Zhou’s ancestor could be traced to Houji, the father of agriculture.
Legend said that Houji was born after his mother stepped onto the footprints of a giant and that Houji, being deserted to the moutains and lakes by his mother, was taken care of by beasts and birds.
Another eight generations or three hundred years would be Zhou’s founder, Gugong (aka Tanfu). When Tanfu was dwelling in Bin, the wild tribes of the North attacked him. He tried to serve them with skins and silks, but they were not satisfied. He tried to serve them with dogs and horses, but they were not satisfied, and then with pearls and jade, but they were not satisfied. What they sought was his territory. Tanfu said to his people, ‘To dwell with the elder brother and cause the younger brother to be killed, or with the father and cause the son to be killed,–this is what I cannot bear to do. Make an effort, my children, to remain here. What difference is there between being my subjects, or the subjects of those wild people? And I have heard that a man does not use that which he employs for nourishing his people to injure them.’ Thereupon he took his staff and switch and left, but the people followed him in an unbroken train, and he established a new state at the foot of mount Qi.
Zhuang-zi said, ‘Thus Tanfu might be pronounced one who could give its due honour to life. ‘
It is in zhouyuan that the Zhou’s political power spread quickly and developed into a main adversary of shang dynasty during the reign of three generations of kings, namely gugong, Jili, King Wen. Then King Wen moved again from Mountain Qi to Feng Yi. The purpose of this moving might be that King Wen wanted to be closer to Shang which was a more civilized world, and also to make it easier to launch an attack against Shang later. Zhou dynasty had totally moved its capital three times, the last move was supervised by the Duke of Zhou(Dan), who was ordered by his nephew, King Cheng, to move those people from the old capital Chao Ge of Shang to Luo Yi and monitor them there. Later Luo Yi became the Eastern Capital of Zhou.