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The Drowned Concubine Zhen Fei


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#1 wateacher

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 01:27 AM

Greetings, I was in BeiJing last December meeting the In-laws for the first time and visited the well where the tragedy happened. The sense of loss, tragedy, and grief, was very strong there. I have heard that she had her arms and legs cut off before Cixi drowned her, but I also heard that she was simply pushed down the well. Which story is correct? The only time I can recall having felt such grief was at a few locations in the Gettysburg military park in the USA.

Edited by wateacher, 27 July 2006 - 01:28 AM.

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#2 General_Zhaoyun

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 08:56 PM

Cixi tortured quite a number of concubines, whom I believe Zhen Fei was one of them..
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#3 KaLing

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Posted 29 July 2006 - 06:30 AM

I think it was in these forums that I read she was mutilated until she looked like a armless, legless "pig"...

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#4 Sephodwyrm

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Posted 06 August 2006 - 08:46 PM

I thought that was Cixi's rival to the Emperor Xianfeng...

Anycase, Zhen Fei is the concubine of Cixi's nephew.
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#5 Centaur

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Posted 06 August 2006 - 09:07 PM

I think it was in these forums that I read she was mutilated until she looked like a armless, legless "pig"...


The mutilated lady is not Zhen Fei. The lady in question was one of the many consorts of Han Liu Bang, Consort Qi. Empress Lu was the one who ordered Consort Qi's limbs be hacked off and... well see the following

Empress Dowager LŁ got her chance in winter 195 BC.... She then tortured Consort Qi inhumanely -- by cutting her limbs off, blinding her, and deaftening her -- and Consort Qi would eventually die from the torture. When Emperor Hui saw Consort Qi in her tortured state, he cried outloud and became ill for about a year, complaining to his mother that he felt that he could no longer govern the empire, given that he, as the emperor, could not even protect the concubine and son so loved by his father.

Source: Wikipedia
Site: http://en.wikipedia....ess_Dowager_L√ľ

As for Zhen Fei, she was according to legend pushed down a well when the Imperial family were escaping the Allied Forces. The authenticity of this legend had been challenged many times and no one could actually ascertain that Zhen Fei was indeed pushed into the well.

Zhen Fei well
When the Allied Forces forced their way into Beijing in 1900, the favorite imperial concubine of Emperor Guangxu, Zhen Fei (Concubine Pearl), was ordered to be thrown and drowned in this well by Cixi.

Her Body was retrieved and the well dried up after Empress dowager returned to the palace from Xi'an in 1901. Consequently, it has been know as the "Zhen Fei Well".


Source: China Travel
Site: http://www.chinatrav...zhenfeiwell.htm

#6 KaLing

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Posted 12 August 2006 - 01:40 AM

Thankyou so much for clearing that up, Centaur! :)
These are such horrible and unfair deaths...

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#7 Mok

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Posted 12 August 2006 - 02:49 AM

These are such horrible and unfair deaths...


Aye. *sighs* :cry^:
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#8 BigEyes

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Posted 24 February 2007 - 03:50 AM

Some said that zhen fei committed sucide instead.....

Does anyone have the picture of that well? I seen it somewhere and the well-mouth seem small.. quite 'difficult' to jump or throw in? i dunno...

#9 wingchuntaiji

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Posted 25 February 2007 - 02:30 AM

Some said that zhen fei committed sucide instead.....

Does anyone have the picture of that well? I seen it somewhere and the well-mouth seem small.. quite 'difficult' to jump or throw in? i dunno...



She was pushed head-down the dinner plate-size hole. Her skeletal remain was retrieved when Cixi returned to the palace. I was there in October 2004, and I did a prayer to commemorate her as a heroine, and to harmonize the site. I took some pictures of the opening of the well. I 'll post it if I can find it. (=:

#10 Rong Qin Wang

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 12:23 AM

Zunjing de China History Forum members,

Alright, letís talk more regarding Concubine Zhenís personality rather than her tragic death. How do you guys feel about her? Concubine Zhen was certainly highly intelligent and received a rather unusual education as she was well-versed in foreign languages and technologies. This was probably why she was able to win the love of Emperor Guang Xu so easily as she was totally different from other women. Even her own sister, Concubine Jin, did not have the same type of personality nor did she have nearly as much knowledge as her sister on foreign affairs.

