(22.4) Chén Jiǎo 陳矯 [Jìbì 季弼]

Chén Jiǎo appellation Jìbì was a Guǎnglíng Dōngyáng man. He fled the chaos to the Jiāng’s east and Dōngchéng, declined Sūn Cè’s and Yuán Shù’s mandates, returning to his home prefecture. Administrator Chén Dēng invited him to be Merit Officer, sent Jiǎo to visit Xǔ, saying: “Below Xǔ the commentators treat me as insufficient, you sir go observe for me, return and give report.” Jiǎo returned and said: “Hearing the discussions far and near, they tend to say your enlightened governorship is arrogant and self-boastful.” [Chén] Dēng said: “Of the harmonious families, with virtue and with conduct, I respect Chén Yuánfāng and his brothers [Chén Qún’s father and uncles]; of the deeply pure and clean as jade, with courtesy and with law, I respect Huà [Xīn] Zǐyú; of the purely cultivated and hateful of evil, with knowledge and with righteousness, I respect Zhào [Yù] Yuándá; of the widely learned with strong memory, unusual and outstanding, I respect Kǒng [Róng] Wénjǔ; of the dominant and prominent, with the strategies of an overlord, I respect Liú [Bèi] Xuándé; with respect like this, what arrogance do I have? The remaining figures are trifling, how are they sufficient to note?” [Chén] Dēng’s elegant thinking was like this, and he deeply respected and befriended Jiǎo.

  陳矯字季弼,廣陵東陽人也。避亂江東及東城,辭孫策、袁術之命,還本郡。太守陳登請為功曹,使矯詣許,謂曰:「許下論議,待吾不足;足下相為觀察,還以見誨。」矯還曰:「聞遠近之論,頗謂明府驕而自矜。」登曰:「夫閨門雍穆,有德有行,吾敬陳元方兄弟;淵清玉絜,有禮有法,吾敬華子魚;清脩疾惡,有識有義,吾敬趙元達;博聞彊記,奇逸卓犖,吾敬孔文舉;雄姿傑出,有王霸之略,吾敬劉玄德:所敬如此,何驕之有!餘子瑣瑣,亦焉足錄哉?」登雅意如此,而深敬友矯。


The prefecture was by Sūn Quán besieged at Kuāngqí, [Chén] Dēng ordered Jiǎo to seek rescue from Tàizǔ. Jiǎo persuaded Tàizǔ saying: “Though our humble prefecture is small, it is a state of opportune form, if immersed in rescue and assistance, to cause it to be your outer screen, then the Wú people’s planning will be broken, Xú region will forever be secured, your martial sound will distantly shake, your benevolence and passion rush and flow, and the not yet following states will watch the winds and attach, to esteem virtue and cultivate authority, this is the ruler’s enterprise.” Tàizǔ was impressed with Jiǎo, and wished to keep him. Jiǎo declined saying: “My home state is overturned, I only hurry to report emergency, even if without Shēnxū’s efficacy, dare I forget Hóngyǎn’s righteousness?” (1) Tàizǔ then sent rescue. The Wú army at once retreated, [Chén] Dēng set up many ambushes, reining in troops to pursue, and greatly defeated them.

  郡為孫權所圍於匡奇,登令矯求救於太祖。矯說太祖曰:「鄙郡雖小,形便之國也,若蒙救援,使為外藩,則吳人剉謀,徐方永安,武聲遠震,仁愛滂流,未從之國,望風景附,崇德養威,此王業也。」太祖奇矯,欲留之。矯辭曰:「本國倒縣,本奔走告急,縱無申胥之效,敢忘弘演之義乎?」〔一〕太祖乃遣赴救。吳軍既退,登多設閒伏,勒兵追奔,大破之。

  • (1) Liú Xiàng’s Xīnxù states: Qí Duke Huán sought marriage from Wèi, Wèi would not agree, and gave marriage to Xǔ. Wèi was by the Dí attacked, Duke Huán would not rescue, so that the state was destroyed and the lord died. Duke Yì’s corpse was by the Dí people eaten, only the liver remained. Duke Yì had a minister called Hóngyǎn, went out as envoy and returned, devoted life to the liver saying: “The lord is the inside, the minister is the outside.” Then he cut open his belly and put inside the liver and died. Qí Duke Huán said: “Wèi had a minister like this and was still destroyed, I have none, my destruction is at time.” Then he rescued Wèi, and settled its lord.

