Zisang Bozi

There is a lot of speculation surrounding the identity of Zisang Bozi (桑伯子). The most popular theory is that he was an itinerant Daoist sage whom Confucius was said to have once met while walking around the countryside and found to be robust and straightforward but lacking in sophistication and refinement. This would fit with the overriding message of Chapter II of Book 6, the only passage in which he is mentioned in the Analects, though of course it doesn’t mean that this theory is correct. Continue reading Zisang Bozi

Ji Wenzi

Ji Wenzi (季文子) was the posthumous title given to Jisun Xingfu (季孫行父), the most influential minister in Confucius’s home state of Lu (魯) between 600 and 568 BC. Ji was also the head of the the Jisun (季孫) clan, one of the notorious Three Families that ran the state in reality if not in name. Known for his austere lifestyle, he died 568 BC – over fifteen years before the birth of Confucius in 551 BC. Continue reading Ji Wenzi


Cuizi (崔子) was a high-ranking minister in the state of Qi (齊), and is said to have assassinated its ruler Duke Zhuang (齊莊公) in 548 BC after discovering that the duke was having a secret affair with his wife Tang Jiang (棠姜). Although he ensured the succession of the dead duke’s brother, Duke Jing (齊景公), to the throne and thus maintained his ministerial position, Cuizi lost out in a political struggle against a fellow collaborator in the murder called Qing Feng (慶封), who ordered his whole family to be killed. In 546 BC, Cuizi committed suicide. Continue reading Cuizi