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Ancient Walls Hidden in Beijing’s Antique Buildings

Popularity 7Viewed 2117 times 2015-9-1 18:02 |System category:News

Beijing’s ancient walls are the treasures of the Chinese history. No matter whether they are building walls, city walls or wall-like screens built in old houses, they bear special historical meanings. Inside many of Beijing’s renowned scenic areas visitors can see a variety of ancient walls which convey important meanings for the family. The following walls and screens are their representatives.


1. Red Walls of Palace Museum

The Forbidden City is a group of small and big buildings made from red walls and yellow tiles. These walls look beautiful and magnificent with a height of 10 meters, a width of 760 from east to west and a length of 960 meters from south to north. Why were these walls painted red that time? Because people considered red an auspicious color that time. It means happiness and perfection. Coming to the center of Beijing, you will be able to appreciate these walls.


2. Ming Dynasty Wall Relics
These wall relics are found in today’s Ming Dynasty Wall Relics Park and have experienced over 580 years of history. These walls were first built in the 17th year of Emperor Yongle’s reign during the Ming Dynasty. The original city walls stretched as long as 40 kilometers, but today only 1.5 kilometers are preserved. They are a symbol of Beijing. These walls had been seriously damaged and so the government restored them years before.


3. Echo Wall of Temple of Heaven
There is a well-known echo wall inside the Temple of Heaven. It is 3.72 meters tall and has a perimeter of 204.728 meters. The Echo Wall is very smooth and tidy, and it is this feature that makes the sound touching it reflect very regularly. When one person stands at one end and one stands at the other, they can hear each other clearly when talk talk no matter how low their voices may sound.


4.Nine-Dragon Wall (Screen) of Beihai Park
A screen is a traditional Chinese building specially made to block viewing. The Nine-Dragon Wall stands in Beihai Park is one of the screens. Now it is the most gorgeous one among the top 3 colored glazed Nine-Dragon Walls in China. The Nine-Dragon Wall in Beihai Park is five meters tall and 27 meters long. On the two sides of the screen are covered by 18 dragons made from baked glazed bricks with red, yellow, white, blue, green and purple colors. They all differ from one another and are unique in shape.


5.Screen of Beijing Courtyards
A screen in each Beijing courtyard house is nearly indispensable and has important functions. First, it prevents outsiders from seeing the inside private parts of the house. Second, it is a decoration for the house. Third, according to Chinese tradition, the screen can congregate “气 (air)”, which often refers to wealth and auspiciousness. On each screen there are some patterns. God of Longevity, magpie, crane, Chinese unicorn, bat and coin are popular patterns.


Note: I wrote and published this article first at Visitbeijing.com.cn. I think this is an interesting and beautiful one and so I republish it here. Hope all my friends like it, especially those who love traditional Chinese culture.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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  • The distance between today and yesterday 2018-2-14 22:27

    I was in Zhejiang when I saw a street opera like this. It was very interesting to see a Chinese opera on the street for free. There was a pretty big crowd there, but I could still see the play. It was days like this that made the Chinese culture so interesting to me. Unfortunately I didn't get to share it with anyone, this was before I used Wechat. I liked how you could enjoy special treats for only 1 or 2 yuan, and even gamble a little bit.

  • The distance between today and yesterday 2017-11-20 12:52

    Inevitable loss of economic development

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