My 2021 edition of the Forbidden City stickers, the 17th volume of the serial "Looking at the Red Walls and Gold Tiles, Appreciating the Ming and Qing Palaces", has been generously read by many readers. Among them, some readers put forward some opinions and suggestions, and pointed out some fallacies. This revised edition is republished on the second quarter, adopting the opinions and suggestions of previous readers, enriching some content, correcting clerical errors, and updating and supplementing some pictures. Although I dare not say that all the fallacies have been corrected, most of them should have been corrected. Remember in detail the architectural art of ancient Chinese top palaces seen in the Ming and Qing palaces, some royal cultural relics exhibited in the Forbidden City, and the traces of royal life in the Qing palace, and also think of some stories and legends that happened in the Ming and Qing palaces. Readers", just want to share with readers. thanks.


When Zhu Yuanzhang built the Nanjing Ming Palace, he built the Qianqing Palace for himself to sleep in, and built the Kunning Palace behind it for the queen to sleep in. Where do the three thousand beauties in the harem live? He just built the East and West Six Palaces, but the total of the East and West Six Palaces is twelve yards, can't you live in Ruoshui for three thousand? Let's arrange the concubines first, after all, although the water is three thousand weak, only one ear can be taken at night.

The layout of the harem built by Zhu Diyongle in Beijing in the 18th year was also copied and pasted from the Nanjing Ming Palace. The three halls are slightly wider. So, it sounds like the harem is quite crowded, huh?

The twelve courtyards of the East and West Six Palaces in the Ming Dynasty are all the same size, and the structure layout is also the same. Wait a minute, there are exceptions for the Jingyang Palace in the northeast corner of the East Sixth Palace and the Xianfu Palace in the northwest corner of the West Sixth Palace. There are long streets running through the north and south of the six palaces in the east and west, and horizontal alleys in the east and west. Is there a difference between street and alley? Of course, the street must be very wide, so it is generally called the main street; the lane is relatively narrow, so it is generally called the alley. Streets have street gates, and lanes also have lane gates, which follow the layout of the Lifang system in Chinese cities. This layout of the Ming palace also continued the "six palaces and six bedrooms" system of the imperial palace since the Western Zhou Dynasty, and it has a serious flavor of "well field system" and "nine palace grids". The Ming Dynasty didn't make any changes to the harem until the Jiajing period, and that was just changing the names of the palaces, nothing major.

In the Qing Dynasty, Shunzhi overhauled the East Three Palaces and West Three Palaces close to the Housan Palace, and lived in his concubines. Kangxi had more than six concubines, so he overhauled the remaining East and West Palaces at the far end. During the heyday of the Qing Dynasty, the national power was quite strong, and there were many concubines in the harem who enjoyed daily blessings. In the late Qing Dynasty, after Emperor Xianfeng, the national power was not good, and the emperor's family gradually ran out of surplus food, and could not afford to support many concubines. The direct result of the reduction of concubines in the harem is that the palace rooms are becoming more and more empty, and the houses in the palace cannot be rented out, so some people repurpose uninhabited yards for other purposes. One is to merge the front and back yards, so that the owner can live in a big house; the other is to demolish the old and build a new one. Not to mention the big change in the architectural pattern, even the architectural style is no longer Chinese.

East and west six palaces are divided into upper and lower levels? To divide, as long as there are people, there are three or six or nine grades, the east is the top, and the west is the bottom. Then I will start from the East Sixth Palace to see their subtleties.

The visitor entrance to the East Sixth Palace is the inner left gate on the east side of the Qianqing Gate.

As the name suggests, the inner left door is the left door of the inner bedroom, and the name has no cultural connotation. It is a glazed door with a wall and a solid couch door leaf. On the doorpost, there are two upper and lower corners instead of one for each of the four corners. The plaque is the bilingual "Inner Left Gate" in Manchu and Chinese. The plaques in the inner chamber of the Forbidden City must have been written in Chinese characters in the Ming Dynasty, so there is no problem with this. After the Qing Dynasty came, the earliest plaques were in Manchurian, Mongolian and Chinese, because Emperor Shunzhi had several Mongolian concubines, and even his mother, the Empress Dowager Xiaozhuang, was Mongolian. We know that the earliest Manchus did not have a unified script, and the Nurhachi organization borrowed Mongolian script to create the old Manchu script. After the old Manchu script was reformed by Huang Taiji, it became the new Manchu script. Therefore, those Mongolians will also recognize Manchu. Since all Mongolians knew Manchu, in the thirteenth year of Shunzhi (AD 1656), most of the plaques in the palace were changed to Manchu and Chinese. In 1915, Yuan Shikai removed all the Manchu characters on the plaques of the previous dynasty in the palace. At that time, Puyi was still living in the inner palace according to the "Preferential Treatment Conditions of the Qing Dynasty", so the plaques in the inner palace were not moved, and the bilingual Manchu and Chinese were retained. In recent years, the Forbidden City has rebuilt all the door plaques of the harem, which look brand new. Most of these Manchu scripts are transliterations of Chinese, and only a few are free translations. Having said that, regardless of transliteration or free translation, I can't understand those Manchu characters, so let it go.

