First Emperor of Shu and sworn brother of Guan Yu and Zhang Fei.
Birthplace: Zhou County, Zhou district
(Presently Zhuo Zhou, He Bei Province)
Other Names: Imperial Uncle, Princely One, Xian Zhu
Name Notes: Liu Bei is commonly referenced by the name, Xian Zhu (先主), ‘First Ruler’ or ‘First Soverign’. Chen Shou, in the Sanguozhi, refers to Liu Bei by this title to indicate the illegitimacy of his dynasty in the eyes of Jin. Sun Quan and his clan are placed on an even lower pedestal. Sometimes referred to as the ‘Princely One’ in the Brewitt-Taylor novel translation.
Rank and Titles
Magistrate of Anxi; Governor of Xia Mi; Gao Tangwei; Magistrate; Bie Bu Sima; Magistrate of Pingyuan; Governor of Pingyuan; Inspector of Yuzhou; General Who Conquers the East; Marquis of Yicheng; Imperial Protector of Yuzhou; General of the Left; Imperial Protector of Jingzhou; Commander-in-Chief; Colonel Director of Retainers; Imperial Protector of Yizhou; Prince of Hanzhong; Emperor
Family and Relationships
Liu Sheng (Descended from); Liu Hong (Father); Lady Mi, Lady Sun [Sun Shangxiang], Empress Mu (Wives); Empress Gan (Concubine); Liu Shan, Liu Yong, Liu Li (Sons); Liu Feng (Adopted Son); Guan Yu ƒ, Zhang Fei ƒ (Sworn Brothers); Dilu Horse [Hex Mark] ƒ (Horse)
Fact vs. Fiction
Differences Between Fact and Common Fiction
- The Peach Tree Garden oath did not actually take place but Sanguozhi states that Liu, Guan and Zhang ‘slept in the same bed and were as close as brothers.’
- Played a minor role during the Yellow Scarves revolt. Did not fight the Scarves at Wan or save Dong Zhuo. Furthermore, he was 23 years old at this point, not 28.
- Zhang Fei did not whip the imperial inspector. Liu Bei did.
- Was not offered Xuzhou by Tao Qian directly, but was invited to govern by Chen Deng and Kong Rong. He also never offered Xuzhou to Lü Bu.
- Was not acknowledged by Emperor Xian as Imperial Uncle.
- Did not rely on Xu Shu to defend Xinye from Cao Ren and Li Dian. He arranged and carried out the defense himself.
- Defeated Xiahou Dun at Xin Ye, not Zhuge Liang.
- Though involved in Chibi, Wu’s role was greater in history.
- View ≈5 Additional Facts?
- Although Sun Quan was advised by Zhou Yu and Han Ze to keep Liu Bei hostage during his visit to Wu, no such attempt was made, and Liu Bei left without incident.
- Huang Zhong was not chief commander of Shu’s Hanzhong campaign. Liu Bei was.
- Commanded between 40–80,000 troops at Yiling; far fewer than the 700,000 or so mentioned in the novel.
- Had than three sons and some daughters (which were, unfortunately, captured by Cao Chun at Changban Slope).
- Historically Liu Bei was a much more talented commander than the novel makes him out to be.
Romance of the Three Kingdoms: 1, 2, 5–7, 11–28, 31–45, 47–49, 51–58, 60–74, 76–84, 85, 86–89, 91, 93, 97, 102–106, 117–120
Sanguozhi: Shu 1
Romance of the Three Kingdoms: Chapter 82
Liu Bei said, “However, you may return and tell Sun Quan to wash his neck: the executioner is coming!”
Romance of the Three Kingdoms: Chapter 85
In his testament to Liu Shan, Liu Bei said, “Be vigilant! Be vigilant! If an evil is minor, resist it nonetheless. If a good deed is trifling, perform it all the same. Only wisdom and virtue can truly win men’s devotion.”
- Liu Bei’s Top 5 Generals Poll
- SGYY—How Did Liu Bei Secure the Service of Zhuge Liang?
- Sun Quan, Cao Cao, or Liu Bei?
- Monster and His Heir: Liu Bang and Liu Bei
- Liu Bei Attacks Wu; Cao Pi Joins
- Who Should Liu Bei Have Placed in Charge of Jingzhou?
- List of Liu Bei’s "betrayals" and Discussion On.
- Did Liu Bei Put His Goals Above Family and Friends?
- Why Harbour Liu Bei?
- Guan Yu’s Death a Planned Excuse for Liu Bei to Attack Wu?
- Discussing Liu Bei’s Military Career
- Is Liu Bei Really a Man of Virtue?
- View ≈31 Additional Results?
- Do You Think Liu Bei Was Right in Taking Liu Zhang’s Land?
- If Liu Bei Was More Patient?
- Liu Bei’s Sons
- Liu Bei Vs. Lu Bu
- Historical Liu Bei?
- Liu Bei’s Skillz
- Liu Bei Really The Protagonist?
- Liu Bei’s Kingdom Was Han, Not Shu
- Liu Bei: a Fake?
- Sun Quan Surrenders, Liu Bei Done For?
- Cao Cao Vs. Liu Bei
- Cao Cao or Liu Bei: Who Was the Biggest Rebel?
- Liu Bei’s Satisfaction with Lady Sun
- Were Liu Bei, Guan Yu and Zhang Fei Suitable to Become Gods?
- Liu Bei’s Cannibalism?
- Liu Bei, Shu’s Downfall?
- Could Liu Bei Be Successful Without His Brothers?
- Lu Bu or Liu Bei: Who is the Bigger Traitor?
- If Guan Yu Didn’t Aid Liu Bei, Would He Have Succeeded?
- Did Liu Bei Truly Love the Common Folk? (Historically)
- Liu Bei’s Curse?
- Liu Bei Successor’s Conflict, What Do You Think?
- Liu Bei’s Desires in Regards to Liu Shan’s Future…
- Han Xin’s Great Summer Offensive Pt. 1: Liu Bei and XuZhou
- Did Liu Bei and His Generals Have Any Talent?
- Discussion of Heroes, Cao Cao’s Desire, Liu Bei’s Ambition.
- Would Liu Bei Turn to Cao Cao?
- Liu Bei—A Historically Better Ruler?
- Liu Bei Vs. Gongsun Zan
- Why Did Liu Bei’s Defeat at Yi Ling Happen?
- If Sun Quan and Liu Bei Were Friends…
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