Encyclopedia: Wang Yuanji

Wang Yuanji; Wang Yüanchi; 王元姬

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Wang Yuanji 王元姬

Lived: AD 217–268

Biographies:
None Available

Served: Jin

Empress dowager during Jin Dynasty. Wife of Sima Zhao and mother of Sima Yan.

Officer Details

Wade-Giles: Wang Yüanchi
Simplified Chinese: 王元姬
Pronunciation: Wang2 Yuan2ji1
Cantonese (Yale): Wong Yungei
Cantonese (Jyutpin): Wong Jyungei

Other Names: Lady Wang, Empress Wenming

Name Notes: Formerly Empress Wenming (文明皇后; “civil and understanding empress”)

Rank and Titles

Empress; Empress Dowager

Family and Relationships

Wang Lang (Grandfather); Wang Su (Father); Sima Zhao (Husband); Sima Yan, Sima You (Sons)

Literary Appearances

Romance of the Three Kingdoms: 119

Biography

Historic (Confirmed)

Wang Yuanji was the daughter of Wang Su, a Wei officer. [1] She married Sima Zhao (who became the de facto leader of Wei). At one point she advised her husband that, “Zhong Hui will cease to be loyal when he comes across profit. He is also enterprising and ambitious. If you show him too much favor, he will be certain to arise in rebellion. He should not be given too much trust.” [2] Her analysis on Zhong Hui turned out to be correct, as Zhong Hui later launched an insurrection against Sima Zhao’s rule. [3]

I have been unable to find more information about her.

[1]-Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms, AD 264, Note 5.2

[2]-Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms, AD 264, Point 5

[3]-Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms, AD 264, Point 9

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Literature and Language

Universal

May 13, 2014