(王皇后, personal name unknown) (died 21), formally Empress Xiaomu
(孝睦皇后, literally, the Filial and Congenial Empress) was an empress
during Xin Dynasty
Lady Wang married her husband, the eventual Xin emperor Wang Mang
while he was still a commoner (albeit a well-connected commoner, being the nephew of then-Han empress Empress Wang Zhengjun
). She was the daughter of Wang Xian (王咸), the Marquess of Yichun, who was the grandson of Han prime minister Wang Xin (王訢). (Her marriage to Wang Mang is evidence that at that time, the Chinese prohibition against endogamy
based on the same family name was not as strict as it later was.) She, taking Wang Mang's cue, was thrifty in her living, and on one occasion, when imperial messengers came to her house, her unassuming clothing and manner caused the imperial messengers to confuse her for a household servant, rather than the wife of a prominent marquess.
Lady Wang bore her husband at least five children—sons Wang Yu (王宇), Wang Huo (王獲), Wang An (王安), and Wang Lin (王臨), and a daughter (personal name unknown) who later became empress to Emperor Ping of Han
and was given the title of Princess Huanghuang
during Xin Dynasty.
Wang Mang was publicly known for his marital faithfulness, and he put on the appearance that he had no concubines
or other female liaisons in addition to his wife. However, that was not true, for Wang Mang had affairs with at least three servant women and, later, a... Read More