Showing Off One's Proficiency with the Axe Before Lu Ban the Master Carpenter
in ancient times, Lu Ban was supposed to be a consummate master in construction and sculpture. Carpenters respect him as ancestor master. It is said that he once carved a colorful wooden phoenix that was so lifelike that it actually flew in the sky for three days. Thus it was considered the height of folly to show off one's skill with an axe in front of Lu Ban.
This idiom excoriates those who show off their slight accomplishments in front of experts.
Like Fire and Flowering Rush
In the years around 480 B.C.,China was in the last phase of the Spring and Autumn Period.Fu Chai,King of the State of Wu,conquered the states of Yue,Lu and Chi one after another.Then Fu Chai,overweeningly ambitious,led his army marching into the Northwest in an attempt to conquer the State of Jin in one vigorous effort.
But just at that time,Gou Jian,king of the State of Yue,outflanked Fu Chai and attacked him in the rear.Gou Jian's army fought one battle after another and arrived in Gu Su,capital of the State of Wu,at last,and took away the big boats of the State of Wu.Gou Jin also sent his troops to occupy the Huai River immediately,thus cutting off Fu Chai's retreat
The shocking news reached Fu Chai,king of the State of Wu,like a head-on blow to him.So he called his civilian officials and military generals at once to find a way to deal with this serious situation.His civilian officials and military their troops now would mean defeat,and that they would be attacked by both the troops of the Jin army and the troops of the Yue army.But ,if they could defeat the State of Jin,Fu Chai would become a powerful chief of t治疗癲痫大概多少钱he princes at that time,and it would not be too late for Fu Chai to settle with Gou Jian after that.
Having made this decision,they knew that a pressing matter of the moment was to conquer th State of Jin as quickly as possible.After considering over and over again,they decided to try to defeat the Jin army by a surprise move.
One day towards evening,the king of the State of Wu gave his orders.The officers and men of the whole army ate their fill,and the steeds were well fed with fodder.30,000 officers and men were chosen from the whole army to from three phalanxes,with 10,000officers and men each.The solders in the middle phalanx wore white suits of armour,and carried white flags and white bows and arrows,and they were led by king of the State of Wu Fu Chai himself.The other two phalanxes were led by senior generals.The soldiers in the left phalanx wore red suits of armour,and carried red flags and red bows and arrows.The in dealing with the case,because the empress would certainly blame him and punish him.How could he solve the problem then? He turned the problem over and over in his mind, and finally thought out a "brilliant scheme".
Lai Junchen had a sumptuous feast prepared,and invited Zhou Xing to his home. The two of them urged each other to drink,and they talked while drinking.After the wine had gone round three times,I often come across prisoners who stubbournly refuse to admit they are guilty.I wonder if you have any effective measures." Hearing this,Zhou Xing said,"Get a big vat,scorch it hot with charcoal fire all around,and then let the prisoner come into the vat.Will the prisoner fail to make a comfession of his crime?"Hearing this,LaiJunchen nodded his head in approval repeatedly.He then ordered his subordinates to bring a big vat ,and had a charcoal fire lit all around it as Zhou Xing had said.He then turned to Zhou Xing and said,"Someone in the rebellion.The empress has ordered me to deal with the case severely.So I beg your pardon癫痫好治疗吗,but would you kindly step into the soldiers in the right phalanx wore black suits of armour,and carried black flags and black bows and arrows.The whole army set out at midnight,and arrived at dawn at a place within a LI's distance of the Jin army.When the day was beginning to break,the soldiers of the Wu army began to berat the drums heavily and their shoutings resounded like rolls of thunder.
Awakening from their dreams,the solders of the Jin army were almost stupefied by the imposing manner of the three phalanxes of the Wu army.The white phalanx was like a field covered with flowering rush,the red phalanx was like a burning fire,and the black phalanx was simply like a sea too deep to fathom.
This story comes from Comversations from the States.Later generations often use the set phrase "like fire and flowering rush"to refer to tremendous momentum.
Retreating about Thirty Miles as Condition For Peace
During the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 B.C.), Duke Xian of the State of Jin Killed the crown prince Sheng because he had heard slanders about Sheng and believed them. He also sent his men to arrest Chong Er, Shen Sheng and believed them. He also sent his men to arrest Chonh Er, Shen Sheng's brother. Hearing the news, Chong Er esc佛山市癫痫病医院有哪些aped from the state of Jin, remaining a fugitive for more than ten years.
After innumerable hardships, Chong Er arrived at the State of Chu at last. King Cheng of the State of Chu treated him with high respect as he would have treated the ruler of a state, believing that he would have a vright fuure.
One day, King Cheng of the State of Chu gave a banquet in honoudr of Chong Er. Suddenly, amid the harmonious atmosphere of drinking and talking, King Cheng of the State of Chu asked Chong Er. "How will you repay me when you return to the State of Jin and become its ruler one day?" After thinking for a moment, Chong Er said, "You have plenty of beauties and attendants as well as jewelry and silk cloth, and the state of Chu abounds in rare brides and animals. What treasure can the State of Jin boast having to present to your majesty?" King Cheng of the State of Chu said, "You are too modest. Nevertheless, you still have to show your gratitude to me in one way or another, I presume?" Smiling, Chong Er answered, "If I should be fortunate enouge to return to the State of Jin and become its ruler, the State of Jin would be friendly to the State of Chu. If, one day, there should be a war between the two states, I would definitely order my troops to retreat three SHE (one SHE is equivalent to thirty LI. The LI is a Chinese unit of length equivalent to 1/2 kilometre. And, therefore, three SHE is about thirty miles.) as a condition for peace. If, under that condition, you were still not reconciled, I would have to fight with you."
Four years later, as might be expected, Chong Er returned to the State of Jin and became its ruler. He was none other than Duke Wen of the State of Jin famous in ancient Chinese history. Ruled by him, the State of Jin became increasingly powerful.
In the year 533 B.C., the Chu troops and the Jin troops confronted each other in a battle. Faithful to his promise, Duke Wen of the State of Jin ordered his troops to retreat abo检查治疗癫痫病哪好ut thirty miles. After retreating, the Jin troops were stationed at Chengpu. Seeing that the Jin troops were retreating, the Chu troops thought that the enemy troops were afraid, and began chasing them. Taking advantage of the Chu troops' arrogance and their talking the Jin troops lightly, the Jin troops concentrated their forces and inflicted a crushing defeat on the Chu troops, thus winning the victory of the battle of Chengpu.
This set phrase, "retreating about thirty miles as a condition for peace," is derived from the Chapter "The Twenty-second Year of Duke Xi" in ZuoZhuan, the famous commentary by Zuo Qiuming on The spring and Autumn Annals. The idea of this set phrase is to give way to somebody in order to avoid a conflict.