Friday, September 17, 2010

Beijing, part 6: The Center of the Known World

r31 - Zhōnghé Hall
We rested a moment at the Zhong of the Zhong: the Middle Hall in the center group of three halls in the middle of the Forbidden City in the center of Beijing in the political center of the Middle Kingdom which is at the heart of the known world.

And back down the other side.
r34 - Bǎohé Hall

We got some food at one of the two eateries in this part of the palace, then wandered through more halls.

r37 - Yǎngxīn Hall Roof

r38 - Yǎngxīn Hall Yellow Tiles

The buildings and courtyards were quickly all starting to look the same. And the stories, too. This is the throne where the emperor made big decisions. This is the throne where the emperor made really big decisions. No, this is the throne where the emperor sat while the Emperor Dowager sat behind that curtain on that throne and made all the big decisions.

r41 - Playing before the Palace of Heavenly Purity

r44 - Heavenly Purity Palace Throne

For a change of pace, we headed over to the Watch and Clock Gallery on the east side of the Forbidden City.
r46 - Fèngxiàn Hall

r47 - Flower Clock

At 2 p.m., we watched a few medium-sized clocks spin a few trees and flowers. It wasn't as impressive as I'd hoped.

r48 - Imperial Clocks

r51 - Chunlin and Watches

Nearby is the Nine Dragon Screen.
r54 - Mark at Nine Dragon Screen - Ch

Nine is a lucky, powerful number in China and dragons are ... well, dragons!
r53 - Dragon Eight of Nine

For more photos, head on over to flickr.

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