Entering through the inner left gate is Dongyi Changjie, from here to the north until the end is the Changkang left gate.

Phantoms can be seen from time to time on the palace walls along the way.

Exit the left gate of Changkang and go west to the east gate of Qiongyuan in the Imperial Garden. On the west side of Dongyi Long Street is the Housan Palace. There is another door not far after entering the inner left door, which is the low light left door. The door plaque has been taken for maintenance, and there is an official apology sticker from the Forbidden City in front of the door.

The outside of the left gate of the dipped light belongs to the inner court, but outside the sixth east palace of the concubines, the sixth east palace is within the left gate of the dipped light. There is a Renxiang Gate to the east outside the left gate of the near light, and the people living in the Renxiang Gate are not harem concubines. It was a part of Fengxian Hall in the period of Zhu Di in the early Ming Dynasty.

There is a small square inside the Renxiang Gate to the east. There is a value house behind the gate, and a white bark pine is planted in front of the house.

The yard to the north of the small square is the Zhai Palace. The Zhai Palace is part of the Fengci Hall in the Ming Dynasty, and later the Shenxiao Hall. Look at its glazed gate, because the emperor is coming, its gate is very formal, with boxes and corners on the gate post.

In the early Ming Dynasty, the tablets of the ancestors were enshrined in the Fengxian Hall inside the palace and the Taimiao outside the palace. Each dynasty was limited to one emperor and one queen, that is, the first emperor and his queen in the middle palace. When it came to Chenghua Emperor Zhu Jianshen, his biological mother was Concubine Zhou, and he was not allowed to enter the ancestral temple according to the system. Zhu Jianshen's son Zhu Youtang (Nianzhu) was also a concubine. After Zhu Youtang succeeded to the throne, he also wanted to offer sacrifices to his mother, Concubine Shu Ji, so in the first year of Hongzhi (1487 AD), the Fengci Hall on the right side of the Fengxian Hall was built. Worship the tablet of Concubine Shu. After the death of Zhu Youtang's grandmother, Concubine Zhou Gui, the tablet was also worshiped in Fengci Hall. Jiajing Emperor Zhu Houcong's mother was the main house, so he abandoned Fengci Hall in the fifteenth year of Jiajing (1536 A.D.). Later, it was changed to Shenxiao Temple, which was abandoned in the early Qing Dynasty.

As a rule, the emperors of the Ming and Qing Dynasties had to fast for three days when offering sacrifices to heaven and earth. There are fasting palaces in the Temple of Heaven and the Temple of Earth for this purpose. Emperor Yongzheng of the Qing Dynasty offended many people and made many enemies. He often heard that someone wanted to take his life or a part of his body. It was said that the body in the coffin in his mausoleum was missing that part. Therefore, from the ninth year of Yongzheng (AD 1731), he changed to fasting in the palace for safety, and converted it into a fasting palace.

The Zhai Palace was closed during the epidemic. After the epidemic eased, one day I walked to the door of Renxiang, and there was a young man standing in the crack of the door. I asked him what he was doing there? He said he was preparing for an exhibition and it would open soon. I came back a few days later, and it turned out that the Palace Museum and China Post jointly held an exhibition in the Zhai Palace, called the Palace Museum-themed stamp exhibition. I don't know much about stamp collecting, but it doesn't prevent me from going in to see the Zhai Palace. I'll go in.

Looking through the side door, the building inside the fasting palace has not been repaired for a long time, and it looks very dilapidated. In order to block the light, there is a screen door in the gate of the Zhai Palace, which means the screen wall.

Standing behind the screen door, you can see the main hall of the fasting palace.

This main hall is called the Zhai Palace. It is five rooms wide and two rooms deep. Doors are opened between the bright room and the east and west rooms, and the sill walls and windows are set up between the ends. There are three open buildings in front of the building, and the yellow glazed tile roll-up shed hangs on the top of the mountain. Below the main hall is a two-foot-high blue brick base and a white stone platform. There are vertical belts on the front and east and west sides of the platform. The front is the imperial road, and there are double dragons playing with pearls and Feiyun Danbi stone.

There is a copper vat on each side of the imperial road, and there are bronze tripod furnaces on the exposed seats on both sides of the vat, which are used to burn incense. When the fire in the incense burner is too hot, you can scoop water from the vat to put it out.

Stand in the spacious open room in front of the door and have a look.

The painted paintings on Liang Fang are quite weathered, and the appearance of Ssangyong and Xi can still be seen. The plaque in the Zhai Palace was inscribed by Yongzheng. This plaque is not affixed with gold and is very plain.

Look at the second door.

