|Minister of the Guards (衛尉)|
234 – c. 235
227 – 234
|Military Adviser to the General-in-Chief|
234 – 234
? – ?
|Palace Attendant (侍中)|
220 – ?
|Chief Clerk to the Imperial Chancellor|
c. 219 – 220
|Monarch||Emperor Xian of Han|
c. 204 – c. 219
|Monarch||Emperor Xian of Han|
|Chancellor||Cao Cao (after 208)|
|Relations||Xin Ping (brother)|
|Courtesy name||Zuozhi (佐治)|
|Posthumous name||Marquis Su (肅侯)|
|Peerage||Marquis of Ying District|
Xin Pi (died c. 235),[a] courtesy name Zuozhi, was an official of the state of Cao Wei during the Three Kingdoms period of China. Along with his elder brother Xin Ping, he started his career in the late Eastern Han dynasty as an adviser to the warlord Yuan Shao. Following Yuan Shao's death and a power struggle between Yuan Shao's sons Yuan Tan and Yuan Shang, Xin Pi initially sided with Yuan Tan but later defected to Yuan Shao's rival Cao Cao, while seeking Cao Cao's aid on Yuan Tan's behalf in the fight against Yuan Shang. As a result, his family members were executed by Shen Pei, a Yuan Shang loyalist who blamed Xin Pi for the downfall of the Yuan family. After avenging his family, Xin Pi served as an official under Cao Cao, who controlled the Han central government and the figurehead Emperor Xian. After the Cao Wei state replaced the Eastern Han dynasty, Xin Pi continued serving under Cao Cao's successor Cao Pi, the first Wei emperor, and later under Cao Rui, Cao Pi's son. Throughout his service in Wei, he was known for being outspoken and critical whenever he disagreed with the emperors and his colleagues. His highest appointment in the Wei government was the Minister of the Guards (衞尉). He died around 235 and was survived by his son Xin Chang and daughter Xin Xianying.
- 1 Family background
- 2 Service under Yuan Shao and Yuan Tan
- 3 Service under Cao Cao
- 4 Service under Cao Pi
- 5 Service under Cao Rui
- 6 Death
- 7 Descendants
- 8 See also
- 9 Notes
- 10 References
Xin Pi was from Yangzhai County (陽翟縣), Yingchuan Commandery (潁川郡), which is around present-day Yuzhou, Henan. His ancestors were actually from Longxi Commandery (隴西郡; around present-day Dingxi, Gansu), but they migrated to Yingchuan Commandery during the Jianwu era (25–56 CE) of the reign of Emperor Guangwu in the early Eastern Han dynasty.
Service under Yuan Shao and Yuan Tan
Xin Pi and his elder brother Xin Ping served as advisers to the warlord Yuan Shao, who controlled much of northern China from 191 to 202. When the warlord Cao Cao, who was also Yuan Shao's rival, held the position of Minister of Works (司空) in the Han central government between 196 and 208, he invited Xin Pi to serve in his administration but Xin Pi refused.
Following Yuan Shao's death in 202, internal conflict broke out between his sons Yuan Shang and Yuan Tan over the succession to their father's place. Yuan Shao's followers also split into two camps – one supporting Yuan Shang and the other backing Yuan Tan. In 203, when Yuan Shang attacked Yuan Tan at Pingyuan County, Guo Tu advised Yuan Tan to make peace with Cao Cao and ally with Cao Cao to counter Yuan Shang. After Yuan Tan reluctantly agreed, Guo Tu nominated Xin Pi to serve as Yuan Tan's representative to meet Cao Cao.
Persuading Cao Cao to ally with Yuan Tan against Yuan Shang
Around the time, Cao Cao was planning for an invasion of Jing Province (covering present-day Hubei and Hunan) and had stationed his troops at Xiping County (西平縣; southeast of present-day Wuyang County, Henan). When Xin Pi met Cao Cao, he conveyed Yuan Tan's message and sought Cao Cao's support in dealing with Yuan Shang. Although Cao Cao was initially pleased to hear that Yuan Tan wanted to ally with him against Yuan Shang, a few days later he changed his mind and wanted to attack Jing Province first. He also hoped that in doing so, the Yuan brothers would continue to fight each other.
