Dong Zhuo's Forces
183 cm (6')
|Weapon Type:|| Broadsword (2~3)|
Serrated sword (4~5)
Chain mace (7)
Bombs (Next, WO3, 7:E, 8)
|Playable Debut:||Dynasty Warriors 2|
|Real name:|| |
|Chinese name:|| |
|Style name:|| |
|Chinese name:|| |
仲穎 - 仲颖
May 22, 192
|Possibly born in 138.|
|Mystic Weapon:|| |
|Personal Item:|| |
Goblet of Paradise
Dong Zhuo (onyomi: Tō Taku) started as a minor warlord with formidable martial capabilities who gradually rose to power by subjugating forces west of the imperial capital. He is best known for effectively forcing himself to be the de facto leader of the land by dwindling the Han Dynasty's influence. His tyranny lasted for four years and was cut short when his step-son, Lu Bu, killed him.
His Dynasty Warriors counterpart is fifty-seventh place in Gamecity's Dynasty Warriors 7 character popularity poll and sixty-fifth in the Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends poll. The latest poll for the eighth installment puts him in seventy-sixth.
Role in GamesEdit
- "You're so big and strong... I love a challenge."
- ~~Nō; Warriors Orochi
Dong Zhuo is an imperial general who took advantage of the turmoil of the Yellow Turban Rebellion by deposing the Emperor and supporting a young heir. He becomes Prime Minister and a tyrant, causing the people to suffer. A coalition formed by Yuan Shao rises against him at Hu Lao and Si Shui Gates. Dong Zhuo faces them with his generals, which include Lu Bu, Zhang Liao, and Diao Chan. In other character's stories, he is killed during these battles. The long term effects of his brief period of power, however, echoes for decades, as most the private army warlords that had gathered to fight him and the Yellow Turbans lose faith in the Han Dynasty. His death begins the competition among them for power over China.
In Dynasty Warriors 3: Xtreme Legends, Dong Zhuo defeats the alliance at Hu Lao Gate, scattering their leaders and killing Yuan Shao. He quickly sets out to bring the rest of China under his control, defeating Cao Cao at Guan Du and Sun Ce at He Fei. After putting the lands of Wu under Lu Bu's direct control, Dong Zhuo deposes the Emperor and confronts Liu Bei's large army, intent on restoring the Han Dynasty. He destroys the kingdom of Shu, only to find that his greatest warrior, Lu Bu, and Diao Chan have revolted against him. His fleet engages Lu Bu's army at Chi Bi, and despite the aid to Lu Bu from the remnants of Wu and Shu, Dong Zhuo is victorious over the seemingly indomitable Lu Bu, uniting China under his rule.
His Musou Mode in Dynasty Warriors 4 remains similar to his previous story with a few differences. In this title, he destroys the coalition, Sun Jian, Liu Bei, and Cao Cao. After he reigns supreme over his rivals, Lu Bu revolts with only his most loyal generals.
Dong Zhuo's legend mode in the Xtreme Legends expansion details his encounter with the corrupt Ten Eunuchs. In an effort to try to save the emperor from them, He Jin plans to slay them. However, the eunuchs murder him and try to hide from their crime. Knowing that the eunuchs still remain in the capital, Dong Zhuo orders them to be exterminated at once. Three have already been caught and slain, but Dong Zhuo decides to personally kill the fleeing seven to spark his true ambition. After he slays the final eunuch, he escorts the emperor's carriage back to the capital and declares himself to be the new royal protector.
In Dynasty Warriors 5, Dong Zhuo defends his home in Xi Liang from the influence of the Yellow Turbans. Zhang Jiao dies and, while he is content to remain in his home, he is suddenly attacked by Ma Teng and the forces of Liang. He retaliates by driving them back and slaying Ma Teng. When the eunuchs rebel in the capital, Dong Zhuo saves the child Emperor Xian and places him on the throne. His action upsets the regional lords and they attack him at Si Shui and Hu Lao Gates. Putting an end to all who oppose him, Dong Zhuo's reign of terror continues, and he creates the "paradise" that he has always wanted. However, it is implied that his rule would not last for very long as his one of his mistresses conspires for his downfall.
