Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

Emperor Zhongzong of Tang was the third son of Emperor Gaozong and Wu Zetian, and an emperor with a tragic fate.

His family was an emperor professional household, his father, mother, and younger brother were all emperors, and the eldest brother Li Hong was posthumously honored as the emperor of filial piety; the most bizarre thing was that his wife Empress Wei, his daughter Princess Anle, and his sister Princess Tianping all wanted to be emperors.

Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

(Lee Hsien stills)

And his sadness also lies in the fact that there are too many emperors in the family and too many people who want to be emperors. Four famous strong women in history have all been met by him, a strong mother, a domineering sister, an ambitious wife and an unreasonable daughter.

In June of the fourth year of Jinglong (710), Li Xian died suddenly without any warning, at the age of fifty-five. His mysterious death has become a historical case. One said it was poisoning, the other said it was a sudden disease.

Zheng Shi said that he was poisoned by Empress Wei and her daughter Princess Anle.

The "Zizhi Tongjian" gives the following statement: Several ministers represented by Yan Qinrong, who joined the army in Xuzhou, have come to the stage, saying that Wei Hou was fornicating, interfering in state affairs, and plotting with Princess Anle, Wu Yanxiu, Zong Chuke, and others to subvert the society. If placed in the past, Yan Qinrong had already met the King of Yan, and this time Li Xianyi changed his absolute trust in his wife and children, interrogated him in detail, and released Yan Qinrong.

It was obvious that Li Xian was already suspicious of his wife and daughter. Wei Hou already had ambitions, plus he was worried that the matter with her lovers Yang Jun and Ma Qinke would be leaked. Therefore, he consulted with the equally ambitious Princess Anle to poison Li Xian's cake soup and poison the emperor who was in the way.

Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

(Princess Anle and Wei Hou stills)

Moreover, Yang Jun is good at cooking, Ma Qinke is good at medical skills, and the poison cake soup made is both delicious and full of medicinal effects, ensuring a bowl of death.

According to the records of the canonical history, the whole process of Li Xian's poisoning was very logical, with clear motives and clear purposes.

However, many historians have put forward different views on Li Xian's death, saying that he was not poisoned by his wife and daughter, but may have died of a sudden illness. There are three reasons for this:

First, the history books first proposed that Li Xian's poisoning was the tang long coup that followed, and that it was Princess Taiping and Li Longji's mobilization of the army, in order to motivate the soldiers to kill Wei Hou and avenge the former emperor. Moreover, history is written for the victors, Wei Hou and An Le have died in the coup anyway, Li Longji can say whatever he wants, and there is no proof of his death.

Second, Empress Wei and Princess Anle had insufficient motivation to poison Li Xian, and their preparations for seeking power and usurping the throne were not sufficient, and they also needed to rely on Li Xian to continue to develop their power, and it was inappropriate to poison Li Xian at this time.

Third, the Li family has a history of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, Taizong, Empress Eldest Sun, Gaozong, etc., all suffer from such diseases, the life expectancy is not long, and this kind of disease is sudden and strong, the mortality rate is high, Li Xian is likely to suddenly fall ill and die.

Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

Of these two accounts, I prefer the canonical record, because:

First of all, Wei Hou and Anle's motivation to poison Li Xian was sufficient.

After the Shenlong coup d'état, Li Xian ascended the throne, when he was like a light rod commander, without his own administrative team. The strategy he chose was to support Empress Wei and Shangguan Wan'er, to win over Wu Sansi and the kings of the Wu clan, and to suppress the heroes of the coup.

After years of suffering and sharing, Li Xian had absolute trust in Wei Hou, but he did not expect that Wei Hou's ambitions were quite empress, and Wei Hou did not dare to let Li Xian know this secret, which was carried out in secret. Therefore, at that time, it seemed that the Li and Wu families controlled the power, but in essence, it was the Li, Wu, and Wei families.

After Wu Sansi was killed by the Jinglong coup launched by Li Chongjun, Wei Hou quickly intervened, filling the power vacuum left by Wu Sansi, installing the Wei clan, and drawing in Zong Chuke, Dou Huaizhen and other prime ministers, plus the support of Shangguan Wan'er and Princess Anle, and had already seized power.

At this time, Li Xian thought that they were one husband and wife, grasped the overall situation, and ate, drank and had fun all day. However, Wei Hou was inseparable from him and had his own little secret. In fact, Li Xian is still the commander of the light rod.

Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

(Princess Anle stills)

If Wei Hou wanted to usurp the throne smoothly, he also had to win the support of his daughter, because Anle was also ambitious and wanted to be the imperial concubine. Li Xian could not let his daughter become the imperial concubine, so could Wei Hou be able to?

The answer is yes, because Empress Wei's son Li Chongrun has died, and his parents and four younger brothers, as well as all his nephews, have died in Qinzhou, where they were exiled. There are only three daughters around, and the closest is Anle. Therefore, if Empress Wei ascends to the throne, there is a great hope of being the empress dowager.

Although Li Xian was confused and unobtrusive, his wife and daughter's vain attempt to subvert the society was a major matter, and many loyal ministers advised him in different ways, which finally aroused his vigilance.

At this time, Li Xian's existence was no longer a husband and a reliance for Wei Hou, and for Anle, he was no longer a father. He had become an obstacle to their great cause, so they joined forces and cooked a bowl of fragrant soup of poisonous cakes.

Judging from the consequences, Wei Hou still had a certain degree of control over the situation. After Li Xian's death, Wei Hou quickly mobilized 50,000 fu soldiers into Chang'an, and installed cousins, nephews, sons-in-law, and nephews, a total of seven people, and controlled 30,000 forbidden troops and 50,000 fu soldiers. If it weren't for Li Longji's ability to win over middle- and lower-ranking officers in the Forbidden Army and make a move in advance, then Li Tangsheji would have been really dangerous.

Therefore, Wei Hou and An Le had every reason to poison Li Xian.

Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

(Wei Hou and Li Xian's stills)

Second, the claim of disease is unscientific.

The Li Tang imperial family is the inheritance of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, but it cannot be ruled out that Li Xian inherited the excellent body of his mother Wu Zetian, and Emperor Wu was still quick thinking in his eighties. Moreover, there is no record of Li Appearing ill in the history books, but only sports activities such as beating and tug-of-war, although it is a foolish act, it can be proved that although Li Xian is more than half a hundred years old, his body is still healthy.

On the contrary, Wei Hou was already more than half a hundred years old, and if Li Xian was not solved, when would she be able to become empress!

Therefore, according to Zhengshi, the possibility of Li Xian being poisoned by his wife and daughter is extremely great.

Text: Bearfish laughs to themselves

Was Emperor Zhongzong's sudden death by Empress Wei and Princess Anle, or did he die of illness?

(Lee Long-ki stills)

Shallow and clumsy, just be generous.

References: Zizhi Tongjian, New Book of Tang, Old Book of Tang.

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