Yú Fān appellation Zhòngxiáng was a Kuàijī Yúyáo man, (1) the Administrator Wáng Lǎng mandated him as Merit Officer. Sūn Cè campaigned against Kuàijī, Fān at the time encountered his father’s passing, in mourning garments and headscarf visited the government office, [Wáng] Lǎng wished to meet him, Fān then removed his mourning garments and entered to meet, advising [Wáng] Lǎng to flee from [Sūn] Cè. [Wáng] Lǎng did not listen, resisted in battle and was utterly defeated, fleeing into the sea. Fān accompanied the camp protectors, arrived at the eastern part’s Hòuguān, the Hòuguān Chief closed the city and would not receive them, Fān went and persuaded him, and afterward they met with acceptance. (2) [Wáng] Lǎng said to Fān: “You have an aged mother, you can return.” (3) Fān then returned, [Sūn] Cè again mandated him as Merit Officer, treating him with the courtesy of making friends, personally visiting Fān’s mansion. (4)
- (1) Wúshū states: Fān when young enjoyed scholarship, had high air. Aged twelve, there was a guest waiting for his elder brother, did not pass Fān, Fān sent a letter after him that said: “I have heard amber does not attract decayed plants, magnets do not draw bent needles, to pass and not obtain, is it not also appropriate?” The guest obtained the letter and was impressed with him, and from this he met with praise.
- (2) Wúshū states: Fān first wished to escort [Wáng] Lǎng to Guǎnglíng, [Wáng] Lǎng was deceived by Wáng Fāngpíng’s note saying “Danger comes seeking me, the southern peaks seek one another,” and therefore then went south. When reaching Hòuguān, he again wished to flee to Jiāo province, Fān remonstrated Lǎng: “This is only an absurd document. Jiāo province is without southern peaks, how can you flee there?” Thus he stopped.
- (3) Fān Biézhuàn states: [Wáng] Lǎng sent Fān to meet Yùzhāng Administrator Huà Xīn, plotting to raise righteous troops. Fān had not yet reached Yùzhāng, heard Sūn Cè was heading toward Kuàijī, Fān thus returned. It happened he encountered his father’s passing, as a minister envoy having integrity, he did not dare pass home, in the night going and pursuing [Wáng] Lǎng to Hòuguān. [Wáng] Lǎng sent Fān back, and afterward he went to hold mourning.
- But the biography says that at Sūn Cè’s coming, Fān in mourning garments and headscarf visited the office gates, urging [Wáng] Lǎng to avoid [Sūn] Cè, then this is a huge difference.
- (4) Jiāngbiǎo zhuàn states: [Sūn] Cè’s letter said to Fān: “In today’s affairs, I and you will share in them, do not say that Sūn Cè treats you as [only] a prefecture official.”
[Sūn] Cè enjoyed charging ahead in hunting expeditions, Fān remonstrated saying: “Your enlightened administratorship employs forces of crow gatherings, drives on dispersed and attached servicemen, all able to use their to-the-death strength, even Hàn Emperor Gāo does not match. As for recklessly going out in trivial travels, the following officials have no opportunity to be strict, the officials and soldiers always suffer from it. For a lord of men to not be serious then is to not be authoritative, and therefore the white dragon dressed as a fish was trapped by Yùqiě, the white serpent was at ease and Liú Jì armed it, may you give it some small consideration.” [Sūn] Cè said: “Your words are true. However at times I have thoughts, sitting upright in anxiety, having Pí Chén’s rough beginning plans, and therefore I go.” (1)
- (1) Wú shū states: [Sūn] Cè suppressed Shānyuè, beheading their chief commander, ordering all his left and right to separately go in pursuit of rebels, riding alone and meeting Fān in the mountains. Fān asked where his left and right attendants were, [Sūn] Cè said: “All going in pursuit of rebels.” Fān said: “This is dangerous!” He told [Sūn] Cè to dismount horse: “These grasses are deep, if suddenly there is an alarm, the horse will not be able to turn around, only lead it, holding bow and arrow on foot. I Fān am skilled in using lance, and request to go at the front.” They found flat ground, and urged [Sūn] Cè to mount horse. [Sūn] Cè said: “You are without horse, what about that?” Replied: “I Fān am able to go on foot, in a day I can go two hundred lǐ, from since the suppression campaigns, of the officials and troops none have been able to keep up with me Fān, your enlightened administratorship try spurring the horse, I Fān am able to on foot follow it.” Going they reached a large road, finding one drum official, [Sūn] Cè took a horn and personally sounded it, the division retainers noted the sound, and small and large all went out, and so followed all around, pacifying and settling three prefectures.