Dong Zhuo shares his Legend Mode in the Xtreme Legends expansion with Yuan Shao. Both men desire to save the emperor from the eunuch's plot, but both have different desires in the battle. While Yuan Shao wants to save He Jin and liberate the court, Dong Zhuo plots for the simultaneous death of the general and the eunuchs. Using the tragedies as his pedestal, Dong Zhuo desires to gain a higher influence in the Imperial Court. Once the eunuchs are destroyed and the emperor is saved, Dong Zhuo berates the politicians for trying to stand against him. He is pleased to be one step closer to his indulgent paradise.
He continues to be the main antagonist at Hu Lao Gate in the following title. He dies there with his ambitions left unfulfilled, but is spontaneously revived from beyond the grave in Lu Bu's story. He at first teams up with Zhang Jiao to avenge the grudge he feels due to Lu Bu's betrayal, but they eventually join with the leaders of the Three Kingdoms and Yuan Shao to end his former general. He is among the many who is killed by Lu Bu in his ending.
During the Three Kingdoms' Story Modes in Dynasty Warriors 7, Dong Zhuo makes his earliest appearance in Liang Province. As Sun Jian's military superior in the campaign to suppress the Xiliang forces, he bosses around the father and his children to obey his every command and complains when they don't rescue him from danger. Once Sun Ce routs Ma Chao, Dong Zhuo ruthlessly charges his men to slaughter every rebel within the vicinity. Sun Ce protests, but Dong Zhuo is too enthralled by the thrill of the hunt to listen. After these rebellions are quelled Dong Zhuo heads south and claims himself the protector of the capital and child emperor. Thinking that the devious man would serve him, he orders Cao Cao within Luoyang to serve him. He is upset when the lord refuses and orders for his execution. His actions and participation in battle are relatively the same as other titles, but the narrative emphasizes his atrocious burning and slaughtering of innocent people. Like most titles, he is eventually killed off screen by Lu Bu.
His first Legendary Battle has Dong Zhuo claim his right for Diao Chan's affections, causing him to antagonize his relations with Lu Bu. He is surrounded at Luoyang by the forces rallied against him in his secondary Legendary Battle. His main goal aside from defeating Yuan Shao and Cao Cao is killing Lu Bu for his treachery.
The Xtreme Legends expansion details Dong Zhuo's escape from Luoyang. The coalition against him has gained ground and are threatening to slay him. Therefore, he orders his men to retreat with the Emperor. Since his retainers are being overwhelmed by the coalition officers, Dong Zhuo has to rescue them in order to achieve victory. Once he meets his destination outside the capital, he scorns his opposition and enjoys his outstanding longevity.
In Dynasty Warriors Next, Dong Zhuo serves as the antagonist of the second chapter. He personally leads the resistance against the coalition at Hulao Gate only to be defeated in a duel by Xiahou Dun. After razing the capital, he makes his way to Chang'an while impeding the pursuing Cao Cao with tigers. He uses every tactic at his disposal to repel the other warlords, even releasing wild animals to scatter their numbers. However, Lu Bu and Diaochan's sudden betrayal forces him into lead a full-out assault out of desperation, leading to his death at the hands of Cao Cao. Players can only control Dong Zhuo in Conquest Mode.
In Dynasty Warriors 8, Dong Zhuo's version of Hulao Gate has him seek out Diaochan who had gone missing on the battlefield. After leaving the capital in flames, he makes his way through the front lines to search for her while clashing with numerous officers of the allied forces. Upon discovering Diaochan and Lu Bu near the enemy camp, the two of them attempt to kill their master only to be subdued in the end. With Lu Bu dead, Dong Zhuo forcefully takes the dancing maiden for himself and makes plans to build a new paradise.
In the Xtreme Legends expansion, Dong Zhuo is given two additional scenarios. In the first, his and Yuan Shao's armies clash at Hulao Gate to determine who shall take control of the Han. In this scenario, Dong Zhuo's army consists of several new officers who canonically opposed him, including Sun Jian, Jia Xu, and Yuan Shu. If Dong Zhuo is able to cut through Yuan Shao's defenses quickly enough, several of Yuan Shao's officers will defect to Dong Zhuo's side. As Dong Zhuo's army closes in on Yuan Shao, they are suddenly ambushed by Ding Yuan and Lu Bu. Unfettered, Dong Zhuo slays them both before slaying Yuan Shao and solidifying his rule over the Han.