With this in mind, I really wonder how did historians back then view her? Was she considered as a rebellious concubine by a lot of people just because she was forward thinking? Of course, she always had the love and backup of the Emperor; however, he cannot even take care of himself.

Also, I would like to speculate on some alternatives. Letís just pretend that Empress Cixi passed away during Emperor Guang Xuís coup, would Emperor Guang Xu have successfully reformed the whole country with Concubine Zhen as his great assistant? What if she had given birth to the Emperorís only son, and the Emperor had passed away at a young age. Then, would Concubine Zhen, now being Empress Dowager, have contributed to the revival and stability of the Qing Dynasty in the same way Empress Xiao Zhuang did? I surmise I am just asking if whether or not Concubine Zhen would be on par with Empress Xiao Zhuang if she had also been given the same opportunities since she definitely was as talented and as virtuous.

I would appreciate any speculations or comments?

Xie Xie,

#11 fireball

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Posted 11 November 2007 - 06:23 PM

Alright, letís talk more regarding Concubine Zhenís personality rather than her tragic death. How do you guys feel about her? Concubine Zhen was certainly highly intelligent and received a rather unusual education as she was well-versed in foreign languages and technologies. This was probably why she was able to win the love of Emperor Guang Xu so easily as she was totally different from other women. Even her own sister, Concubine Jin, did not have the same type of personality nor did she have nearly as much knowledge as her sister on foreign affairs.


She seemed to have a light-hearted personality and pretty smart. She probably had her own ambition because she was said to be involved in Guang Xu's political dealings. She also tried to set her own people on government posts (some of them gave her bribes). She was also prettier than her sister and the empress in the photos (in my opinion) -- All of them looked pretty bad any way, but she looked OK at least.

With this in mind, I really wonder how did historians back then view her? Was she considered as a rebellious concubine by a lot of people just because she was forward thinking? Of course, she always had the love and backup of the Emperor; however, he cannot even take care of himself.


Well, the historian probably thinks she liked money too much. She took a lot of bribes and sold government posts to unworthy people. She got a famous pearl cape from the bribes. In the records I have read that she was talked to by Guang Xu emperor and yelled at by Cixi for this matter (the taking of bribes). I learned of her through movies and TV series, so I liked her very much and felt she was a good person. Then, I found out her corruption and the actions she took when she was in the emperor's favor. I was greatly disappointed! :no:

Also, I would like to speculate on some alternatives. Letís just pretend that Empress Cixi passed away during Emperor Guang Xuís coup, would Emperor Guang Xu have successfully reformed the whole country with Concubine Zhen as his great assistant? What if she had given birth to the Emperorís only son, and the Emperor had passed away at a young age. Then, would Concubine Zhen, now being Empress Dowager, have contributed to the revival and stability of the Qing Dynasty in the same way Empress Xiao Zhuang did? I surmise I am just asking if whether or not Concubine Zhen would be on par with Empress Xiao Zhuang if she had also been given the same opportunities since she definitely was as talented and as virtuous.


I doubt she would be as good as Xiao Zhuang. By her actions of taking bribes and setting unworthy people on government posts and even selling those government posts publicly, I think she could be as bad as Cixi or even worse. Cixi had experienced many harship in her youth and had some political smarts at least. Zheng Fei was quite spoiled. She might have the educations, but she did not really have the wisdom to guide the empire to a better future. Most likely, the empire would fall into worse chaos.

#12 may

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Posted 14 November 2007 - 04:37 PM

She seemed to have a light-hearted personality and pretty smart. She probably had her own ambition because she was said to be involved in Guang Xu's political dealings. She also tried to set her own people on government posts (some of them gave her bribes). She was also prettier than her sister and the empress in the photos (in my opinion) -- All of them looked pretty bad any way, but she looked OK at least.



Well, the historian probably thinks she liked money too much. She took a lot of bribes and sold government posts to unworthy people. She got a famous pearl cape from the bribes. In the records I have read that she was talked to by Guang Xu emperor and yelled at by Cixi for this matter (the taking of bribes). I learned of her through movies and TV series, so I liked her very much and felt she was a good person. Then, I found out her corruption and the actions she took when she was in the emperor's favor. I was greatly disappointed! :no:



I doubt she would be as good as Xiao Zhuang. By her actions of taking bribes and setting unworthy people on government posts and even selling those government posts publicly, I think she could be as bad as Cixi or even worse. Cixi had experienced many harship in her youth and had some political smarts at least. Zheng Fei was quite spoiled. She might have the educations, but she did not really have the wisdom to guide the empire to a better future. Most likely, the empire would fall into worse chaos.



