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A Chinese Biographical Dictionary/Chao Ch'i (趙禥)

147 Chao Ch'i 趙禥. A.D. 1222-1274. A descendant in the twelfth generation from the fouuder of the Sung dynasty, and cousin of Chao Yün. He reigned as sixth Emperor of the Southern Sung dynasty from 1265 to 1274. In spite of strict training, he turned out a mere debauchee, who let his country go to ruin, and believed the fables of peace and prosperity told to him by Chia Ssǔ-tao. Chia was treated almost as an equal, and a threat to retire never failed to enable him to carry his point. All matters were left to his decision. He sold office, concealed the disasters of the war, and left the grievances of the people unredressed. Warnings of impending Mongol invasion were disregarded, until in 1268 siege was laid to Hsiang-yang in Hupeh. The heroic defence of 呂文煥 Lü Wên-huan delayed the collapse of the dynasty; however in 1273, disgusted at the feeble attempts of an apathetic Court to succour him, and disheartened by the fall of 樊城 Fan-ch'êng, owing to the use of artillery from Central Asia, that General capitulated. Even this disaster failed to shake the Emperor's confidence in Chia Ssǔ-tao, whose honours were continually increased. In 1269 written Mongol characters were introduced, and in 1271 the dynastic style 元 Yüan was formally adopted by the Mongol conquerors. Canonised as 度宗皇帝.