(24.3) Gāo Róu 高柔 [Wénhuì 文惠]

Gāo Róu appellation Wénhuì was a Chénliú Yǔ man. His father [Gāo] Jìng was a Shǔjùn Commandant. (1)

高柔字文惠,陳留圉人也。父靖,為蜀郡都尉。〔一〕

Róu remained in his hometown, and said: “Now heroes together rise up, Chénliú is a land surrounded on four sides by battle. Although General Cáo [Cāo] occupies Yǎnzhōu, by nature he has plans in all four directions, and will not calmly sit and defend. But administrator Zhāng [Miǎo]’s foremost wishes are with Chénliú, and I fear there will be changes between them, and wish to with you sirs escape them.” Everyone all believed Zhāng Miǎo with Tàizǔ were friendly, and Róu also was young, so they did not agree with his words.

柔留鄉里,謂邑中曰:「今者英雄並起,陳留四戰之地也。曹將軍雖據兗州,本有四方之圖,未得安坐守也。而張府君先得志於陳留,吾恐變乘閒作也,欲與諸君避之。」眾人皆以張邈與太祖善,柔又年少,不然其言。

Róu’s elder cousin [Gāo] Gàn was Yuán Shào’s sister’s son, (2) from the Hé’s north called Róu, and Róu led his clan to join him.

柔從兄幹,袁紹甥也,〔二〕在河北呼柔,柔舉宗從之。

It happened that [Gāo] Jìng died in the western province. At the time the roads were dangerous, soldiers plundered unhindered, but Róu braved the perils to visit Shǔ to escort the coffin, working hard through great suffering, with nothing he did not experience, and after three years he returned.

會靖卒於西州,時道路艱澀,兵寇縱橫,而柔冒艱險詣蜀迎喪,辛苦荼毒,無所不嘗,三年乃還。

  • (1) Chénliú Qíjiù Zhuàn states: [Gāo] Jìng’s great-great-grandfather [Gāo] Gù would not serve Wáng Mǎng’s reign, was by the Administrator of Huáiyáng killed, and for his ardent integrity had great reputation. [Gāo] Gù’s son [Gāo] Shèn, appellation Xiàofǔ was genuine and honest, and had deep capability. He fostered his elder brother’s orphaned sons of five people, his kindness and righteousness deeply sincere. Chancellor of Lǎngyé Hé Yīng praised his conduct, and gave his daughter to wed him. [Hé] Yīng was General of Chariots and Cavalry [Hé] Xī’s father. [Gāo] Shèn successively was Magistrate of two counties, Administrator of Dōnglái. For old age and illness he returned home, a thatched hut, his pots without any stores. His wife said to him: “You were a administrator for many years, how could you not have stored things to leave for your descendants?” [Gāo] Shèn said: “I take industrious body and pure reputation as my foundation, leaving a two thousand dàn [level office] for them, cannot that also suffice?” His son [Gāo] Shì was utmostly filial, always exhausting effort to provide [for his parents]. During Yǒngchū, locusts caused harm, but alone did not eat [Gāo] Shì’s grain, and Stable Director Zhōu Qiáng memorialized this to the province and prefecture. Administrator Yáng Shùn recommended [Gāo] Shì as a filial son, but he declined and did not go. Later as a Filial and Incorrupt candidate he became a Cadet. The next son [Gāo] Chāng, and [Gāo] Chāng’s younger brother [Gāo] Cì both were Inspectors and prefecture Administrators. [Gāo] Shì’s son [Gāo] Hóng was a Filial and Incorrupt candidate. [Gāo] Hóng begat [Gāo] Jìng.

〔一〕 陳留耆舊傳曰:靖高祖父固,不仕王莽世,為淮陽太守所害,以烈節垂名。固子慎,字孝甫。敦厚少華,有沈深之量。撫育孤兄子五人,恩義甚篤。琅邪相何英嘉其行履,以女妻焉。英即車騎將軍熙之父也。慎歷二縣令、東萊太守。老病歸家,草屋蓬戶,甕缶無儲。其妻謂之曰:「君累經宰守,積有年歲,何能不少為儲畜以遺子孫乎?」慎曰:「我以勤身清名為之基,以二千石遺之,不亦可乎!」子式,至孝,常盡力供養。永初中,螟蝗為害,獨不食式麥,圉令周彊以表州郡。太守楊舜舉式孝子,讓不行。後以孝廉為郎。次子昌,昌弟賜,並為刺史、郡守。式子弘,孝廉。弘生靖。

  • (2) Xiè Chéng’s Hòuhànshū states: [Gāo] Gàn appellation Yuáncái, had talent and ambition great and profound, civil and military ability refined and exceptional. His father [Gāo] Gōng was a Shǔjùn Administrator. His grandfather [Gāo] Cì was a Colonel Director of Retainers.
  • According to Chénliú Qíjiù Zhuàn and Xiè Chéng’s writings, [Gāo] Gàn should be Róu’s cousin’s father, not his cousin. It is unknown which is in error.

  〔二〕 謝承後漢書曰:幹字元才。才志弘邈,文武秀出。父躬,蜀郡太守。祖賜,司隸校尉。案陳留耆舊傳及謝承書,幹應為柔從父,非從兄也。未知何者為誤。


Tàizǔ pacified the Yuán clan, and appointed Róu as Chief of Guǎn. Those in the county had already heard of his reputation, and treacherous officials of several men, all themselves left. Róu announced: “In the past Bǐng Jí oversaw government, an official once had a wrong, yet he tolerated him. All the more for these various officials, who have to me not yet done wrong! Summon them back.” All returned, and each exhorted themselves, and all became excellent officials.

