Did Qinshihuang find a ready-made bargain to unify the six Kingdoms?

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In the famous six kingdoms, Su Xun believed that the collapse of the six kingdoms lies in the six kingdoms themselves, not the Qin state. In fact, it was not the state of Qin or the six kingdoms that led to the end of the Warring States period, but the fatigue of history. The protagonist who decides the history is the aphasia public raped by historians. After centuries of sabre and sword attacks in the spring and Autumn period and the Warring States period, the people hated scuffle and longed for reunification. It was under the influence of such a powerful undercurrent that the state of Qin sought a big bargain. In the outline of national history, Mr. Qian Mu said: “Qin was merged into six countries, and China embarked on the road of national reunification for the first time in history. This is not only because of the dangerous terrain of Qin and the strength of its troops, but also because of the general intention at that time.”

Qin was originally a remote western tribe. Its distant ancestors were good at taming animals and driving cars, and they were relatively backward in all aspects. Although they were quite powerful later, they were still regarded as Rong and di by the Central Plains countries and were not qualified to participate in the league. People at that time called Qin “a beast” in fear, and compared Qin’s ruthless expansion to “nibbling”.

Those who are isolated are always easy to put satellites. Just as historian Bo Yang described it: “this remote and small country, which is the most backward and the least noticeable, has broken into the international community like a bull who broke into a porcelain shop, shocking all countries.”

In the early days of the seven heroes’ campaign, the Han, Zhao and Wei families formed an alliance, defeated the Qi, Qin, Chu and other big countries, and became a more powerful country. Later, infighting broke out. Not only did the alliance break up, but the member states also killed each other.

Wei was the “big brother” in the early Warring States period. Before the establishment of the Kingdom, it appeared as a hegemon and dominated the international stage for more than 60 years. The state of Wei has a favorable geographical position. It is located in the heart of China and the Central Plains. It has the most fertile cultivated land, so its national income is above that of other countries. Weisi, the founder of the state, was also very proud of this: “the mountains and rivers are so dangerous, which is the treasure of the state of Wei.” The strength of Wei also benefited from three outstanding people: one was Prime Minister Li Li; One is Ximen leopard; One is Wuqi. When Li Li was Prime Minister, he enacted laws and adjusted taxes to keep social order stable for a long time. Ximen leopard set up irrigation projects to enrich the economy. Wuqi guarded the Xihe River, like Mount Tai pressing down on the top of the mountain. If he was given another ten years, the Qin parliament might be nibbled away by him. However, Wei Jun’s sensitivity was not developed enough. He frequently selected other countries to attack, but did not pay attention to Qin. As a result, an oversight not only gave Qin an opportunity to expand, but also destroyed himself.

The army of the state of Wei first aimed at the state of Zhao. The state of Zhao asked the state of Qi to help retreat. large


Sun Bin led the army directly to attack the capital of Wei. The army of the state of Wei had already conquered the capital of the state of Zhao. Hearing that his country was in a critical situation, he hurried to withdraw from the state of Zhao to save the state of Wei. Just halfway there, he met the army of the state of Qi in ambush. The army of the state of Qi blocked the army of the state of Wei and won a great victory. This is the famous example of war in Chinese history – “encircling Wei and rescuing Zhao”.

Two years later, the state of Wei attacked South Korea, and the state of Qi played the role of “peacekeeping”. Sun Bin repeated his old trick and commanded the Qi army to encircle Wei and save Han. Qi Jun pretended to retreat. On the first day after the evacuation, the stove left in the camp was enough to cook for 100000 people; The stove left the next day was only enough to cook for 50000 people; The number of stoves left on the third day was reduced to only enough to cook for 30000 people. Based on the number of stoves, Wei Jun thought that the Qi army had fled in large numbers, so he selected elite soldiers to chase after the Qi army, all the way to Maling (present-day Henan Province), and was completely defeated by the Qi army ambushing here. This is the famous “battle of Maling”.

