The times of the Empress Dowager Tz’u-Hsi are long finished.
She was a powerful and charismatic woman who unofficially but effectively controlled the Manchu Qing Dynasty in China for 47 years, from 1861 to her death in 1908.
Selected by the Xianfeng Emperor as an imperial concubine in her adolescence, she gave birth to his son, who became the Tongzhi Emperor upon Xianfeng’s death.
Cixi ousted a group of regents appointed by the late emperor and assumed regency over her young son with the Empress Dowager Ci’an. Cixi then consolidated control over the dynasty when, at the death of the Tongzhi Emperor, contrary to the rules of succession, she installed her nephew as the Guangxu Emperor in 1875. Although she refused to adopt Western models of government, she nonetheless supported the technological and military Self-Strengthening Movement.
Historians both in China and abroad have generally portrayed her as a despot and villain responsible for the fall of the Dynasty, while others have suggested that her opponents among the reformers succeeded in making her a scapegoat for problems beyond her control, that she stepped in to prevent disorder, that she was no more ruthless than other rulers, and that she was even an effective if reluctant reformer in the last years of her life.
With the cultural revolution, artists and painters like Lu Jian Jun Born in China in 1960 demonstrated an uncanny desire to depict the empress life the imperial wardrobe, jewelry , posture and lifestyle.
Today, in everyday China you do not need to go that far. Hotel Magazines, such the Peninsula’s, the Nihau equivalent to the American Town and Country, and the local Vogue are a full showcase of young Socialite Empresses, leaders of style, power and good taste.
Their appreciation for outstanding International and local Haute Couture like the talented fashion designer Guo Pei , and fine jewelry is obviously nestled within their ancestor’s refined taste for excellence and uniqueness.
Among those marvel women, a few names: Tipanan Srifuengfung , Shirieene Hajamaideen, Irene Hartoro Setiawan and Rany Moran . Philanthropist, entrepreneurs, expensive shoppers, home hostess, mothers and wives of charismatic and wealthy men, they have proven to us, that they can reign supreme.