In the second scenario, Dong Zhuo, in an attempt to eliminate his rivals, invites them to a tournament to determine the mightiest warrior in the land, but in reality it is a trap to kill all his rivals in one fell swoop. However, after Dong Zhuo wins the tournament, it is revealed that his rivals anticipated the trap and took control of Xuchang and the Emperor while Dong Zhuo was focused on the tournament. Dong Zhuo must "rescue" the Emperor before the coalition can extract him from Xuchang, then defeat his remaining rivals.
In Lu Bu's story, Dong Zhuo first appears in the fight to exterminate the Ten Eunuchs at Luoyang. After the last eunuchs is killed he offers Lu Bu the chance to serve him which is quickly accepted. When Yuan Shao, Cao Cao and other disgruntled warlords band together to face Dong Zhuo at Hulao Gate, the tyrant decides to flee with the emperor as Lu Bu and Zhang Liao cover his retreat. After the coalition disbanded, Dong Zhuo hoped to use Chang'an as his paradise until Diaochan convinces Lu Bu to turns on him and ultimately kill him as Dong Zhuo tries in vain to escape.
In Warriors Orochi, Dong Zhuo willingly serves under Orochi and is the first person to be scouted by Da Ji. Dong Zhuo only agrees to fight the Serpent King since he promises wealth and treasure for him. In both games, he is loyal to Orochi. A Gaiden stage in the first title has Hideyoshi interrupt his gold shipment, which angers Dong Zhuo and makes him lose faith in Orochi. The tyrant forsakes his servitude if he doesn't receive any gold and decides to join Nobunaga.
After the events of the first title, Dong Zhuo goes back to his pillaging ways for his ideal paradise in the sequel. He attacks villagers and Zhang Jiao's followers in Lou Sang Village, and is driven away by Sakon and Fu Xi. He is also seen supporting Da Ji and doing other acts of villainy throughout the game. When Orochi is resurrected, Dong Zhuo continues to serve his master.
He shares his dream stage with Kunoichi and Magoichi. He hires the two mercenaries to act as his bodyguards to protect his stolen treasure through Hasedō. He claims to have gotten the loot fair-and-square, but he actually stole it from Yuan Shao. When his treasure is transported, the local villagers mistakenly thank Dong Zhuo's treasure as a kind donation for their home. Dong Zhuo denies the claim but has his treasure given to them.
Dong Zhuo continues his allegiance to the serpent army in Warriors Orochi 3 with hopes of one day creating his paradise. He holds several maidens hostage for himself at Xuchang, and uses them as hostages to force other generals such as Nagamasa Azai, Liu Shan, Kiyomasa Kato and Katsuie Shibata to help the demons. When the coalition returns to Da Ji's past, he is found near Chengdu. Having just realized that he can do whatever he wants, he starts his conquest by terrorizing the nearby peasantry. Upon his defeat by the future coalition, Zhuge Liang orders him to be their prisoner to prevent his allegiance to the serpent forces. Left with no other options, Dong Zhuo then begrudgingly fights for the coalition.
Dong Zhuo appears as an antagonist in most of the downloadable stages. In "In Vino Veritas", he is one of the generals who run amok after drinking too much. In "Virtue's Burden", he traps helpless peasants within the flamed battlefield as he fights the Oda army, Joan, Liu Bei and Ieyasu. Dong Zhuo stars in "Dong Zhuo's Ambition" where he seeks to create his dream paradise. Although he successfully traps several beautiful women, they are set free by Magoichi, Taigong Wang and Ryu. In "Animal Rescue", Dong Zhuo is tricked by Yuan Shao into kidnapping wolves, believing that their livers will make the ultimate love potion. In "Zhong Hui's Pride", Dong Zhuo supervises Zhong Hui to capture women, only for the Jin officer to mutiny. In "Heroes of Luoyang", Dong Zhuo is holding maidens hostage within Luoyang until Ma Chao and company ride in and free the hostages.
In the Ultimate expansion, Dong Zhuo is still stationed at Xuchang, but he is no longer affiliated with the Demon Army or Da Ji. During his tenure, he is attacked by Yuan Shao's forces, who claim that Dong had attacked them. Despite Zhong Hui's attempts to reason with the enemy army, Sima Zhao still remained hostile. In their haste, they end up defeating Shennong, who attempted to clear up to misunderstanding. After the battle, Dong Zhuo pledged his own allegiance to Shennong's cause, allowing Zhong Hui to assist the mystic. In the altered version of the stage, the Divine Mirror is able to identify both Sima Zhao and Yuan Shao as fakes, though it does not stop Dong Zhuo from still ordering attacks on Shennong upon their arrival.
