Guan Hai 管亥 was a bandit who was active in the Shandong 山東 area. He fought in name of the Yellow Turban rebels, but he is not mentioned as active during the 184 Yellow Turban Rebellion. Chronologically he first appears in 193.
Guan Hai was a Yellow Turban leader who was active in the Shandong area. In 193 he besieged Kong Rong 孔融, who was sent out to Duchang 都昌 to quell some remnant Yellow Turban forces. In response, Guan Hai led his army to surround Duchang and laid siege to it. In response, Kong Rong sent Taishi Ci 太史慈 to seek help from Liu Bei 劉備, who agreed to lend Taishi Ci three thousand soldiers to relief the siege. When the reinforcements arrived, Guan Hai's men scattered.
- There are no records of activity Guan Hai in 184. In fact, the Yellow Turban Rebellion is covered primarily in the biography of Huangfu Song and Zhu Jun in History of the Later Han, chapter 71, but his name is not mentioned there, nor in the biographies of other men active in 184 such as He Jin, Lu Zhi, or Emperor Ling. It therefore seems assumable that Guan Hai was not active in 184.
- The biography of Kong Rong in History of the Later Han and the biography of Taishi Ci in Records of the Three Kingdoms call Guan Hai a Yellow Turban. Because he is not mentioned in any text covering 184 it's more likely he was a bandit who claimed affiliation with the Yellow Turbans, rather than him being a survivor of the 184 rebellion.
Fact vs. Fiction
- Historically, Guan Hai wasn't slain by Guan Yu. He and his men just scattered when reinforcements came.
- "時，黃巾複來侵暴，融乃出屯都昌，為賊管亥所圍。" Fan Ye. History of the Later Han, 70.
- "時融以黃巾寇暴，出屯都昌，為賊管亥所圍。" Chen Shou. "Book of Wu 4," Records of the Three Kingdoms.
- Chen Shou 陳壽 (233–297). Sanguo zhi 三國志 “Records of the Three Kingdoms”, with official commentary compiled by Pei Songzhi 裴松之 (372-451).
- de Crespigny, Rafe. A Biographical Dictionary of Later Han to the Three Kingdoms (23 - 220 AD). Leiden: BRILL, 2007.
- Fan Ye 范曄 (398–445). Hou Han shu 後漢書 “History of the Later Han”.