You are on page 1of 203



Introduction to the Tables of the Hundred Officials

In the Chien Han- shu

A completely annotated translation of the introductory essay to the

Tables of the Hundred Officials (Han shu 19A) was to have been
included in Volume Four of Homer Dubs translation of the Han shu. The
text reproduced here was found among the materials belonging to the Han
Dynasty History Project at the University of Washington. Following the
death in 1995 of Professor Jack L Dull, the projects director, these
materials were scattered. It has been through the good offices of Professor
Kent Guy, director of the China Program at the University of Washington,
and especially Professor Karen Turner of the The College of Holy Cross
that e-Asia has been able to obtain this copy of the draft translation and
make it available on line.
It is clear from correspondence also found among the project
materials that Volume Four was to contain the other tables (biao) from the
Han shu. A draft Forward states that Dubs original manuscript
comprised over 1000 pages of typescript, and it mentions several other
chapters and their translators. Although there was considerable interest in
publishing the volume, the effort foundered upon the shoals of Dubs
insistence on using his Wade-Dubs system of romanization that was
meant to eliminate completely the need to use Chinese characters. None
of the presses Dubs contacted was willing to risk publishing a work that
utilized a system that was not accepted by others in the field. The
correspondence seems to suggest that toward the end of his life, Dubs
was reluctantly willing to accede to the use of the Wade-Giles system,
though he continued to argue for the superiority of his own.
The draft Forward states that unidentified friends of Homer Dubs,
in part from a conviction of the value of the work and in part as an
expression of affection and scholarly gratitude to its author took it upon
themselves to correct the failings of the typescript . . . without doing any
more violence than necessary to the original Dubs version. In substance,
both the translation and the notes are essentially as Dubs left them; much
of the supplementary material has had to be completely rewritten without, it
is hoped, anything but modest departure from what Dubs himself might
have said. It is unclear whether by supplementary material is meant
material included in the notes of the present draft or whether, as seems

likely, it refers to additional items. As for the problem of using Chinese

characters that the Wade-Dubs system was meant to address, the
friends proposed to deal with this by adopting the numbers of the
characters found in R.H. Mathews Chinese-English Dictionary.
While the present draft is clearly by Dubs and his collaborators, the
work of other hands is is also apparent. (See, for example, Government
XIV Ba, 25, n. 1 under Colonel Director for Investigation and Government
XIV Ba, 29, n. 15 under Noble Ranks.) Those familiar with Dubs work will
note some divergences from prior usage. For example, jun , which Dubs
(and most others since him) rendered as commandery is here translated
as department, an apparent adaptation of French usage. Whether this
was done by Dubs himself or someone else is not known. The inclusion of
Chinese characters should make it possible for the reader to identify such
alternate usages.
Readers will find Dubs notes to the Table to be especially rich.
Much of the material found in the original commentary to the Han shu and
in Wang Hsien-chiens sub commentary in his Han shu pu-chu has been
translated or summarized by the Dubs team. Moreover, they made
extensive use of traditional Chinese scholarship. Unfortunately, the notes
as we now have them cite these works mostly by using abbreviations, and
it is not always possible to determine the work or the edition cited. Where
we have been able to deduce this information, we have included it. While
we have made a few stylistic changes and made edits to clarify meaning,
the text has been left largely it was. Such edits as have been made are
enclosed in { }. All other brackets were in the original.
It may fairly asked whether it is worthwhile investing the effort to
make such dated and incomplete material available. We believe that it is.
The translation was done by knowledgeable and talented scholars working
under Dubs direction. It consists largely of important primary materials
and utilizes the more significant traditional scholarship. As such, Dubs
translation and notes are important in their own right and they provide an
important complement to Hans Bielensteins The Bureaucracy of Han
Times (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1980) and his The
Restoration of the Han Dynasty Volume IV: The Government, Bulletin of
the Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, 51 (1979). Beyond that, the
chapter is a small but important piece in the mosaic that is early Western


Hsn Yeh . Chien Han chi


Chou-li chu-shu .

CYHs (?)
Duyvendak, 28 J.J.L. Duyvendak, trans. The Book of Lord Shang.
London: Probsthain, 1928.

Er-shih-wu-shi pu-pien Shanghai: Kai-ming

shu-ch, 1936-37.


Wei Hung . Han-chiu-yi


Hsn Yeh . Han chi . (SBCK ed.)

Han-chiu-i pu-i

Wei Hung . Han-chiu-i pu-i


Huan Tan (43 B.C. 28 A.D.) Hsin lun


Han yi chu (?)


Ssu-ma Piao (c. 240-c. 306). Hou Han chih. (Dubs

sometimes cites this work as HHc and sometimes as
HHs T. In either case, the reference is to the Po-na
edition of HHs. [See next])


Fan Yeh (398-445). Hou Han shu , Po-na edition


Hui Tung (1697-1758). Hou Han shu puchu


Hu Kuang . Han kuan jie gu


Chen Shu-yung (1859-1888). Han kuan ta wen

. Chi chen tang tsung-shu . In
Tsung-shu chi-cheng hs pien, shih, 41.869-901.


Ying Shao . Han kuan I

Hkicc (?)

Huan Tan . Hsin lun


Chien Ta-chao (1744-1813) Han shu pien-i


Shen Chin-han (1775-1832). Han shu shu-cheng


Ku Yen-wu (1613-1682). Ji-chih lu . Sppy



Kato Shigeru (Shigeshi). Kandai ni okeru kokka zaisei to

no kubetsu narabi ni taishitsu zaisei ippan


Kuan-tzu .


Wang Kuo-wei (1877-1927). Kuan-tang chi-lin

Kytk (?)

Li chi chu-shu .


L-shih chun-chiu


douard Chavannes, tr. Memoires historique


Mao shih chu-shu

PKLT (?)

Y Shih-nan (558-638). Pei-tang shu chao


Read, 36

Bernard E. Read. Chinese Medicinal Plants from the Pen

Tsao Kang Mu A.D. 1596 of a Botanical, Chemical and
Pharmacological Reference List. 3rd ed. (Shanghai

Scchc (?)

Shang-chn shu .


Wang Mingsheng (1722-1798). Shi-chi-shi



Qian Daxin (1728-1804). San shi shi-i


San-fu huang-tu


San-fu huang-tu (sp?) (?)




Takigawa Kametar . Shiki kaich ksh

. 10 vols. Tky: Th bunka gakuin, 1932-34.


Shan-hai ching


Shang-shu ta chuan


Shuo-wen chieh-tzu


Shuo-wen chieh-tzu chu


Tung-kuan Han chi .


Tang liu tien .

Tung tien

Tu Yu (735-812). Tung tien . Taipei: Hsin-hsing

shu-tien, 1963.

Wilhelm FH

Richard Wilhelm, trans. Frhling und Herbst des L Bu



Yi tung chih .


Yen-tieh lun .


Yi-wen lei-ch .

Government XIV Ba

Introduction to the Tables of the Hundred Officials

In the Chien Han- shu
The I [Chingl declares that Fu Hsi (), Shen Nung () and
Huang Ti () created instruction and moral influences for the people
and the [Tso] Chuan gives an account of the offices.2 Because [the omen
of a dragon announced the coming of] Fu Hsi he had dragon officers and
named their offices [after different colored dragons].3 [An omen of fire
announced the coming of] Shen.Nung so he had fire officers and named
and their offices [after different types of fire]. [An omen in the clouds
announced the coming of] Huang Ti so he had cloud officers and named
their offices [after different colored clouds].5 [A phoenix omen announced
the coming of] Shao Hao so he had phoenix officers and named their
offices [after different types of birds].6 Since Chuan Hs (), the
peoples ministers were instituted and named after affairs of the people.
There were the offices of wood [held by] Chung , of Fire [held
by] Li, of Earth [held by Kou Lung ], of Metal [held by Kai
], and of Water [ held by Hsiu Chih-his ]. But this matter is
already in the remote past.9
It is recorded in the Shu [Ching] that in the time of Tang [Yao] and
Y [Shun] [the two] Hsis and [the two] Hos, [in all] four persons, were
ordered in accordance with the heavenly bodies () to inform the
people [of the proper] seasons [for agricultural activities], the Ssu-yao (
) was consulted in order to raise up worthy and able [men] and suppress
the mean and vile and raise up men of ability from obscure places. The
twelve [chou ] shepherds () were gentle to the distant and kind to the
Y was master of the official works , regulated the water and
land; Chi was master of the millet to sow the hundred cereals;
Hsieh was made master of the multitude to propagate the five
instructions ; Kao-yao was made Judge to rectify by the five
punishments; Chui was made master of works to take charge of

vessels and implements. Yi was made forester to take care of the

grass and trees, birds and beasts; Po-I was made master of rites ,
to direct the three [types of] rites; Kuei was made director of music
to bring into harmony spirits and men; Lung was made] conveyer of
words to give out and bring in [reports of] imperial decrees. [The
offices of ] the Hsia and Yin [dynasties] are not known. The Chou offices
were then complete. [There were] the Grand Administrator of the Heaven
Office , the Master of the Multitude of the Earth Office ,
Master of Rites Of the Spring Office , Master of Army of the
Summer Office , Master of Punishments of the Autumn Office
and Master of Works of the Winter Office . These were the
six ministers.13 Each had subordinates and official duties and were used [in
administering] the hundred affairs.
The Grand Preceptor , Grand Tutor , and Grand Protector
, these were the Three Dukes . They assisted the Son of Heaven.
They sat and discussed government and none did not generally
administer.14 Therefore, they did not take one official duty as the name of
the office. There were also established three Juniors and their assistants.
The Junior Preceptor , Junior Tutor , and Junior Protector
, these constituted the Ministers Extraordinary, and with the six
ministers made nine.15 The Chi 16 says that the Three Dukes were
offices which did not have to be regularly filled, saying that when there
were proper persons then they were appointed. Such were Shun under
Yao, I Yin under Tang, Chou Kung and Shao Kung in Chou.17
Some say the Minister of War is in charge of Heaven, the Minister of
the Multitude is in charge of Man, and the Minister of Works is in charge of
Earth. These constituted the Three Dukes. The Ssu-yeh were called
the Feudal Lords of the Four Directions.
From the time that Chou decayed, the offices lost their effectiveness
and the hundred official duties were in chaos. The Warring States fought
each other and each changed [the system and established something]
different. Chin unified the Empire and established the title of Huang-ti and
established the official functions of the hundred offices. The Han took in
and followed [the Chin system] and did not change it [because it was] clear,
simple and easy [to operate] and accorded with the times. Later there were
a few changes.

When Wang Mang usurped the throne, he admired and followed the
ancient [system of] offices, and the officials and people were not at ease.
[He also engaged in] much tyrannical government. Subsequently, he
ended by bringing disorder and his own destruction. Therefore, [I] briefly
put forth the general division [of the offices] in order to understand the
past and present and to illustrate the principle of reviewing the old to know
the new.


For the I-Ching discussion of these duties, cf. Wilhelm-Baynes, Vol. I,


Cf. Legge, Vol V, part II, p. 667. Couvreur, III, 276, Speech by Tan-tzu
. This statement refers to the naming of the offices by Fu Hsi, Shen-nung,
Huang-ti and Shao Mao described in our text in the next passage. Legge
translates the Tso commentary as follows: When the viscount of Tan
came to our court, the duke feasted with him, and Chaou-tsze asked what
was the reason that Shaou-haou named his officers after birds. The
viscount replied, He was my ancestor, and I know [all about it] . Before him,
Hwang-te came to his rule with [the omen of] a cloud, and therefore he had
cloud officers, naming them after clouds; Yen-te (Shin-nung) came to him
with the [omen of] fire, and therefore he had fire officers, naming them
after fire; Kung-kung came to him with [the omen of] water, and therefore
he had water officers, naming them after water; Tae-haou (Fuh-he) came
to him with [the omen of] dragon, and therefore he had dragon officers,
naming them after dragons. When my ancestor Shaou-haou Che
succeeded to the kingdom, there appeared at that time a phoenix, and
therefore he arranged his government under the nomenclature of birds,
making bird officers, and naming them after birds. There were so-and-so
Pheonix-bird, minister of the calendar; so and so Dark-bird (The swallow),
master of the equinoxes; so and so Pih-chaou (The shrike), master of the
solstices; so and so Green-bird (A kind of sparrow), master of the
beginning [of spring and autumn]; and so and so Carnation-bird (The
golden pheasant), master of the close [of spring and autumn]; so and
so Chuh-kw, minister of Instruction; so and so Tseu-kw, minister of war;

so and so She-kw, minister of Works; so and so Shwang-kw, minister of

crime; so and so Kwuh-kw, minister of Affairs. These five Kw kept the
people collected together. The five Che (Pheasants) presided over the
five classes of mechanics; they saw to the provision of implements and
utensils, and to the correctness of the measures of length and capacity,
keeping things equal among the people. The nine Hoo were the ministers
of the nine departments of husbandry, and kept the people from becoming

Ying Shao says he used the word dragon to record the chief officials.
Therefore they became dragon officials. The Spring Office became the
Green Dragon (), the Summer Office became the Red Dragon (),
the Autumn Office became the White Dragon (), the Winter Office
became the Black Dragon (), and the Center Office became the Yellow
Dragon (). Chang Yen comments When Pao Hsi was about to ascend
the throne a spiritual dragon bearing a tablet appeared. So he used [the
word dragon) to name his officers and offices.

Ying Shao says Fire is virtue. Therefore [he became] the Brilliant
Emperor . The Spring Office became a the Great Fire (); the
Summer Office became the Chun Fire (); the Autumn Office became
the West Fire (); the Winter Office became the North Fire (); the
Center Office became the Center Fire (). Chang Yen
says [at the time of] Shen Nung there was the good omen of a fairy star.
Therefore [he] used [the word fire] to name his officers and offices.

Ying Shao says When Huang-ti received the mandate there was a good
omen of a cloud. Therefore [he] used cloud to regulate affairs. For this
reason it is said the Spring Office became the Green Cloud (); the
Summer Office became the Red Cloud (); the Autumn Office became
the White Cloud () the Winter Office became the Black Cloud ();
the Center Office became the Yellow Cloud (). Chang Yen says at
the time Huang-ti [ascended the throne] there was the response () of a
bright colored cloud. Therefore [he] used [the word cloud] to name his
officers and offices.

Chang Yen says at Shao Haos ascending the throne a male phoenix
appeared. Therefore [he] used [the name of birds] to name the offices.
The [office of the] phoenix bird became the minister of the calendar ();
the [officer of the] swallow () became the master of equinoxes ();
the [office of the] shrike () became the master of the solstices; the
[office of the] sparrow () became the master of the beginning [of
spring and autumn] ; the [office of the] ring-marked pheasant ()
became the master of the beginning [of winter]. Yen Shih-ku says the
Dark-bird is a swallow (). The Po-chao is a shrike (Lanius bucephalus
). The Green Bird is the Oriole. The Tan Bird is the Ring-necked
pheasant ().

Ying Shao says Chuan Hs was the one who succeeded Shao Hao.
They were no longer able to characterize offices after these distant things
[because they no longer had special envoys from heaven]. So for the first
time official functions were used to name the offices. (Cf. Legge, Vol. V,
part II, pp. 667-65; Couvreur. III, p. 277). The Spring Office became the
minister of Wood (); the Summer Office became the Minister of Fire
(); the Autumn Office became the Minister of Metal (); the Winter
Office became the Minister of Water (); the Center Office became the
Minister of Earth ().

I have here incorporated the commentary of Ying Shao and Yen Shih-ku
into the text in order to translate this somewhat garbled text. According to
Ying Shao, Shan Hao had four uncles (). Chung (), who became the
Kou-mang (); Kai () who became the Ju-shou (); and Hsiu
Chi-hsi () {The Zhonghua shuju editors treat this as two names Xiu
and Xi} became the Hsan-min (). Chuan Hsu had a son named Li who
became the Chu-jung (). Kung-kung () had a son named Kou
Lung who became the Hou-tu (). Therefore, there were the affixes of
the five elements. All were enfeoffed as Superior Dukes and are sacrificed
to as honored spirits.

Following Yen Shih-kus suggestion, I read the word in the phrase

of our text as meaning the matter is already in the remote past.


Chang Yen says the words means Hsi Chung (), Hsi Shu (),
Ho Chung () and Ho Shu (). Cf. Bernhard Karlgren, The Book of
Documents, pp. 3-5. Wang Hsien-chien notes that in the Po-hu Tung in
the chapter The Enfeoffing of Feudal Lords the shepherds are called
chou-po (). Here it is recorded What does Chou-po mean? Po means
chang chief. [The King]. selects [from among] the worthy and capable
[Lords] one to act as chief over one province chou; he is then called po.
The Wang chih says: [For the government of the territory] outside the
thousand li [ comprising the domain of the Son of Heaven two] Regional
Chiefs fang-po are appointed. Five principalities form a shu (), governed
by a chang (); ten principalities form a lien (), governed by shuai ();
thirty principalities form a tsu (), governed by a cheng (); two hundred
and ten principalities form together a province chou () governed by a
po (). Wang, continues quoting the Po-hu-tung, Why [ was this chief]
under [Yao of] Tang and [Shun of] Y called mu ()? Shepherds [ Yao
and Shun] honoured [the principle of] Substance, they sent their great
officers to go and shepherd the Feudal Lords. Therefore they were called
shepherds. For [each of the four] quarters three men were appointed [as
shepherds], so that there were in all twelve. cf. Tjan Tjoe Som, Po hu
Tung The Comprehensive Discussions in The White Tiger Hall, II:412-13.

Yen Shih-ku comments, means . The ancients were cave dwellers.

[He was] in charge of cutting through the earth to make caves for the
people to live in. Wang Hsien-chien, quoting the Po hu Tung, points out
that the ssu-kung () has supervision over the earth () although the
word empty is used instead of the word earth. For the whole quote see
Tjan Tjoe Som, II:412.


See Karlgren, The Book of Documents, pp. 5-7.

See Tjan Tjoe Som, I:229, 290, note 164. Legge, The Chinese Classics,
Vol. III, pp. 528-30. (Legge, The Sacred Books of the East: The Texts of
Confucianism, p. 228-29.)


Legge, Classics, Vol. III, pp. 527ff., and Legge, The Sacred Books of the
East, p. 227-28.



Probably refers to the Wang tu chi ( ) one of the lost chapters of

the collection of rites books.

For information on these figures, see the pertinent sections in the Book
of History, Legge, Classics, Vol. III. Shao Kung, son of King Wen, is also
known as Shih ( ) and is dealt with in two sections of the Book of History,
The Announcement of the Duke of Shao, and The Prince of Shih.

Refers to the Han-shih Wai-chuan. Cf. Hightowers, translation, ch. VIII, p.

274, where he translates the passage as follows: What are the san-kung?
They are the ssu-kung, the ssu-ma, and the ssu-tu. The ssu-ma is in
charge of heaven; the ssu-kung is in charge of earth; the ssu-tu is in
charge of man. So when yin and yang are not adjusted, when [the weather
of] the four seasons is not seasonable, when the stars and constellations
miss their course, and calamities are out of the ordinary, the responsibility
devolves upon the ssu-ma. When mountains and hills fall and collapse,
when rivers and streams do not flow, when the five cereals do not grow
and plants do not thrive, the responsibility devolves upon the ssu-kung.
When ruler and subject are not in their correct places, when the Way of
Man is not harmonious, when in the state thieves and rebels are numerous,
and inferiors resent their superiors, the responsibility devolves upon the
ssu-tu. The san-kung take charge of their offices [each] anxious about his
own duties, each offering his suggestions, and each clarifying what is
obscure [in his task]: such are the duties of the san-kung. Cf. also Tjan
Tjoe Som, Po hu Tung, II, 410-412; Forke, Lun Heng, vol. II, p. 342.

Sun Hsing-yen, Shang-shu Chin-ku-wen Chu shu thinks that the opinion
that the ssu-yeh means the Feudal Lords of the Four Directions is an
opinion of the ku-wen school. Karlgren, Glosses on the Book of History, p.
261 adheres to the theory that it is the title of one man and in his

translation The Book of Documents translates accordingly. In the

Ta-chan [ section of the Book of] History the ssu-yao are the eight
pa (). Cheng says the Eight pa occupied eight chou () outside
the royal domain. Pa were not established within the imperial domain. The
Preface to the Chou-li quotes Chengs note saying the ssu-yao were
officials of the four seasons and in charge of the affairs of the four
mountains. They began in the time of Hsi-ho (). Since Yao divided the
Yin and Yang to make the four seasons he commanded Hsi-ho and others
to be their officials and to take charge of the affairs of the borders and
mountains. Therefore as they were in charge of the four mountains they
were called the four Po (). When [Yao] died, the Ssu-yao were divided
and became the Eight Po. All were princely officials. Of these eight only the
four people [are known]. There are no records of the other four people.
Chengs edition of the Ta-chan [section of the Book of History] is based
upon the theory of the New Text School. When they entered [the capital]
they were ministers of the Son of Heaven. When sent out [of the capital]
they were chief ministers () of the feudal lords. Wei Chao notes to
the Kuo-y [to the effect that] the Ssu-yao was the name of an official in
charge of the sacrifices of the four mountains and became Po () to the
feudal lords is the same idea as Chengs.

Government XIV Ba 1
The Chancellor of State
The Chancellorship of State hsiang-kuo () and the Imperial
Chancellorship cheng-hsiang () were both Chin offices. They had
golden seals with purpleseal-cords. Their duty was to assist the Son of
Heaven and to aid him in directing the multifarious matters [of the
government]. The Chin [bureaucracy included] a senior () and a junior
() [imperial chancellor].
When Emperor Kao took the throne, he established [only] one
Imperial Chancellor. In his eleventh year, he changed the name [of this
office to that of] Chancellor of State, giving it a green seal cord. [Emperor]
Hsiao-hui and the Empress [Dowager ne L of Emperor] Kao established
junior and senior imperial chancellors. In his first year, Emperor Wen again
established [only] one Imperial Chancellor.
[This office] had two Chief Secretaries () who were ranked at a
thousand piculs.
In [the reign of] Emperor Ai, in the second year of [the period]
Yan-shou, the name was changed to that of Grand Minister over the
Masses ta ssu-tu ().
In [the reign of] Emperor Wu, in the fifth year of [the period]
Yan-shou, there was first established a Director of Justice ssu-chih ()
[to the Imperial Chancellor, who was ranked as] equivalent to 2000 piculs.
He had charge of assisting the Imperial Chancellor by reporting those who
violated the laws.6
Hs 19A.3a

A slight difficulty is created here by the fact that the text mentions two
titles whereas only one single office is really meant. The usual name for
this office was Imperial Chancellor (cheng-hsiang) {sometimes
erroneously rendered Lieutenant Chancellor}. One or two especially

distinguished chancellors, in particular Hsiao Ho the first Imperial

Chancellor, were honored by raising the title of their office to that of
Chancellor State of State (hsiang-kuo). Otherwise, there seems to have
been no difference in the meaning of the two titles. This office was also
established in the courts of the Kings but in 145 B.C., as part of the policy
of glorifying the central government, the title of cheng-hsiang in the courts
of vassal kings was changed to the single word hsiang which we translate
as Chancellor. (HFHD, I.322).
While the imperial chancellor was nominally the head of the imperial
government, such was not always the case. The locus of power in the
central government varied in different periods. Down to the reign of
Emperor Wu, the Imperial Chancellor controlled the government along with
the Grandee Secretary and the Grand Commandant. Together they were
the three highest officials and collectively were known as the San-kung (
). In this period, the emperor did not rule but merely reigned, choosing
his officials, especially the Imperial Chancellor, and delegating power to
them while he retained the veto power (HFHD, II.8-11). Emperor Wu upset
this arrangement. Wu instituted the beginning of centralizing control in the
inner court largely by the creation of the office of Intendant of Affairs of
the Masters of Writing. He also followed the practice of periodically
executing his Imperial Chancellors to prevent them from amassing power.
Under Wu, the Imperial Chancellor, while still nominally the head of the
government, in fact became an executive officer carrying out the behests
of others and exercising his own initiative only in minor matters. After
Emperor Wu, the government was controlled by the Grand Minister of War
who was usually concurrently Intendant of Affairs of the Masters of Writing.
This position was nearly always in the hands of the emperors maternal
uncle. This policy of centralization of control in the inner court resulted in
domination of the government by Empress Dowager, consort clans and
eunuchs which is so characteristic of Han government throughout the
entire period.
The Imperial Chancellor had very broad powers over the
bureaucracy. The Emperor usually referred matters of government
business to him with power to act without further reference to the Emperor.
Matters might also be referred by the emperor to the Grandee Secretary
who similarly disposed of them. If an appointment was to be made to an
office ranking at 2000 piculs, the Imperial Chancellor discussed the
prospective appointee with the Emperor, and, if the person was approved,
the appointment was made (cf. Hs 56.22b). If an appointment to an office

ranking at 600 piculs or less was to be made, the Imperial Chancellor made
it upon his own authority without consulting the Emperor. When
subordinates to officials ranking at 2000 piculs were to be appointed,
these officials first discussed the names of prospective appointees with the
Imperial Chancellor, and, upon receiving his approval, made the
appointments. (Hs 59.1b) If important courtiers or ministers committed a
crime, the Imperial Chancellor sent a subordinate to investigate the matter
without waiting to memorialize the throne or beg for permission (Hs 70.15b).
Imperial consent was required, however, for a capital sentence for those
ranking as Gentleman-of-the-Palace or higher. The Imperial Chancellor
did not always see the Emperor frequently. After 68 B.C. (HFHD, II.218)
the emperor held court every five days. If there was any government
business for the emperor to deal with, the Imperial Chancellor reported it to
the throne in a memorial and was accordingly summoned to an audience
(cf. Hs 71.7a). When the Emperor did not attend to government matters
himself. the Imperial Chancellor took the place of the Emperor and decided
matters on his own authority (cf. Hs 46.6b, 7a).
The throne periodically requested the Imperial Chancellor and
sometimes other ministers, such as the Grandee Secretary, to recommend
to the throne for appointments persons with certain specified qualities. The
Inspectors of Regional Divisions and other ranking officials were also
invited to submit recommendations for appointments and in this case the
names were sent to the Imperial Chancellor who examined
themoccasionally the emperor himself set the questions and read the
repliesand selected the best persons in each of three categories: those
who understood a classic, those who understood the law-code, and those
who had ability in dealing with troublesome cases. For appointments as
grandee-remonstrants, gentlemen-consultants, erudits, tutors to vassal
kings, and prefects of the gentlemen-of-the-palace, persons who
understood a classic were selected. For the Commandant of Justices
judge, his superintendent, and his referee, persons who understood the
code were selected. For the prefects of Chang-an and the counties in the
three capital departments, persons who had ability in dealing with
troublesome cases were selected. Such appointees were tried out as
acting (shou ) occupants of this post being only allowed to wear the
small bonnet. After a full year, they became titular occupants of their post
and, when they guided the imperial chariot, they were allowed to wear the
large bonnet. (Han-chiu-i, A.7a) When the departments sent to the capital
persons who were recommended to the central government as worthy and
good and of abundant talents, they were sent to an office in the yamen of

the Imperial Chancellor where their accomplishments, appearance, and

their age were recorded (HFHD, I.131, 132).
When in a department or kingdom a law-case was decided and it was
claimed not to have been decided in accordance with the law, then the
matter was reported to the Imperial Chancellor and he sent one of his
division heads to investigate the matter (Hs 83.5a). When there were
bandits in a department or kingdom, the Imperial Chancellor and Grandee
Secretary together sent division-heads to arrest these robbers (Hs 83.6b).
If the power of the central government had to be exercised in a department
or kingdom, these two ministers similarly sent division heads to take
charge of the matter (Hs 84.20a-b).
When each year, every department sent its assistant governor or a
kingdom sent the chief clerk to the chancellor of a kingdom to bring to the
central government the yearly accounts and reports, they were submitted
to the Imperial Chancellor and the Grandee Secretary for review.
Previously the Inspectors of Regional Divisions had submitted their reports
upon these same departments and kingdoms, so that the Imperial
Chancellor had an independent check upon them. When these officials
were about to leave the capital, the Imperial Chancellor read to them an
imperial edict giving directions for governing
Memorials by courtiers or lesser people were sent to the masters of
writing who presented them to the emperor. The emperor made his
response and sent the memorials to the Grandee Secretary who sent them
on to the Imperial Chancellor for discussion. (cf. Sc 60.1b, 2a, 6a) He then
decided what should be done. Imperial mandates to the vassal kings were
eventually sent to the Imperial Chancellor (Hs 1.15a-b). Memorials from
the departments or kingdoms were sent to the Imperial Chancellor or the
Grandee Secretary who could report them to the throne.
In difficult matters, the imperial Chancellor frequently was summoned
to his yamen for the purpose of holding a discussion for the whole imperial
court, which included both the nobles and the bureaucrats down to the
expectant appointees and gentlemen. There was a special hall in the
yamen of the Imperial Chancellor for these discussions. The Emperor
sometimes attended in person and at times ordered that such discussions
be held. The opinions of the assemblage were reported to the emperor
and such opinions are mentioned in existing documents (Hs 84.3a). Final
decision remained with the emperor and he occasionally disregarded

From the time that Emperor Wu abolished the office of the Grand
Commandant in Nov/Dec. 140 B.C. the duties of this official were given to
the Imperial Chancellor so that both civil and military power were
possessed by the Imperial Chancellor. This arrangement probably lasted,
however, only from 150 B.C. when Chou Ya-fu, who had been grand
commandant, was promoted to Imperial Chancellor and the office of Grand
Commandant was abolished (HFHD, I.316; Hs 19B.4b) to July 140 B.C.
when Tien An was made Grand Commandant and from Nov/Dec. 140,
when Tien An was dismissed and the office of Grand Commandant was
again abolished, to 119 B.C. when a Grand Minister of War was first
appointed. Thereafter, military matters were in charge of the Grand
Minister of War. (HFHD, II.30; Hs 19A.3b.) In the latter two decades,
Emperor Wu probably directed military matters himself.
The Grandee Secretary was normally promoted to be Imperial
Chancellor but such was not always the case. Until 176 B.C. there was no
regular practice concerning what official was made Imperial Chancellor.
Between 179 and 177 B.C., two Grand Commandants were made Imperial
Chancellor. The first Grandee Secretary to be made Imperial Chancellor
was promoted in 176 BC. Between that date and 1 B.C., when the title of
Imperial Chancellor was changed to Grand Minister of Civil Administration,
there were 37 Imperial Chancellors, of whom 22 (60%) had previously
been Grandee Secretaries.
The salary of the Imperial Chancellor was ranked at ten thousand
piculs. This amount of grain was, however, only a nominal figure since
salaries were paid partly in cash and partly in grain. There were, moreover,
several ranks with nominally the same figure, but actually different
amounts of salary, such as the fully two thousand piculs, really two
thousand piculs, two thousand piculs, and equivalent to two thousand
piculs. In A.D. 51, the salary of the Minister of Works {prior to this point
known as Grand Minister of Works}, the title to which that of the Imperial
Chancellor had been changed, was fixed at 350 hu of grain per month. A
hu was 0.565 bushel or 19.96 liters. This figure is said to have been less
than that paid the Lieutenant Chancellor in Former Han times (cf. HHs Tr.
28.16b; HHs An 1B.25a). Ju Shun states that the salary of the Imperial
Chancellor was 60,000 cash per month (HFHD, II.416, n. 15.5), which sum
may have taken the place of grain. A hu was worth about 30 to 50 cash but
this amount, which would be equivalent to about 8500 bushels in modern
measure of grain per month, seems much too large.
As the leading official, the position of the Imperial Chancellor was

often dangerous. Han laws required punctilious observance of many

detailed observances and in many cases were very vague. No one could
avoid a crime and the Emperor could, if he desired, have an official
dismissed or punished at almost any time. In periods of strong central rule,
when the Emperor centralized control in his own hands, the position of the
Imperial Chancellor represented a possible source of blocking the imperial
will. Emperor Wu began the practice of periodically executing his Imperial
Chancellors in order to concentrate power in his own hands. As the
leading official, the Chancellor was also made responsible for visitations or
prodigies sent by heaven as warnings that the human order, especially the
government, was not in accord with the physical order.
The prestige of the Imperial Chancellor was manifested in many ways.
When the Imperial Chancellor was summoned to an audience and
approached the emperor seated on the throne, the latter rose to receive
him. (Hs 84.3b).
When the emperor rode in his chariot of state and the Imperial
Chancellor approached, the emperor got down from his chariot in respect
to the Imperial Chancellor (Ibid.) When the Imperial Chancellor became ill,
the emperor visited him to ask about his illness (Hs 84.11a note). The
officials were required to come once every three days to ask about his
condition. The court sent the Grand Physician to tend to him and sent
delicacies from the imperial table until he was well. When he again
resumed his duties, the Chief Master of Writing or an imperial household
grandee granted him an ox and wine on behalf of the emperor (Tpyl
204.6a-b) When an Imperial Chancellor died, his corpse was transferred to
his residence and the emperor went to condole and make presents and
bestow upon him a coffin. When the encoffining and enshrouding were
finished, the emperor granted cash to defray the funeral expenses, and a
place for burial. On the day of burial, the ministers and those of lower rank
gathered for the burial. Moreover, during his lifetime, the emperor
frequently made presents to him. It was also a regular practice that the
Imperial Chancellor be enfeoffed as a Marquis.

According to Chin regulations the left position is the higher; according to

Han custom the right is more honorable (Y-hai 120,6b note; Hspi 9.129).
We thus here translate left and right as senior and junior depending
upon in what periods these terms were used, except where they may have
actually denoted directions, as in the title of generals. Thus, the tso
cheng-hsiang () was equal to the Imperial Chancellor proper and

the yu cheng hsiang () was the vice-chancellor.


While in general the situation with regard to senior and junior Imperial
Chancellors was as the. text states, there were changes that are not here
In the reign of Emperor Kao, while Hsiao Ho was the actual
Chancellor, at times temporary honorary Imperial Chancellors were also
appointed. Han Hsin was made a Junior Imperial Chancellor. Tsao Tsan
was made an acting Junior Imperial Chancellor when he was sent to
subjugate the regions of Wei and Chi. He was later made a Senior Imperial
Chancellor and given the noble rank of Marquis. He was probably demoted
because later he was again made Senior Imperial Chancellor when he was
sent to attack Chen Hsi. Fan Kuai was also once made a Junior Imperial
Chancellor and once Chancellor of State. Since Hsiao Ho performed the
duties of the Imperial Chancellor during this whole period, these other titles
were only honorary and hence were not mentioned in the Table. They are
mentioned in the biographies of the persons referred to. In 91 B.C.
Emperor Wu, moreover, seems to have considered establishing two
Imperial Chancellors for he ordered Liu Chu-li to become Junior Imperial
Chancellor and to divide the Chief clerks and officials of the Imperial
Chancellor among two offices. The office of Senior Imperial Chancellor was,
however, left vacant while awaiting a capable person, and in the end no
one was appointed to it (cf. Hs 66.3a).

The Chief Clerks () of the Imperial Chancellor exercised a

supervisory authority over all the officials. They wore the Bonnet for
Promoting the Worthy with one projecting seam, vermillion garments, and
had a bronze seal and yellow seal-cord. (Tung tien Ch. 21. p. 121) They
assisted the Imperial Chancellor by reporting to him illegal deeds of
officials (Hs 59.6a; Hssc 4.5b-6a). When a chief clerk died, a minor clerk of
the Grandee Secretary acted as Chief Clerk of the Imperial Chancellor
until an appointment was made (Cf. Han-chiu-i, A.1b). For the most part,
subordinates of officials ranking at 2000 piculs were made chief clerks to
the Imperial Chancellor.

This change in title was made under the influence of the Confucian
principle of according with ancient practices. The title of ssu-tu is found in

the Chou-Ii, but not that of cheng-hsiang. Hence the classical title was
substituted. This change was continued in Later Han times, until in 335 A.D.
the title of the ssu-tu Wang Tao, was changed to that of cheng-hsiang and
the title of ssu-tu was abolished, by way of honoring this outstanding
official and indicating that he was as great as the cheng-hsiang of the Han
period (Chin-shu, 65.5a).

The duties of the Director of Uprightness to the Imperial Chancellor were

fundamentally the same as those of the Imperial Chancellors Chief Clerks.
This office of Director of Uprightness seems to have been established in
order to have a subordinate of the Imperial Chancellor ranking high
enough to be able to deal with high officials. The Director of Uprightness
reported and accused the highest officials in the three capital departments
and in the other departments and the kingdoms (Cf. Han-chiu-i, A.7a; Hs
72.27a). His rank was superior to that of the Colonel Director of the
Retainers (Hs 84.3a). Usually, an Inspector was promoted to this post (Cf.
Hs 77. 11b, 86.3a; 84.2a). They were promoted to be Imperial Household
Grandees or, if sent out of the imperial court, were promoted to be a
Grand Governor (cf. Hs 86.3a).
The rank of equivalent to two thousand piculs was the fourth and
lowest grade of two thousand piculs (Cf. 5, j). HHs Tr. 28, 16b states that
this rank received 100 hu of grain per month, i.e., only 1200 piculs (or hu)
per year. Hsn Cho (fl. 312) in his Notes to the Chin Tables of Officials
quoted by Li Hsien, said that in 106 A.D, this rank received 5000 cash and
34 hu of grain per month.
There were other subordinate officials to the Imperial Chancellor, not
mentioned in the Table. There were the Imperial Chancellors consultants
() who were ranked at equivalent to 600 piculs. They were
expectant appointees who awaited appointment in the yamen of the
Imperial Chancellor and were always former officials ranking at 2000 piculs
who had not been dismissed for bribery or for crime. They wore dark red
garments and attended the great imperial court at New Years (Han-chiu-i
quoted in a note to Hs 7.6b).
There were also clerks to the Imperial Chancellor () who were
ranked at 400 piculs and junior clerks () who were ranked at 300
piculs (Cf. note to Hs 7.6b). There were also clerks ranked at 200 piculs,
and at 100 piculs, superior clerks for writing shu ling shih () whose
honoraria were measured by tou (i.e., they were ranked lower than 100

piculs), and twenty writers from the palace shu tso () from whom some
were selected by examinations to be superior clerks. Those of high ability
might be given a vacancy as mounted officials chi shih (, probably an
error for ). (an-kuan ta wen A.3b). In 117 B.C. Emperor Wu
rearranged the Imperial Chancellors subordinates, establishing for him 20
clerks ranking at 400 piculs, 80 junior clerks ranking at 300 piculs, 100
subordinates ranking at 200 piculs, 162 subordinate clerks ranking at 100
piculs. (Cf. Han-chiu-i A, 6a). Of these, junior department heads tung tsao
yan () had charge of matters concerning the departments and
kingdoms and the senior department heads hsi tsao yan () had
charge of matters concerning the capital officials. There was also a
department head for memorials tsou tsao yan (), a department for
discussions yi tsao yan (), a department for collections chi tsao
yan (), a department head for bandits tsei tsao yan (),
department head for judgement cheh tsao yan (), an attendant
department head shih tsao yan ( he acted as a messenger), a
Master of Records chu pu (), attendant officers tsung shih (),
subordinates for the official chariot ta ch chu (), mounted officials
chI li (), a driving official y li () who drove the Imperial
Chancellors chariot), and writers shu tso ().

Government XIV Ba, 2

The Grand Commandant and the Grand Minister of War
The grand commandant () was a Chin official. He had a golden
seal with a purple seal-cord. He had charge of military matters.
In the second year of [the period] Chien-yan (140 BC), Emperor Wu
abolished [this office], and in the fourth year of [the period) Yan shou
(119 B.C.), he first established [the office of] grand minister of war (
),2 crowning3 it with a generals title. In the third year of [the period]
Ti-chieh (67 B.C.), Emperor Hsan established a grand minister of war
without crowning it with a generals [title], and also without a seal, seal-cord,
or official subordinates. In the first year of [the period) Sui-ho (8 B.C.),
Emperor Cheng first established a grand minister of war with a gold seal
and purple seal-cord, establishing for him official subordinates and a
salary equal to that of the imperial chancellor, [but] doing away with [the
concurrent title of] general. In the second year of [the period] Chien-ping
(5 B.C.), Emperor Ai again did away with the seal, seal-cord, and official
subordinates of the grand minister of war [but] crowned it with [the title of]
general as earlier. In the second year [of the period] Yan-shou (1 B.C.),
he again granted the grand minister of war a seal and seal-cord, and
established for him official subordinates, doing away [with the concurrent
title of] general, [but] making him rank higher than the [grand] minister of
civil administration.
He had a chief secretary who was ranked at a thousand piculs 5
Hs 19A.3b


While Pan Ku records in the present passage and in Hs 19B.5a that the
title of Grand Commandant was abolished in 139 B.C., Ying Shao dates
the abolition in 117 B.C. (note to HHc 21.4a) and Tu Yu dates it in 119 B.C.

(Tung tien 20.116a).


Both Y Shih-nan and Tu Yu regard the ssu-ma () as an officer of

ancient times (Ptsc 51.7a; Tung tien 20.116a). But it was probably from
119 B.C. on that the title was prefixed with the word grand ta ().
According to Ying Shao, the addition of the word ta to the title ssu-ma was
to avoid confusion with the ssu-ma which was a regular officer of the
middle class in the Han Army (note to HHc 24.4a).
The establishment of the title, ta-ssu-ma which was to prefix the title
chiang-chn () was to honor both Wei Ching, the Grand General (
), and Ho Ch-ping, the General of Agile Cavalry (Piao-chi chiang-chn
(), who repeatedly defeated the Hsiung-nu.
Though the ta-ssu-ma was in the beginning purely a title for the
highest military officers, it did not confine its holders activities only to
military matters as will be discussed below.

Yen Shih-ku notes that the word (literally, to cap) means to prefix and
make them as a title of one official.

