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Emperor Gao of Han China

Format of naming convention in English is under discussion at Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (Chinese).

Emperor Gao of Han China, ch 漢高祖, py. hn gāo zŭ, wg. Han Kao-tsu, (256 BC - 195 BC) was the first emperor of the Chinese Han Dynasty and one of the only two dynasty founders who emerged from the peasant class. The other one was Hongwu of Ming Dynasty. Before becoming an emperor, he was also called Lord Pei after his birthplace.

Personal information
Family name Liu (劉 li) in Chinese
Given name Bang (邦 bāng) in Chinese
Era name none
Father Liu Zhijia (劉執嘉)
Mother Wang Hanshi (王含始)
Wife Empress L, then Empress Dowager L
Major concubines
  • consort Cao
  • consort Zhao
  • consort Zhang
  • consort Wei
  • consort Qi
  • consort Bo
Children 8 sons including
  • Emperor Hui and Princess Luyuan from Empress L
  • Prince Ruyi of Zhao from consort Qi
  • Emperor Wen from consort Bo
  • Prince Fei of Qi from consort Cao
Duration of reign 206 BC-195 BC
Temple name Gaozu (高祖, py. gāo zŭ), literary meaning "high [highly respectable] progenitor"
Courtesy name 季 (py. j)
Posthumous name 高 (py. gāo), literary meaning "high (highly respectable)"
Other names and titles Lord Pei (沛公 pi gōng)

Early Life

Born to Liu Zhijia (劉執嘉) and Wang Hanshi (王含始), a peasant family in Zhongyangli, Fengyi (豐邑), Pei County (沛縣) (today Fengyi County, Jiangsu Province), he served as a low ranked police officer. He was not contented with living from hand to mouth. Instead, he had a lot of friends from the peasent class including cart driver, bodyguard and butcher owing to his generosity and broad-mindedness.

In the years following the death of Qin Shihuang, Liu Bang found himself in revolt for a curious reason. He was in charge of transporting a number of prisoners and was delayed by the weather. Despite the fact that the delay was due to circumstances beyond his control, he realized that the penalty for the delay was death. Having nothing to lose, he decided to rebel against the Qin dynasty with his prisoners as the nucleus of his army.

His affection to Concubine Qi inflamed Empress Dowager Lu's torture of Qi and her son Liu Yuyi (Prince Ruyi of Zhao) after his death.

See also

Preceded by:
Western Han Dynasty Succeeded by:
Emperor Hui of Han China