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Battle of Hanzhong

Date 230
Location Hanzhong, Liang Province
Result Shu victory
Forces
Shu Wei
Commanders
Hu Ban
Wu Yi
Ma Zheng
Zhang Ni
Zhang He
Dai Ling

The Battle of Hanzhong was an engagement between the Shu and Wei forces.

Battle[]

Zhuge Liang was intending to retreat to Hanzhong after the failure of his northern expedition. Jiang Wei and Liao Hua were called, and Zhuge Liang said, "I am going to give you a silken bag. You are to proceed secretly into those mountains in front. When you see that Zhang Yi and Wang Ping are in great straits with the enemy, then open the bag and you will find a plan of escape." After this he gave secret instructions to four other generals---Hu Ban, Wu Yi, Ma Zheng, and Zhang Ni---to observe the enemy and, if the enemy seemed confident of victory, to retire, fighting at intervals, till they saw Guan Xing come up, when they could turn and fight their best. Then calling Guan Xing, he said to them, "Hide in the valleys with five thousand troops till you see a red flag flutter out, and then fall on the enemy." Zhang He and Dai Ling hurried along like a rain squall till they were suddenly confronted by Ma Zheng, Zhang Ni, Wu Yi, and Hu Ban. Zhang He dashed toward his enemy, and then they retired, stopping at intervals to fight. The Wei army pursued for about seven miles.

It was very hot, so that soldiers and horses sweated profusely. When they had gone ten miles farther, the soldiers and horses were panting and nearly spent. Then Zhuge Liang, who had watched the fighting from a hill, gave the signal for Guan Xing to emerge and join battle. Ma Zheng, Zhang Ni, Hu Ban, and Wu Yi all led on their troops. Zhang He and Dai Ling fought well, but they could not extricate themselves.

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