      〔一〕 劉向新序曰:齊桓公求婚於衛,衛不與,而嫁於許。衛為狄所伐,桓公不救,至於國滅君死。懿公屍為狄人所食,惟有肝在。懿公有臣曰弘演,適使反,致命於肝曰:「君為其內,臣為其外。」乃刳腹內肝而死。齊桓公曰:「衛有臣若此而尚滅,寡人無有,亡無日矣!」乃救衛,定其君。


Tàizǔ recruited Jiǎo as Excellency of Work’s official and associate, sent out as Xiāng Magistrate, Campaigning South’s Chief Clerk, Péngchéng and Lèlíng Administrator, Wèi prefecture West Division Commandant. In Qǔzhōu a civilian’s father was ill, he sacrificed an ox to pray, the county bound him for execution in the market. Jiǎo said: “This is a filial son,” and memorialized to pardon him. Promoted to Wèi prefecture Administrator. At the time there were arrested prisoners in the thousands for successive years, Jiǎo believed: “Zhōu had the regulations of the three standards, Hàn reduced law to three clauses; now to cherish judgment of light or severe, and yet neglect the suffering of being long bound, can be said to be erroneous. All I will personally investigate the charges, and at one time discuss decisions.” The main army went on eastern campaign, he entered as Chancellor’s Chief Clerk. The Army returned, he again became Wèi prefecture [Administrator], transferred to West Department Associate. He followed the campaign against Hànzhōng, returned as Secretariat Documenter. He went ahead and had not yet arrived at Yè, when Tàizǔ passed away at Luòyáng, the various ministers held to custom, believing the Heir-Apparent’s succession to the throne must wait for Imperial Order command. Jiǎo said: “The King passed away outside, Heaven’s Under is frightened. The Heir-Apparent should cut grieving and succeed the throne, to connect with the expectations of the far and near. Moreover the favorite son [Cáo Zhí] is at the side [of the body and escort], if over there they produce a change, then the State Altars will be endangered.” At once he equipped the officials and prepared the rituals, in one day it was all managed. The next morning, using the Queen’s Order, issued report for the Heir-Apparent to succeed the throne, Great Amnesty on all. Emperor Wén said: “Chén Jìbì in overlooking a great matter, his wisdom and strategy surpassed other men, indeed the time’s outstanding talent.” When the Emperor ascended, transferred to the Personnel Division, enfeoffed Gāolíng precinct marquis, promoted to Secretariat Documents Director.

When Emperor Míng succeeded the throne, advanced noble rank to Dōng village marquis, fief of six hundred households. The Imperial Carriage once suddenly stopped at the Secretariat Documents Gate, Jiǎo knelt and asked the Emperor: “What does your Majesty wish for?” The Emperor said: “I only wish to check a written document.” Jiǎo said: “This is your servant’s duty, not what Your Majesty should oversee. If I your servant does not fulfill this duty, then I request to be dismissed. Your Majesty should return.” The Emperor was ashamed, turned the carriage and returned. His bright uprightness was like this. (1) Added Internal Attendant Merit Grandee, promoted Excellency over the Masses. Jǐngchū Inaugural Year [237] died, posthumous name Zhēnhóu. (2)

  太祖辟矯為司空掾屬,除相令,征南長史,彭城、樂陵太守,魏郡西部都尉。曲周民父病,以牛禱,縣結正棄市。矯曰:「此孝子也。」表赦之。遷魏郡太守。時繫囚千數,至有歷年,矯以為周有三典之制,漢約三章之法,今惜輕重之理,而忽久繫之患,可謂謬矣。悉自覽罪狀,一時論決。大軍東征,入為丞相長史。軍還,復為魏郡,轉西曹屬。從征漢中,還為尚書。行前未到鄴,太祖崩洛陽,群臣拘常,以為太子即位,當須詔命。矯曰:「王薨于外,天下惶懼。太子宜割哀即位,以繫遠近之望。且又愛子在側,彼此生變,則社稷危矣。」即具官備禮,一日皆辦。明旦,以王后令,策太子即位,大赦蕩然。文帝曰:「陳季弼臨大節,明略過人,信一時之俊傑也。」帝既踐阼,轉署吏部,封高陵亭侯,遷尚書令。明帝即位,進爵東鄉侯,邑六百戶。車駕嘗卒至尚書門,矯跪問帝曰:「陛下欲何之?」帝曰:「欲案行文書耳。」矯曰:「此自臣職分,非陛下所宜臨也。若臣不稱其職,則請就黜退。陛下宜還。」帝慚,回車而反。其亮直如此。〔一〕加侍中光祿大夫,遷司徒。景初元年薨,諡曰貞侯。〔二〕

  • (1) Shìyǔ states: Liú Yè for being early to advance met with favor, and took advantage to slander Jiǎo as concentrating power. Jiǎo was afraid, and about it asked his eldest son Běn, Běn did not know what to do. The next son Qiān said: “The Ruler Above is enlightened and sagely, you father are a chief minister, if now [you two] are not in accord, it will not be more than not becoming an Excellency.” After several days the Emperor was to meet Jiǎo, Jiǎo again asked his two sons, Qiān said: “His Majesty’s thinking was resolved, and therefore he will meet with you father.” He then entered for the whole day, the Emperor said: “Liú Yè framed you, and We had memories of you; our heart was therefore resolved.” With gold of five plates bestowed on him, Jiǎo declined. The Emperor said: “Do you believe it a small favor? You already understand Our heart. It is because your wives and children do not yet understand it.” The Emperor worried for the State Altars, and asked Jiǎo: “Excellency Sīmǎ [Yì] is loyal and upright, can he be said to be a servant of the State Altars?” Jiǎo said: “[He is] looked to by the Court; the State Altars, that is not yet known.”

