Emperor Yuan of Han

Han Yuandi
Emperor of the Han Dynasty
Reign48 - 33 BCE
PredecessorEmperor Xuan of Han
SuccessorEmperor Cheng of Han
Born75 BCE
Chang'an, Han Empire
Died8 July 33 BCE (age 42)
Chang'an, Han Empire
Wei ling, Xianyang
Full name
Family name: Liu ()
Given name: Shi ()
Posthumous name
FatherEmperor Xuan of Han
MotherEmpress Gong'ai
Emperor Yuan of Han
Traditional Chinese漢元帝
Simplified Chinese汉元帝
Literal meaningThe Primal Emperor of Han
Alternative Chinese name
Traditional Chinese劉奭
Simplified Chinese刘奭
Literal meaning(personal name)

Emperor Yuan of Han (75 BC – 8 July 33 BC) was an emperor of the Chinese Han Dynasty. He reigned from 48 to 33 BC. Emperor Yuan was remembered for the promotion of Confucianism as the official creed of Chinese government. He appointed Confucius adherents to important government posts.

However, at the same time that he was solidifying Confucianism's position as the official ideology, the empire's condition slowly deteriorated due to his indecisiveness and inability to stop factional infighting between officials in his administration, and his trusting of certain corrupt officials.

Family background

When Emperor Yuan was born as Liu Shi in 75 BC, his parents Liu Bingyi and Xu Pingjun were commoners without titles. Bingyi was the great-grandson of Emperor Wu, and his grandfather Liu Ju was Emperor Wu's crown prince, until he was forced by Emperor Wu's paranoia into a failed rebellion in 91 BC while Bingyi was still just an infant, in the aftermaths of which Prince Ju committed suicide and virtually his entire family was wiped out. Bingyi was spared because of his young age, but became a commoner and survived on the largess of others. One of whom was chief eunuch Zhang He, who had been an advisor for Prince Ju before his rebellion, and who was punished by being castrated.

Circa 76 BC, Zhang wanted to marry his granddaughter to Bingyi, but his brother Zhang Anshi (張安世), then an important official, opposed, fearing that it would bring trouble. Zhang, instead, invited one of his subordinate eunuchs (who had also been castrated by Emperor Wu), Xu Guanghan (許廣漢), to dinner, and persuaded him to marry his daughter Xu Pingjun to Liu Bingyi. When Xu's wife heard this, she became extremely angry and refused, but because Zhang was Xu's superior, Xu did not dare to renege on the promise, and Bingyi and Pingjun were married, in a ceremony entirely paid by Zhang (because Bingyi could not afford to). Zhang also paid the bride price. After marriage, Bingyi heavily depended on his wife's family for support.

Other Languages
تۆرکجه: یوان (هان)
Bân-lâm-gú: Hàn Goân-tè
Deutsch: Han Yuandi
français: Han Yuandi
한국어: 전한 원제
Bahasa Indonesia: Kaisar Yuan dari Han
Nederlands: Han Yuandi
日本語: 元帝 (漢)
norsk: Han Yuandi
polski: Han Yuandi
português: Yuan de Han
русский: Юань-ди (Хань)
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Car Yuan od Hana
українська: Лю Ши
Tiếng Việt: Hán Nguyên Đế
粵語: 劉奭
中文: 汉元帝