松乃舉正,正辭讓,不得已而往。正既還,為松稱說先主有雄略,密謀協規,願共戴奉,而未有緣。後因璋聞曹公欲遣將征張魯之有懼心也,松遂說璋宜迎先主,使之討魯,復令正銜命。

After Zhèng announced the message, he secretly suggested to Xiānzhǔ: “With your outstanding talent wise General, taking advantage of Governor Liú [Zhāng]’s weakness, and Zhāng Sōng, the province’s trusted aide, to respond from the inside, therefore capitalizing on Yìzhōu’s prosperity, and the abundant land’s rugged geography, with this you can achieve your enterprise, as easily as turning a hand.” Xiānzhǔ agreed with this, going up the Jiāng west, and with [Liú] Zhāng met at Fú. They went north to Jiāméng, then returned south to capture [Liú] Zhāng.

正既宣旨,陰獻策於先主曰:「以明將軍之英才,乘劉牧之懦弱;張松,州之股肱,以響應於內;然後資益州之殷富,馮天府之險阻,以此成業,猶反掌也。」先主然之,泝江而西,與璋會涪。北至葭萌,南還取璋。


Zhèng Dù said to [Liú] Zhāng (1): “General of the Left leads county armies to attack us, his troops are not even ten thousand, and the people are not attached to him, the grain in the fields is their supplies, and they have no heavy supply wagons. Of the plans for this none are better than to completely evacuate Bāxī and Zǐtóng’s people within the Fú river’s west, burn all of their granaries and fields, use high walls and deep moats, and hold position to resist them. When they arrive and seek battle, do not respond, and eventually they will lose their supplies, and without passing a hundred days they will inevitably flee. When they flee and we strike them, then they can certainly be taken.”

鄭度說璋曰:〔一〕「左將軍縣軍襲我,兵不滿萬,士眾未附,野穀是資,軍無輜重。其計莫若盡驅巴西、梓潼民內涪水以西,其倉廩野穀,一皆燒除,高壘深溝,靜以待之。彼至,請戰,勿許,久無所資,不過百日,必將自走。走而擊之,則必禽耳。」

Xiānzhǔ heard and feared this, and asked Zhèng. Zhèng said: “To the end it will not be used, there is nothing to worry about.” [Liú] Zhāng indeed was as Zhèng said, saying to his subordinates: “I have heard of fighting the enemy in order to calm the people, but never of disrupting the people the avoid the enemy.” Therefore he dismissed [Zhèng] Dù and did not use his plan.

