Cao Ang

Cao Ang

Three Kingdoms Biography
Three Kingdoms Biography Less

Cao Ang

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Cao Ang (died 197) was the eldest son of the late Han Dynasty warlord Cao Cao. He was killed during the Battle of Wancheng after giving up his horse to his father during their escape.


Cao Ang was born to Cao Cao and Lady Liu. Little was documented about his early life except that he was recommended as xiaolian¹ at nineteen.

In 197, Cao Ang followed his father on a campaign to take the province of Jingzhou (荆州, present day Hubei and Hunan). Zhang Xiu, a minor warlord who occupied Wancheng (宛城, present day Nanyang, Henan), surrendered to Cao Cao. Cao Cao then took the wife of Zhang Xiu's late uncle as a concubine, which made Zhang Xiu very displeased. When Cao Cao learnt of this, he secretly plotted to murder Zhang Xiu. However, the plan leaked out and Zhang Xiu took the initiative to attack Cao Cao's camp.

Caught by surprise, Cao Cao's troops were overwhelmed by the enemy. During the frantic retreat, Cao Cao's horse was badly wounded by stray arrows and could not carry him further. Cao Ang then offered his horse to Cao Cao, who managed to escape.

However, Cao Ang and his cousin Cao Anmin (曹安民) were killed by the enemy. In Romance of the Three Kingdoms he is shot to death by archers.

Cao Ang was not survived by any sons. Therefore Cao Pi, after he ascended the throne, decreed his brother Cao Jun's (曹均) son Cao Wan (曹琬) to succeed Cao Ang.

¹ <small> During the Han Dynasty, entry to official posts was mostly based on recommendations. Each...
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