Meng Da


Meng Da
Meng Da
General of Cao Wei
Born (Unknown)
Fufeng, Liang Province
Died 228
Luoyang
Names
Simplified Chinese 孟达
Traditional Chinese 孟達
Wade-Giles Mêng Ta
Style name Zijing (子敬)
Ziqing (子慶)
Zidu (子度)[1]

Meng Da (died 228) was a military general who served under Liu Zhang, Liu Bei, Cao Pi, and Cao Rui during the late Han Dynasty and Three Kingdoms period of Chinese history.

Contents

Biography

Service under Liu Bei

Takeover of Yi Province

Like fellow conspirators Zhang Song and Fa Zheng, who also sought to hand Yi Province to a more capable ruler, Meng Da pledged his allegiance to Liu Bei when the latter invaded the province.

When Liu was invited to Shu by Liu Zhang, who was the Governor of Yi Province at the time, Meng Da and Fa Zheng were dispatched with 2,000 soldiers each to act as an escort. Liu Bei ordered Meng Da to lead these troops back to Jiangling. Upon the pacification of Shu, he was given a post as Governor of a capital city.

Takeover of Hanzhong

In 219, Meng was sent north to capture the city of Fangling. Kuai Qi, Governor of Fangling, was defeated and killed. He then advanced to take the city of Shangyong, with Liu Feng leading reinforcements from Mianshui to join him. Shen Dan, governor of Shangyong, surrendered.

Later in the same year, Guan Yu besieged the cities of Fan and Xiangyang of Cao Wei. A request for additional military aid was sent to Liu Feng and Meng Da in Yishan county for the aggression. They refused the request on the basis their jurisdiction was newly acquired and unstable, hence they lacked the troops to be sent.

Service under Cao Pi

When Guan Yu was ultimately defeated and Liu Bei heard of his death, he began to hate Liu Feng and Meng. At this point in time, the two men had also had a dispute. Meng, fearing punishment and bearing hatred against Liu Feng, defected to the Kingdom of Wei along with his subordinates (amongst them the former Wei officer, Shen Dan). Afterwards, he wrote a letter to Liu Feng, informing the latter that he was in grave danger, because someone close to Liu Bei had spoken evil of him,[2] and urged Liu Feng to surrender to Wei. However, his advise was not heeded, and Liu returned to Chengdu, where Liu Bei's trusted aide, Zhuge Liang, suggested his master to get rid of Liu Feng. Hence, Liu Feng was executed on charges of failing to assist Guan Yu and stop Meng from defecting.

When a southerner from Shu Han traveled north and met Meng, the later asked the former what happened to his family back in Shu, and the former told Meng that Zhuge Liang persuaded Liu Bei to execute them, but Liu refused and Meng's family was safe.[3] Meng replied that Zhuge had priority on what came first and later, so he should not hurry on getting rid of his clan. When Zhuge knew about Meng's saying, he started to contact the latter, despite objection from Fei Shi.

Death

In 228, Zhuge Liang launched a campaign against Cao Wei. Meng Da, who had been treated kindly by the late emperor Cao Pi but was less favorably received by Cao Rui, was persuaded to return to the service of Shu Han, and moreover assist in the campaign by striking at Luoyang. However, Meng's failure to take necessary precautions and the betrayal of Shen Dan, Shen Yi and Zhuge Liang led to his eventual defeat and death at the hands of Sima Yi.[4]

Appointments and titles held

  • Administrator of Yidu (宜都太守)
Appointments and titles held by Meng Da after he defected to Wei
  • Attendant of Scattered Cavalry (散騎常侍)
  • General Who Builds Martial Might (建武將軍)
  • Marquis of Pingyang (平陽亭侯)
  • Administrator of Xincheng (新城太守)

See also

  • List of people of the Three Kingdoms

Notes

  1. ^ Some historical books refer his stylename as Zidu instead of Ziqing. This could be caused by the similarity of two Hanzi 慶 and 度.
  2. ^ (私怨人情,不能不见,恐左右必有以间于汉中王矣。) Chen Shou. Records of Three Kingdoms, Biography of Liu Feng.
  3. ^ (閒過孟達許,適見王沖從南來,言往者達之去就,明公(諸葛亮)切齒,欲誅達妻子,賴先主不聽耳。達曰: 『諸葛亮見顧有本末,終不爾也。』 盡不信沖言) Chen Shou. Records of Three Kingdoms.
  4. ^ (亮亦以達無款誠之心,故不救助也。) Chen Shou. Records of Three Kingdoms, Biography of Fei Shi.

References


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