In fact, the state of Wei was unlucky because it used a historical villain pangjuan. Pangjuan and Sun Bin were both disciples of Guiguzi. They had a good relationship when they were students. Pangjuan left her teacher first and became a general of the state of Wei. At first, she recommended Sun Bin to Weisi, the monarch of the state of Wei, with pure friendship. However, pangjuan soon found that Sun Bin’s talent was far more than his own, and he might be appreciated by the monarch and seize his position. He decided to use the means of unjust imprisonment to eliminate Sun Bin. Therefore, he ordered people to report Sun Bin’s rebellion, which was “well-documented”. Then he pleaded again and again with hypocrisy. Emperor Wei sicai reluctantly pardoned Sun Bin’s death, but still cut off his feet to prevent him from escaping. From then on, Sun Bin could not walk, he could only crawl on the ground. Pangjuan didn’t kill him because he wanted him to write a military art taught by Guiguzi in his memory. Sun Bin thanked his old friend for saving his life. Of course, he was willing to write. But in the middle of it, he found the framed


Pretending to be crazy, laughing and laughing are impermanent, and sometimes even eating excrement and urine. When pangjuan’s guard was a little lax, Sun Bin fled back to his motherland, the state of Qi, and became a military division of the state of Qi. He could not ride a horse during the war, so he sat in a special car to command.

The second invasion in the state of Wei


Pangjuan and Sun Bin met as military divisions of both sides. After the defeat of the Wei army, Wei Shen, the commander, was captured and committed suicide. Pangjuan was led under a big tree that said “pangjuan died here” in the dark. When he ordered the guards to light a torch to see what was written on it, thousands of arrows were fired at him and he was killed. Pangjuan didn’t feel ashamed of his unjust acts before he died. Instead, he accused Sun Bin of becoming famous by chance.

After the two campaigns, the state of Qi replaced the state of Wei to dominate the Central Plains. Qi, which has gained momentum, is not a fuel-efficient lamp. It always likes to covet its neighbors.

In 314 B.C., King Xuan of Qi took advantage of the internal turmoil in Yan and sent troops to advance. The civil strife in Yan Kingdom originated from the imitation of the system of abdication. Ji Kuai, king of the state of Yan, was a muddleheaded man. He humbly stepped down from the throne and gave the throne to his minister, Zizhi. He was willing to be a minister. Although Zizhi took the throne, he could not control the situation. Another minister, Ji Ping, and Ji Kuai’s son, successively rebelled, leaving Jicheng, the capital, in a scuffle. During his three years in office, the civil war lasted three years and tens of thousands of people died.

The Qi army invaded the territory of Yan Kingdom, occupied Ji city without any resistance, and defeated all the troops in the scuffle. Ji Kuai and Zi died together in the chaos. King Xuan of Qi declared triumphantly: “a country with tenthousand chariots will attack a country with tenthousand chariots. It will be conquered in only fifty days.”

However, the people of Yan are extremely patriotic. Two years later, the newly rising civil forces expelled the Qi army and established crown prince Ji Ping to succeed the king. In order to avenge one arrow, the king of Yan Zhao, Ren Leyi, as a senior general, United Qin, Chu and other countries to attack Qi on a large scale. In only half a year, the Allied forces captured most of the territory of Qi except Ju and Jimo, and nearly subjugated the country. After that, Tian Dan, the grand general of the state of Qi, based on the two cities, defeated Yan army under the city with a few victories. Only then did the state of Qi avoid the disaster of national subjugation. Tian Dan used his newly invented secret weapon “fire cow array” to scare away the enemy. The fire cow array is to tie a sharp blade to the horn of an ox, and then burn its tail. This group of cows with their tails on fire became countless tanks and rushed into the Yan army camp. Yan army was frightened by this weapon that had never been seen before and was defeated in a flash. The defeat of the Yan army was like a chain avalanche. The people of the kingdom of Qi responded and attacked the Yan army. Within a few days, all the occupying forces of the Yan kingdom were driven away. This was a famous miracle victory in history, but in the five-year war, Qi suffered heavy losses and suffered a great loss of strength, falling from the status of a superpower. From then on, there was only one hegemony – the hegemony of the Qin Kingdom. Only because the state of Qi was far away from the state of Qin did it not perish immediately.