Dong Zhuo is a supremely egotistical and ruthless tyrant who has a penchant for labeling those who oppose him as "insects", "vermin", and "bugs" that should be squashed. He relies heavily on his most capable officers, such as Lu Bu, Hua Xiong, and Zhang Liao, and will not personally enter a battle unless he is left with little choice. Bad tempered and rude, he loves to lavish himself in luxury with fine wine, treasure, and women.
He's also somewhat pampered and helpless, and unwilling to fight for himself. He often dies calling out for the aid of his soldiers or Lu Bu as he did in the novel.
Dong Zhuo has his own plans to create his Grand Paradise once he rules the land. His dreams for the Paradise consist of Dong Zhuo being surrounded by all the beautiful women of China, as well as all the gold in the land. In the Asian script, he calls his paradise, "jiǔ chí ròu lín" (酒池肉林), which is associated with promiscuity and Da Ji.
In the Japanese version of Dynasty Warriors 4: Empires, Dong Zhuo is given the nickname of "The Demonic Ruler" while the English version changes it to "The Tyrant who Brings Chaos". As a dominant ruler in Dynasty Warriors 5: Empires, he along with Cao Cao and Sima Yi call their five greatest warriors the "Five Great Generals".
His Level 11 Weapon in the Asian ports shares the same name for a god of Hell in East Asian mythology and their practices of Buddhism. He would serve as a ferocious judge for a dead spirit, deciding where they would live in the afterlife. In certain legends, it is also possible for a human to eventually become a judge themselves.
The original name for his third weapon takes its namesake from beings in Hinduism, Rakshasa. They are famous for being malevolent tricksters with little to no respect for the dearly departed. Rakshasa, like people, are all different in nature and are rarely fit a single term, seeming to serve and associate with whoever pleases them. In Buddhism, they are equated to devils or ogres with zealous swordplay.
Dong Zhuo's fourth weapon is named after another godly set of beings within Hinduism and Buddhism worship, Asura. Ancient Hinduism equates them as a power hungry spirits, sometimes depicted as war mongrels in their quest for strength. Buddhism depicts them as beings who would always feel anxiety and are ready for a fight. They are considered failed incarnations for a human spirit, destined to never fully satisfy their desires.
All of Dong Zhuo's weapons take their inspiration from various forms from other evil spirits in Dynasty Warriors 6. Their names are King of Demons (Standard), Leader of Demons (Skill), and God of Demons (Strength).
His original personal item in Warriors Orochi is the Nine Bestowments, nine gifts from royalty to a vassal signaling the passing of power. Historically, Cao Cao accepted the gifts in mere gratitude and was adamant to accept them as the Duke of Wei and Sun Quan eventually became emperor after he received the gifts. Sima Zhao received the same honor while under Wei. Cao Pi and Sima Yan were not granted these gifts, but they became emperors when they ascended to power. Dong Zhuo never had the chance to receive the gifts; given his tyranny over the emperor, however, the prospect was not entirely without question and perhaps a real fear from those who witnessed his "ascension". As a side note, Xun Yu fled from Dong Zhuo's influence and was the one who later advised Cao Cao to accept the gifts.
- Dean Harrington - Dynasty Warriors 2 (English)
- Richard Epcar - Dynasty Warriors 4~8, Warriors Orochi series; first and second games only (English-uncredited)
- Pascal Renwick - Dynasty Warriors 4 (French-uncredited)
- Li Yingli - Dynasty Warriors 3 (Chinese)
- No Min - Dynasty Warriors 2, 4~5 (Korean)
- Jang Hobi - Dynasty Warriors 3 (Korean)
- An Jang Hyeok - Dynasty Warriors: Unleashed (Korean)
- Yukitoshi Hori - Dynasty Warriors and Warriors Orochi series (Japanese)
- Daisuke Gōri - Romance of the Three Kingdoms drama CD series
- Teruyuki Tanzawa - Sangokushi Legion
- See also: Dong Zhuo/Quotes
- "Dong Zhuo... You don't deserve any of this, you greedy pig!"