This is called a partition door, and there are four doors in total, with six heads. There are lead-forged leaves on the frame, and those with stamped cloud and dragon patterns are called lead-forged leaves, and generally they are called noodles. Gold ruyi skirt board, brocade lattice flowers step by step. Look under the eaves of the open pavilion.

There are hollow wood carving boards between the horizontal beams on the second floor. This is called a Huaban. It is usually used between the horizontal beams on the second floor of the pavilion in the open-air building. It has been seen in the imperial garden. The painted paintings on the wooden components have almost disappeared, and it can be seen that iron belts are used to reinforce the beams and columns. Here and there there are reinforcing hooks of this kind, a temporary measure, indicative of the decay of the timberwork.

The glazed tiles on the roof look good. I wonder when was the last repair? Wake on the corner porch is not young.

There are side halls on both sides of the main hall, look at the west side hall.

It is three rooms wide, with bucket arches and beams, yellow glazed tiles with single eaves hanging from the top of the mountain, and an eaves corridor in front. The sash steps in front of the veranda are new.

There is a courtyard behind the main hall, which is not open, so go to the door and take a look. It seems that there is a hand-painted veranda in the backyard, and the hanging belt at the door is also newly made.

Go into the main hall to have a look.

The Ming room and the East and West rooms are connected to form the main hall, and the emperor's throne used to be in the middle. The tops are divided into warm pavilions, the west warm pavilion is used as a Buddhist hall, and the east warm pavilion is used as a study room. The Qing emperor can work in this hall during fasting. Look at the Pilu hat on the door of Shaojian, and the woodcarving of rosewood.

look at the ceiling.

Beaulieu sticks the ceiling of gold and flat chess, and the muddy gold beaulieu fights eight caissons. Behind the main hall is a corridor leading directly to the apse. It turns out that this is an I-shaped front and rear hall.

Take a look at the apse. The apse was originally called Fuyong Hall (Nianfu Hall), and later changed its name to Chengsu Hall to avoid the taboo of Emperor Jiaqing.

This is the sleeping hall, seven rooms wide and one room deep. The apse is Tuanhe Pingqi smallpox.

In the special exhibition of stamps in the Zhai Palace, China Post took out stamps related to the Forbidden City, and the Forbidden City displayed the cultural relics mentioned on the stamps.

The Eastern Han Dynasty "Jade Changle Valley Pattern Wall" in the "Hetian Jade" stamp in 2012. The valley patterns are those small dots on the wall, carved out by subtracting the ground.

This one is even older, the "White Jade Carved Dragon and Phoenix Wall" of the Warring States Period on the special stamp of "The Palace Museum" in 2015.

2004 "Chicken Blood Stone Seal" stamps, one is the "Qianlong Chenhan" seal of Qing Qianlong, and the other is the "Wei Ji Wei Kang" seal of his son Jiaqing.

Look at the seal of "Qianlong Chenhan" in it.

The "Qianlong Chenhan" seal in this set of stamps is engraved on the calligraphy and painting of the imperial brush, and I have seen this seal on the plaque. At first, it was a Changhua chicken blood stone carving, and the author was unknown. The flowers on the cliff are engraved on it, and there are two small poems by the author on the cliff, which are quite literary. After entering the palace, this seal was made in the twenty-fourth year of Qianlong (AD 1759). It is said that Qianlong had more than twenty "Qianlong Chenhan" imperial treasures, and there is still one Tianhuang in the Forbidden City, a total of nine. In 2017, there was an auction in France of a Shoushan steatite "Qianlong Chenhan" seal, which was auctioned off by someone for 1.22 million euros. At the beginning, China Post obtained the photo printed by "Qianlong Chenhan" from the Forbidden City, and then printed stamps based on the photo. This bloodstone "Qianlong Chenhan" Imperial Treasure was Qianlong's favorite, and it was exhibited to the public for the first time. It was never shown in the 600-year exhibition of the Forbidden City last year. It is the most rare exhibit in this special exhibition. We can often see this seal on the calligraphy and painting of the imperial brush, and this exhibition saw the real object of this imperial treasure.

Taiwan, China has issued two stamps of "Tianji Zun in Cloisonné Enamel", both of which are Tianji Zun from the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty in the National Palace Museum in Taipei. This special exhibition exhibited a "Qianlong style cloisonné enamel Tianji Zun" collected by the Palace Museum, which is one of the six special stamps "Cloisonne" issued by China Post in 2013.

In 2003, China Post issued a set of special stamps of "Eastern Zhou Bronze Ware". Take a look at the "Bronze Square Plate with Turtle and Fish Pattern" in this set of stamps.

There are also calligraphy and painting stamps. Take a look at Han Huang's "Five Bulls Picture" stamp.

Part of the reproduction of Han Huang's "Five Bulls".

Wang Xizhi's "Lanting Collection Preface" has also been on stamps, and "Ancient Chinese Calligraphy - Running Script" in 2010. Check out Feng Chengsu's facsimile copy.