先主聞而惡之,以問正。正曰:「終不能用,無可憂也。」璋果如正言,謂其群下曰:「吾聞拒敵以安民,未聞動民以避敵也。」於是黜度,不用其計。

When the army besieged Luòchéng, Zhèng wrote to [Liú] Zhāng: “I by nature lack skill, completed the alliance arrangements but came to disobey you, and fear your attendants will not understand the true reasons, and will certainly place all the blame on me, but I can be disgraced to my end, and in disgrace carry on my duties, and therefore debase myself out here, and do not dare turn from my path. I feared your holiness will hear filth and evil in these sounds, and therefore in the meantime did not send letter or alarm, but thinking back to how I was treated, looking ahead I think this is not to late. Therefore from beginning to end I reveal my innermost thoughts, from the earliest all the way to the latest, I truly did not hide any emotions, and though sometimes I did not do my utmost, yet I never had any secret plans, only my good faith was not recognized, and so it came to this and that is all. Now that state’s affairs are already critical, disaster coming quickly, and though I am serving outside, and my words easy to be greatly hated, yet I have something I wish to share, to use my remaining loyalty. Wise General, your true heart, I know well, and truly it is not wanting to lose the General of the Left’s good relations, but that it ended like this, is because your attendants do not understand the way to follow and serve heroes, saying that one can violate faith and blacken vows, and instead respond to the situation, as the sun and moon shift, hurriedly seeking to please your ears and eyes, and therefore flatter and fawn, and so do not plan long term with thorough calculations for the state. The incident has already happened, and also they do not judge strength and weakness, believing the General of the Left’s army is far from home with no provisions or grain stored, and wish to mostly hold back many and rarely strike, and pass the days locked together. But in fact coming from the pass to here, all in the way has been defeated, all the separate strongholds and division garrisons have themselves withered and fallen. Though below Luò there are ten thousand troops, they are all beaten soldiers, Generals of defeated armies, and if you wish to fight a decisive battle, then your troops and generals in their strength are truly no match. All your planners plan to outlast our provisions, but now these strongholds are already taken, and grain and rice is already gathered, while your territory Wise General is daily lost, the common people daily suffer, so your enemies then increase, and your supporters grow distant and few. I humbly have considered all this, and say you will certainly be finished first, and so should not again believe in outlasting us. You can in vain defend against us, but cannot last against us. Now Zhāng [Fēi] Yìdé’s army of tens of thousands, has already settled Bādōng, entered Qiánwèi’s borders, with divisions pacifying Zīzhōng and Déyáng as they invade by three distant roads, and how can you resist this? Currently your planners, Wise General, are certainly saying that this army is far from home without provisions, their food supply lines falling short, their troops few without followers. Now Jīngzhōu’s roads are connected, incoming armies increase tenfold, and moreover [General of] Chariots and Cavalry Sūn [Quán] sends his younger brother with Lǐ Yì, Gān Níng, and others to follow after. If you wish to compare with this master’s power, then in considering the one with greater territory, now this side has Bādōng, Guǎnghàn, Qiánwèi, so over half has already been settled, while the one commandery of Bāxī is also not what you Wise General can hold. So it can be judged that Yìzhōu relies only on Shǔ [commandery], but Shǔ is already defeated and ruined; two thirds are lost, officials and people are destitute, and those thinking of rebelling against you are eight out of ten households; if the enemy is distant then the common people cannot endure your conscription, if the enemy is near then in one morning we will have changed who is the master. Guǎnghàn’s various counties are a clear example. Also Yúfù and Guāntóu are truly the gateways deciding Yìzhōu’s success or ruin, and now the two gates are both open, your strongest cities are all fallen, your various armies all broken, your soldiers and Generals all used up, while your enemy by several roads advance, already enter into the province’s heart and guts, while you sit and defend [Chéng]dū and Luò, and whether you succeed or perish can already clearly be seen. This is only the big picture, of what is happening outside and that is all, the rest is confused and difficult to speak of completely. If someone as lowly as me can yet know this situation cannot be turned into success, all the more for the wise strategic thinkers in your attendants Wise General, how can they not see this situation? From dawn to discuss they cheat your favor, seeking good appearances to flatter, not thinking of the long term plan, none able to devote all their hearts to present a good strategy and that is all. If the situation comes to the utmost urgency, then each will save their own lives, seek to rescue their own families, change their allegiances back and forth, and will be different from their present plans, and not go with you Wise General to death and disaster, but your honored household would yet receive what they fear. Though I have already been slandered as disloyal, yet my heart says to myself that I do not turn back against your holiness’s virtue. Only when looking back to my separate mission, I am truly grieved. The General of the Left from when he first came, his old heart has regretted leaving, and truly he has no unkind intentions. I humbly believe you can change your plans, in order to save your honored household.”

