Wu Zhao Chapter Summary

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1. How did Wu Zhao manage to rise to such a high position in an empire that favored Confucian Values? Wu Zhao was an extraordinary woman of many talents. However, Wu Zhao’s intelligence and charisma were not enough to help her attain the throne. As the book states “Only with the assistance of Propagandists, rehoriticians, ideologies and strong-arms of different persuasions. All working, at sometimes cross purposes, to help her gain political legitimacy “. [1]. Wu Zhao was prepared to get rid of her enemies in any way necessary. Initially. she plotted against her husband’s Consort, Empress Wang, and implicated her in plots against, both she and the empire. She then systematically eliminated and all threats to her power. When her husband, the Emperor became sick, Wu became the power behind the throne. Once Emperor, Wu Zhao manipulated and used the religions at her disposal, Buddhism and Daoism, to solidify her role as Empress. She used Buddhist ideals as a way mitigate Confucian …show more content…

Omens occurring at timely and propitious moments reiterated claims of Heavenly approval for her position as emperor and to bolster her claims to power. The discovery of relics in the Guangzhou quarter in 677, the emergence of Mount Felicity in 686, the construction of the bright hall, and the stone discovered in the Luo River in 688, were all of these were carefully utilized to show that WU Zhao fulfilled omens prophesied in the Great Cloud Sutra. Posthumously raising the status of her parents helped to make Wu Zhao appear more suited to her role, as did her invention new genealogy for her parents. In claiming descent from the youngest son of King Ping, from the Zhou dynasty, she strengthened her ties with that dynasty. She also built imperial temples for her Wu ancestors. All of these things were designed to prove her status and fitness as

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