- "Why you...You would dare turn your blade against me?! You insolent dog! I'll cut you down right where you stand!"
- ~~Lu Bu betrays Dong Zhuo; Dynasty Warriors 5
- "My lord, we managed to obtain the rare fruit you desired. I shall bring it to you later."
- "Good, good. I can almost taste it now."
- "I am sure it will be juicy and succulent. I know you will enjoy it."
- ~~Diao Chan and Dong Zhuo; Dynasty Warriors 7
- "You never change. You should try to be more refined, like me."
- "All I care about are my dreams of paradise. When it comes to partying, there's no place for refinement!"
- "You are such a brute! It was foolish of me to try and teach you some manners."
- "Hmph! It's no use explaining the true joys of life to you, either."
- ~~Yuan Shao and Dong Zhuo; Dynasty Warriors 8
- "When you were in Liang Province, I hear you would fight using a bow from horseback? That sounds fabricated."
- "Does it now! I'l have you know, when I was on a horse, bow in hand, brigands would tremble in their boots!"
- "Your rode a horse with that belly? I feel sorry for the horse. Could it even run with you on its back?"
- "I was thinner back then! This belly is a product of all my glorious excess! Just you watch! I'll show you my skills on horseback soon enough! If the horse can't run, I'll execute it!"
- "Now I really feel sorry for the horse. Try to lose a little weight first, at least."
- ~~Xiahou Yuan and Dong Zhuo; Dynasty Warriors: Godseekers
- "If you like me so much, we don't have to fight. Come back with me and I'll take good care of you..."
- "Oh, did I really say that? That was just habit, I'm afraid. You're quite fat and ugly, frankly."
- ~~Dong Zhuo and Okuni; Warriors Orochi
- "I will smash your perverted delusions together with your piggish face!"
- "Hmm... I like that look. Come serve under me and you can be angry as much as you like."
- ~~Ginchiyo and Dong Zhuo; Warriors Orochi 2
- "Destroy everything."
- "No, you fool! If you destroy everything, there won't be anything left! Including anything worth stealing! Violence is only a means to an end! It is not to be committed for its own sake!"
- ~~Orochi X and Dong Zhuo; Warriors Orochi 3
- See also: Dong Zhuo/Movesets
|Keys:||Normal Attack •||Charge Attack •||Musou •||Jump/Mount|
Dynasty Warriors 7Edit
Dong Zhuo is affiliated with the flail in this appearance. When he is equipped with it, he can perform a unique attack exclusive to him. Upon performing his Musou techniques, he will automatically use the weapon in his attacks.
- EX Attack: , : Trips his opponent, lands on their back as they fall, grabs their chin from behind and snaps their neck with a camel clutch.
- Musou - Mad Bomber (大爆殺): : Throws multiple bombs in front of him. Classified as a Multi-strike Musou in Next and used in Warriors Orochi 3.
- Aerial Musou - Black Hole (壊滅暗黒球): , : Throws a large ball of evil spirits down towards his opponents.
Dynasty Warriors NextEdit
For this title, Dong Zhuo uses bombs as his weapon. These weapons were previously only available as downloadable content in Dynasty Warriors 7.
- Speed Musou - Salvo: Tap both sides of screen: Hurls a barrage of bombs in front of Dong Zhuo's line of sight, then unleashes one last bomb to cause a massive explosion from a distance. Aiming from different altitudes has an impact on the attack's arc of trajectory.
- Warriors Orochi 3
- , : Tosses two bombs on the ground, causing them to explode upon landing.
- R1: Throws two bombs that orbit around him. The bombs explode when they come in contact with an enemy.
- , R1 (Ultimate only): Throws two time bombs on the ground. Can set up several more bombs at once.
- Dynasty Warriors 7 Empires
- EX Attack: , : Charges energy in his hand, runs forward and grabs an opponent. After slamming his opponent to the ground, the energy disperses in front of him and causes some explosions.
Dynasty Warriors 8Edit
Dong Zhuo keeps the same moveset from the previous title with the following additions.
- EX Attack 2 (Xtreme Legends only): , , , : Dazes opponents by emitting a shockwave via stomp, then tosses a bomb to blow them apart.
- Alternate Musou - Sheer Destruction (尾破壊殺): R1 + : Grabs an opponent and subdues them from the rear.
