Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period
The Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period was an era of political upheaval in 10th-century Imperial China. Five states succeeded one another in the Central Plain, more than a dozen concurrent states were established elsewhere in South China, it was the last prolonged period of multiple political division in Chinese imperial history. Traditionally, the era started with the fall of the Tang dynasty in 907 AD and ended with the founding of the Song dynasty in 960. Many states had been de facto independent kingdoms long before 907. After the Tang had collapsed, the kings who controlled the Central plain crowned themselves as emperors. War between kingdoms occurred to gain control of the central plain for legitimacy and over the rest of China; the last of the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms states, the Northern Han, was not vanquished until 979. Towards the end of the Tang, the imperial government granted increased powers to the jiedushi, the regional military governors; the An Lushan and Huang Chao Rebellion weakened the imperial government, by the early 10th century the jiedushi commanded de facto independence from its authority.
In the last decades of the dynasty, they were not appointed by the court any more, but developed hereditary systems, from father to son or from patron to protégé. They had their own armies rivalling the "palace armies" and amassed huge wealth, as testified by their sumptuous tombs, thus ensued the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period. North China Zhu Wen at Bianzhou, precursor to Later Liang Li Keyong and Li Cunxu at Taiyuan, precursor to Later Tang Liu Rengong and Liu Shouguang at Youzhou, precursor to Yan Li Maozhen at Fengxiang, precursor to Qi Luo Shaowei at Weibo Wang Rong at Zhenzhou Wang Chuzhi at Dingzhou South China Yang Xingmi at Yangzhou, precursor to Wu Qian Liu at Hangzhou, precursor to Wuyue Ma Yin at Tanzhou, precursor to Chu Wang Shenzhi at Fuzhou, precursor to Min Liu Yin at Guangzhou, precursor to Southern Han Wang Jian at Chengdu, precursor to Former Shu During the Tang Dynasty, the warlord Zhu Wen held the most power in northern China. Although he was a member of Huang Chao's rebel army, he took on a crucial role in suppressing the Huang Chao Rebellion.
For this function, he was awarded the Xuanwu Jiedushi title. Within a few years, he had consolidated his power by destroying neighbours and forcing the move of the imperial capital to Luoyang, within his region of influence. In 904, he made his 13-year-old son a subordinate ruler. Three years he induced the boy emperor to abdicate in his favour, he proclaimed himself emperor, thus beginning the Later Liang. During the final years of the Tang Dynasty, rival warlords declared independence in the provinces they governed—not all of which recognized the emperor's authority. Li Cunxu and Liu Shouguang fiercely fought, he defeated Liu Shouguang in 915, declared himself emperor in 923. Thus began the Shatuo Later Tang — the first in a long line of conquest dynasties. After reuniting much of northern China, in 925 Cunxu conquered the Former Shu, a regime, set up in Sichuan; the Later Tang had a few years of relative calm, followed by unrest. In 934, Sichuan again asserted independence. In 936, Shi Jingtang, a Shatuo jiedushi from Taiyuan, was aided by the ethnic-Khitan Liao dynasty in a rebellion against the Later Tang.
In return for their aid, Shi Jingtang promised annual tribute and the Sixteen Prefectures to the Khitans. The rebellion succeeded. Not long after the founding of the Later Jin, the Khitans came to regard the emperor as a proxy ruler for China proper. In 943, the Khitans declared war and within three years seized the capital, marking the end of Later Jin, but while they had conquered vast regions of China, the Khitans were unable or unwilling to control those regions and retreated from them early in the next year. To fill the power vacuum, the jiedushi Liu Zhiyuan entered the imperial capital in 947 and proclaimed the advent of the Later Han, establishing a third successive Shatuo reign; this was the shortest of the five dynasties. Following a coup in 951, General Guo Wei, a Han Chinese, was enthroned, thus beginning the Later Zhou. However, Liu Chong, a member of the Later Han imperial family, established a rival Northern Han regime in Taiyuan and requested Khitan aid to defeat the Later Zhou.