- Jiāngbiǎo zhuàn states: [Sūn] Cè suppressed Huáng Zǔ, turned the army wishing to pass and take Yùzhāng, specially requesting Fān saying: “Huà Zǐyú personally has reputation, however he is not my match. Moreover one hears his battle preparations are extremely little, if he does not open the gates and yield the city, once the metal and drums shake, there cannot be lack of injury and harm, you then go at the front to announce my intentions.” Fān at once accepted the orders and took leave, directly arriving at the prefecture, requesting in plain robe and hemp headcloth to meet together with [Huà] Xīn, and said to Xīn: “In your own judgment of reputation within the seas, how do you compare with my humble prefecture’s former adminsitratorship Wáng [Lǎng]?” [Huà] Xīn said: “I do not match.” Fān said: “Are Yùzhāng’s supplies and provisions much or few? The equipment and weapons sharp or not? The servicemen and civilians in valor and resolution how do they compare with my humble prefecture?” Again said: “It does not compare.” Fān said: “Suppressing Rebels General [Sūn Cè]’s wisdom and strategy surpasses the age, he uses troops like a spirit, previously drove away Liú [Yáo, Governor of] Yángzhōu, this you personally witnessed, to the south settled my humble prefecture, and this you also have heard of. Now to wish defend an isolated city, you have yourself measured supplies and provisions, already know it is not enough, to not early make plans, the regret would be too late. Now the main army already goes to Jiāoqiū, I will then return and leave, tomorrow at noon if a welcome dispatch does not arrive, I will say goodbye to you.” Fān then left, Xīn in the next morning went out of the city, sending officials to welcome [Sūn] Cè. [Sūn] Cè then settled Yùzhāng, led the army back to Wú, feasted and bestowed on the officers and soldiers, calculated achievements to enact rewards, saying to Fān: “I in the past twice reached Shòuchūn, met Mǎ Mìdī, and with the central province’s scholar officials gathered, saying that our eastern region’s people only had many talents, but dislike learning and are not extensive, and in discussing meanings, there are things that are lacking. My thinking yet say it is not so. You are extensively learned with much heard, and therefore I previously wished to have you once visit Xǔ, to meet with the Court servicemen, to break the central state’s absurdly talking brats. You were not willing to go, so then I sent [Zhāng Hóng] Zǐgāng; I fear Zǐgāng cannot bind the brats and stop their tongues.” Fān said: “I Fān am your enlightened administratorship’s family treasure, and if I were show to others, and supposing others detained me, then I would leave your enlightened administratorship’s good assistance, and therefore previously I did not go.” [Sūn] Cè laughed and said: “Indeed.” Therefore he said: “I have suppression campaign matters, and cannot yet return to the office, you again as the merit officer will be my Xiāo Hé, and defend Kuàijī.” After three days, then sent Fān back to the prefecture.
- Your Servant Sōngzhī believes: Wáng [Lǎng] and Huà [Xīn] two excellencies in troubled times, resisting ferocious and sharps edges was what both were not able to do. [Huà] Xīn’s reputation and virtue truly was higher than [Wáng] Lǎng, but Jiāngbiǎozhuàn narrates that Fān persuaded Huà [Xīn] saying ‘Within the seas in fame and reputation how do you compare to Wáng,’ this report is wrong. However, that Excellency Wáng [Lǎng] resisted in battle and Huà [Xīn] instead requested to submit, truly it was because when Sūn Cè first rose, his reputation was small and his forces few, and therefore Wáng [Lǎng] was able to raise troops, how was it being superior in warfare? [Sūn] Cè later had his authority and strength become flourishing, his power could not be matched, Huà [Xīn] estimating strength and stopping, was not necessarily because of [Yú Fān] Zhòngxiáng’s persuasion. If they had exchanged ground and position, also Huà [Xīn] would battle and Wáng [Lǎng] submit.
- According to Wú lì it records Fān saying to [Huà] Xīn: “I have humbly heard that your enlightened administratorship with his administratorship Wáng [Lǎng] have equal fame in the central provinces, exemplars within the seas, and though I was away in the east, I always harbored reverence.” [Huà] Xīn replied: “I do not compare to Wáng [Lǎng, Administrator of] Kuàijī.” Fān again asked: “Have you to examined Yùzhāng’s elite troops, how does it compare to Kuàijī?” Replied: “It greatly does not compare.” Fān said: “Your enlightened adminsitratorship saying you do not compare to Wáng Kuāiji, is only modest talk; your elite troops not comparing to Kuàijī, truly is as you say.” Therefore he explained how exceptional was Sūn Cè’s talent and strategy, uniqueness in using troops, [Huà] Xīn then replied saying he would go. Fān went out, Xīn sent officials to welcome [Sūn] Cè.
- The two reports have things not the same, this report is superior.
Fān was sent out as Fùchūn Chief. [When Sūn] Cè died, the various chief clerks all wished to go out to visit the mourning, Fān said: “One fears in neighboring counties of the mountain peoples some are treacherous, to distantly leave the city walls, is certainly to cause the unexpected.” Therefore he remained set mourning dress and enacting mourning. The various counties all imitated this, so all was at peace. (1) Later Fān’s province recommended him as Abundant Talent, Hàn summoned him as Attendant Censor, Excellency Cáo as Excellency of Works recruited him, all he did not accept. (2)
- (1) Wúshū states: [Sūn] Cè died, [Sūn] Quán presided affairs. Settling Warfare Internal Cadet General [Sūn] Gǎo was [Sūn] Cè’s elder cousin, garrisoned Wūchéng, organized and commanded officials and troops, wishing to take Kuàijī. Kuàijī heard this, sent the people to defend the cities to wait for the successor ruler’s commands, and therefore ordered someone to inform [Sūn] Gǎo.
- Kuàijī Diǎnlù records Fān persuading [Sūn] Gǎo: “His enlightened administratorship Supressing Rebels [General Sūn Cè] unexpectedly departed. Now the taking over of matters and presiding over of the forces, should be on the Filial and Incorrupt [candidate Sūn Quán], I Fān already with the whole prefecture’s officials and troops hold to the cities to firmly defend, certainly wishing to go out in a moment’s command, to for the Filial and Incorrupt remove harm, may you consider this.” Therefore [Sūn] Gǎo retreated.
- Your Servant Sōngzhī notes: these two books say at the time of [Sūn] Cè’ death, Fān still was Merit Officer, with the base biography not the same.
- (2) Wúshū states: Fān heard Excellency Cáo’s recruitment and said: “Does Bandit Zhí wish to use his excess wealth to defile a good family?” Therefore he refused and would not accept.
