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Duke Ding of Lu

Duke Ding (魯定公) was the predecessor of Duke Ai (哀公) as the ruler of Lu, and reigned from around 509 to 495 BC. Although responsible for elevating Confucius to his highest official position as Minister of Justice (大司寇) of Lu, the duke was ultimately at least indirectly responsible for Confucius’s decision to go into exile because of his inability to control the Three Families, who were the de facto rulers of the state. Indeed, Duke Ding was said to be so weak that he was the kind of ruler who “held the blade of the sword and offered the handle to his enemies.” Continue reading Duke Ding of Lu