||Huan-Wei-Guan in Northern Sung Dynasty, which can be traced back to the sixteen-guards in Southern Government Office of the Fu-Bing System in early Tang Dynasty, was so significant that it had once been known as “the ruler’s assistant, the country’s mainstay”. However, along with the development of political and military condition in Tang Dynasty, the sixteen-guards in Southern Government Office gradually lose its original function and became nominal. Till late Tang Dynasty, it even exited in name only.
Because Huan-Wei-Guan in Northern Sung Dynasty, which adopted the system of Tang Dynasty, had the feature of “no organization, no particular job but considerable profit”, its sources ranged from royal clan and military ministers to relatives of the ruler, rulers or ministers from surrendered countries and savages, etc. Secondly, the political and military condition that Sung Dynasty confronted during its establishment process had deeply influenced its political and governmental system. Take Huan-Wei-Guan for example; in order to consolidate the power of authority and to avert the rebellions happened in previous dynasties, rulers in Northern Sung Dynasty set the Huan-Wei-Guan system with the motivations of giving preference, rewarding or dominating; each decision seems to have its political purpose.
Further more, through bestowing higher official positions to retired officials or important ministers who had passed away, Huan-Wei-Guan functioned as “treatment with high respect”, which successfully stabled ministers and officials’ working emotions and reinforced their loyalty to the Court. Therefore, the function of Huan-Wei-Guan might have been the main reason why Northern Sung Dynasty could prevent political interference from the ruler’s relatives and calamity to the country brought by the military ministers more successfully than previous dynasties. Due to its remarkable effectiveness to the steadiness of the political situation, Huan-Wei-Guan had remained its existence unchanged throughout Northern Sung Dynasty.
Among the huge and diverse official systems in Northern Sung Dynasty, Huan-Wei-Guan seems to be a position which doesn’t attract much attention. Even though, this thesis still takes it as the subject of the study, and has a lot of new discoveries about its function and position among the official systems in Northern Sung Dynasty, and also proves its value and meaning. Therefore, this thesis should have some contribution to the development of new topics for studies of Sung Dynasty.