The Tomb of Yangguifei

By Ruru ZhouUpdated Mar. 18, 2021

The Tang Emperor Xuanzong (685-762) had a harem, and his favorite concubine who was known for her beauty and talents was Yang Guifei (719-756) who is also known as Yang Yuhuan. Her tomb has long been a favorite tomb for Chinese to visit around Xian.Young women would go there to use a little of the clay from around the tomb because the clay was thought to make them more beautiful. Emperor Xuanzong was a powerful Tang Emperor. He took the woman for himself from his own son, but in the end, for some reason, he had her killed due to the demands of some soldiers and other people. She was said to be highly favored and very powerful, but somehow she was killed. Now, a wall is around the tomb to try to protect it. Inside the 1 Chinese mu or about .2 acre compound, people can see a hall for offering sacrifices, a tomb, and inscriptions left by people throughout history.


Emperor Xuanzong was a powerful emperor who ruled a long time. He is thought to have been a strong ruler at first. Then his wife died in the year 737. His son had married Yang Guifei, but then Emperor Xuanzong wanted the woman for his harem. So he arranged for her to become a Buddhist nun, gave another wife to his son, and then took her for his harem. She and her sisters were said to be extraordinarily beautiful. She apparently had a sense of humor and usually got a lot of gifts or service from those who met her. Her sisters were also favored and given positions in the dynasty. Along with them, one of her cousins named Yang Guozhong or Yang Zhao became a high official. That is when problems started.

It is said that he started spending his time in her company and perhaps that of other women and neglected his role as an emperor. Instead, Yang Guozhong, eunuchs, and generals grew in power and started to conflict with each other. A general named An Lushan and Yang Guozhong started to conflict with each other. Yang Guozhong asked his female cousins to start intervening for him in political matters. A Lushan rebelled, and for some reason, Emperor Xuanzong had her put to death though it didn't seem that she was a traitor against him. China Highlights can help you design a trip to this sight and other places.

Fee: 10 or 20 RMB or about 1.5 or 3 USD.

Hours: about 8 am to 5 pm.

Nearby Attractions: There are a lot of other tombs and sites you can see along the route of the Green Bus that leaves from the Bell Tower. It stops at a lot of sites in western Xian, and since buses are frequent, you can see a lot of other places.

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