Jingfu Ge (Hall of Utmost Blessing):A Buddhist temple named the Night-blooming Cereus Building stood here when the Summer Palace was called the Garden of Clear Ripples. Burned down in 1860 by the Anglo-French Allied Forces, it was rebuilt into what is now the Hall of Utmost Blessing. The front of the building is a spacious hall where the Empress Dowager enjoyed watching the moon or the spring showers, and received foreign envoys. Peace talks between the Communist Party Central Committee and the Nationalist Government of Nanjing were held here in 1949.

Huacheng Ge, Duobao Liuli Ta (Tower Overlooking Flowers and the Glazed Tile Pagoda of Many Treasures): The Tower Overlooking Flowers and its adjacent structures were built during Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1736-1795). The Anglo-French Allied Forces razed these structures to the ground in 1860. Only the Glazed Tile Pagoda of Many Treasures, the stone carvings, and the foundations of the other buildings survived.

The octahedral Glazed Tile Pagoda of Many Treasures is 16 meters high with seven storeys. Decorated with glazed tiles of seven colors, the body of the pagoda is supported by a white marble base. In front of the pagoda stands a stone monument with inscriptions written by Emperor Qianlong, “An Ode to Longevity Hill and the Pagoda of Many Treasures” carved in four languages: Chinese, Mongolian, Manchurian and Tibetan.

Huazhongyou (Strolling through a Picture Scroll):Originally built in the reign of Emperor Qianlong and burned down by the Anglo-French Allied Forces in 1860, these structures were rebuilt in the reign of Emperor Guangxu. The central structure is a two-storey octahedral building, with two pavilions and two towers to both its east and west. At the back are a white stone gateway and a smaller hall of three rooms. All these structures are linked by hillside corridors. As these structures were built on the side of the hill they present an all-encompassing view of the surrounding area. Walking along the corridors while enjoying the breath-taking scenery gives one the feeling of being inside a painting, hence the name “Strolling through a Picture Scroll”.

Xieqiu Xuan (Painting the Autumn Chamber):Painting the Autumn Chamber lies to the east of Longevity Hill. Built in the 20th year of Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1755) and burned down in 1860 by the Anglo-French Allied Forces, the chamber was rebuilt under Emperor Guangxu. The front hall is composed of three rooms built on top of a high base, and is linked to two side pavilions called “Watching the Living Beings” and “Seeking the Clouds” by uphill corridors. Lying in all its splendor amidst a forest on the hill, the chamber was a wonderful vantage point from which to enjoy the autumn views.

Ziqi Donglai Chengguan (Purple Cloud Tower):This tower was built during Emperor Qianlong's reign (1736-1795). The inscriptions on the stele to the south mean “Purple Cloud from the East”, a phrase from a story about ancient Chinese philosopher Laozi trying to get through a major military pass. The inscription on the stele to the north means “ Rise of Rosy Clouds in Chicheng Mountain”, a famous line written by Sun Chuo (314-371), a writer of the Jin Dynasty, in his verse “An Ode to Tiantai Mountain”. The gate tower was a scenic spot as well as a pass for sectioned defense within the garden.

Shanxian Si (Shanxian Temple):Originally built during Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1736-1795), this was a Buddhist temple located on the east side of the back of Longevity Hill. In 1860, the Anglo-French Allied Forces razed the temple to the ground. Only the front gate and one side building survived. Shanxian was one of the ten disciples of Buddha Sakyamuni.

Yunhui Si (Clouds Gathering Temple):Originally built during the reign of Emperor Qianlong, the main hall had a square structure, which was named the “True Source of Fragrant Sea”. It was one of the few wooden structures to survive the fire set by the Anglo-French Allied Forces. The original bronze statue of Buddha Pilu, which existed when the Summer Palace was still the Garden of Clear Ripples, stands inside the hall.

Hui Ting (Pavilion of Rich Foliage):Originally built during Emperor Guangxu’s reign (1875-1908) and popularly called the “Double Pavilion”, the Pavilion of Rich Foliage in fact comprises two hexagonal pavilions. Built to facilitate sightseeing, it is also a scenic spot in its own right.

Chongcui Ting (Pavilion of Multi-Layered Greenery):Originally built during the reign of Emperor Qianlong, this was a hall without walls under a traditional roof. Burned down in 1860 by the Anglo-French Allied Forces, the pavilion was restored during Emperor Guangxu’s reign (1875-1908). Built to facilitate sightseeing, it is also a scenic spot in its own right.

Yichi Yunzai (Pavilion of Forgotten Desires and Accompanying Clouds):Originally built during Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1736-1795), this was a hall without walls under a traditional roof. Burned down in 1860 by the Anglo-French Allied Forces, it was restored during Emperor Guangxu’s reign (1875-1908). It got its name from a line in a poem entitled The Pavilion on the River, by Du Fu(712-770), a great poet of the Tang Dynasty. According to the poem, “The water flows fast but the mind is at rest, clouds are there but desires are forgotten”.

Hushan Zhenyi (True Meanings of the Scenery):Originally built during Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1736-1795), this was a hall without walls under a traditional roof. Burned down in 1860 by the Anglo-French Allied Forces, it was restored during Emperor Guangxu’s reign (1875-1908). Standing here and looking to the west, one can have a full view of the beautiful scenery of the Western Hills.

Lenong Xuan (Chamber of the Pleasure of Farming):It is said that this chamber was built on the orders of the Empress Dowager for the purpose of experiencing the pleasures of farm life. The walls were built with gray bricks and the roof was covered with stone slates. Even though the structure has the attraction of a farmhouse, it still possesses the charm of a structure in an imperial garden.

Cao Ting (Straw Pavilion):Built during Emperor Guangxu’s reign (1875-1908), this pavilion is a focal point in the area around the Chamber of the Pleasure of Farming. Simple but graceful, it is a beautiful structure topped with straws and thin stone slates but unfurnished by oil paintings and murals.

Yishou Tang (Hall of Increasing Longevity):The main hall, originally built with five bays during Emperor Guangxu’s reign (1875-1908) and given the name Pine Spring Chamber, it served as the pharmacy for the imperial court. Chairman Mao Zedong stayed here when he came to the Summer Palace in March 1949.

Yuanlang Zhai (Round and Bright Chamber):Originally built during Emperor Qianlong’s reign (1736-1795) and burned down by the Anglo-French Allied Forces, it was rebuilt in the reign of Emperor Guangxu. The words “Round” and “Bright” represent the benevolence and wisdom of the emperors.

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