Huang Youzao

A native of Putian, Fujian province who lived during the reign period of Ming emperor Shenzong (1573-1619). The daughter of a Vice-Prefect of Suzhou, she and her younger sister received instruction from a well-known, elderly Confucian scholar; at age fourteen she is said to have been completely conversant with the classics and histories and skilled in composing poetry. After her husband died at an early age, she devoted her energy to caring for her in-laws and managing a household in financial difficulties. She died at age thirty-nine of a heart ailment. Poems from Huang's Liuxu bian [Willows Floss Writings], as well as her biography, were included in the 'women authors' section of Qian Qianyi's late Ming anthology Liechao shiji [Anthology of Poetry from Dynastic China], and her collection was listed in the 'Yiwen zhi' of Ming shi [History of the Ming Dynasty]. Later her poems were selected in the 1773 anthology of women's poetry, Xiefang ji [Florilegium], among others.