Yangshi Lei Archives, 3. Site Plan of Paiyun Dian (the Cloud-Dispelling Hall) and Foxiangge (the Pavilion of the Fragrance of the Buddha) of the Summer Palace


Shown here is the site plan of two of the most important building complexes in the Summer Palace, the Paiyun Dian (Cloud-Dispelling Hall) and Foxiangge (The Pavilion of the Fragrance of the Buddha). The Summer Palace is a vast landscape of gardens, palaces, and lakes in imperial Beijing, and the Paiyun Dian and Foxiangge are the most complete architectural arrangements at the palace. They also represent the richest building group on a medial axis. The layout progresses upwards, layer by layer in an orderly way, from the Yunhui Yuyu Archway (Archway of Glorious Clouds and Jade Eaves) to the Paiyunmen (the Cloud-Dispelling Gate), and the Cloud-Dispelling Hall, which stands at the center. The Dehui Dian (the Hall of Glorious Virtue) comes next, then the Pavilion of the Fragrance of the Buddha, and two glazed archways, Zongxiangjie (the Realm of Popular Fragrance) and Zhihuihai (the Sea of Wisdom). The entire scene is imposing and lofty with brilliant gold and green colors, with the gardens, temples, and palaces forming an integral whole. This scenic area was built in the 15th year (1750) of the Qianlong reign, but it was burned down and destroyed by the allied Anglo-French troops in 1860 during the Second Opium War (1856−60). During the Guangxu reign (1875−1908) it was restored to the present condition. The Yangshi Lei Archives contain architectural plans, models, and documents of the Lei family, who for some 200 years were designers of imperial buildings, tombs, and gardens during the Qing Dynasty (1644−1911), particularly of the Summer Palace. The Summer Palace is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

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1 sheet ; 132.7 x 97.7 centimeters

Last updated: November 25, 2014