Wang Xizhi's "Lanting Collection Preface" has long been lost, and Feng Chengsu's copy in the Tang Dynasty is considered the best copy. This book is full of various appreciation seals and inscriptions, and has clear inheritance records, but some people have verified that this book is not necessarily copied by Feng Chengsu.

This exhibition is very interesting. On one side are the special stamps of ancient cultural relics, and on the other side are the actual cultural relics in the stamps, which are a perfect match. There is also a demonstration of the stamp making process by stamp companies, including templates and blueprints at various stages. After watching the exhibition, I left the Zhai Palace, and a greyish gray baffle was erected on the east side of the small square in front of the Zhai Palace.

Behind the baffle is a closed palace gate, which is the Yangyao Gate.

Inside Yangyao Gate is Yuqing Palace, which is another part of Fengci Hall in Ming Dynasty. This Yangyao Gate is not the main entrance of Yuqing Palace. The main entrance of Yuqing Palace should face south. It is called Qianxing Gate on the north wall of the square outside Jingyunmen.

In the 14th year of Kangxi in the Qing Dynasty (AD 1675), the emperor appointed his eldest son Yinreng as the prince, and built a palace for Yinreng here, called Yuqing Palace. After Yinfeng was abolished, this place was no longer called Taiwo, and ordinary princes also lived here. After the prince gets married, the emperor will give him a house to live in outside the palace. At that time, Yinzhen moved out to live in the Prince Yong's Mansion at the root of the distant city wall, which is now the Lama Temple. After Yongzheng came to power, there was no crown prince, and the prince lived in Yuqing Palace. Qianlong lived here before he ascended the throne, and later Emperor Jiaqing also lived here when he was a child. Yuqing Palace is a pure Qing Dynasty building, but it was still built according to the style of the Ming Palace, and it was rebuilt and expanded during the Qianlong period. When Jiaqing first came to power, he did not live in the Hall of Mental Cultivation, but still lived here. It was not until Qianlong passed away that he moved to the Hall of Mental Cultivation. After that, Jiaqing did not allow the princes to live here, and Yuqing Palace became the Qiandi Memorial Hall. Jiaqing ordered Shi Lei to renovate Yuqing Palace. In the late Qing Dynasty, Yuqing Palace was the place where the princes went to school. Tongzhi, Guangxu and Xuantong all studied here.

There is a house-like gate on the tall palace wall opposite Renxiang Gate. This is the Rijing Gate we saw on the east veranda of Qianqing Palace Square.

The Rijing Gate is the gate from the Qianqing Palace to the East Sixth Palace. The emperor can go here directly along the east veranda, and then go to play somewhere in the East Sixth Palace; the concubines in the East Sixth Palace can also go to the Qianqing Palace from here. "Shang" means the emperor; "Yu" is not to control or defend, but to serve.

How does the emperor choose which concubine to be royal tonight? There is a slight record in the Qing Dynasty that when the emperor was having dinner, all the concubines gathered outside Yanxi Hall, the west ear room of the Hall of Mental Cultivation, and waited for the emperor to choose. After the emperor had eaten and drank enough, the eunuch brought the green lottery with the name of the concubine to the emperor on a tray. The emperor picked a name from the tray, then thought about the appearance of this person, and looked up at the women in the yard when he remembered it. After thinking about it and looking at it, the emperor turned over the green lottery, and it was considered a good choice. Don't look at the emperor singing and singing every night, but there are quite a few concubines who live alone. If the emperor couldn't remember the appearance of this concubine, and couldn't find the face corresponding to this name among the women in the courtyard, this concubine would definitely have to watch the waning moon alone tonight. After the emperor made his selection, those who were not selected bowed their heads and dispersed. The selected concubine stayed in Yanxi Hall to rest. After the Emperor Ye entered the kang, she bathed in the fragrant soup of Yanxi Hall, and then the eunuchs rolled the jade body into a big quilt like pancakes and scallions. The eunuch carried the large pancake roll with scallions onto the imperial kang in the back hall of the Hall of Mental Cultivation, and then waited outside the window, pretending to cough when the time came to remind the emperor to rest. You see, the emperor made the relationship between his son and daughter into such a mechanical process, where is there any love between men and women? The whole thing is a man-made project.

Walking along Dongyi Long Street and passing the left gate of the low light is the range of the East Sixth Palace. There is also a gate in the first cross alley east of Dongyi Chang Street, which is called Xianhe Zuomen. Turn around and go east along Dongyiheng Lane. The first courtyard is Jingren Palace, and the gate is Jingren Gate.

This is also a glazed door with a wall, and the top is colored glaze imitating the top of Xieshan Mountain. Look at the wall posts on both sides of it, there is no box in the middle, but there are corners at all four corners. These courtyard gates in the harem are slightly different from the street gates like the inner left gate, reflecting a change.

