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Tu Fu

Born: 7120 AD
Died: 7700 AD
Nationality: Chinese
Categories: Poets, Writers

712 – Tu Fu or Du Fu, born in China. He was a prominent Chinese poet of the Tang Dynasty. Along with Li Bai (Li Po), he is frequently called the greatest of the Chinese poets.

730 – He travelled in the Jiangsu/Zhejiang area; his earliest surviving poem, describing a poetry contest, is thought to date from the end of this period.

744 – He met Li Bai (Li Po) for the first time, and the two poets formed a somewhat one-sided friendship: He was by some years the younger, while Li Bai was already a poetic star.

746 – Moved to the capital in an attempt to resurrect his official career. He participated in a second exam the following year, but all the candidates were failed by the prime minister (apparently in order to prevent the emergence of possible rivals).

754 – He began to have lung problems (probably asthma), the first of a series of ailments which dogged him for the rest of his life.

755 – His life, like the whole country, was devastated by the An Lushan Rebellion, and the last 15 years of his life were a time of almost constant unrest.

     – He finally received an appointment as Registrar of the Right Commandant’s office of the Crown Prince’s Palace.

756 – Emperor Xuanzong was forced to flee the capital and abdicate. He, who had been away from the city, took his family to a place of safety and attempted to join up with the court of the new emperor (Suzong), but he was captured by the rebels and taken to Chang’an.

757 – He escaped from Chang’an the following year, and was appointed Reminder when he rejoined the court in May.

760 – Arrived in Chengdu (Sichuan province), where he based himself for most of the next five years.

762 – He left the city to escape a rebellion.

764 – he returned in the summer and was appointed military advisor to Yen, who was involved in campaigns against the Tibetans.

766 – In autumn Bo Maolin became governor of the region: he supported him financially and employed him as his unofficial secretary.

768 – In March, he began his journey again and got as far as Hunan province.

770 – He died in Tanzhou (now Changsha) in November or December, in his 59th year.