Some days later, when Xin Pi attended a feast hosted by Cao Cao, he noticed that Cao Cao had changed his mind after observing his facial expressions, so he spoke to Cao Cao's adviser Guo Jia. After Guo Jia told him, Cao Cao asked Xin Pi: "Can Yuan Tan be trusted? Can Yuan Shang be defeated?" Xin Pi replied:
"Wise Lord, you shouldn't be asking about trust and deceit; you should be talking about the current situation as it is. When the Yuan brothers fight each other, the more important question is not whether you can take advantage of the situation to drive a deeper wedge between them, but rather you should be talking about seizing the opportunity to unify and pacify northern China. Since Yuan Tan is seeking your help, it is obvious that he is in deep trouble now. Although Yuan Shang knows that Yuan Tan is weak, he hasn't pressed on his attack. This shows that Yuan Shang isn't powerful enough to completely destroy Yuan Tan. The Yuan regime is divided into two. Externally, they lose battles against their enemies; internally, they purge political opponents. The Yuan brothers wage war against each other. After years of war, their soldiers' armour have become rusty. Droughts and locust swarms have destroyed their crops and caused a famine. Their treasury is empty. Their troops have no food supplies. It is indeed both a natural and man-made disaster for them. Any person, be he wise or foolish, will know that the Yuan regime will collapse soon just from simply observing their current situation. It is a sign from Heaven that Yuan Shang will meet his doom. According to the military classics, one can't defend a base without adequate food supplies even if the base is well-fortified and its defenders are well-trained and well-equipped. If you attack Ye, Yuan Shang will have to turn back to save the city or else he will lose his base. If he turns back to save Ye, Yuan Tan will make aggressive advances behind him. Given your might, it will be very easy for you to defeat an exhausted enemy, just as a gust of autumn wind can easily scatter leaves to the ground. Heaven has granted you, Wise Lord, an opportunity to eliminate Yuan Shang, yet you choose to attack Jing Province instead. Jing Province is prosperous and peaceful; it isn't experiencing any form of internal conflict. Zhonghui (仲虺) once said: 'Attack an enemy who is experiencing internal chaos or on the verge of collapse.' As of now, the Yuan brothers couldn't care less about the future when they fight each other. This is an instance of "internal chaos". His followers, be they behind city walls or out on the battlefield, are having a shortage of food supplies. This is an instance of "on the verge of collapse". The Yuan brothers' doom is near; their people are in a state of panic and fear. Shouldn't you pacify their people now instead of waiting to do so in the future? If they have a good harvest next year, recognise the peril they are in, and take appropriate actions to correct their mistakes and cover their weaknesses, then you would have lost an opportunity to subdue them by military force. As of now, you stand to gain the greatest benefit if you agree to help Yuan Tan and pacify them. Besides, there are no greater opposing forces to you than those from Hebei. Once you pacify Hebei, your armies will become so powerful that the Empire will tremble at your might."
Service under Cao Cao
Battle of Ye
In 204, Xin Pi accompanied Cao Cao on a campaign against Yuan Shang. Earlier on, when conflict first broke out between Yuan Shang and Yuan Tan, Xin Pi decided to side with Yuan Tan and follow him to Pingyuan County but he left his family members behind in Ye (in present-day Handan, Hebei). Yuan Shang later had Xin Pi's family members arrested and imprisoned. During the Battle of Ye, when Yuan Shang's adviser Shen Pei saw that Cao Cao's forces had broken through Ye's defences, he blamed Xin Pi for the downfall of the Yuan family so he ordered his men to execute Xin Pi's family members. After Ye fell to Cao Cao's forces, Xin Pi rushed to the prison to free his family but it was too late as all of them were already dead.
After the battle, Xin Pi found Shen Pei, who was being escorted as a captive to be brought before Cao Cao. He started hitting Shen Pei on the head with his horse whip while scolding him: "Slave, today you shall meet your doom!" Shen Pei looked at Xin Pi and replied: "You dog! It is because of you that Cao Cao conquered Ji Province. I can't wait to kill you, but too bad it turns out that today I am at your mercy." After Cao Cao met Shen Pei, he considered releasing Shen Pei but Xin Pi started crying and insisting that he wanted Shen Pei dead as justice for his family, so Cao Cao had no choice but to order Shen Pei's execution.
