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Zhonghang Wenzi 中行文子 Xun Yin 荀寅

Nov 1, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald

Xun Yin 荀寅, also called Zhonghang Yin 中行寅, posthumous title Zhonghang Wenzi 中行文子 or Xun Wenzi 荀文子, was a nobleman in the state of Jin 晉 during the Spring and Autumn period 春秋 (770-5th cent. BCE). He was a son of Xun Wu 荀吳 and a member of the house of Zhonghang 中行.

During the reign of Duke Qing 晉頃公 (r. 526-512), he was appointed junior minister (xiaqing 下卿) and then rose to the post of general of the Central Army (zhongjun 中軍). Together with Zhao Yang 趙鞅 (Zhao Jianzi 趙簡子), he organized the fortification of the city of Ruban 汝濱 in 513 and ordered casting a bronze tripod inscribed with the newly issued penal code.

In 479, Zhao Yang killed the grand master (dafu 大夫) of Handan 邯鄲, Zhao Wu 趙午, and therefore initiated a private feud with Xun Yin and Fan Jiyi 范吉射 who were both relatives to Zhao Wu. They attacked Zhao Yang in the former capital city Jinyang 晉陽. Xun Li 荀躒 and other noblemen thereupon suggested to the Duke of Jin punishing the two troublemakers. They were forced to flee to Chaoge 朝歌.

Zhao Yang in turn besieged the town of Chaoge and forced Xun Yin and Fan Jiyi to flee to Handan, and then on to Xianyu 鮮虞 and Bairen 柏人. The army of Jin even persecuted them to this remote town, so that in the end Xun Yin escaped to the state of Qi 齊. His flight put an end to the family Zhonghang.

The fiefs of the familes Zhonghang and Fan were confiscated and divided among the victors, the noblemen of Zhao 趙, Han 韓, Wei 魏 and Zhi 知.

Sources:
Huang Huixian 黄惠賢, ed. (1997). Ershiwu shi renming da cidian 二十五史人名大辭典 (Zhengzhou: Zhongzhou renmin chubanshe), Vol. 1, 19.
Zhang Weizhi 張撝之, Shen Qiwei 沈起煒, Liu Dezhong 劉德重, ed. (1999). Zhongguo lidai renming da cidian 中國歷代人名大辭典 (Shanghai: Shanghai guji chubanshe), Vol. 2, 1680.