An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History, Literature and Art

Emperor Han Andi 漢安帝 Liu Hu 劉祜

Dec 18, 2011 © Ulrich Theobald

Emperor Han Andi 漢安帝 (r. 106-125 CE), personal name Liu Hu 劉祜, courtesy name Fu 福, was an emperor of the Later Han dynasty 後漢 (25-220 CE). He was a grandson of Emperor Zhang 漢章帝 (r. 76-88 CE) and succeeded the child emperor Shang 漢殤帝 (r. 105-106 CE) to the throne.

When Emperor Shang died, Empress Dowager Deng 鄧太后, main consort of Emperor He 漢和帝 (r. 88-105 CE), and her brother, regent Deng Zhi 鄧騭, gave the commoner Liu Hu the title of Marquis of Chang'an 長安侯 before making him emperor. At that time he was only 13-sui old, so that the Empress Dowager officially took over regency for him.

In 115 CE Lady Yan 閻貴人 was made his empress. Emperor An's son Liu Bao 劉保 was in 120 CE named heir apparent.

In the next year the Empress Dowager died, and Emperor An decided to get rid of the Deng family, instigated by the slandering of his nurse Wang Sheng 王聖 who said that Deng Zhi had planned to overthrow him. Emperor An demoted all marquesses of the Deng family to commoners and forced Deng Zhi to commit suicide. This power vacuum was filled by the court eunuch clique who gained great influence on the emperor.

In 123 he bestowed his nurse the title of Lady Ye 野王君. Her daughter Bo Rong 伯榮 was sent out as an imperial inspector, and wherever she came, immense preparations were made to welcome her. For these tasks, the local people were obliged to deliver corvée labour to construct roads, bridges and to bring supplied for the entourage of the inspector. Some officials remonstrated against the influence of the two women on court affairs, but Emperor An refused any changes. Wang Sheng furthermore slandered the nurse of the heir apparent Liu Bao and managed his demotion of Prince of Jiyin 濟陰.

In 124 CE Emperor An travelled to Qufu 曲阜 to venerate Confucius.

A year later he suddenly died during an inspection tour. He was buried in the tomb mound Gongling 恭陵. His widow, Empress Yan 閻后, and her brother Yan Xian 閻顯 enthroned a child emperor, a prince called Liu Yi 劉懿, known as the "Minor Emperor" (shaodi 少帝).

Chen Quanli 陳全力, Hou Xinyi 侯欣一, ed. (1988). Diwang cidian 帝王辭典 (Xi'an: Shaanxi renmin jiaoyu chubanshe), 45.