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Emperor of the Qin dynasty
Born (unknown)
Died 206 BC
Traditional Chinese 子嬰
Simplified Chinese 子婴
Pinyin Zǐyīng
Wade–Giles Tzu-ying
Other names

Ziying[notes 1] (old*Tsə-eng,[1] died January 206 BC) was the third and last emperor of the Qin dynasty. He ruled over a fragmented Qin Empire for 46 days from mid-October to early December in 207 BC.

Ziying was the only person within the Qin imperial court to defend and try to presuade Qin Er Shi against the wrongful executions of Meng Tian and Meng Yi. He lured Zhao Gao, the regent who assassinated Qin Er Shi, into a trap and killed him. Ziying later surrendered to Liu Bang, the leader of the first group of rebel forces to occupy Xianyang, the Qin capital. He was eventually killed along with his family by another rebel leader, Xiang Yu.


Ziying is mentioned in historical records as the son of Fusu, the eldest son of Qin Shi Huang. However, the historian Wang Liqun suggested that he was probably one of Qin Shi Huang's brothers. The Records of the Grand Historian does not specify Ziying's age and implies that he had at least two sons, whom he consulted. According to Wang Liqun's analysis, the maximum possible age of Ziying when he assassinated Zhao Gao was 19. Therefore, his sons would have probably been around the ages of 1–2, and hence it was not possible for him to consult them. It seems more likely that Ziying was an uncle of Qin Er Shi (and hence a brother of Qin Shi Huang) instead of Fusu's son. Some historians[who?] have also suggested that Ziying might be a son of Chengjiao, Qin Shi Huang's younger half-brother.


  1. Although he is often referred to as "Ying Ziying" according to modern Chinese naming conventions, it was not customary to combine family names with given names in ancient China.


  1. Baxter, William & al. "Baxter–Sagart Reconstruction of Old Chinese", pp. 6 & 148. 2011. Accessed 10 December 2013.
Third Emperor of Qin
Died: 206 BC
Regnal titles
Title last held by
Qin Shi Huang
King of Qin
207 BC
Titles in pretence
Preceded by — TITULAR —
Emperor of China
207 BC
Reason for succession failure:
Crowned with reduced title
Succeeded by
Emperor Yi of Chu