Cen Hun (died 280) was an official of the state of Eastern Wu during the late Three Kingdoms period (220–280) of China.

Cen Hun
岑昏
among the Nine Ministers
In office
? (?)–280 (280)
MonarchSun Hao
Personal details
BornUnknown
Died280[a]
OccupationOfficial

LifeEdit

Cen Hun held positions among the Nine Ministers during the reign of Sun Hao, the fourth and last emperor of Wu. Historians described him as a corrupt official who oppressed the people. However, on one occasion, he led other officials to beg Sun Hao to spare the life of Zhang Shang (張尚), an official holding the position of Prefect of the Palace Writers (中書令), after Zhang Shang offended the emperor.

In 280, the Jin dynasty conquered Wu. After Sun Hao surrendered to the Jin dynasty, several former Wu officials blamed Cen Hun for causing the downfall of Wu and urged Sun Hao to execute him. Sun Hao reluctantly agreed, and even though he regretted his decision later and tried to rescind his order, it was too late as Cen Hun had already been executed.

In Romance of the Three KingdomsEdit

In the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, which romanticises the events before and during the Three Kingdoms period, Cen Hun is portrayed as a palace eunuch and close aide of Sun Hao. He instigates the emperor's tyranny and plays a significant role in bringing about the corruption and decadence that led to the downfall of Wu in 280. After Sun Hao surrenders to the Jin dynasty, many former Wu officials blame him for causing Wu's downfall and had him executed by slow slicing.

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Sun Hao's biography in the Sanguozhi recorded that Cen Hun died on the bingyin day of the 3rd month of the 4th year of the Tianji era of Sun Hao's reign.[1] This is probably an error because there was no bingyin day in that month. The closest bingyin days and their corresponding dates in the Gregorian calendar were 26 March 280 (bingyin day of the 2nd month) and 25 May 280 (bingyin day of the 4th month).

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ ([天紀四年]三月丙寅,殿中親近數百人叩頭請皓殺岑昏,皓惶憒從之。) Sanguozhi vol. 48.