Emperor Mingzong of later tang

Emperor Mingzong of later tang (後唐明宗), personal name Li Siyuan (Chinese: 李嗣源; pinyin: Lǐ Sìyuán), original name/nickname Miaojilie (邈佶烈), name later changed to Li Dan (李亶) (changed 927), was emperor of the later tang from 926 to 933.


Li Siyuan was the adopted son of Li Keyong, a Shatuo Turk who served under the tang dynasty and established the State of Jin upon the demise of the tang dynasty. With the help of Khitan leader Abaoji, his son, Li Cunxu was able to establish the later tang in 923. Li Cunxu had destroyed the later liang dynasty in 923 and established his capital in Luoyang, to signify a restoration of the tang dynasty, called the later tang. His rule only lasted three years as he was killed during an officer's rebellion in 926. As Li Keyong's adopted son, Li Siyuan ascended the throne.


By the time Li Siyuan had assumed the throne of the later tang, relations with the powerful Khitan to the north had deteriorated. In accordance with custom, an ambassador was sent to the Khitan Supreme Capital to inform Abaoji of the death of the emperor. However, Abaoji used the occasion to try to gain territory from the later tang, especially the strategic Sixteen Prefectures, and even briefly imprisoned the envoy.

Though Abaoji soon died, the enmity that had been developing between the two did not fade. However, the major challenges to his rule came from the south and from within, particularly the Former Shu territory that Li Cunxu had annexed. The death knell of the dynasty would come from within with Khitan help. In 936, Shi Jingtang, the son-in-law of Li Siyuan himself, launched a rebellion against his rule. With Khitan help, he overthrew the last later tang

Emperor and established his own dynasty, the later jin dynasty.

Mingzong's counselor and minister was An Chonghui.

Depiction in media

Director Zhang Yimou's 2006 supermovie Curse of the Golden Flower apparently has its action during this period, but the screenplay doesn't follow the historical facts, being more fictional.

Personal information


Li Ni (李霓), posthumously honored Emperor Xiaocheng (honored 927)


Lady Liu, posthumously honored the Lady of Song, and then Empress Yi (honored 927)


Empress Cao (created 930), Empress Hewuxian, mother of Princess of Jin

Major Concubines

Lady Xia, posthumously honored Lady of Jin, then Empress Zhaoyi, mother of Princes Congrong and Conghou

Lady Wei, posthumously honored Lady of Lu, then Empress Xuanxian, mother of Prince Congke

Consort Wang, later honored Consort Dowager, adoptive mother of Prince Congyi

Other Concubines

Consort Wang, the Lady of Qi

Consort Ge, the Lady of Zhou

Consort Liu, the Lady of Zhao

Consort Sun, the Lady of Chu

Consort Zhang, the Lady of Cao

Consort Guo, the Lady of Wei (魏)

Consort Yu, the Lady of Zheng

Consort Wang, the Lady of Wei (衛)

Consort Cui, the Lady of Cai

Consort Zhai, the Lady of Teng

Consort Wu, the Lady of Ju

Consort Gao, the Lady of Bohai

Consort Shen, the Lady of Taiyuan

Consort Zhu, the Lady of Wu Commandery

Consort Liao, the Lady of Yingchuan

Consort Liu, the Lady of Pengcheng

Consort Meng, the Lady of Xianyang

Consort Zhang, the Lady of Qinghe

Consort Wang, the Lady of Taiyuan

Consort Fu, the Lady of Yingchuan

Consort Zhang

Consort Jiang, posthumously created the Lady of Jiyang

Consort Li, the Lady of Longxi

Consort Cui, the Lady of Qinghe

Consort Li, the Lady of Chengji

Consort Tian, the Lady of Xianyang

Consort Bai, the Lady of Nanyang


Li Congshen (李從審), later adopted by Emperor Zhuangzong and name changed to Li Jijing (李繼璟) (changed 926, killed by Li Shaorong 926), name posthumously changed to Li Congjing (李從璟)

Li Congrong (李從榮), the Prince of Qin (created 930, killed by An Congyi (安從益) 933)

Li Conghou (李從厚), the Prince of Song (created 930), later Emperor Min of later tang

Li Congyi (李從益), the Prince of Xu (created 933), later the Duke of Xun during later jin dynasty (created 939), later the Prince of Xu during Liao Dynasty conquest of central China (created 947), later emperor of unnamed state (created 947), later the Prince of Liang (title claimed 947, executed by Emperor Gaozu of later han (five dynasties) 947)

Two daughters older than the Princess of Jin

Princess of Jin, originally Princess of Yongning, later Princess of Wei (created 933), later Grand Princess of Jin (created 935), later Empress Li during later jin dynasty

Adoptive Child

Li Congke (李從珂), né Wang (王), the Prince of Lu (created 933), later emperor

Last update 18-06-2012

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