Fun Facts about Chinese Culture and History

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Li Chun -- Successful Eliminator of Warlords and Emperor With No Queen

Li Chun (778 -- 820) was highly appreciated by his grandfather Emperor Li Kuo, who raised him as the heir of the Tang Dynasty.

 

Chun's grandfather and father passed away in the same year, and he ascended to the throne when he was 27 years old.

 

It was not sure that whether his grandfather, the Emperor Li Kuo, had ever told Li Chun about how prosperous their empire used to be, and the dream that he had fought for. But Li Chun completely accomplished the big challenge that his grandfather didn’t finish. 

 

Surprising Assets From Li Chun's Grandfather

When Li Chun ascended to the throne, he found that his self-contradicted grandfather, the Emperor Li Kuo, left him a great deal of money in the exchequer, and a strong and well trained troop that was only loyal to the emperor.

 

It turned out that in Emperor Li Kuo’s frustrated late years, he took many blames for collecting large amount of money; but he gave his grandson a chance to realize their dream.

 

The enlarged strong royal troop became a powerful weapon for Emperor Li Chun.

Big Victories on Defeating Warlords and Taking Back Power

Emperor Li Chun, also respected as Tang Xian Zong, didn’t fail his grandfather’s effort and expectation.

 

The year when Li Chun became emperor, a warlord of Tang Empire initiated a rebel war, when other warlords staying in their hald independant kingdoms, observing and trying to figure out how the new emperor would handle the rebellion, and what his policies would be.

 

Li Chun decisively organized his royal troop to fight back and achieved absolute success soon.

 

In the next following years, Emperor Li Chun defeated powerful warlords one by one, resolutely and smartly.

 

That "abrogation one at a time" strategy worked very well; after some powerful warlords were defeated, others surrendered and gave back lots of powers and lands to Li Chun's central government.

 

Emperor Li Chun's Excellent Govenance 

Additionally, Emperor Li Chun nominated and trusted many intelligent, honest and righteous ministers, who completely supported his political conceptions.

 

Unlike some of his ancestors, Chun controlled the eunuch group very well; he did nominate some of them to certain positions, but never let them over powerful or have the chance to manipulate politics.

 

With his capable and trusted ministers' governance, economy and agriculture recovered gradually; people lived in peace and wealth again.

 

Though they never reached the prosperity that it was in the first century of the Tang Dynasty, everything was in recovering and flourishing. 

Reasons that Emperor Li Chun Never Wanted A Queen

Emperor Li Chun never nominated a queen in his entire life. That didn’t mean he was not interested in women; on the contrary, he had lots of imperial concubines.

 

He highly valued centralized and absolute power, especially after he gained that after so many difficult wars.

 

But a queen and her clan might be very powerful and bring unpredictable influences to politics. He also didn’t want a queen who has the right to intervene with his sex life or manage his other women.

 

So he made sure that all of his women were equal and he could enjoy a free love life. 

 

This behavior then was applied by many of the following emperors of the Tang Dynasty.

 

However, there was never an absolute equality. One of his concubine was the granddaughter of the great General Guo Ziyi, which made her and her son were widely supported by many ministers and generals. Later, her son was nominated as crown prince.

 

Emperor Li Chun did almost everything that an excellent monarch would do in the history of China, such as having selected and trusted talented people and developed agriculture and economy.

 

He also decisively and successfully defeated strong warlords and retrieved centralized power. Those achievements eliminated potential possibilities of separation of the nation, so that Empire Tang was progressing to a better direction. 

 

Li Chun's Sudden, Controversial Departure

This excellent monarch departed out of a sudden.

 

Official documents recorded that he passed away because of sickness; others suspected that his most powerful concubine, the granddaughter of Gneral Guo Ziyi, also the mother of the crown prince, assassinated him, because Li Chun always wanted to renominate another son to be the heir.

 

After Emperor Li Chun’s death, this concubine’s political group was in charge of the government, her son and three grandsons became emperors in a row, but only the last grandson was a good monarch.

 

In the meanwhile, warlords and nearby nomadic regimes, again, tried to obtain more power and land.