After the Battle of Ye, Cao Cao recommended the Han central government to appoint Xin Pi as a Consultant (議郎).
In 217, when Cao Cao ordered his general Cao Hong to lead troops to attack Liu Bei's forces at Xiabian County (下辨縣; northwest of present-day Cheng County, Gansu), he also appointed Xin Pi and Cao Xiu to serve as Cao Hong's deputies. Cao Cao also issued a memo to them as follows: "In the past, when Emperor Gaozu indulged in luxury and women, Zhang Liang and Chen Ping were there to point out his mistakes. Today, Zuozhi and Wenlie will ensure that (Cao Hong) will not be careless."
Service under Cao Pi
After Cao Cao died in early 220, his son Cao Pi usurped the throne from Emperor Xian later that year, ended the Eastern Han dynasty, and established the Cao Wei state with himself as the new emperor. After Cao Pi took the throne, he appointed Xin Pi as a Palace Attendant (侍中) and awarded him the peerage of a Secondary Marquis (關內侯).
Advising Cao Pi against changing the starting date of the calendar year
At the time, there was a discussion in Cao Pi's imperial court on the issue of whether to change the starting date of the calendar year. Xin Pi argued that it was unnecessary to do so since there was a peaceful transition from the Eastern Han dynasty to the Cao Wei state, just like how Yu succeeded Shun in ancient times. He pointed out that the ruling dynasty only changed the starting date when it replaced its predecessor through violence, such as the Shang dynasty replacing the Xia dynasty and the Zhou dynasty replacing the Shang dynasty in turn. He also quoted sayings from Confucius and the Zuo zhuan which mentioned that the starting date of the calendar year set in the Xia dynasty was the most legitimate one, and therefore it would be best for the Cao Wei state to follow it. Cao Pi heeded Xin Pi's suggestion.
Advising Cao Pi against relocating residents from Hebei to Henan
On one occasion, Cao Pi considered relocating 100,000 households from Ji Province (present-day Hebei) to the lands south of the Yellow River in present-day Henan. At the time, the people were suffering from famine as locust swarms had destroyed their crops. Although his officials strongly objected to the relocation, Cao Pi was bent on proceeding with his plan.
When Xin Pi and other officials requested an audience with him, Cao Pi knew that they were going to dissuade him from relocating the households, so he put on a stern face when he met them. While the others became afraid upon seeing the emperor's facial expression and did not dare to speak up, Xin Pi asked: "How did Your Majesty come up with the idea of relocating those households?" Cao Pi asked him in return: "Do you think it is inappropriate?" Xin Pi replied: "Indeed. I do believe it is inappropriate." Cao Pi then said: "I am not going to discuss it with you."
Xin Pi said: "Your Majesty doesn't think I am incapable. That is why you appoint me as a close aide and adviser. Why then wouldn't you discuss it with me? I am not speaking up because it is a private matter to me, but because it is an issue of concern to the state. Why do you need to get angry at me?"
When Cao Pi ignored him and walked back to his personal chambers, Xin Pi followed him and held on to his sleeve. Cao Pi became so annoyed that he forcefully pulled Xin Pi's hand off his sleeve and retreated into his chambers. When he came out later after a long time, he asked Xin Pi: "Zuozhi, what made you so impatient just now?" Xin Pi replied: "If Your Majesty relocates those households, you will lose the people's hearts. Besides, they are already suffering from famine." Cao Pi eventually did relocate those households but only 50,000 instead of 100,000.
Speaking up against Cao Pi's hunting of pheasants
On another occasion, when Xin Pi accompanied Cao Pi on a pheasant hunting trip, the emperor remarked: "What a joy it is to hunt pheasants!" Xin Pi responded: "Your Majesty may see it as a joy, but your subjects see it as a pain." Cao Pi became unhappy and hardly went out hunting again from then on.
Advising Cao Pi against attacking Eastern Wu
In 223, during the Battle of Jiangling between Wei and its rival state Eastern Wu, Xin Pi served as a military adviser to the Wei general Cao Zhen. After he returned from the battle, Cao Pi elevated him from the status of a secondary marquis to a village marquis under the title "Marquis of Guangping Village" (廣平亭侯).
