The Story of Minglan Episode 11 Recap

Things are slowly building up in Story of Minglan Episode 11! How will the characters deal it?

Story of Minglan Episode 11 Recap Highlights:

  • Scholar Zhang proposes a topic that the rest of the city is talking about: who should be named heir?
  • Everyone starts to notice Minglan’s good points
  • Exams are coming and each household makes their preparations

How is everyone enjoy Story of Minglan so far? I hope you’re enjoying it as much as I do! Minglan is such a gem that no one appreciates (except for a few people). Well maybe there’s more, but I’m judging based on the visitors to my site XD.

What does Story of Minglan Episode 11 hold in store for us? Let’s find out!

Attending Academy Lessons Again

Now that Madam Kong has left, Sheng Hong feels like the girls at home have too much time on their hands.

Especially Molan, since she’s fond of literature and poems.

Old Madam Sheng says she’ll think about it and Sheng Hong excuses himself.

Then she tells Minglan to come out of hiding, knowing that she overheard the conversation.

Minglan reveals that she wants to go back to the academy too because it’s better that the girls get occupied by assignments.

Instead of competing over who has what.

But Old Madam Sheng teases Minglan, saying that women don’t need to be educated.


While Minglan is eager to counter argue.

Old Madam Sheng encourages her to share her thoughts.

Minglan believes reading books is not useless because if it was why do men pursue knowledge so passionately?

But in order to make sure women are easily fooled, the men tell the women that they don’t need to be educated.

And Old Madam Sheng beams in agreement.

Sharing that men who believe women shouldn’t be educated are short-sighted. Because why else would noble families want their daughters to learn how to read and write?

So then Minglan playfully questions why her grandma stalled on the decision to go back to school.

She wanted to prevent Madam Lin and Molan from getting too arrogant. If she let Sheng Hong do something each time it was proposed by Madam Lin, Madam Lin would get too arrogant.

So Old Madam Sheng wants them to know their place.

Heir based on birth or capability

All three Sheng daughters are back at the academy again and this time the men and women are separated by a screen.

The scholar announces that the exams are coming up soon and wants to know if they are ready.

So he randomly chooses a topic for discussion.

And chuckles to himself when he chooses a topic that is debated throughout the city.

Establish the eldest as the heir or the most worthy?

Gu Tingye comments that it’s very fitting. Considering the struggle between Prince Yan and Prince Yong for the throne.

Changbai shares his concerns that this topic may be taboo but the scholar deems it fine.

As long as the discussion is kept within these walls. And not shared outside.

So the debate begins.

Gu Tingye starts by saying the emperor has no sons so he must adopt from the royal blood line. There are two options: Prince Yan and Prince Yong.

Prince Yong is older and has no achievements but has worked hard to have lots of children.

Changfeng warns Gu Tingye to show some propriety as they have maidens in the classroom as well.

Gu Tingye continues and says Prince Yong should be chosen because he has more heirs.

And he believes it’s proper and right for the oldest to be heir.

Changbai agrees as well and uses a historical figure as an example.

Changfeng counters with another example of how someone who became an emperor despite being younger.

Molan jumps into the discussion as well. And so does Rulan.

While the scholar points out that Yuan Ruo and Minglan hasn’t discussed the topic yet.

Minglan doesn’t want to get involved but Changfeng pulls her in.

Because it starts sounding like a debate between the legitimate and concubine children of the Sheng family.

To Be Neutral

Yuan Ruo speaks up and covers Minglan saying that she doesn’t need to voice her thoughts because she’s not taking the exam.

But Gu Tingye disagrees.

The two of them silently whisper to each other with different thoughts.

Yuan Ruo thinks Minglan can’t handle this while Gu Tingye thinks she can.

Ah so Gu Tingye has been secretly observing her. Well in the past, he was the first to lose out to her. So he knows she has the skills.

The teacher tells Minglan to answer the question.

But Minglan wants clarification from Yuan Ruo and Gu Tingye first.

Which triggers another debate between Yuan Ruo and Gu Tingye. The latter believes that if a concubine son has the talent, he should be heir.

While Yuan Ruo believes that the talented son should support the oldest who should be heir.


The teacher steps in again and wants to hear Minglan’s answer. Because Gu Tingye and Yuan Ruo have spoken enough about their thoughts already.

It’s Minglan’s moment to shine!

Minglan tells everyone that her indecision is her decision. And explains it further.

One can easily disguise themselves to be virtuous.

Whether or not someone is older, younger, legitimate or concubine born, it’s blatantly obvious. And not the crucial point for debate.

If the one who is concubine born is truly virtuous, he would not want to ruin his household for his own ambition.

In other words, if the legitimate son secures his authority and can restrain the concubine born, so the latter does not dare to usurp, then the two can ensure the prosperity of the household.

A man of character must be loyal to the king and love his nation.

It’s better to be a simple subject because they are spared from meaningless fights.

Minglan’s Insight is Profound

Gu Tingye was right and rubs it in Yuan Ruo’s face.

He knew Minglan could handle it.

The teacher is pleased as well and allows his students to leave without homework today.

When Changbai reports to his father what Minglan said in class, he wonders when Minglan became this insightful.

Then believes that his mother raised Minglan so well.

Back at the academy, Minglan sees Buwei waiting for her and turns around.

Saying she forgot a book in class.

But Yuan Ruo surprises her from behind.

He just wants to talk to her because he has been worrying about the brushes he gave her.

Why did she regift them to her sisters?

Minglan asks him why doesn’t he understand?

And Yuan Ruo is baffled. So Minglan clarifies it some more.