The rank of the Minister of War should rank below that of the Grand
Minister of Civil Affairs (the former Imperial Chancellor). As Wang
Ming-sheng comments, this reversion of positions was due to the fact that
Emperor Ai wanted to elevate the position of Tung Hsien who then held the
title of Grand Minister of War. (Scssc 10.6b)
This account does not relate all the vicissitudes in the office of Grand
Commandant. At the beginning of the Han period this office seems to have
been an honorary one to which persons were appointed temporarily for
special purposes. In 205 B.C., Emperor Kao made Lu Wan Grand
Commandant to attack Hsiang Y; in 202, when Hsiang Y was killed and
Lu Wan was made King of Yen, the office was abolished (Hs 19B.1b). In
196 B.C., Chou Po was made Grand Commandant to attack Chen Hsi (Hs
19B.1b). Later the office was abolished for in 195, when he was sent
against Lu Wan, he had a different title, Chancellor of State (Hs 40.23a). In
189 B.C., Chou Po was again made Grand Commandant, which position
he held until 179 when he became senior Imperial Chancellor (Hs 19B.2a)
and Kuan Ying was appointed Grand Commandant. But in Jan./Feb., 177

B.C., when Kuan Ying was promoted to be Imperial Chancellor the office of
Grand Commandant was abolished and Kuan Ying took charge of both
civil and military matters. Emperor Wen, who wanted to economize, did not
re-establish a Grand Commandant when Kuan Ying died in 176 B.C. In the
third year of his reign (154 B.C.) Emperor Ching, however, re-established
the office and appointed Chou Ya-fu to fill the position. On April 7, 150
B.C., Chou Ya-fu was similarly promoted to be Imperial Chancellor and the
office of Grand Commandant was again abolished so that he also took
charge of both civil and military affairs (HFHD, I, 316; Mh II, 501). Emperor
Wu made his maternal half-uncle, Tien Fen, Grand Commandant in 140
B.C. but, when Tien Fen was dismissed in Nov./Dec. 140 B.C., the office
was abolished this time permanently. We may summarize these events by
saying that, during the first reign of the Former Han period, a Grand
Commandant was only appointed for some special campaign. Thereafter,
when military matters were important, a Grand Commandant was
appointed to have charge of them. Emperors Wen and Ching at first
appointed such officials but when military matters became unimportant
they combined military and civil duties in the hands of the Imperial
Chancellor, promoting the former Grand Commandant to be Imperial
Chancellor. Emperor Wu likewise at first appointed a Grand Commandant
but had to dismiss his appointee when he became involved in an intrigue
against the Grand Empress Dowager. As a consequence, he abolished
the office probably because he saw no need for it. When later, Emperor
Wu was led to engage in his elaborate military expeditions, the Emperor
himself controlled military affairs. After Wus greatest military victories
against the Hsiung-nu had been won in 119 B.C., he promoted his
outstanding generals Wei Ching and Ho Ch-ping, who were his wifes
half-brother and the latters half-brother respectively, both to the position
of Grand Ministers of War making the once concurrently Grand General
and the other concurrently General of Agile Cavalry (piao-chi
chiang-chun). (Hs 19B.6b) In all probability, however, these titles of Grand
Minister of War were merely honorary for when Ho Ch-ping died in 117
B.C. and Wei Ching died in 106, no other Grand Minister of War was
appointed in their place in spite of the fact that wars continued. Emperor
Wu considered himself quite capable of conducting military matters without
The situation was different when, on March 25, 87 B.C., just two days
before he died, Emperor Wu appointed his heir-apparent who was then a
minor. The Emperor wanted Ho Kuang to control the government but could
not appoint him regent, for a regent must be a close imperial relative. Ho

Kuang, therefore, was made Grand Minister of War on the same day that
the heir-apparent was appointed (Hs 19B.9b). The function of the Grand
Minister of War was thus changed. Thereafter, until the end of the Former
Han dynasty, he dominated the government.
At the beginning of the Later Han period, the title of Grand Minister of
War was continued. In A.D. 51, Emperor Kuang-wu changed the title back
to that of Grand Commandant and gave this official effective charge of the
army (HHs tr. 24.3a-4a).
The explanation for the changes in the appurtenances of the Grand
Minister of War are to be found in the political circumstances of the times.
In 76 B.C., Emperor Hsan was confronted by the necessity of destroying
the all-powerful Ho clan. He lulled their suspicions in September by making
Ho Y the Grand Minister of War concurrently with Chang An-shih and
then in Nov/Dec. deprived both ministers of control of their troops. Later
the Ho clan was exterminated. (Cf. HFHD, II.184-187; Hspc 19B.32b;
HFHD, II.222). Thereafter the post of Grand Minister of War was continued
but, since the occupants of this post were the maternal relatives of the
emperor who controlled the whole government by virtue of possessing the
emperors confidence and controlling the emperors sources of information
by occupying the position of Master of Writing, these persons were not
specially interested in military affairs and needed no direct control over the
In 8 B.C., the Confucian Grandee Secretary, Ho Wu. recommended
that the government should be reformed in accordance with ancient
practices, in this case, those in the Chou-li. In ancient times, the duties that
were given in his day to the Imperial Chancellor had been divided among
three officials, and, because it was no longer possible to secure sage
officials as in the ancient classical times, he said that the ancient practices
should be followed in order to lighten the duties of the Imperial Chancellor
(Hs 83;15b). The title of the Grandee Secretary, held by Ho Wu, was
accordingly changed to Grand Minister of Works, and the Grand Minister
of War, who was Wang Ken, an uncle of the Emperor, was given effective
power over the army by the change indicated in the text. (The title of the
Imperial Chancellor, however, was not changed until 1B.C.) This change
was, however, merely nominal for Wang Ken continued to dominate the
government as before.
Emperor Ai was not a whole-hearted Confucian like his elder cousin,
Emperor Cheng, and the Confucian Wang Mang, who was Grand Minister
of Works when the new emperor came to the throne in 7 B.C. found it

advisable to retire. Emperor Ai then appointed as his ministers persons

who had had experience in the bureaucracy and dismissed the learned
Confucians whom Emperor Cheng had put in office. In 5 B.C., Chu Po,
then the Grand Minister of Works, accordingly recommended that the
former titles for the highest ministers be restored, on the grounds that it
was not necessary to imitate ancient practices and that the government
should adapt itself to the needs of the age. The Han dynasty had been
ruled for two centuries so that its original institutions had been proved
successful by experience (Hs 83.16a-b). Emperor Ai accordingly reversed
Emperor Chengs change. Emperor Ai could not get along with his
ministers and dismissed them one after another, except for his compliant
catamite, Tung Hsien. When an astonishing portent, a solar eclipse on
New Years day, was followed within a month by the death of the emperors
dominating grandmother, the superstitious emperor recalled the
Confucians to office. Another solar eclipse a year later, led Emperor Ai in 1
B.C. to reverse himself and restore the ancient Confucian titles for the
three highest ministers. At this time the title of the Imperial Chancellor was
changed to Grand Minister of Civil Administration. Emperor Ai now
institutionalized the circumstance that the Grand Minister of War actually
directed the government, by ranking him higher than the Grand Minister of
Civil Administration. In this case, however, the change was motivated
largely by the fact that the Emperors favorite, Tung Hsien, was Grand
Minister of War, and that the Emperor wanted this man to control the
government. Tung Hsien was utterly incompetent to do anything except
please the emperor, so that this change in title and rank achieved nothing.
As soon as Emperor Ai died, Tung Hsien committed suicide and Wang
Mang took his place.

According to HHc, the Chief Secretary () of the Grand Minister of

War was in charge of all subordinate departments in the office of the
Grand Minister of War. (HHc 24.4b)

Government XIV Ba, 3

The Grandee Secretary
The Grandee Secretary () was a Chin office, and was
ranked in the highest rank of high ministers. [Its occupant] had a silver
seal with a cerulean seal-cord. His duty was to assist the Imperial
He had two assistants, who were ranked at a thousand piculs. One
was called the palace assistant [secretary] ([])3 who was in the
Orchid Tower ()4 inside [the imperial palace hall enclosure]. He had
charge of the [imperial] charts and registers and the [imperial] private
library. Outside [the palace the Grandee Secretary] supervised the
inspectors of regional divisons. ()5 Within [the palace] he directed
the fifteen attendant secretaries ().6 He received memorials and
[matters of government] business from the ministers () and made
recommendations [for promotions] and impeachments in accordance with
the laws.
In the first year of [the period] Sui-ho (8 B.C.), Emperor Cheng
changed the title [of the Grandee Secretary to that of] the Grand Minister
of Works (), [giving him a golden seal with a purple seal-cord], with
a salary equal to that of the Imperial Chancellor, and established [for him]
a chief clerk () whose office and duties were like those of the former
palace assistant [secretary]. In the second year of [the period] Chien-ping
(5 B.C.), Emperor Ai again [made this official] the Grandee Secretary, and
in the second year of [the period] Yan-shou (1 B.C.), this official was
again made the Grand Minister of Works and the palace assistant
secretary was changed to be called the chief clerk of the [Grandee]
Secretary ().
Some of the attendant secretaries [were on occasion made) special
commissioners wearing embroidered garments (), and were sent
out to punish wicked and troublesome persons and to have charge of
important law-cases.9 [This latter office] was instituted by Emperor Wu and
[such officials) were not regularly appointed.

Hs 19A.3b-4a


The rank of the shang-ching () has a long and complicated early

history. An archaic form of the character ching seems to have been
already used in the Shang inscriptions (second half of the second
millennium B.C.; YHWTLP 9.3a; CKWP 9.3a). The bearer of this title
apparently had a relatively high position under the Shang dynasty. It
certainly was very high during the Chou period. The Chou bronzes
mention the ching as a very high dignitary (cf. CWTKS 6b-7a; Wu CC
The literary records referring to the Spring and Autumn period
denote the ching as a small group of leading statesmen who dealt with
military matters as well as with civil affairs of their country. There was a
ching proper, the cheng-ching (), who is also called shang-ching (
), the greater ching. The assistant or vice-ching had several titles one
of which was hsia-ching (), the inferior ching. (Cf. Kung Yang 19.1lb;
Tso 43.5a ff.; CCI, V2, 511). This word has generally been translated as
minister. Under the Chin dynasty the term ching more or less vanished,
perhaps because the clearer differentiation of civil and military functions
and the removal of the feudal basis of the officialdom made a new
nomenclature desirable or it may have been merely a matter of national
custom. While the term () still occurs occasionally, as it does here in
our text, it is obviously used to indicate a high rank and not an office (Cf.
CL 7.5b).
The Han dynasty adopted the classical custom of ranking its
ministers as the three highest ministers () and the nine high ministers
(). In this classification, the Grandee Secretary was definitely one of
the three highest ministers. His ranking among the highest ministers ()
was then a Chin and not a Han practice. (Wang Hsien-chien in Hspc
On the basis of his examination of Shih-chi () and Chien

Han-shu (), Japanese scholar It Tokuo () gives a quite

different interpretation of san-kung () and chiu-ching () as they
were used during the Former Han Dynasty. According to his interpretation
san-kung as the three highest ministers in central government did not exist
prior to 8 B.C. But, it came into existence only after 8 B.C. when offices of
ta-ssu-ma () and ta-ssu-kung () along with cheng-hsiang (
) were established by Ho Wus proposal. Furthermore, he thinks
that chiu-ching was used to indicate the official seating arrangement of the
high ranking officials at the court meeting. (Vide: Ito Tokuo , Zen
Kan no ky kei ni tsuite Tohogaku Ronsh
, Vol. I, pp. 115-119. and Zen Kan no san k ni tsuite
, Rekishi Vol. VIII.)
We shall translate the words kung and ching, for Han times, as
indicated above and shall translate the phrase kung-ching, which
indicates both groups, by ministers.

Chinese historians find the origin of the y-shih ta-fu in ancient times. It is
recorded that formerly his duty was to make drafts of and issue decrees
(Ptsc 52.5b; Tung tien 24.141a; Hssc 4.10a). It is also reported that during
the Chan-kuo period he functioned like a scribe. In later periods the
y-shih ta-fu were censors but in Han times, the y-shih ta-fu had,
however, quite different functions and the function of censoring was
performed by the grandee-remonstrants () (cf. XIV B. vii, n.
2).{Citation uncertain.} The Grandee Secretary seems to have been
ranked as the highest of the high ministers in Chin times; in Han times he
was definitely one of the three highest ministers (), along with the
Imperial Chancellor and Grand Minister of War. (Wang Hsien-chien in a
note to Hspc 19A.5a) His powers were substantially the same as those of
the Imperial Chancellor, although his rank and influence was not so high
(Hs 83.4b, 16a). It was the Chin and Han policy, in important
administrative positions, to arrange that one official could act as a check
upon another. The Imperial Chancellor generally discussed matters with
the Grandee Secretary and they presented a joint memorial to the
emperor. If they disagreed, the emperor decided (Hs 71.7a; 59.3b). The
Grandee Secretary sent one of his subordinates to investigate courtiers or
others who might have committed crimes (Hs 49.5a). The Imperial
Chancellor and Grandee Secretary together sent their clerks to put down
bandits in the provinces (Hs 83.6b) or to interfere in the administration of a

department or kingdom (Hs 84.2b). Memorials from the ministers or the

departments or kingdoms were sent to the office of the Grandee Secretary
for transmission to the throne (Tu-tuan A.4b; HFHD, II.70), and imperial
mandates were sent to the Grandee Secretary for transmission to the
Imperial Chancellor (HFHD, I.131). The reason seems to have been that
the yamen of the Grandee Secretary was inside the inner forbidden
imperial apartments of the palace (Han-chiu-i A.8a), whereas that of the
Imperial Chancellor was outside the inner apartments though still in the
palace enclosure. When the officials who brought the yearly accounts from
the departments and kingdoms reached the capital, the Grandee
Secretary interviewed them outside the majors gates (which were the
outer gates of the palace enclosure) and admonished them similarly to the
way the Imperial Chancellor did (Han-chiu-i A.10b). The Grandee
Secretary was usually one of those called upon by the emperor to make
recommendations for appointments and was the official who frequently
gave those recommended the examination. The Han-chiu-i thus states In
the first year of Emperor Wus [reign] he ordered each department and
kingdom to recommend one person who was filially pious and incorrupt.
They were to go to the [Grandee] Secretary who was to give them an
examination and install them as gentlemen-of-the palace. Hs 83.6a
records that the Grandee Secretary was the supervisor of the entire
bureaucracy and for that reason many scholars have translated the title as
Grand Censor. The salary of the Grandee Secretary is said to have been
40,000 cash per month (HFHD, II.416, n. 15.5). When imperial sons were
enfeoffed as nobles (kings), the Grandee Secretary had charge of the
ceremony (Hs 63.6b). The Grandee Secretary was regularly promoted
from among the high ministers or former ministers. (There were only six
exceptions: Pu Shih, who had been chancellor of the kingdom of Chi,
Wang Yen-kuang and Wang Ching, who had been grand governors, Pao
Sheng-chih and Yin Chung, who had been imperial household grandees,
and Ping Chi, who had been Grand Tutor to the Heir-Apparent).

The Palace Assistant Secretary () was originally entitled the

Palace Secretary for Administering the Laws () HFHD, I.131;
196 B.C. This official received imperial mandates and sent them on to the
governors of departments (HFHD, I.131). He also had charge of memorials
from the departments. He examined and ranked the inspectors of regional
divisions (Hs 66.17b) and impeached persons who committed crimes (Cf.
Hs 83.1b-2a). At court assemblies, he brought to the attention of the

sovereign any person who failed to observe the regulations for court
etiquette and had them immediately expelled. Although he was a
subordinate of the Grandee Secretary, yet, because he was in the palace
hall, where he acted as assistant of the Grandee Secretary to receive
memorials, his power was sometimes greater than that of the Grandee
Secretary (Cf. Hs 59.4b where, when Chang Tang was Grandee
Secretary and was at odds with his palace assistant Li Wen, several
promotions were made in accordance with the recommendations of Li Wen
and Chang Tang could do nothing about them. At court assemblies, the
Palace Assistant Secretary (a quotation in HHs Mem. 5.l0a said to be of
the Hki substitutes the name of the Grandee Secretary which is unlikely)
together with the. Chief Master of Writing and the Colonel Director in
Charge of Investigation, each had special mats for sitting. They were
called The three sole sitters. (PTSC, 62.2a quoting the Han-chiu-i). This
privilege was evidently because they might be required to write documents.
Other courtiers stood out of respect for the emperor. Officials who formerly
had held positions ranking at 2000 piculs or attending secretaries of high
attainments were promoted to the post of Palace Assistant Secretary (Hs
71.6a). This official might be promoted to be the governor of a department
(Hs 83.20a). He had a bronze seal with a cerulean seal-cord (Hs 19A.16b;
Tung tien 24.124a), wore a bonnet with two projecting seams (Ptsc 62.2a),
and had attendant officers (Hs 71.6a).
The Palace Assistant Secretary was continued under the Later Han
dynasty, ranking him at a 1000 piculs and making him a subordinate of the
privy treasurer since the Grandee Secretary had been changed to be
Minister of Works. He still lived in the imperial quarters and had the duty of
reporting violations of the laws (HHs T 26.11a).

The Orchid Tower () was a tower in the imperial palace hall, where
the imperial private library was stored and the imperial records kept. The
six foremen clerks () at the Orchid Tower who were ranked at 100
piculs. had charge of preserving writings and memorials, of collating books,
fixing the correct form of characters, and of supervising the workmen who
made official seals. The HHs tr. 26.11b states that these foremen clerks
were ranked at 600 piculs which is too high a rank since foremen clerks
are elsewhere very low officials, The two statements can, however. be
reconciled by noting that Ssu-ma Piao, in the HHs Tr. is almost surely
copying Ying Shaos passage in the Hki, and that the former had dropped
out the two words placed in parentheses in the reproduction of the two

texts: ). Except for these two characters. the texts are

identical. The Japanese scholar Sakurai Yoshir thinks that the
tendency for y-shih-tai () to become an independent office under
supervision of y-shih chung-cheng () separate from yu-shih-fu
() and from the control of y-shih ta-fu () had already begun in
the early period of the Han dynasty. and that this tendency was completed
during the later years of Han Wu-tis reign. (Vide: Sakurai Yashiro
, Yushi seido no keisei Ty gakuh Vol. XXIII,
pp. 272-304).

The pu tzu shih () were introduced in the fifth year of Emperor Wu

(136 B.C.). There were altogether thirteen. Each of them took charge of a
chou () (Hs 6.24a). They were to tour the provinces to inspect the life of
the people and the operation of the bureaucracy according to the six
items enumerated in an edict (see below).

Shen Chin-han states that the shih yu shih was to write

documents, decrees and annals. (Hssc 4.12b). Tu Yu, Chi Shao-nan, and
Shen Chin-han all regard it as an office of the Chou dynasty. Originally it
was called the chu hsia shi . It was the Chin ruler who changed the
name to the present one (Tung tien 24.143a; Esws 0354b-c; Hssc 4.12b).
Tu Yu says this official had to be completely familiar with the maps, books,
statistics, history, and registers of the empire. (Tung tien 24.143a; cf. Hki,
A.23b-24a). Pan Ku was for a long time a foreman clerk .

This sentence is not in the text, but is clearly implied and is added for the
sake of completeness. The title of this official is found in Hs 49.5a; and in
53.16a. Cf. Tung tien 24.142a; Hki A.23b; Hssc 4.11a-b).

The change in the title of the Grandee Secretary was produced by the
Confucian endeavor to imitate ancient practices and by the influence of
their opponents. The Later Han dynasty kept the Confucian titles. (See the
account of Later Han practices for the Grand Minister of Works and his

These special commissioners were appointed to deal with critical

situations, and had the power to apply military law in pursuit of their
mission. They wore special garments and carried axes as a symbol of their
power. Emperor Wu first appointed them in 99 B.C., on the occasion of
widespread disorder, banditry, and possible rebellion. (Cf. HFHD, II.106
and nn. 34.4, 34. 5). To execute an official ranking at 2000 piculs (e. g.
governors), they had to secure the imperial consent, but they had the
power summarily to execute officials ranking at 1000 piculs and lower.
They were also to recommend to the court persons of unusual ability.

Government XIV Ba, 4

The Three Ministers Ranking Higher than the Highest Ministers
a. the grand tutorship
b. the grand preceptor
c. the grand guardian
The Grand Tutor () was an ancient office. It was first established
[in the Han dynasty] in the first year (187 B.C.) [of the reign of] the
Empress [Dowager ne L of Emperor] Kao. [Its occupant] had a golden
seal with a purple seal-cord. Later [this office] was abolished. In the eighth
year (180 B.C.) [of that reign] it was re-established, and later done away
with. In [the reign of] Emperor Ai, in the second year of [the period]
Yan-shou (1 B.C.), it was re-established. Its rank was above that of the
three highest ministers ().
The Grand Preceptor () and the Grand Guardian () were
both ancient offices. In [the reign of] Emperor Ping, in the first year of the
[period] Yan-shih (1 A.D.), both of them were first established [in the Han
period]. [Their occupants] had golden seals and purple seal-cords. The
rank of Grand Preceptor was superior to that of Grand Tutor and the
Grand Guardian [ranked] next to the Grand Tutor.1
Hs 19A.4a-b


The three ministers ranking higher than the highest ministers () were
originally called the three highest ministers (). These were in Han
times purely honorary positions to which ministers could be promoted in
order to remove them from office and hence power. Such was the use of
these offices by Empress Dowager ne L. These titles were ancient,
being mentioned in the Book of History, V, xx, 5 (Legge, 527), where they
are called the three highest ministers (). Wang Mang, in his

endeavor to follow classical practices made them regular offices, but the
Later Han dynasty retained only that of Grand Tutor. These offices were
later called the three masters () which appellation was not used in
Han times, but dates from the Later Wei period. It has, however, come ever
since to designate these three offices.
The salary of each of these three honorary officials was 350 hu of
grain per month (Hki quoted in Tlt 1.2b).
The duties of the Grand Tutor were to be the teacher and advisor of
the prince in all matters, moral, administrative, ritual. The Ta-tai Li-chi
contains an account of this honorary officials duties, in a passage from the
school of Chia I, the famous advisor of Emperor Kao (Trans. in R. Wilhelm,
LiGi, 217). A spirited account of these honorary advisors of the throne is
quoted by Ying Shao from Chia I in a note to HHs Tr. 24.2b. Here it says of
this official, He had charge of leading [the prince] in virtue. [This position]
was not constantly filled.
The Grand Preceptor was the tutor of the Son of Heaven, while the
Grand Guardian was to safeguard him and admonish him against evils
(Ptsc 52.8b-llb; cf. also Chia Is statement in the note to HHs 24.2b).

Government XIV Ba, 5

The Generals
The generals of the van, of the rear, of the left, and of the right (
) were all offices [originating] towards the end of the Chou [period.
The state of] Chin continued them. Their rank was higher than the high
ministers and they had a golden seal with a purple seal-cord.
The Han [dynasty] did not constantly fill [these offices]. Sometimes
there were [generals] of the van and of the rear and sometimes there were
[generals] of the right and left. They all had charge of troops and also
[ sometimes] of barbarian [auxiliaries].1
They had chief clerks () who ranked at a thousand piculs.
Hs 19A.4b
NOTE: this is included in the section on the Army (XV, 1 [6]). {Presumably
this was to be another section of Volume 4.}


In Chou times the army in battle was sometimes divided into two or three
chun and its leader was accordingly called the chiang-chn (), which
term is translated as general.
In addition to the titles mentioned in the text there were others:
General of chariots and cavalry (), which seems to have been a
high military position at the court rather than in the field (Hs 19B.2b ff);
general of the guard (), which was a position temporarily created by
Emperor Wen in 180 B.C. to command both the large Northern Army and
the Southern Army at the capital (Hs 4.4a; 19B.2b). There were also such
bureaucrats as the Commanders of the Gentlemen-of-the-Palace ()
and the General-of-the-Palace () for all the offices. In addition

certain individual generals were given particular titles appropriate to their

character or campaign, which titles were occasionally also bestowed upon
later generals as honors. Such were the titles: the General of Flash
Cavalry () bestowed upon Li Kuang, and later borne by Ho
Ch-ping (), Shang-kuan An (), Wang Ken (), Wang
Shun () and Wang Lin (); Erh- shih General () bestowed
upon Li Kuang-li, () only (Erh-shih was the Chinese name for the
capital of Ferghana); General of the South of the [ Yellow] River ()
bestowed upon Hsan Hu () (Hs 16.10a); General of Towered
Warships () bestowed upon Yang Pu () (Hs 17. 5b); the
General Who Crosses the Liao River (), bestowed upon Fan
Ming-yu () (Hs 59); the Scouting and Attacking General (),
bestowed upon Han Yeh () and Su Chien () (Hs 5.3b); General
of Mt. Chn-chi ()bestowed upon Chao Po-nu (); General
of Strong Crossbow (), bestowed upon Li Ch () (Hs 55.3b);
General of Cavalry (),. bestowed upon Kung-sun Ho () (Hs
55.); etc. Generals were appointed for special campaigns. For the settled
military organization of the Han government, cf. sub. The Commandant of
the Guard, the Commandant of the Capital.

Government XIV Ba, 6

The Grand Minister of Ceremonials and the Erudits
The Ministership of Imperial Ancestral Ceremonies () was a Chin
office. He had charge of the [imperial] ancestral temples and of the rites
[for the imperial worship].1 He had an Assistant (.)2 Emperor Ching, in
the sixth year (144 B.C.) of the middle [part of his reign], changed this title
to be grand minister of ceremonies ()
Among his subordinates there were [the offices] of the grand
musician (),4 the grand supplicator ()5 the grand slaughterer (
),6 the grand astrologer (), the grand augur ()8, and the grand
physician (),9 with their six prefects () and [six] assistants (). [For
the funerary counties under this ministers control]10 there were also the
office for equalization () and the supervision waters () with
their two chiefs and [two] assistants. There were also the prefects or chiefs
and assistants at the various [imperial ancestral] temples (), funerary
chambers (),14 funerary parks (),15 and offices for offerings ().16
There also were the prefects and assistants at [the offices of] the grand
slaughterer and grand supplicator at Yung ().l7 At each of the five sacred
places there was a commandant (). Moreover, the erudit and the
counties [established for] the various [imperial] tombs were all subordinate
[to the grand minister of ceremonies]
In the sixth year (144 B.C.) of the middle [part of his reign], Emperor
Ching changed the title of the grand supplicator to be the Invocator ().
In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.), Emperor Wu changed it
to be the Ancestral Temple Supplicator () and for the first time there
was established a grand augur.
The Erudits

The erudits () were Ch'in officials. They had charge of being

conversant with ancient and present [matters]. They were ranked as
equivalent to 600 piculs. Their number was as many as several tens, [but]
in the fifth year [of the period] Chien-yan (136 B.C.), Emperor Wu for the

first time established [only five] erudits for the five Classics.
In the first year of [the period] Huang-lung (49 B.C.), Emperor Hsan
increased their number to twelve.20
In the first year of [the period] Yan-kuang (43 B.C.), Emperor Yan
distributed the various funerary counties and county-seats to be
subordinate to the Three Supporting Districts.21
Wang Mang changed [the title of] the grand minister of ceremonies
to be the Arranger of the Ancestral Temples ().22
Hs 19A.4b-.5a


The Grand Minister of Ceremonies () originally entitled the Minister

of Imperial Ancestral Ceremonies (, there seems to have been little if
any difference between the duties of these two officials) was the highest of
the nine high ministers (), which rank was next below that of the three
highest ministers. This ministry had charge of the state religious
ceremonies, especially the worship of Heaven, Earth, the gods of the soils
and grains, and the imperial ancestors. (Hkck, quoted in Tpyl, 228.7a). At
such ceremonies, the priest (chief worshipper) was the emperor, in person
or by a deputy. The Grand Minister of Ceremonies had charge of
arranging the ritual and of introducing the Son of Heaven to the divinities
(HHs Tr., 25.1a). He also had charge of the imperial tombs and temples,
and, until 43 B.C., administered the counties established at these towns.
Whenever there was an examination for the selection of erudit, he
memorialized on the capability of the candidates. When the departments
or kingdoms recommended persons as capable and good or literary
scholars and they reached the capital, they were sent to the Grand
Minister of Ceremonies where they were given written examinations. The
papers were graded by the Grand Minister of Ceremonies who ranked
them in order and memorialized their names. The emperor sometimes,
however, altered that order. At the end of their year of study, he had them
examined and reported to the throne the names of those who passed the
examination (Hs 88.5a). The Grand Minister of Ceremonies was ranked at
fully two thousand piculs (HHs Tr. 25.1a) which means that he was paid a

monthly salary of 180 hu of grain. He had a silver seal with a cerulean

seal-cord. The seal had a tortoise knob and it was called a chang () a
subjects seal. Hktw 2.1a). In Han times, a marquis who was loyal, filially
pious, respectful, and careful was selected for this post (Hki, quoted in
HHs tr. 25.1a). At sacrifice, he wore the level mortar-board bonnet with
seven tassels, black above and bright scarlet below, adorned with pictures
of the seven kinds of insects. Han-chiu-i, quoted in Tpyl 228.7a, section on
offices). He rode a four-horse chariot. He had one master of records (),
who preceded him with eight chariots and was accompanied by 500-odd
horsemen (Hki 14b.11b) {sic!}. In this office there were 85 subordinate
officials, twelve of whom were distributed among each of four divisions.
Fifteen were aides (), five were acting aides (). Thirteen were
ranked at 100 piculs, fifteen were horsemen, nine were students of matters,
and sixteen were acting students of matters (Hk, quoted by Li Hsien in a
note to HHs Tr. 25.1a).

The Assistant Grand Minister of Ceremonies ranked at equivalent to

1000 piculs (HHs Tr. 25.1b). Tu Yu, in Tung tien, ch. 25, p. 142, states
that this office was inherited by the Han dynasty from Chin times, and that
there was only one assistant Grand Minister of Ceremonies. He had a
bronze seal and black seal-cord. He had charge of religious ceremonies
and sacrifices. Matters of lesser importance were in charge of the
department heads at the various offices () HHs Tr. 25.1b). The
Assistant had charge of offerings at the various imperial ancestral temples
and of the various imperial tombs and the counties supporting those tombs
(Hs 73.4b). Thus the Assistant seems to have been the bureaucrat
actually performing the duties of this religious office, while the minister
determined policies and suffered from the penalties of this difficult posta
practice familiar in occidental ministries today.
In Han times former erudits or gentlemen-consultants were for the
most part appointed to this post (Tung tien ch. 25, p. 147). He wore the
bonnet for promoting the worthy, with two projecting seams. According to
HHs Tr. 30.7a-b, the bonnet for promoting the worthy () was an
ancient bonnet of raisin-colored linen cloth. It was worn by the literary
Confucians. In front it was 7 inches tall and in back 3 inches. It was 8
inches long. Dukes and Marquises had three projecting seams on the front.
Those ranking at fully two thousand piculs and under, down to the erudit,
had two projecting seams; from the erudit down to minor clerks, and the

disciples of private schools, all had one projecting seam.

The number of departmental head clerks subordinate to this
assistant was not fixed, but depended upon the circumstances. In this
respect, the other ministries were similar (HHs Tr. 25.1b).

The account does not relate all the changes in this title. The Tang
Liu-tien () by Li Lin-fu and others, compiled during 713-755, Ch.
14.7b says [Emperor] Kao of the Han [dynasty] named him the grand
minister of ceremonies and Emperor Hui restored [the title] to minister of
imperial ancestral ceremonies. Emperor Ching again called him the grand
minister of ceremonies. The Han-kuan tien-chih i-shih hsan-yung
, p. lb, by Tsai Chih , fl. 133, also contains this statement
about Emperor Huis change. We can find nothing about the reasons for
the changes in this title.

The office of Grand Musician had charge of the music at state sacrifices,
including the postured dancing at those sacrifices (HHs Tr. 25.2b-3a), for
which children of bureaucrats or minor nobles were selected. (Lu Chihs [d.
192] Li-chi chu , quoted by Li Hsien in a note to HHs Tr. 25.3b).
There was one prefect and one assistant in the office of the grand
musician. This office had charge of skilled musicians. Whenever there
were state sacrifices, this office had charge of performing the music. This
official asked the Grand Minister of Ceremonies what selections were to be
performed. When there was to be an important sacrifice to the dead, this
official had charge of arrangements (HHs Tr. 25.2b, 3a). This office had
25 regular officials, of whom two were ranked at a hundred piculs and one
was an official whose salary was measured by tou (tou-shih ).(HHs Tr.
28.17a, states that an official whose salary was measured by tou received
11 hu of grain per month), seven aides (), ten students (), and four
acting students. There were also 380 musicians and ceremonial dancers
(). According to the code, the children of families of low social rank
were not permitted to dance in the ancestral temple at the offering of the
seventh month wine. For these dancers, children by the first wife of
officials ranking from 2000 piculs to 600 piculs, together with children of
those nobles who were Kuan-nei marquises or lower down to fifth rank
grandees () were selected. They had to be 5 feet or more in height,
to be in their twelfth to their 30th year of age, and in good health. (Lu

Chihs [d. 192] Li-chi chu , quoted by Li Hsien in a note to HHs Tr.
25. 3b).
In 60 A.D. the title of this office was changed to be the office of the
Great Revealed Music (; HHs A 2.11a). The meaning of this title is
nowhere explained, except in a difficult quotation by Li Hsien [in a note to
Ibid.] of the Shang-shu Hsan-chi Chien , [a very obscure book,
not listed in any of the bibliographies, but quoted in the notes to the
Wen-hsan and in the Tpyl; Li implies it was extant in A.D. 60. Its title is
similar to that of many which appeared in the time of Wang Mang.] There
was a Lord who produced the Han [dynasty]. His virtue was bestowed
[upon that dynasty] and he composed music [for the dynasty]. Its name
was yu [possibly meaning revealed]. Then the change in the title was
for mystical reasons, to emphasize the possession by the Han dynasty of
Heavens mandate. In addition to the grand musician, whose duties were
altogether religious, there was another bureau of music (yeh-fu)
subordinate to the privy treasurer which performed secular music. For the
grand musician, see Hs 21.9b; 22.26a, 29b; 19B.7b,16.19a.

The Grand Supplicator was ranked at 600 piculs (HHs Tr. 25.2b). At the
state sacrifices he had charge of reading the prayers, together with
receiving and dismissing the gods (Ibid). At such sacrifices he had charge
of the mats for the divinities and the wine for offerings (Han-chiu-i, quoted
in a note to Ibid) .
Hs 25A.14b states that in 205 B.C. Emperor Kao summoned the
sacrificial officials of the Chin dynasty and re-established a Grand
Supplicator and Grand Butcher to maintain the ceremonies used in Chin
times. In 144 B.C., and 104 B.C., the title was again changed, as
mentioned in the last paragraph of the text.
The Chin court also had a secret invocator () whose function it
was to transfer any sins of the emperor to his inferiors. Whenever there
was any visitation or portent, this official immediately prayed and sacrificed
in order to effect such a transfer. This office was abolished by Emperor
Wen in 167 B.C. because the emperor strongly disapproved of such a
practice (Cf. HFHD, I.255 and n. 1; Hspc, 25A.14b, 15b).
Concerning the qualifications of this official, we have only a
statement in the TkHc, ch. 21. pp. 203, Yin Meng [not mentioned in the Hs
or HHs probably a relative of the Empress Dowager ne Yin of Emperor

Kuang-wu] loved learning and was benign and good. Because he was
praised among the literati he was promoted to be prefect of the office of
the Grand Supplicator.
The Grand Supplicator had one assistant whose duty it was to
supplicate minor gods (HHs Tr. 25.2b). In this office there were 41 regular
officials, of whom two were ranked at 100 piculs, 2 were ranked as officials
whose salary was counted by tou, 22 were aides, 2 were students, 4 were
acting students, nine were petty officials () and 150 were supplicators
(). There were 242 butchers () and 60 slaughterers (Li Hsien
quoting one of the works on the Han bureaucracy.) or the Grand
Supplicator cf. Hs 68.10b sub Ho Kuang Hspc 68.4b; HHs Tr. 4.5b, 6.6a.

The Grand Butcher ranked at 600 piculs (HHs Tr. 25.2b). He had charge
of the workmen who did the butchering of-victims for the sacrifices, also of
the tripod kettles, the small tables on which to offer flesh, and the articles
for offerings. Whenever there was a state sacrifice, he had charge of
arranging the offerings and vessels. (Ibid.) This office was inherited from
the Chin period. He had one assistant grand butcher (). There were
42 regularly appointed officials of whom two were ranked at 100 piculs, two
were officials whose salary was measured by ton, 23 were aides, nine were
petty officials, two were students and four were acting students. There
were also 242 butchers (), 73 slaughterers (), and 15 guards ().
(For this office, cf. HHs Tr. 5.7a).

The Grand Astrologer ( the title is literally the grand clerk), ranked
at 600 piculs, had charge of astrology, astronomy, the calendar, the
weather, and such special ceremonial buildings as the Ming-tang and the
Spiritual Tower (HHs Tr. 25.1b). Towards the end of each year, he
memorialized to the throne the calendar for the next year. For state
sacrifices, funerals, and marriages, he selected a lucky day and
determined what taboos were proper. He recorded portentous events. He
used the divining board () and divined by the stalks and the Book of
Changes (Lis note to HHs 25.1b). In Later Han times, he also divined by
the tortoise-shell (Cf. Chen Chings note to Clcs 26.9a). The Spiritual
Tower served as an observatory (HHs T. 8.7a-8a).
He was also in charge of mathematics (Hs 21A.2b). being a clerk,
he examined persons who were recommended by the departments as able

to write. Students who were in their seventeenth year or over were first
examined to see whether they could recite the nine thousand characters in
Shih Chous book; if so, they could become clerks. They were also tested
in the eight styles of writing. The departments sent them to the Grand
Astrologer who listed them in order of excellence. They were then made
clerks to the Masters of Writing. But if they wrote a character incorrectly,
they were immediately reported and dealt with (Cf. SWCT 15A.2b; HFHD,
II.339; Hspc 21A.3a. ). Ssu-ma Chien and his father both occupied this
It has been a moot point whether the Grand Astrologer was or was
not at first called Lord Grand Astrologer (). The fact is that the
most famous Grand Astrologer, Ssu-ma Chien, speaks of his father,
Ssu-ma Tan, and of himself as the Lord Grand Astrologer. A note to Wei
Hungs Han-kuan-i is moreover quoted by Ju Shun as saying The [office]
Lord Grand Astrologer was established by Emperor Wu. Its rank was
superior to that of the Imperial Chancellor. The accounts of the
[departments and kingdoms] in the empire were first presented to the Lord
Grand Astrologer, and a duplicate was presented to the Imperial
Chancellor. [This official] directed affairs as in the ancient Spring and
Autumn [times]. After [Ssu-ma] Chien had died, Emperor Hsan merely
made his office into that of a prefect [grand astrologer] who should carry
on the [former] writing of the Lord Grand Astrologer. Against this
statement is the declaration by Chin Shao that Many of Wei Hungs
sayings are not true, and the fact that in his letter to Jen An, Ssu-ma
Chien says that his fathers position was close to that of a diviner or
supplicator, hence Emperor [ Wu] made fun with it, because it was as
unimportant as that of a common singer or actor. (Hs 62.18b; Mh I.cciii) If
the Lord Grand Astrologer had been ranked higher than the Imperial
Chancellor, Ssu-ma Chien would hardly have written this. Wang
Hsien-chien sums up a long discussion by stating that Ssu-ma Tan and
son Ssu-ma Chien were merely honored by being called lord () which
was a polite appellation, and that Wei Hung is mistaken (cf. Hspc 62. 3b,
There was one Assistant Grand Astrologer() and one
Assistant for the Ming-tang () and the Spiritual Tower (). These
were ceremonial buildings made much of by Confucians. The second
assistant seems to have been added by the Later Han dynasty. They were
ranked at 200 piculs (HHs Tr. 25.1b; Ptsc 55.3a however quotes the
Han-chiu-i stating that they were ranked at 300 piculs). The second

assistant had charge of the Ming-tang and the Spiritual Tower. At the
latter, there were 42 expectant appointees of whom 14 waited upon the
stars, two waited upon the sun , 3 waited upon the winds , 12
waited upon the weather , 2 waited upon the sundial , 7 waited
upon the musical tubes , and 1 was a member of the suite .
(HHs Tr. 25.2a). Thus the Spiritual Tower served as an observatory. (cf.
also HHs Tr. 8.7a-8a; for the Ming-tang cf. HHs Tr. 8.6a, 8a).
In the office of the Grand Astrologer there were 37 expectant
appointees () of whom 6 worked on the calendar, 3 divined by the
tortoise shell, 13 took care of antechambers and residences, 4 took care
of the sun and seasons, 3 took charge of apotropaic matters, 9 were of the
Chi clan (, the clan in the state of Chin that had charge of the statutes
and records so that this peculiar designation of an official may indicate a
similar function), of Masters Hs () interpretation of the I-li (cf. Hspc
88.21a which speaks of a and of the Tien-chang clan (),
three of each set. There were two each who had charge of happy
ceremonies, of petitioning for rain, and of neutralizing evil influences, and
two physicians. For further information on the Grand Astrologer cf. Hs
30.1b; 97B.8a; Hspc 99C.16b, 23b; HHs M.49.2a-b sub. Chang Heng;
M.72B.5b; Tr. 2.5a-b, 10a, 12a, 16b, 17a, 21a-b, 24a, 25a-b, HHsc 4b, 7b,
8b, 10b, 13b, 16a; M.24.23a sub Liang Chi; M.38.7a sub Chai Pu. For the
Assistant Grand Astrologer, cf. HHs T. 1.22a. For the assistant for the
Ming-tang, cf. HHs A.1b, 30a, A.4.9a (HHscc 6a) A.2.5b (HHsc 4a). For
the assistant for the Spiritual Terrace, cf. HHs A.1B.30a (HHsc 22a);
A.2.6a (HHsc 4b), 7a (HHsc 5a), 10a (HHsc 7a). For the Grand
Astrologers member of his suite, cf. HHs T. 2.24b (HHsc 18b), 25a (HHsc
19a). There was also a gentleman-of-the-palace (lang-chung) subordinate
to the Grand Astrologer, who had charge of preparing the calendar; cf.
HHs T. 2.20a (HHsc 15a).

The Prefect in the office of the Grand Augur was ranked at 600 piculs;
HHs T. 25.4a). Whenever there was any important state business, he had
to divine about it by cracks made by fire on a tortoise-shell, which
operation was called pu (), and to offer to the throne his augury (Hktw
2.2b). Skk 128.3.4, recounts that Emperor Kao continued the office of the
Grand Augur as it had been in Chin times, and that his successors did not
give any examinations for this office but continued in office the
descendants of the original Grand Augur, although there were gaps in the

direct succession. By the time of Emperor Wu, there was a great collection
of auguries to be used as precedents for further auguries. This emperor
had auguries made, both by the tortoise-shell and by the stalks, for his
expeditions against the Hsiung-nu, against Ta-Yan (Ferghana), and
against Fukien and Canton. His gifts to the Grand Augur amounted to
many thousands and ten thousands of cash. Sc 128 contains a long
account recounting the methods of prognosticating by the milfoil and the
While the Later Han dynasty at first had an office of the Grand Augur,
as in the Former Han dynasty, this office was done away with soon after
A.D. 25 and its duties were given to the Grand Astrologer (HHs T. 25, 4a).
In addition to the Assistant Grand Augur, there was a Grand Augurs Erudit
(). Tlt 14.21b states that Emperor Wu first established this official.

