Huang's father was Huang Chengyan, a prominent Later Han scholar. Huang Chengyan had a wife, who was the sister of Liu Biao's wife Lady Cai 蔡氏 and his naval commander Cai Mao 蔡瑁. Possibly she was Huang's mother.
At one point during her life her father persuaded Zhuge Liang to take her by saying that although she was very ugly she had a wit to match his. About this event the Sanguo zhi says the following:
- 黃承彥... ...謂諸葛孔明曰：
- Huang Chengyan... ...once told Zhuge Kongming:
- “I heard you're looking to select a wife;
- I possess an ugly looking daughter,
- she has a yellow face with a dark complexion,
- but she possesses talent adequately capable of matching yours.”
- Kongming agreed,
- and so [Huang Chengyan] sent her over at once.
- The people of that time considered this [event] to be an amusing story,
- and in the village a proverb arose out of this:
- “Do not choose a wife as Kongming did,
- and end up with Ah Cheng's ugly daughter.”
- Huang Chengyan
- mother's name unknown (possibly sister of Cai Mao and Lady Cai).
- A memorial for Lady Huang exists in her supposed hometown of Huangjiawan 黄家湾, in Yao'an village 姚庵村, which lay outside Xiangyang in Hubei province.
Fact vs. Fiction
- ... the name of Huang Chengyan's daughter is not known. In fiction she is often called Yue Ying 月英, or Huang Yueying 黃月英, but these names have no historical basis.
- ...it is not known who gave birth to Zhuge Liang's son Zhuge Zhan.
- Chen Shou, Sanguo zhi, Book of Shu 05.