Wang Zhengjun

Wang Zhengjun
Predecessor Empress Wang
Successor Empress Xu
Born 71 B.C.
Died 13 AD (aged 83)
Spouse Emperor Yuan of Han
Issue Emperor Cheng of Han
Full name
Family name: Wang 王
Given name: Zhengjun 政君

太子妃 Crown Princess (50–48 BC)
皇后 Empress (48–33 BC)
皇太后 Empress Dowager (33–7 BC)
太皇太后 Grand Empress Dowager (7 BC – 8)
新室文母太皇太后 Grand Empress Dowager Xinsin Wenwu (8–13)
Posthumous name
Empress Xiaoyuan 孝元皇后
Father Wang Jin, Marquess of Yangping
Mother Li Qin

Wang Zhengjun ( Chinese: 王政君; 71 BC – 13 AD), officially Empress Xiaoyuan (孝元皇后), later and more commonly known as Grand Empress Dowager Wang, born in Yuancheng (modern Handan, Hebei), was an empress during the Western Han dynasty of China, who played important roles during the reigns of five successive Han emperors—her husband, her son, her two stepgrandsons, and her stepgreat-grandnephew—and later (according to traditional historians, unwittingly) led to the usurpation of the throne by her nephew Wang Mang. She is largely viewed sympathetically by historians as an unassuming and benevolent if overly doting woman who suffered much in her long life, who tried to influence the empire as well as she could, and who was not a party to her nephew's machinations, but whose failure, leading to the downfall of the Western Han Dynasty, was her overdependence on her clan (the Wangs).

Early life

Wang was born the second daughter of the Minister of Justice and Lady Li. [1] Although she was one of 12 children, only Wang and two brothers were born to Lady Li. Her parents tried to find Wang a husband, her suitors expired before their plans came to fruition. One suitor was the Prince of Dongping, but he died before the marriage. After this, Wang dedicated herself to studying books and playing the guqin. At age 18, she entered the palace as a palace woman, in the service of one of the imperial concubines. [1]

Consort Sima, the favorite consort of Crown Prince Liu Shi died from an illness. Crown Prince Shi was grief-stricken, became ill, and refused to see any of his concubines. [1] His father, Emperor Xuan, suggested that Empress Xiaoxuan select palace women to attend the crown prince, as all the crown prince's concubines were so disagreeable. [1] Wang was one of the palace women presented to the crown prince, among five others. The crown prince selected her and, three years after, Wang gave birth to a male child, Ao, whereas none of the crown prince's previous concubines had. [1]

Other Languages
hrvatski: Wang Zhengjun
Nederlands: Wang Zhengjun
日本語: 王政君
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Carica Wang Zhengjun
svenska: Wang Zhengjun
українська: Ван (імператриця)
Tiếng Việt: Vương Chính Quân
中文: 王政君