The prefect in the office of the Grand Physician, in Later Han times, was
ranked at 600 piculs (HHs T. 26.4a). Li Hsien, quoting Ying Shaos Hki,
however, stated that he was ranked at 1000 piculs and that his assistant
was ranked at 300 piculs. This office had existed under the Chou and Chin
dynasties. Its occupant wore a bonnet with two projecting seams. He had
charge of medical work and medicines. In Later Han dynasty this office was
transferred to be subordinate to the Privy Treasurer. In Former Han times,
there was only one Assistant Grand Physician, but in Later Han times there
was an Assistant for Medicine () who had charge of medicine, and an
Assistant for Recipes () who had charge of medicinal recipes (HHs T.
26.4a). There was an Attendant Physician () who treated the emperor
and who might be sent by the emperor to treat important courtiers (Hs
30.1b; 72.12a). There was also a midwife () who looked after imperial
births and nursing (Hs 68.14a note, sub. Ho Kuang; Hs 97A.22b, sub.
Empress ne Hs of Emperor Hsan, calls her a female physician .
For this office, cf. Sc 105.7b; HHs T.; M.72B.5a sub. Kuo Y, who was
probably the assistant for recipes; A.5.14a, 21b; M.33.4a.

At each of the imperial tombs, before the reign of Emperor Yan, there
was established a county, with a county-seat town. The emperors high
officials and courtiers were given land in this town for their residence,
wealthy people were similarly given land. Conscripts, sometimes
numbering tens of thousands , were transported to the county to build the
tomb. (HFHD, II.327, 328).

Each tumulus was given a special name, distinct from that of the
emperor buried there, and the county and county-seat were called by this
same name. Hence there were three places by the same name: the tomb,
the county, and the town that was the county-seat.
Since the Grand Minister of Ceremonies had charge of the state
religious ceremonies, he was naturally given charge of the imperial tombs
and the counties supporting these tombs. As the passage of time
increased the number of these counties, the Grand Minister of
Ceremonies became a territorial administrator coordinate with the three
adjuncts, who were the governor-general of the capital, the eastern
supporter and the western sustainer. The three departments about the
imperial capital were assigned to these three adjuncts. But the funerary
counties under the charge of the Grand Minister of Ceremonies were
included in the three capital departments. Hence, for the sake of
convenient administration, the control of the funerary counties was given
to the three adjuncts and the Grand Minister of Ceremonies ceased to be
an administrative official. Sfht 6.3b-5b lists the tombs and funerary
counties about Chang-an as follows:
The tomb of the Grand Emperor () the father of Emperor Kao)
on the plain north of the city of Yeh-yang (Le-yang). The county of Wan
nien () was thereupon established inside of Yueh-yang, to be the
funerary town supporting this tomb. The tumulus was 120 paces (540 ft.
Eng. meas.) wide from east to west and thirteen chang (97 ft. Eng. meas)
high. The funerary town was seven li 80 paces (1.8 miles) in circumference.
At the tomb there was a hall (tien), a wall, with gates on all four sides, a
side-hall, lateral courts (for the imperial concubines), with various offices
and buildings inside the wall. The Empress Chao-ling () Emperor
Kaos mother was buried in a mound on the west of her husbands.
Chang-ling (), north of the Wei River, was the county supporting
the Chang Tomb, that of Emperor Kao. The Empress ne L of Emperor
Kao was buried in a tumulus east of her husbands.
An-ling (), located ten li from Chang-ling, supported the An
Tomb, that of Emperor Hui. At this place there was a garden for fruit-trees
and a deer park.
Pa-ling (), seventy li east of Chang-an, supported the Pa Tomb,
that of Emperor Wen. A hill was used instead of making an artificial mound.
Yang-ling (), forty-five li northwest of Chang-an, supported

the Yang Tomb, that of Emperor Ching. The tumulus was 120 paces (540
ft. Eng. meas.) square, and ten chang (75 ft. Eng. meas.) high.
Mou-ling (), 80 li northwest of Chang-an, supported the Mou
Tomb, that of Emperor Wu. The name was taken from that of the Mou
District of Huai-li county, where the tomb was located. The town was 3 li
(3.4 of a mile) in circumference. 16,000 households (one text says 61,000)
were moved to this place. The tumulus was 140 chang (105 ft. Eng. meas.)
tall and 100 paces (450 ft. Eng. meas.) across. In the funerary park there
was the White Crane Lodge.
Ping-ling (), 10 li from Mou-ling towards Chang-an, supported
the Ping Tomb, that of Emperor Chao. These imperial tombs were built by
the emperors themselves, during their lifetime. Because of Emperor
Chaos early death, he did not get to build a tumulus but merely arranged
a stream at the tomb. The stone grave-vault was 12 feet (9 ft. Eng. meas.)
wide and 25 feet {chih} (19 ft. Eng. meas.) long. On the northeast of the
tomb there was a side-building 35 feet {chih};26 ft. Eng. meas.) long,
outside of which there was a small kitchen. It was just large enough for
sacrifices and worship after his death.
Tu-ling (), south of Chang-an, supported the Tu Tomb, that of
Emperor Hsan. While he was still a commoner, he liked to travel about the
counties of Tu and Hu, so he built his tomb at Tu, which then became
The Wei Tomb (), that of Emperor Yan, was located 56 li north
of Chang-an. Emperor Yan, as a good Confucian, did not wish to cause
added expense to his empire by transporting people to his funerary county
and he himself disestablished the counties supporting the tombs of many
imperial personages, so he did not establish a county for his own tomb.
The I Tomb (), that of Emperor Ai, was 46 li from Chang-an. No
county seems to have been established here.
The Kang Tomb (), that of Emperor Ping, was 50 li from
Chang-an. No county seems to have been established here. Nan-ling (
), supporting the Nan Tomb, sometimes called the Po Tomb (), that of
the Concubine ne Po, the mother of Emperor Wen, was south of Pa-ling.
Yn-ling (), south fof the Kan-chan Palace in Yn-yang county
supported the Yn Tomb, that of the Favorite Beauty ne Chao, the
mother of Emperor Chao. It was later popularly called the Womans Tomb

The tomb of the Lady ne Li (), the favorite of Emperor Wu
and the mother of King Ai of Chang-i, Liu Po, was located one li west of the
Mou Tomb. It was fifty paces (225 ft. Eng. meas.) from east to west, 60
paces (270 ft. Eng..; meas.) from north to south, and 8 chang (60 ft. Eng.
Meas.) high. It came to be popularly called the Heros Tomb (), and
was also called the Tower Where Immortals Collect ().
The I-nien Tomb (), the western tumulus in the Chang-shou
Park at the WeiTomb (), was that of Wang Mangs wife, whom
he entitled Empress Hsiao-mu ().

The Office of Equalization had charge of the contributions for the

support of the imperial tombs made by the various counties established to
support those tombs. There was one chief and one assistant in this office.
Since the Grand Minister of Ceremonies had charge of these counties, he
naturally was given a subordinate office of this nature (cf. Hs 19A.4b, Fu
Chiens note). This office was abolished by the Later Han dynasty when
these counties were turned over to other ministers (HHs T. 25.4a). This
office, however, probably had the same function for the funerary counties
subordinate to the Grand Minister of Ceremonies as that of the office of tax
substitution and of price equalization and standards in the rest of the
empire (cf. XIV B, xi, and n. 5 and 6) and the office of price adjustment and
transportation had for the imperial parks (XIV B, xx & n. 3).

The Supervisor of the Waters had charge of the canals, dikes, and
gates for water in the counties under the control of the Grand Minister of
Ceremonies. There was one chief and one assistant in this office (cf. Hs
19A.4b, Ju Shuns note). This office was also abolished by the Later Han
dynasty (HHs T. 25.4a and note).

The Prefects of the Imperial Ancestral Temples were ranked at 600

piculs (HHs T. 25.3a-b). Whether a temple was given a prefect or a chief
depended upon the importance of the person whose ghost was
worshipped there, the prefect being the more important and the higher
salaried official. His duties were to care for the temple, and to keep it clean
and free from intruders (Ibid.). In Former Han times, each temple had also

an assistant. The Later Han dynasty did away with the assistants.
The Former Han dynasty at first had the practice of establishing a
temple for each emperor at the capital and a temple to the father of
Emperor Kao, who was called the Grand Emperor, at the capital of each
vassal kingdom, since these kings were all descended from the Grand
Emperor. The departments visited by Emperor Kao, (entitled the Eminent
Founder), Emperor Wen (the Grand Exemplar), and the forty-nine visited
by Emperor Wu (the Epochal Exemplar) also established temples to these
emperors, so that by 45 B.C. there were 167 imperial ancestral temples
outside the imperial capital. In the capital, there were nine imperial
templesseven emperors, for the father of Emperor Kao, and the father of
Emperor Hsanmaking a total of 176 temples. There were also thirty
other places of worship for other imperial personages such as the mother
of Emperor Kao, his eldest brother and elder sister, the Empress
Dowagers, the grandfather of Emperor Hsan, etc.
In the funerary chambers, food was offered four times a day; in the
temples, sacrifices were made 25 times a year; and in the side-halls,
sacrifices were made at each of the four seasons. In addition, once a
month, the robes and bonnet of the deceased were taken out in
procession. The cost of the food thus offered was 24,455 cash per- year;
45,129 guards were employed for these temples and places of sacrifice, in
addition to 12,416 intercessors, butchers, and musicians, without counting
the conscripts who reared and cared for the future sacrificial victims.
Even to the time of Emperor Wu reverence for these protecting
ghosts prevailed and it was believed that the care of the manes and gods
was the first duty of the state. But the progressive exaltation of
Confucianism which, under the influence of Hsn-tzu, doubted the
existence of spirits, meant a lessening of this superstition. Sometime
during 48-43 B.C., the Confucian Grandee Secretary, Kung Y,
memorialized that the state should return to the ancient practice
concerning temples, which was that the son of heaven maintained only
seven shrines in one temple, placing the tablets of other ancestors with
that of the first ancestor of the house. Thus the Confucian doctrine of
following ancient customs was used to economize in governmental
expenses. In 40 B.C. the temples in the departments and kingdoms were
disestablished together with most of those in the capital (Hspc 73.9b-16b;
HFHD, II.289, 290; cf. also HcyCC, appendix, B.4b-5a). When the Later
Han dynasty moved the imperial capital to Lo-yang, it maintained only two
temples: for Emperor Kao (including the Former Han Imperial names) and

for Emperor Kuang-wu (including Later Han imperial names). The Temples
of Emperor Kao had, in Later Han times, one prefect, ranking at 600 piculs,
who had charge of the temple and the performances there, as well as of
keeping it clean and keeping out intruders. He had no assistant. This
temple had 4 regularly appointed officials and 15 guards. (Li Hsien,
quoting one of the works on the Han bureaucracy, in a note to HHs T.
25.3a). There were twelve rooms in this temple for the twelve Former Han
rulers (Sfhtsp 5.50). The Temple of the Epochal Founder, Emperor
Kuang-wu, also had one prefect, ranking at 600 piculs, who had duties
similar to those of the prefect in the Temple of Emperor Kao. This temple
had six regular officials and 20 guards (Li Hsien, quoting a work on the Han
bureaucracy, in a note to HHs T. 26.3b). There were also gentlemen. ()
attached to the imperial ancestral temple (77 B.C.; HFHD, II.172) probably
to attend upon the imperial ghosts in the same manner that these spirits
were served in their lifetime. For the chief of an imperial ancestral temple,
cf. Hspc 7.9b; HFHD, II.172; Hspc 99A.29b. For the assistant, cf. Ibid.)

The prefects of the funerary chambers were exclusively Former Han

officials. At that time, the funerary chambers were located above the
tumulus of the deceased. Sfht 5.5a declares; The Park of [Emperor) Kao
was made above his tumulus. In addition there was the Main Funerary
Chamber () like the imperial apartments in the Main Hall [of the
Wei-yang Palace in his lifetime. There was also a Side Hall () at the
side of the Funerary Chamber, like the places for recreation and leisure
enjoyment [in the Palace] (Cf. HFHD, II.33, n. 3.9). The Concubines of a
deceased emperor usually moved to the Park at the emperors death
(HFHD, I.271).
I find no statement about these prefects or chiefs and their assistants
at the imperial funerary chambers in Later Han times. They may have been
discontinued for the sake of economy and their duties given to the prefect
of the funerary parks. There were also gentlemen attached to the funerary
chambers (; Hs 66.5a) and palace gentlemen of the funerary chamber
; Hs 79.9b, 10a sub. Feng Tsan). Cf. also Hspc 12.3b; Hs 73.9a-b.

The prefect of the park at an imperial tumulus in Later Han times, ranked
at 600 piculs. There was one for each such tumulus (HHs T. 25.3b). Less
important imperial tombs were given chiefs instead of prefects, although
those bureaucrats at the tombs of imperial personages who had not

actually been emperors were done away with about 40 B.C. (HFHD,
II.289-91). Each tumulus was given a special name in Former Han times,
just as each emperors temple was given a special name. The tomb of
Emperor Kao, for example, was called the Chang Tomb (). For most
of the tombs, there was also established a county, with a newly built city as
its county-seat. This county and county-seat were given the same name as
the tomb. Thus there was not only the Chang Tomb but also the county
and city of Chang-ling. There was not only a prefect for the county of
Chang-ling (in 182 B.C., to honor Emperor Kao who was buried there, the
prefect was specially raised to rank at 2000 piculs, the same as governors
of departments), but also a prefect for the park at the Chang Tomb. The
prefect was in charge of the tomb and park, of superintending it, and of
keeping it clean and warding off intruders (HHs T. 25.3b). He also made
the sacrifices and offerings at the tomb (Hs 79.9b).
It was later said to have been the practice for an emperor, after he
had been on the throne for a year, to begin preparing his tomb, to which
he devoted one-third of his personal revenue, a second third being given
to support the ancestral temples and the remaining third for care of his
guests. (Chin-shu 60.12a). When an emperor died, it was the custom for
his intimate courtiers to follow his corpse to his tomb, and become
gentlemen there (Hs 68.21a). Upon an emperors death, his concubines
were also moved to his funerary park and stayed there for the remainder
of their lives. Very occasionally, an emperor in his will ordered those
concubines whom he had not favored to be sent back home to be married.
Large amounts of valuables were stored in the tomb (Cf. HFHD, I.273, n.1).
Ho Kuang is said to have put in the tomb of Emperor Chao some 190
articles including money, valuables, animals and birds, fish and turtles,
oxen and horses, tigers and leopards, and live birds, and to have moved
the Emperors harem to the funerary park (Hs 72.11a).
The assistant at an imperial tomb funerary park was probably ranked
at 300 piculs (such was the rank of the assistant at the Hsien Tomb, that of
Emperor Shun; HHs M.55.12b note). For assistants there were usually
selected gentlemen of the court who were young, filially pious and
incorrupt, and ardent in military matters. Later, they were promoted to
vacancies among the chief clerks in the various yamens of the prefects in
the offices at the capital, the captains, or the majors. (Hki quote by Li
Hsien in a note to HHs T. 25.3b). There was also one colonel commandant
() who had charge of troops to keep thieves and robbers out of the
tomb and park.

For the prefect of a funerary park, cf. Hs 57B.12a, HHs T. 9.8b. For
the chief and his assistant, cf. Hs 97A.12b.

The prefect of the office of offerings was ranked at 600 piculs. One such
official was appointed at each imperial tomb. The Hki, quoted in a note to
HHs T. 25.3b entitles him the superintendent of offerings (). He is also
mentioned in HHs T. 9.8b. He had charge of making sacrifices and
offerings on the fifteenth and last days of the month and at the seasonal
festivals (HHs T. 25.3b). He had one assistant, who was ranked at 300
piculs, eight eunuchs serving within the Yellow Gate (); their title was
evidently taken from the similar title of officials in the imperial palace; and
two attendant officials. (Ibid)

Yung (or ) was an ancient city and county of the Yu-fu-feng

Department of Han times, located 30 Ii south of the present Feng-hsiang
() in Shensi (Ytc It is said to have been made the capital of the
state of Chin by Duke Te in 677 B.C. In Han times, this county contained
the five state temples to the Five Lords on High (). The First
Emperor of the Chin dynasty moved to Yung the worship of the Four Lords
from Mi-chih (), Hsi-chih (), and the Upper and Lower Altars (
). Emperor Kao added the fifth altar to the Black Lord (). There were
303 temples in this county, for worshipping Tai-hao Fu-hsi, the Yellow
Lord () and other gods. This county also contained the To-chuan
Palace (), built by Duke Mu. (The Huang-lan agrees, but Liu
Hsiang declared that Duke Mu was buried elsewhere). The county also
contained the Chi-nien Palace ( or ), the Palace Praying for
Prolonged Life, built by Duke Hui but said by the Sfht to have been built by
Duke Mu and repaired by Duke Hui). The Y-yang Palace () built by
King Chao of Chin (306-351 B.C.) was also at Yung. This county was thus
an important sacred region, consecrated by immemorial worship, to which
the kings of Chin and Han emperors frequently repaired for worship, and
where palaces had been built for them. It was especially important because
these temples for the Five Lords were there (Hspc 4.13a; 28 Ai, 34a-b).
The establishment of a grand butcher and grand supplicator at this
important, sacred place was therefore necessary These were probably
among the former Chin offices re-established by Emperor Kao (Hs
25A.18b, 19a). I do not find any record of these officials in Later Han times.

With the moving of the capital to Lo-yang, this worship became less

We seem to be told nothing concerning the reason for these changes in

title. Ssu-ma Piao, in HHs T. 25.4a, adds to this list of subordinates of the
grand minister of ceremonies, the statement There was one prefect
invocator. Later he was transferred to be subordinate to the privy
treasurer. Under the latter minister, HHs T. 26.7a lists One prefect
invocator (tzu-ssu ling) [ ranking at] 600 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] note says
He directed the various minor prayers and sacrifices within the palace.
[He had] one assistant. [Ssu-ma Piaos] note says, A eunuch. Li Hsien
quotes one of the early books on administration, There were eight officials
in his retinue (). One groom supervisor () and eight
household shamans (). Thus, in addition to the virile priests and
intercessors for the national cult, the Later Han dynasty added certain
eunuch priests for private worship within the imperial harem. This official
was originally among the officials in the household of the Empress.

The erudits were at first learned men who acted as consultants of the
administration. Later, they also became professors in the Imperial
University. Ying Shao explains that po means to be widely conversant with
ancient and present matters and shih (officer) means that they distinguish
between truth and falsehood (Hki A.9a). Sc 119.3a states that Kung-i Hsiu
(mentioned in Mencius, VI, 119 VI, 3 = Legge, p. 433) was an erudit in the
state of L and that because of his high attainments he became chancellor
of L. Hence, there were erudits in L early in the IV century B.C. There is
also a legend locating an erudit in Sung in 327 B.C. (Sc 128.6b). Hs 51.1a,
moreover, states that Chia Shans grandfather, Chia Ch, had been an
erudits disciple in the state of Wei in the III cent. B.C. (Wang Kuo-wei, Ktcl
4.4a-b). In 212 B.C., there were 70 erudits in the Chin court (Sc 25b
= Mh II,179). Master Fu, who taught the Book of History at the beginning of
the Han period, had been a Chin erudit.
The erudits at first, in Han times, were ranked at 400 piculs. Emperor
Hsan, probably in 51 B.C. (HFHD, II.260, 261) increased their rank to
equivalent to 600 piculs (HHs T. 25.2b). For court robes, they wore the
straight black robe (), an ancient garment not shaped at the waist
and also used as a mourning garment, and the bonnet expressing maturity
() said to have been worn by Confucius and to have been a bonnet of

the Yin period. Cf. Tlt 21.4b). In addressing them, they were called
Teacher () and not Sir () as was the Imperial Chancellor (Hcy
quoted in Tpyl 226, 4a).
The primary duty of the erudits was to act as consultants to the
government and later also to instruct their disciples and students in the
imperial university (Hspc 88.4b). About 4 A.D. Wang Mang also allowed
the sons of officials ranking at 600 piculs, without restrictions as to their
number and as a special favor, to study with the erudits on the same terms
as the disciples (Hspc 88.6a). The erudits function, as the text states, was
to be reservoirs of knowledge concerning the past, so as to be able to
provide precedents for present action whenever they were requested for
such information. Since knowledge of this sort was probably most often
needed concerning matters of ceremony, especially religious matters, the
erudits were made subordinates to the Grand Minister of Ceremonies. In
religion, departure from hallowed precedents was believed to be a most
serious matter. The erudits also supplied precedents for legal decisions
etc. Being the reservoirs of information concerning the Classics and their
interpretation, they may have also taken private advanced students. At the
beginning of the Former Han period, it seems to have been the practice for
learned men to instruct only their advanced pupils, and to have these
pupils instruct beginners. When Tung Chung-shu was an erudit , sometime
during the period 156-141, he shut himself up and studied, and of his
many disciples he taught in person only his more mature students. The
newer disciples could only get help from the more mature ones, so that
some of his disciples did not even get to see him (Hs 56.1a). In the
documents, we find the erudits called in for their opinions on important
matters (HHs T. 25.2b). They also took part in the court discussions
concerning important matters. We find them discussing many criminal
cases (Hs 53.7a, 17a; 60.3b; 68.23a; 76.12b; 83.8b, 16b; 86.14a), even
the dethroning of the emperor in 74 B.C. (Hs 68.5a, 19a). They also
discussed moving the altars to the Five Lords (Hs 25B.12a, 19b) and the
disestablishment of imperial ancestral temples (Hs 73.10b, 11b, 17a).
They discussed the honors to be paid to Emperor Wu (Hs 75.3b) and to
Wang Mang (Hs 99A.21a). They discussed the proposed change made in
the calendar in 104 B.C. (Hs 25A.19b), the color of the court robes
appropriate to the Han dynasty (Hs 25A19b), and the degree of mourning
Wang Mang should perform for his mother (Hs 99A.32a). In the middle of
the Former Han period, most of the erudits were given the concurrent title
of Serving in the Palace (), the possession of which enabled them to
enter the Forbidden Apartments of the Palace and be consulted by the

Emperor (Hs 86.18a). They were frequently sent out by the court to
inspect the empire and report (Hs 6.17a), and were sent by Emperor Wu to
seek the descendants of the Yin dynasty who were to be enfeoffed (Hs
67.l2b). At the court, they performed the ancient ceremony of the archery
contest (Hs 27Bc.9a) and participated in the first great Confucian council
in 51 B.C. (HFHD, II.271-74). The government kept these officials for
consultants; teaching others was less important.
Prospective erudits had to be in their fiftieth year or over (Hki quoted
in a note to HHs M.69B.5a, sub. Yang Jen). They were expected to be of
good deportment and learned in the Confucian Classics and traditions of
government (HFHD, II.390 quotes an imperial edict specifying these
requirements; a note to HHs M 23.5b-6a quotes from the Hki a memorial
recommending a person for the position of erudit). The ministers and
officials ranking at 2000 piculs recommended prospective erudits (Ibid.);
they were examined (Hs 81.11b) and selected by the Grand Minister of
Ceremonies (HHs T. 25.1a). Sometimes gentlemen-consultants were
promoted to be erudits. (Hs 84.1b). Erudits of the highest attainments
might be promoted to be Masters of Writing, those of the next grade might
be made inspectors of regional divisions, and those of the lowest grade
might be made grand tutors to vassal kings (Hs 81.15b) or
grandee-remonstrants (Hkicc A.7b). Those who understood administration
might be made governors of departments or chancellors of kingdoms
(Hspc 78.3a).
One of the erudits was selected to be supervisor of the erudits (
), and was ranked at 600 piculs. This official already existed in Ch'in
times ( Sc 6.22b, 87.6a = Bodde, 38, 22 Bodde has misunderstood this
title), and was continued by the Former Han dynasty (Hs 19A.6a). The
later Han dynasty changed the title of this official to be the erudit libationer
(HHs T. 25.2a). Hu Kuang explains that the libationer was the chief of the
erudits. According to ancient custom, when guests receive viands from
their host, one aged person takes up the wine and sacrifices of it to Earth.
This ancient expression is used to indicate that he is the head. The Grand
Minister of Ceremonies appointed one wise and revered erudit as their
libationer, who should act to unify them (HHs M.23.5b).
There was also a superintendent of the imperial private library (
) who was ranked at 600 piculs and who had charge of documents,
charts, and writings, and of making uniform the writing of characters. This
library was kept in the Eastern Lodge () and the Orchid Tower of the

imperial palace. This office seems to have been established after 147 A.D.,
because previously an attendant within the palace superintended the
imperial private library (HHs M.69.9b). For this official, cf. also HHs
The disciples of the erudits. seem not to have been officially
appointed until 124 B.C. when the Imperial University was established.
They were addressed as men-jen (), a phrase used nine times in the
Analects to denote disciples. They may have done some of the teaching in
the Imperial University and seem not to have been given any salary but
merely to have been exempted probably from taxes and forced service.
Emperor Wu fixed their number at 50 (Hspc 88.4b). Emperor Chao (86-74
B, C.) increased their number to 100 (Hspc 88.6a). In 44 B.C. Emperor
Yan removed the restrictions on the number of disciples, and exempted
all those who comprehended even one classic (HFHD, II.315), but in 41
B.C., this action was rescinded because the number of exempted persons
had proved to be too great (HFHD, II.324). The number of exempted
disciples was now fixed at 1,000 (Hspc 88.6a). At the same time, the
departments and kingdoms were ordered to establish secondary clerks for
the five classics, ranking at 100 piculs () Hspc 88.6a).
Towards 7 B.C., Emperor Cheng increased the number of exempted
disciples to 3,000 to match the number of Confucius disciples, but a year
or so later rescinded this order (Ibid.). This number, 1,000 disciples, does
not mean that there were necessarily that many disciples at any one time;
it was merely the upper limit to their number.
Yearly in the Imperial University, the students were examined. The
forty who were classed in the first rank became gentlemen-of-the-palace
(lang-chung), from which position the Emperor might appoint them to a
substantial position in the bureaucracy. The twenty of the second rank
became members of the suite of the heir apparent (), thus
possibly being advanced by him, especially after he came to the throne.
The forty in the third rank were given vacancies as literary scholars and
authorities upon ancient matters ( Hspc 88.6b). If there was a
person of accomplished talents of an usual degree (), his name
was reported to the throne. If any disciples did not study, so that they were
unable to comprehend even one classic, they were dismissed and
punished (Hspc 88.5a; in 124 BC., Chang Tang-ch, Marquis of
Shan-yang, was punished because, as Grand Minister of Ceremonies, he
had selected unworthy persons to be disciples of the erudits. Hspc 17.4a;
Hs 19B.17a. He was dismissed from his marquisate and his position and

sentenced to penal servitude to build the fortifications or patrol from the

dawn for four years.) Chao Tso was also once an authority on ancient
matters to the Grand Master of Ceremonies (Hspc 49.8a). Ying Shao
stated that these authorities on ancient matters were clerks to officials
ranking at 600 piculs and had charge of ancient matters (Hs 49.8a note).
They might be made officials ranking at equivalent to 200 piculs or at 100
piculs or secondary clerks to the eastern supporter or western sustainer of
the grand herald, ranking at 100 piculs or less. The grand governors of the
inner departments each had two of these authorities on ancient matters
who were made secondary clerks () ) while the border departments
each had one authority on ancient matters. Those who were not ranked as
authorities on ancient matters might be made subordinates to officials
ranking at 2000 piculs or regular subordinates in the departments. (Hspc
88.5b, 6a)

The changes in the number of the erudits, indicates the growing

importance of Confucianism (Cf. HFHD, II.341-353). The Chin court had
70 erudits (212 B.C.; Sc 6.25b=Mh II, 179). Master Fu, who recovered and
taught the Book of History at the beginning of the Han period, had been a
Chin erudit . (Hs 88.11a). According to Wang Kuo-wei, the Chin dynasty
had erudits for the Hundred Schools of Philosophy, poetry, magic and
necromancy as well as for propriety, music, archery, charioteering, writing
and mathematics (Ktcl 4.4b).
At the beginning of the Han period, we are not told about the number
of erudits. We know that Emperor Kao made Shu-sun Tung an erudit and
that the latter arranged the Han Court ceremonial. Emperor Wen (179-157
B.C.) had 70 eruditsthe same number as the Chin court (Tlt 21.4b).
Certain of these erudits specialized in the Analects, the Classic of Filial
Piety, and the Erh-ya. (The Preface to the Meng-tzu by Chao Chi
108-201 A.D. quoted in MTCS, Ti-tzu Chieh, 4b says, Emperor
Hsiao-wen wished to widen the road to scholarship, so he established
erudits for the Lun-y, the Hsiao-ching, the Meng-tzu, and the Erh-ya.
Later the erudits for [private] books and records were done away with and
only those for the five Classics were established.)
Most of the erudits in Emperor Wens court specialized in
non-Confucian teachings. The only Confucian erudits in Emperor Wens
court whose names we know are Chia I (Hspc 36.32b), Shen Pei, and
Yan Ku. In 141 B.C., Emperor. Wu dismissed all officials who belonged to
the Legalist school (Hspc 6.1b), and possibly those of all but the

Confucian school (Hspc 6.39a), which measure undoubtedly eliminated

almost all the existing erudits.
In 136 B.C., all erudits were dismissed except for five, one for each of
the five Confucian Classics (HFHD, II.32; cf. note 3.7). Until 124 B.C., when
the Imperial University was founded, the function of the erudits seems to
have been solely consultative. Any teaching they did was entirely private
and not part of their official duties. Thereafter, teaching in the University
was added, but whether it was teaching through the officially appointed
disciples or by lecturing in person we are not told. During 107-25, the
erudits ceased to lecture (HHsCC 69A.2a), teaching being done by others.
The five Classics were the Book of Odes, the Book of History, the
Book of Rites, the Book of Changes, and the Spring and Autumn Annals
with the Kung-yang Commentary (Hspc 36.2a declares that Emperor Wen
made Shen Pei an erudit because of his knowledge of the Book of Odes;
Hspc 88.35b mentions the other four). Shen Pei taught the L text and
tradition concerning the Book of Odes and Master Ou-yang Ho-po (Hspc
88.11b) taught the Book of History (Hspc 88.11b). Hou Tsang taught the
Book of Rites (also the Chi text and tradition concerning the Book of Odes.
Hspc 88.19b, 21a). Tien Ho taught the Book of Changes (Hspc 88.35b
mentions Yang Ho, but the latter lived almost a century later, while Hspc
88.6a mentions the former).
In 49 B.C. Emperor Hsan increased the number of erudits to twelve,
following upon the famous Confucian council held in the Shih-ch Pavillion
(Hs 19A.5a; HFHD, H, 271-74). In addition to the five schools of
interpretation mentioned above, for whom erudits had previously been
established, there were added erudits for the following interpretations: for
the Book of History, erudits for the interpretations by Hsia-hou Sheng
(Hspc 88.12a-b) and by Hsia-hou Chien (Hspc 88.13b); for the Book of
Rites, erudits for the interpretations by Tai Te (i.e., the material made into
Ta-tai Li-chi, which was originally considered as an interpretation of the I-li)
and by Tai Sheng (i.e., the material made into the present Li-chi; Hspc
88.7b); for the Book of Changes, erudits for the interpretations by Shih
Chou (Hspc 88.7b), by Meng Hsi (Hspc 88.8a) and by Liang-chiu Ho
(Hspc 88.9a); and an erudit for the Ku-liang Commentary to the Spring
and Autumn Annals (Hspc 88.25b). In the time of Emperor Yan, an erudit
was added for the interpretation of the Book of Changes by Ching Fang
Hspc 88.10a). In A.D. 4, Wang Mang also added erudits for the Tso-chuan
Commentary on the Spring and Autumn Annals, the Mao text of the Book
of Odes, the lostBook of Rites, and the ancient text of the Book of History .

(Hspc 88.25b, 26a.) Hs 99A.23b states that Wang Mang established five
erudits for each classic, including the newly accepted Classic of Music.
Wang Mangs exaltation of these books helped to prevent their
acceptance in the Later Han period.
In the period 25-29 A.D. Emperor Kuang-wu of the Later Han dynasty
increased the number of erudits to fourteen, and HHs T. 25.2a-b and
HHsCC M.69A.1a enumerate their specialities as follows: four erudits for
the Book of Changes, namely those teaching the interpretations of Shih
Chou, of Meng Hsi, of Liang-chiu Ho and of Ching Fang; three for the
Book of History, namely those for the interpretations of Ou-yang Ho-po,
Hsia-hou Sheng and Hsia-hou Chien; three for the Book of Odes, for the
interpretations of the Lu, Chi, and Han texts of that work (the Mao text,
which is the present one, was not accepted as canonical until later); two for
the Book of Rites, namely the interpretations of the I-li by Tai Te and Tai
Sheng and for the Spring and Autumn Annals with the Kung-yang
Commentary, namely the interpretations of Chuang Peng-tsu and Yen
An-lo (HHsCC M.69B states that there was also an erudit appointed to
teach Cheng_-pos interpretation of the Rites). (On these erudits, see
also Hspc 88.7b-22b). At the Confucian council of A.D. 79 in the White
Tiger Lodge, Emperor Chang ordered that the ancient text of the Book of
History, the Mao text of the Book of Odes, the Ku-liang and Tso-chuan
Commentaries to the Spring and Autumn Annals should be taught, but
erudits were not established for them (HHsCC M.69A.2a; Ibid., 69B.8a,
however, states that an erudit was established for the Ku-liang
Commentary.) The whole question of erudits for these various texts
involves the Old Text-New Text Controversy and its political implications.
During the time of Emperor Kuang-wu, at the urging of Cheng Hsing
and Chen Hsan, Li Feng was made an erudit for the Tso-chuan but there
was opposition and after Li Fengs death this office was not again filled
(HHsCC M.69B.15a). A stele to Kao Piao, prefect of Wai-huan, however,
states that Emperor Huan (147-167) made Hung Kuo an erudit for the
Tso-chuan, which office was later done away with. (Hui Tung in HHsCC M.
For other mentions of the erudits, cf. HHs A.2.1b; A.3.6a; A.4.8b;
A.7.2a; M.17.10a-b; M.15.6b; M.29.14a; M.25.7a; M.38.2b; M.31.19a;
M.38.15b; M.38.4a; M.52.12a; M.26.7a; M.54.4a-b, 12a;, 2a, 3b,
5a, 6a-b, 7b, 8a-b, 9a-b, 11a, 14b;, 2a-b, 4a, 5a`b, 6b, 7a, 8a-b,
9b, lla-b, 12a, 15a; M.7I.3a-b, 15a; M.72A.4b, 8b, 10a, 13a-b.


See note 10.


Wang Mang changed most of the titles of officials in the Han

bureaucracy, because (1) as a good Confucian, he believed that ancient
models should be followed, so he adopted anciently used titles, and
because (2) he followed the Confucian principle that realities should be
indicated in names (). Since he founded a new dynasty, he believed
that this change should be indicated by a change in the names of his
officials, names of cities, departments, etc. In making these changes, he
also attempted to secure lucky phrasings. As a result, his alterations in
names became so many that even the officials could not keep track of
them. Sometimes he changed the name of a city half a dozen times, finally
coming back to the original name!
In this account, we shall omit a discussion of Wang Mangs period. It
was brief and it left few permanent traces upon Chinese institutions. For a
translation of Wang Mangs biography, cf. Dubs, History of the Former
Han,. Vol. III.

Government XIV Ba, 7

The Superintendent of the Imperial Household
The prefect of the gentlemen-of-the-palace () was a Chin
official. He had charge of the gates and doors of the halls and side 104
halls in the [imperial) palace. He had an assistant. In the first year of B.C.
[the period! Tai-chu, Emperor Wu changed his title to be superintendent
of the imperial household ().2
Among his subordinates there were the grandees (),3 the
gentlemen (), and the internuncio (), all of whom were Ch'in
officials. The chi-men () [guard)6 and the y-lin () [guard)7 were
also subordinate to him.
The grandees had, for their duty, discussion and consultation. There
were grand-palace-grandees (),8 palace-grandees ()9 and
grandee-remonstrants () for each of whom there was no fixed
number. They might number as many as several tens. In the fifth year of
[the period] Yan-shou (118 B.C.), Emperor Wu for the first time
established grandee-remonstrants, ranking them as equivalent to 800
piculs.11 In the first year of the [period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.), he changed
the title of the palace-grandees to grandees-illustrious (), ranking
them as equivalent to 2000 piculs. The grand-palace-grandees ranked
as equivalent to 1000 piculs as before.
Gentlemen had as their duty the guarding of the gates and doors [of
the palace. When the emperor] went out, they served in the chariots and
as horsemen [of the imperial escort]. There were gentlemen-consultants
(), palace-gentlemen (), attendant-gentlemen (), and
gentlemen-of-the-palace (),16 for each of whom there was no fixed
number. They might number as many as a thousand. the
gentlemen-consultants and the palace-gentlemen ranked as equivalent to
600 piculs, the attendant gentlemen as equivalent to 400 piculs, and the
gentlemen-of the-palace as equivalent to 300 piculs. For the

palace-gentlemen there were the marshal of the palace-gentlemen for all

the five offices ()17 the marshal of the palace-gentlemen on the
left (),18 and the marshal of the palace-gentlemen on the right (
), all of whom ranked as equivalent to 2000 piculs. For the
gentlemen-of-the palace there were three marshals: for [those in charge of]
the chariots, for [those guarding] the gate, and for [those who were]
cavalrymen,22 all of whom ranked as equivalent to 1000 piculs.
Internuncios had charge of guests and announcing them and of
receiving matters [of government business]. Their number was fixed at
seventy, and they were ranked as equivalent to 600 piculs. They had a
supervisor (), who ranked as equivalent to 1000 piculs.23
The chi-men [guard] had as their duty the bearing of weapons and
of escorting. In the third year of [the period] Chien-Yan (138 B.C.),
Emperor Wu for the first time established [this office, ranking it] the same
as the gentlemen. They had no fixed number and might be as many as a
thousand. They had a supervisor who ranked as equivalent to a thousand
piculs. In the first year of [the period] Yan-shih (3 AD), Emperor Ping
changed their title to be the gentlemen-as-rapid-as-tigers () and
established [for them] a general of the palace-gentlemen
[as-rapid-as-tigers] ([]), ranking as equivalent to 2000 piculs.
The y-lin [guard] had as its duty escorting. They [were ranked] after
the chi-men [guard]. In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.)
Emperor Wu for the first time a established [this corps], entitling them the
horsemen-of the encampment at the Chien-chang [Palace] ()
Later he changed their title to be the y-lin cavalry (). He also took
sons and grandsons of those who had died on military expeditions and had
them reared at the office of the y-lin, teaching them the [use of] the five
[kinds] of weapons,26 and calling them the y-lin orphans (). For
the y-lin there was a prefect () and an assistant (). Emperor Hsan
ordered the marshal of the palace gentlemen and the chief commandants
of cavalry () to superintend () the y-lin ranking them as
equivalent to 2000 piculs.

The supervisors () were Chin officials. The Attendants Within

the Palace (), the Masters of Documents (), the Erudit (), and
the Gentlemen () all had [Supervisors]. The ancients esteemed military
offices and had a Master of Archery () to supervise and examine them.
The garrison officers (), the grooms () the Yung-hsiang (),
and the Palace Women () all had [Supervisors.] who took the names
of these services respectively as their titles.
Hs 19A.5a-6b

The prefect of the gentlemen-of-the-palace seems merely to have been

an earlier title for the superintendent of the imperial household. When,
under Emperor Wu, the grandees, gentlemen, etc. in the imperial
household became more numerous, so that this office became more
important, and when Emperor Wu wished to distinguish the orthodox
Confucian Han institutions from the unorthodox Chin legalist institutions,
he changed the title of this official. Later, the title of prefect of the
gentlemen-of-the-palace was again used with a different connotation.

The superintendent of the imperial household was one of the nine high
ministers. HHs T. 25.4a says, The single superintendent of the imperial
house-hold and high minister (kuang-lu-hsn ching) [was ranked at] fully
two thousand piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, He had charge of
those who acted as guards at the gates and doors of the palace halls. He
directed the internuncios and gentlemen of the offices, and in their turn,
posted them as spear-bearers () to act as guards at the gates and
doors. He investigated their virtue and conduct and accordingly promoted
or demoted them. At the suburban sacrifices [to Heaven and Earth] and at
other sacrifices he had charge of making the three offerings. He had one
assistant, who ranked as equivalent to 1000 piculs.
In 43 B.C., Emperor Yan directed that the superintendent of the
imperial household should yearly examine and rank the gentlemen and

[imperial] retinue according to, the [four qualities] (HFHD, II.317). These
qualities were (1) sincerity and honesty, (2) simplicity and
straightforwardness, (3) humility and yielding to others, and (4)
self-restraint and economy (Ibid., n. 7.5). Since the commonest way of
entering the government bureaucracy was to spend a term as a member of
the imperial retinue, in order that the emperor might have the opportunity
to become acquainted with a prospective appointee, and since the
bureaucracy had grown to such a size that even an industrious emperor
could no longer become acquainted with all of his retinue, it was logical
that the superintendent of the imperial household, who was set over this
retinue, should be asked to rank these persons, in order that the emperor
might know whom he should pay especial attention to. Thus a moral test
was given to prospective bureaucrats, which was subsequent to the
literary test already passed by many of them.
The superintendent of the imperial household yearly held a military review
of the gentlemen and the y-lin guards. (Hs 68.3b). His office was within
the palace (HFHD, I.208). He seems to have been the one of the high
ministers that was closest to the emperor (Hs 77.7a) and was called the
intimate courtier who acted as the imperial guard (; Hs 66.11a sub
Yang Yn). From the time of Emperors Chao and Hsan, for the most part
a general concurrently occupied the post of superintendent of the imperial
household. For example, Chang An-shih held this post while general of the
right; Fan Ming-yu was general who crossed the Liao River; Hsiao
Wang-chih, Feng Feng-shih and Hsin Ching-chi were also generals.