The state of Qin, suppressed and despised by the state of Wei all the time, held back its breath in obscurity: sit big! Sit up! Although the depressed Qin King Ying Quliang presided over a poor and small country, he always maintained an ambitious state. He believed that “talent determines destiny” and was eager for talents. Fortunately, he met gongsunyang, a political confidant.

Gongsunyang is a member of the Wei Kingdom, but the Wei Kingdom pool is too small to accommodate this big fish. So he went to the state of Wei to “float” and worked under the Prime Minister of the state of Wei, uncle Cuo. Uncle CuO appreciated him very much. Unfortunately, he didn’t have time to recommend him to the king of Wei, but Uncle CuO fell ill. The king of Wei went to visit him in person. Uncle CuO said, “gongsunyang is ten times more talented than me. After my death, please hand over the State Administration to him. The future of Wei lies in him.” The king of Wei was shocked. Later, gongshucuo said, “if your majesty can’t use gongsunyang, please kill him and don’t let him leave the country. Once he is recruited by other countries, it will become the biggest trouble of Wei.” After leaving the house, the king of Wei said to his left and right: “Uncle CuO is seriously ill and has been incoherent. He even taught me to hand over the power of the country to gongsunyang. After a while, he taught me to kill him.” Minister Wei ang knew gongsunyang’s talent and recommended it to the king of Wei, who laughed it off.

Gongsunyang, who was unemployed, decided to go to the state of Qin for a break. At this time, I happened to see the recruitment notice of the king of Qin and applied. During the interview, Ying Quliang met gongsunyang very late. Gongsunyang told Ying Quliang, “you can’t doubt a knowledge


? Doubting a measure will never succeed. A man of insight will be rejected by the world. Don’t talk about making progress with foolish people, just let them see the rich harvest. A highly intelligent view is different from the secular view. Those who have made great achievements only conspire with a few people and do not seek the opinions of the majority. The only way to make the country strong and prosperous is through thorough reform. ” Yingquliang handed over the power to the new man and ordered him to carry out reform according to his plans and steps.

Through Shang Yang’s reform, Qin gradually got rid of the semi barbaric state and evolved from a dwarf to a giant. In about 19 years, the state of Qin was a hundred times stronger than the state of Wei, which had always despised it.

A large number of fugitive peasants who had been ravaged by the war for too long and people with lofty ideals with knowledge and skills in the Central Plains countries, tired and helpless of the scuffle, took refuge in the quietly blooming state of Qin. Whether it is heaven or hell, in this last resting place or foothold, the tired people in troubled times are eager for the final end. With a large population, a large number of talents and an adequate supply of troops, the state of Qin instantly had a strong fighting capacity. At the same time, after years of fighting and slaughtering, all the other six countries were unable to resist Qin alone in the late Warring States period.

When modern economists were complacent that they invented a new term game to explain market competition, as early as the late Warring States period, our prophetic ancestors had made great use of it. The six countries adopted a joint and vertical strategy and alliance between the weak and the weak, but they fell apart and failed repeatedly at the critical moment because of the lack of unity of mind; The independent Qin Dynasty adopted a horizontal strategy, alienated the left and the right, cooperated flexibly, took the opportunity to dismantle the bridge, and succeeded frequently. As the saying goes, “fortresses are easiest to break from within.”. This game of separation and combination made Qin a big winner in history.

In the face of the suddenly powerful state of Qin, the six countries were definitely not in the mood to appreciate Schwarzenegger’s strong muscles, because their ears were full of the crackling sound of warm-up bones before boxing. The six kingdoms regretted that they had not been alert to the sharpening of the state of Qin before.

