Sun Yaoting (Traditional Chinese: 孫耀庭, Simplified Chinese: 孙耀庭, Hanyu Pinyin: Sūn Yàotíng, Wade-Giles: Sun Yao-t'ing; 29 September 1902 – 17 December 1996) was the last surviving imperial eunuch of Chinese history. Born into poverty, his family home was burned and fields stolen by a landlord in their village; his family hoped that by making Sun Yaoting into a eunuch, they would gain Imperial influence, and would be able to take revenge on the landlord. At the age of eight, Sun Yaoting was emasculated by his father at home[1] with a single razor cut, and without the use of anesthesia. The emperor he had hoped to serve, Puyi, was deposed months later.[2][3][4]

Sun Yaoting
Born(1902-09-29)29 September 1902
Tianjin, Jinghai County, Qing Empire
Died17 December 1996(1996-12-17) (aged 94)
Beijing, China
OccupationImperial court eunuch
Known forBeing the last surviving eunuch of Imperial China

Nonetheless, Sun Yaoting became a palace eunuch, and had become the attendant to the empress before the imperial family was expelled from the Forbidden City. He continued to serve in Manchukuo until the puppet state's collapse at the end of World War II.[5] His preserved genitals, considered a treasure by eunuchs, were discarded by his family during the Cultural Revolution, when it was considered taboo to own anything from the "old society."

The 1988 dramatic film Lai Shi, China's Last Eunuch is based on Sun Yaoting's life. His biography The Last Eunuch of China was published in 1998 and translated to English in 2008.


  1. ^ Chatterton, Jocelyn; Bultitude, Matthew. "Castration; The eunuchs of Qing dynasty China; A Medical and Historical Review". De Historia Urologie Europace. 15: 39–47. Retrieved 1 January 2015.
  2. ^ "Castration secrets of China's last eunuch revealed". ABC Online. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2009-03-16. Retrieved 2009-03-16.
  3. ^ Faison, Seth (1996-12-20). "The Death of the Last Emperor's Last Eunuch". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-03-16.
  4. ^ Yinghua, Jia (2008). The Last Eunuch of China-The Life of Sun Yaoting by Jia Yinghua. Sun Haichen (translator). China Intercontinental Press. p. 314. ISBN 978-7-5085-1407-9.
  5. ^ Graham-Harrison, Emma (16 March 2009). "China's last eunuch spills sex secrets". Reuters. Retrieved 14 December 2018.