How to rule 400,000,000 subjects

Narcissa

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Evidently you need a powerful headdress and some really remarkable shoes, all dripping with pearls.

From NPR article on Empress Dowager Cixi, once the most powerful woman in Asia.
Link: http://www.npr.org/2011/12/19/14379...ts-capture-chinas-empress-dowager?sc=fb&cc=fp

cixishoes_custom.jpg

cixihair_custom.jpg
 
neato! thanks narcissa! holy cow! how big do you reckon that pearl on her headdress is? 15mm or so? it must be a "known" pearl, huh?

- jodie -
 
whoa - those shoes weren't built for hiking were they!
 
Lol! Cixi taihou probably couldn't do a lot of walking anyway given her miniature bound feet (they appear as small as that girl's in the picture) and all those sedan-bearers at her disposal.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-...e_campaign=SmithMag&onsite_content=Presenting China's Last Empress Dowager

With regard to that pearl in her headress, it seems both that and the pearl placed on her corpse went missing. Stuff of urban legend indeed.

Wikipedia:
"In July 1928, Empress Dowager Cixi's tomb was occupied by warlord and Kuomintang general Sun Dianying and his army who methodically stripped the complex of its precious ornaments, then dynamited the entrance to the burial chamber, opened Empress Dowager Cixi's coffin, threw her corpse (said to have been found intact) on the floor, and stole all the jewels contained in the coffin, as well as the massive pearl that had been placed in Empress Dowager Cixi's mouth to protect her corpse from decomposing (in accordance with Chinese tradition). Urban legend states that the large pearl on Empress Dowager Cixi's crown was offered by Sun Dianying to Kuomintang leader Chiang Kai-shek and ended up as an ornament on the gala shoes of Chiang's wife, Soong May-ling, but this is unconfirmed."
 

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Time to revise an old post! I just found an article that pretty much focus on Cixi's pearls! Check out her 3,500 natural-pearl-cape!
https://marciamenter.org/2016/08/26/the-pearl-cape/

Thank you for revising the thread nnguye20. Did not see this before. I assume the pearls are more likely to be freshwater than saltwater. It would be wonderful to be able to see them today and find out more about them.
 
Thank you for revising the thread nnguye20. Did not see this before. I assume the pearls are more likely to be freshwater than saltwater. It would be wonderful to be able to see them today and find out more about them.
I would assume they are freshwater too, I am really curious about their quality (although that may also have dropped as they were buried/ stored in closed containers for years). However I also hope they were saltwater pearls. Judging from the empress's taste, wealth and international influence during her time, it is hard to believe that nobody thought about giving her some saltwater pearls.
 
Such an interesting article. Thank you for sharing. Glad to know her feet were not bound but instead, she was walking on a platform!
 
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