Cai Yan

(c. 170 - c. 249)

The daughter of an esteemed scholar and statesman, Cai Yan was married at the age of sixteen and widowed soon after the wedding. Her father was executed following the death of the military dictator Dong Zhuo in 192. Around the same time, Cai was abducted by mercenaries and ended up in the custody of a nomadic Southern Xiongnu band in either Shanxi or Inner Mongolia. During the twelve years of her captivity, she was married to a Xiongnu chieftain, with whom she had two children. Around 208 the new military dictator Cao Cao, who had admired her father, paid a ransom for her return.

Issues Contributed