Princess TaiPing is one representative character with all-powerful in the political situation in the early Tang Dynasty. Since her mother, father and two brothers consecutively ascended the throne as emperors, her glory and status was lasting more than twenty years and that is unique phenomenon in history. Additionally, the name of Princess TaiPing is often mentioned in the same breath as her mother, Empress Wu (Wu Zetian), and both of them are representative women who involve in politics deeply in the early Tang Dynasty. Nowadays, the impression of Princess TaiPing mostly comes from the interpretation of the drama. However, where does the dramatic image of Princess TaiPing come from? And how different is Princess TaiPing in dramatic image from reality？The methodology of this research is to analyze the historical memory and the historical writing of Princess TaiPing, and to compare and discuss the interrelation among this text, the writer and his era. Whereby, the process of modeling Princess TaiPing to be who we have known currently is more likely to be understood.
The Tang Dynasty is an era to produce Princess TaiPing. The narrative of Princess TaiPing does not provide the scholars in the Tang Dynasty the virtual experience but also keeps their fresh memory still. Therefore, the scholars in the Tang Dynasty leave a great variety and diversity of information about Princess TaiPing; some of them are lasting till present and some are ignored. Compared to the scholars in the Tang Dynasty who wrote the narrative by memory, the scholars in the Song Dynasty wrote it by the historical writing with their own development, to re-model the historical memory about Princess TaiPing. Besides, under the unique social value and academic background, the scholars in the Song Dynasty even make direct or indirect evaluations on the various political performance of Princess TaiPing, based on moral standard.
Some of narratives written by the scholars in the Tang Dynasty, comfort to the expectation of the history editors, are therefore included into the history record for generations. However, others are deliberately ignored as to be forgotten gradually. The historical memory of the posterity is mainly from two Books of Tang Dynasty, one is edited in the Five Dynasty and another is edited in the Northern Song Dynasty, and also from Comprehensive Mirror for Aid in Government. The narrative of Princess TaiPing among these three books seems quite similar, however, the image of Princess TaiPing presents on these three books are certainly different after comparison on the context of writer’s arrangement. As a result, further to analyze the historical writing methods and several impact factors, such as writers himself and writing era, it is certain to have better understanding on the main part of the historical memory about Princess TaiPing modeled nowadays.