3 Interesting Stories About Sun Tzu

Sun Tzu is a Chinese general and philosopher from 544 BC who is often credited for writing The Art of War, arguably the most influential work on military strategy. Let’s check out some interesting stories about him below.

Sun Tzu Never Lost a Battle

According to a biography written by historian Sima Qian, around 100 BC, Sun Tzu served as a general for 40 years. During that time, he never lost a battle, war, or campaign, helping the Kingdom of Wu to become the most powerful force in the region.

Sun Tzu Turned 180 Concubines Into Soldiers

As the story goes, King Helü of Wu, under whom Sun Tzu served, was curious whether Sun Tzu’s methods were as efficient as he claimed. He decided to give Sun Tzu a test in which the famed general needed to turn 180 concubines into soldiers. Sun Tzu appointed two concubines as leaders and proceeded with the training. After his instructions were met with laughter, he executed the two leaders, after which he gained the concubine’s attention and successfully completed the task.

There Are Doubts About Whether Sun Tzu Existed

The lack of historical data mentioning Sun Tzu aside from Sima Qian’s biography has caused a number of historians to doubt whether he even existed. Some believe that he could have been a fictional character or a name used for a number of figures. According to some theories, The Art of War is actually a compilation of text from different authors or a work of another Chinese general, Sun Bin.

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