The white marble inlaid marble screen wall at the entrance is said to be a relic of the Yuan Palace. The patterns on the marble are very beautiful, so Zhu Di left it and moved it into his palace. You pay attention to the four corners of the base of the screen wall, each with a stone carving squatting dragon. This squatting dragon is different from the dragon in our impression, it has long hair fluttering. Remember the appearance of this squatting dragon, and first recognize it as the style of a Yuan Dynasty dragon.

Only by bypassing the marble screen wall can the connotation of the courtyard be seen.

Xuan Ye, the third son of Emperor Shunzhi of the Qing Dynasty, was born in this Jingren Palace in the eleventh year of Shunzhi (1654 A.D.), and he became Emperor Kangxi. Since Kangxi was born in this Jingren Palace, it can be regarded as the Dragon Palace. Look at the architecture of Dragon Palace. There are two entrances in this courtyard, and the front main hall is the living room of Jingren Palace.

Jingren Palace is five rooms wide, and the open room is the hall room, with four doors and four sliding doors, double crosses, four bowls of ribbed flowers, and Ruyi skirt boards. Below the secondary and tip rooms on both sides are blue brick sill walls, and above are partition windows. The roof is a structure of bucket arches and beams, with yellow glazed tiles and a single eaves resting on the top of the mountain, and five ridge beasts. On the horizontal square are dragons, phoenixes and seals. There is a two-foot-high platform in front of the main hall, with vertical belts on three sides, and Danbi stone in the middle of the front. Danbi stone is surrounded by white marble railings installed in recent years.

There are auxiliary halls on the east and west sides of the main hall, three rooms wide, with yellow glazed tiles and single eaves on the hard mountain top, and a one-foot-high platform. There is an ear room on the north side of the side hall.

The main hall in the second entrance courtyard is the bedroom, and there are side halls on both sides.

The apse is also five rooms wide, but on the top is a yellow glazed tile single-eave hard mountain top, and below is a two-foot-high platform.

There are no trees in the front three halls and rear three halls of the Forbidden City. Some people say that it is for fire prevention, theft prevention and assassination. Others say it is a feng shui method. The first three palaces and the last three palaces are in the "earth" position of the imperial palace, and wood can restrain the earth. Some people say that planting trees inside the palace wall means that there is wood in the mouth, which is "sleepy" and unlucky. But there are trees in the imperial garden, and there are many trees, and there are also trees in the harem. There are trees in Jingren Palace, and there is also a very beautiful octagonal glass Xumizuo tree pool.

Jingren Palace is a typical two-entry courtyard. Let's see how many rooms it has. There are ten main rooms in the front yard, three east and west wing rooms, and four east and west wing rooms, making a total of twenty-four rooms. There are five main rooms in the backyard, three east and west wing rooms, and two east and west wing rooms, making a total of fifteen rooms. How about thirty-nine rooms in total in the front and back yards? Is it more than the eight or eighteen houses in the folk?

The interior of Jingren Palace did not restore the layout of the Qing Dynasty, but made an exhibition hall. With the meaning of admiring benevolence, when I came here, the donated cultural relics received by the Forbidden City were exhibited here, and it became a special museum for donated cultural relics of the Forbidden City. The earliest exhibition of cultural relics donated by Mr. Ma Heng was held in 2005. Mr. Ma Heng was the director of the Palace Museum when the People's Republic of China was founded. The Palace Museum set up a "Jingren List" for these donors in Jingren Palace.

Take a look at Huang Tingjian's "Masters' Posts" donated by Mr. Zhang Boju, crazy grass.

Jingren Palace was called Chang'an Palace in the early Ming Dynasty. It is said that there were two pavilions "Weihe" and "Congshan" here at first, which have long been lost. In the 14th year of Jiajing (AD 1535), it was renamed Jingren Palace, which is the first palace of the East Six Palaces. It was rebuilt several times in the Qing Dynasty, and the last time was during the Guangxu period. Jingren means admiration for benevolence, which is taken from "The Analects of Confucius". In the early Ming Dynasty, Zhu Di married his grandson Zhu Zhanji to a relative, and made the bride the emperor's grandson concubine, namely Hu Shanxiang. When Zhu Gaochi, Zhu Di's son, was the emperor, he made Hu Shanxiang the crown prince. After Zhu Zhanji himself succeeded to the throne, Hu Shanxiang was of course the queen. Within two years, Zhu Zhanji said that Empress Hu would not have a son, and deposed her from Kunning Palace to Jingren Palace, and Jingren Palace became a cold palace.

