Sun Xia 孫夏 was a member of the Yellow Turbans. In 184 AD he became leader of the Yellow Turban forces at Wan city in Nanyang commandery following several successions. He fought the imperial forces led by Zhu Jun 朱儁 and his Major Sun Jian 孫堅.


Sun Xia's home of record was Nanyang commandery, Jing Province.[1] Between the early 170’s and 184 AD he joined the religious leader Zhang Jue 張角 and took part in his plot to overthrow the Han. Zhang Jue amassed over 360.000 followers from eight provinces and divided them into thirty-six Divisions (方). Each with their own leader. At this point Sun Xia was an ordinary member of the Yellow Turban army and took orders from leader Zhang Mancheng 張曼成, who was stationed in Nanyang commandery.

When Zhang Mancheng was killed following a successful attack on Wan city in Nanyang commandery he was succeeded by Zhao Hong 趙弘, who was picked by Zhang Mancheng’s remnant forces.[3]

Zhao Hong managed to hold out for two months against Zhu Jun’s army but was ultimately killed and lost his head in battle.[4] Han Zhong 韓忠 was then chosen to succeed him. Zhu Jun’s forces managed to lure him out of the vicinity and killed him.[5]

Sun Xia was now chosen to succeed as leader of the remnant forces. He led his forces to camp in Wan city once more, but experienced fierce attacks from Zhu Jun. Early January 185 a Major of Zhu Jun, Sun Jian, led his troops and was first to climb the city walls. On 11 January he and Zhu Jun stormed the city. Sun Xia attempted to escape, but was chased by Zhu Jun’s forces. The imperial forces caught up with Sun Xia at the Jing hills in Xi’e county, where he was defeated and killed alongside several thousand of his soldier.[2]

See alsoEdit


  • Sun Xia’s biography shows many similarities with that of the fictional Sun Zhong 孫仲. Both fought at Wan and have the same family name however unlike Sun Zhong, Sun Xia was not killed by Liu Bei 劉備.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 de Crespigny, A Biographical Dictionary of Later Han to the Three Kingdoms, biography of Sun Xia, page 777
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 de Crespigny, Emperor Huan and Emperor Ling, Zhongping 1
  3. de Crespigny, A Biographical Dictionary, biography of Zhang Mancheng, page 1068
  4. de Crespigny, A Biographical Dictionary, biography of Zhao Hong page 1098
  5. de Crespigny, A Biographical Dictionary, biography of Han Zhong, page 305