太祖平袁氏,以柔為(管)〔菅〕長。縣中素聞其名,奸吏數人,皆自引去。柔教曰:「昔邴吉臨政,吏嘗有非,猶尚容之。況此諸吏,於吾未有失乎!其召復之。」咸還,皆自勵,咸為佳吏。

When Gāo Gàn surrendered, very soon after he led Bìngzhōu to rebel. Róu himself submitted to Tàizǔ, Tàizǔ wished to use an excuse to execute him, and appointed him Investigating Treachery Director Scribe, but his execution of the law was proper, and the prison had no remaining deficiencies, and he was recruited as Chancellor’s Granary Department Associate. (1)

高幹既降,頃之以并州叛。柔自歸太祖,太祖欲因事誅之,以為刺奸令史;處法允當,獄無留滯,辟為丞相倉曹屬。〔一〕

Tàizǔ wished to send Zhōng Yáo and others to suppress Zhāng Lǔ. Róu remonstrated, believing “Now if we send the Main Army, in the west Hán Suì and Mǎ Chāo will say it is acting against them, and will support each other and move in rebellion. It is appropriate to first recruit from the Three Adjuncts. If the Three Adjuncts are pacified, Hànzhōng can be taken and settled.” Zhōng Yáo entered the Passes, [Hán] Suì and [Mǎ] Chāo indeed rebelled.

太祖欲遣鍾繇等討張魯,柔諫,以為今猥遣大兵,西有韓遂、馬超,謂為己舉,將相扇動作逆,宜先招集三輔,三輔苟平,漢中可傳檄而定也。繇入關,遂、超等果反。

  • (1) Wèishì Chūnqiū states: Róu in executing the law was just and fair, and also from morning to night worked, even using his knees to hold documents and lie down. Tàizǔ once in the night went out, inspecting the various officials, saw Róu, pitied him, and gently took off his fur coat to cover Róu and left. From this he was recruited.

〔一〕 魏氏春秋曰:柔既處法平允,又夙夜匪懈,至擁膝抱文書而寢。太祖嘗夜微出,觀察諸吏,見柔,哀之,徐解裘覆柔而去。自是辟焉。


Wèi state was first established [213], and he became Secretariat Cadet. He was transferred to Chancellor’s Reason Department Official, the Order said: “In the cultivation for governing the settled, ritual is the head. Government for ending chaos, punishment is foremost. Therefore Shùn exiled the Four Vicious Clans, and Gāo Táo was Soldier. Hàn [Gāo]zǔ [Liú Bāng] abolished Qín’s severe laws, and Xiāo Hé settled [new] laws. You Official are pure in record and just in action, enlighten the statues and standards, exhort and sympathize!”

魏國初建,為尚書郎。轉拜丞相理曹掾,令曰:「夫治定之化,以禮為首。撥亂之政,以刑為先。是以舜流四凶族,皋陶作士。漢祖除秦苛法,蕭何定律。掾清識平當,明于憲典,勉恤之哉!」

Drummer Trumpeter Sòng Jīn and others at Héféi deserted. By the old laws, when the army on campaign’s soldiers desert, arrest and interrogate their wives and children. Tàizǔ worried this was not enough to stop it, and increased the punishment. [Sòng] Jīn’s mother, wife, and two younger brothers were all arrested, and the manager memorialized to kill them all. Róu advised: “Soldiers deserting the army, truly can be resented, but I humbly have heard among them there are often regretful ones. I humbly say then it is appropriate to pardon their wives and children, one so that among the rebels they will not be trusted, two so that they can be tempted to return. If following the old regulations, it will surely already cut off their hopes, and if [punishment] is again increased, I Róu fear that the soldiers in the army, seeing one man desert, will fear punishment reaching themselves, and also join together and flee, and cannot be again captured and killed. From this heavier punishment will not stop desertion, but will only increase it.” Tàizǔ said: “Excellent.” At once it was stopped and they did not kill [Sòng] Jīn’s mother and younger brothers, and those that lived were very many.

鼓吹宋金等在合肥亡逃。舊法,軍征士亡,考竟其妻子。太祖患猶不息,更重其刑。金有母妻及二弟皆給官,主者奏盡殺之。柔啟曰:「士卒亡軍,誠在可疾,然竊聞其中時有悔者。愚謂乃宜貸其妻子,一可使賊中不信,二可使誘其還心。正如前科,固已絕其意望,而猥復重之,柔恐自今在軍之士,見一人亡逃,誅將及己,亦且相隨而走,不可復得殺也。此重刑非所以止亡,乃所以益走耳。」太祖曰:「善。」即止不殺金母、弟,蒙活者甚眾。


He was promoted to Administrator of Yǐngchuān, and again returned as Legal Department Official. At the time were installed Investigators Lú Hóng, Zhào Dá and others, sent to investigate subordinates. Róu remonstrated: “In establishing offices and dividing duties, each have their responsibilities. Now in installing Investigators, is not the aim of occupying superiors and trusting subordinates. Also [Zhào] Dá and the rest repeatedly use resentment or favor to without authority increase their own power and fortune. It is appropriate to to examine and deal with them.”

遷為潁川太守,復還為法曹掾。時置校事盧洪、趙達等,使察群下,柔諫曰:「設官分職,各有所司。今置校事,既非居上信下之旨。又達等數以憎愛擅作威福,宜檢治之。」

Tàizǔ said: “Your knowledge of [Zhào] Dá and the rest, I fear does not match mine. To be able to inspect and distinguish many affairs, if sending worthy men and gentleman to do it, then it cannot be. In the past Shūsūn Tōng employed various bandits, and it was well done.”

太祖曰:「卿知達等,恐不如吾也。要能刺舉而辨眾事,使賢人君子為之,則不能也。昔叔孫通用群盜,良有以也。」

[Zhào] Dá and the rest later had their treacherous profiting discovered. Tàizǔ killed them to apologize to Róu.

