Ming Tomb

                                             Ming Tombs-Beijing

                   

Ming Tombs is the cemetery of the 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty(1368-1644).Covering an area of 80 square kilometers, its about 50 kilometers away from Beijing city proper.

Construction of the Ming Tombs started in 1409 and ended in 1644, when the Ming Dynasty collapsed. It took 200 plus years to build the Ming Tombs from beginning to end.13 imperial tombs, 7 concubines? tombs and a eunuch?s tomb are scattered in the valley.

Dingling Tomb


Located at the eastern foot of the Dayu Mountain, Dingling is the joint burial tomb of the 13th Ming emperor zhu yijun and his two empresses. Zhu yijun(1563-1620), whose reign title was Wanli and posthumous title was Shenzong, ascended the throne at the age of 10 and ruled for 48 years until he died at the age of 58. It took six years to build Dingling, construction of which started in Nov. 1584 and ended in June 1590. Dingling covers an area of 180,000 square meters.

The Underground Palace of Dingling is the only one of the Ming Tombs excavated so far. With the approval of State Council, the trial excavation started in May 1956 and was finished one year later. With a total floor space of 1,195 square meters, the Underground Palace is composed of five stone chambers: the front chamber, the middle chamber, the rear chamber and the left and right annex chambers. More than 3,000 pieces of cultural relics were unearthed from Dingling. In 1959 Dingling Museum was set up at the original site and was opened to the public.
 
 
Changling Tomb

Changling Tomb ?Emperor Yongles Tomb?ranks the first among the thirteen Ming Mausoleums. Construction of Changling started in 1409 (the third year when Emperor Yongle issued an order to build Beijing Imperial Palace).It is the joint burial mausoleum of Emperor Yongle and his empress. With a history of about 600 years, it has been in good condition and remains resplendent. Because the project was massive and complex, huge amounts of manpower, material resources and financial resources were invested to construct Changling Tomb. It took as long as four years to construct the underground palace alone.

Changling Tomb, built the earliest among the 13 Ming Mausoleums, is the largest and most magnificent as well as the best-preserved one.

Lingen Hall is the place where the heir emperors offered sacrifices to memorize Emperor Yongle. It is a double-eave structure with hip roof and the ground is paved with golden bricks. Sixty huge pillars and all wooden structural components are made of Jinsi Nanmu (a kind of rare and hard wood), which makes Lingen Hall antique and unique.The bronze statue of Emperor Yongle, sitting in the throne carved with nine dragons, is extremely lifelike.

Inside the Lingen Hall, hundreds of pieces of rare jewelry unearthed from the Underground Palace of Dingling are on display the on-the-spot videotape on excavating the Underground Palace is broadcast. They may shed some new light on the profound mystery of the Underground Palace.
 

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