Encyclopedia: Gao Shun

Gao Shun; Kao Shun; 高順

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Gao Shun 高順

Lived: AD ?–198

Biographies:

Served: Lü Bu

Defeated Xiahou Dun. Caught and executed by Cao Cao at Xiapi.

Officer Details

Wade-Giles: Kao Shun
Simplified Chinese: 高顺
Pronunciation: Gao1 Shun4  Pronunciation
Cantonese (Yale): Gou Seun
Cantonese (Jyutpin): Gou Seon
Min-Nan: Kho Sun

Rank and Titles

Chief Controller; General of the Gentlemen of the Household

Literary Appearances

Romance of the Three Kingdoms: 11, 12, 1418, 19

Sanguozhi: Wei 1, Wei 7, Shu 2

Zizhi tongjian: 62

Biography

Source Undefined

Gao Shun was a general of Lü Bu’s and famous commander during the Late-Han period. At the Battle of Puyang, Gao Shun helped to defeat and drive back Cao Cao’s army. Later, Gao Shun distinguished himself in other battles. On one occasion, an officer of Lü Bu’s, He Meng, rebelled in Lü Bu’s city of Xiapi. Lü Bu fled in nightclothes to the camp of Gao Shun to get help. Though He Meng drove Lü Bu out of his city during the nighttime, Gao Shun was still able to rouse his sleepy troops and defeat He Meng. Later, Cao Xing, an officer under Lü Bu, beheaded the rebel.

After Lü Bu had turned back an invasion of Yuan Shu’s, Lü Bu decided to capture Xiaopei, a stronghold belonging to Liu Bei. Liu Bei was allies with Cao Cao, however, and sought help against his enemies. Gao Shun was in command of Lü Bu’s troops, and managed to defeat both Liu Bei and Xiahou Dun (a general of Cao Cao’s) in battle. Lü Bu thus took control of Xiaopei, but was soon after invaded and destroyed by armies commanded directly by Cao Cao.

During Cao Cao’s siege of Xia Pi (Lü Bu’s capital city), Gao Shun and Chen Gong, Lü Bu’s two best officers, were tied up and sent to Cao Cao by three rebellious generals under Lü Bu. Most of Lü Bu’s subordinates surrendered to Cao Cao thereafter, but Gao Shun and Chen Gong were so loyal to their former liege that Cao Cao was forced to behead them. Gao Shun had been a righteous man throughout his career, and a true exemplar of chivalry. Though he disagreed with Lü Bu’s erratic alliance-making frequently, Gao Shun never got angry or revolted against Lü Bu (like many of Lü Bu’s other commanders). Gao Shun’s troops were also often given to the command of some of Lü Bu’s other generals but, despite this, Gao Shun never complained. In battle, Gao Shun led a legendary contingent of ‘shock troops,’ a special unit that would break through an enemy formation and fight completely surrounded by enemy troops. For some reason, this strategy of Gao Shun’s was highly effective.

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May 13, 2014