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Persons in Chinese Mythology - Di Zhi 帝摯

Zhi 摯 or Di Zhi 帝摯 was one of the mythological Five Emperors 五帝 of prehistoric China. He was the oldest son of Emperor Di Ku 帝嚳 (his mother was Lady Zouzi 諏訾氏) and succeeded him to the throne. His half-brother Fangxun 放勳 (i.e. Emperor Yao 堯) was enfeoffed as Marquis of Tang 唐侯. Di Zhi created state offices whose designations had the names of birds (Fengniao 風鳥氏, Xuanniao 玄鳥氏, Bozhao 伯趙氏, Qingniao 青鳥氏, Danniao 丹鳥氏, Zhuniao 祝鳥氏, Jujiu 鴡鳩氏, Shijiu 鳲鳩氏, Shuangjiu 爽鳩氏, Gujiu 鶻鳩氏, Wuzhi 五雉 or Jiuhu 九扈). The most important ministers were that of works (gongzheng 工正) and that of agriculture (nongzheng 農正).
Di Zhi ruled for only nine years before he became aware that he was a less virtuous ruler than Fang Xun. He therefore decided to cease the throne to his brother. Other sources say that Di Zhi died after a short rule.
Di Zhi is also identified as the same person like Emperor Shao Hao 少皞 (also written 少昊), called Lord Jintian 金天氏. Shao Hao succeeded Emperor Tai Hao 太皞 (太昊), identified with Fu Xi 伏羲, who resided in Yan 奄 (modern Qufu 曲阜, Shandong). Shao Hao is said to have ruled for 84 years. His descendants lived in the small fief of Tan 郯 during the Spring and Autumn period 春秋 (770-5th cent. BCE). Shao Hao ruled over the west and is also called the White Emperor (Bai Di 白帝).


Sources:
Chen Quanli 陳全力, Hou Xinyi 侯欣一 (ed. 1988). Diwang cidian 帝王辭典, p. 4. Xi'an: Shaanxi renmin jiaoyu chubanshe.
Xiong Tieji 熊鐵基, Yang Youli 楊有禮 (ed. 1994). Zhongguo diwang zaixiang cidian 中國帝王宰相辭典, pp. 5, 6, 7. Wuhan: Hubei jiaoyu chubanshe.
Yuan Ke 袁珂 (ed. 1985). Zhongguo shenhua chuanshuo cidian 中國神話傳說詞典, p. 132. Shanghai: Shanghai cishu chubanshe.
Zhang Huizhi 張撝之, Shen Qihui 沈起煒, Liu Dezhong 劉德重 (ed. 1999). Zhongguo lidai renming da cidian 中國歷代人名大辭典, vol. 2, p. 1762. Shanghai: Shanghai guji chubanshe.

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age of mythology and early history (-11th cent. BCE)

Zhou period (11th cent.-221 BCE) and the state of Qin (3rd cent.-206 BCE)

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age of division (220-581)

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February 5, 2012 © · Ulrich Theobald · Mail