Home >> Architecture and Garden

Beijing's Famous Towers

Updated: 2014-12-01 14:08:10

( Chinaculture.org )

Share on

The architectural art of tall buildings was highly developed in ancient China, dating back to the Warring States Period (475-221BC). Among them, the classical ChineseLou, which in modern Chinese refers to buildings of two or more stories, has been regarded as one type of the representative works. In ancientChina,Loumeans a storied building with a horizontal main ridge and usually, all-round verandas. Many such buildings also feature sloped, double-eaved roofs, and carved brackets supporting the overhanging eaves from the columns.Beijing, as the capital of Yuan, Ming and Qing three dynasties, has a classical collection ofLou, such as:Cheng Lou(GateTower),Jiao Lou(CornerTower),Jian Lou(ArcheryTower),Zhong Lou(BellTower) andGu Lou(DrumTower).


Located to the north of theTian'anmen Square, the Tian'anmen Gate (Gate of Heavenly Peace) is a vermilion building with yellow glazed tiles, glistening in the sunlight with all its beauty, splendor and grandeur. 

Tian'anmen Gate was built in the 15th year (1417) of Emperor Yongle's reign in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), and has a history of over 570 years. From imperial days, the yellow glaze-tiled double-eaves tower functioned as a rostrum for proclamations to the assembled masses. The tower has five doors and in front of it are seven bridges spanning a stream. Only the emperor could use the central door and bridge.

The Gate measures 43.7 meters in height and with a facade of 62.77 meters wide. This solemn architecture of national style with double eaves has 60 grand red columns, 8 ball-shaped palace lanterns hanging high, white balustrade, yellow tiles, red beams and painted pillars, which in the arrangement of either colors or structures shine in its entirety, with the extraordinary beauty of harmony.

Looking up, the four roof-ridges with an orderly array of figurines of dragons, phoenix, lions, unicorns, heavenly horses, fighting bulls and other animals can be seen, which are vivid and brilliant. But under the up-turned roof-eaves, there are lightly painted graceful pictures of golden dragon and imperial seal, golden phoenix and imperial seal, dragon brocade and imperial seal, dragon phoenix and imperial seal etc., which are known as palace color pictures with a history of several hundred years.

OnOctober 1, 1949, Chairman Mao Zedong, standing on the tower, proclaimed the founding of the newChina.

1 2 3 Next
Editor's Pick
Hot words
Most Popular