The Grandees were persons invited by the emperor to be in the court in

order to be prepared to advise on matters of government. They had no
regular duties except that of answering questions put to them and giving
advice. HHs T. 25.6b states, In general, grandees and
gentlemen-consultants both have the duty of answering questions which
are put to them and have no regular duties. When they are given a
mandate by an imperial edict, they may be sent [on a mission]. They were
sometimes sent out as envoys to foreign countries (Hs 43.8b) and they
were sent to supervise the funerals of nobles, transmit the imperial
presents, and install the heir (HFHD, I.319). The different titles for
grandees were chiefly to indicate their relative importance and salaries.
After the time of Emperor Wu, the higher ranks of grandees were usually
filled by outstanding Confucian scholars.

The gentlemen constituted the bulk of the Han imperial court. They seem
generally to have been scions of well-to-do families who entered the court
to wait upon the emperor with the expectation that, as he became
acquainted with them he would appoint them to a vacancy in the
bureaucracy. While they were gentlemen, their expenses might be very
In general, during Han times, there were three ways of entering the
bureaucracy: (1) by becoming a gentleman of the court; (2) by entering
the service of some provincial, departmental or royal administrator, and
being recommended by this official to the imperial court, either directly for
office or being sent to the imperial court where this person would be given
an examination whereupon he might be made a gentleman of the imperial
court or might be directly appointed to office. Ptsc 79.2a quotes the HcI to
the effect that in 140 B.C. Emperor Wu ordered the departments and
kingdoms each to recommend one person who was filial and incorrupt, who
was to come to the office of the grandee secretary (with the assistant
governors who brought the yearly accounts), and was to be given an
examination whereupon he might be installed as a
gentleman-of-the-palace. In this manner Wang Chi (Hspc 72.3b) and
Ching Fang (Ibid., 75.5b) received their first positions. (3) A third method
was by receiving a special imperial summons. Wei Wan attracted the
attention of Emperor Wen by his skill in juggling wheels and was made a
gentleman (Hspc 46.6a). Various literary men attracted the imperial
attention by presenting to the court their poems or other writings, and were
made gentlemen (Hspc 43.12a; 64A.19a). After the Imperial University was
established by Emperor Wu, its operation was integrated into the former
system. Its students were persons who had been recommended by
provincial and local officials to the imperial court. The candidate was sent
by them to the capital along with the assistant governor who brought the
yearly reports from the departments. Thereupon, the candidate entered
the Imperial University, studied, and, at the proper time, sat for the
examinations. If he ranked in the first grade, he was made a gentleman.
The second grade became members of the suite (an equivalent status) to
the imperial heir-apparent, while the third grade was apportioned among
the various offices as subordinates. These positions might later lead this
person to be recommended by his superior to be a gentleman, or to
appointment in a substantial post. Since, however, only, forty of the

Universitys graduates were made gentlemen in each year, and since the
gentlemen numbered thousands, the University, while providing a constant
supply of gentlemen, yet could not compete in numbers with other means
of entering the ranks of the gentlemen. When, however, an emperor came
to select from among his large number of gentlemen persons to appoint to
office, Confucian emperors were likely to favor graduates from the
University, especially when a Confucian Superintendent of the Imperial
Household was likely to recommend such graduates as possessing the
four virtues, so that the influence of the University upon the bureaucracy
was greater than upon the ranks of the gentlemen. The position of
gentleman was the most important means of entering the Han
At first, entrance to the ranks of gentlemen was open only to those
who had wealth, on the principle that persons who had wealth would not be
covetous for more. All persons had to pay a poll-tax (suan ) of 127 cash
on every 10,000 cash worth of their property. To become a gentleman, a
person had to have property sufficient to pay ten poll-taxes, i.e., 100,000
cash worth (HFHD, I.329 & n. 9.9). This amount was equivalent to the
property of a family of medium means (Ibid., I, 272). Persons with greater
property than the minimum were placed in the higher ranks of gentlemen.
Those whose property amounted to 500,000 cash were made regularly
attending gentlemen (); they regularly waited upon the emperor
(from a Han note to Hs
There were additional requirements. They had to be incorrupt.
Merchants, sons or grandsons of merchants were not allowed to become
gentlemen (HFHD, I.331). Persons whose homes were in vassal kingdoms
were not permitted to become gentlemen in the imperial court (Hspc
72.16a; in this passage, to be on guard and receive a vacancy as an
official means to become a gentleman). The reason seems to have been
that the vassal kings maintained their own courts and opportunities to
become gentlemen in these courts were available to persons from these
kingdoms. They seem also to have been expected to be loyal to their own
kings, so could not be trusted entirely in the imperial service. There may
also have been a further unofficial restriction to the effect that gentlemen
must be sons of good families (liang-chia-tzu ). Good families
were those who were not physicians, shamans, pedlars, merchants, or

artisans (Ju Shun in a note to Skk 109.2). In 142 B.C.. Emperor Ching
reduced the amount of property required of a gentleman to 40,000 cash,
in order to admit incorrupt persons of lesser means (HFHD, I.331).
A natural consequence of the monetary requirement for becoming a
gentleman was that this position came to be looked upon as a valuable
perquisite. About 127 B.C., Emperor Wu was in financial difficulties
because of his continual military expeditions and also needed recruits for
his armies. He solicited people to present to the court male and female
slaves, promising to exempt the persons making these presents from taxes
and make them gentlemen and gave them high rank. At this time there
began the practice of becoming a gentleman by paying sheep to the
government (Hspc 24B.7b, 8a). In 15 B.C., Emperor Cheng enacted that
persons who had contributed 300,000 cash towards the relief of the poor
in a famine should be made gentlemen, if they had been commoners
(HFHD, II.404), and in A.D. 20, when Wang Mang needed money to build
his ancestral temples. he offered the post of gentleman to anyone who
would pay 600 hu of grain, adding that they would be given substantial
positions thereafter (Hs 99C.11a). There are then grounds for suspecting
that the position of gentleman was attainable by monetary means. This
practice does not quite constitute selling of government positions for
gentlemen were not necessarily appointed to office, but it comes very
close to such a practice.
Distinguished service in the army seems also to have been a means
of entering the ranks of the gentlemen. Sons of good families who
distinguished themselves in battle became gentlemen (Skk 190.2). A
member of the y-lin guard who distinguished himself might also be made
a gentleman (Hspc 70.5a). Merely being the descendant of someone who
had distinguished himself in the wars at the end of the Chou period was
sometimes enough (Hspc 79.1b).
There was a marked tendency for substantial official positions to be
continued in the families of those who had been high officials. Towards the
beginning of Emperor Wus reign Tung Chung-shu declared, Most of the
substantial officials (i. e. , governors of departments, prefects or chiefs of
counties, etc.) had come from the ranks of the gentlemen-of-the-palace or
palace gentlemen or were sons, nephews, or brothers of officials ranking

at 2000 piculs, while gentlemen and officials were selected from among
those who had wealth and property, who were not necessarily capable.
(Hspc 56.12a-b). There was a provision that officials ranking at 2000
piculs or above, who have attended to [government] affairs for three full
years, are permitted to obtain the position of gentleman for one of [their
brothers] of half-brothers of the same father [or for this persons sons], or
for a son. (Hyc quoted in a note to Hspc 11.3a; confirmed by a statement
by Wang Chi about 70 B.C.; Hs 72.8a). Thus the children, brothers, and
nephews of high officials could enter the bureaucracy, which accordingly
tended to be monopolized by certain families.
In 7 B.C. , Emperor Ai did away with this privilege. Since Tung
Chung-shu had attacked it, when Confucianism came into power, his
authority was so great with Confucians that they did away with the privilege.
At this time, the children of officials were probably attending schools and
found a freer entrance into the bureaucracy though learning.
The point of this privilege was that, even before the establishment of
the Imperial University, there was a selection made among persons who
would become gentlemen (Hs 24B.8a), and that this privilege was a means
of being admitted to the ranks of the gentlemen without undergoing this
Hs 25.4b states, In general, the offices of the gentlemen had charge
of those who were performing their periodic military service. They served
as spear-bearers and acted as guards at the gates to the various [palace]
halls. When [the emperor] went out, they had the duty of [being in charge
of the accompanying] chariots and being [escorting] horsemen. Only the
gentlemen-consultants did not have this duty.

The internuncios acted as ushers and messengers in the court. HHs M

25.7b says [There were] five regularly attending internuncios ()
[ who were ranked as] equivalent to 600 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original
note says, They had charge of the majestic ceremonies at the seasons
and festivals in the [palace] halls above. [There were] thirty internuncios.
Those who were internuncios-serving-in-the-[palace () were
ranked at] 400 piculs.Those who were faithful internuncios () and

gentlemen-of-the-palace were [ranked as] equivalent to 300 piculs.

[Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, They had charge of guests, making
announcements, of receiving [matters of government] business, together
with presenting documents [to the throne] and of reporting responses to
questions. At the mourning ceremonies for grandees or those of lower
[rank], they had charge of acting as messengers of condolence. Originally
there were seventy of them, but at the restoration of [the Han dynasty] only
thirty of them [were established as their regular number]. At first [an
internuncio] became a faithful internuncio. After a full year he became an

The chi-men guard (the title means Attendants at the Gates as they
waited at the gates in order to escort the emperor), later entitled the
gentlemen-as-rapid-as-tigers was the higher ranking of the two elite corps
at the capital. They were posted about the throne at court assemblages
and guarded the emperor as well as forming part of his cortege (HHs T
25.5a-b). This guard was composed of palace attendants, regular palace
attendants, cavalry, and expectant appointees who were sons of good
families and able in riding and shooting (Hktw 2.6a, b).

The y-lin guard was the second of the elite corps. HHs M.25.5b, 6a says,
The Yu-lin gentlemen [ranked as] equivalent to 300 piculs. [Ssu-ma
Piaos ] original note says, They had no fixed number. Their duty was to
be on guard, to attend, and to accompany. People of good families from
the six departments of Han-yang, Lung-hsi, An-ting, Pei-ti, Shang, and
Hsi-ho were selected for vacancies [in this corps]. Originally, Emperor Wu
had, them accompanying him in hunting because they were skilled in
horsemanship. When they returned they were put on guard in the rooms of
the cave-[like places] below the steps [to the throne] in the [palace] hall.
Hence they were called the cave gentlemen.'

HHs T. 25.7a adds, There was no fixed number [for them], and Li Hsien
quotes one of the works on the Han bureaucracy stating that there were
thirty-six of them. They might be sent on missions outside the boundaries
of China (Lu Chia, in this capacity was sent to the state of Nan-yueh, Hs
43.7a, 9a) or to inspect the conditions of the country (Hs 77.2a). When
marquises died, they were sent to supervise the funeral and invest the heir
to the marquisate (HFHD, I.319). Erudits (Hs 48.1b) or attendant

secretaries (Hs 59.1b) might be promoted to be grand palace grandees.

They were ranked at 1000 piculs (HHs T. 25.7a).

The title of palace grandee was ancient. The LSCC 17.12a (Wilhelms
trans. p. 278) notes that in {the Fifth Century} B.C. Viscount Hsiang of
Chao made Tan Hs-chi a Palace Grandee. In place of palace grandees
(for whom there were substituted the much higher ranking imperial
household grandees). HHs T. 25.7a lists
palace-grandees-without-specified appointment (chung-san-ta-fu)
[ranking] 600 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, They had no fixed
number. These officials seem to have first been appointed by Wang Mang
(Hspc 78.14b, 99C.13b). Li Hsien quotes one of the works on the Han
bureaucracy that There were thirty-six [of them] and they ranked at
equivalent to 2000 piculs.

Emperor Kuang-wu added a word to the title of these grandees calling

them grandee-remonstrants-and-consultants (chien-i ta-fu ),
ranking at 600 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says They had no
fixed number (HHs T. 25.7a). Confucians who disseminated the Classics
and were of well-known conduct and personalities were appointed to this
position (Hs 36.6a; Hs 72.5b; Hs 78.3a). Their duty was to remonstrate. Hs
72 [Hspc 72.20b-23a] contains a long and daring memorial dated 6 B.C.
by Pao Hsan criticizing the emperors action which was tolerated by the
emperor because of Pao Hsans high reputation as a Confucian. The
grandee-remonstrant had thus much the same duty as the later censors.
To this position were promoted gentlemen-consultants (Hs 77.10b),
prefects of counties (Hs 77.6b), and persons who had been recommended
to the court as capable and good and sincere and upright and who had
attained a high grade in the written examinations (Hs 86.1b; Hs In
the time of Emperor Hsan, grandee-remonstrants who understood
administration were given vacancies as governors of departments or
chancellors of kingdoms (Hs 78.3a) or sent out of the court to be an
inspector (Hs 77.10b) .
Hui Tung (1679-1758) quotes the Usages in the Chi Dynastys
Offices(Chi Chih-kuan-i) by Wang Kuei-chih (fl. during 483-493; this book
has been lost since Sung times), The Chin [dynasty] established
grandee-remonstrants. They were subordinate to the prefect of the

gentlemen-of-the-palace and had no fixed number. There were as many

as several tens of them. Their duty was discussion and consultation. At its
beginning, the Han [dynasty] did not establish [such officials, but] Emperor
Wu first followed the Chin [practice] and established them. They had no
fixed number. All were famous Confucians who were given [this position]
because they had made virtue their constant practice. [Emperor]
Kuang-wu added the word consultant () [to their title], making it
grandee-remonstrants-and-consultants and established thirty of them.
(This statement appears entirely too elaborate and definite to me, I am
inclined to doubt its worth since it may be merely bolstering up a very
difficult position by making it ancient. The Chin rulers did not care for
remonstrances. H.H. Dubs.)

In a memorial dated about 44 B.C., Kung Yu states that he had been

made a grandee-remonstrant, ranking at equivalent to 800 piculs, and had
received a monthly salary of 9,200 cash (Hspc 72.12a).
In 23 B.C., the rank of 800 piculs was eliminated and the former occupants
of that rank were given 600 piculs (HFHD, II.389 & n. 7.2). Hence after this
date, grandee-remonstrants ranked at 600 piculs.

HHs T. 25.6b says, Grandees-illustrious ranked at equivalent to 2000

piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, They had no fixed number. . .
Whenever the heir to the throne of a kingdom mourned [for a deceased
parent], a grandee-illustrious had charge of expressing [the emperors]
condolences. Li Hsien quotes one of the works on the Han bureaucracy,
There were three of them. This office was usually occupied by a learned
Confucian of spotless character who was prepared to respond to inquiries
from the throne and to offer remonstrances. He took part in the court
discussions and might be sent outside of the borders on an embassy.
When a vassal king died, the emperor sent a grandee-illustrious to
console, provide grave-clothes, sacrificial food, funeral horses and
chariots, oversee the mourning ceremonies, and enthrone the heir to the
kingdom (HFHD, I.318 ff). Many of these grandees-illustrious concurrently
held other posts, such as intendant-of-affairs-of the-masters-of-writing or
as a general. The post was honored and favored and close to the throne.
Kung Yu, in a memorial dated about 44 B.C., declared that as a
grandee-illustrious ranking at equivalent to 2000 piculs, he received

monthly 12,000 cash (Hspc 72.12a). This official was not given an official
seal or cord (Hs 19A.16b).

For the gentlemen-consultants, cf. note 3 and the last part of note 4.
They were ranked at 600 piculs. They had no fixed number (HHs M.25.7a).

The palace-gentlemen were divided among three offices: that of the

marshal of the palace-gentlemen for all five offices, that of the marshal of
the palace-gentlemen on the left, and that of the marshal of the
palace-gentlemen on the right. They ranked at equivalent to 600 piculs
(HHs T. 25.4b-5a). There were also other palace-gentlemen such as the
palace-gentlemen-as-rapid-as-tigers and the y-lin palace-gentlemen.
They had no fixed number.

The attendant-gentlemen were also divided among the three offices of

gentlemen (cf. note 14). They ranked at equivalent to 400 piculs. There
was no fixed number for them (HHs M.25.4b-5a).

The gentlemen-of-the-palace were also divided among the three offices

of gentlemen. They ranked at equivalent to 300 piculs. There was no fixed
number for them (HHs M.25.4b-5a).

The marshal of the palace-gentlemen for all five offices controlled the
first of the three offices () of gentleman. HHs M.25.4b says [There
was] one marshal of the palace gentlemen for all five offices, ranking at
equivalent to 2000 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, He had
charge of the gentlemen for all the offices. [There were] palace-gentlemen
for all the offices (), [ranking at] equivalent to 600 piculs. [Ssu-ma
Piaos] original note says, They had no fixed number. [There were]
gentlemen-in-attendance for all the offices (] [ ranking at] equivalent
to 400 piculs. [ Ssu-ma Piaos ] original note says, They had no fixed
number.' [There were] gentlemen-of-the-palace for all the offices (
) [ranking at) equivalent to 300 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says,
They had no fixed number.
Nowhere is there any explanation for the term , which we have

translated as the five offices {or all the offices}. Consequently its
meaning is uncertain. It may denote the five ministers and their ministries
in the Chou court (LCCS Legges trans. I.110 = Couvreurs trans.
I.89), all the offices, the five elements, the five great powers: Heaven,
Earth, the gods, the people, and living creatures, or the five senses. We
have taken it here in the second sense, as denoting gentlemen of the
court able to serve in any of the offices of the bureaucracy.

The marshal of the palace-gentlemen on the left controlled a second of

the three offices of gentlemen. HHs M.25.4b-5a says, [There was] a
marshal of the palace-gentlemen on the left, [ranking at] equivalent to
2000 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, He had charge of the
gentlemen in the office on the left (). His palace-gentlemen [ranked at]
equivalent to 600 piculs. His gentlemen-of-the-palace [ranked at]
equivalent to 300 piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, For all of
them there was no fixed number.

The marshal of the palace-gentlemen on the right controlled the third of

the three offices of gentlemen. HHs M.25.5a says, [There was] a marshal
of the palace-gentlemen on the right, [ranking at] equivalent to 2000 piculs.
[Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says He had charge of the gentlemen in the
office on the right ().' His palace-gentlemen [ranked at] equivalent to
600 piculs. His gentlemen-in-attendance [ranked at] equivalent to 400
piculs. His gentlemen-of-the-palace [ranked at] equivalent to 300 piculs.
[Ssu-ma Piaos] original note says, They had no fixed number.
The generals of the chariots for the gentlemen-of-the-palace on the
left and on the right had charge of the gentlemen in the chariots on the left
and right of the imperial cortege. The Later Han dynasty abolished these
offices (HHs M.25.8a).

The general of the palace-gentlemen at the gates on the left and on the
right had charge of the gentlemen guarding the gates on the left and on
the right. (Hs; Han-chiu-i quoted by Yen Shih-ku in a note to Hs
19A.5b). The Later Han dynasty abolished this office. (HHs M.25.8a)


The general of the gentlemen-of-the-palace cavalrymen on the left and

one the right was also called the general of the mounted gentlemen) (Hs
54.1b). There was also a general of the chariots and cavalry for the
gentlemen-of-the-palace (Hs 69.17b). The Later Han dynasty abolished
this office (HHs 25 8a). There were also mounted gentle_men (; Hspc

HHs M.25.7a-b says, [There was] one supervisor of the internuncios (

), [ranked as] equivalent to a thousand piculs. [Ssu-ma Piaos]
original note says, He was the director of the internuncios terrace and
had charge of the internuncios. When the Son of Heaven went out, he led
the way. Anciently, military [matters! were esteemed and there was a
master of archery () to oversee and control [the contestants]. Hence
he was called a supervisor ().

Government XIV Ba, 8

The Commandant of The Guard
The commandant of the guard () was a Chin office.1 [He] had
charge of the garrison troops guarding the [Wei-yang] Palace gates. He
had an assistant.
At the beginning [of his reign] (ca. 156), Emperor Ching changed this
title to prefect of the palace grandees ().2 In the first year of the
latter [part of his reign] (143 B.C.), he restored [this title] to be
commandant of the guard.
As his subordinate officers, there were the three prefects () and
assistants () of the majors in charge of official carriages () of
the guards (),4 and of the emergency cohort ().5 The guards had
three assistants. Moreover, there were twenty-two offices of captains ()
and majors () of the garrison guard; all were subordinate to [the
commandant of the guard].
The commandants of the guard at the Chang-lo (),6 the
Chien-chang (),7 and the Kan-chan [Palaces]8 had charge of
[guarding] their palaces. Their duties were in general the same [as those
of the Wei-yang Palace guard]. [These offices] were not regularly filled.


The commandant of the guard had charge of the body of troops stationed
inside the Wei-yang Palace, where the emperor dwelt. He was one of the
nine high ministers (HHs T. 25.8b). These troops constituted a garrison

guard () and were commonly called the Southern Army (; HFHD,

I.206) to distinguish them from the Northern Army (cf. the section on the
Yen quotes the Han-chiu-i, The yamen () of the commandant of
the guard was inside the [Wei-yang] Palace, Hu Kuang says, He had
charge inside the gates of the palace portals. The guards made
themselves quarters at the foot of the wall all about [the palace]. The
Southern Army numbered several thousand men (Hs 77.1b).
The commandant of the guard had charge of the Wei-yang Palace
guard. The commandants of the guards at the other palaces were
distinguished by pre-fixing to their title the name of the palace.

The Prefect of the palace grandees was also a Chin title. It was not
however, used for the commandant of the guard, because the same
passage mentions both these officials (Sc 6.5a = Mh II.111).

The major in charge of public carriages had charge of the majors gates
and those of the [Palace] halls. By night, [his men] patrolled inside the
palace. When [from anywhere in] the empire memorials were sent up to the
throne and they arrived at the [palace] portal, or when anyone was
summoned [to the palace], the major in charge of public carriages had
general authority over them. (Han-chiu-i quoted by Yen Shi-ku) Those
who presented memorials to the throne awaited a reply at this majors
office (Hs 64A.11b). Those who presented memorials and were given
promise of an office became expectant appointees () and waited an
imperial summons at this majors office, where they received a small
honorarium (Hs 65.1b). Tung Fang-shuo was given a sack of grain and
240 cash (Hs 65.2a). Those who went in or out of the gates to the Hall or to
the Majors gates all got down from their horses or chariots. If any did not
do so, the major impeached them and they were fined four taels of gold (Ju
Shuns note to Hs 50.2a). Persons who needed to enter the Hall were
registered with the majors, and only those who were registered were
allowed to enter. HFHD, II.316, cf. also n. 6.91

The guards were conscripts, serving a year at the imperial palace. Such
guards were also established at each of the palaces, at the imperial
temples and tombs, and in transport and post service (HFHD, II.30, 309).
For an account of ancient Chinese conscript service, cf. HFHD, I.80, n. 2;
II.176-77. Within the Palace there were eight encampments, two on each
side of the palace (Yen Shi-ku, in a note to Hs 9.7a). The prefect of the
guards (), his three assistants (), and the twenty-two captains
of the encamped guard () and majors of the encamped guard (
) were the officers of this Wei-yang Palace guard.

Little concerning the emergency cohort is known. Yen glosses, L is a

multitude. Pen is the same as (to run). [This title] means that they had
the duty of running. which I interpret as meaning running to meet a
dangerous situation. This title is like that of the emergency troops (cf.
section on the army) in the departments (cf. HFHD, II.154 and n. 2.4).
There was also a l-pen in Clcs = Biot TL II.223-4 where this corps
acted as a royal escort.

The Chang-lo Palace was the one occupied by the empresses dowager,
beginning with the Empress Dowager ne L of Emperor Kao. A
commandant of the guard was first established there in the time of
Emperor Wu and this office was filled when the Palace was occupied
(Chien Ta-hsin). This palace was sometimes called the eastern palace
and the empress dowagers court was called the eastern court (),
since the Chang-lo Palace was east of the Wei-yang Palace. The latter
was called the western palace (), with the western court (Hs 52.9b).

The Chien-chang Palace was located outside and west of Chang-an. A

guard was established there in 65 B.C. (HFHD, II.231) and disestablished
in 46 B.C. (HFHD, II.321). Cf. Sfht 2.3b-5b.

The Kan-chan Palace was located in the county of Yun yang ()

northwest of the present San-Yan (), Shensi, on the Kan-chan
Mountain. It was first built in 220 B.C. Emperor Wu, during the period
140-135 B.C., enlarged it until it was 19 li in circuit, making it his favorite
summer residence. It contained the round mound for sacrificing to Heaven.

About it was the Kan chan Park, 540 li in circuit. (Sfht 2.5a-6a) cf. also
XIV Ba, 21 & n. 16)

Government XIV Ba, 9

The Grand Keeper of Equipages
The grand keeper of equipages ()1 was a Chin office.
[Its occupant] had charge of the [imperial] equipages and horses. He had
two assistants (). Among his subordinate offices there were the three
prefects () of the Great Stables),2 of the Wei-yang [Palace Stables] (
[])3, and of the household mares ().4 Each of them had five
assistants and one commandant (). There were also the four prefects
and assistants of the Storehouse for [Imperial] Equipages (),5 of the
Imperial Chariot [Stables] (), of the [stable for] Riding Horses (),
and of the [stables for] Fine Horses (). There were also the five
superintendents (), chiefs (), and assistants for the [Stables for] Tall
Horses (), the [Stable for] Training Colts (), the To-chan [(
) Palace Stables], [ The Stables for] Wild Horses (), and the
Cheng-hua [() Stables]. There were also six Superintendents of
Herds () and Prefects of Pastures () in the frontier provinces each
of whom had three assistants. There were also the prefects and
assistants for herding camels () and the flinty-hoofed [( )
horses].15 All were subordinate to [the grand keeper of equipages].
The palace keeper of equipages () had charge of the
carriages and horses of the empress dowager. [This office] was not always
filled. In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104) of Emperor Wu, the title
[of the office of] household mares was changed to [that of) the mare milker
() and for the first time the lmperial Chariot Stables ()was
Hs 19A.6b-7a


According to Ying Shao, during the time of Chou there already existed an
office of the same name. He was the chief of all the royal domestics. In
early Han the grand keeper of equipages was the fourth of the nine high
ministers. The third, commandant of the guard, will be found in XV. This
ministry had charge of the rearing and use of horses. Since cavalry was
absolutely essential for defense against the greatest enemy, the
Hsiung-nu, the Han rulers considered horses highly important, both for war
and for display, taxed the people for horses and compelled them to rear
horses. Tai-pu means literally, the grand lackey. Wang Mang called it
the grand driver (). When the Emperor went out, the grand keeper of
equipages memorialized what chariots should be used, together with the
order of precedence in the imperial cortege. When the Emperor rode in his
chariot of state, the grand keeper of equipages drove (HHs T. 25, 10a).

The Grand Stables (ta-chiu ) were inside Chang-an. (Sfht 6.2b).

The Wei-yang [Polen] Stables (Wei-yang chiu ) were also inside

Chang-an (Sfht 6.2b). For this title, cf. XIV Bb, x & n. 4; Hs 97A:17b.

The household mares (chia-ma ) was probably the institution

established by Emperor Wu when he needed horses for military purposes.
By 82 B.C. he had enough horses, so he abolished the communes for
rearing mares. (cf. HFHD, II.159 [ Hs 7, 3b] & n. 4.1) A Palace for
Household Mares , which seems to have been a distributing center
for these horses, is recorded in the department of Tai-yan (Hs 28 A, l4b).
Yen Shih-ku regards chia-ma as the horses used for private purposes by
the emperor as expressed in the term chia (house) which is the opposite of
kuo (State). Shen Chin-han, however, identifies these horses with those
kept in the Cantons in the empire (Hssc 4.45b). However, this explanation
finds no positive proofs.

The chariots of state and other imperial equipment were kept at the

Storehouse for Imperial Equipages . (XIV Bb, x & n. 3; HHs T. 25.10b).


The Imperial Chariot Stables () were in Wei-yang Palace,

Chang-an. (Hspc 19A.12a. Sfht 3XX.)

The Stable for Riding Horses () was located outside the city-wall of
Chang-an (Sfht 6.2b ) .

Fu Chieh-tzu, during 80-75 B.C., was superintendent of the stable for

Fine Horses (Hs

Clcs 33.4b = Biot, TL II.261 declares, A horse eight feet or more [tall] is
called a dragon, so that dragon-horse here means merely a tall
horse. Eight feet, by Han measure would be 18 hands, but the Chou foot
was shorter than the Han foot. Sixteen hands high is quite a tall horse, but
that measurement is made to the top of the withers; if in Han times horses
were measured to the top of the neck, 18 hands would be quite possible.
Shen Chin-han remarks that Hs 68.21a, Hspc: 19a [Chin Mi-ti]
states that Chin Mi-ti was made superintendent of horses and that Sfht
6:2b mentions a Ferghana Stables outside of Chang-an. He
accordingly suggests that the Ferghana Stables were possibly the Stables
for Tall Horses. (Hssc 4.46a)

Yen Shih-ku remarks, (hsien-lan) A corral is a place for rearing

horses. Hence they were called hsien (colts). We have however preferred
to take hsien here with its meaning of , to train.

Ju Shun glosses, The To-chan Stables were below the

To-chan Palace, Hs 36, 23a, indicates that the To-chuan Palace was
at Yung (cf. XIV 8, v, n. 10) and that Duke Mu of Chin (d. 621) was buried


Ju Shun glosses, The tao-tu were wild horses- The Erh-ya (EYCS
10.11b) also says, The tao-tu horses are wild horses. The Tzu-lin (by Lu
Shen IV cent.), is quoted by Hsing Ping (932-1010), They are fine horses
of the northern Ti barbarians. SHc 8B.45b has, however, mythologized
them, In the Northern Sea [Lake Baikal] there are animals, in shape like
horses. Their name is tao-tu, and Hs Kuang, in a note to Sc 50.1b says,
They (the tao-tu) are like horses, but dark grey . Cf. also W. Eberhard,
Lokalkulturen in Alten China, p. 235. Sfht 6.2b says, The Stables for Wild
Horses were all outside the city-wall of Chang-an.

The Cheng-hua Stables were in the Chang-lo Palace (Sfht 6.2b).

Shen Chin-han quotes Hki as stating that the Cheng-hua and Tao-tu
Stable each kept 10, 000 horses.

The term Superintendent of Herds, (mu-shih ) comes from Clcs

33.4a=Biot TL II, 260; Hki A.14a (quoted by Yen Shih-ku) says, The
various pastures of the Superintendent of Herds, which were at 36
localities, were separately established at the western and northern
boundaries [of the country], where there were reared 300,000 head of
horses. HHs M.25.11a declares that they had been located in the six
departments of Ho-hsi (present Ning-hsia and Kansu). Shen Chin-han
locates 5 pastures in the department of Pei-ti and one in that of Hsi-ho
(Hssc 4.46b; cf. also HFHD,, II.505, n. 2. 8).

Ying Shao says to is to-to () or camel. So Yen Shih-ku says that

mu-to meant to breed camels. He also declares that kun-ti was the name
of a kind of fine horses. Shen Chin-han rejects Yens explanation that kun
was the name of an animal. According to him, the Kun-ti stable already
existed in Chin times (Hssc 4.47a). Erh-ya ch. 19 (EYCS 10.11b) says,
The hoofs of the kun [or a ] are flinty and are good at climbing
declivities. Shen Chin-han cites Kuo Po (276-324), In Chin times there
was a kun flinty hoofed horse pasture . (Hspc 19A.12b)

Ju Shun glosses, They had charge of mares that give milk. They made
double bags of leather which. would hold several tou to contain the mares
milk. Tung is to take from [the mares], nipples above [the bag], hence

the office was named the mare milker . Hs 22.29b states the imperial
chancellor, Kung Kuang memorialized that the office of music should be
reduced by seventy-two persons to prepare the wine from milking mares
for the grand provisioner. At present in Liang Province (present southern
Shensi) kumyss is likewise called mares wine .

Government XIV Ba, 10

The Commandant of Justice
The Commandantship of Justice () was a Chin office.1 [Its
occupant] had charge of corporal and other punishments. There was a
[Commandant of Justices] Judge ([] ) and a junior and senior
superintendent [to the commandant of justice ()] all of whom
ranked at a thousand piculs.
In the sixth year of the middle part of Emperor Chings [reign] (144
B.C.), [the Emperor] changed the title [of the commandant of justice] to be
the grand judge (), and in the fourth year of [the period] Chien-yan
(137 B.C.) of Emperor Wu it was restored to commandant of justice. In the
third year of [the period] Ti-chieh (67 B.C.) of Emperor Hsan for the first
time there was established the junior and senior [commandant of justices]
Referee (), both ranking at 600 piculs. In the second year of
Yan-shou of Emperor Ai [the title] again became the grand judge. Wang
Mang changed it, calling it the chief judge ( tso-shih).
Hs 19A.7a-b


The commandant of justice was the fifth of the nine high ministers
(XIV Bb, xi; HHs T. 25.11a). His office served as a high court. When a
noble, a minister or other official or member of the imperial court was
accused of crime, usually in a memorial to the throne, the memorial was
referred to the commandant of justice. He investigated the case and
memorialized the throne, setting forth the facts and recommending a
sentence. The throne then approved or disapproved, or sometimes
changed the sentence. (Hs Cases in which common people were
involved were decided by the officials of the local county or march. If they

were unable to decide such a case, they referred to it to the departmental

governor or chancellor of a kingdom, who replied, stating under what
category the crime should be classified. If this official was unable to decide
the case, he referred it to the commandant of justice, who classified the
crime. When the latter was unable to decide the case, he reported it to the
throne, citing similar cases and the law, so that the emperor could decide.
(HHs T. 25, llb) Commoners were punished at their own districts, while
officials who had committed crimes were sent to the prisons in Chang-an,
where the commandant of justices office served as a court of first instance
for them. (Hs 23.12b) After the theory of the five elements and their
significance for the calendar became popular, capital punishments were
carried out only in the three winter months of the year. (Hs 90.8b, 17b) In
the spring, messengers were often sent to travel about the empire, who
were to invite persons to report cases of injustice done to them. (Hs
76.19a) The standard measures and weights were kept by the
commandant of justice. (Hs 21.10a) If the commandant of justice was
charged with a crime, he was judged by another official. (HHs T. 1.22a,
passage quoted from Hsieh Jungs [d. 282] History) If he purposely set free
persons who had committed capital crimes, he was executed. (HFHD,
II.158 = Hs 7.3b)
Before Han times, the title of commandant of justice (ting-wei) seems
to have been used only in the state of Chin, which stressed military
matters. In Chin the similar official was entitled the judge (li) and in Chi
he was entitled the grand judge (ta-li ). In Chu he was entitled the
ting-li (Chou Shou-chang). The changes in the title of this office
probably reflect the influence of these regional titles.
The commandant of justices judge , superintendents and
referees reflect the increase in judicial work and the necessity of having
in this office trained persons who would be able to decide legal cases

Cheng Hsan (121-200), quoted by Shen Chin-han, explains the Judge

() as the chief assistant of the Commandant of Justice (Hssc 4.48b).
This view is confirmed by Tu Yu who quotes several instances of the
appointment of a Commandant of Justices Judge (Tung tien 25.152a and

note). For details concerning the Left and Right Superintendent and the
Referee see Tung tien 25.152b and Hssc 4.48b. That Chavannes
considers the Judge to be the highest official in the office of the
Commandant of Justice (Chavannes Mh II, 518) shows that he has not
understood the institution correctly.

Government XIV Ba, 11

The Minister of Reception or the Grand Herald
The directorship of guests () was a Chin office. [Its occupant]
had charge of the lords and the Man () and I ()1 who returned to their
[proper] fealty. He had an assistant (). In the middle of the sixth year
(144 B.C.) of Emperor Ching [the title was] grand usher (), and in
the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.) of Emperor Wu it was
changed to the Grand Ceremonial Announcer ().3
As his subordinate offices there were the three prefects ()and
assistants () [of the office of] the usher (hsing-jen ) of the office for
Interpreters (), and [the office for] the fresh fire (pieh-huo ),
together with the chiefs and assistants for the lodges at the imperial capital
for the provinces (chn-ti ).7
In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.) of Emperor Wu,
the title of the usher was changed to the chief grand usher and for the first
time the [office for] the fresh fire was established. In 9 A.D. Wang Mang
changed the grand ceremonial announcer to the director of music
(tien-yeh ). At first the lodges at the imperial capital for the provinces
and kingdoms were subordinate to the privy treasurer(), later they
were made subordinate to the commandant of the capital () and finally
they were made subordinate to the grand ceremonial announcer.
Hs I9A.7b


The Man were barbarians who lived at that time in modern Szechwan,
Hupei, and Hunan. The I included the barbarian peoples who lived at that

time in present Yun-nan, Kuei-chou, etc. For details, see Sc 116; Hs 95;
and HHs 86. According to Y Shih-nan, this office was also in charge of
affairs concerning the northern barbarians.

Returned to their proper fealty (kuei-yi ) means surrendered to the

Chinese. The Son of Heaven was considered to be the proper lord of all
under heaven.

Ying Shao interprets the term ta-hung-lu as meaning with loud voice to
announce the order of the ceremonies performed in the ancestral temples
or on the occasion of receiving guests. Wei Chao, quoted by Wang
Hsien-chien, says that the word hung () means great and the word lu
() means to arrange the order. It means that the official was to
announce the great ceremony to the guests (Ptsc 54.9a).
The grand herald () was the sixth of the nine high ministers.
He had charge of court ceremonials, hence was naturally in charge of
receiving barbarian princes who came to pay court to the Chinese emperor
and of their enfeoffment, of enfeoffments of Chinese kings and nobles, the
order of precedence in court ceremonies, the ceremonies at the worship of
Heaven and Earth, the investiture and funeral ceremonies for kings, and
the control and government of the nobles. When the officials from the
departments and kingdoms came to present their annual reports, these
officials were under the charge of the grand herald, hence his
subordinates had charge of the lodges at the capital for these officials. He
also had charge of the interpreters for various languages. (Hktw; Ptsc
54.9b; Tung tien 26.153a; CYHs 5.8b)
The changes in the title of this minister were probably brought about
by his increasing importance as the nobility became larger in number and
as relations with foreign tribes became more important, also because of
the desire to distinguish the imperial minister from those in kingly courts (cf.
XIV Ba, xxvii & n. 26).

The usher for grand usher had charge of governing the

marquises. When an heir to a marquisate was to be installed, he had

charge of the ceremony (Hs 73.5b) and when marquises died, he

memorialized to the throne their posthumous names and eulogies. When
they were installed, he memorialized to the throne their charters of
appointment (HFHD, I.317-8, Hs 5.5a).

The office for interpreting had charge of foreigners who came to the
imperial court and of interpreting for them. Originally there was a prefect of
the nine interpreters () subordinate to the director of subordinate
states (XIV B, xvii, & n. 4), which bureau was abolished and its duties given
to the office of the grand herald in 28 B.C.

The office for the fresh fire had charge of lighting a fresh fire for the
state five times a year, by the use of the fire drill. In Han times a concave
mirror was also used for this purpose, but I find no evidence for its use in
this ceremony. This practice is mentioned in Analects XVII, xxi, 3, The
changings of the fire by means of the fire-drill are completed in a year. Ma
Jung (79-166 A.D.) comments (Lycc 17.5a), In the spring, [this official]
takes fire of elm and willow [wood], in the summer he takes fire of jujube
and apricot [wood], in the last month of {summer} he takes fire of mulberry
and silkworm thorn [wood], in the autumn he takes fire of Chinese oak and
yu oak, and in the winter he takes fire of Chinese yellow berry and
Dalbergia hupneana. In the course of one year, each time he bores out fire
from a different wood, hence it says, he changes the fire.
The Chou-Ii has a director for making fire (ssu-kuan [Clcs
30.5b-6a = Biot TL II, 195-6]), The director for making fire has charge of
the governmental ordinances for the use of fire. At the four seasons, he
changes the countrys fire, in order to save [the country] from the
banefulnesses of the times. In the last month of spring he takes the fire
outdoors and the common people all follow his [example]. In the last month
of autumn he takes the fire indoors, and the common people do likewise.
At the proper season, he sets forth the ordinances for fire [being set to the
weeds]. Whenever there is a sacrifice, he sacrifices to the originatress of
fire. Whenever in the state a fire is started by burning the weeds in the
wastes, he punishes the perpetrators.
Ju Shun quotes the Hki as listing a prefect for the prison of [the

office of] fresh fire, whose office has charge of matters concerning making
and changing the fire.

At the imperial capital there were lodges for the assistant governors of
provinces and chief clerks of kingdoms when they came to present the
yearly accounts. The various kingdoms maintained lodges in the capital for
the use of the kings when they came to the imperial capital to pay court.
These lodges were called ti . CF. HFHD, I.227 (= Hs 4.3b) & n. 1.

Government XIV BA, 12

The Superintendent of the Imperial House
The superintendentship of the imperial house () was a Chin
office. [Its occupant] had charge of [the imperial] relatives and
dependents.1 He had an assistant (). In the fourth year of A.D. [the
period] Yan-shih (4/5 A.D.) of Emperor Ping [the title was] changed to
supervisor of the imperial house ()
As subordinate offices there were the prefect and assistant of the
chief director of works() and the chief and assistant of the capital
office of the interior (nei-kuan ).4 The household stewards (chia-ling
) and guards () of the various princesses [residences) were all
also subordinate [to this ministry].5
Wang Mang united these offices with those under the arranger of the
ancestral temples ().
At first the capital office of the interior was subordinate to the privy
treasurer (). Later it was made subordinate to the [chief commandant]
in charge of noble ranks (), and finally it was made subordinate to the
superintendent of the imperial house.
Hs 19A.8a


The superintendent of the imperial house was the seventh of the

nine high ministers. He had charge of the imperial relatives on the paternal
side and kept a genealogical register of them. Outside of those who were

kings, marquises and officials, these members of the Liu house were
considered common people. Being commoners, they were ruled, like other
commoners, by the local officials appointed by the central government,
especially the prefects, chiefs, and governors. Yearly, when the
departments and kingdoms sent their reports to the central government,
they reported for the genealogical lists, the names of members of the
imperial house. If any of these members had committed a crime requiring
more than a minor punishment, the local officials were required to report
the circumstances to the superintendent of the imperial house and secure
the imperial permission before the sentence could be carried out (A.D. 1,
Hs 12.3a; XIV Bb, xiii; HHs T.
After A.D. 5, membership in the imperial house was confined to those
descended from the Grand Emperor, Emperor Kaos father (Hs 12, 8a). By
A.D. 5, there were more than 100,000 members of that house (Ibid.).
Members who committed crimes (how serious a crime is not specified) were
dropped from membership in the imperial clan (Hs 12.3a). After a certain
number of generations, distantly related persons also ceased to be
considered members of the imperial clan, but it is nowhere stated just what
degree of relationship was necessary. (HFHD, II.216 = Hs 8.7b; Hs 12.3a).
Possibly the enactment of A.D. 5 established permanent membership in
the imperial house for all and only those descended from the Grand
Emperor, so that the dropping of those who were distantly related was
ended at this time.
The superintendent of the imperial house was always a member of
that house himself. He established the order of precedence among
members of this clan. He was ranked at fully 2000 piculs. (HHs T. 26, la).

