Guo Huai (died 23 February 255),[a] courtesy name Boji, was a military general of the state of Cao Wei (or Wei) during the Three Kingdoms period of China. He started his career towards the end of the Eastern Han dynasty under the warlord Cao Cao as a subordinate of Cao Cao's generals Xiahou Yuan and Zhang He. During the Three Kingdoms period, he served in Wei, the state established by Cao Cao's son Cao Pi, and lived through the reigns of four Wei emperors (Cao Pi, Cao Rui, Cao Fang and Cao Mao). From the 220s until his death in 255, he governed and defended Wei's western borders in Yong and Liang provinces (covering parts of present-day Gansu, Shaanxi, Ningxia, Qinghai and Inner Mongolia). During this time, he resisted multiple invasions by Wei's rival state, Shu Han, and quelled some rebellions by local Qiang, Di and other non-Han Chinese tribes.
|General of Chariots and Cavalry (車騎將軍)|
June or July 250 – 23 February 255
|Monarch||Cao Fang / Cao Mao|
|Preceded by||Wang Ling|
|General Who Attacks the West (征西將軍)|
249 – June or July 250
|General of the Vanguard (前將軍)|
|General of the Left (左將軍)|
|Inspector of Yong Province (雍州刺史)|
|Monarch||Cao Pi / Cao Rui / Cao Fang / Cao Mao|
|Monarch||Emperor Xian of Han|
Yangqu County, Shanxi
|Died||[a]23 February 255|
|Spouse(s)||Wang Ling's sister|
|Courtesy name||Boji (伯濟)|
|Posthumous name||Marquis Zhen (貞侯)|
|Peerage||Marquis of Yangqu (陽曲侯)|
Guo Huai was from Yangqu County (陽曲縣), Taiyuan Commandery, which is located southwest of present-day Yangqu County, Shanxi. His grandfather Guo Quan (郭全) and father Guo Yun (郭縕) served as the Grand Minister of Agriculture (大司農) and Administrator (太守) of Yanmen Commandery (near present-day Xinzhou, Shanxi) respectively in the Eastern Han dynasty.
Guo Huai started his career in the middle of the Jian'an era (196–220) of Emperor Xian's reign in the late Eastern Han dynasty. He was nominated as a xiaolian (civil service candidate) and was subsequently appointed as an assistant official in Pingyuan Commandery.
Service under Cao CaoEdit
When Cao Pi held the position of General of the Household for All Purposes (五官中郎將) between 211 and 220, he recruited Guo Huai to serve as an officer in the law enforcement bureau under his charge. Guo Huai was later reassigned to be a clerk in the military affairs bureau of the office of the Imperial Chancellor, the position held by Cao Pi's father Cao Cao, the warlord who controlled the Han central government and the figurehead Emperor Xian since 196.
In 215, Guo Huai accompanied Cao Cao on a campaign against a rival warlord, Zhang Lu, in Hanzhong Commandery. After defeating Zhang Lu and capturing Hanzhong Commandery, Cao Cao left his general Xiahou Yuan behind to guard Hanzhong against possible attacks by another rival warlord, Liu Bei, who was in the nearby Yi Province (covering present-day Sichuan and Chongqing). Guo Huai also remained in Hanzhong and served as a Major (司馬) under Xiahou Yuan's command.
In 217, Liu Bei launched a campaign to seize control of Hanzhong Commandery from Cao Cao's forces. Guo Huai did not participate in the initial battles as he was ill. After Xiahou Yuan was killed in action at the Battle of Mount Dingjun in 219, there was much panic and fear among Cao Cao's forces in Hanzhong as they had lost their commander. Guo Huai managed to restore order and stability within Cao Cao’s forces in two ways: First, he gathered and regrouped the soldiers who scattered when Xiahou Yuan was killed. Second, he nominated Zhang He to replace Xiahou Yuan as the commander of Cao Cao's forces in Hanzhong.