  〔一〕 世語曰:劉曄以先進見幸,因譖矯專權。矯懼,以問長子本,本不知所出。次子騫曰:「主上明聖,大人大臣,今若不合,不過不作公耳。」後數日,帝見矯,矯又問二子,騫曰:「陛下意解,故見大人也。」既入,盡日,帝曰:「劉曄構君,朕有以跡君;朕心故已了。」以金五鉼授之,矯辭。帝曰:「豈以為小惠?君已知朕心,顧君妻子未知故也。」帝憂社稷,問矯:「司馬公忠正,可謂社稷之臣乎?」矯曰:「朝廷之望;社稷,未知也。」

  • (2) Wèishì Chūnqiū states: Jiǎo originally was the Liú clan’s son, sent out to succeed to his maternal uncle’s clan but married with his original clan. Xú Xuān every time criticized this, and the court discussed this deficiency. Tàizǔ cherished Jiǎo’s talent and capacity, and wished to support and protect him, and so sent down Order that said: “From the tragic chaos onward, customs and teachings have become exhausted and meager, slanderous discussion speech, is difficult to use to commend or censure. Everything from before Jiàn’ān Fifth Year [200] is all not to be discussed. Thus for those slanderous commentators that judged previously, by their punishment punish them.”

  〔二〕 魏氏春秋曰:矯本劉氏子,出嗣舅氏而婚于本族。徐宣每非之,庭議其闕。太祖惜矯才量,欲擁全之,乃下令曰:「喪亂已來,風教彫薄,謗議之言,難用褒貶。自建安五年已前,一切勿論。其以斷前誹議者,以其罪罪之。」


Son Běn succeeded, successively ranked as prefectural administrator, Nine Minsiters. Wherever he was he maintained guiding principles, raising the main form, able to cause the various subordinates to devote themselves. He had talent in managing, did not personally handle small affairs, did not study laws but obtained the Minister of Justice’s title, surpassing Sīmǎ Qí and the rest, refined and precise in civil reasoning. Promoted Defending North General, Lent Staff as Regional Commander over the Hé’s north various military affairs. Died, son Càn succeeded. Běn’s younger brother Qiān, during Xiánxī became Chariots and Cavalry General. (1)

  子本嗣,歷位郡守、九卿。所在操綱領,舉大體,能使群下自盡。有統御之才,不親小事,不讀法律而得廷尉之稱,優於司馬岐等,精練文理。遷鎮北將軍,假節都督河北諸軍事。薨,子粲嗣。本弟騫,咸熙中為車騎將軍。〔一〕

  • (1) Citing Jìn shū states: Qiān appellation Xiūyuān, for Jìn assisted the mandate as a meritorious minister, reached Grand Tutor, enfeoffed Gāopíng prefectural Duke.

  〔一〕 案晉書曰:騫字休淵,為晉佐命功臣,至太傅,封高平郡公。


Previously, Jiǎo became prefectural Merit Officer, sent past Tàishān. Tàishān Administrator Dōng prefecture’s Xuē Tì was impressed with him, and joined with him in close friendship. He teased Jiǎo saying: “A prefectural official yet interacting a two thousand dàn [official], a neighboring state’s master lowering himself to accompany a servant in travels, is it not acceptable?” Tì later became Wèi prefecure and Secretariat Documents Director, all continuing and succeeding Jiǎo.

  初,矯為郡功曹,使過泰山。泰山太守東郡薛悌異之,結為親友。戲謂矯曰:「以郡吏而交二千石,鄰國君屈從陪臣游,不亦可乎!」悌後為魏郡及尚書令,皆承代矯云。〔一〕

  • (1) Shìyǔ states: Tì appellation Xiàowēi. Aged twenty-two, from Yǎn province Attending Official he became Tàishān Administrator. Previously, Tàizǔ settled Jì province, with Tì and Dōngpíng’s Wáng Guó as his Left and Right Chief Clerks, later he reached Central Manager of the Army, always he was loyal and dependable and precise in affairs, for generations of officials a model.

  〔一〕 世語曰:悌字孝威。年二十二,以兗州從事為泰山太守。初,太祖定冀州,以悌及東平王國為左右長史,後至中領軍,並悉忠貞練事,為世吏表。

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