The change in this title was made by Wang Mang, for reasons similar to
those for his other changes.

The chief director of works according to the code, had charge of

water-[works] and of criminals [doing forced labor]. (Ju Shun). If members
of the imperial house committed crimes, he arrested and punished them
(Hs 45.12b). Imperial relatives on the distaff side and important courtiers
were likewise imprisoned by him (Hs 52.11b ). He had a prison (Hs


The capital office of the interior had charge of the princesses. There
were imperial princesses who were daughters of the emperor, and
royal princesses , who were daughters of vassal kings. This office
had a prison (Hs 65.7b, 8a).
The standards of {measure} were preserved in this office (Hspc

These stewards ranked at 600 piculs (HHs T. 26.1b).

Cf. The text on the Grand Minister of Ceremonies and note 22.

Government XIV Ba, 13

The Minister of Agriculture
The clerk of the capital for supplies ()1 was a Chin office. [Its
occupant] had charge of grain and goods).2 He had two assistants ().3 In
the first year of the latter [part of his reign] (143 B.C.), Emperor Ching
changed his title to the grand prefect of agriculture (). In the first
year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.) of Emperor Wu [the title was]
changed to grand minister of agriculture (ta-ssu-nung ).
As subordinate offices there were the five prefects and assistants of
the Great Granary (),5 the office of Price Adjustment and
Transportation (),6 the office of price equalization and standardization
(), the imperial treasury (), and the sacred field (), and the
two chiefs () and assistants of the office of economic control () and
the iron market (). The chiefs and assistants in the sixty-five offices
of the various granaries (), superintendents of agriculture (), and
the directors of the waters () in the provinces and kingdoms were
moreover all subordinate to [this ministry]. The chief commandant for grain
() was [one of] Emperor Wus military offices, and was not
regularly established.
Wang Mang changed the grand minister of agriculture to be the
Hsi-and-Ho (). Later he changed [this title] to be the communicator (
Originally the office of economic control was subordinate to the the
privy treasurer (). Later it was made subordinate to the chief
commandant in charge of noble ranks (). Finally it was made
subordinate to the grand minister of agriculture.
Hs 19A.8a-b


The secretary of the interior for supplies later temporarily

entitled, the grand prefect of agriculture and finally called the grand
minister of agriculture was the eighth of the nine high ministers.
Since the government revenue was derived largely from the land tax, it is
natural that the minister most concerned with financial matters should be
given this name. This ministry dealt with public moneys; the imperial private
income was disbursed by the privy treasurer (cf. following section).
The Secretary of the Interior for supplies, or the grand minister of
agriculture as it was later called, was the Ministry of Agriculture (or finance)
of both Chin and Han. Shen Chin-han regards the ta ssu tien () in
the Kuan-tzu () and the tai fu () in the Chou kuan as the
forerunners of this ministry (Hssc 4.52b). The ta ssu tien is reported to be
an official in charge of the promotion of land cultivation and the storage of
grain (Kt 8.18b). The tai fu is described as an official in charge of the
collection of tributes and taxes (Clcs 6.7b). As Shen Chin-han states, both
the officials above mentioned were similar to the grand minister of
agriculture of Han (Hssc 4.52b).

The word huo () had eventually acquired the meaning commodity.

The original connotation of the word is, however, different. Hs Shen,
author of the Han dictionary, the Shuo-wen Chieh-tzu (100 A.D.), takes
huo as identical with wealth (Swctc 6.29) and Pan Ku himself says Huo
means linen and silk cloth which can be used for clothing, and gold, knife
[money], tortoise and sea shells, through which profits were distributed
and exchanges were effected between surplus and shortage. (Hs
Thus the word originally designated wealth, particularly a certain type of
wealth which could be used as means of exchange. Chin replaced the old
variegated type of money by a simplified metal currency, but the old was
certainly still remembered. In the phrase the second character
obviously was chosen to symbolize the non-agricultural side of economics
in general and the world of exchange in particular as contrasted with

agriculture (Hs; see the economic sections of this work).


The two assistants to the grand minister of agriculture had charge of the
government monopoly of iron and salt production and manufacture. This
business was monopolized by the Han government in 110 B.C., at the
suggestion of Sang Hung-yang, who proposed the establishment of
several dozen assistants for the regional divisions of the empire ()
to have charge of this business in the departments and kingdoms (Hs
24B.17a-b), and in 86 B.C., thirteen such divisional assistants were
appointed, one for each of the thirteen provinces of the empire. They were
to manage the salt and iron monopolies and the tax payments and
nominally to encourage agriculture and sericulture (Hs 12.4a.).
In the Former Han empire, there were 35 offices for salt ()
mentioned in Hs ch. 28, and 46 offices for iron () also mentioned in
that list. In 98 B.C. alcoholic liquors were also monopolized by the
government, but in 81 B.C., upon the complaint of the people against
these monopolies, this latter monopoly was given up and a tax imposed
upon those who manufactured and sold liquor.

These changes in the title seem to have been mostly for literary purposes.
Since the last title was maintained for more than half the Former Han and
the whole of the Later Han period, it is generally used for this office.

The Great Granary was built by Hsiao Ho [in 200 B.C.] and was
outside the city of Chang-an, to the southeast. It had 20 columns.
Emperors Wen and Ching economized [by doing away with its use]. The
grain in the Great Granary was red and spoiled , and could not be
eaten, probably because there were no famines in Kuan-chung for two
centuries. (Sfht 6.2b)
The prefect and assistant at the Great Granary received the grain
transported to the capital from the departments and kingdoms as taxes
(HHs T. 26, 2a). At one time 4,000,000 hu of grain were transported to
Chang-an in this manner, for which purpose 60,000 conscripts were used.
(Hs 24A.13b, 17a)

The office of price adjustment and transportation () was an institution

whereby the Former Han government speculated in goods, with the object
of preventing undue rises of prices. It was established in 115 B.C. (Mh III,
529, n. 3). Meng Kang glosses, The office of Price Adjustment and
Transportation (chn-shu) means that those things which ought to have
been transported (shu) to the government offices were ordered
transported (shu) [from] the regions which were rich in them in order to
equalize the prices at that time at the places where they had been. The
government offices changed them to another place and sold them. For
those who had to transport them it was convenient and for the government
it was profitable. There were such offices in the departments of Ho-tong
(Hs 89.4b) and Chien-sheng (Hs 28A.27b) and probably elsewhere. This
institution was suggested by Sang Hung-yang among his other economic
measures. Sc 30.18b-19a =Mh III, 597-98 = Hs 24B.17a-b states,
Because each of the various government offices made their own
purchases, competing with each other, goods rose in price, and because,
when the taxes [in goods] from the empire were transported [to the capital] ,
they did not equal the cost of transportation, Sang Hung-yang hence
begged [the throne that he might] establish several tens of assistants to
the grand minister of agriculture for the regional divisions [of the empire]
(ta-nung pu-cheng ), who should be placed in the regional
divisions [of the empire] to have charge of setting up, in most of the
counties of the departments and kingdoms, offices of price adjustment and
transportation (chn-shu) and for the salt and iron [government
monopolies], and should order that in distant quarters [of the empire]
whenever goods of that place became expensive, so that merchants would
[normally] transport and sell them, [in those regions, such goods should
elsewhere] be taken as taxes and should be abundantly transported [ to
regions where they are expensive]. This institution was objected to at the
discussion in 81 B.C. (Ytl 1.4b-5a = E.M.Gale, trans. Discourses on Salt
and Iron, p. 9-112).
There was also an office of price adjustment and transportation
subordinate to to the chief commandant of waters and parks (Hs 19A.10b).

The office of price equalization and standards was also established

at the suggestion of Sang Hung-yang for the purpose of speculating in

goods. It was established in 110 B.C. (Mh III, 538, n. 1). The difference
between this office and that of Price, Adjustment and Transportation
(chn-shu) was that the latter was established in the provinces, while the
former was established at the capital. The reason it was established is that
when the taxes in goods were transported to the capital, they did not equal
the cost of transportation. Ssu-ma Chien used the phrase ping-chn as
the title of his treatise on the economic failures of the Han government (Sc
ch. 30, trans. in Mh III, 538-604). The passage translated in the preceding
note (Sc 30, 19a = Mh III, 598 = Hs 24B, 17a, b) continues, [Sang
Hung-yang also begged the throne] to establish an office of price
equalization and standards at the imperial capital, in order that the capital
might receive what was transported from a distance in the whole empire.
[He asked that the throne might] cause the artisans offices (kung-kuan
) [in the various provinces and counties] to make carts and various
[kinds of] containers, all of which should be under the orders and in the
possession of the grand [prefect of] agriculture. The various offices of the
grand [prefect] of agriculture should buy up all the goods in the whole
empirewhen they are expensive, [these offices] should buy them. In this
way, the rich peddlars and great merchants will have no way of making
great profits, so that they will return to the fundamental [occupation,
farming] and all things will not be able to rise [in price] , so that [the
government] will control [the prices of all articles in the country. The name
[of this institution is the office of price] equalization and standardization.
The Son of Heaven considered that [Sang Hung-yang was right and
permitted it [to be done. ] In Ytl 1.4b-5a = Gales trans. pp. 9-11, it is
however said that when the government cornered goods, prices soared
and the officials permitted wicked powerful persons and wealthy peddlers
to store up goods at low prices and sell them at high prices, so that prices
were not equalized.

The imperial treasury seems to have been the place where the
money collected as taxes was stored just as the Great Granary was where
the tax grain was stored (Hs 24.6b). Huan Tans (ca. 40 B.C. -ca. A.D. 29)
Hl, 23b, quoted from Tpyl 627.8a says , From the time that the Han
[dynasty] was established the taxes from the people in one year amounted
to more than 4,000,000,000 [cash]. The salaries of officials used up half of
that. The remaining 2,000,000,000 [cash] were stored in the imperial
treasury and became the forbidden [imperial private] money. The gardens
and lands which were cared for by the privy treasurer produced

8,300,000,000 [cash], which was used for the expenses of the palace and
for [imperial] rewards and grants.

The sacred field was the ritual field in which the emperor opened the
agricultural season by himself turning several furrows. Cf. HFHD, I. ch. iv,
app. ii, pp. 281-83.

The office of economic control , according to Ju Shun, had charge

of the office of Price Adjustment and Transportation (chn-shu). What it
monopolized (kuan) was [the manufacture of] salt and iron and the
monopoly on fermented liquors. Chin Shao, however, glosses, He was
chief of the office for [making] the bamboo sticks (chu chien kan )
for arrows. The office of tax equalization had a prefect. Both of these
commentators seem to be guessing. Yen disapproves of Chin Shaos
explanation, but Chin Shao has a sound argument in rebutting Ju Shuns
statement that this office had control of the office of Price Adjustment and
Transportation (chn-shu).The monopolies of salt and iron were too
important to be under a mere chief; they were moreover, directly under the
assistant grand ministers of agriculture. This office may then have
controlled the government monopoly of fermented drinks, which lasted
only a few years, or it may have merely sold liquor, like the iron market
98-81 B.C.
The translation, office of economic control is then much too broad
for this minor office. Dubs suggests office of the monopoly.

We are not told what were the functions of the iron market. Since it was
given merely a chief (chang) and not a prefect (ling), it could not have
been the controlling office for the government iron monopoly. That
monopoly was moreover controlled by an assistant grand minister of
agriculture. In all probability, this iron market was merely a place where the
government sold the iron articles produced in the offices for iron
(tieh-kuan), of which three were not far away: at Cheng in the capital
department, at Hsia-yang in Tso-ping-yi and at Yung in Yu-fu-feng. Cheng
was north of the present Hua in east central Shensi, Hsia-yang
was 20 li south of Han-cheng in eastern Shensi. For Yung, cf. XIV B, v,

n. 10.

The departments and kingdoms and counties had their own granaries
where grain was stored against time of famine. Cf. Sc 10.13a; Hs 76.13b.

In any department or county ... which had much in the way of water or
lakes together with profits from fishing there was established an office for
water (shui-kuan) to have charge of tranquilizing the water and of
collecting the taxes from fishing. (HHs T.28, l0a) These offices for water in
the Later Han period almost surely had the same functions as the directors
of the waters in the Former Han.

Government XIV Ba, 14

The Privy Treasury
The privy treasurership () was a Chin office. [Its occupant] had
charge of the revenues from the mountains, seas, lakes, and marshes, for
the making of contributions for [the emperors use] and the care of [the
emperor]. He had six assistants ().
As his subordinates there were the prefects (ling ) and assistants
of the sixteen2 offices of the masters of writing (shang-shu ),3
credentials and verges (),4 the grand physician (),5 the grand
provisioner (),6 the office of liquors (tang-kuan ),7 the office for
selecting grain (tao-kuan ), the bureau of music (Yeh-fu ), the
jo-lu (),10 the compleat workshop (kao-kung shih ),11 the
bird-shooting aides (),12 the convict barracks (ch-shih ),13 the
Kan-chan [Palace] convict barracks ()14 the junior and senior
director of works (), the Eastern Weaving [Chamber] (),
the Western Weaving [Chamber] (),17 and the artisans of the eastern
enclosure (tung-yan-chiang ).18 There were also the three chiefs
()and assistants of the imperial kitchen (pao-jen ),l9 the director of
the waters (tu-shui ), and the office for equalization (chn-kuan
). There were also the superintendents of the ten ponds in the
Shang-lin [Park] ().22 There were also the prefects and
assistants of the eight23 offices of the internuncio of the Palace Scribe (
),24 the Yellow Gate(),25 the palace parks (),26 the imperial
manufactory (shang-fang ), the imperial wardrobe ( ), the
Long Lanes (), the valets ( ). and the eunuchs ( ). The
various supervisors ( ), chiefs of offices ( ) and palace attendants
within the Yellow Gate (chung-huang-men ) were also subordinate
to [the privy treasurer] .
In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.) of Emperor Wu, he
changed the title of the complete workshop to be the complete workman

(kao-kung ), of the bird-shooting aides to be the sharp-shooters

(tzu-fei ), of the convict barracks to be the protective enclosure
(pao-kung ), of the Kan-chan Palace convict barracks to be the Kun
Tower (Kun-tai ), and of the Long Lane to be the Lateral Courts (
[The office of] sharpshooters had charge of shooting [birds with
fowling] arrows to which were attached long threads [for retrieving] ( ).
They had nine assistant [prefects] and two commandants (wei ). [The
office of] grand provisioner had seven assistant [prefects]. [The office of]
Kun Tower had five assistant [prefects]. The bureau of music had three
assistant [prefects]. [The office of] eunuchs had seven assistant [prefects].
[The office of] palace parks had five assistant [prefects and two
In the fourth year of [the period] Chien-shih (29 B.C.) of Emperor
Cheng [the title of] prefect of the internuncio of the palace scribe was
changed to prefect of the palace internuncios ()32 and for the first
time established a regular number of five masters of writing () with four
assistants.33 In the first year of [the period] Ho-ping (28 B.C.), the Eastern
Weaving Chamber was abolished and the title of the Western Weaving
Chamber changed to the Weaving Chamber (). In the second year of
[the period] Sui-ho (9 B.C.)of Emperor Ai, the bureau of music was
abolished. Wang Mang (7 B.C.) changed [the title of the] privy treasurer to
the provider of works ()
Hs 19A.8b-9b


The privy treasurer , had charge of the imperial privy purse and of
providing the imperial robes, personal articles, food, presents and grants
made by the emperor, the upkeep of the imperial palaces, the eunuchs,
and other matters concerning the imperial person. The money in the privy
treasury was called the forbidden [imperial private] money (chin-chien

). cf. below section on Privy Treasury for Later Han; HHs M. 26.12a.) In
the time of Emperor Yan (4833 B.C.) there were 4,000,000,000 cash in
the imperial treasury (tu-nei ), 2,500,000,000 cash with the directors
of the waters () and 1,800,000,000 cash in the privy treasury. (Hs
According to Ying Shao, the word means or small. Thus the
shao fu might be called the Small Treasury. Its difference from the Grand
Minister of Agriculture lies in the fact, as Yen Shih-ku says, that the Grand
Minister of Agriculture was to supply the needs of the army and the state
while the Privy Treasury was to provide for the Emperor.
In Ying Shaos words, the needs of the state were the large
expenses, which must be financed by the Minister of Agriculture while the
house-keeping of the emperor was the small expenses which must be
met with by the Privy Treasury. (Quoted by Yu Shih-nan, Ptsc 54.5a)
The distinction between the Grand Minister of Agriculture and the
Privy Treasury was first mentioned by Ssu-ma Chien (Sc 30.1b-2a) and
later repeated by Pan Ku Hs 77.15b-16a). It has also been frequently
heeded by the outstanding scholars and statesmen, such as Huan Tan,
Wei Hung, and Ying Shao, of the Later Han dynasty (Hl 23b; Han-chiu-i B.
7b; Hki A.15a-b).
These two offices were different not only in the forms of organization,
but also in their functions as tax-collector and financial supplier. S. Kato
classified the fiscal organizations of the Han into two: the Privy Treasury
() and the Chief Commandant of Waters and Parks () and the
Grand Minister of Agriculture (). The former two were the treasurers
of the emperor, while the third was that of the nation (Kato 18, 160). He
also claims that this distinction between the nations finance and that of the
emperor was characteristic for the fiscal system of the Han dynasty (I. c.).
However, S. Kato speaks of only the principle; in fact the hard and
fast line between the Grand Minister of Agriculture and the Privy Treasury
was sometimes difficult to draw. Readers who look through Section 10

{presumably a missing section of Volume 4} of this work and the relevant

materials in other sections will find that in the income as well as in
disbursement there was often ovealapping of these two offices.

The text reads twelve; Chien Ta-chao (Hspi 9.132) suggests that is
an error for , reading sixteen, which is the number of offices mentioned.
The official ed. has made this emendation.

The masters of writing were the virile imperial private secretaries,

through whose hands (in Former Han times, when eunuchs had no power
except in the reign of Emperor Yan) passed all matters of state. After the
time of Emperor Wu., this office became the intermediary between the
emperor and his court. Consequently it became highly important. Hence
there came to be an intendant of affairs of the masters of writing (ling
shang-shu shi ), who supervised the work of these imperial
private secretaries. By sifting out which memorials and documents the
emperor was to see, he controlled the imperial sources of information and
became highly powerful, often actually ruling the country. This position was
not so much an office as a position concurrently held usually by the
dominating imperial maternal relative. (Hktw I.8b-llb; Ptsc; cf. also
section on Privy Treasury for Later Han).

The office of credentials and verges had charge of credentials for

imperial envoys and messengers, the tallies used in levying and
dispatching armies (cf. Mh II, 466 Is n. 1), the imperial seals, etc. (HHs
M.26.10b) (Cf. LTEPTL 1.2a-17b & the Preface)

Shen Chin-han remarks that the office of grand physician was

originally subordinate to the grand master of ceremonies, and later
changed to be subordinate to the privy treasurer, hence is mentioned
twice. (Cf. Hspc 19A.15b; cf. :XIV Ba, 6 and note 9)

Yen glosses, The grand provisioner had charge of the imperial

food. (cf. also HHc 26.4a and Hssc 5A.4a).

The office of liquors had charge of wine, (XIV Bb, xv, & n.6; HHs
M.26.4a; Hssc 5A.4a). Yen glosses that this office had charge of cakes
and pastries , but in view of Ssu-ma Piaos explicit statement and the
meaning of this title, Yen is almost surely in error. (Cf. XIV Bb, xv, & n. 60)

The office for select grain had charge of hulling grain for the
imperial table and of preparing dried provisions for use on journeys.(XIV
Bb, xiv & n. 5, NHS, 26.2b). is used for (Wang Hsien-chien, Hspc

The bureau of music charge of music for banquets, etc. It possessed

829 musicians, etc. Emperor Ai did not care for music, so in 7 B. C, he
ordered this bureau abolished. 388 of its musicians were then transferred
to the Grand Musician (XIV Ba, 6 and note 4; Hs 22.13a, 28a; Hs 11.2b;
Hktw 3.7b-10a).

Commentators of the Hs disagree on the interpretation of the jo-lu .

Fu Chien, Teng Chang and Meng Kang maintain that it was the name of a
jail, while Ju Shun contends that it was an office keeping military weapons
and in charge of archery (note to text and note in Hs 82.4b-5a). Different
from the two groups mentioned above, the author of the Han I Chu
advances a third interpretation that it was an office in charge of a jail and
at the same time manufacturing weapons. While Chien Ta-chao supports
the first explanation (Hspi 9.132), Yen Shih-ku followed the second. It
seems indeed possible that it might be a jail for high ranking officials and
courtiers and that a certain part of the manufacturing or weapons was
carried out by prisoners. Shen Chin-han apparently sided with Ju Shun
and Yen Shih-ku, but he also sees the fact that the jo-lu was also in charge
of a jail (Hssc 5A.5a; XIV Bb, 11 and note 3).

The complete workshop, in 104 B.C. called the office of complete

workmen , prepared utensils and implements (Fu Tsan). This title was
used as the title of the tract now added to the Chou-li in place of a lost
section. Cf. Biot TL, livre XL-XLIV, pp. 456-601; Clcs ch. 39-42. means
, hence our translation of this title. (Cf. XIV Bb, 10 and n. 2).


The bird-shooting aides, later entitled the sharpshooters were

expert bowmen maintained in the Shang-lin Park for the purpose of killing
ducks and geese for the imperial sacrifices. They would bag more than ten
thousand at a time. (HcI B.8a; Sfht 4.6b). The later name Tzu-fei, was
taken from the name of a brave hero in LSCC 20, 5b Wilhelms trans. p.
352. is used for . (Hspc 19B:10b; Sc 6.6a = Mh II, 111).

The convict barracks , later entitled the protective enclosure ,

seems to have been the place where were lodged the large numbers of
convicts who were working out their sentences at the imperial palace. Wei
Chin met a convict with an iron collar (a badge of servitude), at the
Kan-chan Palace convict barracks (Hs 55.1b). This place was also used
as a prison (Hs 52.9a; 54.19b), and expectant appointees were lodged
and taught there. (Hs 88.24b).

The name of the Kan-chan Palace convict barracks was later

changed to the Kun Tower . Cf. XIV Bb 15, & n. 64.

Various offices had a director of works . There was a chief director

of works (tu-ssu-kung) subordinate to the superintendent of the imperial
house. Wang Hsien-chien thinks both of these directors of works are
referred to in Hs 45.12b (Hspc 45:10b). Shen Chin-han says this was a
department in charge of convict laborers used for construction work (Hssc

The Eastern Weaving Chamber was located in the Wei-yang

Palace. In the Eastern and Western Weaving Chambers there was made
embroidery on the garments for the sacrifices in the suburbs [to Heaven
and to Earth] and in [the imperial ancestral] temples. (Ying Shao). Cf.
HFHD, II.225; Hs 72.12a; Sfht 28.

The Western Weaving Chamber was also in the Wei-yang Palace.

In 191 B.C., there was only one weaving chamber (HFHD, I.182). Later an
Eastern and a Western Weaving Chamber were established, but in 28 B.C.
the former was abolished and the other was called the Weaving Chamber

, as at first. Cf. XIV Bb xv, & n. 61.


The artisans of the Eastern enclosure made utensils and articles

[for use] within the [imperial] tombs. Note to text and Hssc 5A.6a-b)

The [imperial] kitchen had charge of butchering and cutting [up

butchered animals]. is used for . (Yen). The ancient Chinese
kitchens were located in the basement of the house where both
butchering and cooking was done. Cf. XIV Bb, xv, and n. 63.

The director of the waters, subordinate to the privy treasurer

probably had charge of the pools and preserves which were under the
control of the privy treasurer. Hs 77.12a (Hspc 77.I0b) speaks of the privy
treasurers dikes and marshes which had been made use of by the
common people in the Department of Nan, so that the privy treasurer
needed a director of waters to control such places. (Hssc 5A.6b; Wang
Hsien-chien, in Hspc 19A.16a).

The office for equalization subordinate to the privy treasurer had

probably the same functions with regard to the revenues of the privy
treasurer as the office of price adjustment and transportation (chn-shu
) and the office of price equalization and standards (ping-chn )
had for the grand minister of agriculture (Cf. XIV Ba, 13, & a. 5, 6). Shen
Chin-han says this office controlled market prices (Hssc 5A.6b-7a).

The ten ponds in the Shang-lin Park are enumerated in Sfhtsp 4.6b as
The First Pool , the Elk Pond , the Ox-head Pond , the
Wool Grass Pool , the Ground Ivy Pool , the Eastern Diked Pool
, Western Diked Pool , the Pool by the Road , the
Great Tower Pool , and the Gentlemens Pool , The Ox-Head
Pool is inside the western end of the Shang-lin Park. The Wool Grass Pool
produces wool grass, which is used to weave mats. The Western Diked
Pool and the Gentlemens Pool are both south of the ancient city-wall
inside the Shang-lin Park. The Diked [Stream] and the Gentlemens
[Stream] are the names of two streams, which hence became [the names]

of ponds. In the Ground Ivy Pool there is a coral tree, 12 feet tall with one
trunk and three large branches, on which there are 462 twigs. It was
presented by the King of Nan-yueh, Chao To. It is called the beacon-fire
tree, for at night its light constantly glows splendidly. (Cf. XIV Bb, xv, and n.

The text reads . The Official ed. has correctly emended to (eight).


Internuncio of the Palace Scribe is an office established by Emperor Wu,

when he used eunuchs for his private secretaries (previously entitled
masters of writing) instead of virile persons (HHs M.26.8a). Ssu-ma Chien
became the prefect of palace writer internuncios. The last two Chinese
words (and the last English word) in this title are usually omitted for
convenience. During the reign of Emperor Yan, this office had the same
power as that previously and later possessed by the office of the masters
of writing (cf. note 3 above). The office was sometimes called that of the
palace masters of writing (chung shang-shu ), because these
eunuchs took the place of the masters of writing. Only during the reign of
Emperor Yan did eunuchs have any substantial power in the Former Han
period. Cf. HFHD, II.294-298.

The gate of the forbidden inner apartments in the imperial palace was
called the Yellow Inner Gate (Tung Pa, in a note to HHs M.26.6a).
Within the Yellow Gate hence denoted the forbidden apartments
of the emperor and harem. It was also called the inner apartments .
The Prefect of the Yellow Gate was a eunuch and he had charge of
the eunuchs in the inner apartments. (XIV Bb, xv, & n. 16; HHs T. 26.6a)
There were however a number of attendant gentlemen at the Yellow Gate
who were not eunuchs and who were also under this prefect. They carried
messages in and out of the inner apartments and acted as ushers at the
court. (HHs T. 26.5a,b).

The Prefect of the palace parks had charge of the various ponds,
parks, gardens, and places for picnicking and amusement near the
imperial capital. He was a eunuch. (Cf. HFHD, II.381 & n. 4.2)


The prefect of the imperial manufactory had charge of the best

handicraftsmen, who made the imperial single and double-edged swords,
and various fine utensils and articles. (XIV Bb, xv & n.35; HHs T. 26.8a).
He was also in charge of the recipes and drugs. (Yen, Hs 25A.22b). His
workshop was in the Wei-yang Palace and had a special side-gate. The
word fang in his title denotes magical recipes; probably he made mirrors
(which were considered magical). (Cf. Mh III, 477, n. 6) He made special
articles for imperial use (Hs 76, 12a).

The imperial wardrobe had charge of the Son of Heavens

clothes. (Yen Shi-ku) Its prefect was a eunuch. He had charge of
government slavewomen who made clothes for persons in the palace, did
mending and laundering (HHs T. 26, 7a; Hssc 5A.8a). When Wang Mang
nationalized gold, he had it brought to this office (Hs 99A, 37b).

The Long Lane , later called the Lateral Courts was the
imperial harem. The various grades of imperial concubines, from the
Favorite Beauties on down, all lived in this place. Courtiers and others who
presented their daughters to the throne, sent them to this place, where
they were called Ladies of Good Family . (the title of the lowest
rank of imperial concubines). (Hs 97A.3a, Hs 98.2b) Those whom the
emperor had not seen were called Ladies Awaiting an Imperial Edict in the
Lateral Courts (the same title as expectant appointees to the
bureaucracy. HFHD, II.335). Women who were sentenced for crime and
made government slaves were sent to work in the imperial harem (Hs
74.9b; Hktw 3.12b). Government slaves were selected to serve as writers
and accountants. Those who attended upon the Palace Attendants and
persons of lower rank were called Cerulean-heads and wore cerulean
turbans. They were given to officials for their attendant officers, and
followed them into the Palace Hall. The attendants who carried orders in
the inner palace apartments were all government slave-women. Girls in
their eighth year or over were selected and dressed in green . They
were called palace maids . They were not allowed to go outside the
gates of the inner apartments. Supervisors (chien). were established for
them. The oldest one was called the Slave-woman . The Slave-woman
taught the palace maids how to serve. The masters of writing and the

palace attendants all had government slave-women, but they were not
allowed to have palace maids serving them. If [these palace maids] wished
to ransom themselves, [they paid] a thousand to ten thousand cash, and
they were dismissed and became commoners. In the offices of the
eunuchs and of the gentlemen in the Palace Halls, there were government
slave men and women. (Hcy B:4a = M. Wilbur, Slavery in China, pp.
404-5.) In the Drying House (pu-shih ), which was in the Lateral
Courts, there was a prison for empresses, important ladies and sometimes
even officers of the Imperial court. (XIV Bb, xv, & n. 25; Hs 77. 8a)

The valets had charge of intimate matters, such as laying out

under-clothing and setting up canopies for the imperial ladies. (XIV Bb, xv,
& n. 34; HHs M.26.8a; Yens quotation of Ibid. in Hs 8.2a; Hki A.19b.)

The eunuchs served in the inner apartments. In the inner

apartments were the Master of the Bonnets (shang-kuan ), the Master
of the Canopy (shang-chang ), the Master of the Robes (shang-yi
), the Master of the Mats (shang-his ), and the Master of the Food
(shang shi ). (Ying Shaos note to Hs 2.2b). The latter was
subordinate to the grand provisioner, and served the imperial food in
golden utensils (Hcy A.2a). When the Emperor wished to have intimate
contact with a courtier, he had the courtier await appointment in the
eunuchs office (Hs 54.22b; Hs 65.8b).

The palace internuncios were virile persons. This office was

established when Emperor Cheng did away with the eunuch palace scribe
internuncios (cf. n. 24) and substituted virile persons. (Wang Hsien-chien;
HFHD, II.383).
According to the Original Note to HHc 26.8a, this official was a
continuation of what Chin had established. Emperor Wu used a eunuch
[for the office] and it was renamed the Prefect of the Internuncio of the
Palace Scribe (). Emperor Cheng employed a scholar,
restoring the old system. His function was to take charge of the selection of
officials and transmission of documents and other matters to the various
departments of the Masters of Writing. Hui Tung does not believe that

Chin had this office. He implies that Chin established the shang shu but
not a prefect (HHspc 24.1297) , All available evidence confirms this point.
Because the eunuch was called chung kuan (), or inner
official, offices held by eunuchs were usually prefixed with the word chung
(). This official was also called the Prefect of the Palace Scribe (
) with the word Internuncio () omitted. Hui Tung says that it was an
abbreviation (HHspc 24.1297).

According to the original commentary () to HHc 26.8b-9a, Emperor

Cheng established four Masters of Writing for the first time separating
them into four departments. The Master of Writing of the Department of
Regular Attendants () was in charge of affairs concerning the
Dukes () and High Ministers (). The Masters of Writing of the
Department for Officials ranking two-thousand piculs () were in
charge of the Two-thousand Picul [officials] of the provinces and kingdoms.
The Master of Writing of the Department of Civil Affairs () was in
charge of all matters concerning the presentation of memorials by officials.
The Master of Writing of the Department of Guests () was in
charge of affairs concerning the barbarians of foreign countries. He
bases his argument on a statement by Ying Shao according to which the
four Masters of Writing were set up by Emperor Wu, Emperor Cheng
added one more making it five. (Hki A.20b) Hui Tung declares that the
above statement by Ssu-ma Piao is wrong, and that Emperor Cheng
should be Emperor Wu. (HHspc 24.1299)
In Hs 10.5a, Pan Ku reports in the year 29 B.C., Five members of
the Masters of Writing were for the first time set up. Both Pan Ku and Ying
Shao lived earlier than Ssu-ma Piao, which fact serves to strengthen Hui
Tungs suggestion. This is perhaps the reason why Liu Chao, when
commenting on this point, quotes Wei Hung, author of the Han-chiu-i, that
five departments were established previously and the fifth department was
the San-kung () Department, which was in charge of justice according
to Wei Hung and in charge of the examination of the administration at the
end of the year according to Tsai Chih. We assume that Wei Hungs
statement refers to the organization of the office at the time of and after
Emperor Cheng. Ying Shaos statement that Emperor Cheng made it five

by adding one which was the San-kung Department (Hki A.20b and HHs
1A.13b and note) is in full agreement with our assumption.
According to Tsai Chih, quoted by Liu Chao, the Master of Writing of
the Department of Regular Attendants was in charge of affairs concerning
the Regular Attendants (), the Yellow Gate ( see note 25 above)
and the Grandee Secretary ( see section XIV Ba, 3 above). Wei Hung,
quoted by Yen Shih-ku, records that it took charge of the affairs
concerning the Imperial Chancellor ( see section XIV Ba, 1) and the
Grandee Secretary (Note to Hs 10.5a. Ying Shao records the same, cf.
note to HHs IA.13b). Liu Chao notes that it was called the Department of
Civil Service in Later Han.
Wei Hung, quoted by Liu Chao, gives a certain authority who says
that the Master of Writing of the Department for Officials ranking at
two-thousand piculs of the provinces and kingdoms was in charge of the
Provincial inspectors () as well as the two-thousand picul officials (Cf.
note to Hs 10.5a. Ying Shao records the same in a note to HHs 1A.13b).
According to Tsai Chih quoted by Liu Chao, the Master of Writing of
the Department of Civil Affairs was in charge of the construction and repair
of buildings and other things and took charge of matters concerning parks
and banditry. Wei Hung, quoted by Yen Shih-ku, states that it was in
charge of the affairs concerning the presentation of memorials by
common people (. Cf. note to HHs 1A.13b-14a).
By virtue of the growth in power of the Master of Writing, Hsiao Wang-chih
in 47 B.C. described it as the foundation of all the offices and the
controlling center of the state. (Hs 93.5a). When Shih Hsien held the
position of Prefect of the Master of Writing () in 47-33 B.C., he was
so powerful that he reported and decided every political matter, small or
big, (Hs 93.4b) and called his own position the post of controlling power.
(Hs 93.6b)

Government XIV Ba, 16

The Commandant of the Capital
The commandantship of the capital ()1 was a Chin office. [Its
occupant] had charge of patrolling the imperial capital. He had two
assistants (cheng) with captains (), majors (ssu-ma ), and
millenaries (). In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu, (104 B.C.),
Emperor Wu changed this title to that of bearer of the gilded mace (
As subordinate officials he had the four prefects (ling) with their
assistants (cheng) of the capital encampment (),3 the ssu-hu ,4
the Arsenal (), and the director of boats (). The director of boats
and the arsenal had three assistants. The capital encampment had two
commandants. Also the captains of the left, of the right, and of the center
and the lieutenant standard bearers (,), together with
the troops of the chief commandants and assistant commandants to the
eastern, western, and capital adjuncts (),8 all of whom
were subordinate to [the bearer of the gilded mace].
Originally the ssu-hu was subordinate to the privy treasurer, later he
was subordinate to the [chief commandant] controlling noble ranks, finally
he was subordinate to the commandant of the capital.
From the grand minister of ceremonies to the bearer of the gilded
mace, [these ministers] all ranked at fully two thousand piculs and their
assistants all [ranked] at one thousand piculs.

Hs 19A.9b


The commandant of the capital , after 104 B.C. entitled the bearer of
the gilded mace controlled the very large Northern Army
stationed in an encampment north of Chang-an, together with the troops
in the three capital departments outside the palaces. He had charge of
police patrols in the capital outside the palaces and took precautions
against disturbances and floods and fires. Each month he
circumambulated the palaces three times (XIV Bb, xvi; HHs T. He
controlled lawless powerful persons in the capital (Hs 90.2b, 3b) and
handled the cases of important personages (Hs 47.6b; 53.3a). When he
went out he was accompanied by 600 horsemen and 6200 footmen (Hcy,
quoted in Ptsc 54.2b [ HKDW] ), so that his chariots, horse, and
attendants thronged the highways and streets (Li Hsien, quoting a Han
work on the bureaucracy, in a note to HHs T. 27.1b).
The commandant of the capital controlled the Han standing army,
the Northern Army. Hu San-hsing however asserted that the Northern
Army was under the control of the Colonel of the Capital Encampments (Cf.
XIV B xxiv, & n. 2 for more details concerning this army), but Wang
Hsien-chien (quoted in HFHD, I.206, n. 4) has refuted this assertion. The
Colonel of the Capital Encampments is specifically said to have had
charge of the inner and outer gates of the Northern Armys encampments,
so that the capital encampment (i.e. the Northern Army) is here placed as
a subordinate to the commandant of the capital, so that the Northern Army
was plainly under that commandant. (Cf. Hktw 4, lb-3b). The name,
Northern Army, came from the fact that the Northern Portal was the main
gate of the Wei-yang Palace (Yen Shi-ku in a note to Hs 1B.10b, 11a), and
the commandant of the capital encamped outside of it, north of the Palace.
The army inside the Palace was then naturally called the Southern Army
(Cf. XIV Ba 8, n.1).
The Northern Army was quite large. In 196 B.C., Emperor Kao
mobilized 30,000 soldiers belonging to the commandant of the capital
(HFHD, I.135). In 109 B.C., when Emperor Wu needed men to build the
Tower Communicating with Heaven, Wang Wen-shu sought out those men
who had escaped doing military service with the commandant of the capital
and secured several ten thousand men (Hs 90.9b [Hspc 90.9b). It must

then have been composed chiefly of conscripts. It was control of this army
which enabled the conspirators to destroy the L clan (HFHD, I.206).

Concerning the title, bearer of the gilded mace, chih-chin-wu ,Ying

Shao glosses, Wu is to ward off. He had charge of grasping (chih) metal
(chin and leather (i.e. weapons and armor) to ward off untoward
occurrences. Yen however adds, Chin-wu is the name of a bird. He had
charge of controlling inauspicious occurrences. When the Son of Heaven
went out, his duty was to go ahead in order to ward off untoward
occurrences, hence he grasped (chih) the image of this bird. From that
came the title of his office. Tsui Paos KCC A.2a however says, A chin-wu
is a stick. It was made of bronze and washed with gold on its two ends, so it
is called a gilded wu (chin-wu). The grandee secretary and the colonel
director in charge of investigation (ssu-li hsiao-wei) were also permitted to
grasp (chih) them. The [grandee] secretary, the colonel [director of
investigation], governors of departments, chief commandants [of
departments], chiefs of counties and the like all made their wu of wood. Y
Yeh concludes that the chin-wu was merely the name of a large bronze
mace. But it may well have also had the figure of a bird (possibly a crow
[also pro. wu] which signaled the Chou victory, (Cf. Legge, Shoo-king, p.
298, CC, III, 298; also Mh II.4489, n. 2), on one end of the mace.
There was a bearer of the golden (or metal) mace in Emperor Kaos army
before 201 B.C. (Hs 16.10a [Hspc 16.22b]), so that Emperor Wu merely
revived this more ancient title.

The capital encampment was that occupied by the Northern Army (cf.
n.1). This title probably comes from the military system attributed to
Ssu-ma Jan-tsu, the famous strategist and minister of war of Duke Ching of
Chi (547-490 B.C.). Tu Yu preserves a passage from his work on military
science. According to this passage, an army during Chun-chiu and
Chan-kuo times was composed of 250 battalions, or 18,250 soldiers. Of
these soldiers, 3,750 or 75 batallions made up the center rampart ()
which was established on an area of more than 300 mou and in which the
commander-in-chief of the army stayed. The rest were divided into eight
regiments (Tung tien 148.776a-b). Thus, the chung-lei was the center of
an encampment of an army. But to what degree the Han system resembled
this is difficult to say.

Concerning the ssu-hu , we have merely Ju Shens quotation from

the Hcy, The prefects of the ssu-hus and the Director of the Waters
prisons had charge of offices [concerned with] the waters. Shen Chin-han
declares, on the other hand, that the ssu-hu was in charge of the military
market attached to a military unit. (Hssc 5A.llb). The title could, therefore,
be trans_lated something like Office in Charge of the Commissariat.

The Arsenal was located inside Chang-an, between the Chang_-lo

and Wei-yang Palaces ( Sc 71.3a, b). It stored weapons (XIV Bb, xvi & n.4,-;
HHs T. 27.1b). It was built in 200 A.D. (HFHD, I.118).

Shen Chin-han says that the Tu-chuan was the boat manufacturing
office (Hssc 5A.12a). But Ju Shun takes it as an office of water
conservancy. Because the group of officers to which the tu-chuan
belonged were all military organs, it is logical to consider Shens
interpretation as better suited to the present text.

The three captains standard-bearers of the left, the right,

and the center, [ranked at] 600 piculs. When the imperial equipage went
out, they had charge of [going] in front, to clear the road. When [the
imperial equipage] returned, they bore the pennons to the gate of the
palace, and the gate was there-upon opened. (XIV Bb, xvi, n.5; HHs T.

The chief commandants to the three adjuncts were subordinate to the

three adjuncts, (XIV Ba, 21, text and note 21), so that they must have
secured their troops from the bearer of the gilded mace, who controlled all
the troops in the Capital region outside of the palaces.