After the death of Guo Wei in 951, his adopted son Chai Rong succeeded the throne and began a policy of expansion and reunification. In 954, his army defeated combined Khitan and Northern Han forces, ending their ambition of toppling the Later Zhou. Between 956 and 958, forces of Later Zhou conquered much of Southern Tang, the most powerful regime in southern China, which ceded all the territory north of the Yangtze in defeat. In 959, Chai Rong attacked the Liao in an attempt to recover territories ceded during the Later Jin. After many victories, he succumbed to illness. In 960, the general Zhao Kuangyin staged a coup and took the throne for himself, founding the Northern Song Dynasty; this is the official end of Ten Kingdoms period. During the next two decades, Zhao Kuangyin and his successor Zhao Kuan
Liu Sheng, Prince of Zhongshan
Liu Sheng, posthumously known as King/Prince Jing of Zhongshan, was a king/prince of the Western Han empire of Chinese history. His father was Emperor Jing, he was the elder brother of Emperor Wu of Han, his mausoleum is one of the most important archaeological sites pertaining to the Western Han imperial family, whose contents include the jade burial suits which encased him and his wife, Dou Wan. Liu Sheng was born to Emperor Jing of Han and Consort Jia, who had another son, Liu Pengzu the Prince of Zhao, he was given the fief of Zhongshan by his father in 154 BC, therefore reigned in the period right after the Rebellion of the Seven States, when the political atmosphere was one of suspicion regarding the feudal states. Given this atmosphere Liu Sheng was one of the more successful feudal rulers. In the third year of the reign of Emperor Wu, his younger brother, Liu Sheng and several other princes were invited to Chang'an to feast. Impressed by this petition the Emperor explicitly ordered that the unfair scrutiny of the princes should stop, Liu Sheng became one of the most renowned of the feudal rulers of his time.
He was known to indulge in alcohol and women, is reputed to have had some 120 sons. Father Emperor Jing of Han Mother Consort Jia Wives: Dou Wan Major Concubines:? Children Liu Chang, Prince Ai of Zhongshan Liu Zhen, Ting Marquis of Zhuolu Descendant Liu Bei Shu Han family trees
Chinese jade refers to the jade mined or carved in China from the Neolithic onward. It is the primary hardstone of Chinese sculpture. Although deep and bright green jadeite is better known in Europe, for most of China's history, jade has come in a variety of colors and white "mutton-fat" nephrite was the most praised and prized. Native sources in Henan and along the Yangtze were exploited since prehistoric times and have been exhausted. Jade was prized for its hardness, musical qualities, beauty. In particular, its subtle, translucent colors and protective qualities caused it to become associated with Chinese conceptions of the soul and immortality. With gold, it was considered to be a symbol of heaven; the most prominent early use was the crafting of the Six Ritual Jades, found since the 3rd-millennium BC Liangzhu culture: the bi, the cong, the huang, the hu, the gui, the zhang. Since the meanings of these shapes were not mentioned prior to the eastern Zhou dynasty, by the time of the composition of the Rites of Zhou, they were thought to represent the sky, the earth, the four directions.
By the Han dynasty, the royal family and prominent lords were buried ensheathed in jade burial suits sewn in gold thread, on the idea that it would preserve the body and the souls attached to it. Jade was thought to combat fatigue in the living; the Han greatly improved prior artistic treatment of jade. These uses gave way after the Three Kingdoms period to Buddhist practices and new developments in Taoism such as alchemy. Nonetheless, jade remained part of an important artistic medium. Although its use never became widespread in Japan, jade became important to the art of Korea and Southeast Asia; the Chinese word yù 玉 "jade. Yù has referred to many rocks and minerals that carve and polish well jadeite and agalmatolite, as well as bowenite and other varieties of serpentine. Jadeite is now known as yìngyù 硬玉 and nephrite correspondingly as ruǎnyù 軟玉; the polysemous term yù is used in various Chinese chengyu "set phrases, such as pāozhuānyǐnyù 抛砖引玉 "offer banal/humble remarks to spark abler talk by others.
