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石舫,清宴舫 Marble Boat
北京Beijing 颐和园Yiheyuan-yiheyuan_1 >>bjing006


Marble Boat

Picture ID:  bjing006
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Beijing's western hills and the Kunming Lake had been a favorite summer resort since the 金代Jin Dnasty(12th century). In the Qing Dynasty, the emperor 乾隆Qianlong(1736-95) made large scale construction and expansion to what is then the GArden of Pure Ripples. But in 1860, the French and British allies destroyed much of it. The garden was rebuilt later by Prince Chun, who used the money allocated for building an effective navy against the occupation forces,with the intention to allied himself to the then all-powerfull and notorious Empress Dowager 慈禧Cixi. After completion, the garden was renamed Yiheyuan(means to nurture and harmonize),which the western allies called "The Summer Palace". The ill-fated garden did not last long, for in 1900 it was destroyed again by the Eight Allied Armies. Again, money for the military went to the rebuilding of the garden, which was finished two years later in 1903. Among the many pieces resulted from funds allocated to build a strong navy, this useless boat sums it up. It was finished in 1755; the piece is 36 meters in length and built entirely of marble, with stained glass covering its arched windows,Persian style.