- Awakening Musou: Continuously throws bombs at a short distance while moving. At the end of the attack, he conjures a massive fireball and sends it below the ground. The extension has him toss more wildly, adding even more explosives near the end of the combo.
- See also: Dong Zhuo/Weapons
Dynasty Warriors 8Edit
Dong Zhuo still uses the bomb as his default weapon in this title.
Dong Zhuo (d. May 22, 192) was a powerful warlord during the late Eastern Han Dynasty. He seized control of Luoyang in 189 after the capital fell into chaos following the death of Emperor Ling and a bloody clash between the powerful eunuch faction and the court officials. Dong Zhuo subsequently deposed the rightful heir to the throne and instated the puppet Emperor Xian.
However, Dong Zhuo's tyrannical and cruel ways angered many, and warlords around the country formed a coalition against him, forcing him to move the capital west to Chang'an. Dong Zhuo was eventually assassinated by his adoptive son Lü Bu as part of a plot by Interior Minister, Wang Yun.
Romance of the Three KingdomsEdit
Dong Zhuo was the governor of Hedong and was widely known to be arrogant. He first appeared in the novel near the end of chapter one, where he replaces Lu Zhi as one of the Imperial Corps commanders during the Yellow Turban Rebellion. Dong Zhuo's army had been beaten and was the victim of an ongoing pursuit when volunteers Liu Bei, Guan Yu, and Zhang Fei intercepted the Turbans and warded them away. Dong Zhuo was seen back to camp by the volunteers, but upon discovering they had no position or merit within the Han, rudely denied to recognize their service. Behind his back, soon after the incident, Zhang Fei prepared to assassinate him yet was stopped by Liu Bei.
Because of his heavy losses against the Yellow Turbans, Dong Zhuo was replaced by Huangfu Song. To escape court punishment for his failures, Dong Zhuo bribed the Ten Eunuchs into protecting him. Through connections, he quickly rose up through the ranks in the empire, eventually leading an army of two hundred thousand men. Despite his offices, however, Dong Zhuo was not loyal to the emperor.
When He Jin called for generals to come to the capital, Luoyang, Dong Zhuo left his son-in-law Niu Fu to defend Dong Zhuo's territory, and brought with him to Luoyang some troops and four commanders ― Fan Chou, Li Jue, Guo Si, and Zhang Ji.
Though much of the imperial court protested and resigned from their positions once they heard of Dong Zhuo's coming, He Jin had Dong Zhuo greeted wholly. Dong Zhuo's coming frightened the Ten Eunuchs who skillfully had He Jin killed, sending the court into confusion, with the teenage Emperor Shao and his younger half-brother Prince Liu Xie being rescued by Min Gong. When coming back to the capital, Min Gong's escort troop encountered Dong Zhuo, who prostrated himself before the emperor.
Emperor Shao, panicked, was not able to speak at Dong Zhuo, so instead, Liu Xie spoke for him with the utmost dignity. Dong Zhuo, secretly impressed, thought of deposing Emperor Shao and throning the prince.
Corruption in the CapitalEdit
- "Power-hungry eunuchs, the curse of the dynasty, have thrown the masses of the people into the depths of misery. Now you, without a jot of merit, speak madly of meddling in the succession. Do you want to overthrow the dynasty yourself?"
- ―Ding Yuan, during a meeting.
Dong Zhuo and his troops stayed stationed outside Luoyang, yet the cavalry rioted throughout the city, scaring its inhabitants. Dong Zhuo also went to and fro from imperial buildings, lacking respect. Some ministers, including Yuan Shao and Wang Yun noticed the disloyalty being shown, but Yuan Shao discouraged any action: "With the court lately stabilized, this is no time for rashness." Dong Zhuo voiced his wish for a new emperor to Li Ru, his son-in-law and close adviser, and was delighted with Li Ru's answer of taking action in the current circumstances.
The next day, Dong Zhuo called for a banquet at the Garden of Benign Wisdom, and intimidated all of the nobles into coming. When he came to the garden, Dong Zhuo dismounted and entered without removing his sword, which itself was a capital offense. After some wine, he ordered the festivities to stop, and said, "The [emperor] is sovereign lord of all, but without awe-inspiring dignity he cannot do honor to the ancestral temple of the sacred shrines. The present emperor is timid and weak. For intellect and learning he cannot match the prince of Chenliu, who deserves to inherit the throne. Hence I shall depose the emperor and instate the prince. What do the great ministers have to say?"