When Cao Pi later planned to launch a large-scale invasion of Wu, Xin Pi attempted to dissuade him by saying:
"It is difficult to rule over the people of Wu and Chu. They will submit to us if we manage to win them through virtue; if we fail morally, they will turn against us. This is not a new phenomenon. Since ancient times, the people of Wu and Chu have been regarded as a threat. As long as Your Majesty rules the Empire, how can those who oppose you last long? In the past, although Zhao Tuo became king of the Nanyue kingdom and Gongsun Shu declared himself the Son of Heaven, their regimes did not last long. They either surrendered or were destroyed. Why? They lacked virtue. That was why they won't be safe and stable for long. If one is virtuous, he will gain acceptance and recognition. As of now, the Empire has just stabilised and the lands are barren and the population is small. Under normal circumstances, if a state is to go to war, its government will have to plan way ahead in advance. Even when such plans have been made, before going to war, the state should also be on the lookout for gaps and flaws in its plans. Since we have yet to make even the most basic preparations, I don't think we are capable of securing victory. The Previous Emperor led several campaigns to attack Wu, but there was never a time when he managed to advance beyond the Yangtze River. As of today, we don't have as large an army as he did, so all the more it will be even more difficult for us to win. The best course of action is to follow Fan Li's strategy by letting our troops rest and recuperate, and allowing the people to live in peace and go about with their normal livelihoods. We should also follow Guan Zhong's approach and focus on domestic affairs, adopt Zhao Chongguo's tuntian method, and emulate Confucius's style of diplomacy. If we do this for about ten years, those who are healthy and strong now will maintain their fitness, while boys would have grown up and become men. By then, we will have a larger army and a greater population who are more aware of what they need to do for the greater good of our state. They will be more willing and more determined to fight for our state. If we go to war then, we will definitely secure victory."
Cao Pi asked: "If we follow what you said, does that mean that we will have to leave it to our descendants to eliminate our enemies?" Xin Pi replied: "In the past, King Wen of Zhou knew that the time wasn't ripe yet, so he left it to his son King Wu of Zhou to eliminate King Zhou of Shang. If the time isn't ripe yet, I don't see why we shouldn't wait!"
Cao Pi did not heed Xin Pi's advice and went ahead with leading his troops to attack Wu. However, he ultimately aborted the campaign and retreated after reaching the northern banks of the Yangtze River.
Service under Cao Rui
Following Cao Pi's death in 226, his son Cao Rui succeeded him as the emperor of Wei. After his coronation, Cao Rui promoted Xin Pi from a village marquis to a district marquis under the title "Marquis of Ying District" (潁鄉侯) and awarded him a marquisate comprising 300 taxable households.
Tense relations with Liu Fang and Sun Zi
At the time, there were two Wei officials – Liu Fang (劉放) and Sun Zi (孫資) – who wielded much influence in the central government as they were highly trusted by Cao Rui. Many other officials tried to curry favour with them so that it would be beneficial to their careers. Only Xin Pi refused to have any dealings with the two of them.
Xin Pi's son, Xin Chang (辛敞), urged his father: "Liu Fang and Sun Zi are highly influential in the government. Everyone can't wait to get into their good books. I think you could lower yourself a little and try to get along well with them, or else they might slander you."
Xin Pi sternly replied:
"The Emperor may not be intelligent, but at least he isn't muddle-headed and stubborn. I live by my own code and I set my own standards. Even if I don't get along with Liu Fang and Sun Zi, at the most I won't become one of the Three Ducal Ministers. What greater harm can befall me? No person of good character will give up his principles just because he wants to be a Ducal Minister.
Some time later, an official Bi Gui submitted a memorial to Cao Rui as follows: "Wang Si (王思), the Supervisor of the Masters of Writing, is a diligent and accomplished senior official. However, he is not as good as Xin Pi in virtue and strategy. I recommend Xin Pi to replace Wang Si." After reading Bi Gui's memorial, Cao Rui sought Liu Fang and Sun Zi's opinions. They said: "Your Majesty chose Wang Si because you saw that he is a practical and hardworking person who doesn't care how others see him. Xin Pi may have a good and virtuous reputation, but he is too straightforward and domineering. Your Majesty should carefully consider this issue again." Cao Rui eventually did not replace Wang Si with Xin Pi, and instead promoted Xin Pi to serve as Minister of the Guards (衛尉).