The Chinese character 玉 for yu "jade" dates back to circa 11th century BCE oracle bone script from the late Shang dynasty, when it depicted pieces of jade hanging on a string. Chinese characters most combine a radical, such as the "jade radical" 玉 or 王, that suggests meaning and a phonetic that hints at pronunciation; the "jade radical" occurs in characters for names of gemstones, for words denoting "preciousness". Jade has been used in all periods of Chinese history and accords with the style of decorative art characteristic of each period, its deep significance in Chinese culture has deemed it worthy of being symbolic of ancient Chinese ethics and ideologies and representative of the progression of Chinese culture. Thus, the earliest jades, of the Neolithic Period, are unornamented ritual and impractical versions of the tools and weapons that were in ordinary use much larger than normal examples; these are presumed to have been symbols of political power or religious authority. There have been three main Neolithic jadeworking centers.
The first known center is known as the Liangzhu culture. This centre took place in the Lake Tai District; the jades of this period were small items of personal adornment, such as small discs strung onto necklaces. The jade was polished on its surface and perforated. Ritual jades and personal ornamental jade of different shapes began to show up during this time period; this religious nature of jade is evaluated as connections between spirituality and the Neolithic societal structure that jade was produced in. The second centre is known as Longshan culture and arose in 2500 BC; the centre was situated in China's east coast. The jade objects found in these centres were ritualistic implements, such as axes and chisels. There is a suggestion of curvilinear anthropomorphic images. A distinctive carving technique was used to create the fine raised relief of the anthropomorphic images; the third known centre is known as the Hongshan culture. The centre was situated in along the modern northeastern border of China.
The objects of this centre were pendants and large C-shaped ornaments. Realistic figures of fish, turtles and owl-like birds with spread wings were typical carvings of the Hongshan culture. During Neolithic times, the key known sources of nephrite jade in China for utilitarian and ceremonial jade items were the now depleted deposits in the Ningshao area in the Yangtze River Delta and in an area of the Liaoning province in Inner Mongolia. Archeological finds have unearthed jade objects in this province in the shapes of dragons and clay-molded human figurines, therefore symbolizing the existence of a developed social group along the Liao River and inner-Mongolia; as early as 6000 BC, Dushan jade has been mined. In the Yin Ruins
Liu Bei, courtesy name Xuande, was a warlord in the late Eastern Han dynasty who founded the state of Shu Han in the Three Kingdoms period and became its first ruler. Despite early failings compared to his rivals and lacking both the material resources and social status they commanded, he gathered support among disheartened Han loyalists who opposed Cao Cao, the warlord who controlled the Han central government and the figurehead Emperor Xian, led a popular movement to restore the Han dynasty through this support. Liu Bei overcame his many defeats to carve out his own realm, which at its peak spanned present-day Sichuan, Guizhou and parts of Hubei and Gansu. Culturally, due to the popularity of the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Liu Bei is known as an ideal benevolent, humane ruler who cared for his people and selected good advisers for his government, his fictional counterpart in the novel was a salutary example of a ruler who adhered to the Confucian set of moral values, such as loyalty and compassion.
Liu Bei, like many Han rulers, was influenced by Laozi. He was a brilliant leader whose skill was a remarkable demonstration of a Legalist. Liu Bei's somewhat Confucian tendencies were dramatized compared to his rival states' founders, Cao Pi and Sun Quan, who both ruled as pure Legalists, his political philosophy can best be described by the Chinese idiom "Confucian in appearance but Legalist in substance", a style of governing which had become the norm after the founding of the Han dynasty. The historical text Records of the Three Kingdoms described Liu Bei as a man seven chi and five cun tall, with long arms that extended beyond his knees, ears so large that he could see them; the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms gives a similar description about Liu Bei's physical appearance, but with additional features. It mentions that Liu Bei is seven chi and five cun tall, with ears so large that they touch his shoulders and that he can see them, long arms that extend beyond his knees, a fair and handsome face, lips so red that it seems as though he is wearing lipstick.
