Liu Bingzhong

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Liu Bingzhong (Chinese: 劉秉忠; 1216–1274), or Liu Kan (Chinese: 劉侃) was a Yuan dynasty court adviser and architect. He was born in Ruizhou (Rui prefecture), during the Jin dynasty. In 1233, he entered the Jin's bureaucracy. He still was an officer after the Mongol Empire conquered the Jin following the Mongol–Jin wars, but later he became a monk. However his teacher thought that his talent should not be buried, so he recommended Liu Bingzhong to Kublai Khan, to become his adviser. During this period, he was extolled as the Five Talented in Xintai. He was credited with occult powers which allowed him to foretell the future and so assist military operations.[1] Liu had a paramount influence on Yuan era city designs, and he is known to have planned both the Yuan capital of Dadu and its summer capital Xanadu (Shangdu).[2][3]

Liu Bingzhong and Yao Shu made a plan "to canvass all talented to give well-governorship suggestions".[clarification needed] Many Confucianists, such as Xu Heng, Wang Xun, Zhang Yi, were attracted to provide ruse to Kublai Khan, who later became the founder of the Yuan Dynasty.[clarification needed]

After the Battle of Diaoyu Fortress, Möngke Khan died and Kublai Khan succeeded his post. Liu Bingzhong suggested to name the new dynasty as "Da Yuan" (Chinese: 大元; "Great Yuan") with reference to I Ching, which was adopted by Kublai Khan in 1271. He also suggested Kublai Khan adopt Chinese law over that of Mongol law, and removed some Mongolian misgovernment.

Kublai Khan recognized Jin's Central Capital as the capital of the Yuan, and renamed it to Dadu ("Great Capital"). Liu Bingzhong was the planner and the original architect of the Capital Construction of Dadu. Liu also designed and planned the layout of the Yuan's summer capital at Xanadu (Shangdu).[4][5] Liu formulated the Time Service Calendar with Guo Shoujing. When he became the teacher of Zhenjin, who later became the Crown Prince (Chinese: 皇太子), he set up the Zishan College in Wuon Mountain to teach Confucianism and Natural Science.

In 1274, he died in Nanbing Mountain Villa.

Literary Work[edit]

  • Spring Corpus 藏春集 (6 volumes);
  • Spring Poetry Anthology 藏春词;
  • Poetry Anthology 诗集 (22 volumes);
  • Corpus 文集 (10 volumes);
  • Pingsha Jade Ruler 平沙玉尺 (4 volumes);
  • Jade Ruler and New Mirror 玉尺新镜 (2 volumes).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Perry Link (2009), The scholar's mind, ISBN 9789629964030
  2. ^ China archaeology and art digest. Vol. 4. Art Text (HK) Ltd., original from the University of Michigan. 2001. p. 35.
  3. ^ Nancy Shatzman Steinhardt (1999). Chinese imperial city planning. University of Hawaii Press. p. 153. ISBN 0-8248-2196-3.
  4. ^ Frederick W. Mote (2003). Imperial China 900-1800. Harvard University Press. p. 457. ISBN 0-674-01212-7.
  5. ^ Ainslie Thomas Embree (1988). Encyclopedia of Asian history, Volume 2. Scribner, original from University of Michigan. p. 366. ISBN 0-684-18899-6.