Emperor Yingzong of Song

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Emperor Yingzong of Song
Yingzong Song.jpg
Palace portrait on a hanging scroll, kept in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, Taiwan
Emperor of the Song dynasty
Reign 1 May 1063 - 25 January 1067
Coronation 1 May 1063
Predecessor Emperor Renzong
Successor Emperor Shenzong
Born Zhao Zongshi (1036–1062)
Zhao Shu (1062–1067)[a]
(1032-02-16)16 February 1032[b]
Died 25 January 1067(1067-01-25) (aged 34)
Era dates
Zhiping (治平; 1064-1067)
Posthumous name
Tiqian Yingli Longgong Shengde Xianwen Suwu Ruisheng Xuanxiao Huangdi
(體乾應歷隆功盛德憲文肅武睿聖宣孝皇帝) (awarded in 1083)
Temple name
Yingzong (英宗)
House House of Zhao
Father Zhao Yunrang
Mother Lady Ren
Emperor Yingzong of Song
Chinese 宋英宗
Literal meaning "Excellent Ancestor of the Song"
Zhao Shu
Traditional Chinese 趙曙
Simplified Chinese 赵曙
Zhao Zongshi
Traditional Chinese 趙宗實
Simplified Chinese 赵宗实

Emperor Yingzong of Song (16 February 1032 – 25 January 1067), personal name Zhao Shu, was the fifth emperor of the Song dynasty in China. His original personal name was Zhao Zongshi but it was changed to "Zhao Shu" in 1062 by imperial decree, he reigned from 1063 to his death in 1067. He was succeeded by his eldest son, Emperor Shenzong.

In 1055, Emperor Yingzong's predecessor, Emperor Renzong, became critically ill and started to worry about having no successor because his sons all died prematurely. Acting on the advice of his ministers, Emperor Renzong agreed to bring two of his younger male relatives into his palace. One of them was the future Emperor Yingzong, who was eventually chosen and designated as the Crown Prince. Emperor Yingzong was the 13th son of Zhao Yunrang (趙允讓; 995–1059), who was a first cousin of Emperor Renzong and was posthumously known as "Prince Anyi of Pu" (濮安懿王). Emperor Yingzong's grandfather, Zhao Yuanfen (趙元份; 969–1005), was a younger brother of Emperor Renzong's father, Emperor Zhenzong, and was posthumously known as "Prince Gongjing of Shang" (商恭靖王). Emperor Yingzong's mother, whose maiden family name was Ren (任), was the concubine of Zhao Yunrang, she held the title "Xianjun[c] of Xianyou" (仙遊縣君).

Emperor Yingzong's empress consort was Empress Gao, as Emperor Yingzong was sickly, Emperor Renzong's widow, Empress Dowager Cao, served as his regent.

Emperor Yingzong's reign is known for controversy over the correct rituals to be performed by the emperor for his father. Emperor Yingzong had been adopted by Emperor Renzong, so Emperor Renzong was nominally Emperor Yingzong's father. However, biologically, Zhao Yunrang was Emperor Yingzong's father, some officials suggested that Emperor Yingzong honour his biological father with the title "Imperial Uncle", but the emperor agreed with Ouyang Xiu and others and decided to honour his biological father as his parent. This was not only an early sign of more conflict during Emperor Xiaozong's reign but also the Great Rites Controversy of the Ming dynasty.




Title Name Born Died Parents Issue Notes
Empress Xuanren
Lady Gao
1032 1093 Gao Zunfu, Prince of Chu
Lady Cao, Madame of Chu
(1048) 1. Shenzong
(1050) 2. Prince Rong of Wu
(1051) 2. Princess of Bao'an
(1051) 3. Princess of Shoukang
3. Prince of Run
(1056) 4. Prince Duanxian of Yi
Married Yingzong in 1046
1065: Empress
1067: Empress Dowager
1085: Grand Empress Dowager
1093: Empress Xuanren

Imperial Concubines[edit]

Title Name Born Died Issue Notes
Lady Zhang
unknown 1111 none
Lady of Bright Deportment
Lady Bao
unknown 1102 none
Lady of Cultivated Countenance
Lady Zhang
1053 1130 none



# Title Name Born Died Mother Notes
1 Shenzong
Zhongzhen, Xu
仲针, 顼
25 May 1048 1 Apr 1085 Empress Xuanren 1067: Emperor
1085: Shenzong
2 Prince Rong of Wu
Zhongjiu, Hao
仲糺, 颢
1050 1096
3 Prince of Run
unknown unknown Died young
4 Prince Duanxian of Yi
Zhongke, Yun
仲恪, 頵
1056 1088


# Title Name Born Died Mother Spouses Issue Notes
1 Princess of Dening
unknown unknown 1085 unknown
2 Princess of Bao'an
unknown 1051 1080 Empress Xuanren
3 Princess of Shoukang
unknown 1051 1123
4 Princess of Shu
unknown unknown unknown unknown


See also[edit]

  1. Chinese emperors family tree (middle)
  2. List of emperors of the Song dynasty
  3. Architecture of the Song dynasty
  4. Culture of the Song dynasty
  5. Economy of the Song dynasty
  6. History of the Song dynasty
  7. Society of the Song dynasty
  8. Technology of the Song dynasty


  1. ^ Had his name changed to "Zhao Shu" in 1062 when he was officially designated as the Crown Prince. This name became his official name when he ascended the throne in the following year.
  2. ^ Dates given here are in the Julian calendar not the proleptic Gregorian calendar.
  3. ^ Xianjun was a title literally meaning "first lady of the county," which was given to the wives of a certain category of Chinese civil servants in imperial times.


Emperor Yingzong of Song
Born: 16 February 1032 Died: 25 January 1067
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Emperor Renzong
Emperor of the Song Dynasty
Succeeded by
Emperor Shenzong