Chinese Historic Tales: Marriage to a Blind Bride

Shu Ping

PureInsight | September 19, 2005

[] This is the story of Liu Tingshi of the State of Qi in ancient China.

When Liu Tingshi was young, his parents arranged the engagement between him and their neighbor's daughter. After Liu grew up, he successfully passed the Civil Service Examination (Translator's note: passing the Civil Service Examination in ancient China would enable one to become a government official, and so it was highly regarded and considered a high achievement). His fiancée, however, had contracted a severe eye disease and turned blind. Liu's neighbor was rather poor and because their daughter had turned blind, they felt she was unworthy of marrying Liu. So they didn't dare to bring up the subject of the earlier engagement.

Others also advised Liu to marry another girl, but Liu replied with a smile: "I'm already engaged to her. Although she has unfortunately turned blind, it isn't right for me to forsake her." Liu's family later held a wedding for Liu and the blind girl.

Liu and his wife had a long-lasting happy marriage. They had three sons. All three children did very well in the Civil Service Examination and all became high ranking officials.

People sometimes judge others by their appearances, and they sometimes break their promises in order to protect their own selfish interests. This story teaches us a lesson how what is the right thing to do regarding these two issues.

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