Youlan (noble)

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Youlan
Born 1884 (1884)
Died 1921 (aged 36–37)
Beijing, China
Spouse Zaifeng
Issue Puyi
Pujie
Yunying
Yunhe
Yunying
House Guwalgiya (by birth)
Aisin-Gioro (by marriage)
Father Ronglu
Youlan
Traditional Chinese 幼蘭
Simplified Chinese 幼兰

Youlan (1884–1921), also known as the Princess Consort Chun or informally as Lady Aisin-Gioro, was the formal spouse of Zaifeng (Prince Chun), a Manchu prince of the Qing dynasty. She and her husband were the biological parents of Puyi, the last Emperor of China and the Qing dynasty. She also bore Zaifeng another son and three daughters.

Life[edit]

Youlan was born in the Manchu Guwalgiya clan, which was under the Plain White Banner. Her father, Ronglu (1836–1903), was a staunch supporter of Empress Dowager Cixi. In return, the Empress Dowager arranged for Youlan to marry Zaifeng (Prince Chun), a half-brother of the Guangxu Emperor. The marriage, however, turned out to be an unhappy one, partly because Zaifeng disliked Ronglu due to his support for the Empress Dowager. Youlan started as a concubine of Zaifeng, but soon became Zaifeng's formal spouse after his first formal spouse died. She bore Zaifeng five children: two sons (Puyi and Pujie) and three daughters (Yunying (韞媖), Yunhe (韞龢) and Yunying (韞穎)).

Youlan was separated from Puyi when he was still very young after he was "adopted" into the imperial lineage to succeed the Guangxu Emperor. This meant that Puyi was no longer legally a son of her and Zaifeng. She was only allowed to see Puyi on rare occasions, as his upbringing was entrusted to palace eunuchs and maids. She lived in the Northern Residence (北府) in Beijing with her husband. Sometime after 1911, Zaifeng took a concubine, Lady Denggiya (鄧佳氏), and had six children with her.

Youlan committed suicide in 1921 by swallowing opium after being publicly reprimanded by Dowager Consort Duankang for Puyi's misconduct. Dowager Consort Duankang was the highest-ranked woman in the Forbidden City after the death of Empress Dowager Longyu in 1913.

References[edit]