Empress Xiaozhuang - Mother of the Qing Dynasty
Empress Xiaozhuang Wen, also honored as Mother of the Qing Dynasty by later generations, had assisted three emperors in her lifetime. During that period, the Qing Dynasty was undergoing a crucial transition from turmoil to stability. She tried hard to help the emperors reconcile the conflicts and strife within the imperial court, maintain social order and promote the unification of the country in the earlier years of the Qing Dynasty. Thus, she made great contributions in helping the emperors consolidate their ruling in the Central Plains.
Empress of Xiaozhuang Wen was brought up in an eminent Mongolian family. Her full name is Bumbutai Borjigit. She married Huang Taiji, prince of the Later Jin, in 1625. She was only 32 years old when Huang Taiji died, and her 6-year-old son Fu Lin, later called Emperor Shunzhi, inherited the throne. Unfortunately, Emperor Shunzhi died at the age of 24 and his successor was only 8 years old. The new emperor was Kang Xi. Xiao Zhuang took charge of Kang Xi"s upbringing and escorted her grandson through difficult and dangerous times, thus paving the way for the prosperity of the Qing Empire. By doing so, she established her unshakable position in political arena in the early years of the Qing Dynasty. In 1687, she died at the age of 75, and was buried in the Zhaoxiling Mausoleum, outside of the Eastern Mausoleum of the Qing Dynasty.