及軍圍雒城,正牋與璋曰:「正受性無術,盟好違損,懼左右不明本末,必並歸咎,蒙恥沒身,辱及執事,是以損身於外,不敢反命。恐聖聽穢惡其聲,故中間不有牋敬,顧念宿遇,瞻望悢悢。然惟前後披露腹心,自從始初以至於終,實不藏情,有所不盡,但愚闇策薄,精誠不感,以致於此耳。今國事已危,禍害在速,雖捐放於外,言足憎尤,猶貪極所懷,以盡餘忠。明將軍本心,正之所知也,實為區區不欲失左將軍之意,而卒至於是者,左右不達英雄從事之道,謂可違信黷誓,而以意氣相致,日月相遷,趨求順耳悅目,隨阿遂指,不圖遠慮為國深計故也。事變既成,又不量彊弱之勢,以為左將軍縣遠之眾,糧穀無儲,欲得以多擊少,曠日相持。而從關至此,所歷輒破,離宮別屯,日自零落。雒下雖有萬兵,皆壞陳之卒,破軍之將,若欲爭一旦之戰,則兵將勢力,實不相當。各欲遠期計糧者,今此營守已固,穀米已積,而明將軍土地日削,百姓日困,敵對遂多,所供遠曠。愚意計之,謂必先竭,將不復以持久也。空爾相守,猶不相堪,今張益德數萬之眾,已定巴東,入犍為界,分平資中、德陽,三邈道侵,將何以禦之?本為明將軍計者,必謂此軍縣遠無糧,饋運不及,兵少無繼。今荊州道通,眾數十倍,加孫車騎遣弟及李異、甘寧等為其後繼。若爭客主之勢,以土地相勝者,今此全有巴東,廣漢、犍為,過半已定,巴西一郡,復非明將軍之有也。計益州所仰惟蜀,蜀亦破壞;三分亡二,吏民疲困,思為亂者十戶而八;若敵遠則百姓不能堪役,敵近則一旦易主矣。廣漢諸縣,是明比也。又魚復與關頭實為益州福禍之門,今二門悉開,堅城皆下,諸軍並破,兵將俱盡,而敵家數道並進,已入心腹,坐守都、雒,存亡之勢,昭然可見。斯乃大略,其外較耳,其餘屈曲,難以辭極也。以正下愚,猶知此事不可復成,況明將軍左右明智用謀之士,豈當不見此數哉?旦夕偷幸,求容取媚,不慮遠圖,莫肯盡心獻良計耳。若事窮勢迫,將各索生,求濟門戶,展轉反覆,與今計異,不為明將軍盡死難也。而尊門猶當受其憂。正雖獲不忠之謗,然心自謂不負聖德,顧惟分義,實竊痛心。左將軍從本舉來,舊心依依,實無薄意。愚以為可圖變化,以保尊門。」

  • (1) Huà Yáng’s Guózhì states: [Zhèng] Dù was a Guǎnghàn man, and became a Provincial Advisor.

〔一〕 華陽國志曰:度,廣漢人,為州從事。


Nineteenth year, they advanced to besiege Chéngdū, [Liú] Zhāng’s Administrator of Shǔ-jùn Xǔ Jìng was about leave the city to surrender, the matter was discovered, and unsuccessful. [Liú] Zhāng because danger was so near therefore did not execute [Xǔ] Jìng. When [Liú] Zhāng bowed in submission, Xiānzhǔ because of this thought little of [Xǔ] Jìng and did not employ him. Zhèng said: “The world Under Heaven has those with empty reputation but no real ability, and Xǔ Jìng is one. But now your honor has newly begun a great enterprise, and cannot explain things to the realm’s people household by household, while [Xǔ] Jìng’s hollow reputation has spread across the Four Seas, and if you are disrespectful, the realm’s people will because of it say that your honor does not value the worthy. It is proper to be deeply respectful, to impress the distant and near, just as in the past the King of Yān treated Guō Wěi.” Xiānzhǔ therefore generously treated [Xǔ] Jìng. (1)

十九年,進圍成都,璋蜀郡太守許靖將踰城降,事覺,不果。璋以危亡在近,故不誅靖。璋既稽服,先主以此薄靖不用也。正說曰:「天下有獲虛譽而無其實者,許靖是也。然今主公始創大業,天下之人不可戶說,靖之浮稱,播流四海,若其不禮,天下之人以是謂主公為賤賢也。宜加敬重,以眩遠近,追昔燕王之待郭隗。」先主於是乃厚待靖。〔一〕

