The Warring States Period ( 475 to 220 BC ) was an era when regional warlords annexed smaller states around them and consolidated their power . The process began in the Spring and Autumn Period and by the 3rd century BC, seven major states had emerged as the dominant powers in China . The states were : Qi, Chu, Yan, Han, Zhao, Wei and Qin. Qi Yan Chu Qin Zhao Wei Han
The Eastern Zhou period is also designated as the period of the Hundred Schools of Thought. The Greatest Military Strategists were Sima Rangju, Sun Tzu, Gui Gu Zi, Sun Bin, Wei Liao Zi, Wu Zi. Sima Rangju Sun Wu Sun Bin Wei Liao Zi Wu Qi Gui Gu Zi
Wu Qi ( 440-381 BC) was a Chinese military leader and politician in the Warring States period. Born in the State of Wei , he was skilled in leading armies and military strategy. He had served in the states of Lu and Wei. Wu Qi
On his dark side, Wu Qi was known for not returning to mourn when his mother died and for murdering his own wife ( who was the daughter of a noble from the rival state of Qi ) in order to gain trust from the ruler of the state of Lu .
When Wu Qi worked in the state of Wei, he commanded many great battles and was appointed Xihe Shou ( Mayor of Xihe county ).
A wise general will show concern to the soldiers, he will treat them as brothers . Wu Qi , a famous winning strategist, emphasized on the unity of the army .
When Wu Qi discovered that one of his soldiers is suffering from a painful boil, he went to the soldier and use his mouth to suck out the boil . The soldiers was shocked and touched by Wu Qi's actions and swear loyalty to him, when the whole army know about it, the morale of the army increased .
Later, after he was estranged from his lord and forced into exile, Wu Qi went to the State of Chu where he was appointed Prime Minister by King Dao of Chu . King Dao of Chu
Although Wu Qi’s reforms soon started to make Chu a powerful country, the nobles and Daoists of Chu hated him . Nobles accused him of trying to change the old ways , and even managed to find fault with the building codes . Daoists accused him of being a " warmonger " and an " admirer of force and weaponry " , even going as far as to say that he was " a threat to humanity ".
Chu's prowess was quickly seen during that period : in 381 BC, Chu annexed the Chen state, defeated the Yue state in the south and the two Weis in the north, dealing with each in quick succession . However, King Dao died that same year . Old nobles plotted to assassinate Wu Qi at King Dao's funeral, where he would be separated from the army . Wu Qi spotted the assassins armed with bows, and rushed to the side of King Dao's body . He was killed, but many arrows struck the dead King . The new King Su, furious at his father's body being mutilated, ordered all nobles involved to be executed, along with their families .
Wu Qi and Sun Tzu are often listed in the same sentence ( Sun - Wu) as great military strategists . His military work, Wuzi was included in the compilation Seven Military Classics.
The Statue of Wu Qi, the Prime Minister of Chu State in China.
Wu Zi, a well - known military book of ancient China, was one of the Seven Mitary Classics designated by the Emperor in the Song Dynasty . The author was Wu Qi ( 440 BC -381 BC ) , a famous military scientist, statesman and reformer in the early Warring States Period . It elaborates on the guidelines of ruling a state and controlling an army, examines the causes of war and its various types, stresses the flexible methods of combat, proposes the principles and means of training, dwells on the importance of generals and the means of giving rewards and punishments . Wu Zi The Art Of War
It is said there were other two books on the art of war by Wu Qi, but both were lost, hence leaving Wu Zi as the only existing book carrying Wu ’ s military thoughts. The earliest Wu Zi edition dates to the Song Dynasty (960-1279). Wu Zi The Art Of War
Wu Zi The Art Of War Wu Qi Art of War , also known as Wu Zi Art of War, altogether has 6 Chapters, you will notice much emphasis is placed on strengthening the nation and its people. Only one chapter, Chapter 5 is dedicated to handling changing war circumstances. So it is always recommended to read Sun Zi Art of War and Wu Qi Art of War together. The Chapters are as follow : 1st Part Chapter 1 : Strengthening the Nation Chapter 2: Knowing the Enemy Chapter 3: Managing Troops 2 nd Part Chapter 4: Selection of Generals Chapter 5: Responding to Changes in War Chapter 6: Motivating Talents
Need for Strengthening Domestic and External Issues Unity and People's Support Four Virtues of Ruler Running the State and Victory Reasons for War and its Counter Strategy Managing Troops, Selecting Talents, Strengthening Nation Strength in Offense and Defense Importance of Seeking Talents Chapter 1 : Strengthening the Nation
Chapter 2: Knowing the Enemy Nation Alertness Six States Characteristics & Counter Strategies Providing Opportunities for Talents Enemy You Can Attack Enemy You Cannot Attack Detecting Enemy's Situation Weaknesses You Can Attack
Chapter 3: Managing Troops Factors on Using Troops Gain Control of Army Things to Note on Marching Army Decisiveness Education & Training of Army Placing Individuals at Appropriate Positions Principles of Marching & Stationing Army Maintenance of Horses
Chapter 4: Selection of Generals Management of Troops Four Areas to Note & Characteristics of Good General Characteristics & Importance of Good Communication Knowing the Enemy General Testing Enemy General
Chapter 5: Responding to Changes in War Chaos and Communication When Outnumbered by Enemy How to Win a Strong Enemy When Surrounded by Enemy Caught in Unfavorable Terrain Caught in Valley Fighting Marine Battles Wet and Dry Weather Fighting Plunderers After Conquering Cities
Chapter 6: Motivating Talents When you issue orders and the people willingly follow them; when you raised the army and mobilize the masses, the people take pleasure in going to battle; when engaging the enemy, the people take pleasure in fighting till death, then these three are what a ruler of men can rely on. You should identify men of accomplishment and honor them with a grand feast. Also invite those that have not accomplish anything. This would stimulate them. The day before the battle Wu Qi spoke to the troops:"All aides and officers must confront and capture enemy's chariots, cavalry and infantry. If the chariots do not make prisoners of the enemy's chariots, the cavalry do not make prisoners of the enemy's cavalry, the infantry do not make prisoners of the enemy's infantry, then even if we forge an overwhelming victory, no one will be accredited with any achievements." On the day of the battle, although his orders were not onerous, but his awesomeness shook the world.
The book analyzes that there are five reasons for wars – desire for fame,want of profit, accumulated evils, civil strife, and famine and five kinds of troops -- righteous, strong, firm, violent, and rebellious; the book also pays much attention to war prepar edness . Wu Zi The Art Of War 1
In managing state affairs, the book holds the view that both civil and military aspects should be given enough attention to strengthen and solidify the governance of the feudal ruling class . Discipline and the impartial meting out of rewards and punishments are considered essential in winning a war . The book considers rigid military training critical for soldiers to master various fighting skills, so as to improve the battle effectiveness . The book also suggests soldiers should be arrayed to different teams to optimize the army according to their different strength and skills . Wu Zi The Art Of War 2 3 4
The book also states a good general should command both military and civilian forces, have both toughness and gentleness characteristics, and boast the five qualities of reason, preparedness, decisiveness, abstention, and restriction . Before attacking the enemy, the general should first ascertain the strength of the opponent, and then choose the best opportunity to launch the strike . With the changing situation of the war, the general should also change the ways of fighting accordingly, the book adds . Wu Zi The Art Of War 5
Despite having only about 5,000 words, the book still boasts very rich content . It is another military canon with a complete system, full of insights, penetrating thoughts, and significant theoretic values after Sun Zi Art of War , occupying a paramount position in ancient Chinese military history . Wu Zi The Art Of War 6