Fān to Minister Treasurer Kǒng Róng wrote letter, and further showed the Yì annotations he had written. [Kǒng] Róng’s reply letter said: “Hearing of Yánlíng’s music, seeing your management of the Yì, is to then know of the southeast’s beauty, it is not only Kuàijī’s bamboo arrows. Also [your] observing images of cloud forms, examining answer of cold and warmth, originating their disaster or fortune, with divinity joining in accord, it can be said to explore the mysterious with exhaustive understanding.”
Kuàijī East Division Commandant Zhāng Hóng also with [Kǒng] Róng wrote letter that said: “Yú Zhòngxiáng formerly tended to be criticized by commentators; a beautiful treasure is his character: engraving and polishing it increases its brightness, it is not enough to damage it.”
Sūn Quán appointed him Cavalry Commandant. Fān repeatedly was offensive and remonstrated and argued, [Sūn] Quán could not be pleased, and also by nature he was not cooperative with people, often met with slander and defamation, and in connection was exiled to Dānyáng’s Jīng county. Lǚ Méng plotted to take Guān Yǔ, claimed illness and returned to Jiànyè, and as Fān also was knowledgeable in medical techniques, invited him to personally accompany, also wishing to take advantage of this to have Fān obtain release. Later [Lǚ] Méng raised army going west upstream, Nán prefecture administrator Mí Fāng opened the city and went out to surrender. [Lǚ] Méng had not yet occupied the prefecture city and yet made merry on the sand, Fān said to Méng: “Now we have a trifling one heart of General Mí, of the people inside the city how can they be completely trusted, why not urgently enter the city to grab their keys?” [Lǚ] Méng at once followed this. At the time in the city there was an ambush plan, due to Fān’s plan it could not be enacted. When Guān Yǔ was defeated, [Sūn] Quán had Fān divine it, obtaining Duì bottom Kǎn top, Jié, five lines changing to Lín. Fān said: “In not more than two days, he certainly will have head cut off.” Indeed it was as Fān said. [Sūn] Quán said: “[Even if] you do not match Fú Xī, you can be with Dōngfāng Shuò compared.”
Wèi officer Yú Jīn was by [Guān] Yǔ captured, bound inside the city, [Sūn] Quán arrived and released him, and invited him to meet. On another day, [Sūn] Quán rode horse and went out, leading [Yú] Jīn to go together, Fān shouted at [Yú] Jīn: “You surrendered caitiff, how dare you with my master have equal horse head?” He wished to raise whip to strike [Yú] Jīn, [Sūn] Quán shouted to stop him. Later [Sūn] Quán in a tower ship gathered the various ministers to drink, [Yú] Jīn on hearing the music shed tears, Fān again said: “You wish to by this falsely seek pardon?” [Sūn] Quán was displeased and dissatisfied. (1)
- (1) Wú shū states: Later [Sūn] Quán with Wèi made peace, and wished to send [Yú] Jīn back to return north, Fān again remonstrated saying: “[Yú] Jīn lost a force of several tens of thousands, himself is a surrendered caitiff, and also could not die. The north is accustomed to military government, and obtaining him certainly will not use him. Returning him though is not a loss, yet it is releasing a bandit, it is not as good as beheading him to warn the Three Armies, to show to those servants of men who have two hearts.” [Sūn] Quán did not listen. The various ministers sent off [Yú] Jīn, Fān said to [Yú] Jīn: “You do not say Wú is without men, it is only that my plan happened to not be used.” [Yú] Jīn though was by Fān hated, however he yet sighed in praise of Fān, Wèi Emperor Wén [Cáo Pī] always for Fān prepared an empty seat.
When [Sūn] Quán became King of Wú, at the end of a feast, he personally rose to pass the alcohol, Fān lay on the ground and acted intoxicated, not accepting. [Sūn] Quán left, Fān rose and sat. [Sūn] Quán because of this was greatly furious, hand wielding sword wishing to strike him, of the attendants and the seated none were not frightened, only Minister of Agriculture Liú Jī rose and embraced [Sūn] Quán remonstrating: “If you great king after three goblets personally kill an excellent serviceman, even though Fān is guilty, Under Heaven who will understand that? Moreover you Great King due to your ability to tolerate the worthy and care for the masses therefore have those within the seas looking on. To now in one morning abandon it, can it be?” [Sūn] Quán said: “Cáo [Cāo] Mèngdé yet killed Kǒng [Róng] Wénjǔ, what about me and Yú Fān?” [Liú] Jī said: “[Cáo Cāo] Mèngdé recklessly harmed a serviceman and all Under Heaven criticized it. You Great King personally act in virtue and righteousness, wishing to with Yáo and Shùn have comparable greatness, how can you compare yourself to that other?” Fān because of this obtained escape. [Sūn] Quán therefore ordered his left and right attendants, that from now if after drinking alcohol he said to kill, all were not to be killed.
Fān once rode a boat, and with Mí Fāng encountered one another, on [Mí] Fāng’s boat of the people many wished to order Fān to get out of the way, first ordering: “Get out of the way of the General’s boat!” Fān in stern voice said: “To lose loyalty and faith, how can one serve a master? To give over two cities to another and yet be called a General, can it be?” [Mí] Fāng closed the doors and did not answer and hurriedly got out of the way from him. Later Fān rode a carriage, again passed [Mí] Fāng’s camp gates, the official closed the gates, the carriage could not pass. Fān again angrily said: “When you should close you instead open, when you should open you instead close, how is this appropriate?” [Mí] Fāng heard this and had shamed appearance.