達等後奸利發,太祖殺之以謝於柔。


Wén-dì ascended the throne [220], and appointed Róu as Managing Documents Attendant Censor, bestowed with fief as Marquis Within the Passes, then transferred with additional office as Managing Documents Executor of Law.

文帝踐阼,以柔為治書侍御史,賜爵關內侯,轉加治書執法。

Among the people were many who slandered with heretical speech, the Emperor resented them, and if there was a speaker of heresy they were at once killed, and the reporter rewarded. Róu sent up memorial: “Now those speaking heresy are certain to die, and reporters at once rewarded. This causes mistakes to have no way to reverse to correct, and also will open the way to the crafty falsely accusing each other, and is truly not the way to discover and control treachery, or achieve prosperous governance. In the past Zhōu-gōng composed speech, praising Yīn’s ancestors, all to not turn to the petty man’s resentments. With Hàn Tàizōng [Liú Héng], he also abolished orders against heretical speech and slander. I your servant humbly believe it is appropriate to abolish the law on slander and rewarding reporters, in order to spread the benevolence of Heaven caring for all things.”

民閒數有誹謗妖言,帝疾之,有妖言輒殺,而賞告者。柔上疏曰;「今妖言者必戮,告之者輒賞。既使過誤無反善之路,又將開凶狡之群相誣罔之漸,誠非所以息奸省訟,緝熙治道也。昔周公作誥,稱殷之祖宗,咸不顧小人之怨。在漢太宗,亦除妖言誹謗之令。臣愚以為宜除妖謗賞告之法,以隆天父養物之仁。」

The Emperor did not at once accept, and those accusing each other increased very many. The Emperor therefore sent down Imperial Order: “Those that dare slander and report each other, are to be punished by the punishment of what was reported.” Thereupon it then ended.

帝不即從,而相誣告者滋甚。帝乃下詔:「敢以誹謗相告者,以所告者罪罪之。」於是遂絕。

Supervisor Liú Cí and others since Huángchū for several years cited officials and people for treachery and crimes of ten thousand cases, Róu for all asked to investigate false and true, and for the small violations of law, it did not exceed fines. In four years, he was promoted to Minister of Justice.

校事劉慈等,自黃初初數年之閒,舉吏民姦罪以萬數,柔皆請懲虛實;其餘小小挂法者,不過罰金。四年,遷為廷尉。


At Wèi’s beginning, the Three Excellencies had no tasks, and also rarely acted in Court Government. Róu sent up memorial: “Heaven and Earthy by the Four Seasons accomplish achievement, the foremost head by assisting ministers flourish governance; Chéng Tāng wielded on Āhéng’s [Yī Yǐn] assistance, Wén and Wǔ leaned on [Zhōu-gōng] Dàn’s and [Tài-gōng] Wàng’s strength, reaching to Hàn’s beginning, Xiāo [Hé]’s and Cáo [Cān]’s companionship for the founding achievement of the dynasty were heart and backbone. This all were enlightened kings and sagely rulers appointing ministers above, and worthy ministers and excellent assistants as inner aides below. Now the ministers of the Excellencies and assistants, are all the state’s support beams, what the people all look to, but after installing the Three, they are not made aware of government, and therefore each rest and take care at home, rarely having proposals and suggestions, and this truly is not the meaning of the Court honoring and employing great ministers, nor to be called great ministers offering ability to remove wrong. When the ancients in punishment and government had doubts, then at once it was discussed in the below the Huáijí . From now afterwards, if the Court has doubts and discussions and punishments for great affairs, it is appropriate to repeatedly consult the Three Excellencies. The Three Excellencies at days of Court or the new moon, also can specially request to enter, to discuss gains and losses, extensively and thoroughly settle matters, and this may help and raise up Heaven’s message, greatly benefiting great cultivation.” The Emperor praised and accepted it.

魏初,三公無事,又希與朝政。柔上疏曰:「天地以四時成功,元首以輔弼興治;成湯仗阿衡之佐,文、武憑旦、望之力,逮至漢初,蕭、曹之儔並以元勳代作心膂,此皆明王聖主任臣於上,賢相良輔股肱於下也。今公輔之臣,皆國之棟梁,民所具瞻,而置之三事,不使知政,遂各偃息養高,鮮有進納,誠非朝廷崇用大臣之義,大臣獻可替否之謂也。古者刑政有疑,輒議於槐棘之下。自今之後,朝有疑議及刑獄大事,宜數以咨訪三公。三公朝朔望之日,又可特延入,講論得失,博盡事情,庶有裨起天聽,弘益大化。」帝嘉納焉。


The Emperor due to previous resentment, wished to bypass the law to execute Managing Documents Enforcer of Law Bào Xūn, but Róu firmly refused to follow the Imperial Order. The Emperor’s anger was severe, and he therefore summoned Róu to visit the terrace, sending envoy to carry direction to the Minister of Justice to interrogate [Bào] Xūn, [only when Bào] Xūn died was Róu then sent back to his office.

