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China Royal Garden Summer Palace

China Royal Garden Summer Palace (Picture 1)

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The Summer Palace, an imperial garden during the Qing Dynasty in China, formerly known as Qingyi Garden, is located in the western suburbs of Beijing, 15 kilometers away from the city, covering an area of ​​about 290 hectares (2.9 square kilometers), adjacent to the Old Summer Palace. It is a large-scale landscape garden built based on Kunming Lake and Wanshou Mountain, based on Hangzhou West Lake and absorbing the design techniques of Jiangnan gardens. It is also the best preserved imperial palace and imperial garden. It is known as the "Royal Garden Museum". . The Summer Palace was the most important center of political and diplomatic activities by the supreme ruler of the late Qing Dynasty outside the Forbidden City. It was an important witness of modern Chinese history and the place where many major historical events occurred. In the tenth year of Xianfeng (1860), Qingyi Garden was burned down by the British and French coalition forces. It was rebuilt in the fourteenth year of Guangxu (1888) and renamed the Summer Palace as a summer amusement park. In the twenty-sixth year of Guangxu (1900), the Summer Palace was destroyed by the "Eight-Power Allied Forces" and the treasures were looted. After the fall of the Qing Dynasty, the Summer Palace was destroyed again during the warlords' melee and the Kuomintang rule.

Before Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty took the throne, four large imperial gardens were built in the western suburbs of Beijing. In the fifteenth year of Qianlong (1750), Emperor Qianlong used 4.48 million taels of silver to honor his mother, the Empress Dowager Chongqing, to rebuild it into Qingyi Garden, forming a 20-kilometer royal garden area from the current Tsinghua Garden to Xiangshan. During the Qingyiyuan Period, Emperor Qianlong had a lot of collections of wenwan, including Shang and Zhou bronzes, Tang, Song, Yuan and Ming porcelains and jade, as well as calligraphy and painting. There were more than 40,000 furnishings recorded at that time. management. After the Opium War, due to the decline of the national power of the Qing Dynasty, the Qingyi Garden Furnishings were abolished. By the fifth year of Xianfeng (1855), there were 37,583 Furnishings. In the tenth year of Xianfeng (1860), five large royal gardens in the northwestern suburbs of Beijing, including Qingyi Garden, were brutally burned by the British and French forces. According to the inventory after the looting by the British and French forces, there are only 530 furnishings left in Qingyi Garden, and many of them are broken and incomplete. In 1900, the Eight-Power Allied Forces invaded Beijing, and the Summer Palace suffered another catastrophe, and the cultural relics in the garden were completely destroyed. In 1902, Cixi restored the Summer Palace again and made great efforts to enrich the furnishings in the garden.

In the twenty-fourth year of Guangxu (1898), on April 28 (June 16), Emperor Guangxu summoned Kang Youwei at the Renshou Hall of the Summer Palace, ordered Kang to walk on Zhangjing of the General Administration Office, and promised him a special event. Since the announcement of the reform on April 23, Emperor Guangxu has visited the Summer Palace 12 times and summoned the reformists to plan the reform. On the fourth day of August (September 19), Empress Dowager Cixi returned to the palace from the Summer Palace. Two days later, she launched a coup d'etat, imprisoned Emperor Guangxu, arrested and killed the Reformers, and the Reform Movement of 1898 failed. During the reform period (from June to September), Cixi lived in the Summer Palace. The Summer Palace became the center for the conservatives to oppose the reform and prepare for the coup. After the reform failed, Guangxu was confined in Yulantang in the garden for a long time.

The Summer Palace covers an area of ​​293 hectares and is mainly composed of Longevity Mountain and Kunming Lake. There are more than 3000 palace garden buildings of various forms, which can be roughly divided into three parts: administration, life, and sightseeing. The administrative area with Renshou Hall as the center was the place where the Empress Dowager Cixi and Emperor Guangxu sat in court and met with foreign guests. Behind the Palace of Renshou are three large courtyards: Le Shou Tang, Yu Lan Tang and Yi Yun Pavilion, where Cixi, Guangxu and the concubines lived respectively. The Deheyuan Theater on the east side of Yiyun Pavilion is one of the three major theaters in the Qing Dynasty.

The Summer Palace descends from the Wisdom Sea on the top of Wanshou Mountain, and consists of the Buddha Incense Pavilion, Dehui Hall, Paiyun Hall, Paiyun Gate, and Yunhui Yuyu Square, forming a well-defined central axis. At the foot of the mountain is a "promenade" with a length of more than 700 meters. There are more than 8,000 colorful paintings on the beams of the promenade, which is known as the "world's first corridor". Before the promenade is Kunming Lake. The west embankment of Kunming Lake is modeled on the Su embankment of West Lake. There are ancient trees in the back hills of Wanshou Mountain and Houhu Lake, with Tibetan temples and Suzhou Creek Ancient Commercial Street. At the east end of Houhu, there is a humorous garden imitating Wuxi Jichang Garden. It is small and exquisite and is called "the garden in the garden".

After the founding of the People’s Republic of China, there are more than 40,000 cultural relics in the Summer Palace. The categories involve bronze, jade, porcelain, wood, lacquer, calligraphy and painting, ancient books, enamel, clocks and watches, bamboo ware, musical instruments, root carvings, miscellaneous items, etc., almost covering China In all categories of cultural relics handed down, there are many foreign cultural relics; from the point of view of value, there are more than 20,000 national cultural relics, including national treasures such as the white tripod of the son of Guo Xuan, the Sanxi Zun, and the tapestry long axis Buddha image. On March 4, 1961, the Summer Palace was announced as the first batch of national key cultural relics protection units. Together with the Chengde Mountain Resort, Humble Administrator’s Garden, and Lingering Gardens announced at the same time, it was named China’s Four Famous Gardens. It was listed in November 1998. "World Heritage List". On May 8, 2007, the Summer Palace was officially approved by the National Tourism Administration as a national 5A-level tourist attraction. In 2009, the Summer Palace was selected as the largest surviving royal garden in China by the China World Record Association.

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