  • (1) Sūn Shèng states: Respecting worthies and esteeming virtue is the important path of statecraft, honoring tombs and visiting gates were they standards of past rulers. Therefore one must take as example the outstanding and profound, of high righteousness dominating the age, and then afterward one can long overlook the Four Seas, and shake and rule over the multitudes. If it is not such a man, the way cannot be falsely followed. [Xǔ] Jìng in the household to his kinsman was not reverent, going out was appointed where he did not belong, in speaking of his faith he was quick to change his heart in facing danger, in discussing his intelligence he entered danger in his first action. How could he be given foremost favor in order to move others? If then the false and superficial are esteemed, unfairly taking this glory, then for truly upright and righteous men, with what courtesy are they to be treated with? Zhèng used a method to confuse matters, was of the air to violate the noble and esteemed, gave the example of Guō Wěi, wronging natural human relations.
  • Your Servant Sōngzhī believes Guō Wěi was not worthy but for his ability in planning received favor, and moreover [Xǔ Jìng] Wénxiū’s reputation was already established, and the realm Under Heaven said he was outstanding and great, and though in his final years had blemishes, yet the matter was not obvious and clear. If he did not receive courtesy, how would it be explained to the confused far and near? Fǎ Zhèng in comparing [Xǔ] Jìng to [Guō] Wěi, was not inappropriate, but [Sūn] Shèng in making things difficult by citing honoring tombs and visiting gates, how pedantic! If that were the case, then even Yān Zhāo[-wáng] would also be wrong, how would it only be Old Liú [Bèi]? As for not reverent to his kinsman, the fault was with [Xǔ Shào] Zǐjiāng. From looking at the discussion of Jiǎng Jì, one can know it was not [Xǔ Jìng] Wénxiū’s fault. [Sūn] Shèng also ridiculed him as appointed where he did not belong, this was speaking of his service due to Dǒng Zhuó. When [Dǒng] Zhuó first gained controlled the government, he recruited all the worthy and talented, and those that received office and rank were all awe-inspiring like this. [Xǔ Jìng] Wénxiū was selected as an official before [Dǒng] Zhuó had arrived. Later he was promoted to Palace Deputy, and did not exceed this. If this is to be disparaged, then the sort as Xún Shuǎng and Chén Jǐ should all be rejected in their times.

〔一〕 孫盛曰:夫禮賢崇德,為邦之要道,封墓式閭,先王之令軌,故必以體行英邈,高義蓋世,然後可以延視四海,振服群黎。苟非其人,道不虛行。靖處室則友于不穆,出身則受位非所,語信則夷險易心,論識則殆為釁首,安在其可寵先而有以感致者乎?若乃浮虛是崇,偷薄斯榮,則秉直仗義之士,將何以禮之?正務眩惑之術,違貴尚之風,譬之郭隗,非其倫矣。臣松之以為郭隗非賢,猶以權計蒙寵,況文休名聲夙著,天下謂之英偉,雖末年有瑕,而事不彰徹,若不加禮,何以釋遠近之惑乎?法正以靖方隗,未為不當,而盛以封墓式閭為難,何其迂哉!然則燕昭亦非,豈唯劉翁?至於友于不穆,失由子將,尋蔣濟之論,知非文休之尤。盛又譏其受(任)〔位〕非所,將謂仕於董卓。卓初秉政,顯擢賢俊,受其策爵者森然皆是。文休為選官。在卓未至之前,後遷中丞,不為超越。以此為貶,則荀爽、陳紀之儔皆應擯棄於世矣。

Zhèng was appointed Administrator of Shǔ-Jùn and General Raising Martial Ability, outside governing the capital territory and inside serving as chief strategist. From the kindness of one meal to the evil of a glance, none did he not pay back, and without authority he killed those who harmed him, several people. Someone said to Zhūgě Liàng: “Fǎ Zhèng in Shǔ-jùn has too much control. General you should inform our lord [Liú Bèi] to restrain his power and fortune.” [Zhūgě] Liàng answered: “When our lord was at Gōng’ān, to the north he feared Lord Cáo’s power, to the east he feared Sūn Quán’s pressure. and nearby he feared Lady Sūn would cause rebellion right under his armpit. At that time, both advancing and retreating was blocked by wolves, but Fǎ Xiàozhí served as his assisting wings, allowing him to suddenly soar up high, so that he would never again be restrained. How can we forbid Fǎ Zhèng from doing as he wishes!”