The following day, when Cao Cao's forces received news that Liu Bei's forces were preparing to cross the Han River to attack them, most of Cao Cao's officers suggested that they should make camp on the riverbank and take advantage of the river as a natural barrier to resist the enemy, who had superiority in numbers. Guo Huai disagreed and said: "This isn't the best move because it reveals our weakness to the enemy and can't deter them. Why don't we make camp further away from the river, lure the enemy to attack our camp, and strike back when they are halfway across? We can defeat Liu Bei if we do this." Zhang He and the other officers followed Guo Huai's plan. When Liu Bei saw that the enemy camp was further away from the river, he became suspicious and did not send his troops across the river to attack. Guo Huai also ordered his troops to strengthen their defences and show Liu Bei's forces that they were prepared to hold their ground. Cao Cao was very pleased when he heard about what Guo Huai did. He also approved Zhang He's command and ordered Guo Huai to continue serving as a Major under Zhang He.
Service under Cao PiEdit
Following Cao Cao's death in March 220, his son Cao Pi succeeded him as the Imperial Chancellor and vassal King of Wei (魏王) under the Eastern Han dynasty. Cao Pi awarded Guo Huai the title of a Secondary Marquis (關內侯) and reassigned him to be the Chief Clerk (長史) under the General Who Guards the West (鎮西將軍).
Later that year, Cao Pi appointed Guo Huai as acting Army Protector Who Attacks the Qiang (征羌護軍) and ordered him to join Zhang He and Yang Qiu in leading imperial forces to attack Zheng Gan's (鄭甘) bandit forces and the Lushui barbarians (盧水胡) in the Guanzhong region. They succeeded in their mission and restored peace and stability in the Guanzhong region.
In late 220, Cao Pi usurped the throne from Emperor Xian, ended the Eastern Han dynasty, and established the Cao Wei (or Wei) state with himself as the new emperor. As Guo Huai fell sick on his journey to the imperial capital Luoyang and had to rest until he was well, he showed up late to congratulate Cao Pi on his coronation. Later, while hosting a banquet to celebrate his coronation, Cao Pi sternly asked Guo Huai in front of all the guests: "In the past, when Yu the Great called the nobles to attend an assembly at Tushan, Fangfeng showed up late and was executed as punishment. Today, you showed up late for the festivities. Why is that so?" Guo Huai replied: "I heard that the Five Emperors taught and ruled their people by virtue. The use of punishments started in the Xia dynasty when its rule began to weaken. Today, as I am living in an age comparable to that of Yao and Shun's time, I know that I won't face the same fate as Fangfeng."
Cao Pi was so pleased to hear Guo Huai's response that he appointed him as the acting Inspector (刺史) of Yong Province and enfeoffed him as the Marquis of Sheyang Village (射陽亭侯). Guo Huai was officially commissioned as the Inspector of Yong Province about five years later. Sometime between 220 and 226, Guo Huai led Wei forces to suppress a rebellion by the Qiang chieftain Biti (辟蹏) in Anding Commandery (安定郡; around present-day Zhenyuan County, Gansu). Whenever the Qiang and other tribal leaders in Yong Province expressed their willingness to submit to Wei rule, Guo Huai always sent his subordinates to gather information about their clans (e.g. demographics) first. When he spoke to the leaders, he surprised and impressed them with his knowledge about their clans. He also paid close attention to, and showed understanding towards the concerns they had. The people in Yong Province praised him as a brilliant and wise governor.
Service under Cao RuiEdit
In 228, Wei's rival state Shu Han (or Shu) launched the first of a series of invasions on Wei territories in Yong Province. Zhuge Liang, the Imperial Chancellor of Shu, led the campaign and deployed his troops at Mount Qi (祁山; the mountainous areas around present-day Li County, Gansu). He then sent Ma Su to lead the Shu vanguard to attack Jieting (街亭; in present-day Qin'an County, Gansu) and Gao Xiang to lead another force to station at Liucheng (柳城; in present-day Zhangjiachuan, Gansu) as backup for Ma Su. In response to this invasion, Zhang He led an army to attack Ma Su at the Battle of Jieting and inflicted a devastating defeat on the enemy. At the same time, Guo Huai also led a force to attack Gao Xiang's camp at Liucheng and succeeded in destroying it. Guo Huai then followed up by attacking Tangti (唐蹏), a rebellious Qiang tribal chief from Longxi Commandery (around present-day Longxi County, Gansu), and defeated him at Fuhan County (枹罕縣; southwest of present-day Linxia County, Gansu). The Wei government granted him the additional appointment of General Who Establishes Might (建威將軍) to honour him for his achievements.
