Da yuan shuai

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Da yuan shuai (ta yuan shuai; Chinese: 大元帥; pinyin: dà yuán shuài; Wade–Giles: ta4 yüan2 shuai4) was a Chinese military rank, usually translated as grand marshal or generalissimo.

Da yuan shuai
Generalissimo of the PRC rank insignia (vertical).svg
Shoulder boards for the proposed PLA rank da yuan shuai ("generalissimo")
Country People's Republic of China
Service branch People's Liberation Army
Next higher rankNone
Next lower rankYuan shuai

During the early Republic of China, the rank of "grand marshal of the army and navy" (陸海軍大元帥 lù hǎijūn dàyuánshuài) was assumed by Yuan Shikai in 1913, Sun Yat-sen in 1917 and Zhang Zuolin in 1927.[1]

The rank was replaced by the Nationalist Government with the "general special class" or "generalissimo" (特級上將 Tèjí shàng jiàng) and awarded to Chiang Kai-shek in 1935.

The rank of "grand marshal of the People's Republic of China" (中華人民共和國大元帥 Zhōnghuá rénmín gònghéguó dàyuánshuài) was proposed after the establishment of the People's Republic (perhaps for Mao Zedong), but was never conferred.


Grand Marshals in the history of the world and ChinaEdit

The rank of Generalissimo is the highest in the world military rank system, and is generally awarded to the supreme commander of a country's armed forces. Only a few countries have this rank. For example, Stalin, who was the top leader of the Soviet Union and led the Soviet Union to the final victory in the Patriotic War, was awarded the rank of "Soviet Generalissimo". In addition, the National Government of the Republic of China awarded Chiang Kai-shek the "Super Admiral", Nazi Germany awarded Hermann Goering the "Marshal of the Empire" and the United States posthumously awarded the founding President George Washington the "Six-Star General of the United States" in 1976. And so on, can be regarded as equivalent to the generals.[2]

In the Chinese context, "Grand Marshal" and "Marshal" have appeared in ancient China. For example, "Grand Marshal of the World Soldiers and Horses" in the Liao Dynasty was an important title for the crown prince or the requester of the throne,[3] but they were only Official position rather than military rank. [3] After modern China, the "General Marshal" became the honorary or post title of the head of state or the supreme commander of the national armed forces, but they were not official military ranks, for example: Emperor Guangxu of the Qing Dynasty Zaiyun and Emperor Xuantong's father Jianguo regent The prince Zaifeng was appointed as the "Marshal of the Navy and the Army". The Northern Government of the Republic of China, such as Yuan Shikai, Li Yuanhong, Duan Qirui, and Zhang Zuolin, all served as the "Marshals of the Navy and Army." "General Marshal of the Army", Pu Yi once served as "Marshal of the Land and Navy of Manchuria" and so on. After the outbreak of the Anti-Japanese War in 1937, Chiang Kai-shek was appointed as the "Grand Marshal of the Army, Navy and Air Force of the Republic of China" and became the last General Marshal of the Republic of China. This "Grand Marshal" was also the title of the highest military commander during the war. It was a symbolic and informal title. Military rank, its official military rank is still "Super Admiral." After the founding of the People's Republic of China, the military rank system was implemented for the first time in 1955, and the "General Marshal" became China's official military rank.[4][5]

The People's Liberation Army plans to implement the military rank systemEdit

The military rank system is a military management system that indicates the military rank, social status, and honor of soldiers. The implementation of the military rank system is an important measure and symbol of the normalization and modernization of the military.[6][7] The predecessor of the Chinese People's Liberation Army led by the Communist Party of China, the Chinese Workers and Peasants Red Army, the Eighth Route Army, and the New Fourth Army did not implement the military rank system. The People's Liberation Army did not implement the military rank system at first.[8] However, before the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1939, 1946, and 1948, the Chinese Communist Party and the People’s Liberation Army had deliberated on implementing the military rank system three times, but it was not implemented due to various reasons such as historical conditions during the war years.[9][10]

The outbreak of the Korean War and the completion of the military rating workEdit

At the same time that the PLA began preparations for military ranks, the Korean War broke out and China intervened in the war, resulting in the suspension of preparations. It was also during the Korean War that the importance of the military rank system was manifested. For example, on the battlefield, the Chinese and North Korean armies fought in concert, but the Korean People’s Army had military ranks, while the Chinese People’s Volunteers, adapted from the People’s Liberation Army, had no military ranks. The command relationship brought many inconveniences, and it also made Peng Dehuai, commander and political commissar of the Volunteer Army, feel the necessity of establishing a military rank system.[11] Later, someone cited the example of the Panmunjom negotiations, pointing out that during the Sino-US negotiations, the US military had military ranks but the volunteers did not. For the sake of "equal equality", China could only temporarily assign "military ranks" to negotiators. The emergence of such an embarrassing situation also shows the urgency of China to establish a military rank system to facilitate international exchanges.[12] In August 1951, Peng Dehuai sent a telegram to Mao Zedong, stating: “The requirement for job identification is necessary in the current battle.” The prerequisite for establishing military ranks is to rank officers. In October of the same year, the Central Committee The Military Commission instructed the entire army to carry out cadre rating work. In April 1952, when Peng Dehuai returned to China for treatment, the central government decided to let him stay in Beijing to preside over the daily work of the Military Commission, focusing on military reform work including the assessment of officer ranks and the establishment of a military rank system. The rating work was basically completed that year.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Linda Pomerantz-Zhang (1992). Wu Tingfang (1842-1922): reform and modernization in modern Chinese history. Hong Kong University Press. p. 255. ISBN 962-209-287-X. Retrieved 2010-10-31.
  2. ^ 张应族, “元帅”与“大元帅”, 咬文嚼字, 2011年, (06期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  3. ^ 郭德慧, 辽代储君考, 河北北方学院学报(社会科学版), 2012年, (01期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  4. ^ 苏志荣, 元帅——军中至尊, 领导文萃, 2002年, (02期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  5. ^ 徐平, 蒋介石的“大元帅”不是军衔, 文史精华, 2001年, (05期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  6. ^ 徐平, 新中国军衔制发展历程, 百年潮, 2009年, (10期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  7. ^ 吴兆章, 毛泽东为何不当大元帅——开国授衔大揭秘, 文史博览, 2010年, (09期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  8. ^ 李光斗, 中国人民解放军实行军衔制的前后过程, 文史天地, 2002年, (03期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  9. ^ 龙丽伟、白羽车, 解放军首次实行军衔制内幕珍闻, 文史精华, 2006年, (03期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  10. ^ 欧阳青, 解放军首次实行军衔制全景式扫描, 领导科学, 2006年, (04期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  11. ^ 宗和, 揭秘十大元帅授衔幕后, 人民文摘, 2012年, (07期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)
  12. ^ 杨贵华, 人民解放军首次实行军衔制的台前幕后, 协商论坛, 2000年, (01期) (中文(中国大陆)‎)