During his reign Qin Shi Huang made five inspection trips around the country. During the last trip with his second son Huhai in 210 BC, Qin Shi Huang died suddenly at Shaqiu prefecture. Huhai, under the advice of two high officials - the Imperial Secretariat Li Si and the chief eunuch Zhao Gao, forged and altered Emperor's will. The faked decree ordered Qin Shi Huang's first son, the heir Fusu, to commit suicide, instead naming Huhai as the next emperor. The decree also stripped the command of troops from Marshal Meng Tian - a faithful supporter of Fusu - and sentenced Meng's family to death. Zhao Gao step by step seized the power of Huhai, effectively making Huhai a puppet emperor
A Fatuous Emperor After becoming the emperor, Hu Hai immediately began to eliminate those who opposed him and threatened the throne. Abetted by Zhao Gao, he mercilessly slaughtered his brothers and sisters in Xianyang, and killed many ministers and generals in his court for no reason. Zhao Gao seized the opportunity and planted his relatives and faithful associates in the court. Hu Hai remained defenseless to the plotting of Zhao Gao.
At the same time, Hu Hai indulged in the super luxurious life. In his opinion, the emperor needed do nothing but enjoy life. He forged a large number of peasants from around the country to build Epang Palace and the mausoleum in Lishan Mountain. He ordered 50,000 soldiers to defend the capital and all parts of the country were forced ceaselessly to provide provisions to the capital. Those who transported the provisions were forbidden from taking the food within 300 li (93 miles) around Xianyang City. All peasants had to bear heavier taxation besides providing unpaid hard labor over the years. His cruel rule resulted in the break out of the Uprising of Chen Sheng and Wu Guang, the first large-scale peasant uprising in Chinese history.
Death In order to thoroughly take over the national power, Zhao Gao advised Hu Hai to stay in the harem and hear the daily government work reports. He certainly agreed for he was more fond of playing than working. Thereupon, every big and small governmental affair was judged by Zhao Gao. Hu Hai had already lost the imperial power.
Zhao Gao had long coveted the throne for a long time. One day, he found his chance had come. He ordered his son-in-law Yan Le to lead about 1,000 people, who made a false claim of seizing a thief and rushed into Hu Hai's palace. Hu Hai was forced to cut his own throat and was entombed with civilian status.
Hu Hai Hu Hai (230BC-207BC) was the Second Emperor of Qin, and was recorded to have committed suicide in 207 BC (the third year of the Second Emperor) at the threat of the powerful official Zhao Gao. He was buried in the land of Zhoudu State (Zhoudi of Qin) as a common person, at the southern terrace of Qujiangchi Village of Qujiang Township of Yantao District, Xian City. It is commonly called “Huhai Tomb”. The Tomb of Huhai, Second Emperor of Qin is located on a slope, with tranquil environment, different from emperors’ magnificent mausoleums since Qin and Han.
The tomb area covers an area of over 20 mu. In the due south is a mountain gate of three room depths in the style of red gate, red columns and round ridge roof. In the middle of the lintel is hung a piece of big tablet of black color and golden characters, inscribed “秦二世皇帝陵园”. Walking upward through the mountain gate, one can find a hard mountain temple hall of Qin architectural style. Within the hall of about 184 square meters, there is a sculpture group depicting “calling deer as horse”. The colored stereo pictures of five people, Hu Hai, Zhao Gao, Ziying and Yanle, were vividly presented.
Behind the hall is Hu Hai’s tomb, which is built of earth and takes the round shape. The grave mound has a diameter of 25 m, a height of 5 m. In the north of the tomb there is a stone tablet, which is of 3 m high, 0.98 m wide and 0.28 m thick. In the back side of the tablet is inscribed six lishu characters, “秦二世皇帝陵”, which was erected by Shanxi Governor Bi Ruan in the 41st year of Emperor Qianlong of Qing (1776). On the back of the tablet is carved in intaglio Ye Yi Shuo, written by Scholar Zhou Xinming in the tenth year of Emperor Jiaqing. It was listed into the first key provincial cultural heritage protection units by the Shaanxi People’s Commission on August 6, 1956. Now it has been developed into the Second Emperor of Qin Tomb Ruins Park.
Transportation: The Second Emperor of Qin Tomb Ruins Park is located in the south of Qujiangchi Park, that is, about 500 m south to the Qujiang New District Management Commission (Han Yao). It can be reached by taking No. 22, 224, 212 and 504 buses and getting off at Qujiangchi Tiaodu Station.