Battle of JianweiEdit
In the spring of 229, when Shu forces led by Chen Shi attacked Wudu (武都; around present-day Cheng County, Gansu) and Yinping (陰平; present-day Wen County, Gansu) commanderies, Guo Huai led Wei forces to resist them. However, he retreated after Zhuge Liang led a Shu army to Jianwei (建威; in present-day Longnan, Gansu) as backup for Chen Shi. The Shu forces then conquered Wudu and Yinping commanderies.
Battle of Mount QiEdit
In 231, during the Battle of Mount Qi between Wei and Shu, when the Wei army ran short of food supplies, the Wei government considered transporting food supplies from the Guanzhong region to the frontline at Longxi Commandery because the granaries in Longxi were empty. Guo Huai turned to the local Qiang and Di tribes for aid and managed to convince them to donate food supplies to the Wei army. He then allocated them accordingly such that all units had sufficient food supplies. The Wei government reassigned him from his position as General Who Establishes Might (建威將軍) to General Who Spreads Martial Might (揚武將軍).
Battle of Wuzhang PlainsEdit
In 234, Guo Huai joined Sima Yi in leading Wei forces to resist another Shu invasion led by Zhuge Liang. When Sima Yi and his troops were stationed at the south of the Wei River, Guo Huai urged them to move to the plains on the north bank of the river as he foresaw that Zhuge Liang would attempt to seize the plains. When the other officers disagreed, Guo Huai said, "If Zhuge Liang crosses the Wei River and occupies those plains, his troops will have access to the mountains in the north. If they block the road through the mountains, it will cause fear and panic among the people living in the region. This isn't helpful to our State." Sima Yi agreed with Guo Huai and sent him to occupy the plains. While Guo Huai and his men were building a camp on the plains, they came under attack by Shu forces but managed to drive them back.
Several days later, when Guo Huai received news that Zhuge Liang was planning to launch an attack in the west, his subordinates wanted to strengthen the defences in the west. Guo Huai was the only one who recognised that it was a ruse, and that Zhuge Liang was actually planning to attack Yangsui (陽遂; the area north of the Wei River in present-day Mei and Fufeng counties, Shaanxi). He was proven right later as the Shu forces attacked Yangsui at night. However, as Guo Huai had set up defences earlier, the Shu forces failed to capture Yangsui.
Service under Cao FangEdit
In 240, the Shu general Jiang Wei continued Zhuge Liang's aggressive foreign policy towards Wei and launched the first of a series of invasions of Wei. Guo Huai led Wei forces to repel the invaders at Longxi Commandery and forced them into the territory of the Qiang tribes. After Jiang Wei and his troops retreated back to Shu, Guo Huai followed up by attacking the Qiang tribes led by Midang (迷當). He also managed to pacify more than 3,000 Di clans in the region and resettled them in the Guanzhong region. The Wei government promoted him to General of the Left (左將軍) in recognition of his achievements.
Resettling Xiongnu clans in Gaoping CountyEdit
Liang Yuanbi (梁元碧), a Xiongnu leader in Liang Province, led more than 2,000 clans to submit to Wei rule. Guo Huai wrote to the Wei government, requesting permission for the Xiongnu clans to be resettled in Gaoping County (高平縣; present-day Guyuan, Ningxia), Anding Commandery (安定郡). He also established the office of the Commandant of Xichuan (西川都尉) to oversee their safety. For his efforts, Guo Huai was promoted to General of the Vanguard (前將軍), in addition to his appointment as the Inspector (刺史) of Yong Province.
Pulling back from a campaign against ShuEdit
In 244, Guo Huai served as the vanguard commander when Xiahou Xuan led Wei forces to attack Shu. During the campaign, Guo Huai sensed that the Wei army was at a disadvantage so he pulled back his troops, and therefore was not greatly defeated. He was conferred imperial authority by the Wei government after returning from the campaign.