帝以宿嫌,欲枉法誅治書執法鮑勛,而柔固執不從詔命。帝怒甚,遂召柔詣臺;遣使者承指至廷尉考竟勛,勛死乃遣柔還寺。


Míng-dì succeed the throne, giving fief to Róu as Marquis of Yánshòu precinct. At the time Academic Scholars held the classics, and Róu sent up memorial: “I your servant have heard following the way and valuing study is the sagely man’s great teaching; commending cultured and esteeming Classicists is the ruler’s enlightened meaning. In the past at Hàn’s end and decline, Ritual and Music collapsed in ruin, warriors battled and tigers fought, taking battle lines as their affairs, therefore causing the crowds of Classicists, to be remote and hidden and not prominent. When Tàizǔ [Cáo Cāo] first rose, he mourned that it was like this, and during the time of suppressing chaos, he also had the prefectures and counties establish offices of teaching and learning. When Gāozǔ [Cáo Pī] succeed the throne, he therefore began this enterprise, rising to recover harmony, the provinces established lessons and exams, and therefore the scholars Under Heaven, again heard the teachings of schools, and were intimate with the rituals of sacrifices. Your Majesty oversees government, fair and enlightened and astute and wise, spreading and expanding great plan, illuminating and relieving the former course, so even Xià Qǐ’s continuation of foundation or Zhōu Chéng’s succession of enterprise, truly are not better. However now the Academic Scholars all understand the classics conduct and teaching, are the whole state’s pure selection, but enacting promotion and removal limits is too long, and one fears this is not how to esteem and make known Classicist teaching, to reward exertion and discourage idleness. Kǒng-zǐ said ‘Raise the good and teach, and the unable can be encouraged.’ Therefore in Chǔ Rites were explained to the public, and the scholars were acute and elite; Hàn honored Zhuó Mào, and the gentry competed in admiration. I your servant believe that Academic Scholars, dwell with the Way, are exemplars of the Six Arts, and should by the merits and drawbacks in learning and conduct, be cared for with ranks without superior. Kindly esteem the way and teaching, to encourage the scholarly, and cultivation will be great.” The Emperor accepted this.

明帝即位,封柔延壽亭侯。時博士執經,柔上疏曰:「臣聞遵道重學,聖人洪訓;褒文崇儒,帝者明義。昔漢末陵遲,禮樂崩壞,雄戰虎爭,以戰陳為務,遂使儒林之群,幽隱而不顯。太祖初興,愍其如此,在於撥亂之際,並使郡縣立教學之官。高祖即位,遂闡其業,興復辟雍,州立課試,於是天下之士,復聞庠序之教,親俎豆之禮焉。陛下臨政,允迪叡哲,敷弘大猷,光濟先軌,雖夏啟之承基,周成之繼業,誠無以加也。然今博士皆經明行脩,一國清選,而使遷除限不過長,懼非所以崇顯儒術,帥勵怠惰也。孔子稱『舉善而教不能則勸』,故楚禮申公,學士銳精,漢隆卓茂,搢紳競慕。臣以為博士者,道之淵藪,六藝所宗,宜隨學行優劣,待以不次之位。敦崇道教,以勸學者,於化為弘。」帝納之。


Later there was great raising of palace halls and residences, the common people were conscripted to labor, widespread selecting of many women, filling up the Rear Palace [harem], in the Rear Palace the Imperial sons continuously died young, and the succession was not yet filled.

後大興殿舍,百姓勞役;廣采眾女,充盈後宮;後宮皇子連夭,繼嗣未育。

Róu sent up memorial: “The two rebels [Wú and Shǔ] are cunning, secretly training themselves, plotting to act with weapons, and cannot be considered helpless; it is appropriate to raise officers and soldiers, mend and repair armor and weapons, and use leisure against their labors. But lately there is raising and building of palace halls and residences, high and low toil and are disturbed. If Wú and Shǔ know the situation, and communicate and plan to join power, again together sending death, it would be extremely difficult to deal with. In the past Hàn [Emperor] Wén cherished the resources of common families, and did not build small terraces for his amusement; [Huò] Qùbìng considered the harm of the Xiōngnú, and had no time for the matter of building a house. Moreover now the losses are not only an expenditure of a hundred gold, the worries are not less than the misfortunes of the Northern Dí. The already roughly finished buildings, are enough for the purpose of Court meetings and feasts. I ask to dismiss the builders, send them to return to agriculture. When the Two Directions are pacified and settled, there can again be slow building. In the past [Huáng-dì] Xuānyuán had twenty five sons, passing down rule for very long; the Zhōu House had Jī [family ruled] states of forty, and their accumulated years were very many. Your Majesty is intelligent and comprehensive, your exhaustive reasoning developed completely, but lately the Imperial sons continuously die young, and auspicious signs of vigor is not yet seen. Of the hearts of your subordinates, none do not worry and grieve. By the Zhōulǐ, Heaven’s Son’s Empresses and Consorts down are 120 women, the number of concubines is already many. I humbly have heard the count of the Rear Courtyard [harem], may have already surpassed it. That the succession is not prosperous, perhaps is because of this. I your servant humbly believe we can select virtuous women, to fulfill the Inner Office’s count, and the rest can be sent back home. Moreover allow your paternal essence rest and recover, focusing on calm as valuable. In this way, then the begetting of children, can be achieved.”

柔上疏曰:「二虜狡猾,潛自講肄,謀動干戈,未圖束手;宜畜養將士,繕治甲兵,以逸待之。而頃興造殿舍,上下勞擾;若使吳、蜀知人虛實,通謀并勢,復俱送死,甚不易也。昔漢文惜十家之資,不營小臺之娛;去病慮匈奴之害,不遑治第之事。況今所損者非惟百金之費,所憂者非徒北狄之患乎?可粗成見所營立,以充朝宴之儀。乞罷作者,使得就農。二方平定,復可徐興。昔軒轅以二十五子,傳祚彌遠;周室以姬國四十,歷年滋多。陛下聰達,窮理盡性,而頃皇子連多夭逝,熊羆之祥又未感應。群下之心,莫不悒戚。周禮,天子后妃以下百二十人,嬪嬙之儀,既以盛矣。竊聞後庭之數,或復過之,聖嗣不昌,殆能由此。臣愚以為可妙簡淑媛,以備內官之數,其餘盡遣還家。且以育精養神,專靜為寶。如此,則螽斯之徵,可庶而致矣。」

The Emperor replied: “Knowing you minister are loyal and just, devoting heart to the Ruling House, so you can give prosperous advice; in other matters may you also be heard.”

