Liu Pi, Prince of Wu

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Liu Pi (simplified Chinese: 刘濞; traditional Chinese: 劉濞; pinyin: Liú Pì; 216–154 BC) was a nephew of Emperor Gao of Han, son of Liu Xi, Prince of Dai, and appointed Prince of Wu by Emperor Gao. During the reign of Emperor Jing, he initiated the Rebellion of the Seven States to resist the Emperor's centralizing policies, during which he was defeated and killed.[1]

Liu Pi
Marquess of Pei
Tenure196 BC - 195 BC
King of Wu
Reign195 BC - 154 BC
Born216 BC
Died154 BC (aged 61-62)
  • Liu Xian (劉賢), Crown Prince of Wu State
  • Liu Zihua (劉子華)
  • Liu Ju (劉駒)
Full name
Family name: Liu ()
Given name: Pi ()
HouseHouse of Liu
FatherLiu Xi, King Qing of Dai


In 196 BC, he was made Marquess of Pei at the age of 20. He demonstrated his combat ability as a cavalry general in the campaign against Ying Bu. In 195 BC, Emperor Gao promoted Liu Pi to Prince of Wu due to his growing concerns about the Wu provinces.[2]

When Emperor Wen of Han was on the throne, Liu Pi's son Liu Xian and Crown Prince Qi (later Emperor Jing of Han) were involved in a game of Liubo which ended in the crown prince accidentally killing Liu Pi's son with the chess board. Out of revenge and reflecting his growing distrust of the Emperor, Liu Pi started building up his wealth and military power within his territory. Emperor Wen believed his son was at fault for Liu Xian's death and did not hold Liu Pi accountable for his aggressive actions.[3]

After Crown Prince Qi ascended to the throne and became Emperor Jing of Han, based on the advice from Chao Cuo, Emperor Jing began to centralize power in an attempt to reduce the strength of the regional princes. In 154 BC, Liu Pi convinced six other princes to rebel against the emperor, thereby starting the Rebellion of the Seven States. The emperor appointed Zhou Yafu as commander and he defeated Liu Pi's army. Liu Pi was killed during the battle and his title was abolished.[1]


  1. ^ a b Ban Biao; Ban Gu; Ban Zhao. "荊燕吳傳" [Biographies of the Princes of Jing, Yan and Wu]. Book of Han (in Chinese). Volume 35. Retrieved 16 June 2011.
  2. ^ Ban Biao; Ban Gu; Ban Zhao. "諸侯王表" [Table of nobles related to the imperial clan]. Book of Han (in Chinese). Volume 14. Retrieved 16 June 2011.
  3. ^ Sima Qian. "吳王濞列傳" [Biographies of Pi, the Prince of Wu]. Records of the Grand Historian (in Chinese). Volume 106. Retrieved 12 July 2011.
Liu Pi
Born: 216 BC Died: 154 BC
Chinese royalty
New creation Marquess of Pei
196 BC – 195 BC
Enfeoffed as King of Wu
Chinese nobility
New creation King of Wu
195 BC – 154 BC
Demoted due to Rebellion of the Seven States