以正為蜀郡太守、揚武將軍,外統都畿,內為謀主。一湌之德,睚眥之怨,無不報復,擅殺毀傷己者數人。或謂諸葛亮曰:「法正於蜀郡太縱橫,將軍宜啟主公,抑其威福。」亮答曰:「主公之在公安也,北畏曹公之彊,東憚孫權之逼,近則懼孫夫人生變於肘腋之下;當斯之時,進退狼跋,法孝直為之輔翼,令翻然翱翔,不可復制,如何禁止法正使不得行其意邪!」

Previously, Sūn Quán wed his younger sister to Xiānzhǔ. She was capable and fast with strong fierceness, resembled her elder brothers, was attended by over a hundred maidservants, all personally wielding sabers while standing in attendance. Every time Xiānzhǔ entered, his whole heart was always shivering in fear. [Zhūgě] Liàng also knew that Xiānzhǔ greatly loved and trusted Zhèng, and therefore spoke like this. (2)

初,孫權以妹妻先主,妹才捷剛猛,有諸兄之風,侍婢百餘人,皆親執刀侍立,先主每入,衷心常凜凜;亮又知先主雅愛信正,故言如此。〔二〕

  • (2) Sūn Shèng states: Power and fortune to the inferior is the path to destroying families and harming the state. Punishments being undone due to favor is the origin of ruined government and confused judgment. How can someone for being an accomplished minister have utmost lack of restraint, for being a favorite infringe upon state power? Therefore though Diān Xié was diligent he did not escape the punishment for disobedience, though Yáng Gān was a relative, yet was killed for rebellious conduct. How was that because of lack of love? It was because it was the ruler’s law. Mister Zhūgě’s speech therefore fails in governance and authority.

〔二〕 孫盛曰:夫威福自下,亡家害國之道,刑縱於寵,毀政亂理之源,安可以功臣而極其陵肆,嬖幸而藉其國柄者哉?故顛頡雖勤,不免違命之刑,楊干雖親,猶加亂行之戮,夫豈不愛,王憲故也。諸葛氏之言,於是乎失政刑矣。


Twenty-second year [217], Zhèng said to Xiānzhǔ: “Cáo Cāo in one moved subdued Zhāng Lǔ, settled Hànzhōng, but did not follow up on this momentum to plan to take Bā and Shǔ, and instead left Xiàhóu Yuān and Zhāng Hé to garrison and defend while personally hurriedly returning north; this is not because his wisdom is not farsighted or his strength insufficient, but certainly because the interior has a concern or pressure and that is all. Now considering [Xiàhóu] Yuān’s and [Zhāng] Hé’s ability and planning, they do not surpass those of our state’s Generals and commanders. If we raise armies to go suppress them, then we can certainly overcome them. The day we overcome them, we can expand agriculture and accumulate grain, look for gaps and openings, at best we can overthrow our enemy and restore the Ruling Household, at middling we can nibble away at Yōng and Liáng to expand our border territory, and at worst we can firmly defend strategic points, to plan for enduring long. This is what Heaven has given us, and the opportunity cannot be lost.” Xiānzhǔ liked this plan, and therefore led the various Generals to advance troops to Hànzhōng, and Zhèng also followed and went.

二十二年,正說先主曰:「曹操一舉而降張魯,定漢中,不因此勢以圖巴、蜀,而留夏侯淵、張郃屯守,身遽北還,此非其智不逮而力不足也,必將內有憂偪故耳。今策淵、郃才略,不勝國之將帥,舉眾往討,則必可克。(之克)〔克之〕之日,廣農積穀,觀釁伺隙,上可以傾覆寇敵,尊獎王室,中可以蠶食雍、涼,廣拓境土,下可以固守要害,為持久之計。此蓋天以與我,時不可失也。」先主善其策,乃率諸將進兵漢中,正亦從行。

Twenty-fourth year [219] Xiānzhǔ from Yángpíng crossed south over the Miǎn river, followed the mountains to gradually advance, and at Dìngjūn and Xīngshì built camp. [Xiàhóu] Yuān led troops to contest the territory. Zhèng said: “[We] can strike.” Xiānzhǔ ordered Huáng Zhōng to climb high and beat drums and attack them, greatly defeating [Xiàhóu] Yuān’s army, taking the heads of [Xiàhóu] Yuān and others.

