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    Homepage - Chinese Idioms - Lesson 19:yī gŭ zuò qì 一鼓作气
yī gŭ zuò qì :一鼓作气:Press on to the finish without letup
     During the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476BC) , the State of Qi launched an attack against the State of Lu. Qi was much stronger than Lu. The King of Lu led the army by himself. The two parties met at a place named Chang Shao. When the King of Lu prepared to start the offensive, Cao Gui, his general, stopped him and said: "Wait a moment! The time has not come." Then they came to a high stage to observe the battle formation of the Qi's army. At this time, they heard the sounds of drumming and saw the Qi's army charging head-on. The King of Lu wanted to rebut the charge but Cao Gui stopped him again. After a while, the Qi's charged for the second time. But the Lu's took no action. The Qi soldiers' morale lowered after two vain attempts. After the third vain advance attack, the morale greatly declined. The soldiers were so tired that they sat down to rest. "Now, our chance has come!" said the general. Then the Lu's army attacked the enemy bravely. The Qi army fled helter-skelter .At last the Lu has won the battle.
        Originally, the idiom means "The fighting strength in the first drums is the highest." Later, it has been used to say "to press on to the finish without letup".

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