Fān by nature was negligent and frank, repeatedly was disrespectful after drinking alcohol. [Sūn] Quán with Zhāng Zhāo discussed divine immortals, Fān pointed at [Zhāng] Zhāo and said: “Those are all dead men, and yet are called divine immortals, in the world what immortals are there?” [Sūn] Quán’s accumulated anger was not just one time, and therefore he exiled Fān to Jiāo province. Though he had position as a released criminal, yet he lectured and studied without tiring, his gate disciples always were several hundred people. (1) Also he made for the Láo-zǐ, Lúnyǔ, and Guóyǔ teaching annotations, all passed through the ages. (2)
- (1) Fān Biézhuàn states: When [Sūn] Quán took Honored Title, Fān therefore sent up letter that said: “Your Majesty receives enlightened sagely virtue, embodies the filial piety of Shùn and Yǔ, in the phase of changing fortunes, following Heaven to relieve all things. Reverently learning of your mandate, I your servant only applaud and dance, a criminal abandoned and cut off, bowing and congratulating without limit, looking up to view the august utmost, both joyous and grieved. I your servant in submission self examine, my life as light as a sparrow or mouse, my nature trifling as a fine hair, my crimes have none greater, not containable by execution, the clear heavens have none greater, to spare and forgive me nine years, withdrawing to consider death, repeatedly I received life, and again stole sight and breath. I your servant am at the year of obedient ear [sixty], think of my faults in sorrow and anger, my appearance is dried up and haggard, my hair white and my teeth falling out, though I was not able to die, in lamentation I have ended and passed, not seeing the fortune of the palace and hundred bureaus, not witnessing the ornaments of the Imperial carriage and golden chariots, looking up to observe the murmurs of the countless numerous people, nearby hearing the music of the bells and drums, forever perishing by the sea, abandoned bones in cut off land, I cannot bear the sorrow, hearing of the great celebrations, I am pleased enough to forget my punishments.”
- (2) Fān Biézhuàn states: Fān first set Yì annotations, memorializing up stating:
- “I your servant have heard that of the origins of the Six Classics, none are greater than Yīn and Yáng, and therefore Fú Xī looked up to the heavens’ hanging signs, and so established the Eight Trigrams, observed the changing six lines to form the Sixty-four, to comprehend the divine intelligence, to categorize all things. Your servant’s great-great-grandfather former Línglíng Administrator [Yú] Guāng, when young researched Mèng shì’s Yì, great-grandfather former Píngyú Magistrate [Yú] Chéng, carried on this enterprise, reaching to your servant’s grandfather [Yú] Fèng who made it the most comprehensive. Your servant’s late father former Rìnán Administrator [Yú] Xīn, received the base from [Yú] Fèng, most having the ancient writings, through the generations passing on this enterprise, reaching to your servant as the fifth generation. The predecessors in communicating the explanations, often played with sections and clauses, though there were secret sayings, to the classic it was distant and loose. Your servant was born in a world of chaos, grew up in the army, and practiced the classic between mallets and drums, explained theories atop military horses, immersed in the sayings of former teachers, and following the classics established annotations. Also your servant’s prefecture official Chén Táo dreamed of your servant and a Dào mystic meeting one another, releasing hair and wearing deer fur coat, spreading the Yì six lines, taking three to give your servant to drink, and I your servant begged to swallow all of it. The Dào mystic said the Yì’s Dào was with Heaven, and three lines was enough. How can I your servant accept the mandate, it should be to understand the classic! What I have read of the various school’s explanations do not diverge from common customs, their meanings have some that are not accurate, and at once I revise and settle it all, to reach to the correct. Kǒng-zǐ said: ‘Qián Yuán uses nine and Heaven’s Under is governed.’ The sagely man faces south, covering and taking those separating, this truly is the Way that Heaven’s Son should harmonize with Yīn and Yáng to deliver the unicorn and phoenix. Solemnly standardizing the books to complement the above, I believe it not to be wrong.”
- Fān also memorialized stating:
- “Of the classics in greatness, none surpass the Yì. From Hàn’s beginning onward, of the outstanding talents within the seas, of those that read the Yì, those who understand it are very few. Reaching to the time of Xiào-Líng, Yǐngchuān’s Xún Xū was titled as Knowing the Yì, I your servant obtained his annotations, and it was better than the common classicists, but as for its saying the southwest obtaining friends, the northeast losing friends, inverting and reversing, its understanding cannot be known. Kǒng-zǐ sighed of the Yì stating: “Those that understand the Way of changes, they understand the actions of the spirits!” to praise the creation of the great enveloping four images, and yet [Xún Xū] took the above as the section head, especially bewildering and laughable. Also Nán prefecture Administrator Mǎ Róng, was famed as an eminent talent, but his explanations further do not reach [Xún] Xū’s. Kǒng-zǐ said: “[There are those who] can study together, but cannot follow the way,” is it not correct! As for Běihǎi’s Zhèng Xuán, Nányáng’s Sòng Zhōng, though each set annotations, [Sòng] Zhōng slightly differs from [Zhèng] Xuán and both are not able to find the gate, and is difficult to show to the world.”
