Born in the Chinese state of Lu in 551 B.C., Confucius is raised by his mother after his father dies when he is only three. He marries at 19 and enters the service of the local nobility. At 32, he becomes tutor to the Prince of Lu's children, eventually becoming a politician at 51. His career peaks are the roles of Lu's justice minister and eventually prime minister. The land prospers for four years, but Confucius grows disenchanted with court intrigues. For the following 12 years, he wanders the neighboring states, offering advice to their rulers.