二十四年,先主自陽平南渡沔水,緣山稍前,於定軍、興勢作營。淵將兵來爭其地。正曰:「可擊矣。」先主命黃忠乘高鼓譟攻之,大破淵軍,淵等授首。

Excellency Cáo campaigned west, heard Zhèng’s strategy, and said: “I originally knew [Liú Bèi] Xuándé could not have planned this, and this must have been someone else’s teaching.” (1)

曹公西征,聞正之策,曰:「吾故知玄德不辦有此,必為人所教也。」〔一〕

  • (1) Your Servant Sōngzhī believes Shǔ and Hànzhōng are like lips and teeth. Ruler Liú’s wisdom, how can it not think of that? Supposing the plans were not yet enacted, then Zhèng only started it and that is all. One who listens to and uses excellent strategists to accomplish achievements is a master among hegemons, who can not be that way? Wèi [Cáo Cāo] believed it was another’s teaching, how lowly! This was excess words of shame and disgrace, not proper words of true judgement.

〔一〕 臣松之以為蜀與漢中,其由唇齒也。劉主之智,豈不及此?將計略未展,正先發之耳。夫聽用嘉謀以成功業,霸王之主,誰不皆然?魏武以為人所教,亦豈劣哉!此蓋恥恨之餘辭,非測實之當言也。


[219] Xiānzhǔ was enthroned as King of Hànzhōng, and appointed Zhèng as Director of the Secretariat and General Protecting the Army. The next year he died, at the time aged forty-five years. Xiānzhu wept and sobbed for him for several days. Posthumous name Yì-hóu “Assisting Marquis.” His son Miǎo was bestowed with rank as Marquis Within the Passes, and his office reached Presenting Chariots Colonel and Administrator of Hànyáng.

先主立為漢中王,以正為尚書令、護軍將軍。明年卒,時年四十五。先主為之流涕者累日。諡曰翼侯。賜子邈爵關內侯,官至奉車都尉、漢陽太守。

Zhūgě Liàng and Zhèng, though their values were not the same, could admire each other’s righteousness. [Zhūgě] Liàng was always impressed with Zhèng’s wisdom and ability.

諸葛亮與正,雖好尚不同,以公義相取。亮每奇正智術。

When Xiānzhǔ had just taken Imperial Title, and was about to campaign east against Sūn Quán to avenge the disgrace of Guān Yǔ, most of the officials remonstrated, but he would not listen to a single one. Zhāngwǔ second year [222], the main army was heavily defeated, and returned to station at Báidì. [Zhūgě] Liàng sighed and said: “if Fǎ Xiàozhí were still here, then he would have been able to hold back our ruler, and have him not go east, but even if we had gone east, then it certainly would not have been this much of a disaster.” (1)

先主既即尊號,將東征孫權以復關羽之恥,群臣多諫,一不從。章武二年,大軍敗績,還住白帝。亮歎曰:「法孝直若在,則能制主上,令不東行;就復東行,必不傾危矣。」〔一〕

  • (1) Xiānzhǔ struggled with Lord Cáo, was in bad position, and should have retreated, but Xiānzhǔ was greatly furious and would not permit retreat, and none dared remonstrate him. Arrows came down like rain, and Zhèng therefore went in front of Xiānzhǔ. Xiānzhǔ said: “Xiàozhí, you need to avoid the arrows.” Zhèng said: “You wise lord are personally facing arrows and stones, so why not a petty man like me?” Xiānzhǔ therefore said: “Xiàozhí, you and I will go together.” Therefore they retreated.

〔一〕 先主與曹公爭,勢有不便,宜退,而先主大怒不肯退,無敢諫者。矢下如雨,正乃往當先主前,先主云:「孝直避箭。」正曰:「明公親當矢石,況小人乎?」先主乃曰:「孝直,吾與汝俱去。」遂退。

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