Learning from the bitter experience, the six countries decided to unite to resist the Qin state. In the decision-making process of the six heads of state, taking Qin as the object, two new but just tit for tat strategic ideas and foreign policies emerged. These two kinds of policies were put forward by two strategists, Su Qin and Zhang Yi, who were born among the common people. Su Qin once united with “people from all over the world gathered in Zhao and wanted to attack Qin” (“Warring States strategy ยท Qin strategy III”). He lobbied the princes of the six countries to unite to fight Qin in the West. Qin is in the west, and the land of the six countries is connected from north to south, so it is called hezong. Zhang Yi once lobbied the six countries to serve Qin together. Qin is in the west, the six kingdoms are in the East, and the East and the West are connected, so it is called Lianheng.

Suqin has the character of Jizi. He came from a poor family and has few ambitions. He once followed Guiguzi to learn lobbying. According to the records of the historian, “the East was taught by Qi, and learned from Mr. Guigu.” After learning, he lobbied Zhou, Qin, Zhao and other countries, but they were not used. He suffered many difficulties and setbacks and had to go home. The wife who was weaving saw her husband who had been away for a long time come back from poverty and didn’t even move. Suqin asked his sister-in-law, who was cooking, for food. Her sister-in-law pretended not to hear. His wife and sister-in-law secretly blamed him for not doing his job: “the custom of the people of the Eastern Zhou Dynasty is to manage their family’s industry, devote themselves to industry and commerce, and earn one or two tenths of the profits. But he has abandoned his roots and engaged in tongue playing. Shouldn’t he be poor?” Suqin was greatly stimulated by these words. So he studied furiously, got the Yin Fu, a Book of Zhou Dynasty, and understood the mystery of how to invest in the good of the Lord, leaving behind the eternal story of “stabbing the stock with a cone”. He “stabbed the stock with a bow and a cone, and the blood flowed to his feet” (Warring States policy – Qin policy I).

After his success in learning, Su Qin once again embarked on the journey of lobbying other countries. Su Qin knew that the state of Qin had no intention of using him, so he went to the east to lobby the six countries. Su Qin first came to the state of Zhao, but he was disappointed again. He was not discouraged and headed for the state of Yan. In Yan state, Suqin’s lobbying was finally valued by Yan Wengong. Yan Wengong subsidized Suqin and then went to the state of Zhao to tell Marquis Zhao about Suqin’s plans. Marquis Zhao accepted Suqin’s lobbying this time, worshipped him as a prime minister, and sent him as a “commander in chief” to lobby other countries to unite against Qin. After lobbying by Su and Qin, the six states of Zhao, Chu, Qi, Wei, Han and Yan concluded a vertical alliance treaty. Su and Qin were also worshipped as the Prime Minister of the six states, forming a vertical alliance against Qin.

The first vertical confrontation broke out in 333 BC. The state of Qin made concessions to the state of Wei and was willing to return the seven cities in Xiangling (Xiangfen, Shanxi), which had occupied the state of Wei. Those seven cities are 80 kilometers away from Anyi (Xiaxian County, Shanxi), the former capital of the state of Wei. They are the most needed barriers for defense. If they can be recovered, the capital can be put back. The state of Wei could not resist this temptation, so it agreed to break away from collusion. And in order to expand the land, they also launched attacks on the state of Zhao. Encouraged by the state of Qin, the state of Qi thought that the land could be divided from the state of Zhao, so it joined the state of Wei. Although the armies of the two countries were repulsed by the state of Zhao, the first alliance of joint confrontation collapsed after only one year. Su Qin could not explain the rebellion between Wei and Qi in the state of Zhao, so he had to go to the state of Yan and serve as the Prime Minister of the state of Yan.

