THE PAINTINGS OF ANNIE WONG LEUNG KIT WAH
  PAINTINGS - BEAUTIES IN HISTORY & STORIES



Miao Yu

In Cao Xueqin "Dream of the Red Chamber", Miao Yu, who was sent to a temple to be a Buddhist nun at an early age. She was the chief daughter of a high official in Suzhou. Her parents died when she was eighteen. When the chief nun passed away, she left the nunnery to live at the Long Cui Convent within the grounds of the Da Guan Yuan of the Jia family.

Well-versed in literature and attractive in spite of her Buddhist deportment and attire, Miao Yu was described as having "the elegance of an orchid and the talent of the immortal". Committed to live as a nun, she suppressed her desires for love and tenderness and kept to her unrealistic aspirations. Unable to express her true feelings, her behaviour was sometimes seen as eccentric.

She was secretly in love with Baoyu, the heir to the Jia family. In one revealing incident, when Baoyu and Baochai were brewing tea, she purposely poured tea into her own green jade cup to serve Baoyu. Miao Yu often questioned why should she have to live a life of involuntary celibacy. When admiring the beautiful red plum blossoms that cover the hillside next to her convent, readers cannot help but pitying Miao Yu beauty as well as her concealed passion. Like most of the other women in the Da Guan Yuan, Miao Yu life also comes to a tragic end.

 

 

MIAO YU

設色紙本
INK & COLOUR
ON PAPER

184.5 X 95 cm , 1996