According to the 3rd-century historical text Records of the Three Kingdoms, Liu Bei was born in Zhuo County, Zhuo Commandery, in present-day Zhuozhou, Hebei. He was a son of Liu Sheng and a grandson of Emperor Jing. However, Pei Songzhi's 5th-century commentary, based on the Dianlue, said that Liu Bei was a descendant of the Marquis of Linyi; as the title "Marquis of Linyi" was held by Liu Fu and by Liu Fu's son Liu Taotu, who were descendants of Emperor Jing, it was possible that Liu Bei descended from this line rather than Liu Zhen's line. Liu Bei's grandfather Liu Xiong and father Liu Hong both served as clerks in the local commandery office. Liu Bei grew up in a poor family. To support themselves, Liu Bei and his mother sold straw-woven mats. So, Liu Bei was full of ambition from childhood: he once said to his peers, while under a tree that resembled the imperial chariot, that he desired to become an emperor. In 175, his mother sent him to study with a distinguished man from Zhuo Commandery.
One of his fellow-students was Gongsun Zan, whom Liu Bei admired and treated as an elder brother, another was his kinsman Liu Deran. The adolescent Liu Bei was said to be unenthusiastic in studying and displayed interest in hunting and dressing. Concise in speech, calm in demeanour, kind to his friends, Liu Bei was well liked by his contemporaries. In 184, at the outbreak of the Yellow Turban Rebellion, Liu Bei became much more politically aware and called for the assembly of a militia to help government forces suppress the rebellion. Liu Bei received financial contributions from two wealthy horse merchants, Zhang Shiping and Su Shuang, rallied a group of loyal followers, including Guan Yu, Zhang Fei and Jian Yong. Liu Bei led his militia to join the local government forces led by Colonel Zou Jing and participated in battles against the rebels. In recognition of his contributions, the Han central government appointed Liu Bei as the Prefect of Anxi County, one of the counties in Zhongshan Commandery.
The Han central government decreed that any official who had gained the post as a reward for military contributions was to be dismissed and Liu Bei resigned the post after attacking the inspector who had attempted to formally dismiss him. He travelled south with his followers to join another militia in fighting the Yellow Turbans remnants in Xu Province; as a reward for his contributions, the Han central government appointed him as the Prefect and Commandant of Gaotang County. Liu Bei never participated in the Campaign against Dong Zhuo, although he is said to have raised troops for the purpose. Instead, he opted to move north to join the warlord Gongsun Zan. In 191, they scored a major victory against another warlord Yuan Shao in their struggle for control of Ji Province and Qing Province. Gongsun Zan nominated Liu Bei to be the Chancellor of Pingyuan State and sent him to join his subordinate Tian Kai in fighting Yuan Shao's eldest son Yuan Tan in Qing Province. In 194, Yuan Shao's al
Qin Shi Huang
Qin Shi Huang was the founder of the Qin dynasty and was the first emperor of a unified China. He was born a prince of the state of Qin, he became Zheng, the King of Qin when he was thirteen China's first emperor when he was 38 after the Qin had conquered all of the other Warring States and unified all of China in 221 BC. Rather than maintain the title of "king" borne by the previous Shang and Zhou rulers, he ruled as the First Emperor of the Qin dynasty from 220 to 210 BC, his self-invented title "emperor", as indicated by his use of the word "First", would continue to be borne by Chinese rulers for the next two millennia. During his reign, his generals expanded the size of the Chinese state: campaigns south of Chu permanently added the Yue lands of Hunan and Guangdong to the Chinese cultural orbit. Qin Shi Huang worked with his minister Li Si to enact major economic and political reforms aimed at the standardization of the diverse practices of the earlier Chinese states, he is traditionally said to have banned and burned many books and executed scholars, though a closer examination renders the account doubtful.
His public works projects included the unification of diverse state walls into a single Great Wall of China and a massive new national road system, as well as the city-sized mausoleum guarded by the life-sized Terracotta Army. He ruled until his death in 210 BC during his fourth tour of Eastern China, his achievements made him one of the most respected and influential individuals in world history, a legacy among the Chinese. Modern Chinese sources give the personal name of Qin Shi Huang as Ying Zheng, with Ying taken as the surname and Zheng the given name. In ancient China however the naming convention differed, Zhao may be used as the surname. Unlike modern Chinese names, the nobles of ancient China had two distinct surnames: the ancestral name comprised a larger group descended from a prominent ancestor said to have lived during the time of the Three Sovereigns and Five Emperors of Chinese legend, the clan name comprised a smaller group that showed a branch's current fief or recent title.