In 318 B.C., the second vertical confrontation came into being. This time, King Huai of Chu served as the commander of the vertical confrontation, and assembled the Allied forces of the five countries to attack Hangu pass, an important town on the eastern border of the Qin Kingdom. It was a massive military operation, and everyone expected that a big war would break out. However, when the king of Qin opened the door and closed the door, the Allied forces were shocked by the prestige of the Qin army and looked at each other. No one dared to attack first. After a few days of stalemate, the Chu regiment was cut off by the Qin Kingdom, and was the first to retreat in panic. The armies of the other five countries also hurriedly pulled out their camps and returned home, and the alliance collapsed again.

In 306 BC, Chu, Qi and Korea concluded a third alliance of vertical confrontation. However, just after the signing of the alliance, King Huai of Chu changed his mind for the first time. King Ying Ji of Qin invited him to a private meeting in Huangji to return the previously occupied land to the kingdom of Chu. King Huai of Chu was very satisfied with this diplomatic victory, and the alliance collapsed immediately.

As the second volume of Zizhitongjian commented: the maximization of national self-interest does not automatically lead to the maximization of collective interest. When Su Qin lobbied for cooperation, he didn’t have a blueprint for cooperation. At least he didn’t use a blueprint when he lobbied for various countries. Although it is the common interest of the six countries, the costs and risks borne by each country may not be the same. Su and Qin urged them to put their own interests first rather than emphasize the collective interests of the six countries. One of the important reasons for the collapse of the joint venture was that Su Qin tried his best to promote the joint venture while ignoring the discussion on the long-term operation mode after the joint venture.

The failure of vertical cooperation is directly reflected in the horizontal resolution of Zhang Yi, another master of Guiguzi. As one teacher, we can only say that Zhang Yi is good at psychology and has a better understanding of cooperative psychology than Su Qin: in the face of interests, cooperation always tends to bow to temptation.

Zhang Yi was born in Wei, a classmate and friend of Suqin, and a poor scholar. In 338 B.C., Zhang Yi served the motherland with enthusiasm. As a result, she was rejected by the king of Wei. She only went to the state of Chu to develop and was rejected again. I had no choice but to be a guest at Zhaoyang gate, Lingyin of the state of Chu. Once, Zhaoyang held a banquet in honor of a group of officials. At the end of the banquet, when he was showing off the “jade Bi” praised by the king of Chu, the weather suddenly changed. The group of bureaucrats broke away from the open-air banquet to take shelter from the rain. In a panic, they passed around the jade Bi and disappeared. Ling Yin was furious and ordered to investigate. In order to express themselves to the diners, the newcomer Zhang Yi became a scapegoat. Zhang Yi could not tolerate such unwarranted humiliation. After arguing, she was deported.

Zhang Yi then decided to take refuge in her classmate and friend Suqin. Unexpectedly, when she saw Suqin, he was arrogant and unreasonable. Zhang Yi was quite angry after this cold reception. Angrily scolded: “I learned from your classmate for several years that you are such a complacent villain! In that case, breaking off friendship is!” After that, he walked away.

Zhang Yi became more and more angry and decided to confront Suqin and retaliate against him. He tried again and again to target the state of Qin, so that his conspiracy could not succeed. At that time, the state of Qin was in an isolated position and was really at a loss. But Zhang Yi was so down and out that she could not even afford to travel to the state of Qin. I was worried and ran into a noble man, zhaoguoda and jiasheren. With a few greetings, Sheren was indignant and willing to help out. Zhang Yi can’t wait to be grateful. With money, he successfully completed the interview. King Wen of Qin had a good impression and worshiped him as Shangqing. Sheren accompanied her all the way. When she left, Zhang Yi said sincerely, “I owe you a great debt of gratitude, and I left in a hurry. Won’t it make me feel guilty all my life?” Sheren said, “everything depends on the arrangements made by the Soviet prime minister. I’m just an executor.” Only then did Zhang Yi realize that Su Qin had indirectly helped him to gain wealth and deficiency by using the method of motivating generals. Immediately made a commitment: “report back to Su Xiang, I will never make Qin invade Zhao on the first day of Qin!” Zhang Yiguo was a man of faith. He never encouraged the king of Qin to take the initiative to violate Zhao, but Su Qin himself took the initiative to leave Zhao, as shown above.

