Imperial Noble Consort Huixian

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Imperial Noble Consort Huixian
Born Unknown
Died 1745
Burial 1752
Yuling Mausoleum, Eastern Qing tombs, China
Spouse Qianlong Emperor
House Gao (by birth)
Aisin Gioro (by marriage)
Father Gao Bin
Imperial Noble Consort Huixian
Traditional Chinese 慧賢皇貴妃
Simplified Chinese 慧贤皇贵妃

Imperial Noble Consort Huixian (died 1745)[1] was a consort of the Qianlong Emperor of the Qing dynasty.

Life[edit]

Imperial Noble Consort Huixian was of Han Chinese origin and her family name was Gao (高). Her personal name is unknown. In 1735, her family was promoted from a Han Chinese banner to the Manchu Bordered Yellow Banner, and in 1818 their family name "Gao" was changed to the Manchu-sounding "Gaogiya" (高佳).

Lady Gao's father, Gao Bin (高斌; 1693-1755), was initially a booi aha (house servant) of a Manchu family. He later took up official posts and served as a River Transport Supervisor (河道總督) and Grand Academician (大學士). Lady Gao also had a younger brother, Gao Heng (高恒). Sometime during the reign of the Yongzheng Emperor (r. 1722–1735), she became a concubine of Hongli, the emperor's fourth son.

In 1735, the Yongzheng Emperor died and was succeeded by Hongli, who was enthroned as the Qianlong Emperor. Around the time, Gao Bin wrote a memorial to the Yongzheng Emperor, thanking him for a bunch of lychees, but it was too late as the emperor had already died when the memorial reached the palace, so the Qianlong Emperor replied in place of his father:

"My father recognised your talent and promoted you to a high position. You should do your utmost to repay his grace. Even though your daughter is waiting on me, you should not be harbouring any ill intentions. This will not be tolerated by national law. If you serve the nation well with sincerity and integrity, I will not refrain from giving rewards to avoid being criticised for showing favouritism."[2]

The Qianlong Emperor granted Lady Gao the rank of Noble Consort. As Lady Gao was the only woman in the imperial harem holding the rank of Noble Consort at the time, she did not receive any special title to distinguish her from the emperor's other consorts.

In 1745, when Lady Gao became critically ill, the Qianlong Emperor promoted her to Imperial Noble Consort. However, she never managed to attend the promotion ceremony because she died two days after the emperor announced his decision to promote her. She was granted the posthumous title "Imperial Noble Consort Huixian". In 1752, she was interred in the Yuling Mausoleum at the Eastern Qing tombs.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Lady Gao's birth year was not recorded in official documents.
  2. ^ Ho & Bronson (2004).

References[edit]