Second Shu invasionEdit
In 247, the Qiang tribes, led by Ehe (餓何), Shaoge (燒戈),[b] Fatong (伐同), Ezhesai (蛾遮塞) and others, started a rebellion against Wei in four commanderies: Longxi, Nan'an (南安; around present-day Wushan County, Gansu), Jincheng (金城; around present-day Lanzhou, Gansu) and Xiping (西平; around present-day Xining, Qinghai). They attacked several cities and towns in the area, and called for Shu forces to support them.
The Wei government ordered Xiahou Ba to lead troops to garrison at the flank. When Guo Huai and his forces showed up at Didao (狄道; around present-day Lintao County, Gansu), his advisers suggested that they should attack Fuhan County (枹罕縣; in present-day Linxia County, Gansu) and pacify the Qiang tribes first before dealing with the Shu invaders. Guo Huai predicted that Jiang Wei would attack Xiahou Ba's position, so he headed south to reinforce Xiahou Ba. As he expected, Jiang Wei did attack Xiahou Ba at the west of the Tao River, but retreated when Guo Huai and his reinforcements showed up. Guo Huai then moved on to attack the Qiang rebels, killed Ehe and Shaoge, and forced the thousands of Qiang clans to surrender.
Third Shu invasionEdit
In 248, Qiang rebels led by Ezhesai (蛾遮塞) occupied fortresses in Heguan (河關; in the vicinity of present-day Dingxi, Gansu) and Baitu (白土; in present-day Minhe County, Qinghai) counties and used them as defences against Wei forces across the Tao River. Guo Huai pretended that he was going to attack from upstream, but actually secretly ordered his troops to cross the river downstream to attack Baitu. The assault was successful and the rebels were defeated. Zhiwudai (治無戴) led his tribal forces to attack Wuwei Commandery but left his family in Xihai Commandery (西海郡; near the Juyan Lake Basin, Inner Mongolia). When Guo Huai learnt about it, he led his troops to attack Xihai Commandery, but encountered Zhiwudai and his forces, who were on their way back from Wuwei Commandery. The two armies clashed at the north of Longyi County (龍夷縣), with the Wei forces emerging victorious and Zhiwudai's forces retreating.
Jiang Wei led Shu forces from Shiying (石營; northwest of present-day Xihe County, Gansu) to Qiangchuan (彊川) to rendezvous with Zhiwudai and his retreating forces. He left Liao Hua behind in Chengzhong Mountain (成重山) to build a fortress and gather the remaining Qiang forces and keep them as hostages in the fortress. When Guo Huai heard about Jiang Wei's advances, he wanted to divide his forces into two groups to attack the enemy. His officers, however, had a different opinion. They expected to Jiang Wei to head west to meet Zhiwudai and combine their forces, while Liao Hua would remain behind to defend the Shu position at Chengzhong Mountain. If they split their army into two, their attacking power would be greatly reduced, and they might end up in a situation where they were able to neither resist Jiang Wei nor capture Liao Hua's position. They urged Guo Huai to concentrate on advancing westward to attack Jiang Wei and Zhiwudai separately before they could meet up.
Guo Huai stood by his initial plan and said, "If we attack Liao Hua, we can catch the enemy off guard. Jiang Wei will then definitely turn back to save Liao Hua. By the time he returns, we would have already defeated Liao Hua. By doing so, we can make Jiang Wei and his men weary from travelling forth and back. If Jiang Wei does not meet the barbarians, the barbarians will retreat on their own. This is the best approach." He then instructed Xiahou Ba to lead one detachment to pursue Jiang Wei towards Tazhong (沓中; northwest of present-day Zhugqu County, Gansu), while he led the other group to attack Liao Hua. As Guo Huai foresaw, Jiang Wei did turn back to save Liao Hua and failed to meet up with Zhiwudai. As a reward for his contributions, the Wei government promoted Guo Huai from a village marquis to a Marquis of a Chief District (都鄉侯).
