|Title of host publication||The Encyclopedia of Ancient History: Asia and Africa|
|Editors||D. T. POTTS, Ethan HARKNESS, Jason NEELIS, Roderick MCINTOSH|
|Publisher||John Wiley and Sons Inc.|
|Publication status||Published - 28 Oct 2021|
Lü Buwei was one of the most important politicians of the Qin kingdom in the decades before its successful conquest and integration of the entire realm of ancient China in the year 221 bce. Rare among politicians of the time, he was not a member of the nobility but only a wealthy merchant. Using his great fortune, he managed to insert himself into the political world of the Qin and eventually reached the apex of his career as the state chancellor under King Zheng, the future First Emperor of the Qin Empire. He orchestrated military campaigns against rival states that greatly expanded the territory of the Qin. He also commissioned the compilation of The Annals of Lü Buwei (Lüshi chunqiu), a monumental compendium of philosophical writings of the third century bce. He eventually fell out of favor with King Zheng and committed suicide in 235 bce.