The ancient practice was to list men's names separately—Sima Qian's "Basic Annals of the First Emperor of Qin" introduces him as "given the name Zheng and the surname Zhao"—or to combine the clan surname with the personal name: Sima's account of Chu describes the sixteenth year of the reign of King Kaolie as "the time when Zhao Zheng was enthroned as King of Qin". However, since modern Chinese surnames use the same character as the old ancestral names, it is much more common in modern Chinese sources to see the emperor's personal name written as Ying Zheng, using the ancestral name of the Ying family; the rulers of Qin had styled themselves kings from the time of King Huiwen in 325 BC. Upon his ascension, Zheng became known as King Zheng of Qin; this title made him the nominal equal of the rulers of Shang and of Zhou, the last of whose kings had been deposed by King Zhaoxiang of Qin in 256 BC. Following the surrender of Qi in 221 BC, King Zheng had reunited all of the lands of the former Kingdom of Zhou.
Rather than maintain his rank as king, however, he created a new title of huángdì for himself. This new title combined two titles—huáng of the mythical Three Sovereigns and the dì of the legendary Five Emperors of Chinese prehistory; the title was intended to appropriate some of the prestige of the Yellow Emperor, whose cult was popular in the Warring States period and, considered to be a founder of the Chinese people. King Zheng chose the new regnal name of First Emperor on the understanding that his successors would be successively titled the "Second Emperor", "Third Emperor", so on through the generations; the new title carried religious overtones. For that reason, Sinologists—starting with Peter Boodberg or Edward Schafer—sometimes translate it as "thearch" and the First Emperor as the First Thearch; the First Emperor intended that his realm would remain intact through the ages but, following its overthrow and replacement by Han after his death, it became customary to prefix his title with Qin.
Thus: 秦, Qín or Ch‘in, "of Qin" 始, Shǐ or Shih, "first" 皇帝, Huángdì or Huang-ti, "emperor", a new term coined from 皇, Huáng or Huang "shining" or "splendid" and most applied "as an epithet of Heaven", the high god of the Zhou 帝, Dì or Ti, the high god of the Shang composed of their divine ancestors, used by the Zhou as a title of the legendary Five Emperors the Yellow EmperorAs early as Sima Qian, it was common to shorten the resulting four-character Qin Shi Huangdi to 秦始皇, variously transcribed as Qin Shihuang or Qin Shi Huang. Following his elevation as emperor, both Zheng's personal name 政 and its homophone 正 became taboo; the First Emperor arrogated the first-person Chinese pronoun 朕 for his exclusive use and in 212 BC began calling himself The Immortal. Others were to address him as "Your Majesty" in person and "Your Highness"
Zhao was one of the seven major states during the Warring States period of ancient China. It was created from the three-way Partition of Jin, together with Han and Wei, in the 5th century BC. Zhao gained significant strength from the military reforms initiated during King Wuling's reign, but suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of Qin at the Battle of Changping, its territory included areas now in modern Inner Mongolia, Hebei and Shaanxi provinces. It bordered the Xiongnu, the states of Qin and Yan, its capital was Handan, in modern Hebei Province. Zhao was home to administrative philosopher Shen Dao, sophist Gongsun Long and the Confucian Xun Kuang; the Zhao clan within Jin had accumulated power for centuries, including annexing the Baidi state of Dai for themselves during the mid-5th century BC. At the end of the Spring and Autumn Period, Jin was divided up between three powerful ministers. In 403 BC, the king of Zhou formally recognized the existence of the State of Zhao along with two other States and Wei, marking the start of the Warring States Period.
At the onset of the Warring States period, Zhao was one of the weaker states. Despite its extensive territory, its northern border was subject to harassment by the Xiongnu and by other northern nomadic peoples. At the same time, Zhao was surrounded by strong states and lacked the military strength of Wei or the prosperity of Qi. Zhao became a pawn in the struggle between the states of Wei and Qi, this struggle came to a climax in 354 BC when Wei invaded Zhao, Zhao had to seek aid from Qi; the resulting Battle of Guiling was a major victory for Qi, it lessened the threat to Zhao's southern border. Zhao remained weak until the military reforms of King Wuling of Zhao; the soldiers of Zhao were ordered to dress like their Xiongnu neighbours and to replace war chariots with cavalry archers. This reform proved to be a brilliant strategy. With the advanced technology of the Chinese states and nomadic tactics, the cavalry of Zhao became a powerful force; the result was that the newly strengthened Zhao was evenly matched against its greatest enemy, the state of Qi.