Fourth Shu invasionEdit
In the autumn of 249, Jiang Wei led Shu forces on a fourth invasion of Wei and built two fortresses at Qushan (麴山; southeast of present-day Min County, Gansu), which were respectively guarded by the Shu officers Ju An (句安) and Li Xin (李歆). He also contacted the Qiang tribes and requested assistance from them in harassing the Wei-controlled commanderies in Yong Province. After discussing with Chen Tai, the Inspector of Yong Province, Guo Huai ordered him, Xu Zhi and Deng Ai to lead Wei forces to attack the Shu fortresses at Qushan and cut off their food and water supplies. Ju An and Li Xin led their men to taunt Deng Ai to attack them, but Deng Ai ignored them. As time passed, the two fortresses gradually ran out of supplies. Jiang Wei led his troops from Mount Niutou (牛頭山; west of present-day Zhaohua District, Guangyuan, Sichuan) to reinforce the fortresses. They encountered Chen Tai and his army along the way. Chen Tai ordered his army to build forts to resist Jiang Wei and his troops but refrain from engaging the enemy. At the same time, he also wrote to Guo Huai and requested his help in attacking Mount Niutou. Guo Huai did so and led his forces across the Tao River in preparation for attacking Mount Niutou.
After Jiang Wei retreated, Ju An and Li Xin became isolated at the Shu fortresses at Qushan, so they had no choice but to surrender to the Wei forces. Guo Huai then led his troops further west to attack the restless Qiang tribes and forced them to surrender.
Later life & deathEdit
In 250, the Wei emperor Cao Fang issued an imperial edict to praise Guo Huai for his contributions and achievements throughout his tenure of over 30 years in the Guanzhong region. He also promoted Guo Huai to General of Chariots and Cavalry (車騎將軍), granted him full imperial authority, and ordered him to be accorded treatment equivalent to that accorded to the Three Ducal Ministers. Guo Huai remained in charge of supervising military operations in Yong and Liang provinces.
Guo Huai was also promoted from a district marquis to a county marquis under the title "Marquis of Yangqu" (陽曲侯), with a marquisate comprising 2,780 taxable households. The Wei government then took out 300 households from his marquisate, created a new marquisate, and awarded it to one of his sons under a village marquis title. Guo Huai died on 23 February 255[a] during Cao Mao's reign. He was posthumously appointed as General-in-Chief (大將軍) and granted the posthumous title "Marquis Zhen" (貞侯).
Family and relativesEdit
Guo Huai married a younger sister of the Wei general Wang Ling. In 251, Wang Ling started a rebellion in Shouchun (壽春; around present-day Shou County, Anhui) against Wei but failed and ended up being captured. He committed suicide while being escorted as a prisoner to Luoyang. The Wei imperial court ordered the arrest and execution of his family members. When the imperial censors came to arrest Guo Huai's wife (because she was Wang Ling's sister), Guo Huai's subordinates and thousands of Qiang, Di and Xiongnu tribal leaders came to ask Guo Huai to beg the imperial court to spare his wife, but he reluctantly refused. As his wife was being taken away, many people who lined the path to see her off shed tears, tried to grab her hands, and even wanted to attack the guards to save her. Guo Huai's five sons came to see their father and kowtowed until their foreheads bled while begging their father to save their mother. Guo Huai, moved by his sons' filial piety, changed his mind and ordered his subordinates to bring his wife back. Thousands of Guo Huai's men pursued the imperial censors on horseback, caught up with them, and brought back Guo Huai's wife within a few days. Guo Huai then wrote a letter to the Wei regent Sima Yi: "My five sons are willing to sacrifice their lives for their mother. If they lose their mother, I lose them too. Without my five sons, I will no longer exist. If I have violated the law by seizing back my wife from the imperial censors, I am willing to see the Emperor and take full responsibility for my actions." After reading Guo Huai's letter, Sima Yi made an exception for Guo Huai's wife and pardoned her.
One of Guo Huai's sons, Guo Tong (郭統), inherited his father's peerage and became the next Marquis of Yangqu (陽曲侯). He also served under the Wei government and the highest appointment he held was Inspector (刺史) of Jing Province (covering present-day Hubei and Hunan). After Guo Tong's death, his son Guo Zheng (郭正) succeeded him as the next Marquis of Yangqu. Sometime between 264 and 265, the Wei government established a new five-rank nobility system and converted Guo Huai's peerage from the Marquis of Yangqu to the Viscount of Fenyang (汾陽子).