Advising Cao Rui against his construction projects
During his reign, Cao Rui started labour-intensive extravagant palace construction/renovation projects which took a heavy toll on the common people, who were recruited as labourers for the projects. Xin Pi wrote a memorial to urge Cao Rui to stop the projects:
"I heard that Zhuge Liang is actively preparing for war, and that Sun Quan has been purchasing horses from Liaodong. It seems to me that they are planning to launch a coordinated attack on us. It is a time-honoured practice for states to always be on guard and prepare for unforeseen scenarios. We are, instead, working on such cost- and labour-intensive construction projects. Besides, the harvests in the past few years have not been good. The Classic of Poetry says: 'The people indeed are heavily burdened, but perhaps a little ease may be got for them. Let us cherish this centre of the kingdom, to secure the repose of the four quarters of it.'[b] I hope that Your Majesty will consider the bigger picture."
Cao Rui replied: "By working on these projects while Eastern Wu and Shu Han have yet to be vanquished, I am providing opportunities for outspoken and fame-seeking people to voice their opinions. It should be the collective responsibility of the people to construct and maintain the imperial capital of the Empire. By building a grander imperial capital now, I am actually helping to reduce the burden on future generations. This was the most basic approach that Xiao He adopted when he oversaw the construction of the imperial capital of the Han dynasty. You, as an important figure in the imperial court, should know this very well."
Cao Rui also wanted to flatten the top of Mount Mangdang (芒碭山; located north of present-day Yongcheng, Henan) and build a terrace on it so that he could view Meng Ford (孟津; present-day Mengjin County, Henan) from there.
When Xin Pi heard about it, he wrote to the emperor: "Heaven and Earth are meant to be as they are. If the land is high, then it should be high; if the land is low, then it should remain low. Attempting to modify the geography will not only be going against nature, but also a waste of manpower and resources, as well as a heavy burden on the people. Besides, if we turn the hills and mountains into flat lands, we will have no natural barriers to protect us when the river floods." Cao Rui heeded Xin Pi's advice and dropped his idea.
Response to Zhang He's death
In 231, after the Wei general Zhang He was killed in an ambush while pursuing Shu forces after the Battle of Mount Qi, Cao Rui lamented his death and told all his officials: "We lost Zhang He before we even conquer Shu. What will become of my generals?" Chen Qun remarked: "Zhang He was indeed a great general. He was a pillar of our state."
Although Xin Pi agreed that Zhang He's death was a huge loss for Wei, he believed that, on the inside, the Wei forces should not feel demoralised and, on the outside, show their enemy that they had become weaker without Zhang He. He rebuked Chen Qun: "Lord Chen, how can you say this? Towards the end of the Jian'an era, when everyone said the Empire couldn't do without Emperor Wu, the ruling dynasty still changed and Emperor Wen received the Mandate of Heaven. During the Huangchu era, everyone also said that we couldn't do without Emperor Wen, but he still passed away and His Majesty came to the throne. Surely, the Empire has more talents than just one Zhang He."
Chen Qun replied: "What Xin Pi said is also true." An amused Cao Rui quipped: "Lord Chen, you are really good at changing your stance."
The fifth-century historian Pei Songzhi argued that Xin Pi made an inappropriate comparison between Zhang He and the Wei emperors because generals and emperors were of different social status and hence should not be seen in the same light. In Pei Songzhi's opinion, Xin Pi should have instead compared Zhang He with other Wei generals such as Zhang Liao. He also pointed out the comparison did not reflect well on Xin Pi, who was known for being outspoken and upright, because he came close to degrading the status of the Wei emperors by making such a comparison.