In the early Qing Dynasty, Concubine Tong of Emperor Shunzhi lived in Jingren Palace and gave birth to the prince Xuanye, who later became Emperor Kangxi. During the Yongzheng period, Concubine Xi (Nianxi) lived here, who was Hongli's mother, who was conferred the title of noble concubine, and Hongli later became Emperor Qianlong. This Concubine Xi is Zhen Huan in the TV series. After Emperor Qianlong ascended the throne, Concubine Xi was named the Empress Dowager of Chongqing, enjoying all the glory and wealth. At first, she moved out of Jingren Palace and moved into Yongshou Palace, which is the closest to the Hall of Mental Cultivation in the Sixth West Palace. Immediately afterwards, Qianlong specially built the Shoukang Palace for the Empress Dowager. After the palace was erected, the Empress Dowager Chongqing moved to live in the Shoukang Palace. Qianlong spent 4.5 million taels of silver to build the Summer Palace for the Empress Dowager's 60th birthday. The Empress Dowager Chongqing finally lived to be eighty-four years old, making her the longest-lived empress dowager in Chinese history. After the empress dowager of Chongqing moved out, Qianlong's concubine Chun lived here, and concubine Ying followed her. From the beginning of the Yongzheng Dynasty, the queens of the Qing Dynasty lived in Kunning Palace, and the queen who gave birth to Jiaqing's son Min (Nian Min) Ning lived in Jingren Palace. Minning later became Emperor Daoguang. Min Ning is the prince who led the officers and soldiers to resist the Dali militia at Longzongmen. Emperor Guangxu's noble concubine Ke (Nianke) Shun also lived here, that is, Concubine Zhen.

Go out of Jingren Palace and continue eastward along Yiheng Alley, pass through an alley gate called Jingyao Gate, and outside there is a long street running north-south. This is Dongerchang Street, the southern end of which is Yihengxiang, and the northern end is Qianyingmen, which leads to the North Fifth Institute, also known as Gandong Fifth Institute. After passing Dongerchang Street and continuing eastward along Yiheng Lane, there is another courtyard here, and the door plaque on the gate of the Liuli Courtyard has also been sent for overhaul. This is the Yanxi Gate.

Yanxi Gate, like Jingren Gate, is also a glazed wall gate. Yanxi Palace was called Changshou Palace in the early Ming Dynasty, and its architectural layout was the same as that of Jingren Palace. It was renamed Yanqi Palace in the 14th year of Jiajing in Ming Dynasty, and Yanxi Palace in Shunzhi period of Qing Dynasty. At the end of the Qing Dynasty, a crystal palace called the Water Palace was built here. Go in and have a look at the Crystal Palace.

In the middle is a pool with granite walls and a granite bottom, which is solid and durable. There must be fish in the pond, pull the fish steak to the side, and put a building in the middle of the fish pond. According to the original design, the building was a copper frame structure, which was changed to a granite structure during construction. Since the building sits in the pool, of course there will be a floor under the water, which can also be called the basement or underwater room. The original glass wall in the basement was changed to a granite wall and a granite support buttress, and the arched windows were kept, so that you can watch fish underwater. The first floor is also a granite structure. Western arched windows, arches, arches and all reliefs on the wall are Chinese. This reminds me of the Daqinglou in Fengtian Marshal's Mansion, which was built in the Republic of China, later than the Crystal Palace. It is also a Western-style building with Chinese-style reliefs. The original design of the first floor of the Crystal Palace was a double-layer glass wall with a copper beam frame, and water was poured between the double-layer glass to raise fish. The Western-style building has no eaves, but the current appearance looks like a steel frame with a building on the south side, and there are frames of corridors around it. The plan of this first floor is a square hall with extended hexagonal halls on the four corners. Look at the corners.

The second floor of the Crystal Palace is a terrace with five pavilions on it. In the middle is a two-story eight-sided pavilion combining Chinese and Western styles. From a Chinese perspective, it looks like an octagonal pavilion; from a Western perspective, it looks like Tempietto. On the four corners of the terrace, there are Hexagonal Pavilions that go up from the Hexagonal Hall on the first floor, which is neither Chinese nor Western. The hexagonal pavilions and octagonal pavilions on the second-floor terrace only have frames. These frames were originally designed to be made of copper, but they were changed during construction. Now they are all made of steel, and the metal structure of the entire building has been changed to steel. The frame of the pavilion on the second floor should be filled with glass walls, probably the only glass structure that can be preserved. Although it has undergone design changes, the cost of this Crystal Palace may still be beyond estimate, so the construction project has not been completed for three years. After the Revolution of 1911, the royal family went bankrupt and went bankrupt, and it was impossible to continue building the Crystal Palace. A hundred years later, what I saw when I came here was still such an unfinished building, the same as it was a hundred years ago. Don't tell me, if this building is completed, it will probably look like the Vajra Throne Pagoda. There is a Vajra Throne Pagoda in the Wuta Temple outside the north gate of the zoo.

There are also trees in Yanxi Palace, which are ginkgo trees, which are shining golden in autumn.