Guo Huai's younger brothers and their familiesEdit
Guo Pei (郭配), whose courtesy name was Zhongnan (仲南), served as the Administrator (太守) of Chengyang Commandery (城陽郡; around present-day southeastern Shandong). Guo Pei had at least two daughters: one of them married Pei Xiu; the other, named Guo Huai (郭槐), married Jia Chong. Guo Pei also had two sons: Guo Zhan (郭展), whose courtesy name was Taishu (泰舒); and Guo Yu (郭豫), whose courtesy name was Taining (泰寧). Guo Zhan performed well in office and rose to the position of Minister Coachman (太僕); Guo Yu served as a military adviser (參軍) to the Chancellor of State (相國), but died early. Guo Yu's daughter married Wang Yan (王衍; 256–311), a notable scholar of the early Western Jin dynasty.
Guo Zhen (郭鎮), whose courtesy name was Jinan (季南), served as a Supervisor of the Internuncios (謁者僕射). Guo Zhen's son, Guo Yi (郭弈), had the courtesy name Taiye (泰業) and served as the Inspector of Yong Province (雍州刺史) and a Master of Writing (尚書) during the Western Jin dynasty. Shan Tao, one of the Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove, once praised Guo Yi for being virtuous and magnanimous.
In popular cultureEdit
In Romance of the Three KingdomsEdit
Guo Huai is a minor character in the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, which romanticises the historical figures and events before and during the Three Kingdoms period of China. In the novel, he dies in 253 after being fatally wounded by an arrow fired by Jiang Wei during the sixth of Jiang Wei's Northern Expeditions.
Modern era depictionEdit
- The Sanguozhi recorded that Guo Huai died on the guiwei day of the 1st month of the 2nd year in the Zhengyuan era of Cao Mao's reign. This date corresponds to 23 February 255 in the Gregorian calendar.
- In the 14th-century historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguo Yanyi), Ehe and Shaoge are amalgamated into a single character, Ehe Shaoge, who has a minor role in Chapter 109.
- ([正元二年春正月]癸未，車騎將軍郭淮薨。) Sanguozhi vol. 4.
- de Crespigny (2007), p. 283.
- (郭淮字伯濟，太原陽曲人也。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (案郭氏譜：淮祖全，大司農；父縕，鴈門太守。) Guo Shipu annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (建安中舉孝廉，除平原府丞。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (文帝為五官將，召淮署為門下賊曹，轉為丞相兵曹議令史， ...) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- Zizhi Tongjian vol. 62.
- Zizhi Tongjian vol. 67.
- (... 從征漢中。太祖還，留征西將軍夏侯淵拒劉備，以淮為淵司馬。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- Zizhi Tongjian vol. 68.
- (淵與備戰，淮時有疾不出。淵遇害，軍中擾擾，淮收散卒，推盪寇將軍張郃為軍主，諸營乃定。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (其明日，備欲渡漢水來攻。諸將議衆寡不敵，備便乘勝，欲依水為陣以拒之。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (淮曰：「此示弱而不足挫敵，非筭也。不如遠水為陣，引而致之，半濟而後擊，備可破也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (旣陣，備疑不渡，淮遂堅守，示無還心。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (以狀聞，太祖善之，假郃節，復以淮為司馬。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- Zizhi Tongjian vol. 69.