- Also he memorialized a catalogue of criticisms and failings of Zhèng Xuán’s explanation of the Shàng shū:
- “I your servant have heard Zhōu gōng systematized ritual to distinguish superior and subordinate, Kǒng-zǐ said: ‘There is ruler and subject and afterward there is superior and subordinate, there is superior and subordinate and afterward ritual meaning is engraved,” and therefore the honoring of ruler and lowering of subject is the great management of ritual. In prostration I have seen the former scholar Běihǎi’s Zhèng Xuán’s annotations to the Shàng shū, in the Gù Mìng [chapter] Kāng-wáng took up the jade vessel, the ancient [form of the word] ‘moon’ resembles [the word] ‘same,’ and so was mistakenly made ‘same,’ so it was without awareness was settled, and further taught to mean cup, calling it an alcohol cup; Chéng-wáng was severely ill and leaning on a table, using the cleansing wash for purifying, to rinse clothes to achieve affairs; the word ‘cleansing’ was falsely changed to be ‘purifying,’ and so lead to the incorrectness; also the ancient large seal script word guàn’s reading should be ‘liǔ,’ the ancient liǔ and guàn were the same word, and it was believed to be ‘darkened.’ In ‘dividing north the three miáo,’ ‘north’ in the past was the word ‘distinguish,’ he also teaches ‘north’ saying ‘north’ is like ‘distinguishing.’ With these examples, it truly is bewildering. Yùrén Zhí states Heaven’s Son takes up jade vessel to hold Court with the various lords, is called an alcohol cup; Heaven’s Son washing face, is called cleansing clothes, the ancient script ‘guàn’ instead becomes ‘darkened.’ It is extremely unaware and conceals deficiencies in meaning. In these several matters, the mistakes have none greater, and it is appropriate to order scholar officials to settled these three matters. Also Mǎ Róng’s teaching annotations believe the ‘same’ to be ‘great unification of Heaven’s Under,’ and present classics add ‘metal’ to then create the word ‘copper,’ explaining and teaching it speaks of Heaven’s Son’s secondary seal, and though all are wrong, yet it is more excessive than [Zhèng] Xuán. If these are not settled, after I your servant die, I will exhort it to later generations, and though in the world there are those aware, they hold to modesty and none memorialize to correct it. Also [Zhèng] Xuán’s annotations to the Five Classics, the violations of meaning that are exceptionally extreme are one hundred sixty seven things, and cannot be not corrected. To send it to the schools, and pass them down to the yet to come, I your servant am ashamed of this.”
- When Fān was exiled to the southern regions, he said: “I personally regret being negligent of integrity, my bones and body without flattery, offending superiors and committing crime, to forever be lost by the sea, living there was none I could speak with, dying with only black flies as funeral guests, if Under Heaven there was one person that understood me, it would be enough to not regret.” Using ancient books to comfort himself, he consulted the Yì to form signs, to divine good and bad fortune. Also as the Sòng shì explanations of [Zhèng] Xuán tended to have errors and mistakes, he further established systems, altogether writing Míng Yáng [Understanding Yáng] and Shì Sòng [Explaining Sòng] to reason its failings.
- Your servant Sōngzhī notes: Fān says ‘the ancient large seal script guàn word should be read as liǔ, the ancient liǔ and guàn are the same word.’ I humbly say Fān’s saying is correct. Therefore liú, liú, liǎo, liǔ are used the same as this word, because they have the same pronunciation, with the word for sunrise mǎo having the same word and different pronunciation. However Hàn shū‘s Wáng Mǎng zhuàn discussing mǎo metal knife, therefore should be the sunrise mǎo, and to now it still cannot be comprehensively corrected. However as the era had confused most of it, therefore Fān spoke of it. Xún Xū is Xún Shuǎng’s other name.
Previously, Shānyīn’s Dīng Lǎn and Tàimò’s Xú Líng, one was among the county officials, one was among the masses and not yet known, Fān in one meeting with them, then with them became friends, and in the end they achieved famed reputations. (1)
- (1) Kuàijī Diǎnlù states:
- Lǎn appellation Xiàolián, at eight years was fatherless, the family also was alone and small, was pure in self and established conduct, in purpose was not lax, deferring wealth to his younger cousin, and for righteously yielding was praised. In serving the prefecture he reached Merit Officer, observing Shǐpíng Chief. As a man he was profound and pure, his gates without mixed guests. Sūn Quán extremely valued and treated him, he had not yet been selected for employment, when it happened he of illness died, extremely met with lamentation, unique for his family status. Lǎn’s son Gù appellation Zǐjiàn, originally named Mì, to avoid [the name taboo of] Téng Mì, changed it to Gù. When Gù was in swaddling clothes, Kàn Zé met and was impressed with him, saying: “This child later will certainly reach to the Excellencies and Assistants.” Gù when young lost father, alone resided with his mother, the family was poor and held to frugality, and he cared [for his mother] with devotion, his younger cousins were fatherless and young, and with him shared cold and warmth. Fān wrote letter to Gù’s co-worker that said: “Dīng Zǐjiàn is honest and deep and enjoys virtue, his house is subdued in construction, his fields without extra firewood, this restrained conduct, its beauty is exceptional. Of Língdé’s posterity, only this sir is most excellent.” He successively held prominent position, in Sūn Xiū’s time Gù became Left Censorate Grandee, when Sūn Hào succeeded the throne, promoted to Excellency over the Masses. [Sūn] Hào was oppressive, Gù with Lù Kǎi and Mèng Zōng were of the same heart in worrying for the state, aged seventy-six years he died. His on Mí appellation Qīnyuǎn served Jìn, reaching Liáng province Inspector. Grandson Tán, Merit Grandee.
- Xú Líng appellation Yuándà, successively was chief in three counties, wherever he was he was praised, promoted to Línglíng Administrator. At the time the Court treated him as to the ranks of the Ministers, and therefore Fān wrote letter that said: “Yuándà receiving treatment as to an Upper Minister, from Shūxiàng at Jìn, there has never been as now.” He met with heavy value like this. Líng died, of his servants and guests and lands and fields some were seized away, Luò Tǒng for Líng’s family petitioned this, seeking to use Dīng Lǎn and Bǔ Qīng and others as comparison, and [Sūn] Quán agreed. Líng’s son Píng, appellation Bóxiān, from childhood was well known, Fān extremely loved him, frequently praising and sighing. When Zhūgě Kè became Dānyáng Administrator, suppressing Shānyuè, as Píng had heavy authority and thoughtful consideration, and could with him devote effort, requested Píng to be his deputy, gradually promoted to Wǔchāng Left Division Commander, he devoted his heart to attending to things, and the soldiers all gave all their strength. Previously, Píng became [Zhūgě] Kè’s attending official, his intentions were extremely meager, and reaching to [Zhūgě] Kè assisting the government, his treatment of Píng increased in distance. When [Zhūgě] Kè was harmed, his son [Zhūgě] Jiàn fled away, and was by Píng’s division retainers captured, Píng had him released, and he as by another army captured. When Píng’s two female relatives returned to the family, his respectful treatment was excessive in generosity. His conduct and righteousness kind and sincere, was all of this sort.
