An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History, Literature and Art

Mao Gong 毛公, the Dukes of Mao

Oct 20, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald

Don't confuse this ancient dynastic house and the Former Han period 漢 (206 BCE-220 CE) Confucian scholars Mao Heng 毛亨 and Mao Chang 毛萇 that are called Da Mao Gong 大毛公 and Xiao Mao Gong 小毛公.

The dukes of Mao 毛公, family name Ji 姬, served as ministers (qing 卿) to the kings of the early Western Zhou period 西周 (11th cent.-770 BCE). Mao was actually the name of the territory, which was located in modern Yiyang 宜陽, Henan.

The most famous dukes of Mao, whose personal names or posthumous titles are only fragmentarily known, are:

1) the oldest Duke of Mao, who functioned as chief counsellor to King Cheng 周成王, together with the Duke of Shao 召公奭, when the king fell ill in 1027;

2) Duke Yin of Mao 毛公{厂/音} who is mentioned in the inscripition of the famous bronze tripod Mao gong ding 毛公鼎, and who lived during the reign of King Xuan 周宣王 (r. 827-782 BC). He was also called Situ Mao Shu 司土毛叔 "Land tax supervisor, Uncle Mao", or simply Mao Shu 毛叔 "Uncle Mao".

Another member of the house of Mao had the personal name Zheng and was called Mao Shu Zheng 毛叔鄭. One of his ancestors was Mao Gong Lü 毛公旅 (also written {旅/車}).

Wu Zhenfeng 吳鎮烽, ed. (2006). Gudian wenxue yanjiu ziliao huibian 古典文學研究資料彙編, Jinwen renming huibian 金文人名彙編 (Beijing: Zhonghua shuju), 54.
Xiong Tieji 熊鐵基, Yang Youli 楊有禮, ed. (1994). Zhongguo diwang zaixiang cidian 中國帝王宰相辭典 (Wuhan: Hubei jiaoyu chubanshe), 371.