帝報曰:「知卿忠允,乃心王室,輒克昌言;他復以聞。」


At the time hunting laws were extremely strict. Yíyàng Manager of Agriculture Liú Guī secretly in the Forbidden Inner areas shot a rabbit, and his Merit Officer Zhāng Jīng went to the Investigators and reported him. The Emperor concealed [Zhāng] Jīng’s name, and arrested [Liú] Guī and handed him over to prison. Róu memorialized asking for the reporter’s name. The Emperor was greatly angry and said: “Liú Guī should die, as he dared hunt in my Forbidden Area. Sending [Liú] Guī to the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Justice should then interrogate him. Why ask for the reporter’s name. Would I without reason arrest [Liú] Guī?”

時獵法甚峻。宜陽典農劉龜竊於禁內射兔,其功曹張京詣校事言之。帝匿京名,收龜付獄。柔表請告者名,帝大怒曰:「劉龜當死,乃敢獵吾禁地。送龜廷尉,廷尉便當考掠,何復請告者主名,吾豈妄收龜邪?」

Róu said: “The Minister of Justice is the realm Under Heaven’s justice. Can he based on the Utmost Honored’s happiness or anger defame the law?”

柔曰:「廷尉,天下之平也,安得以至尊喜怒而毀法乎?」

He again sent memorial, his words deeply sincere. The Emperor’s thoughts awoke, and therefore sent down [Zhāng] Jīng’s name. He returned to investigate, and each acknowledged their crimes.

重復為奏,辭指深切。帝意寤,乃下京名。即還訊,各當其罪。


In the regulations of the time, when an official encountered great mourning [for a parent], after a hundred days all had to return to service. There was an Excellency over the Masses official Xiè Hóng who encountered his father’s mourning, later there was a military affair, and he received orders to immediately go, but he plead illness to decline. Imperial Order angrily said: “You are not Zēng or Mǐn, how can you speak of ruin [due to mourning]?” Immediately he was arrested and interrogated.

時制,吏遭大喪者,百日後皆給役。有司徒吏解弘遭父喪,後有軍事,受敕當行,以疾病為辭。詔怒曰:「汝非曾、閔,何言毀邪?」促收考竟。

Róu saw [Xiè] Hóng truly was very emaciated and weak, and sent memorial explaining his matter, that he should be pardoned. The Emperor therefore had Imperial Order: “How filial is [Xiè] Hóng! He is forgiven.”

柔見弘信甚羸劣,奏陳其事,宜加寬貸。帝乃詔曰:「孝哉弘也!其原之。」


Previously, Gōngsūn Yuān’s elder brother [Gōngsūn] Huǎng, for his father’s younger brother [Gōngsūn] Gōng was appointed an inner attendant [as hostage]. Earlier when [Gōngsūn] Yuān had not yet rebelled, he repeatedly explained there would be changes. When [Gōngsūn] Yuān plotted rebellion, the Emperor could not bear to behead him in the market, and wished to keep him in prison to kill him.

初,公孫淵兄晃,為叔父恭任內侍,先淵未反,數陳其變。及淵謀逆,帝不忍巿斬,欲就獄殺之。

Róu sent up memorial: “The Shū states: ‘For the criminal cut down their wrongs, for the virtuous make conspicuous their good.’ This is the Ruler’s Regulation’s enlightened standard. [Gōngsūn] Huǎng and his wives are the rebel’s family, and truly should be beheaded, and not leave any behind. But I your servant have humbly heard that [Gōngsūn] Huǎng previously repeatedly himself submitted, explaining [Gōngsūn] Yuān’s disastrous nature, and although he is from a vicious clan, his noble heart can be forgiven. Zhòngní sympathized with Sīmǎ Niú’s anxiety, Qí Xī explained Shū Xiàng’s mistake; these were ancient wonderful principles. I your servant believe [Gōngsūn] Huǎng in faith had reported, and it is appropriate to pardon from death; if he had not reported, then he should be beheaded in the market. Now advancing there is no sparing of his life, withdrawing there is no making know his crime, shut away in prison, to let him end himself, of the Four Quarters observing the state, some will doubt this action.”

柔上疏曰:「書稱『用罪伐厥死,用德彰厥善』,此王制之明典也。晃及妻子叛逆之類,誠應梟縣,勿使遺育。而臣竊聞晃先數自歸,陳淵禍萌,雖為凶族,原心可恕。夫仲尼亮司馬牛之憂,祁奚明叔向之過,在昔之美義也。臣以為晃信有言,宜貸其死;苟自無言,便當巿斬。今進不赦其命,退不彰其罪,閉著囹圄,使自引分,四方觀國,或疑此舉也。」

The Emperor did not listen, and indeed send envoy to present metal fragment [poison] for [Gōngsūn] Huǎng and his wives and children to drink, bestowing on them coffin and [burial] dress, en-coffining them in their residence. (1)

