The Jurchen war against the Song Dynasty in modern day China brought military developments such as gunpowder and naval battles. The war also resulted in the assassination of Jin Dynasty Emperor Hailing Wang today in 1161. Now WE know em

800px-Battleofzhuxiancounty

Hailing Wang (literally “Prince of Hailing”)was born February 24, 1122 of the Jin Dynasty. His birth name was Wányán Liàng

Hailing Wang was a son of Wanyon Woben and a grandson of Wanyon Aguda, the Jin Dynasty founder.

When Hailing Wang’s grandfather Aguda died September 19, 1123, his brother and successor Wuaimai initiated what is known as the Jurchen war against the Song Dynasty.

General Nianhan and chancellor Xiyin convinced Emperor Wuaimai that his young son Wányán Dǎn (rather than his nephew Wanyon Woben, who was the son of Jin founder Wanyon Aguda) should rule upon his death.

When Emperor Wuaimai died February 9, 1135, indeed his son Wanyan Dan became Emperor Xizong.

Hailing Wang became a marshal under his Uncle Xizong, even while feeling that his father Wanyon Woben was the rightful heir to the throne.

Then on January 9, 1150, Hailing Wang did what his father was unwilling to do, he murdered Emperor Xizong and other court officials in a coup d’état.

Emperor Hailing of Jin

As a usurper of the Jin throne, Emperor Hailing was suspicious of other members of the Jurchen aristocracy, and, immediately upon seizing power, started assassinating or executing potential rivals.

In a mass execution of several aristocratic families, the lineage of Emperor Wuaimai was exterminated, to secure the position of the lineage of Jin Dynasty founder and his grandfather Wanyon Aguda.

Emperor Hailing then set out to make his Jin Empire the Chinese Empire.

To further legitimize himself as a Chinese ruler, he lifted Emperor Wuaimai’s 1150 prohibition of wearing Chinese dress, and adopted an array of Chinese practices and institutions.

Emperor Hailing introduced palace examinations and set up the Imperial Academy in 1151.

In his pursuit to become the “real Chinese”, entitled to rule all over the Heavenly Kingdom, Emperor Hailing moved his court from the original Jurchen capital, Huining to Yanjing (present day Beijing) in 1153.

Then in 1157, he ordered the destruction of the former palaces in Huining.

In contrast to China’s Tang and Song traditions, which rarely imposed corporal punishment on the members of the society’s educated elites, Emperor Hailing continued the Jurchen tradition of floggings with a gusto, sometimes enjoying personally watching his officials and court members – including prime ministers, censors, and a princess – beaten with poles or whips.

However, Emperor Hailing’s attempts to conquer the Southern Song and unify China under his rule ended in failure.

His naval fleet was defeated by the Song at The Battle of Tangdao on November 16, 1161, and again at the Battle of Caishi on November 26–27, 1161 on the East China Sea.

As a result many of Emperor Hailing’s officers defected, resulting in his own assassination on December 15, 1161 in a military camp near the Yangtze River.

Hailing’s cousin Wanyan Wulu, who had led the rebellion against him, was proclaimed the new ruler. Wulu based his legitimacy on Confucian philosophy.

History looks back and notes that during the Jurchen war against the Song Dynasty, developments in naval warfare and gunpowder were introduced, forever changing the way the world engaged in military battle.

Then by the 13th century, the Mongol invasions on horseback ended both the Jin and Song dynasties.

Now WE know em

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