Empress Xiaoyiren

Empress Xiaoyiren (Manchu: Hiyoošungga Fujurangga Gosin Hūwanghu; died 24 August 1689) was a Chinese empress and the third Empress Consort of the Kangxi Emperor of the qing dynasty.

Empress Xiaoyiren was born in the Manchu Tunggiya clan. Her personal name is unknown. She was the daughter of Tong Guowei (佟國維), a duke and Minister of Internal Defence (領侍衛內大臣), and his wife, who was of the Manchu Heseri clan. Lady Tunggiya was also a niece of Empress Xiaokangzhang, mother of the Kangxi Emperor, therefore she was a maternal cousin of Kangxi. Lady Tunggiya had a younger sister, who became the Kangxi Emperor's Imperial Noble Consort Quehui (愨惠皇貴妃; September 1668 - 24 April 1743).

It is unknown when Lady Tunggiya entered the Forbidden City. She was first mentioned in 1677 when the Kangxi Emperor bestowed titles upon his concubines. Lady Tunggiya received the rank of a Noble Consort (貴妃). As she was the only concubine who held that rank, she did not have any additions to her title to distinguish her from the other concubines. When Empress Xiaozhaoren died in 1678, Lady Tunggiya was placed in charge of Kangxi's concubines in the inner palace. In the same year, another of the Kangxi Emperor's concubines, known historically as Empress Xiaogongren, gave birth to a son, Yinzhen, who would become the future Yongzheng Emperor. By tradition concubines did not raise their own children so Lady Tunggiya was tasked with the upbringing of Yinzhen.

In early 1681 Lady Tunggiya was elevated to the status of Imperial Noble Consort (皇貴妃). On 13 July 1683 she gave birth to the Kangxi Emperor's eighth daughter, who died prematurely at the age of one month.

In 1689 Lady Tunggiya became seriously ill and the Kangxi Emperor instated her as Empress. She died on 24 August that year and was interred in the Jingling Mausoleum in the Eastern Qing Tombs in Hebei . She was granted the posthumous title of "Empress Xiaoyiren".

Last update 08-05-2012

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