Uncover the story of Duke Xi of Lu's intense pursuit of the elusive Jie Zhitui, marked by a dramatic fire on Mianshan and the arrival of white crows.
In the 14th year of Duke Xi of Lu’s reign, Duke Wen of Jin burned Mian Mountain in search of Jie Zhitui who was in hiding. At that time, flocks of white crows surrounded the thick smoke, cawing loudly, and some white crows even gathered around Jie Zhitui, preventing the fire from reaching him. The people of Jin praised the behavior of the white crows, and they built a high platform called the “Thinking of Smoke Platform.” They also planted many Ren Shou trees around the platform. These trees resemble cypress trees but have long and flexible branches, and their flowers are edible. That’s why “The Annals of Lü Buwei” says, “The best kind of tree is one that bears fruit for longevity.” It refers to the Ren Shou tree. Some say that within hundreds of miles around the forest burned by Duke Wen of Jin that year, residents were prohibited from setting nets to catch birds, and the white crows that protected Jie Zhitui were called “Ren Wu,” which means “compassionate crows.” In the folk, white-breasted crows are also called “Ci Wu,” which are of the same kind as white crows.