帝不聽,竟遣使齎金屑飲晃及其妻子,賜以棺、衣,殯斂於宅。〔一〕

  • (1) Sūn Shèng states: One hears the Five Emperors had no writing of reporting oath, the Three Kings no matter of alliance prayers, and therefore writing of alliance oath, began from the Three Jì, the creation of hostage appointment, rose from Zhōu Wēi. One of chaste men, then Heaven and Earth can be moved, opportune heart inner sprouts, then gulls and birds do not descend. Moreover if faith is insufficient then requesting objects must be attached, guessing life for oneself then hoping for another must be harbored, what difference is there from grasping ice to seek warmth, or embracing embers hoping for cold? Moreover in discussion of stealing credit, lack of restraint and such, none do not turn back on feeling and enact plans, concealing benefit and forgetting kin, give up harboring compassionate and filial love, or considering disaster of one’s downfall, Therefore Zhōu and Zhèng became enemies, Hàn [Emperor] Gāo asked for the soup [when threatened to have his parents boiled], Kuí Xiāo gave up his son, Mǎ Chāo turned back on his father, these the utmost of ruthless endurance like this, how can these because of hostages be trusted sincerely, and seek appointment [of hostages] for perpetual assurances? The time’s ruler if able to distantly consider on the former king’s utmost Way in preventing evil, to recently reflect on the vicious hearts of crafty unrestrained search for benefit, overcome it by the benevolence of releasing net, convey it by the kindness of coming revival, glorify it by the prestige of thunder, embellish it by the conferring of timely rain, then the disrespectful can be restrained in one morning, the roaring can be bent at knee to the image of Wèi. What need is there to restrain their kin in order to gain their feelings, and pressure those they live to control their orders? If it cannot be so, yet wielding their calculation methods, caging them in order to overpower many, restrain them in order to have all, then although considering one house but numerously summoning across the Four Seas, law formed rustic and narrow, hoping for half temporary benefit, from what cannot but have unbearable punishments, and therefore penalty of offspring killed, also yet disrespects oath for one man, yet speaks of enabling downfall of their brigades, without overcoming leaving raising words and that is all. How can one obtain again the standards of summoning the Four Criminals not arriving, or the righteousness of Sīmǎ Niú obtaining pardon? Supposing that the appointed hostages all did not protect their fathers and elder brothers, then after two or three words, bending pity for their intentions and all sparing them, then the elder men endanger rebelliousness of their kin’s survival. Though the sons and younger brothers are hostages, there is certainly no worry of execution, though the fathers and elder brothers are rebels, in the end there is no fear of destruction of succession. Róu did not investigate and understand this method is not the Way of flourishing Kings, should have began and expanded distant reasoning, cleared these recent systems, but explained law’s inner punishments to plead for one man’s life, and can be said to in his heart store small goods, and not have the substance of rulers. The ancients in killing men, also had their benevolence. Punishment in the prisons, was not yet a failing.
  • Your Servant Sōngzhī believes: In distinguishing regulation and matters with reason, the honor obtaining the proper time’s appropriateness, without action empty call of great words yet ends in returning to without use. In the discussion of superficial boasts, not being definite in truth, is like drawing images of demons, yet stumbling to the appearance of dogs and horses. The rise of hostage appointments, was not imitating recent times, and moreover the three directions were in tripartite balance, Liáodōng was remote and far, and detaining their close kin in order to guard against the future, was not wrong. Róu said [Gōngsūn] Huǎng had the good act of first reporting, and should be given the forgiveness of pardoning heart. But [Sūn] Shèng reproaches Róu as unable to begin expanding distant reasoning, showing this was a recent system. Indeed what is to be said of not reaching these words? If saying guessing to guard is wrong, then hostage appointment should be abolished, and indeed it is said in answer the Way of the greatly enlightened former Kings, did not in advance give the appointed life or death. [Gōngsūn] Huǎng’s appointment, was over the years and already a long time, how in obtaining the boundary between killing and sparing, can one discuss to the foundations of reason? It is for what special collection of brambles and complications, matters waiting for judgement, empty discussion of the goodness of punishment enactment, without hearing of what is the truth of right or wrong? These are high sounding and impractical, and also already extreme. Hàn [Emperor] Gāo’s matters were deficient in reason and pressing, held power by sparing kin, and very quickly had ruthless endurance system, and already there were many false accusations. Moreover since ancient times onward, there has never been son and young brother rashly reporting father and elder brother in order to plot to save himself, to secure against rebelliousness, it has never been heard. [Gōngsūn] Huǎng as an elder brother reported his younger brother, and this matter was indeed confirmed, saying [Gōngsūn] Huǎng should be killed, in order to be safeguard, if speaking is also to die, and not speaking also to die, how can it not prevent hearts returning to good, and lose the center of correct punishment? Like Zhào Kuò’s mother, by first requesting arrest was released, Zhōng Huì’s elder brother, by secretly reporting preserved his sons, in ancient and present these comparisons, are overall not few. Huǎng’s former words, the matter was the same as these examples, but alone the treatment was not stopped, and very much can be mourned!

〔一〕 孫盛曰:聞五帝無誥誓之文,三王無盟祝之事,然則盟誓之文,始自三季,質任之作,起於周微。夫貞夫之一,則天地可動,機心內萌,則鷗鳥不下。況信不足焉而祈物之必附,猜生於我而望彼之必懷,何異挾冰求溫,抱炭希涼者哉?且夫要功之倫,陵肆之類,莫不背情任計,昧利忘親,縱懷慈孝之愛,或慮傾身之禍。是以周、鄭交惡,漢高請羹,隗囂捐子,馬超背父,其為酷忍如此之極也,安在其因質委誠,取任永固哉?世主若能遠覽先王閑邪之至道,近鑒狡肆徇利之凶心,勝之以解網之仁,致之以來蘇之惠,燿之以雷霆之威,潤之以時雨之施,則不恭可斂衽於一朝,炰哮可屈膝於象魏矣。何必拘厥親以來其情,逼所愛以制其命乎?苟不能然,而仗夫計術,籠之以權數,檢之以一切,雖覽一室而庶徵於四海,法生鄙局,冀或半之暫益,自不得不有不忍之刑,以遂孥戮之罰,亦猶瀆盟由乎一人,而云俾墜其師,無克遺育之言耳。豈得復引四罪不及之典,司馬牛獲宥之義乎?假令任者皆不保其父兄,輒有二三之言,曲哀其意而悉活之,則長人子危親自存之悖。子弟雖質,必無刑戮之憂,父兄雖逆,終無勦絕之慮。柔不究明此術非盛王之道,宜開張遠義,蠲此近制,而陳法內之刑以申一人之命,可謂心存小善,非王者之體。古者殺人之中,又有仁焉。刑之於獄,未為失也。臣松之以為辨章事理,貴得當時之宜,無為虛唱大言而終歸無用。浮誕之論,不切於實,猶若畫魑魅之象,而躓於犬馬之形也。質任之興,非(防)〔仿〕近世,況三方鼎峙,遼東偏遠,羈其親屬以防未然,不為非矣。柔謂晃有先言之善,宜蒙原心之宥。而盛責柔不能開張遠理,蠲此近制。不達此言竟為何謂?若云猜防為非,質任宜廢,是謂應大明先王之道,不預任者生死也。晃之為任,歷年已久,豈得於殺活之際,方論至理之本。是何異叢棘既繁,事須判決,空論刑措之美,無聞當不之實哉?其為迂闊,亦已甚矣,漢高事窮理迫,權以濟親,而總之酷忍之科,既已大有所誣。且自古以來,未有子弟妄告父兄以圖全身者,自存之悖,未之或聞。晃以兄告弟,而其事果驗。謂晃應殺,將以遏防。若言之亦死,不言亦死,豈不杜歸善之心,失正刑之中哉?若趙括之母,以先請獲免,鍾會之兄,以密言全子,古今此比,蓋為不少。晃之前言,事同斯例,而獨遇否閉,良可哀哉!