In the south for over ten years, aged seventy he died. (1) Returning for burial at the old mausoleum, his wives and children were able to return. (2)
- (1) Wú shū states: Fān though was exiled and abandoned, his heart did not forget the state, and he always worried that the Wǔxī should be suppressed, and as Liáodōng was separated by seas, hearing that people had come to submit, yet it was not worth taking, and to now give the people’s wealth to seek horses, was both not to the state’s benefit, and also a fear of no gains. He wished to remonstrate but did not dare, composed a memorial to show Lǚ Dài, [Lǚ] Dài did not report it, he was by a resenter reported, and again exiled to Cāngwú Měnglíng.
- Jiāngbiǎo zhuàn states: Later [Sūn] Quán sent officers and soldiers to reach Liáodōng, on the sea they encountered winds, and many were drowned and lost, [Sūn] Quán regretted it, and then his Order said: “In the past Zhào Jiǎn-zǐ said the various sir’s mumblings were not as good as Zhōu Shě’s honest talk. Yú Fān is bright and upright, good at exhaustive speech, the state’s Zhōu Shě. Formerly if Fān were here, this campaign would not have happened.” He urgently sent down inquiries to Jiāo province, that if Fān was still alive, to give him men and boats, and send him back to the capital; if he were dead, to send the body back to his home prefecture, and have his sons serve as officials. It happened that Fān had already died.
- (2) Kuàijī Diǎnlù states: In Sūn Liàng’s time, there was Shānyīn’s Zhū Yù, when young enjoyed unusual writing characters, all that was special he collected, organizing by form and appearance, compiling unusual characters of over a thousand words. Served the prefecture as Below the Gates Documents Aide.
- The Administrator Púyáng Xīng on the new years day banquet met the officials, speaking [with them] in order, asking: “I the Administrator in the past heard Zhū [Administrator of] Yǐngchuān asked about servicemen to Zhèng Shàogōng, Hán [Administrator of] Wú prefecture asked about servicemen to Liú Shèngbó, Wáng [Lǎng] Jǐngxīng asked about servicemen to Yú [Fān] Zhòngxiáng. I once saw the two answers of Zhèng and Liú but have not seen Zhòngxiáng’s reply. Admiring and hearing of a state worthy, I’ve thought of seeing of seeing his flourishing wonder for many days, does the Documents Aide know of it?” Yù replied saying:
- “I previously memorized it. In the past in Chūpíng’s final years, his governorship Wáng as a profound and wondrous talent was promoted to oversee the prefecture, longed for worthies and commended the good, enjoying selecting out the famed and eminent, and asked Merit Officer Yú Fān saying: ‘One hears jade is produced by Kūnsān, pearls are produced by Nánhǎi. Distant regions and different lands, each produce treasures. Moreover one has heard scholars sigh of and beautify your noble country, of old there were many outstanding eminents, coming from afar to the capital region, only the contained fragrance could not cross. Merit Officer you are refined and enjoy the extensive and ancient, do you know of these people?’ Fān replied saying: ‘Kuàijī above answers to the constellation of Qiānniú, below matches to the seat of Shàoyáng, to the east imbues the vast sea, to the west connects the five lakes, to the south free without barrier, to the north banked by the Zhè and Jiāng, where the southern mountains reside, truly are the province’s defenses, in the past Yǔ gathered [kuài] the various ministers, and therefore by this named it [Kuàijī]. The mountains have abundance of metals and trees and birds and beasts, the rivers have wealth of fish and salt and pearls and clams, the sea’s and peaks’ vital fluids excel at producing the eminent and unusual, and therefore loyal ministers connected paths, filial sons linked villages, below reaching worthy women, to not be infertile.’
- His governorship Wáng laughed and said: ‘The terrain is so; can the names of the servicemen and women all be known?’
