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The Extravagant Lifestyle of Empress Dowager Cixi

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#1 WuXiaHer0


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Posted 14 December 2009 - 09:55 AM

I've came across a very interesting article regarding Cixi's lifestyle.

She was very particular about beauty.Every morning she would first drink a bowl of human milk and then eat a silver spoon of pearl powder made from high quality pearls.Also,she would first use a jade stick,which had both ends decorated in gold and wood,to massage her face with rice powder and applied rouge made from rose extract.An eunuch would comb her head and tell stories at the same time to relieve boredom.He would also dye Cixi's hair every 10 days so that there were no white hairs on her head.

When Cixi ate,she was very fussy.Dishes served for breakfast must not be less than 100.

Before she slept,she would soak her feet in water with medicine sent by the imperial doctor in accordance with the changes in weather and her health.In addition to that,there were two palace women to wash and massage her feet.Also,she would have egg white and silk applied to her face and her finger nails would be soaked and trimmed.

Washing at night was also a big fuss.There were four palace women to attend to her bath and another four to change the towels and water.In order to have a bath,100 towels were prepared.

Cixi also liked to fuss over her guanfang 官房 (imperial toilet).The palace women would run around getting ready while the eunuchs would wrap the chamber pot with embroidered cloth and carry it over their heads to just outside the Empress Dowager's sleeping quarters where it would be taken to a clean room for Cixi to use.After the Empress Dowager was done with her "business",the palace women would carry the chamber pot out and give it to the eunuchs who would wrap it up and carry it out.After washing,they would replace the pinewood sawdust and make sure that it was ready for the Empress Dowager to use whenever needed.

According to records,Cixi's guanfang was made from sandalwood and on the outside was carved a large gecko.The gecko mouth was slightly opened to hold the toilet paper.Along the gecko's back was a lid which could be opened to enable the user to sit and use it.In it was sprinkled some pinewood sawdust to mask the unpleasant odour.

Her tomb was robbed and her body was thrown aside.The body was found intact on the floor.

Here's a picture of her corpse.
WARNING...This picture is not for the faint of heart.


Edited by WuXiaHer0, 15 December 2009 - 01:04 AM.

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#2 Ting


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Posted 06 February 2011 - 12:22 AM

I like yr it very much , do u think that is her own fault that why after dead she being rob ?

#3 leeklol


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Posted 19 March 2011 - 04:10 AM

What an extravagant lifestyle! What a great waste of everything. I am glad such things do not happen in modern times.

#4 Yizheng


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Posted 21 March 2011 - 11:53 PM

What an extravagant lifestyle! What a great waste of everything. I am glad such things do not happen in modern times.

Such things do happen in modern times - I mean extravagant lifestyles and great waste of public money.
As for Cixi, yes, one can call it extravagant, but let us not forget that part of this extravagance was the prescribed life of the palace at that time, its rules and rituals that called for such and such number of this and that, dishes on the table, maids and so on. True, the Qing greatly trimmed back all the palace extravagance at first, compared to late Ming, but it gradually grew again over the years.
Part of Cixi's extravagance was not just her own caprice but also the constant game of the people around her, playing up to her weaknesses with flattery and 'gifts' in order to strengthen their own positions, get some power, promote their interests.
There is no denying that Cixi lived a lavish lifestyle, but it has been somewhat exaggerated I think, for the purposes of good propaganda following the dynasty's fall, to show everyone what a wasteful parasitic dynasty it was sucking the common people's blood - as if later regimes did not suck the common people's blood, and their leaders to not indulge in luxury.

#5 muaNXQ


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Posted 20 June 2011 - 10:47 PM

she is horrible. she even used the navy funds for her own expenses.The navy's defeat in the sino-Japanese war was partially caused by this. and i feel that she had caused the fall of her empire because of her "crazy" lifestyle.

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