At the time, those that killed the Forbidden Area’s deer were killed, their property confiscated by the government, and those able to discover and report them were generously rewarded. Róu sent up memorial: “The Sagely Kings in governing the world, none did not expand agriculture as their work, and reduce expenditure as their resource. When agriculture expands then grain accumulates, expenditure decreases then wealth grows; one who grows wealth and accumulates grain but has the misery of worry, this has never existed. In ancient times, if a man who did not plow, then someone because of that went hungry; if a women did not weave, then someone because of that was cold. Since [your ascension as Emperor] to the Center, the common people have provided much conscripted labor, those personally in the farm fields have decreased, and additionally recently there are hunting prohibitions, so that the herds of deer invade about, destroying and eating new sprouts, everywhere causing harm, and the damage is incalculable. Though the people build obstructions, their strength cannot stop it. Even about Xíngyáng, the circumference of several hundred lǐ, for years there is no harvest, the people’s lives, truly can be sympathized for their hurts. If now the realm Under Heaven’s wealth is very little, yet the losses by deer is very much. If there is sudden conscription for war, or disaster of famine, then there will be nothing to deal with it. May Your Majesty ponder what the previous sages considered, sympathize with the hardships of sowing and reaping, generously relieve the people, allow them to capture deer, and therefore remove the restrictions, then the masses will for a long time be relieved, and none will not be pleased and happy.” (1)

是時,殺禁地鹿者身死,財產沒官,有能覺告者厚加賞賜。柔上疏曰:「聖王之御世,莫不以廣農為務,儉用為資。夫農廣則穀積,用儉則財畜,畜財積穀而有憂患之虞者,未之有也。古者,一夫不耕,或為之饑;一婦不織,或為之寒。中閒已來,百姓供給眾役,親田者既減,加頃復有獵禁,群鹿犯暴,殘食生苗,處處為害,所傷不貲。民雖障防,力不能禦。至如滎陽左右,周數百里,歲略不收,元元之命,實可矜傷。方今天下生財者甚少,而麋鹿之損者甚多。卒有兵戎之役,凶年之災,將無以待之。惟陛下覽先聖之所念,愍稼穡之艱難,寬放民閒,使得捕鹿,遂除其禁,則眾庶久濟,莫不悅豫矣。」〔一〕

  • (1) Wèi Míngchén Zòu records Róu’s sent up memorial: “I your servant have deeply pondered the reason Your Majesty has not earlier captured these deer, is truly to wish to have them extremely flourish, and then afterward catch them for the army’s and the state’s use. However I your servant humbly believe now the deer only will daily consume, and in the end will not grow more. How does one know this? Now the Forbidden Area is wide and over 1000 lǐ, and I your lower servant calculate at least among them are tigers large and small of 600, wolves of 500, foxes of 10,000. Suppose 1 large tiger every 3 days eats 1 deer, 1 tiger in 1 year has 120 deer, then 600 tigers in 1 year eat 72,000 deer. Suppose 10 wolves each day together eat 1 deer, then 500 wolves in 1 year eat 18,000 deer. Deer fawn newly born, are not yet able to run well, so suppose 10 foxes in 1 day together eat 1 fawn, so in about the 1 moon to run well, then 10,000 foxes in 1 moon together eat deer fawns of 30,000. Altogether in 1 year the eaten are 120,000. The harm from hawks and ospreys, I your servant have not calculated. By this consideration, in the end there is no way for them to grow more, and it is not as good as earlier catching them for use.”

〔一〕 魏名臣奏載柔上疏曰:「臣深思陛下所以不早取此鹿者,誠欲使極蕃息,然後大取以為軍國之用。然臣竊以為今鹿但有日耗,終無從得多也。何以知之?今禁地廣輪且千餘里,臣下計無慮其中有虎大小六百頭,狼有五百頭,狐萬頭。使大虎一頭三日食一鹿,一虎一歲百二十鹿,是為六百頭虎一歲食七萬二千頭鹿也。使十狼日共食一鹿,是為五百頭狼一歲共食萬八千頭鹿。鹿子始生,未能善走,使十狐一日共食一子,比至健走一月之間,是為萬狐一月共食鹿子三萬頭也。大凡一歲所食十二萬頭。其鵰鶚所害,臣置不計。以此推之,終無從得多,不如早取之為便也。」


Shortly after, the Protector of the Army Regiment soldier Dòu Lǐ recently went out and did not return. The Regiment believed he had deserted, and memorialized report to pursue and capture, and seize his wife Yíng and sons and daughters to become government slaves. Yíng repeatedly went to the provincial office, claiming injustice and seeking litigation, but none investigated. Therefore she reported to the Minister of Justice.