- (文帝即王位，賜爵關內侯，轉為鎮西長史。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (又行征羌護軍，護左將軍張郃、冠軍將軍楊秋討山賊鄭甘、盧水叛胡，皆破平之。關中始定，民得安業。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (黃初元年，奉使賀文帝踐阼，而道路得疾，故計遠近為稽留。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (及群臣歡會，帝正色責之曰：「昔禹會諸侯於塗山，防風後至，便行大戮。今溥天同慶而卿最留遲，何也？」) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (淮對曰：「臣聞五帝先教導民以德，夏后政衰，始用刑辟。今臣遭唐虞之世，是以自知免於防風之誅也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (帝恱之，擢領雍州刺史，封射陽亭侯，五年為真。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (安定羗大帥辟蹏反，討破降之。每羌、胡來降，淮輙先使人推問其親理，男女多少，年歲長幼；及見，一二知其款曲，訊問周至，咸稱神明。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (太和二年，蜀相諸葛亮出祁山，遣將軍馬謖至街亭，高詳屯列柳城。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (張郃擊謖，淮攻詳營，皆破之。又破隴西名羌唐蹏於枹罕，加建威將軍。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- ([建興]七年，亮遣陳戒攻武都、陰平。魏雍州刺史郭淮率衆欲擊戒，亮自出至建威，淮退還，遂平二郡。) Sanguozhi vol. 35.
- Zizhi Tongjian vol. 71.
- (五年，蜀出鹵城。是時，隴右無穀，議欲關中大運， ...) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (... 淮以威恩撫循羌、胡，家使出穀，平其輸調，軍食用足，轉揚武將軍。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (青龍二年，諸葛亮出斜谷，並田于蘭坑。是時司馬宣王屯渭南；淮策亮必爭北原，宜先據之，議者多謂不然。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (淮曰：「若亮跨渭登原，連兵北山，隔絕隴道，搖盪民、夷，此非國之利也。」) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (宣王善之，淮遂屯北原。塹壘未成，蜀兵大至，淮逆擊之。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (後數日，亮盛兵西行，諸將皆謂欲攻西圍，淮獨以為此見形於西，欲使官兵重應之，必攻陽遂耳。其夜果攻陽遂，有備不得上。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (正始元年，蜀將羌維出隴西。淮遂進軍，追至彊中，維退，遂討羌迷當等，案撫柔氐三千餘落，拔徙以實關中。遷左將軍。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (涼州休屠胡梁元碧等，率種落二千餘家附雍州。淮奏請使居安定之高平，為民保鄣，其後因置西川都尉。轉拜前將軍，領州如故。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (五年，夏侯玄伐蜀，淮督諸軍為前鋒。淮度勢不利，輙拔軍出，故不大敗。還假淮節。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (八年，隴西、南安、金城、西平諸羌餓何、燒戈、伐同、蛾遮塞等相結叛亂，攻圍城邑，南招蜀兵，涼州名胡治無戴復叛應之。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (討蜀護軍夏侯霸督諸軍屯為翅。淮軍始到狄道，議者僉謂宜先討定枹罕，內平惡羌，外折賊謀。淮策維必來攻霸，遂入渢中，轉南迎霸。維果攻為翅，會淮軍適至，維遁退。進討叛羌，斬餓何、燒戈，降服者萬餘落。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (九年，遮塞等屯河關、白土故城，據河拒軍。淮見形上流，密於下渡兵據白土城，擊，大破之。治無戴圍武威，家屬留在西海。淮進軍趨西海，欲掩取其累重，會無戴折還，與戰於龍夷之北，破走之。令居惡虜在石頭山之西，當大道止，斷絕王使。淮還過討，大破之。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (姜維出石營，從彊川，乃西迎治無戴，留陰平太守廖化於成重山築城，斂破羌保質。淮欲分兵取之。諸將以維衆西接彊胡，化以據險，分軍兩持，兵勢轉弱，進不制維，退不拔化，非計也，不如合而俱西，及胡、蜀未接，絕其內外，此伐交之兵也。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (淮曰：「今往取化，出賊不意，維必狼顧。比維自致，足以定化，且使維疲於奔命。兵不遠西，而胡交自離，此一舉而兩全之策也。」乃別遣夏侯霸等追維於沓中，淮自率諸軍就攻化等。維果馳還救化，皆如淮計。進封都鄉侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (嘉平元年，遷征西將軍，都督雍、涼諸軍事。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (秋，漢衞將軍姜維寇雍州，依麴山築二城，使牙門將句安、李歆等守之，聚羌胡質任，侵偪諸郡；征西將軍郭淮與雍州刺史陳泰禦之。) Zizhi Tongjian vol. 75.
