Mandate of Heaven

(ca. 475–221 BCE)

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I. In the third month, at the commencement of the government of the duke of Chow in the new city of Luo, he announced the royal will to the officers of the Shang dynasty, saying, “The king speaks to this effect:—‘Ye numerous officers who remain from the dynasty of Yin, great ruin came down on Yin from the want of pity in compassionate Heaven, and we, the princes of Chow, received its favouring decree. We accordingly felt charged with its bright terrors; carried out the punishments which kings inflict; rightly disposed of the appointment of Yin; and finished the work of God....