Hi Alice – I've just been to Chen Yuanyuan's grave at Majia Zhai in Guizhou for a short article I'm writing about her... "故先妣吴门聂氏之墓位席" best wishesdavid leffman
Hi David. Thank for for leaving a comment here! That's so great - I would love to read your article. My work-in-progress is a historical novel about Chen Yuanyuan, Liu Rushi 柳如是 and Li Xiangjun 李香君. They all had dramatic lives! I've finished the first draft and am now doing the re-writing and editing :)
Great, will send a link when the article is out. The locals have a lot of information about her life after she escaped the Manchu reconquest of Yunnan. Hope the writing goes well... is Blacksmith publishing?
Thanks! I look forward to reading it.Well, I dealt with that part in my novel "The Green Phoenix". The two most popular folklore versions are: (1) she hanged herself or drowned in the lotus pond of Anfu Garden; (2) she went into hiding in some Taoist nunnery. In "The Green Phoenix", she hanged herself after Wu Yingxiong (Wu Sangui's grandson) lost Yunnan to the Manchus, by which time Wu Sangui had already died in his sickbed. My work-in-progress focuses on Chen Yuanyuan's early life when she was a courtesan, and on her less-than-romantic relationship with Wu Sangui, who was never her true love.As for the publisher, it will most likely be Earnshaw Books, who published "The Green Phoenix".
Oops, in (2), it should be Wu Shifan (Wu Sangui's grandson) who lost Yunnan. (Wu Yingxiong was Wu Sangui's son who was held as a hostage at the Qing court and was killed.)
He he, no problem... different sources often confuse his sons and grandsons too. I photographed the list of descendants on both Chen and Wu’s tomb tablets so I could be sure who was who.
David, I just have a query about the grave inscription. 吳門聶氏 - Chen Yuanyuan's original surname was 沅. I would've have thought the inscription should be 吳門沅氏! Are you sure that was her grave?
I meant to write: Chen's original surname was 邢. Full name: 邢畹芬 or 邢沅.
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