Battle of Wuzhang Plains
In 234, the Battle of Wuzhang Plains took place between Wei and Shu forces, who were respectively led by Sima Yi and Zhuge Liang. When the situation came to a stalemate, Sima Yi, who held the position of General-in-Chief (大將軍), wrote to Cao Rui to seek permission to engage the enemy. Cao Rui denied him permission. Later, as the stalemate dragged on, Cao Rui became worried that Sima Yi would defy orders and attack the enemy, so he appointed Xin Pi as military adviser to the General-in-Chief, granted him an imperial sceptre (a symbol of the emperor's authority), and sent him to the frontline to ensure that Sima Yi followed orders and stayed in camp. Xin Pi carried out his task well, and no one dared to disobey him.
The Weilue recorded that Sima Yi wanted to order his troops to attack after the Shu forces goaded and provoked him numerous times. However, Xin Pi used the imperial sceptre to order them to remain in camp and refrain from engaging the enemy. Although Sima Yi was unhappy about it, he had no choice but to defer to Xin Pi.
After Zhuge Liang died of illness during the standoff, Xin Pi was recalled back to serve as Minister of the Guards (衞尉) again in the central government.
Xin Pi died on an unknown date but the Australian sinologist Rafe de Crespigny estimated that he died around 235.[a] The Wei government honoured him with the posthumous title "Marquis Su" (肅侯), which means "serious marquis".
Xin Pi's son, Xin Chang (辛敞), had the courtesy name Taiyong (泰雍). He inherited his father's peerage as the Marquis of Ying District (潁鄉侯) and served as an official in the Wei government. He rose to the position of Administrator of Henei Commandery (河內郡; around present-day Jiaozuo, Henan) during the Xianxi era (264–265). The Shiyu (世語) recorded that he later became the Minister of the Guards (衞尉) like his father.
- Xin Pi's date of death is not recorded in the Sanguozhi. The Australian sinologist Rafe de Crespigny writes that Xin Ping "died about 235".
- This line is quoted from the "Decade of Sheng Min" (生民之什) section of the "Greater odes of the kingdom" (大雅) in the Classic of Poetry. An English translation by James Legge is available here: https://ctext.org/book-of-poetry/decade-of-sheng-min
- de Crespigny (2007), pp. 896-897.
- (辛毗字佐治，潁川陽翟人也。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (其先建武中，自隴西東遷。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗隨兄評從袁紹。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (太祖為司空，辟毗，毗不得應命。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (及袁尚攻兄譚於平原，譚使毗詣太祖求和。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (英雄記曰：譚、尚戰於外門，譚軍敗奔北。郭圖說譚曰：「今將軍國小兵少，糧匱勢弱，顯甫之來，久則不敵。愚以為可呼曹公來擊顯甫。曹公至，必先攻鄴，顯甫還救。將軍引兵而西，自鄴以北皆可虜得。若顯甫軍破，其兵奔亡，又可斂取以拒曹公。曹公遠僑而來，糧餉不繼，必自逃去。比此之際，趙國以北皆我之有，亦足與曹公為對矣。不然，不諧。」譚始不納，後遂從之。問圖：「誰可使？」圖荅：「辛佐治可。」譚遂遣毗詣太祖。) Yingxiong Ji annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (太祖將征荊州，次于西平。毗見太祖致譚意，太祖大恱。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (後數日，更欲先平荊州，使譚、尚自相弊。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (他日置酒，毗望太祖色，知有變，以語郭嘉。嘉白太祖，太祖謂毗曰：「譚可信？尚必可克不？」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗對曰：「明公無問信與詐也，直當論其勢耳。袁氏本兄弟相伐，非謂他人能閒其間，乃謂天下可定於己也。今一旦求救於明公，此可知也。顯甫見顯思困而不能取，此力竭也。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (兵革敗於外，謀臣誅於內，兄弟讒鬩，國分為二；連年戰伐，而介冑生蟣蝨，加以旱蝗，饑饉並臻，國無囷倉，行無裹糧，天災應於上，人事困於下，民無愚智，皆知土崩瓦解，此乃天亡尚之時也。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (兵法稱有石城湯池帶甲百萬而無粟者，不能守也。今往攻鄴，尚不還救，即不能自守。還救，即譚踵其後。以明公之威，應困窮之敵，擊疲弊之寇，無異迅風之振秋葉矣。天以袁尚與明公，明公不取而伐荊州。荊州豐樂，國未有釁。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (仲虺有言：『取亂侮亡。』方今二袁不務遠略而內相圖，可謂亂矣；居者無食，行者無糧，可謂亡矣。朝不謀夕，民命靡繼，而不綏之，欲待他年；他年或登，又自知亡而改脩厥德，失所以用兵之要矣。今因其請救而撫之，利莫大焉。且四方之寇，莫大於河北；河北平，則六軍盛而天下震。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (太祖曰：「善。」乃許譚平，次于黎陽。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- Sima (1084), vol. 64.