The ministers referred to were the nine high ministers (ching; cf. XIV Ba 6,
n.l), together with the bearer of the gilded mace: namely, the grand
minister of ceremonies (XIV Ba, 6), the superintendent of the imperial
household (XIV Ba, 7), the commandant of the guard (XIV Ba, 8), the grand
keeper of equipages (XIV Ba, 9) the commandant of justice (XIV Ba, 10),
the minister of reception (XIV Ba, 11). the superintendent of the imperial

house (XIV Ba, 12), the grand minister of agriculture (XIV Ba, 13), and the
privy treasurer (XIV Ba, 14). The bearer of the gilded mace was not one of
the nine high ministers, but was included among those ranking at fully
2000 piculs because of his importance as controlling the dominating army.
Officials ranking at fully two thousand piculs received, in
Later Han times, 180 hu of grain per month, i.e., 2160 hu per year (the hu
and the picul were rougHly identical, the first being a measure of capacity
and the other one of weight). Those ranking at one thousand piculs
received 80 hu of grain per month, i.e., 960 hu per year. (HHs T.28.16b).

Government XIV Ba, 16

The Grand Tutor to the Heir Apparent
The Grand tutorship to the [imperial] heir-apparent ()1 and the
junior tutor (shao-fu )2 were ancient offices. [Among] their subordinate
offices were those of the grandees at the gates of the heir-apparent (
), [his palace] bodyguard ([]) [his bodyguard (shu-tzu
)], his outriders (), and the members of his suite (she-jen ).
Hs 19A.l0a

The grand tutor to the heir-apparent was, in Former Han times,

ranked at 2000 piculs (Hs 19A.12a, b). The heir apparent treated him with
the respect and courtesy due a master (i.e., a superior). (XIV Bb, xvii; HHs
T. 27.2a). Tu Yu (735-812 ) in Tung tien 30, p. 161b said, According to
the customs of the Han and Wei periods, the [imperial] heir-apparent
performed the rites of a disciple to his two tutors (i.e. the grand tutor and
the junior tutor). When he wrote to both of them, he did not say, I order
you. His junior tutor called himself, Your subject, but the grand tutor did
not call himself a subject.

Yang Chung (f1. 76-90) memorialized the throne, saying, (HHs M.38.4b),
According to the rites and institutions when the son of the lord of men is in
his eighth year, a junior tutor is established for him to teach him writing and
accounting, in order to open up his understanding. When he is in his
fifteenth year, a grand tutor is established, to teach him the Classics, in
order to direct his will.

The grandees at the gates were ranked at 600 piculs and

their number was fixed at five. (Ying Shao.) Their duties were like those of
generals of the gentlemen in the imperial court. (XIV Bb, xix; HHs T. 27.5a)

The phrase palace bodyguard is not in the present text but only
its last two words. But Ying Shao glosses, Their fixed number was five and
they were ranked at 600 piculs, which statement corresponds to the
number and rank of the heir-apparents palace bodyguard in XIV Bb, xix,
par, 11 = HHs T. 27.5a, while Hcy B.3a says, His palace bodyguard
numbered five. Their duties were like those of the attendants within the
palace (shih-chung) [in the imperial court]. (Cf. Hs 19A.13b) They ranked
at 600 piculs. The bodyguard and members the suite numbered 400.
[Their duties] were like those of the palace gentlemen [in the imperial
court]. (Cf. XIV Ba, 7, & n. 4) Those ranked at 200 piculs had no fixed
number and might be as many as 400 persons. Ying Shaos text must
accordingly have read chung-shu-tzu, and not as the present text does,
shu-tzu. The heir-apparents palace bodyguard is mentioned in Hs
19B.17a; 68.24a; 79.7b;, 6a; 88.11b. Hence chung must have
dropped out before shu-tzu, whereupon a second shu-tzu was dropped
out as a repetition, thus producing the present text. (Chien Ta-chao, in
HSPY 9, 5b). Wang Hsien-chien approves this fine emendation, which we
accept and translate accordingly.

Cf. the passage from Hcy in n. 4.

Chang Yen glosses, The outriders had a fixed number of 16. Their rank
was the same as that of the internuncios (yeh-che) [in the imperial court].
(Cf. XIVb, B, vi, &n.4) Ju Shun adds, They ride ahead.Kuo-y [20:2b] says,
Kou-chien in person became the outrider of Fu-chai [King of Wu]. (Ju
Shun reads , which he says is probably . The present text of
theKuo-y however reads , which Wu Chao explains, He gallops
ahead in front of the horse.) When the heir-apparent went out of the
palace, the outriders went ahead on the road leading in a majestic manner
(HHs T. 27.5b).

The members of the heir-apparents suite had no fixed number.

They took turns in acting as a guard for him, like the
gentlemen-of-the-palace belonging to the three offices in the imperial
court. (Cf. XIV`, Ba, 7, & n. 4). They were ranked at 200 piculs. (HHs T.
27.4b) They were established in the Chin court (Tung tien ch. 30, p. 173


Government XIV BA, 17

The Imperial Court Architect
The Privy Treasury architectship (chiang-tso-shao-fu ) was
a Chin office. He had charge of building the palaces and [imperial]
buildings, He had two assistants and captains of the left, of the right, and
of the center ().
In the sixth year of the middle [part of the reign] of Emperor Ching
(144 BC) this title was changed to grand court architect
(chiang-tso-ta-chiang ).1
As subordinate offices he had the seven prefects and assistants of
the stoneyard (shih-ku ), of those in charge of large timbers at the
eastern enclosure (),2 and of the managers of the left, of the right,
of the front, of the rear, and of the center ().3 There were also
the chief and assistant in charge of large timbers (chu-chang ).
In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.) of Emperor Wu the
title of the [prefect] in charge of large timbers at the eastern enclosure was
changed to the timber workmen (mu-kung ). In the third year B.C. of
[the period] Yang-so (22 B.C.) of Emperor Cheng, the captain of the
center together with the five assistants of the managers of the left, of the
right, of the front, of the rear, and of the center, were abolished.
Hs 19A.l0a


The imperial court architect (), later called the grand court
architect, () was in charge of building the imperial ancestral
temples, the imperial palaces and residences, and the imperial tombs and
funerary parks. These buildings were mostly of wood; hence the emphasis
upon large timbers (HHs T. 27.6a). In the next year after an emperor
ascended the throne, the grand court architect began constructing the

emperors tomb, including the tumulus, and its park, with places for the
tombs of the empress, and imperial concubines (quoted in HHs T. 6.5a).

Shun explains as large timber .

The managers had charge of the convict workmen at the various parts
of the imperial tomb. (XIV Bb, xx, par. 2, 3 = HHs T. 27.5b)

Yen glosses, They were in charge of all the large trees . The Han
emperors planted trees along the roads (Hu Kuang quoted by Li
Hsien in a note to HHs T. 27.6a).

Government XIV BA, 18

The Supervisor of the Household of the Empress and the
Heir Apparent
The supervisorship of the household of the empress and
heir-apparent () was a Chin office. [Its occupant] had charge of the
household of the empress () and the [imperial] heir-apparent ().
He had assistants.
Among his subordinate offices there were the chiefs and
assistants[ of the offices of] the heir-apparents leader of conscripts
(shuai-keng); his household steward (chia-ling ), his charioteer
(),4 his palace patrol (),5 the leader of his guard (),6 of his
kitchen (),7 and of his stables ().8
There were also the prefects, chiefs, and their assistants of the
empresss prolonguer of autumn (), her personal treasury (),
her Long Lane (), her granary (). her stables (), .her
invocator (),14 and her office for food ()15 These various eunuch
offices were all subordinate to [the supervisor of the household of the
empress and heir-apparent).
In the third year of [the period] Hung-chia (22 B.C.), Emperor Cheng
abolished the office of the supervisor of the households of the empress
and heir-apparent and gave his duties to the grand prolonguer of autumn
The supervisor of the household of the occupant of the Chang-hsin
Palace () had charge of the palace of the empress dowager (
). In the sixth year of the middle part of his reign (144 B.C.), Emperor
Ching changed the title to the privy treasurer of the Chang-hsin Palace
(), and in the fourth year of [the period] Yan-shih, Emperor P'ing
changed this title to be the privy treasurer of the Chang-lo [Palace]
(Chang-lo shao-fu ).18


The supervisor of the household of the empress and heir-apparent

was a eunuch in Chin times and later. (XIV Bb, xviii, par 10; HHs T. 27.2a).
Ying Shao explains chan as to visit , to provide ; . Since Han
heir-apparents were appointed, some at the beginning of .a reign and
some not until a day before the emperor died, the combination of these two
offices was natural. In 22 B.C., the functions of this office were given to the
grand prolonguer of autumn (cf. n. 16). Thereafter the households of the
empress and of the heir-apparent were separately provided for.

The prefect [of the office of] leader of conscripts was ranked at
1000 piculs. He controlled the establishment in town of the [heir-apparents]
bodyguard [cf. XIV Ba,16, n.4] and the members of his suite [cf. XIV Ba, 16,
n. 7] . Hcy B.3b. Yen mistakenly understands keng to denote the watches
of the night and explains, He had charge of knowing the divisions on the
clepsydra (i.e., of reporting the time). (Cf. XIV Bb, xix, par. 2, & n.2)

The heir-apparents household steward had charge of the grain in

the granary, and the provisioning of his household. His duties were like
those of the grand minister of agriculture and the privy treasurer in the
imperial court (XIV Bb, xix, par 5; HHs T. 27, 4b). Hui Tung (HHspc 24.20a)
quotes the Mo-ling Shu (no reference), His rank was 800 piculs.

The heir-apparents charioteer controlled the heir-apparents chariots

and horses. His duties were like those of the grand keeper of equipages
(tai-pu) in the imperial court. (XIV Bb, xix, par. 8; HHs T. 27.5a)

The chief of the heir-apparents palace patrol (chung-yn )

controlled the patrol that went about this palace. Hsiao Kai (fl.
581-612) states that the second word in this title is pronounced yn. Wang
Hsien-chien {Hspc 19A.19a, 100A.5a} suggests that it should be written ,
since these two characters were interchanged and the latter is written in
HHs M.30A.7b.

The leader of the heir-apparents guard controlled the guards at the

gates of the heir-apparents quarters. (HHs T. 27.5b)


The chief of the heir-apparents kitchen probably controlled the

butchers and chefs.

The chief of the heir-apparents stables controlled his chariots and

horses. (HHs T. 27.5a) He was thus an aide to the charioteer (cf. n.4). The
heir-apparent was thus given a little court, modeled after that of the
emperor. Yen glosses that this and the preceding offices were those of the

I do not find anywhere a statement of the duties of the empresss

prolonguer of autumn (chang-chiu ). Probably he had general
supervision of the empresss entourage and his duties were taken over by
the grand prolonguer of autumn (cf. n.16). For the meaning of chang-chiu
cf. n.16.
The word chung, which precedes this title in the text, probably
denoted the empress, and is to prefixed to all these seven titles. The
empress was called the inner palace , and these two words are
prefixed to each of the empresss offices in HHs T. 27.2b-4a; XIV Bb, xviii.
There is no reference to a chung-chang-chiu in the HS, except this
passage. Hs 63, 2b speaks of the Chang-chius gates and Sfht 2.2a & lists a Chang-chiu Hall. Sfht 6.3a has moreover the phrase ,
plainly denoting the empresss stables, where chung is prefixed to another
of these seven titles.

The prefect of the empresss personal treasury had charge of

storing her money and goods, of making her clothes and shawls, and
repairing and washing them. He was a eunuch. (XIV Bb, xviii, par, 5; HHs T.

The prefect of the empresss Long Lane had charge of the palace
maids . (Cf. XIV Ba, 14, n. 29) He was a eunuch. (HHs. T,27.3a)


Evidently the heir-apparent and empress shared this granary for in HHs
T. 27.4a, it is placed among the heir-apparents offices.

It is interesting to note that in Former Han times, both the heir-apparent

and the empress had chiefs of their own stables , whereas in Later
Han times, only the heir-apparent had this office (HHs T. 7.5a). Evidently
ladies were more restricted in their movements in the Later Han period.

The invocator directed the various minor prayers and sacrifices

within the palace. His assistant was a eunuch. (HHs T. 26, 7a)

The empresss office for food had charge of food and drink (XIV Bb,
xix, par. 7; HHs T. 27, 4b). Yen glosses that this and the foregoing offices
were those of the empress.

The grand prolonguer of autumn was the chief minister to the

empress. He had charge of carrying out the orders of the empress, and
was the intermediary between the court and the imperial maternal relatives,
bringing them imperial grants and arranging imperial audiences for them.
He followed in the empresss train at her progresses. (XIV Bb, xviii & n.l;
HHs T. 27.2a) Yen explains this title as follows: Chiu (autumn) is the
season for harvesting and completing. Chang has the meaning of a long
time. Hence it was used for the title of the empresss [foremost] office. (Hs

The Chang-hsin Palace was within the Ch'ang-lo Palace,and was

the regular place where the Han empress dowagers lived. (Sfhtsp 3.1b)
Hence the empress dowager came to be called [the occupant of] the
Chang-hsin Palace , just as the empress was regularly called the
inner palace , even though there was no place by that name. The
supervisor of the household of the occupant of the Chang-hsin Palace
later entitled the privy treasurer of the Chang-hsin Palace
, accordingly had charge of the empress dowagers household. He
was a eunuch and outranked the grand prolonguer of autumn, just as the

empress dowager outranked the empress. (HHs T. 27.4a).


The Grand Empress Dowager ne Wang lived in the Chang-lo Palace,

hence the superintendent in charge of her household was called the privy
treasurer of the Chang-lo Palace , to indicate her rank as
superior to the deceased imperial empress dowager ne Fu. In the time of
Emperor Ai, there had been four empresses dowager in the capital, the
widow of Emperor Yan, ne Wang, and adoptive grandmother of Emperor
Ai, the widow of Emperor Cheng, ne Chao, and adoptive mother of
Emperor Ai, the natural grandmother ne Fu of Emperor Ai, and the
natural mother ne Ting of Emperor Ai. The two grandmothers competed
for precedence, causing much trouble. A privy treasurer was established
for each of these four empress dowagers. (Chou Shou-chang)

Government XIV Ba, 19

The Empresss Usher
The Empresss Usher ()1 was a Chin office. In sixth year of the middle
[part of his reign] (144 B.C.), Emperor Ching changed its title to the Grand
Prolonguer of Autumn ().2 Sometimes a eunuch was employed [for
this offlce] and sometimes a literatus ().3
Hs 19A.10b

The empresss usher was the title used in Chin times and the first part of
Former Han times for the official who performed part of the duty of the later
grand prolonguer of autumn. In Chin times, he was a eunuch. The Han
rulers sometimes appointed a virile man (XIV Bb, xviii, and n. 2). This
official probably acted as an intermediary between the imperial court and
the imperial relatives on the distaff side.

Cf. note 16, XIV Ba, 18.

We have translated this term in its usual meaning but in view of the tirnes,
it is possible the term is used only to indicate a virile person.

Government XIV Ba, 20

The Director of Dependent States
The directorship of dependent states ()1 was a Chin office. [Its
occupant] had charge of those barbarians who had surrendered [to the
Chinese]. In the third year of [the period] Yan-shou (120 B.C.) of Emperor
Wu, [when] the King of Kun-hsieh () surrendered, there was a
further increase in dependent states, and there were established chief
commandants [of dependent states] () with their assistants,
captains(), and millenaries (). As a subordinate office [there was the
prefect of the nine interpreters ().
In the first year of [the period] Ho-ping {28 B.C.) of Emperor
Cheng,[this bureau] was abolished and united [its duties with those of] the
grand herald. ().5
Hs 19A.IIa

The director of dependent states was the head of a court bureau set up
by the Chln government to deal with non-Chinese groups that had been
conquered. This bureau was continued by the Han rulers. But the Chin
director of guests (), one of the nine high ministers, later called the
grand herald, (cf. XIV Ba, 11 &: n. 2, 3) had charge of the noble barbarians
who surrendered to the Chinese. For his duties cf. XIV Bb, xii, & n. 6.

Cf. HFHD, II.62. This date is not that of the surrender, which occurred in
the autumn of 121 B.C., but that of the establishment of these new offices.
The King of Kun-hsieh led a troop of more than 40,000 persons. He
and his four chief subordinates were enfeoffed as marquises, with estates
in central China, while his people were moved to regions beyond the
Barrier in the present Kansu, Ning-hsia, and Sui-yan {Inner Mongolia}.
Consequently new offices had to be appointed to control them.

These chief commandants of dependent states controlled, with

the aid of their armies, certain local districts containing surrendered

barbarians. They were first appointed for the departments of An-ting,
Tien-shui, Shang, Hsi-ho and Wu-yan. In 60 B.C., a chief commandant of
the dependent state in the department of Chin-cheng was added to
control the surrendered Chiang. In 55 B.C. such offices were added in the
departments of Hsi-ho and Pei-ti for surrendered Hsiung-nu. (Chou
Shou-chang, Hssc 5A.17a-20a). These chief commandants were thus not
court officials, but local ones. Cf. XIV Bb, xxiv & 7). Mainly because of their
location along the border line pu tu-wei ()or shu-kuo tu-wei (
)was given more duties to perform than chn tu-wei (). Pu tu-wei
was entrusted to take charge of civil administration at well as military affairs
of the territory under his jurisdiction. Japanese scholar Kamada Shigeo
thinks that pu tu-wei was first established by Han Wu-ti () around
112-110 BC. (Vide: Kamada Shigeo [], Kan-tai no gun doi ni
tsuite [] Ty gakuh [] 3.2:198-203.)

The nine interpreters is a phrase from Sstc (quoted by Li Shan in a

note to Wh 46.22a; the quotation Wh 20.25a, however, has instead ),
which tells that when, in the time of King Cheng of the Chou dynasty,the
people of Yeh-shang from outside the southern borders of China
presented to the court a white pheasant, their speech was so unknown
that it took nine interpreters, one interpreting what they said to the next
one, before it could be rendered into Chinese. Nine must then not be
understood literally, but merely to denote the interpretation of distant
languages. (Hssc 5A.l7b) Cf. also XIV Ba, 11, n. 5.

The dependent states controlled by this office were located at the

Chinese borders. Consequently their control came to be administered like
other local governments. The chief commandants who governed them
were appointed to local districts as early as 121 B.C. A special central
bureau for these local districts became unnecessary, and so was dropped,
these dependent states being assimilated to other local governments.

Government XIV Ba, 21

The Chief Commandant of Waters and Parks
The chief commandant of waters and parks ()1 was first
established by Emperor Wu in the second year of [the period] (115 B.C.)
Yan-ting. He was in charge of the Shang-lin Park. He had five
As subordinates, he had the prefects and chiefs of the nine offices of
the Shang-lin [Park] (), of price adjustment transportation (),3 of
imperial precious materials (), of the forbidden gardens ()5 of
pleasure boats (), of the office for coinage (), of the clever
workmen (),8 of the six stables (),9 and of the office for assorting
copper ().10 There was also the office of mountains and forests (
), the office of boat-building () the supervisor of waters (
), and of agriculture, and of the granary( ). There were also the
chiefs and assistants of the seven offices of directors of waters in the
Kan-chan ()16 and Shang-lin [Parks]. All these [offices] were
subordinate to [the chief commandant of waters and parks].
[The office of the Shang-lin [Park] had eight assistants and twelve
commandants (). The [office of] price adjustment and transportation had
four assistants. The [office of] imperial precious articles had two assistants.
The supervisor of waters had three assistants. The [office of forbidden
gardens (chin pu) had two commandants. [the offices of the directors of
waters in] the Kan-chan and Shang-lin [Parks] had four assistants.
In the second year of [the period] Chien-shih (31 B.C.), Emperor
Cheng abolished the offices of the clever workman and the six stables.
Wang Mang changed [the title of] the chief commandant of waters and
parks and called him the my forester (). Originally the offices of the
imperial precious materials of the Shang-lin [Park] and of mountains and
forests, together with the [ office for] casting of cash () were all
subordinate to the privy treasurer.
Hs 19A.11a-b


The chief commandant of waters and parks had charge of the

imperial parks and the waters and products therein. The imperial parks,
especially the Shang-lin park, constituted a very large source of revenue
for the imperial privy purse, so that a special bureau had to be set up for
them. In the time of Emperor Yan, the chief commandant of waters and
parks had 2,500,000,000 cash (Hs 86.11a). Originally the grand minister
of agriculture had charge of the monopolies of iron, of salt, and of coinage,
but these duties proved too much for him so the chief commandant of
waters and parks was established to take care of these two monopolies.
But when Yang Ko denounced so many merchants for incorrectly
reporting their fortunes and these fortunes were confiscated and
accumulated in the Shang-lin Park, the chief commandant of waters and
parks was changed to be in charge of that park. (Sc 30.15a = Mh II.586-7 =
Hs 24B.14a)
Ying Shao explains, Anciently, the office of mountains and forests
was called heng . [This official] had charge of the various pools and
parks, hence he was entitled shui-heng (waters and
mountain-forests). Chang Yen adds, He had charge of directing the
waters together with the Shang-lin Park, hence he was called the
shui-heng. He controlled various offices, hence he was called a tu (
director). He had soldiers and convicts for military purposes, hence he was
called a wei ( commandant). Yen, however, disregards these
statements, saying, Heng is to balance. He had charge of balancing their
taxes and payments.

According to the statement of Ssu-ma Chien (Sc 30.15a) and by Pan Ku

(Hs 24B.14a. Cf. section X), the new set up was to be entrusted with the
affairs concerning the government monopoly of the production of iron and
salt. When the collection of the min tax (, cf. section X) started, money
and valuables were piled up in the Shang-lin Park. This office then was
transferred to take charge of the Park.

The Shang-lin Park was a huge region, ten li west of the ancient
city of Chang-an. It was more than 300 li square, occupying the two

counties of Chou-chih and Hu . It contained seventy separate

palaces, each of which could contain a thousand chariots and ten
thousand horsemen. It contained a menagerie and an arboretum, as well
as a hunting preserve. Common people were moved there to till the
ground and slaves to care for the menagerie. (Sfhtsp; cf. n. 14) It
had its own prison. (HFHD, II.367) For the superintendents of the ten
ponds in the Shang-lin Park, cf. XIV ba, 14, & n. 22. Since the imperial
parks contributed to the imperial privy purse, this chief commandant of
waters and parks belonged in the ministry of the privy treasurer, so that it
was natural to make those superintendents subordinate to the privy
treasurer. (Cf. also XIV Bb, xv, &n.9)

The office of price adjustment and transportation probably did for

the Shang-lin and Kan-chan parks what the offices of price adjustment
and transportation (chn-shu) and of price equalization and standards
(ping-chn) did for the parts of the empire under the control of the grand
minister of agri_culture (cf. XIV Ba, 13 & n. 5, 6) and what the office of
equalization did for the counties under the control of the grand minister of
ceremonies (XIV Ba, 6 & n.11).

The office of imperial precious materials (y-hsiu ) was, glosses Ju

Shun, the name of a place. It was in [the county of] Lan-tien. Its land was
rich and fertile and produced many things for imperial use which would be
presented [to the throne]. The Memoir of Yang Hsiung [Hs 87A.17a calls it
Y-su. In the Sfht [SP 4.2a], Y-hsiu and Yi-chun are both the names of
parks. Yen adopts the latter part of Ju Shuns interpretation and locates
Y-hsiu, not in Lan-tien, but on the Y-su Stream . These are,
however, two different locations. The Y-su Park and Stream were
southwest of Chang-an (Ytc 227.43b), while Lan-tien was southeast. The
solution is probably to be found in Hs 28A.11a which states, sub Lan-tien,
Its mountains produce beautiful jade. The office of imperial precious
materials then probably mined this jade and other products. Ju Shun has
confused two localities with similar names. The first part of his gloss is
correct, but the latter part is not,

These forbidden gardens from which the emperor probably secured

revenue were lent to the poor in 47 B.C. (HFHD, II.306). Shen Chin-han

(Hssc 5a.19b) states that they provided vegetables for the imperial

The office of oarsmen and scullers (pleasure boats) was an office

for boats (Yen Shih-ku). In the tumult of 91 B.C., these oarsmen and
scullers were mobilized to fight (Hs 66, 3b). Yen explains that both these
words originally had the tree radical and that the short ones are called
chi (oars) and the long ones are called chao (sculls). This was evidently
the office for imperial boats. Shen Chi-han specifically calls them war
vessels (Hssc 5A.19b).

The office for coinage was the office for casting cash (Ju Shun). It
was then the imperial mint and was probably located in the Shang-lin Park.

The office of the clever workman was abolished in 31 B.C. (HFHD,

II.380), so that nothing more seems to be known about it. It was probably
an imperial atelier located in the Shang-lin Park.

The six stables were probably also located in the Shang-lin Park.
They were also abolished in 31 B.C. (HFHD, II.380). The grand keeper of
equipages controlled many other stables (cf. XIV ba, 9). HcI lists six
stables, but they were all included among those of the grand keeper of

The office for assorting copper had charge of separating and

distinguishing in the kinds of copper. (Ju Shun) It was evidently the office
for receiving materials for the mint (cf. n.7).

In translating the office of mountains and forests , I have followed

Ying Shao ({cf. n. 1). Shen Chin-han says this office was probably in
charge of measures (Hssc 5A.20b).

The duties of the director of waterworks () seem to have been

defined only by this title. He probably had charge of the corve building
dikes, etc. in the imperial parks. Shen Chin-han says this office may have

been in charge of building boats (Hssc 5A.20b).


There were directors of the waters () in many offices: in that of the

grand minister of ceremonies (XIV Ba, 6, & n.12) for the counties under his
control; in that of the privy treasurer (XIV Ba, 14.&n. 20); in that of the
grand minister of agriculture for the departments and kingdoms (XIV Ba 13,
& n,12); and in the three capital departments (XIV Ba, 22).

There were also offices for agriculture () in many offices. Hs

24B.14b=Mh III.587 states, Moreover [in 106 B.C. ] in each [of the offices
of the chief commandant of] waters and parks, the privy treasurer, the
grand keeper of equipages, and the grand [prefect of] agriculture there
was established an office for agriculture, who should continually go into the
departments and counties to examine the cultivated fields which had been
confiscated [to the state] and to have them cultivated. The slaves and
slave-women from these [places] who were confiscated [for the state] were
distributed among the various parks, to care for their dogs, horses, birds,
and beasts and to supply the various offices. Han-chiu-i B.8a also states,
Government slaves and slave-women, together with poor people from the
whole empire whose property did not amount to 5000 [cash], were moved
and established in the [imperial] parks, to care for the deer. They were
used to collect and pick up the deer manure, for [the privilege of which
people had paid] five cash per person per day. This office for agriculture
hence supervised the agriculture in the imperial parks, which was
performed by people moved to these regions for that purpose. Shen
Chin-han also declares that this office had charge of confiscated land
(Hssc 5A.21a)

Since agriculture was carried on in these imperial parks, there were

naturally also granaries , to store the products of these farms. Chang
Chiang was chief of the granary at the Kan-chan Park (Hs 76.13b; Hssc

The Kan-chan Park was established by Emperor Wu, in

Yn-yang County, now Ching-yang , Shensi. This park was 540 li
in circumference and contained the Kan-chan Palace and more than a
hundred palaces, balls, towers, and pavilions. (Sfht 4.2a) This and the
Shang-lin Park were the two largest imperial parks of Former Han times.

(Cf. also XlV Ba, 8, & n.8)

Government XIV Ba, 22

The Prefect of the Capital Region
The Prefect of the Capital ()1 was a Chou office. Chin continued
it. He had charge of the capital. In the second year [of his reign] (155 B.C.)
Emperor Ching divided [the duties of this official] and established an
Eastern Prefect of the capital () and a Western Prefect of the capital
In the first year of [the period] Tai-chu (104 B.C.) of Emperor Wu, he
changed the title [of the Western Prefect of the Capital Region] to
governor general of the capital region (). As subordinates, he had
the two prefects and assistants of the Chang-an Markets ()4 and
Kitchens (),5 also the two chiefs and assistants [of the offices] of director
of the waters () and of the office for iron ().
The title of the Eastern Prefect of the capital was changed to the
eastern supporter (). As subordinates, he had the prefect,
assistant, and commandant of [the office] of the sacrificial oblations and
victims (),9 also the four chiefs and assistants [in the offices] of the
director of the eastern waters (), 10 the office for iron ()11 of the
Yn-[yang] Encampment ( []), and the Western Market in
Chang-an (),13 all of which were subordinate to [the eastern
Hs 19A.Ilb--I2a

Clerk (Prefect) of the capital was an ancient title. In Chin times and in Han
times, from 198 to 155 B.C., this title was used. (In 206 B.C. the territory of
this official was the kingdom of Sai ; from the autumn of 206 until 198,
this region was ruled by the governor of the department of Wei-nan ;
cf. Hs 28A.11a.) The prefect of the capital region controlled the local
government of the imperial capital, just as the governors administered

In the Chou-li (Clcs 26.14a-15a; Biot TL 116-8), the clerk of the
capital is however a court official, who acts as secretary to the king, writing
out edicts and keeping duplicates, performing the same duties as the Han
masters of writing. This retention of a title with a change in the duties is a
common feature of Chinese bureaucratic history. A clerk of the capital is
mentioned in the state of Chao in 403 B.C. ( Sc 43.16a = Mh V.55).
The name of this official, Nei-shih, was applied to the region that he

In 155 B.C. , the region Nei-shih, was divided into two, and clerks of the
eastern and western parts of the capital were established. The
words left and right are to be understood as denoting the directions
indicated by the position of the emperor on his throne, which faced south.
The present text lacks the word after the . The next sentence
presupposes that this word has been used. This word is found in
quotations of this passage in a note by Chang Shou-chieh to Sc 11.1b, in
Ptsc 7b, 4b, PKLT 76, 37b, and Tpyl 252, la.
In Hs 28A.11a, 11b, 12b, it is said that both the governor-general of
the capital region () and the eastern supporter () were
established in the sixth year of Chien-wu of Emperor Wu (135 B.C.). This
contradicts the statement in our present text. Yen Shih-ku refutes the
statements in Hs 28A and confirms that of the present text. However,
Chien Ta-zhao finds that neither the statement in Hs 28A nor that in our
present text is reliable. According to him, the office of the Eastern Prefect
of the capital () is recorded in the first year of Emperor Ching (156
B.C.) in Hs 19B.4a where it is recorded that Chao Tso was Eastern
Prefect of the Capital in 156 B.C. (Hspi 9.134). Therefore, he assumes
that the establishment of the offices of the Eastern Prefect of the Capital
and the Western Prefect of the Capital () must have been carried
out before Emperor Ching.

The governor-general of the capital ruled the central part of the imperial
capital region. Chang Yen explains this title, A locality extremely important
is called a ching. The Tso-chuan [Legges trans. p. 103] says, No one will
compare with them in greatness [using ching to express greatness). Ten
times an yi (100,000) is a chao (1,000,000). Yin is to govern. Yen adds,

Ching [means] great. Chao is a large number. It says that it is where a

great multitude are, hence it is called ching-chao. There is no word in this
title meaning general.
The territory of this official was called by his title, the Ching-chao-yin;
later the last word was dropped and it was called merely Ching-chao. Sfht
1.1b states, [The headquarters] of the governor-general of the capital
was in the Shang-kuan Ward, in the south of the old city [of Chang-an].
Yen, in a note to Hs 19A.12a however quotes the Sfht, [The headquarters
of] the governor-general of the capital were in the eastern end of Front
Street in Shang-kuan [Ward] in the office of the former
commandant of the capital.

The prefect supervised the markets. Sfht 2.1a says,There also

was the storied building at the Tang Market, where was the office of the
prefect [of the markets, located there] for the purpose of controlling
matters of buying and selling and bartering the goods and merchandise of
the merchants. Sfht 2.1a quotes the Miao-chi, saying, There were nine
markets in Chang-an. Each one was 266 paces (1197 ft. Eng. meas.)
square. Six markets were west of the [imperial pathway] which could not be
crossed, except outside the city gates), and three were east of the
[imperial] pathway. For every four wards there was one market. These
markets seem to have been what we would today call bazaars. The
Eastern Market which had a jail, was under the governor-general of the
capital (Han-chiu-i pu-i A.5a, quoted in Ptsc 45.6b and in Tpyl 643.5a).

The office of the Chang-an Kitchen was a place where

sacrifices were prepared for use.. The ancient Chinese kitchen was a
slaughter-house as well as a place for cooking. Hs 25B.12b says, The
office of the Chang-an Kitchen is where the imperial government furnished
sacrifices to those [divinities] sacrificed to by the envoys {and}
magician-priests who wait upon the gods in behalf of the department and
kingdoms, at altogether 683, places. Thus Shen Chin-han declares it
provided sacrificial food and food for envoys from the barbarians who
came to do homage or present tribute (Hssc 5A.22a).

For the director of the waters, cf. XIV Ba, 21, & n.13.

The office for iron was located in the county of Cheng , north of the
present Hua , Shensi (Hs 28A.11a).

In explaining the term, eastern supporter, Chang Yen says Ping is. to
support. I is to assist.
[The headquarters of] the eastern supporter were inside the old city
of Chang-an], southwest of the Temple to the Grand Emperor. (Sfht 1.2b).
Yen Shi-kus quotation, instead of southwest of reads at the western
entrance of. (Hs 19A.12a)
This title, Tso-ping-i, became the name of his department. It was
later abbreviated to Ping-i. For its location, cf. I A, Table II, no. 2 and map.

In the office of sacrificial oblations and victims , the first word,

according to Yen, lin had charge of storing grain and hsi had to do with
rearing victims. Both were for the purpose of offering sacrifices.

Cf. XIV Ba, 21, & n. 13.


The office for iron was located at,Hsia-yang , a place 20 li

south of the present Han-cheng , in eastern Shensi (Hs 28A, 12a; Ytc

Nothing seems known about the Yn-yang] Encampment. Shen

Chin-han in his Hssc 5A.23b comments, I suspect it was at Yn-yang,
where was the Kan-chan Palace, the favorite imperial summer palace,
which would need an encampment for troops. This title is quite parallel to
that of the capital encampment

The text reads and the four markets in Chang-an, reading ,which I
have emended to read . The Western Market in Chang-an was
under the control of the eastern supporter and had a jail (Hcy, quoted in
Ptsc 45.6b). One chief would hardly be established for four markets and
the error of transcription is easily made. While the jurisdiction of the
eastern supporter might extend to a market in the northwestern suburbs of

the city, it could hardly extend so far as to include the 16 wards of the city
served by four markets (cf. n. 4).

Government XIV Ba, 23.

The Palace Commandant Controlling Noble Ranks
The palace commandant controlling noble ranks ()1 was a
Chin office. [Its occupant] had charge of the nobles. In the sixth year of the
middle [part of his reign] (114 B.C.), Emperor Ching changed his title to
that of chief commandant [controlling noble ranks ()]. In the first
year of [the period] Tai-chu, Emperor Wu changed his title to the Western
Sustainer () and had him rule the western [part] of the region
[previously under the rule of] the Prefect of the Capital. As subordinates,
he had the prefect and assistant of [the office of] herdsman of domestic
animals (),3 also the four chiefs and assistants. of the director of the
western waters ([]),4 the offices for iron (),5 the kitchen(),6 and
the kitchen at Yung (),7 all of which were subordinate [to the western
Together with the eastern supporter and the governor-general of the
capital region, they constituted the three adjuncts (). Each of
them had two assistants. The marquises were transferred to be under [the
control of the grand herald.
In the fourth year of [the period] Yan-ting (113 B.C.), [ Emperor Wu]
also established one chief commandant to each of the three adjuncts (
) and one assistant chief commandant ().
From the grand tutor of the heir apparent to the western sustainer,
[these heads of bureaus] were all ranked at 2000 piculs and their
assistants [were ranked at] 600 piculs.
Hs 19A,12a-b

The Palace Commandant Controlling Noble Ranks later called

the chief commandant controlling noble ranks had charge of the
nobles, and seems to have had nothing to do with local government. The

change of his title to western sustainer was probably merely a matter of

charging the title of the same person, from chief commandant controlling
noble ranks to western sustainer, and retaining him in the same office,
since there seems to have been no similarity in the duties of these two
officials. The care of the marquises was given to the grand herald
when this change was made.

The western sustainer ruled the region west of the capital like the
governor of a department.
[The headquarters of] the western sustainer were north of the
Hsi-yin Street [in Chang-an]. Yen Shih-kus quotation, instead of
north of, reads at the northern end of and adds at the yamen of the
former [chief commandant of] noble ranks. Chang-an and eastwards was
[the department of] the governor of the capital, Chang-ling [northeast
of the present Hsien-yang , Shensi] and northwards was [the
department of] the eastern sustainer. Wei-cheng Ytc 229.4a locates
it east of the present Hsien-yang] and westwards was [the department of]
the western sustainer.
The territory under the government of the western sustainer was
called by his title, the Yu-fu.feng, later shortened to Fu-feng.
Sfht 1.2a declares, The headquarters of the governor-general of
the capital, the eastern supporter, and the western sustainer were all
inside the city of Chang-an. These were the three adjuncts.
On the meaning of this title, Chang Yen explains, Fu is to assist .
Feng is to influence .

Of the herdsman of domestic animals , only his title is known. Hs

76.7b states that powerful commoners who were condemned for crime
were sent to the office of the herdsman of domestic animals and made to
chop hay. The existence of this office indicates the importance of cattle in
Han China.

The director of the western waters performed the same office for
the western sustainer that the director of the eastern waters (cf. n. 10) and
the director of waters (cf. n.6) did for the eastern supporter and for the

governor-general of the capital respectively. (Cf. XIV Ba, 21, and N.13) Liu
Pin remarks correctly that the of the text should be to correspond
with the of the director of the eastern waters.

The offices for iron in Yu-fu-feng were at Yung and Chi (Hs 28A,
13a). For Yung, cf. IV Ba, 6 and n.17. Chi was the present Pin , Shensi.

For the kitchen , which had the same functions as that subordinate to
the governor-general of the capital, cf. n. 5.

The Kitchen at Yung had the same function as in the capital (cf.n.5).
Ju Shun remarks, The five altars [to the Five Lords] were at Yung, hence
it had a kitchen. (Cf. Ba 6 and n. 17.)

The three adjuncts was a general term denoting the

governor-general of the capital, the eastern supporter, and the western
sustainer, also denoting the departments (provinces) of these three
officials: Ching-chao-yin, Yu-fu-feng, and Tso-ping-i or. Chiang-chao,
Fu-feng, and Ping-i, often termed the three supporting districts.

Sfht 1.2b states, The departments of the three adjuncts had chief
commandants like those of the other departments. The headquarters of
the chief commandant to the capital adjunct was at Hua-yin
(which Ytc 244, 4a locates southeast of the present Hua-yin, Shensi)), the
headquarters of the chief commandant to the eastern adjunct ,
was at Kao-ling (cf. Hs 28A, llb. Kao-ling was 1 li southwest of the
present Kao-ling, Shensi, according to Ytc 228.8b), and the headquarters
of the chief commandant to the western adjunct , was at Mei ,
(also in Hs 28A.13a. Mei was northeast of the present Mei, Shensi,
according to Ytc 236.2b).
They controlled the passes to Kuan-chung and examined those who
traveled in or out. (XIV Bb, xxiv, par. 7)

Officials ranking at 2000 piculs received, in Later Han times, 120 hu of

grain per month; those of 600 piculs received 70 hu per month (HHs. T.

28.16b, 17a).
These officials ranking at 2000 piculs were the heads of bureaus and
were the next rank in the imperial court below the nine high ministers. They
were: the grand tutor (tai-fu) to the heir-apparent (XIV Ba, 16), the imperial
court architect (XIV Ba, 17), the supervisor of the household of the
empress and heir-apparent (XIV Ba, 18), the director of dependent states
(XIV Ba, 20), the chief commandant of waters and parks (XIV Ba, 21), the
governor-general of the capital region (XIV Ba, 22), the eastern supporter,
and the western sustainer (Ibid.). The ten colonels (XIV Ba 25, 26) and
other important officials, such as governors of departments, also ranked at

Government XIV Ba, 24

The Chief Commandant of the Protecting Army
The chief commandant of the protecting army (hu-chn-wei
) was a Chin office. In the fourth year of [the period] Yan-shou (119
B.C.), Emperor Wu made [this office] subordinate to the grand minister of
war. In the first year of [the period] Sui-ho (8 B.C.), Emperor Cheng [had
this official] live in the yamen of the grand minister of war like [the imperial
chancellors] director of justice. In the first year of [the period] Yan-shou
(2 B.C.), Emperor Ai changed his title to be minister of brigands ().4 In
the first year of [the period] Yan-shih (A.D. 1), Emperor Ping changed his
title to be [Chief Commandant of the ]protecting army.

Hs 19A.12b

The duties of the chief commandant of the protecting army are

nowhere stated. In Hs 64B.17b he was reported to be conducting an
expeditionary campaign against the southern barbarians. In Hs 79.4a he
was said to he commander-in-chief of the garrison in Lung-hsi department.
In Hs 55.4a-b he and his army constituted part of the forces of Wei Ching,
the Great General, in his campaign against the Hsiung-nu in 124 B.C.
Yen Shih-ku glosses, It means that he protected all the armies. (Hs
55, 4a-b). A chief commandant ranked above a colonel and below a

At this time, the grand minister of war was still supposed to be the chief
commander in the field, so that his title should be translated commander.
in-chief. (cf. XIV Ba, 2 and n.2)

Cf. XIV Ba, 1. Possibly this chief commandant was expected to report and
punish evil-doers as did the director of justice.

Minister of brigands is the title given to one of the six high ministers
in the Chou-li (Clcs = Biot, TL II, 286), and this title was probably
given in imitation.