A single man rose through the shocked silence, calling Dong Zhuo's wishes wrong and questioning his power. He was Ding Yuan, the imperial inspector of Bingzhou. "Those who obey me live; those who do not, die." Dong Zhuo said. He drew his sword at Ding Yuan, but Li Ru saw the menacing and angry Lü Bu, Ding Yuan's adoptive son. Li Ru smoothly calmed Dong Zhuo and Ding Yuan down, with the latter leaving. Lu Zhi was the next who rose in opposition to Dong Zhuo's claims, but the quarrel was settled after Dong Zhuo again bared his sword, and the banquet was adjourned.
The next day, Ding Yuan and his troops were calling for a battle outside of Luoyang. Dong Zhuo led his own forces out, and the two engaged in battle. Ding Yuan pointed out at Dong Zhuo and cried, "Power-hungry eunuchs, the curse of the dynasty, have thrown the masses of the people into the depths of misery. Now you, without a jot of merit, speak madly of meddling in the succession. Do you want to overthrow the dynasty yourself?" Lü Bu rode out and menaced Dong Zhuo before an answer could be made, and so Dong Zhuo's forces fled. He was amazed at Lü Bu's skill, and had a man send for Lü Bu, giving him the prized steed Red Hare along with one thousand taels of gold, a jade belt, and some several dozen pearls. Later, as part of the plan, Lü Bu slayed Ding Yuan and came into Dong Zhuo's service and family as his adoptive son. Dong Zhuo later promoted himself several times, and gave Lü Bu titles as well.
Once again, Dong Zhuo held a banquet, sword-in-hand, to have talks about deposing the emperor. He openly declared Prince Liu Xie would take over and threatened those who would defy him with death. Yuan Shao was the only one who spoke his mind, asking why Emperor Shao needed to step down. Dong Zhuo forcefully stated, "This matter of state is mine to decide. Who dares defy me? Do you think this sword not sharp enough?" Yuan Shao left, and the assembly of officials, shaken, declared "We shall obey." Dong Zhuo later appointed Yuan Shao as governor of Bohai in order to keep the vain Yuan Shao in check and favor.
Later, in 190 AD, Dong Zhuo had Emperor Shao and his mother, Empress He, escorted to a separate section of the imperial palace, removing both's imperial regalia, and forcing Emperor Shao to bow on his knees and make an oath to obey. The two wept, as did the officials watching. However, one of them leapt at Dong Zhuo crying, "Traitor Dong Zhuo! Dare you abuse Heaven itself? Then let my blood bear witness!", was stopped, and later beheaded. Dong Zhuo had the nine-year old Liu Xie sit on the throne, and he became Emperor Xian. Dong Zhuo became prime minister, the rank closest to the ruler.
The former Emperor Shao and Empress He were only allotted meager meals and clothing. He grieved for it, and Dong Zhuo could then execute him for his missing of the throne. He had the former emperor and Empress He killed and buried outside of the city.
With a newfound freedom, Dong Zhuo began indulging, sleeping with the imperial concubines and sleeping in the emperor's bed. The next month from the former emperor's deposing, Dong Zhuo had his troops come to a small village outside of Luoyang. The inhabitants were worshiping their local god in honor of the spring. Dong Zhuo ordered all of the men beheaded with their heads, numbering more than one thousand tied to some carts, and all of the goods and women seized and distributed amongst the troops. He came back into the capital, claiming he has quelled some bandits.
- "You are not my sovereign. I am not your subject. What 'treason' are you talking about? Your crimes tower to Heaven, and the whole world longs to see you dead. My one regret is that I cannot have you pulled apart by horses ― like any traitor ― to satisfy the realm."
- ―Wu Fu
At one point in time, the commandant of the Exemplary Cavalry, Wu Fu, attempted to assassinate Dong Zhuo. Dong Zhuo was able to seize Wu Fu, and questioned why he would commit treason. Before his execution, Wu Fu shouted, "You are not my sovereign. I am not your subject. What 'treason' are you talking about? Your crimes tower to Heaven, and the whole world longs to see you dead. My one regret is that I cannot have you pulled apart by horses ― like any traitor ― to satisfy the realm."