The Palace of Yanxi Palace is in the corner of the East Sixth Palace, where the unfavored concubines lived all the time in the Ming Dynasty. During the Shunzhi period of the Qing Dynasty, there were not so many concubines, so it was vacant for a period of time. In the 25th year of Kangxi (AD 1686), it was overhauled once, and the newly promoted Concubine Hui lived in it. Concubine Hui was the first among the four concubines of Kangxi at that time, and her status was quite high. During Yongzheng, according to Kangxi's will, she left the palace and lived in the house of her adopted son, Prince Eighth Prince Lian Yinhu (Nianyin 4). In the fourth year of Yongzheng, Yinhu was convicted, and Concubine Hui returned to the palace to live in Ningshou Palace. During the Qianlong period, Concubine Wan lived here. In the early years of Qianlong, she was Chen Guiren. She was named Wanpin in the fourteenth year (AD 1749), and Wanfei in the fifty-ninth year. She was seventy-eight years old. In the sixth year of Jiaqing (1801 A.D.), she was named Concubine Wangui at the age of eighty-five. Concubine Wangui died in the twelfth year of Jiaqing at the age of ninety-two. She was the longest-lived concubine in the Qing Dynasty, outliving Qianlong's mother and son. It seems that Qianlong's family has longevity genes. At that time, not to mention the palace, there were no gyms or swimming pools in the capital. They didn't do sports, and they all lived long. Qianlong's father, Yongzheng, lived to be fifty-eight years old, almost; but his mother, the Empress Dowager Chongqing, lived to be eighty-four years old, the longest-lived empress dowager in the Qing Dynasty. Both Qianlong's grandma and grandfather lived to be in their eighties, and his longevity genes came from his mother's line. The strange thing is that Qianlong did not pass the longevity gene to Concubine Ling, but to Concubine Wan, so that Concubine Wan lived to be ninety-two years old, and Concubine Ling lived to forty-nine years old. Jiaqing, the son of Qianlong and Lingfei, lived to be sixty-one years old, and did not live as long as his father. The later emperors all followed the concubine Ling, and none of them lived long. Daoguang was sixty-nine years old; Xianfeng was thirty-one years old; Although the later Guangxu Emperor Zaitian and Xuantong Emperor Puyi were not born as princes, they both have the bloodline of the cooperation between Qianlong and Lingfei. Do you think Concubine Ling is amazing? Her lineage continued until the end of the Qing Dynasty. The very popular "The Story of Yanxi Palace" said that the concubine Ling lived in the Yanxi Palace, but it was actually a joke and there was no textual research to support it. Concubine Ling is a celebrity in Qianlong's eyes, how can she live in such a remote place? Concubine Ling lives in the Chuxiu Palace in the Sixth West Palace, which is close to the Hall of Mental Cultivation. When Concubine Ling fell ill for the last time, she even lived in the east wing of the Hall of Mental Cultivation and lived with Qianlong.

During the reign of Emperor Daoguang, the grandson of Qianlong, Concubine Tian of the Fucha family lived in the Palace of Yanxi Palace with the nobles Cheng and Chang. Before Min Ning, the second prince of Emperor Jiaqing, ascended the throne as Emperor Daoguang, the Fucha clan was already Min Ning's leading Fujin. When Min Ning was promoted (nianzhusheng) to Emperor Daoguang, in the fifth year of Daoguang (AD 1825), the Fucha family was granted the title of concubine Tian and lived in Yanxi Palace. Daoguang likes the new and hates the old, and doesn't want to see Concubine Tian. But the Queen and Concubine Tian are on good terms, and Daoguang occasionally calls Concubine Tian Concubine Tian. In the twenty-fifth year of Daoguang, Yanxi Palace caught fire, and all the houses were burned down, leaving only one palace gate. The tragic concubine Tian was severely injured in the fire. She caught fire in May and died in July.

In the eleventh year of Tongzhi (AD 1872), the Yanxi Palace was decreed to be rebuilt. At that time, Xie Lei had already started to conduct surveys, and made a hot sample for approval, following the order of the Changchun Palace. The imperial decree for reconstruction is in place, the survey is completed, the site has been cleaned up, and even the ironing samples have been done. The second year was the twelfth year of Tongzhi. According to the almanac, "the direction is hindered", no construction was started. The third year was the thirteenth year of Tongzhi. At the beginning of the year, work started to rebuild the Summer Palace. The money used to build the Yanxi Palace was misappropriated for Empress Dowager Cixi's birthday. When the smallpox epidemic broke out in the twelfth lunar month that year, Emperor Tongzhi was diagnosed with the infection because he had not been vaccinated, and died in the Hall of Mental Cultivation. As a result, after the Yanxi Palace was burned during the Daoguang period, the reconstruction of the palace delayed the Xianfeng and Tongzhi dynasties. During the Tongzhi period, the domestic situation was very similar to the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty. During the Eastern Han Dynasty, there was the Yellow Turban Uprising, and during the Tongzhi period, there was the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom; at the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty, the Yellow Turbans defeated Cao Sunliu, and during the Tongzhi period, the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom produced Zeng Lizuo. The Eastern Han Dynasty was brought down by Cao Sunliu, and Emperor Tongzhi was also afraid of history repeating itself, and at that time both the East and the West were constantly threatening outside China. Tongzhi did not have time to deal with domestic crises and overseas threats, leaving it to Emperor Guangxu. Under this situation, Emperor Guangxu knew that the Qing Dynasty would not be guaranteed, so he had to start the reform, but he was not caught and the Qing Dynasty collapsed.

