King of Huainan

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King of Huainan (淮南王) was a noble title during the Han dynasty in China. It was created by Liu Bang, King of Han, later Emperor Gao of Han in 202 BC for Ying Bu (英布), former King of Jiujiang. Ying Bu rebelled against Emperor Gao of Han in 196 BC and was killed in action. The title of Prince of Huainan was later conferred upon several people, the earliest being Liu Zhang (劉長), the youngest son of Liu Bang. Since Huainan is a rich and important patch of territory, the Princes were invariably men of power and most met with untimely deaths because they either covet the imperial throne or were suspected of such ambitions.[1] One such is Prince Liu An (劉安), who founded an academy at Huainan. It was this academy that compiled the notable book known as the Huainanzi (淮南子).[2] During his life, Liu An was engaged in a political and cosmological argument with Dong Zhongshu. Liu's Huainanzi leaves room for multiple cultural traditions in China through the concept of the Dao. By contrast, Dong advocated cultural centralization, placing Heaven, and the Emperor's Mandate of Heaven, over all other concepts. Thus, scholar Aihe Wang views the defeat of the King of Huainan as symbolic of China's increasing cultural centralization during the Han dynasty.[3] The territory of Huainan was eventually subdivided and the title became extinct.[1]

Kings of Huainan[edit]


  1. ^ a b Sima, Qian (1993). Burton Watson, ed. Records of the Grand Historian (Revised ed.). New York, New York: Columbia University Press. pp. 321–352. ISBN 0-231-08166-9. 
  2. ^ Major, John S. (1993). Heaven and earth in early Han thought: chapters three, four and five of the Huainanzi (Illustrated ed.). SUNY Press. p. 2. ISBN 0-7914-1585-6. 
  3. ^ Wang, Aihe (2000). Cosmology and Political Culture in Early China (Illustrated ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 183–197. ISBN 0-521-62420-7.