Zhao demonstrated its enhanced military prowess by conquering the State of Zhongshan in 295 BC after a prolonged war, annexing territory from its neighbouring states of Wei and Qin. During this time, the cavalry of Zhao occasionally intruded into the state of Qi in campaigns against the state of Chu. Several brilliant military commanders of the period appeared concurrently, including Lian Po, Zhao She and Li Mu. Lian Po proved instrumental in defending Zhao against the Qin. Zhao She was most active in the east. Li Mu defended Zhao from the Xiongnu and from Qin. By the end of the Warring States Period, Zhao was the only state strong enough to oppose the powerful Qin state. An alliance with Wei against Qin commenced in 287 BC but ended in defeat at Huayang in 273 BC; the struggle culminated in the bloodiest battle of the whole period, the Battle of Changping in 260 BC. The troops of Zhao were defeated by Qin. Although the forces of Wei and Chu saved Handan from a follow-up siege by the victorious Qin, Zhao would never recover from the enormous loss of men in the battle.
In 229 BC, invasions led by the Qin general Wang Jian were opposed by Li Mu and his subordinate officer Sima Shang until 228 BC. Li Mu was one of the best generals of the Warring States era, although he was unable to defeat Wang Jian, Wang Jian was unable to make headway either; the invasion developed into a stalemate. Realizing that he had to get rid of Li Mu to conquer Zhao, the emperor of Qin, Qin Shihuang, attempted to sow discord among the Zhao leadership. Zhao King Youmiu fell for the scheme: acting on faulty advice from disloyal court officials and Qin infiltrators, he ordered the execution of Li Mu and relieved Sima Shang from his duties. Li Mu's replacement, Zhao Cong, was promptly defeated by Wang Jian. Qin captured King Youmiu and conquered Zhao in 228 BC. Prince Jia, the stepbrother of King Qian, was proclaimed King Jia at Dai and led the last Zhao forces against the Qin; the regime lasted until 222 BC, when the Qin army defeated his forces at Dai. In 154 BC, an unrelated Zhao, headed by Liu Sui, the Prince of Zhao kingdom, participated in the unsuccessful Rebellion of the Seven States against the newly installed second emperor of the Han dynasty.
Before the state of Qin unified China in 221 BC, each region had their own unique customs and culture, although they were all dominated by an upper class that shared a common culture. In the Yu Gong, a section of the Book of Documents, most composed in the 4th century BC, the author describes a China, divided into nine regions, each with its own distinctive peoples and products; the core theme of this section is that these nine regions are unified into one state by the travels of the eponymous sage, Yu the Great and by sending each region's unique goods to the capital as tribute. Other texts discussed these regional variations in culture and physical environments. One of these texts was Wuzi, a Warring States military treatise written in response to a query by Marquis Wu of Wei on how to cope with the other states. Wu Qi, the author of the work, declared that the government and nature of the people were linked to the physical environment and territory they live in. Of Zhao, he said: The two states of Han and Zhao train their troops rigorously but have difficulty in applying their skills to the battlefield.
Han and Zhao are states of the Central Plain. Theirs are a gentle p
Campaign against Dong Zhuo
The Campaign against Dong Zhuo was a punitive expedition initiated by a coalition of regional officials and warlords against the warlord Dong Zhuo in 190 in the late Eastern Han dynasty. The members of the coalition claimed that Dong had the intention of usurping the throne by holding Emperor Xian hostage and by establishing a strong influence in the imperial court, they justified their campaign. The campaign led to the evacuation of the capital Luoyang and the shifting of the imperial court to Chang'an, it was a prelude to the end of the Han dynasty and, the Three Kingdoms period. In the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, the campaign is memorable for at least two famous incidents: one is Guan Yu's slaying of Hua Xiong; the two scenes are reenacted in Chinese opera along with other famous scenes from the novel. Both incidents however, are fictional. Liu and Zhang were not active in the campaign. Instead, they were fighting remnants of the Yellow Turban rebels in the north and thus did not duel with Lü Bu, defeated by Sun Jian in battle.