- Fān replied saying: ‘One does not dare go so far, so one will only roughly speak of the near. Formerly of filial sons was Gōuzhāng’s Dong Àn, wholeheartedly serving in caring, mourning arrived leading to sorrow, alone in the woods and fields, the birds and beasts submitted to his laments; resenting his parent’s disgraces, in open daylight he took revenge, within the seas heard his name, shining his glory. Grand Central Grandee Shānyīn’s Chén Xiāo, when fishing reformed thieves, when residing then deferred to neighbors, when discovering trespassing moved back the fence, and so achieved righteous reason, taking in and caring for the cart old woman, conduct sufficient to sharpen custm, from Yáng Zǐyún and others send up letter to recommend him, clear and bright passed through the ages. Excellency Commandant Shānyīn’s Excellency Zhèng was pure and bright, direct and straightforward, did not fear the strong’s resistance. Lǔ Chancellor Shānyīn’s Zhōnglí Yì was endowed with unique and special disposition, filial at home and loyal at court, governing counties and administering states, wherever he was leaving benefits, therefore seeking and raising those of nobleman’s character, Lǔ state had the faith of red letter. As for Chén Gōng and Fèi Qí all above upheld heaven’s heart, achievements and virtues governing form, recorded in Hàn’s registers. Having the Way [candidate] Shānyīn’s Zhào Yè, campaign soldier Shàngyú’s Wáng Chōng, each had vast talent and deep virtue, studying the way’s origins, writing books bequeathing elegance, relaying a hundred piān, explaining the former doubts of the classics and traditions, resolving the present age’s knots, perhaps above reaching the mysteries of yīn and yáng, below spreading the returning utmost of human condition. Jiāo province inspector Shàngyú’s Qíwú Jùn, rescued a whole prefecture, declined enfeoffment of rank and territory. Determination Department official Shàngyú’s Mèng Yīng, for three generations died for righteousness. Registrar Gōuzhāng’s Liáng Hóng, Merits Department Scribe Yúyáo’s Sì Xūn, Registrar Gōuzhāng’s Zhèng Yùn, all held to righteousness end and beginning, citing guilt expelled and resided. Below the Gate Commander bandit Yúyáo’s Wǔ Lóng, Registrar Rén Guāng, Zhāng’ān minor official Huáng Tā, personally faced naked blades, saving lord from troubles. Yáng province attending official Gōuzhāng’s Wáng Xiū, devoted self to serve command, bequeathing fame to coming ages. Hénèi Administrator Shàngyú’s Wèi Shǎoyīng, encountering the age defended Jiǎn, forgetting family to worry for the state, ranked among the Eight Eminents, becoming the age’s outstanding and accomplished. Secrtariat Documenter Wūshāng’s Yáng Qiáo, was by Emperor Huán wed to a princess, he declined claiming illness and would not accept. Recently former Excellency Commandant Shàngyú’s Excllency Zhū had heavenly disposition and intelligence bright, venerable enlightenment and divine warfare, strategies without failings, campaigns without remaining worries, and therefore of Heaven’s Under the righteous troops thought to take him as head. Shàngyú woman Cáo É’s father drowned in the Jiāng’s flow, she threw herself into the waters and died, they established a stone stele to record and make manifest her prominence.’
- His governorship Wáng said: ‘It is thus. Yǐngchuān has Cháo’s and Xǔ’s remaining course, Wú has Tàibó’s three refusals, your noble prefecture though has servicemen in multitudes, these are sufficient.’
- Fān replied saying: ‘Therefore I formerly sad these were only the near, if then drawing the matters of higher ages, reaching to men of resistance and integrity, there also were such men. In the past Yuè King Yì yielded throne, fleeing to the caves of Wūshān, the Yuè men smoked him out, was this not comparable to Tàibó? Moreover Tàibó was a lord that came from the outside, not a man of that land. If speaking of those that came, then Dà Yǔ also came to here and was buried here. Yín’s Dàlǐ Huánggōng purified himself in the era of the cruel Qín, Gāozǔ ascended the throne, and could not bring him out, Emperor Huì respectfully yielded, he went out and then relieved the troubles. Campaign soldier Yúyáo’s Yán Zūn was by Wáng Mǎng repeatedly recruited, he resisted in integrity and would not go, in Guāng-Wǔ’s restoration afterward offered office, holding hands he would not bow [accept], his will in the hills cloud and sun. All were written of in transmitted registers, clear and obvious, how are they as Cháo and Xǔ, remaining only in common speech, and not seen in the classics and legacies?’
- His governorship Wáng laughed and said: ‘Excellent speech! The worthies, if not for your explanation, I the administrator would not have previously heard.'”
- His overnorship Púyáng said: “From what the censorate said, it is to hear his person. From then on down, does the Documents Aide remember them?”
- Yù said: “Looking up to shining conduct, dare I not remember them? Recently was Administrator Shàngyú’s Chén Yè, cleansed self and pure conduct, will maintained in frost and snow, chaste and bright faith, also maintaining Liǔxià, encountered Hàn in the middle of decline, left office and abandoned salary, fleeing to Yī and Shè to seek his will, his high and profound subtle traces all under Heaven heard of, and therefore Huán Wénlín was only left a stack of letters, comparable indeed to the three high. As for intelligence and greaty strategy, loyal directness and honest speech, then there were Attendant Censor Yúyáo’s Yú Fān, Assistant General Wūshāng’s Luò Tǒng. As for profound virtue and pure morality, then there was Heir-Apparent’s Junior Tutor Shānyīn’s Kàn Zé, scholarship comprehensive and conduct flourishing, serving as Emperor’s teacher and scholar. As for imposing disposition and martial resolution, establishing achievement in his age, then there was Rear General Hè Qí, merits achieved and accomplishments outstanding. As for exploring the utmost secret techniques, speech uniting with the divine intelligences, then there was Grand Scribe Director Shàngyú’s Wú Fàn. As for servicemen of letters, establishing speech splendid and flourishing, then Censorate Internal Deputy Gōuzhāng’s Rén Yì, Póyáng Administrator Zhāng’ān’s Yú Xiáng, each spread literary orders, sparkling like spring glory. Resident scholar Mào Lúxù, his younger brother violated public statues, he killed himself as substitution. Wúníng’s Sī Dūn, Shānyīn’s Qí Gēng, Shàngyú’s Fán Zhèng, all substituted their fathers’ death penalty. As for women then there were Sōngyáng’s Liǔ Zhū, Yǒngníng’s Dí Sù, one sacrificing to uphold integrity, losing self without looking back, one encountering bandit thieves, dying to not defile conduct. All are affairs of recent times, still in ears and eyes.”
- His governorship said: “All are the outstanding within the seas. I heard in Qín Shǐhuáng’s Twenty-Fifth year [220 BC], he had Wú and Yuè become Kuàijī prefecture, capital at Wú. Hàn enfeoffed it to the various lords and kings, in what years was it reverted to a prefecture, and divided to govern it thus?”
