Emperor Hui of Han

Liu Ying
Emperor of the Han Dynasty
Reign 195 BC – 188 BC
Predecessor Emperor Gaozu
Successor Emperor Qianshao
Born 210 BC
Pei County, Qin Empire
Died 188 BC (aged 22)
Chang'an, Han Empire
Full name
Family name: Liu (劉 liú)
Given name: Ying (盈 yíng)
Posthumous name
Short: Hui (惠, hùi)
Full: Xiaohui (孝惠, xiào hùi)
"filial and benevolent"
Father Emperor Gaozu of Han
Mother Empress Dowager Lü
Emperor Hui of Han
Traditional Chinese 劉盈
Simplified Chinese 刘盈

Emperor Hui of Han (210 BC – 26 September 188 BC) was the second emperor of the Han Dynasty in China. He was the second son of the first Han emperor, Han Gaozu and Empress Dowager Lü. He is generally remembered as a weak character dominated by his mother, Empress Dowager Lü, personally kind and generous but unable to escape the impact of her viciousness. He tried to protect Ruyi, Prince Yin of Zhao, his younger half-brother, from being murdered by Empress Dowager Lü, but failed. After that he indulged himself in drinking and sex and died at a relatively young age. Empress Dowager Lü installed two of his sons, Liu Gong and Liu Hong (known collectively as Emperors Shao of Han), the sons of the Emperor's concubine(s) after he died without a designated heir. Emperor Hui's wife was Empress Zhang Yan, a niece of his by his sister Princess Yuan of Lu; their marriage was the result of insistence by Empress Dowager Lü and was a childless one.

Early life and years as crown prince

Liu Ying's childhood is not completely clear. What is known is that he was not his father Liu Bang's oldest son—that would be Liu Fei, who would later be made the Prince of Qi. However, Liu Ying was considered to be the proper heir because his mother, the later Empress Lü, was Liu Bang's wife, while Liu Fei's mother was either a concubine or a mistress.

What is also known is that during Chu–Han Contention, when Liu Bang fought a five-year war with Xiang Yu for supremacy over the Chinese world, his mother, his sister, and he did not initially follow his father to the Principality of Han (modern Sichuan, Chongqing, and southern Shaanxi); rather, they stayed in his father's home territory, perhaps in his home town of Pei (沛縣, in modern Xuzhou, Jiangsu) deep in Xiang's Principality of Western Chu, presumably with his grandfather Liu Zhijia.

In 205 BC, Liu Bang appeared to be near total victory, having captured Xiang's capital of Pengcheng. How his family received this news was unclear, but a few months later, when Xiang responded and crushed Liu's forces, Liu fled and, in his flight, attempted to pass through his home town to take his family with him. He was able to find his children and carry them along with him, but his father and wife were captured by Xiang's forces and kept as hostages—and would not be returned to him until Liu and Xiang temporarily made peace in 203 BC. The then-very young Liu Ying must have then spent these days not knowing what the eventual fate of his grandfather and mother would be.

After Liu Bang's victory and self-declaration as the emperor (later known as Emperor Gao), thus establishing the Han Dynasty, in 202 BC, he made his wife empress and Liu Ying, as his proper heir, crown prince. Under the title of Ying Taizi ("Crown Prince Ying"), he was considered to be kind and tolerant, characteristics that Emperor Gao did not like. Rather, he favored his young son Liu Ruyi, whom he considered to be more like him and whose mother, Consort Qi, was his favorite concubine. With the support of the officials, however, Prince Ying's status as heir survived despite Consort Qi's machinations.

As crown prince, Prince Ying, along with his mother, would be the ones who would rule on important matters at the capital in his father's absence during various campaigns. When Ying Bu rebelled in 196 BC, Emperor Gao was ill and considered sending Prince Ying as the commander of the forces against Ying Bu rather than campaigning himself, but at the suggestion of Empress Lü (who averred that the generals, who were generally Emperor Gao's old friends, might not fully obey the young prince), went on the campaign himself. Prince Ying was instead put in charge of home territories around the capital Chang'an, assisted by Confucian scholar Shusun Tong (叔孫通) and strategist Zhang Liang (張良). He appeared to carry out the tasks competently but without distinction.

Prince Ying succeeded to the throne of Han when his father died in 195 BC from complications of an arrow wound suffered during the campaign against Ying Bu.

Other Languages
Bân-lâm-gú: Hàn Hūi-tè
Deutsch: Han Huidi
français: Han Huidi
한국어: 전한 혜제
hrvatski: Car Hui od Hana
italiano: Han Huidi
Nederlands: Han Huidi
日本語: 恵帝 (漢)
norsk: Han Huidi
occitan: Han Huidi
polski: Han Huidi
português: Hui de Han
русский: Хуэй-ди (Хань)
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Car Hui od Hana
svenska: Han Huidi
Türkçe: Hui (Han)
українська: Лю Їн (Хуей-ді)
Tiếng Việt: Hán Huệ Đế
粵語: 劉盈
中文: 汉惠帝