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Manchu imperial family

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The House of Aisin Gioro 愛新覺羅 (or 愛辛覺羅), the reigning family of All Under Heaven (modern China + Mongolia, with Korean, Ryukyu, etc. as tributary states) from 1644 to 1911 (清 Qing Dynasty), has the most extended Genealogy Records that survive (perhaps second only to Confucius' family) that fill up 8 large volumes in its 1936 edition. Collaboration is crucial, and coordination is needed.

Chinese names should be provided, in traditional characters, as well as the (romanized) Manchu/Mongolian names if known. It's open to discussion what display names should be. A tentative scheme is given below.

Reigning as a far minority over a vast empire, the Manchu imperial clan sought to consolidate their power through intermarriage with other powerful Manchu families. As a result, almost all important figures of the Qing period (registered under the Banner system) are related to the Aisin Gioro clan, often by more than one path.

A broader project would include all men under the Banner system (八旗), which consists of eight Manchu Banners, eight Chinese Banners, and eight Mongolian Banners. The division was not strictly ethnic, and there were even some, albeit very few, Koreans and Russians.

Lineages should, of course, be biological, until Geni has a way to handle adoptions within the same family, a common Chinese practice. Dates of birth and death are only given in terms of the corresponding Western year, with precise Chinese dates in the Timeline descriptions, until Geni is able to handle calendar conversions.

Rules for Display Name

  • In general, the format is title [space] given_name(birth_order). The birth_order is only for male issues from the same father, unlike Geni's buit-in birth order. The number is given in Chinese, but everyone can recognize at least the first three: 一二三. The last name "愛新覺羅 Aisin Gioro" shall be omitted from the display name.
  • Emperor: the temple name 廟號 and the (short) posthumous name 謚, plus his given name (e.g., 高宗純皇帝 弘曆). One is tempted to add the era name (e.g., 乾隆), which is the term most widely known, albeit erroneous to refer to the Emperor as a person.
  • Empress: the (short) posthumous name, plus her maiden name (e.g., 孝欽顯皇后 葉赫那拉氏 Yehe Nara). If exists, her title as Empress dowager (e.g., 慈禧) shall be appended. For lower consorts (and princesses), it's arguable if one should use her highest title while living (or while the Emperor was living), or her posthumous name, which tends to be rather obscure.
  • Prince: The highest two hereditary titles (親王 and 郡王) shall be displayed, with the posthumous name (if exists), even if he was deprived of the title later in life, or posthumously. For examples, 睿忠親王 多爾袞 Dorgon, 英親王 阿濟格 Ajige, 醇賢親王 奕譞, and 醇親王 載灃. It would be a much more formidable task to document all lower hereditary titles.
  • Duke, Earl, etc.: Hereditary titles of non-Aisin Gioro persons shall be at the adder's discretion.
  • Aisin Gioro daughters who are married off shall have 宗室(birth_order) as the display name, since the personal name is rarely known.

As a general principle, the person's actual achievements are precedent over imperial recognition / condemnation. Secondly, hereditary titles take precedence over non-hereditary titles for genealogical purposes.

Reference

  • 愛新覺羅宗譜, last update in 1936
  • Hummel, ed., Eminent Chinese of the Ch'ing Period 清代名人傳略, 1943

世袭罔替

The Manchus modeled their hereditary system on that of the Chinese, the Ming in particular, in which princedoms were bestowed to almost all sons of Emperors, and inherited indefinitely. Given that all Emperors (and their sons) had multiple concubines in addition to the Empress, the number of royalties with titles would grow exponentially, causing serious problems later in the dynasty. Recognizing that, the Manchus adopted a different system: the titles of princedom should degrade by one rank when passed down to (one member of) the next generation, until it reached the 5th or 6th rank.

  1. 和碩親王 hošoi cinwang
  2. 多羅郡王 doroi junwang
  3. 多羅貝勒 doroi beile
  4. 固山貝子 gusai beise
  5. 奉恩鎮國公
  6. 奉恩輔國公

The exceptions were granted to eight princes who had distinguished themselves in the founding of the Manchu Empire; their hereditary titles would pass down without degrade, known as 世袭罔替, and their lineages remained prominent until throughout the dynasty.

One more princedom "in perpetuity" was granted in mid-Qing, and three more in late Qing. These 12 princedoms are listed below, to help navigate through the vast web of the Aision Gioro clan.