- Yù replied saying: “Liú Jiǎ became King of Jīng, Jiǎ was by Yīng Bù killed, and also Liú Bì became King of Wú. Emperor Jǐng’s Fourth Year [153 BC], [Liú] Bì rebelled and was executed, and then it was reverted to a prefecture, capital at Wú. Yuándīng Fifth Year, [112 BC] expelled the eastern Yuè, and therefore had this land become the capital, all subordinate to here, but establishing an eastern part commandant, later moved to Zhāng’ān. Yángshuò Inaugural Year [24 BC], again moved capital to Yín, there were some bandit troubles, again moved to Gōuzhāng. Arriving at Yǒngjiàn Fourth Year , his governorship Liú sent up letter, to have Zhèjiáng on north become Wú prefecture, Kuàijī returning capital to Shānyīn. From Yǒngjiàn Fourth Year, the year was a Jǐsì, reaching to this year, it has accumulated one hundred twenty nine years.”
- His governorship declared “excellent!”
- That year was Wú’s Tàipíng Third Year, the year a Dīngchǒu. Yù later served the Court, always in the Terrace Pavilion, became East Watchtower Director, distantly appointed Qīnghé Administrator, added rank as Attendant Internal, investigated divination, many writings and arts understood.
Fān had eleven sons, the fourth son Sì was the most famed, at Yǒng’ān’s beginning, from Selections Department Cadet he became Cavalier Internal Regular Attendant, later became Supervisor of the Army Envoy, suppressed Fú Yán, of illness died. (1) Sì’s younger brothers Zhōng was Yídū Administrator; (2) Sǒng was Surpassing Cavalary Colonel, gradually promoted to Minister of Justice, Xiāngdōng and Héjiān Administrator; (3) Bǐng was Minister of Justice Secretariat Documenter, Jǐyīn Administrator. (4)
- (1) Kuàijī Diǎnlù states: Sì appellation Shìhóng was born in Nánhǎi, aged sixteen years, his father died, returned to his [registered] hometown. Sūn Chēn deposed the young ruler [Sūn Liàng], and welcomed and enthroned King of Lángyé [Sūn] Xiū. [Sūn] Xiū had not yet arrived, [Sūn] Chēn wished to enter the palace, plotting to act errant, summoning the hundred officials of meet to discuss, all were firghtened and lost color, only agreeing and nothing more. Sì replied saying: “Your enlightened excellency is the state’s Yī [Yǐn] and Zhōu [gōng], occpying the ranks of generals and ministers, wielding the power to depose and enthrone, about to above secure the ancestral temple and below comfort the hundred surnames, large and small are eager for Yi [Yǐn] and Huò Guāng] are again to be seen. Now the welcomed king has not yet arrived, yet you wish to enter the palace, if it is so, the varous subordinates will be shaken, the masses on hearing will be confused, it is not how to forever to the end be loyal and filial, raising fame for later generations.” [Sūn] Chēn was not pleased, indeed enthroned [Sūn] Xiū. When [Sūn] Xiū first succeeded the throne, Sì with Hè Shào, Wáng Fán, Xuē Yíng all became Cavalier Internal Regular Attendants, for the achievement of suppressing Fúyán was appointed Jiāo province Inspector, Crowning Army General, Yúyáo marquis, then died.
- (2) Kuàijī Diǎnlù states: Zhōng appellation Shìfāng was Fān’s fifth son. Chaste and firm in handlin affairs, enjoyed remembering people, met Wú prefecture’s Lù Jī in years of childhood, praised Shàngyú’s Wèi Qiān at his beginning in obscurity, in the end they all reached far, becoming famed servicemen. He befriended the same county’s Wáng Qí of an isolated clan, his servce advanced first to reach Yìdū Administator, Zhōng then succeeded him. Jìn campaigned against Wú, Zhōng with Yídào Supervisor Lù Yàn, Yàn’s younger brother Zhōngxià Commander Jǐng firmly defended and would not submit, the city was breached and they came to harm.
- Zhōng’s son Tán appellation Sī’ào. Jìn Yángqiū appraises Tán as pure and having restraint on conduct, outside seeming deferential and weak, inside firm and upright with guts and courage. Served Jìn, successively ranked inside and outside, ending as Guard General, posthumously titled Attendant Internal Left Merit Grandee, Opening Office Ceremonies equal to Three Excellencies.
- (3) Kuàijī Diǎnlù states: Sǒng appellation Shìlóng was Fān’s sixth son. Pure and without desires, advancing and withdrawing y propriety, in Wú was successively a pure official, entered Jìn, sent out as Héjiān Chancellor, Wáng Sù heard Sǒng’s reputation, generously respected him. Sǒng drew out people, attending to those in seclusion and obscurity. At the time Wáng Qí criticized Sǒng, believing that the attainment of high servicemen certainly coincided with the refined and unusual. Sǒng’s letter with his cousin’s son Chá said: “The era in attaining servicemen, not once recruits the not yet toothed [mature] in the hills and parks or searches for good talents in the humble and rustic, those acclaimed are already successful, those defamed already ruined, this is why I sigh [in despair].” Sǒng hated that the customs of funeral and sacrifice were without limit, when his younger brother Bǐng died, he sacrificed with lesser liestock, liquor and food and nothing more, at the time his clan and associates all followed this.
- (4) Kuàijī Diǎnlù states: Bǐng appellation Shìwén was Fān’s eight son. When young he had elegant will, served Wú as Yellow Gate Cadet, for quick replies was seen as exceptional, increased appointment to Secretariat Documenter Attendant Internal. The Jìn army came to attack, sent Bǐng Wielding Staff as Regional Commander of Wǔchāng and upstream’s various military affairs, Bǐng first sent up and returned his staff and canopy and seal and ribbon, and afterward surrendered. At Jǐyīn he restrained the strong and supported the weak, extremely known for authoritative presence.