Government XIV Ba, 25

The Colonel Director in Charge of Investigation
The colonel director in charge of investigation () was a
Chou office. In the fourth year of [the period] Cheng-ho (89 B.C.),
Emperor Wu first established [this office in Han times]. He bore credentials
and was accompanied by 1200 convicts from the offices in the capital. He
arrested [those performing] witchcraft and black magic and controlled
great evil-doers. Later his troops were abolished, and he investigated [the
government in the departments] of the three adjuncts, the three Ho
[departments], and that of Hung-nung. In the fourth year of [the period]
Chu-yan (45 B.C.), Emperor Yan did away with his credentials, and in
the fourth year of [the period] Yan-yen (9 B.C.), Emperor Cheng
abolished [this office]. In the second year of [the period] Sui-ho (7 B.C.),
Emperor Ai re-established [this office], but called it the director in charge of
investigation (ssu-li).6 He wore the bonnet for advancing the worthy and
was made subordinate to the grand minister of works, like the director of
justice [to the imperial chancellor].8
Hs 19A.12b

There is a director in charge of investigation (ssu-li ) mentioned in the

Chou-Ii (Clcs 36.8b-9a = Biot, TL II, 370-71), but this translation of his title
does not fit the Chou official. This official was in charge of the convict
gangs used to arrest robbers and to perform ignominious services at the
capital and palaces. Dubs has {elsewhere} translated this title, Colonel
Director of the Retainers.
That the Chou-li interpretation represents the tradition about Chou
times is shown by the fact that Emperor Wu first gave the colonel director
in charge of investigation a gang of 1200 criminals out of the
capital prisons and had him arrest those accused of black magic and other
criminals in dealing with whom a large force might be needed. Cheng
Hsan states that his gang of criminals made roads and canals and

ditches(Clcs 24.3a).
When later, inspectors of regional divisions (cf. XIV Ba, 30, &n. 3)
were appointed to spy upon the government of the departments, the
director in charge of investigation was given the duties of an inspector
over the seven departments about the imperial capital. He investigated all
offices, from the imperial heir-apparent and the three highest ministers
down to the offices in the neighboring departments (Ptsc 61.2a),
impeaching those who committed any crime. (Hs 70.6a; 72.29a). Such
cases were tried by the commandant of justice (Hs 77.2a). Perhaps the
most outstanding investigation made by this official was that revealing
Emperor Chengs infanticide of his own sons (cf. HFHD, II.369--72).

The credentials enabled this colonel director to arrest persons summarily

(Hs 77.5a [Hktw 4.9b]).

Cf. XIV 8a, 22.

The three Ho departments were those of Ho-tung, Ho-nei, and Ho-nan.

The six departments mentioned previously, together with that of

Hung-lung, constituted the circuit inspected by the colonel director of
investigation. (cf. I, Table II, A)
This official was not the only or the chief investigator in the imperial
government, so that this translation of his title is misleading. There were
also the chief clerks and the director of justice to the imperial chancellor
(XIV Ba, 1), the palace assistant secretary (XIV Ba, 3, n. 3), the special
commissioners wearing embroidered garments (XIV Ba, 3 and n. 9), and
the chief commandant of the protecting army in 8 B.C. (XIV Ba, 24, and n.
3). The chief clerks of the imperial chancellor and his director of justice did
perhaps more inspecting than the ssu-li hsiao-wei, whose title is here
translated the colonel director in charge of investigation.

The last two words of this Chinese title were merely omitted, to conform to
the title in the Chou-Ii.

Shen Chin-han (Hssc 5A, 26b) remarks that this clause is out of harmony
with the rest of the Table which does not mention the court robes of
officials, and is probably a copyists insertion for some gloss. According to
HHs T. 30.7a, all officials, from those ranking fully 2000 piculs on down,
wore the bonnet for advancing the worthy.

Cf. XIV Ba, 1 and XIV Ba, 24 4k n. 3.

Government XIV Ba, 26

The Colonels at the Capital
The colonel of the city gates () had charge of the troops
garrisoning the city gates of the imperial capital. He had majors() and
twelve captains of the city gates ().
The colonel of the capital encampment () had charge of the
inner and outer gates to the ramparts of the Northern Army (encampment).
He had charge of four forts.
The colonel of garrison cavalry () had charge of
The colonel of foot soldiers () had charge of the troops
garrisoning the gates of the Shang-lin Park.
The colonel of the picked cavalry () , had charge of the
picked cavalry.3
The colonel of the Chang River [Encampment] () had
charge of the northern barbarian () cavalry at the Chang River and the
Hsan-ch (Lodge encampments).4
There also were the colonel of the northern barbarian cavalry (
), who had charge of the northern barbarian (Hu) cavalry at
Chih-yang. [This position] was not regularly filled.
The colonel of archers who can shoot at a sound () had
charge of the expectant appointee archers who can shoot at a sound (
The colonel of the as-rapid-as-tigers () had charge of light
chariots.7The foregoing eight colonels, [from the colonel of garrison
cavalry to the colonel of the as rapid as tigers] were all first established by
Emperor Wu. They had assistants and majors.8
From the [colonel] director in charge of investigation to the colonel of
the as rapid as tigers, [these colonels] were all ranked at two thousand
Hs 19A.12b-13a


Each of the twelve city gates to the city of Chang-an had one captain.
These garrisons for the city gates were first established in 91 B.C., as a
result of the rebellion of Emperor Wus Heir-apparent Li (HFHD, II.114).
This colonels post was usually given to an important courtier as a
concurrent position (Hs 51.8b; 81.25a; 98.12a; 10a.11b). The captains
were in charge of opening and closing the city gates (Yen Shih-ku in a
note to Hs 66.16a). These gates are described in Sfht 1.6b-8b.

For the Northern Army, cf. XIV Ba, 15 and n.l. This colonel controlled the
gates to this Armys encampment, while the commandant of the capital
controlled the army.
Instead of four forts (for the use of the latter word to denote a
fort, cf. HFHD, II.102, n. 32.9), the present text reads the Western
Frontier Regions , which reading is plainly inappropriate for this office
(cf. XIV B, xxv). Yen Shih-kus gloss shows that the latter was already the
reading of the text in his day. HHs T. 27.8b, in mentioning this office, says
nothing about the western frontier regions. Wang Nien-sun regards
as the wrong form of . As proof for his suggestion, he gives the
following reasons and one corroboration. First, all the colonels listed here
were officers in charge of the garrison of the capital region, and it seems
improbable that they should have taken part in the affairs concerning the
countries of the western region. Second, in the text of the Hs 19A, which
immediately follows this passage, a special office for ruling the western
regions is discussed. This passage is quoted in Hc 5.11b with the reading
four forts, so this emendation is thus included in our translation.

Concerning the first two words in the title of the colonel of picked cavalry
, there was an ancient dispute. Ju Shun declares that they
denoted people of Yeh . but the present Chekiang and Kuangtung
has never produced outstanding cavalrymen. Chin Shao moreover
interprets the first word as meaning superior in talent and physical
strength. Yen Shih-ku agrees with Ju Shun. In 23 A.D., when Wang Mang

suspected that the troops at the city gates were unreliable, he( selected
some of the picked cavalry to guard those gates (Hs 99C.32a). He would
hardly have done so if these cavalrymen had come from the east.

The colonel of the Chang River encampment controlled two

encampments of northern barbarian cavalrymen. The Chang River
was a branch of the Pa River (Scchc 19.18a), located west of Lan-tien,
Shensi (Aoyama 391428b). Hsan-ch (Yen Shih-ku states it was
the name of a Lodge) was located somewhere in the department of
Ching-chao-yin (Wang Hsien-chien in a note to Hspc 91.10b). (See also
note to HHc 27.7a, 8a.)

The occurrence and high ranking of the colonel of the northern barbarian
cavalry together with the colonel of the Chang River
encampment, shows that Emperor Wu and subsequent Han emperors did
not depend altogether upon Chinese for defence, but were glad to employ
auxiliaries, like the Romans. Chih-yang , was located 2 li northwest of
the present Ching-yang , Shensi (Ytc 228, 9b). In addition to this
encampment, the Chih-yang Palace was located there,

The meaning of the curious title, colonel of archers who can shoot at a
sound has been discussed. Fu Chien explains, They were
skilled in shooting. When in the dim dusk they hear a sound, they hit it.
Hence their title. But Ying Shao adds, An imperial edict naming [whom
they should shoot] was necessary before [they shot], hence they are
called archers who await an imperial edict (the phrase we have translated
expectant appointee archers). The meaning of sound is taken from
Mencius V, B, ii, 6 (Legge, p. 372). to give a signal by means of a sound,
so that shoot at a sound may mean shoot at a signal.

For the as rapid as tigers, cf. XIV Ba, 7, and n. 24.

The eight colonels established by Emperor Wu include all the preceding,

except the colonel of the city gates. Because the colonel of the northern
barbarian cavalry was not always appointed, they were sometimes called

the seven colonels (Hs 23.8b).


These officials ranking at 2000 piculs were the ten colonels, beginning
with the colonel director of investigation (XIV Ba, 25) and including the nine
mentioned in the present section. For their salaries, cf. XIV Ba 23, a.10.

Government, B (XIV), Ba 27
The Protector-General of the Western Regions
The protector-general of the western frontier [regions] ()
was a concurrent office. In the second year of [the period] Ti-chieh (68 BC),
Emperor Hsan first established [this office], appointing to it a chief
commandant of cavalry () or a grandee-remonstrant, who was sent
to protect the thirty-six states of the western frontier regions () had an
associate [protector-general of the western frontier regions] and colonel
(), who ranked at equivalent to 2000 piculs, one assistant (cheng),
two majors (ssu-ma), two captains (hou), and two millenaries (chien jen
The mou-and-chi colonel () was established by Emperor
Yan in the first year of [the period] Chu-yan (48 B.C.).3 He had one
assistant (cheng), one major. (ssu-ma), and five captains (hou).He was
ranked at equivalent to 600 piculs.4
Hs 19A.13a-b

The protector-general of the western frontier regions had

general charge of the various subject states (at first 36, later fifty-odd Hs west of present Tun-huang, Kansu (which latter was the
headquarters of a regular department and not under his charge),
especially the states north and south of the Taklamakan Desert, but also
including some north and west of the Pamirs and Saripol (the Chinese
Tsung-ling ) (Hs 96). He kept watch over these countries and, upon
receiving imperial approval, could attack rebellious ones (Hs 96A.3a). Hs
96 A.2b dates the origin of this protector-general in 59 B.C., not 68 B.C.,
as in the text. The Hki (quoted in Tpyl 251.6a) dates the ranking of this
position at 2000 piculs in 59 B.C. Previously, Cheng Chi was a chief
commandant of cavalry and was a protector-general in the western frontier
regions (Hs 70.4b), so that this office existed before 59 B.C., although at

that time Cheng Chi protected only the southern road, south of the
desert, and not the northern one (Hs 96A.2b).
The headquarters of the protector-general were at Wu-lei (Hs
96A.3a), which is identified with Chadir, 45 km. west of Charchi (Folke
Bergman, Archeological Researches in Sinkiang).

The most famous associate-colonel protector-general was Chen Tang

(cf. HFHD, II.279-285). The full title, associate protector-general of
the western frontier regions is given in Hs 70; here he is
entitled, for short, associate and colonel .

The Mou-and-chi Colonel had charge of a large agricultural

garrison in the western frontier regions, whose troops could be used to
keep order. His troops were thus the pivot of Chinese power along the
eastern part of the silk road. He guarded and pacified the various states
[in the western frontier regions] and opened [irrigation] canals and
distributed seed as a means of holding down and conquering [the
people]. (Hki, quoted in HHs A. 2.25b; M.78.1a).
HHs states that Emperor Yan appointed two colonels, a
Mou Colonel and a Chi Colonel. Hs 96 B.20a, however, speaks of one
Mou-and-Chi colonel, Hs Pu, whose agricultural garrison was in the
territory of Ch-shih (present Turfan), while Hs 96B.7b states that the
Chi Colonel was moved to garrison Ku-mo (present Aksu). It is
possible that at first there was only one Mou-and-Chi Colonel and later two,
a Mou colonel and a Chi colonel.
There are various explanations of this peculiar title. Yen Shih-ku
gives two explanations as to the meaning of the title Mou-chi hsiao-wei.
One of the explanations says that of the ten Heavenly Stems, all have
regular positions except mou and chi which hold but a temporary sway.
Thus, because this office was not a regular office, it was named after mou
and chi. The second explanation states that among the ten Heavenly
Stems, mou and chi stand in the middle guarding the four quarters of the
world. Thus, that this official was named a mou and chi was because he
was stationed in the middle of the Western Region protecting the various
countries there. One other explanation declares that the Hsiung-nu
esteemed the days mou and chi as the most fortunate of all (Hs 94A.8a).
This colonel was established to prevent the Hsiung-nu from invading this

region so in his title there were used these two stems (Shen Chin-han).
The present pronunciation of the first word of this title, wu, originated
in 907, in order to tabu the name of an ancestor of the Liang dynasty.

In addition to the officers mentioned in the text, there were the two
following colonels: The colonel protecting the Chiang (),
established first in 112/1 B.C. (HHs M. 77.9a). He possessed credentials
and was ranked at equivalent to 2000 piculs to direct and control the
Chiang Tibetans (XIV Bb, xxvi, par. 3, note 6; HHs T. 28.10a-b) in
Chin-cheng department .
The colonel protecting the Wu-huan () was also
established by Emperor Wu, ranking at 2000 piculs and possessing
credentials. He was to supervise and direct the Wu-huan, who dwelt in
present Manchuria, keeping them from joining the Hsiung-nu (Hki, quoted
in Tpyl 242.4b; HHs T. 80.3b).

Government XIV Ba, 28

Concurrent Court Offices
The Chief Commandant of the Imperial Equipage

The chief commandant of the imperial equipage () had

charge of driving the imperial chariot, and the chief commandant of
escorting cavalry () had charge of escort cavalry. Both [offices]
were first established by Emperor Wu and were ranked at equivalent to two
thousand piculs.
The attendants within the palace,3 the eastern and western
department heads (), the inspectors of officials (), the
mounted attendants without specified appointment (),6 and the regular
palace attendant ()7 were all concurrent offices. Those to whom these
titles were concurrently given were perhaps full marquises, generals, high
ministers,8 the grandees,9 commanders,10 prefects of the masters of
writing, of the grand physician, and of the grand provisioner, down to
the gentlemen-of the palace.14 They had no fixed number, and might be as
many as several tens of persons. The palace attendants () and
regular palace attendants () were permitted to enter the forbidden
apartments [of the palace]. The department heads received [government]
business for the masters of writing. The inspectors of officials were
permitted to recommend the application of the law [to delinquent officials].
The mounted attendants without specified appointment rode along with the
imperial chariot.

[The office of serving in the palace (chi-shih-chung )] was

also a concurrent office. Those to whom this title was given were perhaps
grandees, erudits, or gentlemen-consultants. They had charge of
paying attention to [imperial] questions and of replying to them. Their rank
was next below that of the regular palace attendants and the palace
[attendants within] the Yellow Gate. There were those serving from the
Yellow Gate (chi-shih Huang men) whose rank was next below21 that of
Chiang 22 and grandees (ta-fu). All [the foregoing] was according to the
Chin [dynastys] institutions.
Hs I9A, 13b-14a


The chief commandants of the imperial equipage are stated to have

numbered three (in a work on Han offices {Han guan } quoted by Li
Hsien in a note to HHs T. 25.6b; cf. XIV Bb, viii and n. 8). One of them
drove the imperial chariot of state (HFHD, I.n. 2 {sic!}). Imperial relatives
and intimates were given this concurrent office (Hssc 5A.32a).

As the chief commandants of attendant cavalry imperial relatives and

intimates were usually appointed. It was a concurrent office (Hs 68: 21a).
While there was no fixed number for these chief commandants, there are
said to have been five them (a work on Han offices {Han guan }
quoted by Li Hsien in a note to Hs T. 25, 6b; cf. XIV Bb, viii and note 9).

The attendant within the palace was a concurrent title, possession of

which enabled one to enter freely the imperial quarters of the palace and
wait upon the emperor. It was considered a higher title than that of
department head (Hs 68.24a), and admitted one to intimate contact with
the emperor.
The palace attendants were originally, in Chin times, clerks of the
imperial chancellor who went about in the palace hall. In Han times they
had no fixed number, being as many as several tens. The office of the shih
chung had been in existence ever since the beginning of earlier Han. At
the time of Emperor Wu, Yen Chu ([]) and Chu Mai-chen ,
while holding this position, were entrusted with political influence and both
planned and directed the military campaign against the southern
barbarians. This was the beginning of the officials interference in political
affairs. Later on, Wei Ching, Ho Ch-ping, Ho Kuang and Chin Jih-ti, who
all came from this office and acquired such a power that they superseded
the Imperial Chancellor. (Sssi 2.9a; cf. also Hssc 5A.33b). From this time
on, the position was often extended to favorite ministers whatever their
position (Hssc 5A.33a). These facts bear witness to Ying Shaos remark
that these officials among all the officials were the closest one to the
emperor (Hki A.16b).
The functions of this official as seen by Y Shih-nan were:
1. To attend the emperor in his private life (cf. also Han-chiu-I B.1a).

2. To ride with the emperor on excursions. One bore the imperial seal of
Chin which had been secured by Emperor Kao and was called the seal
that transmits the state () and the sword with which Emperor Kao cut
the snake in two (HFHD I.34; cf. also HHs 19.1b.).
3. To answer questions.
4. To transfer orders to the ministers.
5. To summon ministers.
6. To write documents.
7. To give advice.
8. To explain the Classics to the Emperor. (Ptsc
They were ranked at 1000 piculs (Hki, quoted in Li Hsiens note to
HHs T. 26.4b; CHc 12.3a; Tpyl 219.3b. A note to Tlt 8.3a however states
that they were equivalent to 3000 piculs. Tpyl 219.3a quotes Ssu-ma
Piaos Hs Han shu stating that they were equivalent to 2000 piculs. One
of them was named as their superviser (pu-she). (Tung Pas [fl. 220]
Ta-Han Y-fu Chih, quoted in Tlt 8.3a; HHs T. 26.5a. Cf. also Ptsc; XIV Bb, xv and n. 10.)

Department heads , eastern department heads , and western

department heads were concurrent titles given to imperial intimates
(Hs 59.10a; Hspc 59.9b; Hs 60.2b, 54.22a). They attended upon the
emperor daily, and received memorials for the emperor. They were ranked
at 2000 piculs (Hcy 4a, b; HHs T. 25.8a; cf. XIV Bb, viii and n. 16).

Inspector of officials was a concurrent title given to the same class of

courtiers as was palace attendant. This title permitted one to impeach
officials just as the palace assistant secretary did (Ying Shao in a note to
Hs 10.2b).

Cavalryman without specified appointment was also a concurrent

title for the same sort of courtiers. These people bore credentials and
surrounded the imperial chariot (Hcy, quoted in Sc 101.3a, 4.11b; Hki,

Regular palace attendant was a similar concurrent title. These

parsons were permitted to enter the forbidden apartments. In the Former
Han period, virile persons were given this position. The Later Han dynasty
gave it to eunuchs (Wang Hsien-chien, Hspc 19A.24a; Hcy A.2a, b; Hki
A.18b. Cf. XIV Bb, xv, and n. 13.

Cf. XIV Ba, 3, n. 1, 6 and n. 1.

Cf. XIV Ba, 7 and n. 3.


There were many chief commandants in the government. Cf. XIV Ba, 12,
XIV Ba, 20 and n.3; XIV Ba, 21 and n.1; XIV Ba, 23 and n.1, 9; XIV Ba, 24 &
n. 1; XIV Ba, 28 and n. 1, 2.

Cf. XIV Ba, 14 and n. 3.


Cf. XIV Ba, 6 and a. 9.


Cf. XIV Ba, 14 and n.6.


Cf. XIV Ba, 7 and n.16.


Serving in the palace was a title given to certain officials of all

ranks, from the highest down to those mentioned in the text. This title
permitted them to enter the palace freely and wait upon the emperor.
These persons participated in deciding government policies, so that their
power might be greater than that of the imperial chancellor. (Hktw 4.12a; cf.
XIV Bb, xv, and n. 22).

Cf. XIV Ba, 7 and n. 3.


Cf. XIV Ba, 6 and n. 19.


Cf. XIV. Ba, 7 and n. 13.


Cf. XIV Ba 14 and n. 25.


Those serving from the Yellow Gate were almost surely the
same as gentlemen-in-attendance at the Yellow Gates and the
gentlemen-in-attendance serving from the Yellow Gate
(which latter was probably their full title). cf. Hs 30, 23a (Hspc I9A :25a1a);
Hs 93,9b (Hktw 3:11b ). They were close intimates of the emperor, such
as Kung Kuang, Tung Hsien, Liu Hsiang, and Liu Hsin (Hs 81.17b, 93.9b;
Tlt 5.5a). They were not eunuchs (?) Every evening they faced the doors
of the imperial apartments [as they left] and bowed, hence they were called
evening gentlemen (Hki quoted by Li Hsien in a note to HHs A
9.1b. ).

Wang Hsien-chien remarks that the is an error for , to correspond

to the phrasing in the preceding sentence (Hspc 19A.25a).

Wang Nien-sun states that after the character has dropped out.
This missing character is found in a quotation of this sentence in Ywlc
40.31a and Hs 68:24b.

Government XIV Ba, 29.

Noble Ranks
Of the noble ranks, the first was government yeoman (),1 the
second was distinguished accomplishment (shang-tsao ).2 The third
was plume and ribbon ornamented harness (), the fourth was
illustrious conscript (), the fifth was grandee (), the sixth was
official grandee (), the seventh was government grandee (),
the eighth was government chariot (), the ninth was fifth rank grandee
(), the tenth was chief of the multitude on the left (), the
eleventh was chief of the multitude on the right (),11 the twelfth was
chieftain of conscripts on the left. (),12 the thirteenth was chieftain of
conscripts in the center (),13 the fourteenth was chieftain of conscripts
on the right () the fifteenth was considerably distinguished
accomplishment (),15 the sixteenth was greatly distinguished
accomplishment (),16 the seventeenth was chief of the multitude
riding a quadriga (ssu-che ),17 the eighteenth was grand chief of
the multitude (), the nineteenth was marquis of the imperial
domain (), and the twentieth was full marquis (). All the
foregoing were Chin institutions, for the purpose of rewarding signal
deeds and toil.
Full marquises had a golden seal with a purple seal-ribbon. In order
to avoid the personal name of Emperor Wu, [which was Che] they were
called tung-hou 21 or lieh-hou [The title of] the prefect (ling) or
chief (chang) of the states from which they received income was changed
to chancellor (hsiang ). They also had a household sub-steward (
),23 grandees at the gates () and bodyguards ().25
Hs 19A.14a-b

This section concerning noble ranks, which would fit better into a later
section, is presented here for two reasons: (1) the noble fiefs came to be

little different from other parts of the empire and their holders became at
most mere government pensioners. The administration of these regions
was integrated into the rest of the governmental system, so that an
understanding of them is necessary to understand the provincial
government. (2) More important, up to this point this section constitutes a
translation in order of Hs 19A and it is better to present a complete
translation of a large passage than to break the continuity by omitting one
passage from an otherwise continuous translation from an important
Liu Shao (fl. 196f 240) in his Institutions Concerning Noble Ranks
(quoted by Liu Chao in a note to HHs T. 28, 15b-16a), explains the
noble ranks as follows: In the [Tso] Commentary to the Spring and
15,17{re fers to lines o f Chinese text in Legge}
Autumn (Legges trans., 451
) there is
[mentioned] a Leader of the Multitude() Pao, [who in 562 B.C. led the
Chin troops to a great victory over Chin; cf. n. 10, 11]. When the Viscount
of Shang. (Shang Yang), administered the government [of Chin], he
completed its institutions, making 18 steps [in noble rank], which, together
with Kuan-nei marquis and full marquis make altogether 20 steps.
His institutions made use of ancient ideas. Anciently, when the Son.
of Heaven was with the army, the administration was in the hands of the six
high ministers ching . . . so he summoned the six high ministers and the
grandees (ta-fu) to the army to be its leaders. . . . [The state of] Chin
made use of these ancient institutions. Those who were with the army were
granted noble ranks of various steps. Those whom they led were all
conscript (keng) troops. When those who distinguished themselves were
granted noble ranks, it was after the pattern of army officers. From the first
noble rank to the fourth, that of illustrious conscript (pei-keng ), were
all yeomen (shih ). From [the noble rank of] grandee (ta-fu) to the fifth
rank [above], that of fifth rank grandee (wu-ta-fu), [these noble ranks] were
likened to the grandees. This ninth step [in noble rank, i.e., fifth rank
grandee] made use of the idea of the nine emblems [cf. Clcs, 18.11a-12b =
Biot, TL, I.428-430]. From the chief of the multitude on the left to the grand
chief of the multitude, the notion is that of the nine high ministers. . . . Thus
these ranks of high ministers, grandees, and yeomen all imitated ancient
court institutions, but with different names, because they represented a
militarized state. Anciently, they fought with chariots. One army chariot had
72 foot-soldiers, who were divided on the left and right into wings. In the
chariot, the grandee was on the left, the driver was in the center and a
brave man () was on the right, altogether 75 persons [to each chariot].

The first rank was government yeoman . A foot soldier who had
a noble rank was [called] a government yeoman. In our translation, the
meaning of kung is taken from that in kung-sheng; cf. n. 8.
These noble ranks date from Chin times, very probably being
instituted by Shang Yang (d. 338 B.C.), although many of these names are
older. Shang Yang took titles that had been used before his time and
made of them a hierarchical system. The Han merely took over this system.
Shang-tzu, roll 5, fascicle = Duyvendak 28, 295, says, Those who
have noble rank request that those who have no noble rank should act as
their bodyguard. For each step [in noble rank] they request [the service of]
one person. Whether this practice was continued in Han times, we do not
know. Ibid., 2b = Duyvendak 28, 300 adds, Those who have noble ranks
from the second step in rank and upwards, if they are to be mutilated for
crime, are [merely] degraded in noble rank. From the first step and lower, if
they are to be mutilated for crime, they are [merely] maimed. Maiming was
only the third of the five mutilating punishments, so that the first rank
brought mitigation of mutilation, while the second and higher brought
exemption from mutilation. This practise of commuting criminal punishment
to degradation or loss of noble rank was continued in the Han period (Hs
24A.12b). In 19 B.C. it was ordered that noble ranks could be purchased
for 1000 cash per step (HFHD, II.398). Thereafter they lost much of their

Lin Shao (in Ibid.) explains, The second noble rank was distinguished
accomplishment . Tsao is to be accomplished . An accomplished
man was reported to the minister of civil administration (ssu-tu), [so] is
called a distinguished accomplishment. Although he had this name, yet he
was foot-soldier.
Possession of this rank exempted its holder from mutilating
punishment (cf. n.1; HFHD, I.17.6). In 179-157 B.C., Chao Tso
persuaded Emperor Wen to grant noble titles to those who provided grain
at the frontier. This rank was given for 600 piculs of grain (Hs 24A.13a
[Hspc 24A.14b]).

Li Shao explains (Ibid.), The third noble rank is plume and ribbon
ornamented harness tsan-niao . He rode a quadriga. Yao-niao (cf.
HFHD II.110, n. 35.10) was an ancient famous horse. When one rides a
quadriga, its shape is like a tsan, hence he is called a tsan-niao. Yen

glosses, A horse girdle with silk ribbon is called a niao. Tsan-niao means
that he ornamented such a horse. Shen Chin-han {Hssc 5A, 36b) takes
tsan to mean rapid, and concludes that a pair of horses yoked abreast
was called a tsan. This sounds rather far-fetched, since Liu Shao states
that the allusion is to a quadriga, not a biga. As for the character tsan , in
Sc 126,15a, it is explained by Chang Shou-chieh as denoting a plume
worn in the bonnet.

Liu Shao (Ibid.) explains, The fourth noble rank is illustrious conscript
. An illustrious conscript is on the right in the chariot [cf. n.1 above] and
is not again like the other conscript troops. This explanation seems to
strain considerably the negative meaning of the first word. Yen glosses
straightforwardly It means that he did not take part in conscript service.
But Yen contradicts himself in a note to Hs 24B.7a, With this [rank, i.e.,
fifth rank grandee] and upwards, [people] are first exempted from forced
service. He is echoing Hs 24A.12b, The reception of as much as the
noble rank of fifth rank grandee and above exempts one person. In 202
B.C. Emperor Kao exempted all his veterans holding the rank of
government grandee and lower (HFHD, 1.104 ff.), which would have been
no reward if the third step carried exemption. Shen Chin-hao (HSCC
5A.37a) protests Yens first interpretation, without noting Liu Shaos earlier
one. It is much simpler to take here as meaning pei with which word it
was anciently interchanged. (Dubs).

Liu Shao (Ibid.) explains, The fifth noble rank is grandee . The
grandee was the one on the left in the chariot (cf. n.l). In Han times,
grandee was not only a noble rank, but also part of the title of certain.
officials (XIV Ba, 3 and n. 2; 7 and n.3), the name for certain grades of
courtiers (XIV Ba, 7 and n.3) and a polite appellation (WH 45.2b).

The official grandee was also called a state grandee (LSCC 24.6b
= Wilhelm FH, 425f; Hs

The government grandee was also called a seventh rank grandee

(HFHD, I.104; Hs 39.7b; 41.8b, 10a) and ranking grandee
(Hs and Wen Yings note).

Liu Shao (Ibid.) explains, The noble rank of [army) officers and common
people was not permitted to go beyond that of government chariot .
[He who possessed this rank] secured credit with his lord like a brother or
half-brother. Hence a government chariot was the highest noble rank for
an army officer. Although [its possessor) might not enter battle, he secured
the chariot of a government soldier, hence he was called a government
chariot. Yen glosses less exactly, It means that he was permitted to ride
the governments chariots. This riding was not then in a post chariot, but
in a battle chariot. The person granted this title had his name reported to
his king or emperor, so that it was called the noble rank reported to the
[highest] superior . (Sc 95.1b = Hs 41.1b).

The title of fifth rank grandes was named from the circumstance
that the five ranks from the fifth on were all considered ranks of grandees,
and this was the fifth one. The fifth rank grandee was originally a military
leader. CKTNC 5.27b, 6.76b; Sc 5.33a = MH, II.91; Sc 8.9b = MH, II.340 =
HFHD, I.44. A person who had this rank was not considered as belonging
to the common people , but was an official . Emperor Kao allowed him
to wear the hat of the imperial house of Liu (HFHD, I.120). Shang Yang
enacted that he should receive the taxes from an estate of three hundred
families (Shang-tzu 5.2a = Duyvendak 28, 298). This rank exempted its
possessor from taxes and conscript: service (Hs 24 A.12b). Emperor Wen
enacted that those who contributed 4000 piculs of grain for the frontier
should be given this noble rank (Hs 24A, 13a). They were exempted from
being shackled HFHD I.176. In 73, 65, 42 B.C. and A.D. 4, this rank was
given to officials ranking at 600 piculs (HFHD, It, 209, 229, 321; Hs 12, 7a).
When the imperial heir-apparent was capped in 58 B.C , this noble rank
was granted to the heirs of full marquises (HFHD, II.247). In 15 B.C. those
who had contributed 300,000 cash for the relief of famine sufferers were
granted this noble rank together wiith a promotion in official rank or a
vacancy as a gentleman (HFHD, II.403-4).

The chiefs of the multitude on the left and on the right were the same as
the lieutenant or major generals on the left and on the right
15,17{refers to the lines in Legges Chinese text}
(Liu Shao, Ibid.) In Tso-chuan (Legge 451
it is recorded that two chiefs of the multitude (shu-chang) led the troops of
Chin to a great victory over Chin in 562 B.C. After Ho Ch-pings

successes in 121 B.C., Emperor Wu granted his colonels (hsiao-wei) the

rank of chief of the multitude on the left. From chief of the multitude on the
left and upwards, to the grand chief of the Multitude, [these ranks
were all those of high ministers and the grandees were all generals
(chiang-chn). . .

For the meaning of chief of the multitude on the right , cf. n.10.
Upon the occasion of the appointment of the imperial heir apparent in 143,
67, and 47 BC., this rank was conferred upon the high ministers, i.e., all
those ranking at fully 2000 piculs (HFHD II.58, 221, 308; cf. also I.326).

Concerning chieftain of conscripts on the left , Yen glosses,Keng

(conscripts) means that he controlled and led conscript soldiers . He
governed them while doing their forced service. For the duties of a keng,
cf. HFHD, II.176-7. In 73 B.C., this rank was granted to officials ranking at
2000 piculs and chancellors of marquises, on the occasion of an
auspicious portent (HFHD, II.209).

The noble title of chieftain of conscripts in the center was granted to

high ministers (i. e., those ranking at fully 2000 piculs) on the occasion of
auspicious portents in 65 B.C. (HFHD, II.229). The meanings of left,
center, and right in these titles for chieftain of conscripts are evidently
taken from the positions in the ancient war chariot (cf. n.1). Liu Shaos
account, with the grandee (the lord) on the left, however, represents the
practice in eastern China, especially in Lu, whereas in the state of Chin
and in the Han period, the reverse was the case, the right being the higher;
cf. HFHD, I.123, n. 1.

For the meaning of chieftain of conscripts on the right , cf. nn.12, 13.
This rank was granted in 15 B.C. to those who had contributed grain in a
famine to the amount of 1,000,000 cash worth, also giving such persons a
position ranking at 300 piculs, or for officials, promotion three steps in rank
(HFHD, II.403).

On the considerably distinguished accomplishment , and the

greatly distinguished accomplishment , Yen glosses, It means that

they controlled the yeomen who were distinguished accomplishments. I
suspect, however, that Yen is guessing (Dubs).

The title of greatly distinguished accomplishment in Han times

was in Chin times called great good accomplishment (Sc 5.24a =
Mh II.65; Sc 68.5a Duyvendak, 28, 17; Sc; Shang-tzu 5.2a =
Duyvendak, 28, 298).

Concerning chief of the multitude riding a quadriga , Yen

glosses, It means that he rode a chariot with a team of four horses and
was the chief of a multitude .

Liu Shao (Ibid.) explains, The grand chief of the multitude was a
general-in-chief . Emperor Wen granted this noble rank to persons
who transported to the border 12,000 piculs of grain (Hs 24A.12a).

Liu Shao (Ibid.) explains,, [The title of] marquis of the imperial domain
made use of the ancient idea of viscounts (tzu) and barons (nan)
within the royal domain. [The state of] Chin had its capital west of the
mountains, [which region was called Kuan-chung, lit. within the passes,
the present southern Shensi], and considered that [the region] within the
passes (kuan-nei)was the royal domain. Hence it called [these nobles]
marquises of the imperial (of royal) domain. Yen glosses, They lived in
the capital domain and had no states or estates . The concept of a
royal or imperial domain came from Chou times and was an anachronism
after the establishment of an empire (221 B.C.). In ancient times, because
of difficulties of communication, the direct rule of the king extended only to
a region about his capital. A marquisate within this royal domain had no
territorial fief, but consisted merely in the reception of the taxes from a
certain number of households. He was thus merely a pensioner of the
crown with a high rank. HHs T. 28, 15b states, Those who were marquises
of the imperial domain had no lands. They were given income to the
amount of the land tax from number of common people [specified in their
ennoblement] in the county from which their income came. Each [noble]
had a specified number of households as the limit [of the income which he

should receive]. Because there was a definite locality from which a

marquis of the imperial domain received his income, he could be called the
marquis of that place, for which practice there is only one example, Sc
6.17b = MH. II.149, quoting the inscription of 219 B.C. Here the term
lun-hou is used to denote this rank, and Ssu-ma Cheng explains that
it was lower than full marquis.

Full marquis or marquis ( or or ) was, unlike the lower

noble ranks, a genuine feudal rank at the beginning of Former Han times,
although the feudal nature of this rank evaporated within a century.
When, on Feb. 13, 201 B.C. , Emperor Kao first formally enfeoffed
full marquises, he split tallies (HFHD, I.111), made oaths, with a red writing
upon an iron certificate, a golden box and a stone chest, kept in the
imperial ancestral temple (HFHD, I.146). They were authorized to rule their
fiefs, appoint their own officials, and levy taxes (HFHD I.142).
But the imperial government gradually took over these feudal duties,
making the full marquises, like the marquises of the imperial domain,
merely pensioners, deriving their income from a certain region. The
marquises found the capital so attractive that they mostly lived there,
merely taking the revenue from their estates. In 179 B.C. , Emperor Wen
ordered them to go to their states (HFHD, I.240), but this order was
evaded (HFHD, I.246), so in 143 B.C., Emperor Ching rescinded that order.
In 40 B.C. (HFHD I.22) another attempt was made to get them to leave the
capital, but intrigue defeated it. In 67 B.C., less than half the marquises
were living at their states (HFHD, I.327, n. 9.1). Sending a marquis to his
own state came to be form of punishment (Hs 45.20b; 79.11b). They were.,
however, all required to attend the imperial court regularly (twice a year),
either in person or by a representative (HFHD, I.157, 158).
They received both the land tax and the poll tax from their estates
(Hktw 5.2a). Out of their receipts, they had to pay to the emperor, at New
Years time, 63 cash per person in their state per year, (HFHD, I.130) and,
at the autumn worship of the imperial ancestors in the eighth month, four
taels of gold per thousand persons in their estates, for the support of that
worship (HFHD, II.127). In addition, there was an inheritance tax, by which
the size of a marquiss estate was reduced 20% at the death of a marquis
(HFHD, II.217, n.7.9). The governor of the department in which a marquiss
state was located moreover probably appointed the marquis` chancellor,
just as the imperial government appointed kings chancellors, so that

marquises came to have no say concerning the government of their states.

Four times a year the marquises, moreover, received subventions from the
government for their expenses. Cf. HFHD, I.195, n. 2 = Hs 3.2a.
Emperor Kao made an agreement with his followers that only those
who had distinguished themselves in battle should be made marquises.
(Hs 99A.19a; 40.29a) But this provision was relaxed after Emperor Kaos
followers had passed away. Imperial maternal relatives, especially the
emperors eldest maternal uncle, were regularly ennobled as marquises.
This practice began in 179 B.C., when Emperor Wen made his maternal
uncle a marquis (HFHD, I.236). The imperial chancellor, if he was not
already a full marquis, was ennobled (Kung-sun Hung was the first, in 124
B.C.; Hs 58.6a). Finally Emperor Ai even managed to get his catamite,
Tung Hsien, ennobled although there was much opposition in the court (Hs
93.10b, lla).
The Han laws were severe, and marquises were dismissed from their
noble titles and estates for crime. Such punishments were frequent. The
climax came in 112 B.C., when Emperor Wu dismissed 106 marquises at
the same time, for having offered insufficient amounts of gold at the
autumn court (HFHD, II.80, 126-128).
Marquises exercised an influence upon the government in that they
took part in the court discussions (HFHD, I.129, 195, 228, 229, 262, etc.).
The emperor frequently made grants to them (HFHD, I.201, 332; II.154,
158, 234, 256, etc.).Shan-y of the Hsiung-nu who surrendered to the
Chinese were made marquises (HFHD, II.249). Only full marquises could
marry an imperial princess (Hs 97A.19a).

The ranks of Chin are significant far beyond the realm of their
bearers mutual relations to each other. Their establishment in the above
form is part of the great social and political revolution which occurred in
China during the end of the Chin dynasty. There had been ranks long
before Chou and probably even before Shang (see Wittfogel, 41), but
these ranks were, at least since Shang, primarily based upon territorial
possession. They were feudal ranks. When during the fourth century B.C.,
Shang Yang reorganized the political order of Chin, replacing whatever
feudal features there had been by organs of a highly centralized
bureaucratic machine, the old landed nobility was replaced by a new
hierarchy of honorary ranks. This new order preserved only a few
remnants of the feudal heirarchy. The bearers of the higher titles might still

be bestowed with a certain region or towns yi , . But this yi differed from

the old fiefs in two ways: first it was very limited in size. According to the
Scs, it contained only three or six hundred families. Second, it was a shui-yi
, atax-paying yi. (Scs 5.2a; cf. Duyvendak 28, 298-299). This, in our
opinion,probably means that the holder of a certain rank received the
taxes from his yi over which he, however, had no political control,
meaning that he was merely a pensioner of the sovereign. Duyvendak
translates the sentence (Scs 5.2a) as meaning
there is presented a town of 300 families, or the taxes of three hundred
families (Duyvendak 28, 298). In view of the formula, shui-yi, which
precedes and follows the sentence, it seems advisable to explain the
passage as follows: there is presented a [tax paying] yi of 300 families
(meaning the taxes of 300 families of a definite place ), or else the taxes of
300 families (of an indefinite location). From the standpoint of the decay of
feudalism it is of little significance if some of the tiny regions were still
directly held by the new nobility, but the term shui-yi seems to indicate
that even these small yi were no longer real fiefs, but pseudo- or
quasi-fiefs only.
It must further be kept in mind that the new ranks were conferred for
military and agricultural (that is, economic, civil) achievements, rather
than for the hereditary possession of territory. The new institution had its
roots in the past (see Tscheppe 23, 121, n. 3), but it seems to have gained
its full momentum only during the last centuries of Chou. In spite of several
semi-feudal or quasi-feudal features which it still preserved in the
transitional period, it must have been a powerful device to weaken and
dissolve whatever feudal elements the society still contained (see
Duyvendak 28, 15; Wittfogel 35, 47).
The ranks of the hierarchy were not identical with the actual positions
which its bearers might have held in the military or administrative order of
Chin. They were given to men of merit, the lower ones to commoners and
the higher ones to persons of superior social status. The military
atmosphere of the growing state of Chin reflected itself in two ways: ranks
were often conferred as reward for military achievements; therefore they
often have an outspoken military connotation. In Western countries the
ennoblement generally followed the meritorious deed with a certain lag.
This obviously was the case in Chin too. When, in 359 B.C., the success
of Shang Yangs great reforms became obvious, he was raised only to the
rank of a tso shu chang (Sc 5.24a), that is to the tenth rank in the
hierarchy. Several years later, in 352, before he undertook a military

campaign, he received the rank of a ta liang tsao ( Sc 5.24a) which is

equivalent to the ta shang tsao, the sixteenth rank of the hierarchy. Shortly
before the death of hie patron, King Hsiao, he was made a lieh hou,
entitled Lord Shang (Sc 5, 25a). Since the Shih chi declares the lieh
hou to be identlcal with the ch hou, the rank bestowed upon Shang Yang
in 340 B.C. was the highest within the honorary hierarchy, which as this
example allows, by the way, actually and probably, also formally,
comprised all the twenty later ranks already at this time.
Chavannes and Duyvendak assume that Shang Yang created only
the first eighteen ranks, while the titles of the kuan nei hou and ch hou
were added by Chin Shih Huang (Chavannes Mh II, 528; Duyvendak 28,
61ff). Tscheppe enumerates twenty ranks of which he ascribes all to the
time of Shang Yang. He claims Ssu-ma Chien as the author of this list. We
have not been able to discover it in the text of the Shih chi.
A list of all twenty names is offered instead in a note to Sc 5.25a, by
Pei.Yin (fl. 465-472), who quotes as source the Han shu and considers
the whole hierarchy to be a creation of Shang Yang. The latter point is
somewhat qualified by Tscheppe who traces the name of one rank back to
the fifth century B.C. and assumes that Shang Yang reorganized, rather
than created, the honorary hierarchy (Tscheppe 23, 121, n. 3). With this
remark of his, Tscheppe touches upon a point which has been elaborately
treated and proved by leading Chinese scholars (Cf. Hssc 5A.36a-42b).