頃之,護軍營士竇禮近出不還。營以為亡,表言逐捕,沒其妻盈及男女為官奴婢。盈連至州府,稱冤自訟,莫有省者。乃辭詣廷尉。

Róu asked: “How do you know your husband did not desert?”

柔問曰:「汝何以知夫不亡?」

Yíng shed tears and answered: “My husband when young was an orphaned, and care for an old woman like a mother, in affairs was extremely respectful and solemn, and also grieves for his sons and daughters, comforting and looking after them and not leaving them. He is not someone frivolous and crafty without regard for family.”

盈垂泣對曰:「夫少單特,養一老嫗為母,事甚恭謹,又哀兒女,撫視不離,非是輕狡不顧室家者也。」

Róu again asked: “Does your husband not with someone have complaint or resentment?”

柔重問曰:「汝夫不與人有怨讎乎?」

She answered: “My husband is good, and with others has no resentment.”

對曰:「夫良善,與人無讎。」

He also asked: “Does your husband not with someone have dealings in money?”

又曰:「汝夫不與人交錢財乎?」

She answered: “He once gave money to his fellow Regiment soldier Jiāo Zǐwén, and asked for it but did not obtain it.”

對曰:「嘗出錢與同營士焦子文,求不得。」

At the time [Jiāo] Zǐwén happened to for a small matter been bound in prison. Róu therefore met Zǐwén, and asked him the reason. While talking, he asked: “Have you ever borrowed another’s money or not?”

時子文適坐小事繫獄,柔乃見子文,問所坐。言次,曰:「汝頗曾舉人錢不?」

Zǐwén said: “Because I am poor, I do not dare borrow another’s money.”

子文曰:「自以單貧,初不敢舉人錢物也。」

Róu examined that Zǐwén’s expression was shaky, and therefore said: “You in the past borrowed Dòu Lǐ’s money, why do you say you have never?”

柔察子文色動,遂曰:「汝昔舉竇禮錢,何言不邪?」

Zǐwén was bewildered and thought the matter was discovered, and his reply had no order.

子文怪知事露,應對不次。

Róu said: “You have already killed [Dòu] Lǐ, and should earlier submit.”

柔曰:「汝已殺禮,便宜早服。」

Zǐwén therefore knocked head, and told how he killed [Dòu] Lǐ from beginning to end, and where he was buried. Róu then sent officials and troops, to follow Zǐwén’s words to go dig up [Dòu] Lǐ, and indeed found his body. Written Imperial Order restored Yíng and her children as regular people. It was announced down through the realm Under Heaven, to have [the story of Dòu] Lǐ be a warning.

子文於是叩頭,具首殺禮本末,埋藏處所。柔便遣吏卒,承子文辭往掘禮,即得其屍。詔書復盈母子為平民。班下天下,以禮為戒。


He was in office for twenty-three years, transferred to Minister of Ceremonies, within ten days promoted to Excellency of Works, later moved to Excellency over the Masses.

在官二十三年,轉為太常,旬日遷司空,後徙司徒。

Grand Tutor Sīmǎ [Yì] Xuān-wáng memorialized to dismiss Cáo Shuǎng, the Dowager-Empress’s Imperial Order summoned Róu to take Acting Staff as Acting over General-in-Chief affairs, and occupy [Cáo] Shuǎng’s camp. The Grand Tutor said to Róu: “You have become Zhōu Bó.” [Cáo] Shuǎng was executed, and [Róu] was advanced in fief to Marquis of Wànsuì village.

太傅司馬宣王奏免曹爽,皇太后詔召柔假節行大將軍事,據爽營。太傅謂柔曰:「君為周勃矣。」爽誅,進封萬歲鄉侯。

The Duke of Gāoguì village succeed the throne [254]. He was advanced in fief to Marquis of Ānguó, transferred to Excellency Commandant.

高貴鄉公即位,進封安國侯,轉為太尉。

The Duke of Chángdào village succeed the throne [260]. His fief was increased adding with the previous to 4000. From beginning to end fief was given on his two sons as precinct Marquis.

常道鄉公即位,增邑并前四千,前後封二子亭侯。

Jǐngyuán Fourth Year [263], aged 90 he died. Posthumous name Yuán-hóu “Fundamental Marquis.” His grandson [Gāo] Hún succeeded. During Xiánxī, they established the Five Ranks, and for Róu and other’s achievements to the previous dynasty, changed the fief of [Gāo] Hún to Viscount of Chānglù. (1)

景元四年,年九十薨,諡曰元侯。孫渾嗣。咸熙中,開建五等,以柔等著勳前朝,改封渾昌陸子。〔一〕

  • (1) Jìn Zhūgōng Zàn states: Róu’s eldest son [Gāo] Juàn was a General-in-chief’s Official. The next [Gāo] Dàn was successively Inspector for three provinces, Minister Charioteer. [Gāo] Dàn was rash and improper, but his decisiveness and fierceness surpassed other men. The next [Gāo] Guāng appellation Xuānmào, when young studied the family enterprise, understanding and studying legal principle. In Jìn Wǔ-dì’s reign, he was Yellow Sand Censor, with the Central Deputy was the same, was promoted to Acting Minister of Justice, later succeeding the full office. His elder brother [Gāo] Dàn was with [Gāo] Guāng different in conduct, and said [Gāo] Guāng cared for the trivial, and always scorned him, but [Gāo] Guāng in dealing with [Gāo] Dàn was increasingly solemn. He ended as Secretariat Director, posthumously Excellency of Works.

〔一〕 晉諸公贊曰:柔長子雋,大將軍掾,次誕,歷三州刺史、太僕。誕放率不倫,而決烈過人。次光,字宣茂,少習家業,明練法理。晉武帝世,為黃沙御史,與中丞同,遷守廷尉,後即真。兄誕與光異操,謂光小節,常輕侮之,而光事誕愈謹。終於尚書令。追贈司空。

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