GODDESS OF THE PEONY
In China the peony is symbol for nobility, elegant beauty and wealth. We believe that good and noble deeds receive their reward and bad deeds their punishment. Zhaojun saved the lives of many thousand people by connecting the fate of two powerful nations through her personality. According to the Chinese, the soul of Zhaojun lives on as the Goddess of the Peony among us.
The Huns have always been determining Chinese history. Some writings profess that the first Chinese dynasty, the Xia (approximately 2,400-1,600 B.C.E.) was a Hunnic dynasty. Other sources assert that the Huns are descendants of the Xia dynasty.
During the rule of the Xia dynasty happened a great, cataclysmic flood lasting for years (approximately 1920 B.C.E.), which was restrained by Yu the Great. For a long time not even the existence of the Xia dynasty was proven, the remains of the flood and artefacts from the Xia period were found about ten years ago. So the mythology of the Xia dynasty is real.
The Huns are documented significantly during the period of the Han dynasty (206 B.C.E. – 220 AD). Pictured as nomadic peoples of the steppe they are seen undefeatable through their unique way of fighting, writing their history with blood and leaving heaps of dead behind... All right, our ancestors were fighters, but they also had a well-organized society and cities, they were a conquering and not a wandering steppe people. The Chinese government did not let Hunnic towns to be excavated for a long time, then it was resolved around the millennium and today more of the can be visited. Time to rectify history.
The great victory of Emperor Wu over the Huns is often recounted... but there are only a few words about the fact, how many Hunnic warriors fought in this glorious army of Han, from the divided Hunnic Empire... The Huns practically defeated themselves.
There was often inner strife between the Huns for the position of “ChanYu” (First After God).The Han Empire did everything for peace with the Huns, which was achieved through marriages and gifts. Hunnic warlords fought between themselves, often with Han aid. According to historic accounts mixed Hun-Han marriages were frequent not only among rulers but also among military leaders and high officials.
Wang Zhaojun (Wang Qiang) was born in 50 B.C.E. Her education was taken very seriously. She mastered music, Chinese chess, painting and calligraphy in such degree that in 36 B.C.E she was sent to the imperial court. The singular beauty of Zhaojun was coupled with a brilliant mind and a pronounced political talent, which made her one of the most important historical personages in Chinese history. (These days in China a fifty-part series show the life of Zhaojun...)
In the age of Zhaojun the emperor did not personally see all the ladies arriving in his harem, the court painter painted pictures of them and the emperor chose based on these paintings, who should come into his presence. But the court painter, Mao Yanshou painted the ladies according to the amount of money paid to him. Zhaojun cleverly did not pay him anything and did not get into this closed cage, but remained in the fringes of the harem.
In 33 B.C.E, when the Hunnic Empire was divided to a southern and northern part and these parts fought each other, the ruler of the southern empire, Hu Hanye Chanyu arrived to the emperor of the Han empire and asked for the hand of his daughter and the renewal of their alliance. Emperor Yuan thought to look for a “gift” for the Chanyu outside the harem instead of giving his daughter. But Zhaojun alone presented herself voluntarily!
After setting the date for the wedding the emperor saw Zhaojun for the first time and did everything to reverse his promise. But the agreement has already been concluded. The Chanyu was not only delighted but fell in love, and the emperor could do nothing but have the painter executed in his anger.
Zhaojun strove all her life for the unity and peace of the two empires. Thanks to her brilliant diplomatic skills peace reigned for 60 years, saving many lives. Peoples of the southern Hunnic and the Han empires mingled. Most of the Huns settled in the territories of the provinces of Jiangsu, Anhui, Zhejiang, Jiangxi and Fujian of today. The northern Huns were defeated and wandered westwards.
The Magyars hold themselves descendants of the Huns, but regarding the historic background the Han nation also included the Huns.
At the University of Sciences of Szeged a group led by Sándor Raskó examined the Hungarian DNA as part of the Human Genom Project. DNA probes from graves from the time of the Hungarian conquest of the Carpathian Basin have shown an Asian origin in 36%. Today the DNA of Hungarians show Asian markers only in 16%. After two thousand years our Asian background starts to disappear.
I read a lot about Hunnic and Han history, I was interested in my roots, so I decided to visit the grave of Wang Zhao Jun. The Chinese government created a memorial park where Han culture is also introduced.
In the park with my beautiful Han wife I felt as if we were the reincarnations of the great Hu Hanye Chanyu and Zhaojun.