- (淮從泰計，使泰率討蜀護軍徐質、南安太守鄧艾等進兵圍之，斷其運道及城外流水。安等挑戰，不許，將士困窘，分糧聚雪以稽日月。維果來救，出自牛頭山，與泰相對。 ... 勑諸軍各堅壘勿與戰，遣使白淮，欲自南渡白水，循水而東，使淮趣牛頭，截其還路，可并取維，不惟安等而已。淮善其策，進率諸軍軍洮水。維懼，遁走，安等孤縣，遂皆降。) Sanguozhi vol. 22.
- (淮乃使泰率討蜀護軍徐質、南安太守鄧艾進兵圍麴城，斷其運道及城外流水。安等挑戰，不許，將士困窘，分糧聚雪以引日月。維引兵救之，出自牛頭山，與泰相對。 ... 敕諸軍各堅壘勿與戰，遣使白淮，使淮趣牛頭截其還路。淮從之，進軍洮水。) Zizhi Tongjian vol. 75.
- (秋，衞將軍姜維出攻雍州，不克而還。將軍句安、李韶降魏。) Sanguozhi vol. 33.
- (維懼，遁走，安等孤絕，遂降。淮因西擊諸羌。) Zizhi Tongjian vol. 75.
- (是歲，與雍州刺史陳泰恊策，降蜀牙門將句安等於翅上。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (二年，詔曰：「昔漢川之役，幾至傾覆。淮臨危濟難，功書王府。在關右三十餘年，外征寇虜，內綏民夷。比歲以來，摧破廖化，禽虜句安，功績顯著，朕甚嘉之。今以淮為車騎將軍、儀同三司，持節、都督如故。」) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (進封陽曲侯，邑凡二千七百八十戶，分三百戶，封一子亭侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (正元二年薨，追贈大將軍，謚曰貞侯。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (世語曰：淮妻，王淩之妹。淩誅，妹當從坐，御史往收。督將及羌、胡渠帥數千人叩頭請淮表留妻，淮不從。妻上道，莫不流涕，人人扼腕，欲劫留之。淮五子叩頭流血請淮，淮不忍視，乃命左右追妻。於是追者數千騎，數日而還。淮以書白司馬宣王曰：「五子哀母，不惜其身；若無其母，是無五子；無五子，亦無淮也。今輒追還，若於法未通，當受罪於主者，覲展在近。」書至，宣王亦宥之。) Shiyu annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (子統嗣。統官至荊州刺史，薨。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (子正嗣。咸熈中，開建五等，以淮著勳前朝，改封汾陽子。) Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- ([賈]充婦廣城君郭槐， ... 後娶城陽太守郭配女，即廣城君也。) Jin Shu vol. 40.
- (晉諸公贊曰：淮弟配，字仲南，有重名，位至城陽太守。裴秀、賈充皆配女壻。子展，字泰舒。有器度幹用，歷職著績，終於太僕。次弟豫，字泰寧，相國參軍，知名，早卒。女適王衍。) Jin Zhugong Zan annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- Theobald, Ulrich (28 February 2013). "Wang Yan 王衍". ChinaKnowledge.de. Retrieved 2 December 2017.
- (配弟鎮，字季南，謁者僕射。鎮子弈，字泰業。山濤啟事稱弈高簡有雅量，歷位雍州刺史、尚書。) Jin Zhugong Zan annotation in Sanguozhi vol. 26.
- (郭祚，字季祐，太原晉陽人，魏車騎郭淮弟亮後也。) Wei Shu vol. 64.
- Sanguo Yanyi ch. 109.
- Chen, Shou (3rd century). Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi).
- de Crespigny, Rafe (2007). A Biographical Dictionary of Later Han to the Three Kingdoms 23-220 AD. Leiden: Brill. ISBN 9789004156050.
- Fang, Xuanling (648). Book of Jin (Jin Shu).
- Luo, Guanzhong (14th century). Romance of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguo Yanyi).
- Pei, Songzhi (5th century). Annotations to Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi zhu).
- Sima, Guang (1084). Zizhi Tongjian.
- Wei, Shou (6th century). Book of Wei (Wei Shu).