Sanguo zhi pinghua
Part A, page 8
Zhang Fei meets the Yellow Turbans
Zhang Fei encounters Yellow Turbans - SGZ PH 8
The scout came back and reported: “The forces of the traitors are very powerful. Most of the traitors are in Xiqing prefecture, Yan Province. 500,000 traitors are located at two places. 300,000 of them are in Yan Province. 12.5 kilometers away from the Yan Province, two leaders are at the Xinglin villa. One is Zhang Bao,[1] another one is Zhang Biao.[2] They lead 20,000 soldiers.” The marshal gave the vanguard 50,000 soldiers to determine the actual situation in Xiqing Fu. Liu Bei said: “I don’t need 50,000 soldiers. I only need my own 3,500 soldiers.” Then [Liu Bei] led his soldiers camped at Rencheng Prefecture. Next, the marshal led the main forces and camped at Rencheng prefecture as well.

The marshal asked the officers again about which person could go to detect the traitors’ actual situation, and summon them to surrender. Liu Bei said: “Bei would love to go as a vanguard.” Immediately, the marshal sent him the edict of pardon. Liu Bei received the edict, bid farewell to the marshal. Then he led his soldiers to the east gate of Rencheng Prefecture, swam across the river and headed to Ban village. Xuande asked: “How far is it from here to Xinglin villa?” “Around 6 kilometers.” Xuande asked the soldiers: “Who is willing to summon Zhang Biao to surrender in Xinglin villa with the edict of pardon?” Zhang Fei responded: “Fei is willing to go.” Liu Bei asked: “How many soldiers do you need?” Fei answered: “I don’t need any soldiers. Fei will go to summon Zhang Biao to surrender in Xinglin villa with the edict of pardon all by myself.”

Zhang Fei departed to Xinglin villa alone with a horse. The guards at the gate couldn’t stop him. Fei went straight to the praetorian tent, where he halted his horse, and rested his lance across his waist. Over fifty people were sitting in the tent. Zhang Biao was sitting in the middle. Over five hundreds of soldiers around the tent got their lances ready warily. Zhang Biao and everyone was shocked. Zhang Biao asked: “Who are you? Are you a scout?” Zhang Fei answered: “I am not a scout. I am just an ordinary soldier in the vanguard’s army, under the command of the marshal of the Han. I’m here not for myself, but to summon you to surrender with the imperial edict of pardon from the emperor. Even though you conspired treasons and killed officials sent by the Son of the Heaven,[3] you will all be pardoned. If you surrender to the Han, remove your yellow turban, and raise your flag for the country, your sons and wife will be ennobled, and you will be awarded a high position with great prizes. If you don’t surrender, I will slaughter you all!”

Zhang Biao ordered soldiers to get Fei immediately, raging about Fei’s words. All the soldiers rushed forward to attack Fei. Fei didn’t even take a look. He swept the enemies who were within the circle of his attack range, only with the tip of his four meters long lance. Nobody could approach him. Countless lances were snapped. The traitors were all startled and made room for Fei when they heard his yell. Fei alone with his horse went across the traitors’ campsite freely and nobody dared to block him. Suddenly, the traitors heard the sounds of gongs and drums. Zhang Biao saw a person coming to the tent and reported: “A disaster, Your Majesty!” Zhang Biao asked: “What disaster?” “The vanguard army of the Han divided into six troops with five hundred soldiers each. With wildly sounding gongs and drums, they are waving their flags and yelling. And they just burst into our camp!” Zhang Biao immediately summoned some traitors and fled to the direction to Yan Province. The Han army was chasing after them around 20 kilometers.[4]

Xuande retreated his army, camped at Xinglin villa. Xuande ordered soldiers to guard the gate and checked on his officials. He asked where the traitors went. The officials answered: “The traitors all entered the city of Yan Province. They abandoned the seniors and children. And we killed them all.” Afterwards, Xuande wrote a report and sent it to the marshal, asking him to come to Xinglin villa. The marshal was very pleased to see the report. He led his army to Xinglin villa right away. Liu Bei received and seated the marshal in the tent and set up a banquet. The marshal made an order that all the officials of the marshal’s army and the vanguard’s army would be rewarded. During the banquet, a scout came and reported in front of the tent: “After Zhang Biao went to Yan Province, his army joined Zhang Bao’s army. Their forces are growing.” Hearing this, the marshal made a command: “Who is going to take over Yan Province?” Xuande responded: “Liu Bei is willing to go.” The marshal was very pleased: “According to the scout, the traitors’ forces are powerful. It is difficult for a few to defeat a crowd. You’d better go with more soldiers.” Bei said: “I don’t need many soldiers. Only my ordinary officials are more than enough.” The marshal said: “Then just be careful!”

Xuande bid farewell to the marshal, led his troops to Yan Province with the edict of pardon. They camped around four kilometers away from Yan Province. Xuande asked: “Who is willing to summon Zhang Biao and Zhang Bao to surrender?”

SGZ Pinghua page 08










  1. note: incorrectly written as 張宝 in SGZ Pinghua. His real name was 張寶. Though 宝and 寶 are both romanized as 'Bao'.
  2. note: Zhang Biao is the SGZ Pinghua equivalent of Zhang Liang.
  3. note: the Son of Heaven is the emperor.
  4. note: fifty lis.
  5. note: originally written as 張宝.

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