water. The wells they bored ran dry, and the men were reduced to squeezing lumps of mud and sucking out the moisture. Their ranks thinned rapidly, until at last Fu Yen-ch‘ing exclaimed: “We are desperate men. Far better to die for our country than to go with fettered hands into captivity!” A strong gale happened to be blowing from the north-east and darkening the air with dense clouds of sandy dust. Tu Chung-wei was for waiting. until this had abated before deciding on a final attack; but luckily another officer, 李守貞 Li Shou-chêng by name, was quicker to see an opportunity, and said: “They are many and we are few, but in the midst of this sandstorm our numbers will not be discernible; victory will go to the strenuous fighter, and the wind will be our best ally.” Accordingly, Fu Yen-ch‘ing made a sudden and wholly unexpected onslaught with his cavalry, routed the barbarians and succeeded in breaking through to safety. [Certain details in the above account have been added from the 歴代紀事年表, ch. 78.]
37. Such is the art of warfare.
Chêng Yu-hsien in his 遺說 inserts 妙 after 法. I take it that these words conclude the extract from the 軍政 which began at § 23.