- (先賢行狀曰： ... 初，譚之去，皆呼辛毗、郭圖家得出，而辛評家獨被收。及配兄子開城門內兵，時配在城東南角樓上，望見太祖兵入，忿辛、郭壞敗兾州，乃遣人馳詣鄴獄，指殺仲治家。是時，辛毗在軍，聞門開，馳走詣獄，欲解其兄家，兄家已死。) Xianxian Xingzhuang annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 6.
- (是日生縛配，將詣帳下，辛毗等逆以馬鞭擊其頭，罵之曰：「奴，汝今日真死矣！」配顧曰：「狗輩，正由汝曹破我兾州，恨不得殺汝也！且汝今日能殺生我邪？」) Xianxian Xingzhuang annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 6.
- (有頃，公引見，謂配：「知誰開卿城門？」配曰：「不知也。」曰：「自卿子榮耳。」配曰：「小兒不足用乃至此！」公復謂曰：「曩日孤之行圍，何弩之多也？」配曰：「恨其少耳！」公曰：「卿忠於袁氏父子，亦自不得不爾也。」有意欲活之。配旣無撓辭，而辛毗等號哭不已，乃殺之。) Xianxian Xingzhuang annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 6.
- (明年攻鄴，克之，表毗為議郎。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- Sima (1084), vol. 68.
- (乆之，太祖遣都護曹洪平下辯，使毗與曹休參之，令曰：「昔高祖貪財好色，而良、平匡其過失。今佐治、文烈憂不輕矣。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (軍還，為丞相長史。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- Sima (1084), vol. 69.
- (文帝踐阼，遷侍中，賜爵關內侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (時議改正朔。毗以魏氏遵舜、禹之統，應天順民；至於湯、武，以戰伐定天下，乃改正朔。孔子曰「行夏之時」，左氏傳曰「夏數為得天正」，何必期於相反。帝善而從之。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝欲徙兾州士家十萬戶實河南。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (時連蝗民饑，群司以為不可，而帝意甚盛。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗與朝臣俱求見，帝知其欲諫，作色以見之，皆莫敢言。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗曰：「陛下欲徙士家，其計安出？」帝曰：「卿謂我徙之非邪？」毗曰：「誠以為非也。」帝曰：「吾不與卿共議也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗曰：「陛下不以臣不肖，置之左右，廁之謀議之官，安得不與臣議邪！臣所言非私，乃社稷之慮也，安得怒臣！」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝不荅，起入內；毗隨而引其裾，帝遂奮衣不還，良乆乃出，曰：「佐治，卿持我何太急邪？」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗曰：「今徙，旣失民心，又無以食也。」帝遂徙其半。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (嘗從帝射雉，帝曰：「射雉樂哉！」毗曰：「於陛下甚樂，而於羣下甚苦。」帝默然，後遂為之稀出。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (上軍大將軍曹真征朱然于江陵，毗行軍師。還，封廣平亭侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝欲大興軍征吳，毗諫曰：「吳、楚之民，險而難禦，道隆後服，道洿先叛，自古患之，非徒今也。今陛下祚有海內，夫不賔者，其能乆乎？昔尉佗稱帝，子陽僭號，歷年未幾，或臣或誅。何則，違逆之道不乆全，而大德無所不服也。方今天下新定，土廣民稀。夫廟筭而後出軍，猶臨事而懼，況今廟筭有闕而欲用之，臣誠未見其利也。先帝屢起銳師，臨江而旋。今六軍不增於故，而復循之，此未易也。今日之計，莫若脩范蠡之養民，法管仲之寄政，則充國之屯田，明仲尼之懷遠；十年之中，彊壯未老，童齓勝戰，兆民知義，將士思奮，然後用之，則役不再舉矣。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝曰：「如卿意，更當以虜遺子孫邪？」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗對曰：「昔周文王以紂遺武王，惟知時也。苟時未可，容得已乎！」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝竟伐吳，至江而還。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- Sima (1084), vol. 70.
