King You of Zhou

King You of Zhou

King You of Zhou (reigned 781 BC - 771 BC) (ch. 周幽王 zhōu yōu wáng) was the twelfth sovereign of the Chinese Zhou Dynasty and the last of Western Zhou Dynasty.

In 780 BC, an earthquake hit Guanzhong. A person named Bo Yangfu (伯陽甫) considered that the Zhou Dynasty would be doomed. In 779 BC, Baosi () entered the palace, became loved by King You, and had a son Bofu (伯服) born. King You deposed Queen Shen (申后) and Prince Yijiu. He made Baosi the new queen and Bofu the new prince.

Baosi did not like to laugh. After failing many methods, King You tried to impress his favorite queen Baosi by fooling the nobles with the beacon into thinking that there was danger of enemies attacking. They came to the castle only to find themselves being laughed at by Baosi while there were no enemies. Once King You impressed Baosi, he kept abusing the beacon, but he would then lose the trust from the nobles so they would disregard his lightened beacon.

Deposing Queen Shen and Prince Yijiu upset Queen Shen's father who would get outside force to attack King You. Eventually, when danger did come, King You called for the nobles with the already abused beacon but none came, thinking that the king was fooling them again. In the end, King You and Bofu were killed and Baosi was captured. King You's death marks the end of the Western Zhou Dynasty.

After King You died, the nobles supported deposed Prince Yijiu as King Ping to continue the Zhou Dynasty. As the national capital was severely damaged, King Ping of Zhou moved the capital eastward and began the Eastern Zhou Dynasty.

King You's folly predates Aesop's classical tale of the The Boy Who Cried Wolf by more than a hundred years.

The rhyming nature of the King's name is also the inspiration of a Dr. Seuss children's book.

Personal information

Family name Ji (姬 jī) in Chinese
Given name Gongsheng (宮湦 gōng shēng) or Gongnie (宮涅 gōng niè) in Chinese
Era name none
Father King Xuan of Zhou
Mother unknown
Wives 1) Queen Shen, daughter of Marquess of Shen
2) Concubine Baosi
Children King Ping of Zhou from Queen Shen and prince Bofu from Baosi
duration of reign 781 BC-771 BC
Tomb unknown
Temple name unknown
Courtesy name unknown
Posthumous name You 幽 (pinyin yōu), literary meaning: "serene"


Sima Qian, "Records of the Grand Historian", Volume 4

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • King Ping of Zhou — (before 771 BC 720 BC) (ch. 周平王 zhōu píng wáng) or King P ing of Chou was the thirteenth sovereign of the Chinese Zhou Dynasty and the first of Eastern Zhou Dynasty. He fled when his father died.Personal information Family name Ji (姬 jī) in… …   Wikipedia

  • King Xuan of Zhou — (before 841 BC 781 BC) (ch. 周宣王 zhōu xūan wáng) was the eleventh sovereign of the Chinese Zhou Dynasty. Personal information Family name Ji (姬 jī) in Chinese Given name Jing (靜 jìng) in Chinese Era name none Father King Li of Zhou Mother unknown… …   Wikipedia

  • Zhou Dynasty — For other uses, see Zhou Dynasty (disambiguation). Zhou Dynasty 周朝 Kingdom ← …   Wikipedia

  • Zhou Tong (archer) — This is a Chinese name; the family name is Zhou (周). Zhou Tong Zhou Tong stroking his beard Teacher of General Yue Fei Chinese 周同 (historical) 周侗 (fictional) …   Wikipedia

  • Zhou Enlai — This is a Chinese name; the family name is Zhou. Zhou Enlai 周恩来 1st Premier of the People s Republic of China In offic …   Wikipedia

  • King Wen sequence — The King Wen sequence (Chinese: 文王卦序) is an arrangement of the sixty four divination figures in 易經 Yì Jīng, the I Ching or Book of Changes. They are called hexagrams in English because each figure is composed of six 爻 yáo broken or unbroken lines …   Wikipedia

  • Family tree of the Zhou Dynasty — This is a family tree from which King Nan of Zhou, the last king of the Zhou Dynasty was a descendant of the first founder Duke Wu of Zhou who overthrew the last Shang ruler Di Xin. Ruling from 1046 BC to 256 BC of Zhou rule, it is remarked as… …   Wikipedia

  • Nangong Kuo (Western Zhou) — Nangong Kuo (Chinese: 南宫括 or 南宫适; Pinyin: Nángōng Kuò) was an official of Zhou. According to Classic of History, he was one of the key ministers of King Wen of Zhou.[1] Plot in Fengshen Yanyi Nangong Kuo was also a character featured within the… …   Wikipedia

  • Emperor Wu of Northern Zhou — ((北)周武帝) (543 578), personal name Yuwen Yong (宇文邕), nickname Miluotu (禰羅突), was an emperor of the Chinese/Xianbei dynasty Northern Zhou. As was the case of the reigns of his brothers Emperor Xiaomin and Emperor Ming, the early part of his reign… …   Wikipedia

  • Martial arts of Zhou Tong — This is an article about martial arts styles attributed to Zhou Tong. To read his main article, go to Zhou Tong (archer). Various martial arts have been attributed to or associated with Zhou Tong, the archery teacher of Song Dynasty general, Yue… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.