Any time she receives something good, she must give it away.

Yuan Ruo is undeterred and promises to give good things to her secretly.

Without anyone noticing.

Minglan feels like he’s still not getting the point. So she tells him that she’s already content being acquainted with him.

And she doesn’t expect anything more.


She gives him a bow and then leaves.

While Yuan Ruo gazes after her, promising to protect her.

Oh Yuan Ruo, you are so naive. We all know who she ends up with but it’s just sad to see this puppy love fail.

Packing for the Imperial Exams

Days pass quickly and it’s almost time for the imperial exams. The exams that determine whether or not you can become an official.

Minglan and her two trusted servants are working on to make knee pads.

Danju notices that it’s been getting darker earlier lately and wonders if they can finish up tomorrow.

But Minglan refuses. She wants to get these two pairs of knee guards to her brothers before they leave for the exam.

The exams span over multiple days so the attendees have to stay there until exams are over.

Xiaotao on the left and Danju on the right

Danju notices that there are three knee pads they are making. And teases Minglan about it.

So Xiaotao speaks up and mentions that the third one is for Yuan Ruo.

Minglan states that she’s practicing so she made an extra one.

Danju hides a knowing smile.

The following day, Rulan sees her mother fussing over every little item packed into Changbai’s luggage for the exams.

Because once you enter the examination grounds, you’re on your own for a few days. Until the exams end.

Rulan tells her mother to stop fussing because her brother’s been preparing for ages.

Then Wang Ruofu’s head maid comes in with a gift from Minglan.

Knee pads to help protect the knees from the chill. It’s spring time now but the nights are still chilly.

Wang Ruofu accepts the gift while Rulan wonders if the other brother got one as well. And comments that Minglan is always neutral.

Never favoring one over the other.

Well yeah if she favored one, then she would bring a lot of trouble to herself.

Changfeng receives the other knee pads as well but scoffs at how ugly they look.

And his mother, Madam Lin, tosses them aside.

Yuan Ruo feels reciprocated

Madam Lin hopes her son will take first place and Changfeng reassures her that he will do well.

Because the teacher complemented his essays before.

While all other courtyards are rushing to pack things for the upcoming exam, Minglan is taking it easy.

Working on her embroidery.

Then Danju comes over with a gift from Yuan Ruo, various brushes that she can select from.

When she tells Danju and Xiaotao to thank Buwei (Yuan Ruo’s close servant) for her, she sneaks her knee pads into the container that will be returned to him.

That night Yuan Ruo asks Buwei if Minglan left any word for him.

Buwei shakes his head. However, he comments that there is an extra pair of knee pads in the container he brought back.

And Yuan Ruo takes it out. It has a name sewed to it but it’s off (probably because Minglan doesn’t want it to be too obvious).

Aww look at that goofy smile.

He believes that Minglan has feelings for him.

Imperial Exams

Each family sends off their sons to the examination grounds with fanfare.

Hoping that each one of them will bring them honor and glory.

Moland, Rulan and Minglan express their best wishes to both Changbai and Changfeng.

And the two respective mothers send them off.

When Minglan returns home, she notices Gu Tingye is walking to the examination site on foot. And doesn’t have a carriage.

I wonder if she knows about the conflict in his household?


The exams have begun and they will last for three days.

Back at the Sheng household, Wang Ruofu is bowing to deities for good luck.

So ensure her son passes.

Sheng Hong encounters her and brushes it off but once she leaves, he prays as well.

Hoping that his sons can bring honor and glory to the household.

Meanwhile, at the Gu household, Marquis Gu and his wife are eating breakfast together.

Madam Gu reveals that she made a fasting pledge so Gu Tingye could pass successfully.

And her husband complains that she spoils him too much.

But she was the woman who told young Gu Tingyu false rumors? Hmm, is she also not what she seems? Couldn’t see her face in the flashback, but heard her voice.


At Nanny Chang’s place, Nanny Chang sees Manniang get ready to leave for the day and eyes her suspiciously.

While she teaches Gu Tingye’s son and daughter how to feed the chickens.

Changge on the left, Gu Tingye’s son

Nanny Chang tells Manniang to stay at home despite her intent to go pray at the temple.

Manniang reluctantly heads back to her room but puts on a hateful look when Nanny Chang is turned away.

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I love how Minglan’s insight and reasoning was able to silence everyone else.

Yuan Ruo didn’t believe she could do it but Gu Tingye did. He’s like a silent male lead lingering in the background, noticing all the little small things about the female lead.

Maybe because he’s seen her skills in the past? When she beat him at arrow toss.

Well, it’s very cute to see Yuan Ruo pursuing Minglan.

On another note. After living with Old Madam Sheng for so long, I think Minglan has picked up her grandma’s habits.

Pretending to not care about someone when she actually does. When Minglan asked her servant before about which sister is easier to get along with, I would say it’s Rulan.

Because despite her grumblings, Rulan has a good heart. Just like her mother. Wang Ruofu easily accepted Minglan’s gift while Madam Lin and her son threw it aside.

Judging the gift by its appearance and not the gift giver’s sincerity. Well probably Minglan did it to be neutral but she still put effort into it.

Manniang is super suspicious and Nanny Chang continues to watch her. It’s just too bad, Gu Tingye is under Manniang’s spell. She will eventually expose her true colors though.

Just have to be patient.

What were your thoughts on Story of Minglan Episode 11? Leave a comment below!

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3 years ago

Distract and deflect its Minglan’s go to strategy for getting out of being the center of attention. I also love that Tingye had faith in her even when he didn’t know her that well. 2 episodes in one day I’m psyched!

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