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Wu Zhao’s Remarkable Aviary

Despite these fertile pre-conditions, the biological fact that Wu Zhao was a woman presented serious problems in her effort to assume the dragon throne. Even in these open times, the Confucian bureaucracy held great political sway just as patriarchal values, which held to the principle that “the male is venerated and the female is denigrated” (nan zun nu bei 男尊女卑), still exerted tremendous social influence.