Following the death of Emperor Ling in 189, General-in-Chief He Jin summoned the frontier general Dong Zhuo from the northwest into the capital city of Luoyang. Dong was ordered to lead his troops into the capital city to aid He in eliminating the eunuch faction, the Ten Attendants, from the imperial court. However, before Dong Zhuo's arrival, He Jin's plan was revealed and he was assassinated by the eunuchs on 22 September 189, he Jin's associates led by Yuan Shao stormed the palace after the assassination and started massacring eunuchs. The young Emperor Shao and his younger brother, the Prince of Chenliu, were brought out of the palace by the surviving eunuchs during the chaos; the emperor lost the Imperial Seal during his escape. They were discovered by a search party and escorted back to the palace safely by Dong Zhuo and his men. Subsequently, the warlord Ding Yuan was killed by his subordinate Lü Bu for opposing Dong Zhuo's decision to depose Emperor Shao. Lü defected to Dong's side. In 190, Dong Zhuo installed the Prince of Chenliu on the throne.
The prince became known as Emperor Xian. Dong appointed himself as Chancellor of State, an official post abolished 200 years ago. On March 26 in the same year, Dong had Liu Empress Dowager He killed. Since Dong Zhuo had established a strong influence in the imperial court, he was authoritarian and showed no regard for the absolute monarchy as he made the final decisions on policies without consulting or seeking approval from the emperor. He eliminated several of his opponents in the imperial court to further strengthen his grip over the apparatus of state. Yuan Shao fled from Luoyang after disagreeing with Dong Zhuo's decision to depose Emperor Shao. Dong Zhuo feared that Yuan Shao might rise in revolt against him as Yuan was an influential figure in politics as well. Dong heeded his advisor's suggestions and proposed to the emperor to appoint Yuan as Grand Administrator of Bohai as an act of appeasement. While in Bohai, Yuan Shao was not appeased by Dong Zhuo's proposal to appoint him as Grand Administrator.
He planned to start a coup d'etat to remove Dong from power by rising in revolt but he was kept in check by Han Fu, the Governor of Ji Province. At the same time, the Grand Administrator of Dong Commandery, Qiao Mao, forged letters of accusation against Dong Zhuo, denouncing him as a traitor with the intention of usurping the throne, calling for a punitive expedition against Dong; these letters were distributed all around the nation in the name of officials from the capital. Regional officials and warlords all around China received the letters and responded to the call to remove Dong Zhuo from power. In February 190, the Guandong Coalition was formed after several regional officials and warlords gathered east of Hangu Pass with their armies in response to the call for a punitive war against Dong Zhuo. Yuan Shao was elected to be the leader of the coalition; the forces of Sun Jian and Cao Cao participated in the campaign under the banners of Yuan Shu and Zhang Miao respectively. The participants of the campaign included: The coalition forces encamped in several locations east of the capital city of Luoyang surrounding it.
The locations of the coalition members in relation to Luoyang are as follows: To the north, in Henei: Yuan Shao, Wang Kuang, Zhang Yang, Yufuluo To the east, in Suanzao: Zhang Miao, Liu Dai, Qiao Mao, Yuan Yi To the south, in Luyang: Yuan Shu To the southeast, in Yingchuan: Kong Zhou To the northeast, in Ye: Han FuThe blockade had the effect of cutting supplies from the eastern part of the Han empire from the capital, which drastically reduced the government's tax revenue. In response, Dong Zhuo melted nine of the Twelve Metal Colossi and other treasures to gather bronze that he could use to mint more coinage; these new coins caused rampant inflation throughout the empire. Despite the impressive showing of force, most of the coalition's armies were hurriedly rallied family retainers and opportunists for loot with little battle experience; the leader of the coalition Yuan Shao himself had not seen action in much of the 180s since he had been in six years mourning for first his mother and his adoptive father, during which he could not participate in military matters.
This is contrasted with Dong Zhuo's battle-hardened frontiersmen, who had fought in the Liang Province Rebellion. Dong Zhuo w