Lead: Always reluctant to surrender power, Tzu-Hsi, Empress Dowager of China, the mother of Emperor Kuang-Hsu, in 1898 led a palace coup to defeat attempts at reform and modernization.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In 1852 Tzu-Hsi, a delivered his only son to the emperor of China. At the old man’s death in 1861 the widow assumed control of the nation as regent. When her son died 15 years later, quite possibly by her order, she installed her nephew as emperor and continued to rule behind the scenes. This was a ruthless and intimidating woman who had under her spell the young emperor his court who lived behind the walls of the Forbidden City that secret royal enclave in heart of Beijing.