Born 1602; died 1678. Chinese military leader.
Wu San-kuei commanded the troops of the Ming Dynasty that defended Shanhaikuan against the Manchus. In 1644, after a rebel army of peasants under Li Tzu-ch’eng took Peking, Wu San-kuei went over to the Manchus and helped them suppress the uprising known as the Peasant War of 1628–45. The Manchu court appointed him vicegerent of Yunnan. When it became apparent that the Manchu authorities intended to abolish the vicegerencies in South and Southwest China, he initiated in 1673 a rebellion that encompassed several southern and southwestern provinces. The rebellion was crushed after his death in 1681. In China, Wu San-kuei’s name has become a synonym for treachery.