On the term che hou , the original title of the full marquis, Yen
glosses, It means that the rank of this nobility enables free communication
with the Son of Heaven. Tung was the synonym used in that gloss for

To honor the marquis, the title of the official governing the county
(hsien)district (hsiang), or canton (ting) in which the marquiss state was
located was changed to chancellor hsiang , But the marquis received
income, not necessarily from the whole county or canton, only from the
specified number of households in it.


HHs T. 28.15a declares, The chancellor ruled the people like a prefect
(ling) or chief (chang), but did not act as a courtier [to the marquis]. He
however received the land tax and gave it to the marquis in accordance
with the limitations of the number of households [in the rnarquiss fief].
Marquises had no steward (chia-ling) but only a household
sub-steward . The heir-apparent and princesses had stewards (XIV Ba,
12 and n. 5; XIV Ba 18 and n. 3.). HHs T. 28.15a states, The household
sub-steward had charge of waiting upon the marquis and of directing
matters in his household.

For grandees at the gates , cf. XIV Ba, 16 and n. 3. They were
also appurtenances of the imperial heir-apparent.

For the bodyguard , cf. X1V Ba, 16 and n. 4. They were also
appurtenances of the imperial heir-apparent. Marquises also had ushers
(hsing jen) and outriders (hsien-ma); cf. XIV Bb, xxviii, para. 7.

Government XIV Ba, 30

The Vassal Kings

The vassal kings () were first established by Emperor Kao.

They had golden royal seals with pale green seal-ribbons. They had
charge of ruling their states.
They had a grand tutor (),3 who acted as coadjutor to the king, a
clerk of the capital region (),4 who ruled the common people of the
state, a commandant of the capital ()5 who had charge of military
duties, a royal chancellor ()6 who directed the various offices, the
various high ministers (ching ),grandees (), and offices at the
capital, like those in the Han [ imperial] court.7
In the fifth year of the middle [part of his reign] (145 B.C.), Emperor
Ching ordered that vassal kings should not be permitted again to rule their
states, and that the Son of Heaven would establish officials for [those
states]. He changed [the title of their], royal chancellors to be chancellors
() and did away with the offices of grandee secretary(),
commandant of justice (),10 privy treasurer (),11 superintendent of
the royal house (),12 and erudit (),13 and in the offices of the
grandees (),14 internuncios (), and gentlemen (),15 the chiefs ()
and assistants () were all to reduce their regular number. Emperor Wu
changed the Han [imperial] prefect] of the capital region to be
governor-general of the capital ( ), (140 B.C.) his commandant of
the capital () to be the bearer of the gilded mace (),17 and his
prefect of the gentlemen-of-the-palace () to be superintendent of
the imperial household),18 hence [he left the titles of these officials]
in the states of the kings as they had previously been. He reduced [the
rank] of their prefect of. the gentlemen-of-the-palace (lang-chung ling) to
be ranking at 1000 piculs. (8 B.C.) He changed [the title] of their grand
keeper of equipages () to be coachman () also ranking him at
1000 piculs. In the first year of [the period] Sui-ho, Emperor Cheng did
away with their clerks of the capital region and changed [the
administration], ordering that their chancellors should rule the common
people like the grand governors of the departments, and that their
commandants of the capital [should have duties] like those of the chief
commandants of the departments.21

Hs 19A.14a-15b

When Emperor Kao first appointed vassal kings , it was after the
model set by Hsiang Y, who continued the feudal tradition of Chou times.
Hence the territory of these kings was large, even extending to a thousand,
and the bureaucracy in their courts was given the same titles and ranking
(salaries) as in the Han court. But Emperor Kao was extremely fearful of
rebellion, and, before his death, all the kingdoms belonging to those not of
the Liu imperial house, except one (that of Chang-sha, which was
unimportant) were ended. Thereafter the imperial court appointed each
kings royal chancellor (cheng-hsiang), but the king appointed his own
grandee secretary and lesser bureaucrats (HHs T. 28, 11a).).
The rebellion of the seven kingdoms in 154 B.C., however, brought
to a head the movement for the lessening of the power of the vassal kings,
which far-sighted ministers of the imperial court had long been urging. The
imperial court now appointed all the officials of the royal courts, so that
these kings also became pensioners of the imperial court, residing in
territories nominally belonging to them, but actually out of their control. To
emphasize this change, many of these ministerial offices were done away
with. In 104 B.C., Emperor Wu changed the titles of the imperial ministers
in order to distinguish them from the officials in the royal courts, who
retained the old titles. This procedure is detailed in the text. At the same
time, large kingdoms were reduced in size, by condemning the king for
crime and reducing his kingdom in lieu of punishment, or by using part of a
deceased kings territory for marquisates in which to enfeoff the brothers
of the new king. The result was that when Wang Mang usurped the throne,
none of the kings of the imperial house rebelled against the imperial court.
The vassal king thus became merely the highest rank in the nobility, like
the marquises, but ranking higher.

Ju Shu glosses, Li is green. But Chin Shao glosses, Li is the name of

a plant (arthraxon ciliaris, Beauv. , acc. to Read, 36, #732]. It is produced
in Ping-chang county of Lang-ya [department; the present An-chiu ,
in eastern Shantung; Ytc 171, 7a]. It is like the common mugwort and can

dye things green, so it is used for the name of the seal-ribbon. Yen
approves the latter interpretation.

For the grand tutor, cf. XIV Ba, 4 and n.1. HHs T. 28, 11a says,The tutor
had charge of leading the king in accordance with goodness and proper
conduct like a teacher. He did not act as a courtier [or subject of the king].

For the Prefect of the capital, cf. XIV Ba, 22 and n. 1.

For the Commandant of the capital, cf. XIV Ba, 15 and n.l.

For the Royal chancellor (the same title as imperial chancellor; Dubs
translates both as lieutenant chancellor), cf. XIV. Ba, 1 and n. 1.

This statement means that there was a complete bureaucracy at each

royal court much as that enumerated in XIV Ba 1-26. According to Tu Yu,
the officials of the kingdoms of Han at the beginning of the dynasty, all held
the position of 2,000 piculs. The organization of officialdom was like that in
the imperial central government. Out of all the officials, the central
government appointed for the king only his Chancellor, the king selecting
the rest (T'ung tien 31/178e.) This statement by Tu Yu must be modified.
In 174 B.C. Chia I was made the grand tutor of the King of Liang by
Emperor Wu. Evidently then, this official could also be appointed by the

These chancellors , at first ranked higher than governors of

departments; in 46 B.C., Emperor Yan ranked them lower than these
governors (HFHD, II.310), thus indicating the relative unimportance of the
vassal kings.

For the grandee secretary, cf. XIV Ba, 3, and n.l.


For the commandant of justice, cf. XIV Ba, 10 and n. 1.


For the privy treasurer, cf. XIV Ba, 14 and n.l.


For the superintendent of the royal house (same title as the

superintendent of the imperial house), cf. XIV Ba, I2, and n.l.

For the erudits, cf. XIV Ba, 6 and n. 19-21 and n.11. King Hsien of
Ho-chien established erudits for the Mao text of the Book of Odes and the
Tso-chuan (Hs 53.1b), thus keeping alive fields of scholarship that ware
not in the imperial court (Hssc 5A, 46b).

For the grandees, cf. XIV Ba, 7, and n.3.


For the internuncios and gentlemen, cf. XIV.t Ba 7, and n. 4, J.


Cf. XIV Ba, 22 and n. 3.


Cf. XIV Ba, 1 5, and n. 2.


Cf. XIV Ba, 7, and n.1, 2. On the prefect of the gentlemen-of-the palace
in royal households, HHs T. 28, 13a states, "The prefect of the
gentlemen-of-the-palace had charge of the offices for those acting as
guards to the kings, [namely], the grandees and gentlemen-of-the-palace,
like the superintendent of the imperial household. When the [royal] privy
treasurers were done away with, the duties [of these ministers] were added
to [those of the prefects of the gentlemen-of-the-palace in royal courts]."

For the grand keeper of equipages (which is an inappropriate translation

since omitting the first word of the Chinese leaves a phrase translated into
English as "coachman"), cf. XIV Ba, 9 and n.l.
HHs T. 28, 13a, b, says "The [royal] coachman had charge of the
king's chariots and of driving, like the [imperial] grand keeper of


Cf. XIV Ba, 31 This change was made at the suggestion of Ho Wu the
grandee secretary, and Chai Fang-chin the chancellor. (Hs 86.4a) From
the memorial presented by these two ministers, the office of commandant
of the capital had been abolished before this year.
Tu Yu notes that from this time on, the commandant of the capital
and the chancellor often contradicted each other (T'ung tien 31.178c).
This might be a check system on the politics of the kingdom.
As to the question of the direct authority possessed by the
chancellor over the people of the kingdom, Shen Ch'in-han's studies differ
from the record in the-present text. Basing his argument on the Han shu,
he says that before this year, the chancellor had already had the power to
administer civil affairs (Hssc 5A 45a).

Cf. XIV Ba, 31

Government XIV, Ba, 31

The Inspecting Secretaries
The inspecting secretaries ()1 were Ch'in offices. The occupants
[each] had charge of supervising a province. The Han [dynasty] disliked
them. The imperial chancellor sent his clerks (shih ) separately to
inspect the [various) divisions ().2 They were not [however] regularly
In the fifth year of [the period] Yan-feng (106 B.C.), Emperor Wu for
the first time established circuit inspectors of regional divisions () to
have charge of upholding the imperial edicts and of investigating their
divisions [in accordance with certain] items. They were ranked at 600
picas and their number was thirteen.
In the first year of [the period] Shui-ho (8 B.C.), Emperor Ch'eng
changed their title to shepherds (mu ), ranking them at 2000 piculs. In
the second year of [the period] Chien-ping (5 B.C.), Emperor Ai restored
[their title] to be inspector. In the second year of [the period] Yan-shou,
[their titles] were restored to be shepherds.4
Hs 19A.15a, b

The Chin inspecting secretaries were not the same sort of officials as the
Han inspectors of regional divisions. (Hence they should not be called
"inspectors. ") The 41 Ch'in departments each had one inspecting
secretary, one governor and one commandant (HKY, quoted in HHspc
24.23b; Wang Ming_sheng in Hspc 19A.26b, 27a). The duties of these
inspecting secretaries are nowhere specified, We find them digging canals,
opening roads (Hs 64A, 6b) and leading troops (Hs 1A.7a = HFHD I.42).

While the circuits were by law named divisions , eleven of them were
called by the names of provinces , using the ancient name in the

"Tribute of Y," in the Book of History (Cf. I, A. Table II for these divisions).
In addition to the thirteen divisions, there was the circuit of the colonel
director in charge of investigation (an inappropriately translated title; cf.
XIV B, xxiii), who was in actuality the inspector in charge of the capital
departments (XIV B, xxi; Hs 86.7b).
Before 106, various methods were used to supervise the
departments. In 193 B. C. Emperor Hui sent secretaries to supervise
the departments; to investigate the conduct of law cases, etc. in
accordance with nine items. (They are, as enumerated in Yh 65.26a, 1)
lawsuits, 2) banditry, 3) illegal coinage, 4) unjust punishments, 5) unjust
service and taxation, 6) corrupt officials, 7) tyranny, 8) violation of
sumptuary laws, and 9) possession of prohibited crossbows having a
strength of more than ten piculs.) They were to memorialize their findings
in the tenth month (the beginning of the official year) and to return to their
inspection two months later. Later supervising and investigating
secretaries were appointed. It 167 B. C. because the secretaries
were not doing their duty, Emperor Wen sent clerks to the imperial
chancellor to inspect and also to oversee the supervising and
investigating secretaries (T'ung tien 32, 183c).

The inspectors of regional divisions were sent out by the imperial

court to travel about the departments and kingdoms and report to the
central government irregularities in the government of the departments or
kingdoms, in order that the imperial government might act. The inspectors
had thus no direct power to act, and their rank (600 piculs) was much less
than that of the officials whom they inspected (governors ranked at 2000
piculs). But their power of impeaching governors made them feared.
Ts'ai Chih's (fl. 133) Usages Concerning the Statutes and
Duties of the Han Offices (quoted by Li Hsien in a note to HHs T.
28.1b, 2a and by Yen Shih-ku in a note to Hs I9A.15a, b) says, "According
to the imperial edict in the older statutes (possibly that of Emperor Wu), the
inspectors are to separate and travel about among the departments and
kingdoms, to examine and investigate into the circumstances of their
government, to degrade or promote the capable and incapable, and to
settle lawsuits concerning injustices. They are to ask about matters
according to six items, and except for these six items, they are not to
consider any matters. The first item is: whether the fields or residences of

powerful clans or eminent persons have overstepped the regulations, or

the strong have oppressed the weak or the many have tyrannized over the
few. The second item is: whether [officials ranking at] two thousand piculs
[i.e., the governors of departments or chancellors of state] have failed to
uphold the imperial edicts or obey the statutes and institutions, whether
they have turned their backs upon the public interest and turned towards
their own private interests, whether they have set aside the imperial edicts
in order to do evil by exploiting the people and exacting taxes. The third
item is: whether [officials ranking at] 2000 piculs have failed to pay special
attention to doubtful law cases so that they have a reputation for cruelty
and putting persons to death and when they are angry they apply
punishment, but when they are pleased they reward lavishly, so that they
are molestatious and troublesome, injurious and tyrannical, injuring and
executing many people, with the result that they are hated by the common
people, mountains collapse and stones break apart, and evil auspices and
false sayings [appear]. The fourth item is: whether [the officials ranking at]
2000 piculs are unjust in selection of their subordinates, being
temerariously complaisant to those whom they love, neglecting those who
are worthy and favoring those who are stupid. The fifth item is: whether the
sons, nephews, brothers, and cousins of [the officials ranking at] 2000
piculs presume or rely upon the glory and power [of their relatives] and ask
favors in reliance upon [their relatives] from those whom [their relatives]
govern. The sixth item is; whether [the officials] ranking at 2000 piculs go
contrary to the public interest and servilely form cliques with their inferiors,
attaching themselves to the influential and powerful, accepting presents
and bribes, suppressing the application of the government's ordinances."
Possibly the edict quoted by Ts'ai Chih was quite early. Wang
Ming-sheng (Scssc 14.2b-3a) points out these six items all concern the
administration of departments, whereas we have ample evidence that the
inspectors also concerned themselves with the kingdoms, reporting illegal
activities and incipient rebellions of the vassal kings (Hs 38.12a, 47.4a,
63.9b, 20b 76.19b). They only concerned themselves about the higher
officials, those of 400 piculs and lower they did not investigate or report
(Hs 83.11b). At the spring equinox they regularly left the imperial capital to
go to their districts, at which time each of the departments and kingdoms in
their district sent an official to welcome them at the border (Hcy A.7a,
quoted in a note to Hs 6.24a). At the end of the calendar year, they
returned to the imperial capital, where they memorialized what they had

found (HHs T. 28.2b). When they had occupied their posts for nine years,
they were recommended for promotion to the post of a governor or
chancellor of a kingdom (Hs 83.17a), or they might be promoted to a
position in the central bureaucracy as a director of justice or some other
subordinate of the imperial chancellor (Hs 83.17a). In the imperial court,
the palace assistant secretary supervised the inspectors, recommending
their promotion or dismissal (XIV B, iii & n. 3; Hs 66.17b; 83.1b).

These changes in the rank and title of the inspectors were due to the
Confucian desire for a simple hierarchical governmental system. Ho Wu
and Chai Fang-chin memorialized that the rank of the inspectors was only
600 piculs, but they supervised officials ranking at 2000 piculs, so
proposed they be given the ancient titles of shepherds , and be ranked
at 2000 piculs (Hs 83.17a). Then Chu Po memorialized that with such a
high rank they had no incentive to efficient work, since they could hardly
expect promotion to any higher rank, hence they did little. (Hs 83.17a-b)
Under Wang Mang the Confucian influence finally triumphed. The
consequent ineffectiveness of governmental control over the local
governments, resulting in unchecked corruption, was probably responsible
in part for the failure and fall of Wang Mang.

Government XIV, Ba, 32

1) The Provincial Governors
2) The Provincial Commandants
3) Chief Commandants of Passes
4) Provincial Chief Commandants of Agriculture
The provincial governors () were Ch'in offices. [They] had
charge of ruling their province. They were ranked at 2000 piculs, and
[each] had [one] assistant. The provinces at the border also had chief
clerks (),4 who were in charge of the troops and horse. They were
ranked at 600 piculs.
In the second year of the middle [part of his reign] (148 B.C.)
Emperor Ching changed the title of [governors of provinces to] grand
governors ().
The provincial commandants () were Ch'in offices. [They] had
charge of aiding the governors (), of directing military matters, and of
duties with the armored troops (). They were ranked at equivalent to
2000 piculs.6 They had assistants (ch'eng), who were all ranked at 600
In the second year of the middle [part of his reign] (148 B.C.),
Emperor Ching changed the title [of the provincial commandant] to chief
commandant ().
The chief commandants of passes () were Ch'in offices.7 The
chief commandants of agriculture () and the chief commandants of
dependent states ()9 were both first established by Emperor Wu.

Hs 19A.15b

The Provincial governors , after 148 called grand governors ,

were satraps in complete charge of a given territory, subject only to the
reports made by the inspectors. HHs T. 28.5a = XIV Bb, xxiv par. 6, says of
them, "In all the departments and kingdoms, [the grand governors and
chancellors] had charge of ruling the people, promoting the worthy and
urging [the people] to glorious [deeds], deciding law-cases and restraining
the wicked. Regularly in the spring they travelled to the counties which
they controlled, urging the people to agriculture and sericulture, telling and
rescuing those who were in want. In the autumn and winter they sent
officials who would do no injustice to visit the various prisons, to decide
what law should apply to crimes, and to discuss and rank [the local officials
in order of efficiency]. At the end of the year, they sent an official [to the
imperial court] to present the [yearly] accounts, together with the filially
pious and incorrupt [persons] who were recommended [for the imperial
bureaucracy]. Departments with 200,000 persons recommended one
The grand governors had complete charge of everything in their
departments, including the life and death of the common people and
rewarding or punishing. When taxes were paid, the grand governors
received and stored them, and had the power on their own motion to use
these moneys and grain without waiting for authorization from the imperial
government. But at each of the four seasons they sent to the grand
minister of agriculture the account books showing the amount of money on
hand at the first of the month (HHs T. 26.1b; Hs 76.12b).
Death sentences imposed by grand governors had, however, to be
confirmed by the throne before they could be carried out (Hs 90, 6b),
although in special cases governors had the authority to execute a criminal
summarily (Hs 77.18b, 19a; Hs 90.16b, 17a; Ptsc 75.1b; Kytk
Yearly the grand governors ranked their subordinates. If the
governor wished to question the prefects or chiefs of counties, he ordered
them to come to his headquarters to the office of a department head. (Hs
78.15a, b). But governors did not rank their subordinates whose salaries
were as high as 1000 piculs; that was left for the inspectors to do (Hs
75.8b). If a prefect or chief were guilty of crime, the grand governor could
send out a proclamation dismissing and reprimanding him, and, when the
prefect or chief left his post, the grand governor could appoint a temporary
appointee to his place (Hs 83.2b-3b). If however a prefect were merely
incapable, the governor might memorialize the throne asking to have the

prefect transferred to another county (Hs 83.3b).

A grand governor could {not} serve in his native department (Hs
41.12a), and he was not allowed to employ persons from other
departments (Hs 75.8b). Members of the imperial clan could not serve as
officials in the three Ho departments and probably also not as
administrative officials anywhere in the departments supervised by the
colonel director in charge of investigation, because that region was
considered the private district of the emperor. (Hs 36, 37a)
Every year, in the eighth month, the grand governor held a grand
review of the troops of the department, at which there attended the chief
commandant of the department, the prefects, chiefs, and assistants, etc.
The troops were graded in horsemanship, archery, and boatmanship, and
were rewarded or punished accordingly. (Hcy A:5b; Hssc 5A, 51a; LHcSC
14.2a-b; CSTP 7.11a; CCHlCK).
Among the jurisdictions of the grand governor () was the power
to dispatch the provincial troops. Although the actual commanding of the
troops was the duty of the provincial commandant (), the right half of
the Tung-hu tally () was kept by the grand governor, and the left half
was sent to him by the central government when the latter wanted to
mobilize the provincial troops. This practice was initiated during the second
year of Han Wen-ti (). (Vide: Kamada Shigeo "Kan-dal no gun tuwei ni. tsuite " Ty Gakuh. Vol. III, No. 2,
pp. I90195.)

Two thousand piculs was only an average salary. As grand governor of

Ying-ch'uan, Huang Pa was ranked at only equivalent to 2000 piculs (Hs
89.5a), but after having been dismissed for a technical crime, he was later
reappointed to the same post with the rank of only 800 piculs (Hs 89.6b)
and, later because of his kindly administration, continued in the same post
with the rank of fully 2000 piculs (Hs 89.7a; cf. HFHD II.245, n. 18.2). Chi
Yen was made the governor of Huai-yang with the rank of a chancellor to a
vassal king (Sc 120.6b), which Ju Shun declares, in a note, was higher
than that of governor, being really 2000 piculs , while governors
were ranked at 2000 piculs . Ju Shun, in a note to Hs 8.18a = HFHD
II. 245, n. 18. 2, states, "Grand governors were entitled [officials ranking at]
2000 piculs, but there were some who occupied [this position with an
income of only] 1000 or 800 piculs. If the merits and virtue of the
occupants were especially excellent, then they secured the full rank [of
fully 2000 piculs]."

In 37 B. C. , a distinction was made between "large" and "small"

departments, those with 120,000 households or more being considered as
"large departments," and the grand governors of these large departments
were ranked at fully 2000 piculs (HFHD II.330). The departments of Ho-nei,
Ho-nan, and Ho-tung were at the same time ranked as large departments
Salaries were thus used to stimulate governors to efficiency.
Successful governors were rewarded by being promoted from small to
large departments (Hcy B. 6b), or by being promoted to governor of one of
the three Ho departments (mentioned in the preceding paragraph), or to
be one of the three adjuncts (who were governors of the three
departments at the capital, cf. XIV Ba, xxi & n.3, 8,15; Hs 89.15a). They
might be executed for cowardice (Hs 6.27b = HFHD II.107) or dismissed if
there was undue suffering in their department (Hs 8b.3a) or many robbers
(Hs 76.22b) or even if the persons they recommended for the imperial
bureaucracy proved unsuitable (Hs 90.18b).

The assistant had the duty of ruling the people (Hcy B.6a) and
supervised all the officials (Hs 76.22a).

"When the [department's) troops had to be put into the field, the chief
clerk led the chief commandant, millenaries, majors, and captains."
(Hcy B.6a.) This passage indicates the supreme control of the governor of
a department over all the military in that department (cf. also Ptsc 74, la).

This change in the titles of governors to be grand governors was

one of the steps in exalting the imperial bureaucracy over that of the
vassal kingdoms made soon after the rebellion of the seven states in 154
B.C. (HFHD I.20).

The provincial commandants , later entitled chief commandants

(for the same reason as the change mentioned in note 5), were assistants
to the governors. They had charge of military matters, as stated in the text.
They also were "to repress and be prepared against robbers and bandits"
(HHs T. 28.5b; Hs 90.7b), and to keep dowm powerful clans (Hs 90.6a).
Occasionally a chief commandant concurrently occupied the post of grand

governor (Hs 64A.14a; Hssc 5A.51b-52a).

The headquarters of the chief commandant was frequently at a
different locality in a department from that of the grand governor. Such
was the case with the three capital departments; cf. Sfht 1.2a. Other
departments were probably similarly organized; cf. Hs 28A.21a, 28a).

There was a chief commandant of the pass at the Han-ku Pass

(Hs 6.27b a HFHD II.106). The chief commandant of the department of
Hung-nung was moved in 101 B. C. to the Wu Pass and traffic through that
Pass was taxed to support its guard (HFHD II.103). There was also a Yang
Barrier (Hs, southwest of Tun-huang, Kansu, near Nan-hu; A.
Stein, Serindia II.618, and a Jade Gate Barrier (Hs 28B.3a), west of
Tun-huang, Stein., op. cit., II.726-8), which probably also had chief
commandants of these passes. Those travelling through the passes were
required to have passports (HFHD I.252, n.2; II.213, n. 6.5)

"At the provinces [along] the border there were established chief
commandants of agriculture to control the crops cultivated on the
garrison farms of the frontier garrisons (XIV Bb, xxiv, par. 7; HHs T. 28.5b).
These garrison farms were expected to support themselves, hence
needed such commander (cf. A. Stein, Serindia II.747-9). There were chief
commandants of agriculture in the departments of Shang-he (Hs 79.11a;
100A.1b) and at P'an-ho in the department of Chang-yeh (Hs 28B.3a).

For the chief commandants of dependent states, cf. XIV Ba, 20, and n. 3.

Government XIV Ba, 33

Local Government
The [positions of] prefects () and chiefs () of counties were both
Ch'in offices. They have charge of ruling their counties. [Counties] with ten
thousand households and more have prefects ranking from 1000 piculs to
600 piculs. [Counties] with less than ten thousand households have chiefs,
ranking from 500 piculs to 300 piculs. All of them have assistants and
commandants ranking frorn 400 piculs to 200 piculs. These are the chief
officials (). Below one hundred piculs there are the ranks of officials
whose salaries are received by tou () and accessory clerks ().
They are the minor officials ().
In general, ten hamlets or wards ()6 make one canton ().6a A
canton has a chief.7 Ten cantons make a district ().8 A district has a San
Lao (), an official with rank (yu-chih ) or a bailiff (), and a
patrol leader (). The San Lao have charge of instructing and morally
influencing [the people]. The bailiffs have the duty of hearing law-suits and
of collecting fu and shui . The patrol leaders patrol about to prohibit
thieves and robbers.
Counties in general, are a hundred li square.13 If the population is
dense, then [its size] was less; if [the population was] sparse, then it was
larger. The districts and cantons were also like this. All this was a Ch'in
Counties from which full marquises received their income are called
states (). Those from which empresses dowager, empresses, and
princesses received their income are called appanages (). Those
containing barbarians are called marches ().
Hs 19A.16a-b


On the salaries of prefects and chiefs , Hcy B.6b says, "In counties

the number of whose households is a full ten thousand, prefects [ranking

at] 600 piculs are established. For those with more, there are [prefects
ranking at] a thousand piculs. In.those the number of whose households
are not a full ten thousand, there are established chiefs [ranking at] 400 or
300 piculs." This practice was not however always followed. The Hky
(quoted in HHs T. 28.7a) says, "In the [parts of the empire along] the
borders on the three [sides] which were conquered by Emperor Hsiao-wu,
there are counties with [only] several hundred households, some of which
have prefects. In the Ching and Yang [Provinces] and in the seven
departments of Chiang-nan, there are only the three prefects at
Lin-hsiang (the present Changsha), Nan-ch'ang, and Wu (present
Soochow), yet in Jang (present Teng, Honan) in [the department of]
Nan-yang the soil is rich and the population is dense, being forty to fifty
thousand house-holds, yet it has [only] a chief. In the time of Emperor
Huan (in 158 A.D.) [the county of]Yang-an in [the department of] Ju-nan
became the appanage of his daughter, the Princess [of Yang-an], and the
title [of its chief ] was changed to be prefect. When the Princess died, [this
title] was again restored to its former one [of chief]. In this way [a title] is
tied to its original [form]. The common saying is that prefects and chiefs
are made in accordance with geography. For the degree of their ranks
there was however no visible record. Pan Ku was a learned Confucian and
[merelyl transmitted the account of one age, of which the foregoing is the
Prefects and chiefs had general charge of every phase of
government in their counties. If a county had to do transport service, the
prefect or chief directed the transport workers and ranked them in
efficiency. (Hs 58.10a) Criminal cases were reported in full to the prefect's
or chief's superior and the sentence was imposed by that superior (Hs
71.6a). But when it was necessary, a prefect or chief could order a
summary execution (Hs 76.21b; 77.16). These officials could however be
removed for executing an innocent person (Hs 90.15b) as they could when
bandits were troublesome (Hs 90.20a). Prefects and chiefs could
memorialize the throne (Hs 92.16a). They also had skilled soldiers and
cavalrymen, whom they led and brought in the eighth or ninth month to the
grand review of the grand governor (Hs 84.12b).
"According to the old institutions, the masters of writing selected,
installed, and sent out a prefect [of a government bureau or a county,
ranking at 600 piculs or more, probably acting for the emperor]. The

imperial chancellor selected a chief or chancellor [ranking at] 400 piculs

[down] to 200 picas. Officals [ranking at] 100 piculs in the imperial capital
were selected by the grand herald. Officials ranking at 100 piculs in the
departments or kingdoms were selected by [the officials ranking at] 2000
piculs." (Hcy B.7a)

HHs T. 28, 7b says, "The office of the assistant [had] the records. He
had charge of keeping informed about the [county] granaries and the jail."

Yen Shih-ku explains in our case, as managing the civil affairs of the
county. in contrast to means senior. Hence the was the senior
subordinate of the magistrate and the was the junior subordinate.

HHs T. 28.7b says, "As to commandants , in large counties there were

two, but in small counties there was [only] one." The commandant had
charge of a squad (t'un ) of 900 men." (Hcy, quoted by Ssu-ma Cheng in
a note to Sc 48.2b (Skkcks:48.6). The prefect or chief, assistant, and
commandant or commandants constituted the chief officials of the

The Hky (quoted by Yen Shih-ku) said, "The officials whose salaries were
received by tou received a montHly salary of 11 hu [ of grain]." Yen
continues, "One explanation is that the officials whose salary is measured
by tou did not receive fully I00 piculs [of grain] in a year. Counting by days
they received (shih) one tou as two sheng, hence they were tou-shih (lit.
receivers of [grain] by the tou.]"

The Hky (quoted by Yen Shih-ku) said, "Accessory clerks received

a monthly salary of eight hu [of grain]." The officials whose salaries were
received by tou and the accessory clerks were minor officials.

For the li , which term in a city is translated as a ward and in the

countryside as a hamlet, cf. HFHD I.50, n. 3. In the Book of Odes and in
Mencius, li () is understood to indicate living quarters. The Shuo-wen

chieh-tzu explains it as meaning to dwell, to reside. (Swctc 13B.81) So also

does Ying Shao (Note to HHc 28.9a). Mao Heng (3rd cent. B. C.)
commenting upon Chou conditions, assumes that twenty-five families
made a li (Mscs 4:2, 4b).
The Chou Li, which was edited at the end of Earlier Han but which contains
much pre-Han material, also assigns twenty-five families to a li ( Clcs
15.8a). Ying Shao, at the end of Later Han, fixes the number of families for
his time at 50 (Note to HHc 28.9a), and the author of the HHc, Ssu-ma
Piao, even assigns one hundred families to the li of Later Han (HHc 28.9a).
Thus there are several conceptions of the size of the li, an earlier one
which speaks of twenty-five families only, and the later ones which vary
between fifty to one hundred. These differences may be explained by
changes in the administrative categories, but we hesitate to do so since
other units continued to exist without change. (HHc 28.9a). If the li was the
smallest rural residential unit, that is, a village, then different figures
become suggestive. They then possibly either reflect certain changes in
the actual size of the average villages themselves or reveal the actual
situation of the non-uniformal character of the number of households of
one li or village at the time of Ch'in and Han.

The ting was not only the headquarters of the canton chief but was also
a place where the weapons were stored and the soldiers of the canton
were stationed. Different from the general canton, those located in the
suburb or inside of the city or of the imperial capital were called the tu-ting.
Ku Yen-wu assumes that the t'ing was not merely an administrative
building, but was also a fortification. Therefore, it was often attacked by
invaders and rebels (Jcl 22.16a-17a). Besides serving as an
administrative office and a local fortification, the ting also furnished a
shelter for the traveller as a hotel, as stated by Ying Shao. He says that the
word t'ing.literally means "to stay." It was a house where travellers came
and stayed over-night (note to HHc 28.9a).
In the view of Hibino Takeo (vide: .
, 14.1-2) was organized according to the
number of households while ting () was according to that of areas. In li
the registration of the people in the village was kept to use as the base for
the poll taxation and labor service while in ting that of the land was kept to
use as the base for the taxation on land. Although li and ting had quite
different functions to perform as indicated in the Han shu, they made up

the smallest units of Han government. It, however, was a number of ting,
not li, that made up the hsiang (). According to Hibino, li was even a
smaller division of the hsiang, but the numbers of the li in a hsiang had no
direct relation with the formation of the hsiang.

The chief of a canton controlled the people of the commune. "The

chief of the communes tested the [people's skill in archery. The patrol
leader patrolled about. The [county] commandant, the patrol leaders and
the chief of the canton were all expert in and prepared to use the five kinds
of weapons. The five weapons are the bow and crossbow, the pike, the
shield, the sword. and two-edged sword, and the cuirass." (Hcy B.6a).
(The quotation of this passage in Ptsc 79.9a lists these five as "the
crossbow, the pike, the sword, and sickle-cutlass, and the cuirass.") Cf.
also HFHD I.29, n.3) "Frontier soldiers, skilled soldiers and [marines from]
towered warships who were in their 56th year were [considered] aged and
superannuated, so were.dismissed and became ordinary people. They
returned to their fields and hamlets and the common people, in response
to an order, selected them to be the chiefs of their cantons." (Hcy B.6a) "In
ancient times (probably before the Han period, a canton had two servitors.
One was the father of the canton , (probably an earlier name for the
chief of the canton), who had charge of opening and closing [the gates of
the canton enclosure) and of sweeping and cleaning. The other was the
thief-catcher who had charge of pursuing and arresting robbers and
bandits. " (Quoted in a note to Hs 1A.4a; cf. HFHD I.33, and n. 2.) At the
frontier, a canton was expected to furnish and supply a company (tui ),
whose average effective strength was 150 men. (Stein, Serindia II, 748).

The district was the primary subdivision of a county.

The San Lao was expected to be the cultural and moral leader of the
people and an advisor to the local officials. In 205 B. C., Emperor Kao
ordered that "there should be recommended common people who were in
their fiftieth year or over, who had cultivated personalities and were able to
lead the multitude to do good, to be established as San Lao, one to a
district. One of the San Lao of the district was selected to be the San Lao
of the county who should be a consultant of the prefect, assistant, and
commandant of the county. [The San Lao were exempted from forced

labor and garrison service and in the tenth oath [the beginning of the
official year] were granted wine and meat." (HFHD I.75; cf. also I.254; cf.
XIV Bb, xxv, par. 4.)
The title of San Lao dates from the Chou period. In 325 B. C., King
Wu-ling of Chao is said to have performed the ceremonies appropriate to
San Lao for his state.(Sc 43.19b [Skkcks 43:46] = Mh V.65, 66.
Chavannes does not seem to realize that this passage indicates that there
were San Lao for a kingdom). There were also in Former Han times San
Lao for a department (HHs M. 66.8b and San Lao for a kingdom [Hssc
1.16a]). "The Son of Heaven served the San Lao as if they were his
fathers and served the fivefold experienced (wu geng [similar but
lower ranking leaders of the people]) as if they were his elder brothers."
(Hcy, quoted in Ptsc 67.1b [Hcy, Bu-yi, B.7a]).

The officials with rank were "those appointed to an office by the

department. They ranked at 100 piculs [the lowest numerical rank] and
each had charge of one district. In small districts, [less than 5000
households, according to Ch'ien Ta-chao] the county established [instead
one bailiff." (XIV Bb,xxv, par. 4; HHs T. 28. 5a).

The bailiff ruled the people of a small. district; cf. n. 10. He evidently
ranked less than 100 piculs.
According to ba Osamu () (vide . ,
14.1-2:61-80.) there were at least thirteen different kinds of se-fu( )
beside hsiang se-fu (). They are:

All of them, though {they?} belonged to different levels of the Han
government set-up, had their proper places in the official hierarchy. Their
place in the line-up of the official command generally was in order of, ,
, (), . They also were divided into two different categories,
yu-chih and tou-shi (), as in the case of the hsiang se-fu .

The patrol leader acted as policeman. Cf. n. 7.


"A hundred li square" was only an average and approximate figure. The
Han li was 411 meters or 0.2555 miles long (cf. HFHD, III, chap. 99A,
note 9.7), so that 100 li was about 25 miles.

Wang Nien-sun points out that the words for "empresses dowager" are
an interpolation in order to make more explicit the meaning of the text,
being omitted in quotations of this passage in the Hc 5.12b (THHJ[?]: 12a)
{unknown reference} and T'ung tien 1.90b, ch 33 (both of which passages
the word has also been interpolated), in a note by Ju Shun to Sc 9.3b
(Hs:7) and by Chang Yen to Hs 1B.7a.

Chien Ta-chao remarks that Hs 28B.16b (quoted in I A, viii [The

Territory and the Population of the Former Han Empire in A.D. 2]) gives
figures for the number of counties, etc, which total up to the same number
as here. But the total number of such divisions listed in Hs ch. 28 is only
1578, so that there is a discrepancy of 9.
This footnote refers to a passage crossed out in the original MS. (E.B.),

Government (XIV) Ba 34
The Insignia and Number of the Regular Officials
Among all [ranks of] officials, those whose rank was equivalent to
2000 piculs and higher, all had silver seals with cerulean seal-cords.1
Imperial household grandees had none. Those ranking at equivalent to
600 piculs and above all had bronze seals with black seal-cords. Grandees,
erudits, [grandee] secretaries internuncios, and gentlemen had none.
Their supervisors, the [grandee] secretaries who prepared writings or had
charge of tallies or the imperial seals [however] had seals and seal-cords.
[Officials ranking] at equivalent to 200 piculs and over all had bronze seals
with yellow seal cords.2
In the second year of [the period] Yang-shou (23 B.C.), Emperor
Ch'eng did away with the ranks of 800 piculs and 500 piculs. In the first
year of [the period] Sui-ho (8 B.C.}, the chiefs [of counties] and
chancellors [of kingdoms] were all [given] black seal-cords. In the second
year of [the period] Chien-p'ing (5 B.C.), Emperor Ai restored their yellow
The fixed number of the [regularly appointed] officials, from the
accessory officials to the imperial chancellor, was 130,285 persons.
Hs 19A.16b
End of Hs 19A.

The Hcy (quoted by Yen Shih-ku) said, "On the back of the silver seals
was a tortoise-shaped knob. The legend [ on the seal] is, 'An official seal
(chang ).'" Yen explains, "It means that there was engraved 'The official
seal, chang) of such-and-such an office.'"
Ch'ien Ta-chao adds, "According to the Han institutions, the Son of
Heaven and the vassal kings all had imperial or royal seals (hsi ), while
the three highest ministers, the full marquises and those of lower [rank] all
had ordinary seals (yin ). The Son of Heaven had jade imperial seals

and the vassal kings had golden royal seals. Only the grand master, the
grand tutor, the grand protector, the imperial chancellor, the grand
commandant, the various generals, and the full marquises all used golden
ordinary seals. The grandee secretary was not given [such a golden seal].
When Emperor Ch'eng changed the title [of this official to] grand minister
of works, he first [was allowed] to use a golden seal. The other [officials]
used silver or bronze ones." Wang Ming-sheng adds; "The legend on [the
seals of officials ranking at 2000 piculs was 'An official seal (chang)'. . .
Those [of officials ranking at] equivalent to 600 piculs and over, were all
bronze ordinary seals (yin)."

The Hcy (quoted by Yen) said, "[Officials ranking at] 600 piculs and 400
piculs down to 200 piculs and more all had bronze ordinary seals with a
nose-shaped knob. The legend is 'An ordinary seal (yin).' " Yen explains,
"It means that the knob was made like a nose (or projection) and not in the
shape of an insect or animal, and that the legend engraved was, 'The
ordinary seal of such-and-such an office.'" Shen Ch'in Han (Hssc 3.97a, b)
adds, "Hcy l3.3a (tj:2b) [ says], 'The imperial heir-apparent has a gold seal
with the tortoise knob. The legend on the seal says, 'An official seal
(chang). ' [From this rank] down to [that of officials ranking at] 200 piculs,
they all have the seals of extended authority (t'ung.kuan yin ).'
"In my opinion, from this rank upwards, seals were all square and
were called 'seals of extended authority.' Those of [officials ranked at] 100
piculs and less were 'half seals [i. e. oblong, half of square] and were
called '[seals of] half extended authority (pan-t'ung ).' In HHs M.
39.[25b] Li Hsien, in a note, quotes [K'an Yin's (fl. dur. 386-532)] Treatise
on the Thirteen Thirteen Provinces (Shih-san chou chih), as saying, 'The
[official] possessing rank and the bailiff were permitted to employ a
half-[square] official seal.' . . . In the time of Emperor Kuang-wu [25-57
A.D.], Pao Yi [quoted in HHS, M. 19.12b], said in reply,"Ancient practise is
that a document from an official with extended authority [t'ung-kuan] does
not state his surname, but only says, 'Your servant, whose given name is
so-and-so, or, such-and-such an office with such-and-such a given name.'
Then the seals used by officials with extended authority only stated their
given names."
The rank of officials is often stated in terms of the color of their
seal-ribbon, since this is a wider term than the number of piculs in their
nominal salaries.

Cf. HFHD II, 389 and n. 7. 2 for more information.

This number is only that of the regularly appointed officials for whom
there was a definite number (yan ). In addition there were very large
numbers of bureaucrats, such as the grandees, gentlemen and the
gentlemen as rapid as tigers, (XIV B, vii and n. 2, 3, 5) who numbered more
than a thousand. In the office of the assistant grand minister of ceremonies
(XIV B. vii and n. 1) the number of departmental head clerks was not fixed,
but depended upon the circumstances. In this respect, the other ministries
were similar (HHs T. 25.1b). In the office of the grand butcher (XIV B, vi
and n.4) there were 42 regularly appointed officials, but there were also
242 butchers, 73 slaughterers, and 15 guards (A work on the Han
bureaucracy, quoted by Li Hsien in a note to HHs T. 5.2b). Thus this
figure of 130,285 is far from representing the total number in the
bureaucracy. It merely counts the regular and more important positions.
The Ching-yu ed., which is probably the best existing one
(reproduced as the Po-na ed.) and the Official ed. read "130,785" officials,
while Wang Hsien-ch'ien's ed., which represents the traditional text of Ming
times, before the Ching-yu ed. became available, reads "120,285." We
follow the former.