Forbidden City
Hall of Supreme Harmony

The Forbidden City, Beijing, China

The Hall of Supreme Harmony, part 1
太和殿 (1)

After passing the Gate of Supreme Harmony (TaiHeMen), you will see the Hall of Supreme Harmony (TaiHeDian) across another spacious courtyard which covers a space of 30,000 square meters - the biggest courtyard in the Forbidden City.

过了太和门,穿过这个占地30,000平方米的巨大的院子—紫禁城内最大的一个院子,雄伟的太和殿将会展现在你眼前。


A view of the Hall of Supreme Harmony from the
Gate of Supreme Harmony.

Sitting on a seven meter high, three-tier marble terrace, the grandest timber framework building ever in China will overwhelm anyone.

这个座落在高七米,三层大理石基座上的,宏伟壮观的木结构的建筑在中国曾经是无一能及的。


The Hall of Supreme Harmony (TaiHeDian).

The hall was first built in 1406 and later repaired many times. As the heart of the Forbidden City, the so-called 'Golden Carriage Palace', used to be the place where emperors received high officials and practiced their rule over the nation. Also, grand ceremonies would be held to celebrate a new emperor's ascending to the throne, emperors' birthdays and wedding ceremonies and other important occasions such as the Winter Solstice, the Chinese New Year and dispatching generals to war.

这个大殿始建于1406年随后曾多次维修。做为紫禁城心腹的太和殿也称为“金銮殿”,过去明清两代皇上用来接见王公大臣在此议政,规划整个的江山社稷。也在此举行皇帝登极即位大典、皇帝的生日及大婚、册立皇后、命将出征,还有一些其他的重要的场合,像每年的万寿节、冬至、新年,均在此接受各路官员的朝贺,和赐宴王公大臣。


Side view from on top of the terrace.

Because the Hall of Supreme Harmony was a symbol of imperial power, it was the highest structure in the nation during the Ming and Qing dynasties - no other building was allowed to be higher than it. The heavily glazed hall is 35.02 meters high (37.44 meters if rooftop decorations are counted), 63.96 meters in width and 37.2 meters in length.

因为太和殿象征着皇权,所以在明清时期他是中国最高的建筑物,其他建筑都不允许高过它。大殿高35.2米(如果算上屋顶的装饰物高37.44米),宽63.96米,长37.2米。

The emperor would arrive at the Hall of Supreme Harmony amidst ceremonial music, drum-beating and firecrackers. He would them take his place on the throne and listen to a reading of congratulatory messages from his palace courtiers. Civil and military officials would all kneel before him proclaiming : "Long Live Your Majesty".

There are in total 72 pillars standing in six rows to support the roof. Each of the pillars supporting the hall was made from a single piece of wood, about 18 metres high.

皇上会在一段正式的乐曲,和炮竹击鼓声中步入太和殿。然后座到他自己的金銮宝座上,听人朗读各朝臣的贺词。所有的官员大臣都要跪在他前面齐声说“陛下万岁!”。

总共有72根柱子排成六排支撑着屋顶。每一个柱子都是一根18米高的独立整木。

Along the three-tier marble terrace stairs, there are 18 bronze Dings, a type of ancient chinese vessel, to represent the 18 provinces of the nation (as was then).

On the terrace, which is luxuriously balustraded, a bronze crane and a bronze tortoise can be seen.

沿着这三层台阶,有18个铜鼎,一种中国古代的容器,象征着当时的18个省区。

在广阔的基台上围有奢华的汉白玉石雕栏杆,还可以看到一对青铜龟和青铜鹤。

They were placed there to expect everlasting rule and longevity. The marble Rigui (sundial), in the east and the JiaLiang (an ancient measuring vessel) in the west were placed there to show that the emperors were just and fair.

它们放在那都寓意着长寿和江山永固的意思。在东边还有“日晷”(古时的计时器)和西边的“嘉量”(古时的计量器)各一,其意为显示皇帝是公正的。

In front of the hall, there are a couple of gilded bronze vats, which were used to hold water in case of fire. A fire could be lit under the vat in winter to stop the water from freezing. There are 308 vats in total in the Forbidden City.

在大殿前,有一对镀金的青铜大缸,它是用来装水的以防火灾。在大缸下面是可以点火的为了防止水冬天结冰。在紫禁城里总共有308个大缸。

It took 136 days to bake the floor tiles before they were immersed in tung oil for another 49 days and then polished; not only to look beautiful, but also to sound nice when walked upon.

The doors and windows are decorated with brass panels embossed with designs of dragons playing in the clouds.

地面铺的地砖,要经过136天的烧制,然后放入桐油再49天,然后再抛光打磨。这不仅仅是为了看着美观,而且当走在上面的时候也会发出非常清脆悦耳的声音。

门窗上都用黄铜的面板装饰,上面设计的有翔龙戏珠的浮雕。



Next : The Hall of Supreme Harmony, part 2

Forbidden City
Introduction

Forbidden City
: Introduction
Forbidden City : History
Forbidden City : Layout
Forbidden City : Map
Getting there

The Meridian Gate (outside)
The Meridian Gate (inside)
The First Courtyard
The Gate of Supreme Harmony

The Second Courtyard
The Hall of Supreme Harmony (part 1)
The Hall of Supreme Harmony (part 2)
The Hall of Complete Harmony
The Hall of Preserving Harmony

The Large Stone Carving

The Gate of Celestial Purity
The Hall of Celestial Purity
The Hall of Celestial and Terrestrial Union
The Hall of Terrestrial Tranquility
The Imperial Garden
The Imperial Garden (part 2)

The Exhibition Halls
The 9 Dragon Screen
Other Places of Interest

Doorways
Doorways (part 2)
Pots
Sculptures
Decorative Tiles
Roofs
Beams and Ceilings
Windows and Doors
Gorgoyles
Ballustrades
Walls & Screens

Sunset at the Forbidden City

Beijing Guide


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