- (明帝即位，進封潁鄉侯，邑三百戶。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (時中書監劉放、令孫資見信於主，制斷時政，大臣莫不交好，而毗不與往來。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗子敞諫曰：「今劉、孫用事，衆皆影附，大人宜小降意，和光同塵；不然必有謗言。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗正色曰：「主上雖未稱聦明，不為闇劣。吾之立身，自有本未。就與劉、孫不平，不過令吾不作三公而已，何危害之有？焉有大丈夫欲為公而毀其高節者邪？」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (宂從僕射畢軌表言：「尚書僕射王思精勤舊吏，忠亮計略不如辛毗，毗宜代思。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝以訪放、資，放、資對曰：「陛下用思者，誠欲取其効力，不貴虛名也。毗實亮直，然性剛而專，聖慮所當深察也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (遂不用。出為衞尉。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝方脩殿舍，百姓勞役，毗上疏曰：「竊聞諸葛亮講武治兵，而孫權巿馬遼東，量其意指，似欲相左右。備豫不虞，古之善政，而今者宮室大興，加連年穀麥不收。詩云：『民亦勞止，迄可小康，惠此中國，以綏四方。』唯陛下為社稷計。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝報曰：「二虜未滅而治宮室，直諫者立名之時也。夫王者之都，當及民勞兼辦，使後世無所復增，是蕭何為漢規摹之略也。今卿為魏重臣，亦宜解其大歸。」) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (帝又欲平北芒，令於其上作臺觀，則見孟津。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗諫曰：「天地之性，高高下下，今而反之，旣非其理；加以損費人功，民不堪役。且若九河盈溢，洪水為害，而丘陵皆夷，將何以禦之？」帝乃止。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- Sima (1084), vol. 72.
- (魏略曰：諸葛亮圍祁山，不克，引退。張郃追之，為流矢所中死。帝惜郃，臨朝而歎曰：「蜀未平而郃死，將若之何！」司空陳羣曰：「郃誠良將，國所依也。」) Weilue annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (毗心以為郃雖可惜，然已死，不當內弱主意，而示外以不大也。乃持羣曰：「陳公，是何言歟！當建安之末，天下不可一日無武皇帝也，及委國祚，而文皇帝受命，黃初之世，亦謂不可無文皇帝也，及委棄天下，而陛下龍興。今國內所少，豈張郃乎？」) Weilue annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (陳羣曰：「亦誠如辛毗言。」帝笑曰：「陳公可謂善變矣。」) Weilue annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (臣松之以為擬人必於其倫，取譬宜引其類，故君子於其言，無所苟而已矣。毗欲弘廣主意，當舉若張遼之疇，安有於一將之死而可以祖宗為譬哉？非所宜言，莫過於茲，進違其類，退似諂佞，佐治剛正之體，不宜有此。) Pei Songzhi's annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (魏略旣已難信，習氏又從而載之，竊謂斯人受誣不少。) Pei Songzhi's annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (青龍二年，諸葛亮率衆出渭南。先是，大將軍司馬宣王數請與亮戰，明帝終不聽。是歲恐不能禁，乃以毗為大將軍軍師，使持節；六軍皆肅，準毗節度，莫敢犯違。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (魏略曰：宣王數數欲進攻，毗禁不聽。宣王雖能行意，而每屈於毗。) Weilue annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (亮卒，復還為衞尉。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (薨，謚曰肅侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (子敞嗣，咸熈中為河內太守。) Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- (世語曰：敞字泰雍，官至衞尉。) Shiyu annotation in Weilue annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 25.
- Chen, Shou (3rd century). Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi).
- de Crespigny, Rafe (2007). A Biographical Dictionary of Later Han to the Three Kingdoms 23-220 AD. Leiden: Brill. ISBN 9789004156050.
- Pei, Songzhi (5th century). Annotations to Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi zhu).
- Sima, Guang (1084). Zizhi Tongjian.