At the end of the Qing Dynasty, the number of treasury banks gradually decreased, and they were always in a difficult situation. Moreover, both Tongzhi and Guangxu have no financial acumen and cannot issue national debt. To rebuild Yanxi Palace, money is not a problem, the problem is lack of money. Until Emperor Xuantong ascended the throne, Empress Longyu who was married by Guangxu stepped on the scorched earth of the Taihe Gate finally took the C position. Empress Longyu, who had never been seen by Emperor Guangxu, became the empress dowager, and she also followed the example of her aunt, Empress Dowager Cixi, to listen to politics behind the curtain. As soon as she came up, she had to walk around the harem first, and then she saw the vacant Yanxi Palace, which she used as a playground, where she let the three-year-old Pu Yi run wildly. When Longyu became the leader, he must also do some basic construction, so she thought of the Palace of Yanxi Palace. Although Longyu has a limited appearance, he has enough brains. In the past, he used to eavesdrop on the Guangxu Restoration boasting about the good things of foreigners. This time, he will build a bungalow in the Palace of Yanxi Palace. The Empress Dowager Longyu sent Concubine Jin of Guangxu as the project manager to build the "Water Palace" in Yanxi Palace, commonly known as the "Crystal Palace". The name of the Crystal Palace is Lingzhaoxuan, and its location is in the front hall of the former Yanxi Palace. This architectural design must have been done by a foreigner, and the descendants of Xiang Lei would not do such an unprecedented thing. Traditional Chinese royal buildings are all wooden frame structures filled with bricks as walls; this Crystal Palace has a copper frame structure filled with glass as walls, and glass at that time was regarded as inferior crystal. Although the project of the Crystal Palace was started, the original design estimate was not enough, so the designer kept applying for an adjustment, and the Queen Mother Longyu, the party A, kept vetoing it with one vote, because she really had no money in the treasury. As a result, the designer had to constantly change the design.

In the first year of Xuantong (1909 A.D.), the construction of the Crystal Palace started, and a major event happened two years later. At that time, the Qing court could no longer continue to govern, and the revolutionary movement outside was surging. In addition to the lingering Qing court itself, the Mongolian aristocrats outside the pass also intended to retain the Qing court and practice constitutionalism like England; while the reformers in the pass wanted to overthrow the Qing court and build a republic like France. The two sides did not agree, and eventually went their own way. The Mongolian nobles in Mobei formed a substantive separatist regime and finally a constitutional system; the reformers in the pass overthrew the Qing court and established the Republic of China. On the twenty-fifth day of the twelfth lunar month in the third year of Xuantong (February 12, 1912), the Empress Dowager Longyu hijacked Emperor Xuantong for the last time at the Hall of Mental Cultivation to issue the "Edict of Qing Emperor's Abdication". The complete territory of the Hui-Tibet five ethnic groups constitutes a large Republic of China." According to the ancestral system of the Qing Dynasty, this edict should be printed with the "Emperor's Treasure" or "The Treasure of the Ten Thousand People" among the twenty-five treasures of Jiaotai Hall, but this edict is privately engraved by Cixi as "Fa Tian Li Dao". The seal was not compliant, and the name of the imperial edict was not correct, indicating that Longyu wanted to foreshadow the future restoration. Sure enough, in the sixth year of the Republic of China (AD 1917), Zhang Xun and Kang Youwei launched the restoration of the short-lived Ding Si who lived only ten days.

As soon as the Qing court collapsed, half of the Yanxi Palace Water Palace project was completely discontinued. In 1931, the Palace Museum built a low-rise building in Yanxi Palace, which served as a cultural relics warehouse. New China built a more advanced warehouse for cultural relics with constant temperature and humidity, and turned the Yanxi Palace building into a ceramic research center and a calligraphy and painting research center. In 2010, the Palace of Yanxi Palace was opened to the outside world, which caused a sensation, and even provoked literati to film "A Brief Introduction to the Palace of Yanxi Palace". In fact, the concubine Ling in history has nothing to do with the Palace of Yanxi Palace.

After watching Yanxi Palace, go outside the wall. Suddenly, I found that there is glass decoration on the outer wall of the ancient calligraphy and painting research center in the courtyard. This is a demonstration of a typical beam-lifting structure in Chinese-style buildings. This building should be such a beam-lifting structure.

Go back to Dongyi Changjie from Yanxi Palace and continue to go north.

(to be continued)