The violence against women here is so bad and disgusting. There is no point in committing such vicious acts.

#13 liuxing

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 03:38 AM

She seemed to have a light-hearted personality and pretty smart. She probably had her own ambition because she was said to be involved in Guang Xu's political dealings. She also tried to set her own people on government posts (some of them gave her bribes). She was also prettier than her sister and the empress in the photos (in my opinion) -- All of them looked pretty bad any way, but she looked OK at least.

Is the photo available in the net? If yes, can u give me the url? I'm curious to see how she looks like.

#14 fireball

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 05:13 AM

Is the photo available in the net? If yes, can u give me the url? I'm curious to see how she looks like.


http://en.wikipedia...._Concubine_Zhen (Zhen Fei's picture - the drowned concubine).
http://image.baidu.c...&...7408&ln=107 (Her sister's younger picture - unbearably ugly).
http://en.wikipedia....l_Concubine_Jin (Her sister's picture when she was the Imperial Dowager Concubine - a bit better).
http://zh.wikipedia....i/ťöÜŤ%...§™Śźé (Guang Xu's empress - when younger - unbearably ugly also.)
http://en.wikipedia...._Dowager_Longyu (Guang Xu's empress - when she was the Dowager Longyu - much better looking.)

I saw another picture before, and that was a group of Qing palace women standing together. I think Zhen Fei was a lot younger and a lot skinnier and cuter at the time. Her sister's look was just unbearably ugly in that picture. The above picture was supposed to be when the sister was already the Imperial Dowager Concubine and a bit older. She (the sister) had a very rounded and flat face (IMO) when she was younger. According to some palace maidens, Jin Fei had a nick name called the "Moon Cake Face". However, I couldn't find it any where on the web. I thought I just saw it recently. Oh well.

Here are some pictures of the palace women of the last two Qing Emperors:

http://club.xilu.com...w-61884-38.html

The last two pictures were just palace women and not the wives or concubines of the last two Qing Emperors:

1. Jin Fei
2. LongYu Empress
3. Puyi's Empress' wedding picture
4. Puyi's Empress (same as 3)
5. Puyi's royal concubine Wen Xio (She was picked by Japanese for Puyi, I think.)
6. Puyi's royal concubine and (3rd wife) Tan Yulin (She was also picked by Japanese for Puyi, and later divorced him.)
7. A group of Palace women (I was going to use the term "palace maidens", but ... :yucky: )
8. Another palace woman (maiden? ... No way! woman... :yucky: )

There was one person commented on one of the above photo web site about these women. He said, "If I were the Qing Emperor, I would kill myself!" I have the same feeling after looking at the pictures of their women!!! :yucky: :icon15: :ph34r:

#15 Pattie

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 09:54 AM

(Her sister's younger picture - unbearably ugly).
(Her sister's picture when she was the Imperial Dowager Concubine - a bit better).
(Guang Xu's empress - when younger - unbearably ugly also.)
I think Zhen Fei was a lot younger and a lot skinnier and cuter at the time. Her sister's look was just unbearably ugly in that picture.
7. A group of Palace women (I was going to use the term "palace maidens", but ... :yucky: )
8. Another palace woman (maiden? ... No way! woman... :yucky: )

There was one person commented on one of the above photo web site about these women. He said, "If I were the Qing Emperor, I would kill myself!" I have the same feeling after looking at the pictures of their women!!! :yucky: :icon15: :ph34r:


Wow. In a thread about atrocities perpetrated against women, I'm shocked to see that some things never change.

There's isn't a person on this forum that would look at me and see anything but a middle-aged fat chick. Or worse, an American whose perceptions of China need to be corrected by Chinese people who moved to America...for?

Nothing in my posts, nothing in my manners would erase the image... forum members would look at my picture, perhaps label me as 'unbearably ugly', and there would be an end to it.

What a sin.
Cheers,
 

Pattie


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