Chen Yi (marshal)

  (Redirected from Chen Yi (general))

Chen Yi (Chinese: 陈毅; pinyin: Chén Yì; Wade–Giles: Chen I; August 26, 1901 – January 6, 1972) was a Chinese communist military commander and politician. He served as Mayor of Shanghai from 1949 to 1958 and as Foreign Minister of China from 1958 to 1972.

Chen Yi
Chen Yi(communist).jpg
8th Mayor of Shanghai
In office
Preceded byZhao Zukang
Succeeded byKe Qingshi
2nd Foreign Minister of the People's Republic of China
In office
PremierZhou Enlai
DeputyLuo Guibo
Preceded byZhou Enlai
Succeeded byJi Pengfei
2nd Secretary of the CPC Shanghai Committee
In office
Preceded byRao Shushi
Succeeded byKe Qingshi
1st President of the China Foreign Affairs University
In office
Preceded bynone
Succeeded byLiu Chun
Closed until 1980
Personal details
Born(1901-08-26)26 August 1901
Lezhi County, Sichuan, Qing dynasty China
Died6 January 1972(1972-01-06) (aged 70)
Beijing, People's Republic of China
Xiao Juying (萧菊英)
(m. 1930; death 1932)

Lai Yueming (赖月明)
(m. 1932)

Zhang Qian (张茜)
(m. 1940)
ChildrenChen Haosu, Chen Xiaolu
Military service
Nickname(s)Poet Marshal
Allegiance People's Republic of China
Branch/servicePeople's Liberation Army
Years of service1927–1972
RankMarshal of People's Republic of China
CommandsCommander-in-Chief, Eastern China Field Army, Deputy Commander-in-Chief, Central China Field Army
Battles/warsNorthern Expedition, Long March, Hundred Regiments Offensive, Chinese Civil War


Chen was born in Lezhi County near Chengdu, Sichuan, into a moderately wealthy magistrate's family.

Jakob Rosenfeld (center), Liu Shaoqi (left), and Chen Yi (right)
Bust of Chen Yi in China Foreign Affairs University campus.

A comrade of Lin Biao from their guerrilla days, Chen was a commander of the New Fourth Army during the Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), spearheaded the Shandong counter-offensive during the Chinese Civil War, and later commanded the Communist armies that defeated the KMT forces during the Huaihai Campaign and conquered the lower Yangtze region in 1948–49. He was made a Marshal of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) in 1955.

After the founding of the People's Republic of China, Chen became mayor of Shanghai. He also served as vice premier from 1954 to 1972 and foreign minister from 1958 to 1972 and president of the China Foreign Affairs University from 1961 to 1969. As vice premier, he was present during the breakup of Sino-Soviet relations. In August 1960, Chen Yi attempted to ease tensions with the Soviets, declaring on one instance to the Soviet Ambassador to Beijing that Moscow should stop "severing the friendship between the two nations," and two weeks later to the Soviet deputy foreign minister that Moscow and Beijing should both try to save the alliance.[2] During the Cultural Revolution, he was criticized in 1967, but never dismissed, so Zhou Enlai performed the duties of foreign minister in his place. He was a member of the 8th CPC Politburo from 1956 to 1967 but was not admitted to the 9th Politburo (1969), though he was a member of the 9th CPC Central Committee.

After Marshal Lin Biao's death in 1971, he was restored to favour, although not to his former power. Mao Zedong attended Chen's funeral in 1972.[3] This was Mao's last public appearance and his first appearance at anyone's funeral during the Cultural Revolution.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ maokaikai, ed. (7 January 2016). "陈毅的子女后代 陈毅有几位妻子" [The descendants of Chen Yi. How many wives did Chen Yi have?]. Archived from the original on 11 February 2017. Retrieved 9 February 2017.
  2. ^ Shu Guang Zhang, 2010, The Sino-Soviet alliance and the Cold War in Asia, 1954-1962. The Cambridge History of the Cold War, Vol 1, p.371.
  3. ^ Perlez, Jane (6 December 2013). "A Leader in Mao's Cultural Revolution Faces His Past". New York Times. Retrieved 26 December 2013.

External linksEdit

Government offices
Preceded by
Zhao Zukang
Mayor of Shanghai
Succeeded by
Ke Qingshi
Preceded by
Zhou Enlai
Foreign Minister of the People's Republic of China
Succeeded by
Ji Pengfei
Party political offices
Preceded by
Rao Shushi
Secretary of the CPC Shanghai Committee
Succeeded by
Ke Qingshi
Academic offices
New title President of the China Foreign Affairs University
Succeeded by
Liu Chun
Closed until 1980