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Emperor Shunzhi - Aisin Gioro Fulin

1638 –1661



The Shunzhi Emperor was the third emperor of the Manchu Qing dynasty and the first Qing emperor to rule over China. He ruled from 1644 to 1661. 


A committee of Manchu princes chose him to succeed his father, the emperor Hong Taiji when he was five years old. The princes also appointed two co-regents: Dorgon (1612–1650), the 14th son of the Qing dynasty's founder Emperor Nurhaci, and Jirgalang (1599-1655) one of Nurhaci's nephews, both of whom were members of the Qing imperial clan.


The emperor Shunzhi was the name of this ruler's reign in Chinese. This title had equivalents in Manchu and Mongolian because the Qing imperial family was Manchu, and ruled over many Mongol tribes that helped the Qing to conquer China. 


From 1643 to 1650, political power lay mostly in the hands of Dorgon.  Under his leadership, the Manchu Empire conquered most of the territory of the fallen Ming dynasty (1368–1644) of China and chased Ming loyalist regimes deep into the southwestern provinces, establishing the basis of Manchu rule over China. This was despite highly unpopular policies such as the "hair cutting command" of 1645, which forced Qing subjects to shave their forehead, and braid their remaining hair into a queue resembling that of the Manchus. 


After Dorgon's death on the last day of 1650, the young Shunzhi Emperor started to rule personally. He tried, with mixed success, to fight corruption and to reduce the political influence of the Manchu nobility. 


The Shunzhi Emperor died at the age of 22 of smallpox, He was succeeded by his third son the emperor Kangxi.


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