Cao Cao, whom was trusted by Dong Zhuo, also tried an attempt at assassination. Behind his back, Cao Cao drew a special dagger out, but Dong Zhuo quickly saw into a metal reflector showing the weapon and turned around, questioning what Cao Cao was doing. Now that Lü Bu was in the room, Cao Cao shook to his knees and presented the knife in a present-like fashion. Dong Zhuo accepted the gift, but later put a bounty on the fleeing Cao Cao after discovering the dagger's true purpose.
The Alliance against Dong ZhuoEdit
Later, Cao Cao raised an alliance of eighteen lords to rise against Dong Zhuo. The forces later clashed at Si River, where Dong Zhuo sent an army led by Hua Xiong to defend the gate there. Hua Xiong was later killed in battle and his subordinates reported this to Dong Zhuo.
He had Yuan Wei, the Imperial Guardian and Yuan Shao's uncle, put to death, along with every other person in his household, regardless of age, executed as well. Dong Zhuo personally led one hundred and fifty thousand out to Hulao Pass along with Lü Bu.
After failing to form an alliance with Sun Jian, whom he admired, Dong Zhuo fell back and began transferring the capital to Chang'an, a location which could be more easily defended. Five ministers objected, and three of which were stripped of both merit and rank, and the other two executed. He had many of the rich and their families in Luoyang executed on the pretense that they were working with the Allied forces, and plundered their wealth. The people in Luoyang were also charged out into Chang'an, and many of which who died were looted. Lü Bu was ordered to plunder previous emperors' tombs of their wealth and jewelry. The alliance against Dong Zhuo soon crumbled.
Wedging Bonds and BetrayalEdit
Dong Zhuo focused on fortifying Chang'an, and rectified every member of his house, young and old, into having titles. His family lived amongst wealth, and he had many feasts.
During a banquet, with all nobles present, several hundred enemy troops were brought in after voluntarily surrendering. Dong Zhuo had all of them mutilated by the guards, some with limbs lopped off, tongues cut, eyes gouged out, or even boiled in vats. Though the officials could not hold their chopsticks at the horrors, Dong Zhuo kept chatting and drinking, laughing, and unperturbed.
On another day, Dong Zhuo had Lü Bu bring out the minister of public works, Zhang Wen beheaded with the head on a red platter, accusing him of conspiracy with Yuan Shu.
Wang Yun once invited Dong Zhuo to a dinner, where he presented Diaochan, his foster daughter, into dancing and serving Dong Zhuo. He was mystified by the sixteen-year old Diaochan, marveling at her voice and looks. Wang Yun had Diaochan become a concubine of Dong Zhuo, and soon became his favorite.
Over time, tension grew between Dong Zhuo and Lü Bu, who had also been promised Diaochan in marriage, to which was unbeknownst to Dong Zhuo. On one occasion, Dong Zhuo even chased his adoptive son around the Phoenix Pavilion wielding a halberd after seeing him holding Diaochan. Diaochan falsely said Lü Bu was courting her unjustly.
Li Su was sent to Dong Zhuo to send an untrue message that the emperor wanted to abdicate all power to him. Dong Zhuo marveled at the thought, and went to take leave of his ninety-year old mother. His mother complained of suffering from uneasiness and pains in her heart, describing it as an ill omen. Dong Zhuo dismissed them respectfully as signs that she would become the mother empress.
On his way for Chang'an, a wheel on Dong Zhuo's carriage broke, and he switched to riding a horse. Soon, the horse snorted wildly and its reins broke. The next day, a fierce storm broke out. Li Su dismissed these events as more signs of Dong Zhuo's soon-to-be greatness.
Upon entering the palace court, Dong Zhuo saw a Taoist priest wearing a white headdress and dark gown, and holding a long staff, each with the character "mouth" written on both sides. Dong Zhuo recognized that the character for Lü also had two overlaying squares, but Li Su chased the priest away. As he went into the main court, he saw a group of sword-armed men with Wang Yun at its center. Dong Zhuo asked what was the meaning of the swords, to which Wang Yun shouted that the traitor was here, and the swords were launched at Dong Zhuo. However, his armor protected him from everything but a wounded arm and a falling off the carriage, so he shouted, "Where is my son?"
Lü Bu appeared from behind the carriage and responded, "Here is the edict to punish the traitor!" Dong Zhuo's neck was lanced by his son. Dong Zhuo's clan were later slaughtered by Lü Bu.
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