In fact, according to Zizhi Tongjian, Su Qin helped Zhang Yi find a job in qiangqin not only out of personal feelings, but also to take advantage of Zhang Yi’s checks and balances on Qin and gain valuable time for his great cause.

One day in 313 BC, as an envoy of the state of Qin, Zhang Yi came to the state of Chu and said to King Huai, “the king of Qin is willing to form a brotherly country with the king. If the king can break off diplomatic ties with the state of Qi, the state of Qin is willing to offer 600 li of land, and the two countries will be reconciled forever.” King Huai of Chu was very happy to hear this, so he agreed and sent an emissary to the state of Qin with Zhang Yi to accept the land. However, as soon as she entered the territory of the state of Qin, Zhang Yi pretended to fall off the car and refused to meet the envoys of the state of Chu. When King Huai of Chu saw that the king of Qin was reluctant to offer the land, he thought that the king of Qin was worried that the severance of diplomatic relations between Chu and Qi was not complete, so he sent people north to scold the king of Qi. Angered, the king of Qi resolutely broke off diplomatic relations with the state of Chu and established an alliance with the state of Qin. When the Chu emissary asked Zhang Yi for land again, Zhang Yi said, “there is no land of 600 Li for you. You must have heard wrong. It is only six li wide.” King Huai of Chu found that he had been deceived and decided to attack Qin. As a result, he was attacked by Qin and Qi, and the state of Chu was defeated. Then, in the battle of Lantian, Chu was defeated by Qin.

The king of Qin declared to a large extent that he would not take any retaliation, and was still willing to continue reconciliation, and proposed to exchange 600 li of Commerce in the region (from Danfeng, Shaanxi to Xixia, Henan) for 600 Li in the central Guizhou region of the king of Chu. King Huai of Chu hated Zhang Yi to the bone marrow. He replied to King Qin, “I don’t want to exchange Shang Yu, just exchange Zhang Yi.” The king of Qin refused, but Zhang Yi said he was willing to exchange. King Qin said, “King Huai of Chu will kill you.” Zhang Yi said, “if you kill me, the country will get 600 Li in Central Guizhou. It’s worth dying. Besides, King Huai of Chu can’t kill me.” As soon as Zhang Yi arrived in the state of Chu, King Huai of Chu put him in prison, ready to choose a good day to execute. Zhang Yi’s strategy, bribery, generates strength in due course. Zheng Xiu, the most beloved beauty of King Huai of Chu, wept at him and said, “Zhang Yi is the Prime Minister of the state of Qin and the most powerful think tank of the king of Qin. If you kill him rashly, the kingdom of Qin will not give up. Once the army is in danger, my child and I will die without a burial place. It is better to escape south one day earlier to avoid being humiliated by the Qin army.” Jin Shang, the most trusted eunuch of King Huai of Chu, also secretly suggested: “each of the ministers is his own master, and he has no gratitude or resentment. After killing Zhang Yi, there is only one person left in the state of Qin, but we will lose 600 Li in Central Guizhou.” After considering the result, King Huai of Chu decided to release Zhang Yi and made good friends with Zhang Yi.

This is a microcosm of Zhang Yi’s use of the horizontal policy to help the king of Qin alienate the alliance of the enemy countries and expand the power of the state of Qin. Jing Chun, a man of insight at that time, once commented on Zhang Yi: “when you are angry, you will be afraid of the princes. If you live in peace, you will rest in the world.”

After the kingdom of Qin had been rewarded again and again, its aggression against the eastern countries was even more fierce, which made all the countries exhausted and lost the strength of the last counter attack.

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