Page:A Chinese Biographical Dictionary.djvu/185

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166 A Chinese Biographical Dictionary


affair created much scandal; and Chou Ya-fa being summoned to Court, remained five days without eating, and so starved himself to death.

427 Chou Yen-ju ]^^^ (T. ^^). A.D. 1593-1643. A native of ^ J^ I-hsing in Eansuh, who gradaated as first chin iJiih when little over twenty, and attracted notice by his handsome face and spirited bearing. The last Emperor of the Ming dynasty made him a Grand Secretary in 1630, and in spite of Censor denunciations of him as an evil liver, the sovereign reposed great confidence in him. Chou allied himself with W6n T'i-jen, who repaid his help by undermining his position with th^ Emperor, until in 1633 Chou was driven from office on a charge of treasonable correspondence with the rebels. Eight years later he was recalled as Prime Minister, partly through the ^ ij^ Tung Lin faction; and having learnt wisdom in adversity, he laboured to neutralise the evil government of W6n T*i-j§D. He was, however, quite unable to cope with the rebels and with the Manchus, and his partisans were greedy and corrupt. In 1643, when the Manchus raided Shantung, he obtained command at ^ T'ung-chon, where he spent his time in carousing, while he reported imaginary victories. The Emperor was ultimately informed of the truth; but Chou was only dismissed to his home. His enemies presently charged him with speaking ill of his Majesty; whereupon be was brought up for trial to Peking, and was forced to commit suicide.

428 Chou Yü (T. ^J^). A.D. 174-218. A native of ^ Shu in Anhui, whose father and grandfather had both occupied high official posts. He was a handsome lad; and when Sun Chien, who had raised a volunteer force to oppose Tung Cho, was quartered at Shu, he became very friendly with the general'! wd^v San Ti^t, Mid ultisiately attached himself to the