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Cao and retreated
However, Cao Cao received word that Lü Bu had seized Yan Province in his absence, and accordingly he retreated, putting a halt to hostilities with Tao Qian for the time being.
Chunyu Qiong's initial defences were overrun, and he retreated to hold his forts, which Cao Cao attacked and set on fire.
The majority of Cao Cao's troops were burnt to death or drowned in the river while the survivors who successfully retreated to the riverbank were ambushed and killed by skirmishers.
He retreated back to the north and left behind Cao Ren and Xu Huang to guard Jiangling and Yue Jin to defend Xiangyang.
Cao Cao's force feared an ambush in the camp and hastily retreated.
Cao Cao retreated to Ye, while Liu Bei proceeded to conquer territories in Jiangnan, covering most of southern Jing Province.
With this, Sun Quan's army defended their positions against Cao Cao's approaching forces, who retreated after several attempts to overcome Sun Quan's army.
When Cao Cao retreated from Xiaoyao Ford, he stationed Zhu Guang ( 朱光 ) in Lujiang, and commanded him to develop the lands for agricultural use.
After Cao Cao retreated, Zhou Tai was appointed Controller of Ruxu and General who Pacifies the Caitiffs.
Seeing that the advantages he had hoped to gain were lost, Cao Ren retreated.
When Cao retreated north after his defeat at Red Cliffs, Xu was ordered to stay behind with Cao Ren in Jiangling to resist Sun Quan's counteroffensive.
As a result, a yearlong vigorous fighting followed and the casualty on Cao Cao side became enormous, so Xu and Cao Ren finally abandoned Jiangling and retreated north.
As Zhang Fei retreated with Liu Bei, Cao Cao ordered his men to build pontoon bridges and launch an assault, but a timely arrival of Guan Yu and his forces prevented Cao Cao from fully attaining victory.

Cao and north
After Cao Cao reunified the north in 208, his son proclaimed the Wei dynasty in 220.
He collaborated with Liu Bei on this effort, but Cao Cao soon found out about the plot and had Dong Cheng and his conspirators executed, with only Liu Bei surviving and fleeing to join Yuan Shao in the north.
After settling the nearby provinces, including a rebellion led by former Yellow Turbans, and internal affairs with the court, Cao Cao turned his attention north to Yuan Shao, who himself had eliminated his northern rival Gongsun Zan that same year.
In 202, Cao Cao took advantage of Yuan Shao's death and the resulting division among his sons to advance north of the Yellow River.
After Cao's defeat at the naval Battle of Red Cliffs in 208 CE, China was divided into three spheres of influence, with Cao Cao dominating the north, Sun Quan ( 182 – 252 CE ) dominating the south, and Liu Bei ( 161 – 223 CE ) dominating the west.
* General Cao Cao controls the Huang He basin and north of the country.
In 219, Guan Yu advanced north, attacking Fancheng, scoring a major victory over Cao Ren.
In 224 and 225, Cao Pi again made attacks on Wu, but each time the Wu forces were able to repel Wei's with fair ease — so easily that Cao Pi made the comment, " Heaven created the Yangtze to divide the north and south.
At the end of the Han Dynasty, most of Hebei came under the control of warlords Gongsun Zan in the north and Yuan Shao further south ; Yuan Shao emerged victorious of the two, but he was soon defeated by rival Cao Cao ( based further south, in modern-day Henan ) in the Battle of Guandu in 200.
In 216, the warlord-statesman Cao Cao detained Hucuquan in the city of Ye, and divided his followers in Shanxi into five divisions: left, right, south, north, and centre.
After his death, Liu Biao's realm was surrendered by his successors to Cao Cao, a powerful warlord who had conquered nearly all of north China ; but in the Battle of Red Cliffs, warlords Liu Bei and Sun Quan drove Cao Cao out of Jingzhou.
The plan was that Groupement Bayard would fight its way north from That Khe and retake Dong Khé, holding it long enough to link up with the Cao Bang group.
Cao Cao declares himself chancellor and leads his troops to attack southern China after uniting the north.

Cao and left
Meanwhile Colonel Charton's group, led by the 3rd Battalion of 3rd REI, left Cao Bang on 1 October ; contrary to orders he took with him his heavy equipment.
Royal Uncle Cao was so overwhelmed by sadness and shame on his brother that he resigned his office and left home.
He did not take any of Cao Cao's gifts with him and left behind a farewell letter.
Frustrated, Guan Yu eventually wrote a farewell letter to Cao Cao and left.
When Cao Cao was leading a campaign against Tao Qian, the governor of Xu Province ( 徐州 ; covering present-day northern Jiangsu ) whom Cao accused of killing his father, Xiahou Dun was left with the responsibility of defending Yan Province.
" Cao laughed and left.
Cao Cao, in an unexpected move, left his northern front exposed to Yuan Shao and turned east to retake Xu Province.
Zhang Fei, who was left behind by Liu to guard Xiapi ( capital of Xu Province ), killed Cao Bao ( chancellor of Xiapi when Tao Qian was still in charge of Xu Province ) after an intense quarrel.
Yuan Shao's attempt to reinforce Liu was repulsed by Yu Jin, whom Cao Cao had left in command of his troops at Yan Ford.
In one occasion, the enemy commander, Zhou Yu, left the defense of his main camp to his subordinate, Ling Tong, and led most of the troops to rescue another subject, Gan Ning, who was surrounded by Cao Ren's cavalry in a distant castle.
Even Ling Tong was only left with a wee fraction of the army to guard the camp, the numerically superior Xu Huang and Cao Ren were defeated by the former and the enemy camps remained intact.
He left Cao Cao after learning of Liu Bei's whereabouts and rushed to reunite with Liu.
When Guan Yu left Jing Province to attack Cao Cao's forces in the north, Lu Xun pretended to take over Lü Meng's command of the military on Jing Province's eastern front.

Cao and Ren
* Cao Ren, cousin of the warlord Cao Cao ( d. 223 )
* Cao Chun, younger brother of Cao Ren ( d. 210 )
* Cao Ren, general of Wei ( b. 168 )
Guan Yu, who is in charge of Jing Province, leads his troops to attack Cao Ren in the Battle of Fancheng.
After almost a year of fighting, Cao Cao could no longer afford continuous loss of materiel and labor in the siege, and ordered Cao Ren to withdraw from Jiangling fortress.
In 219, Guan Yu attacked the nearby enemy city of Fancheng ( present-day Fancheng District, Xiangyang, Hubei ), which was guarded by Cao Ren, and besieged it.
As he was threatened by rival Yuan Shao in the north and could not divide his attention, Cao Cao attempted to further reinforce the alliance with Sun Ce by marrying the daughter of his relative Cao Ren to Sun Ce's youngest brother Sun Kuang.
Cao Cao became concerned about such developments in his rear, but his cousin Cao Ren observed that Liu Bei could not have too much control over his new men given by Yuan Shao.
So Cao Cao sent Cao Ren to deal with the rebellion.
Cao Ren succeeded, killing the rebel leader Liu Pi and routing Liu Bei.
Cao Ren again responded to the threat by defeating Han Meng at Mount Jiluo ( 雞洛山 ; 50 li northeast of present-day Xinmi, Henan ).
In 219, Cao Cao's cousin and leading general Cao Ren was besieged at the fortress at Fancheng ( 樊城 ; present-day Fancheng District, Hubei ) by Guan Yu.

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