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Notes on the Geography of China: The Grand Axis of Imperial Beijing: Photo 5

world pictures China: The Grand Axis of Imperial Beijing

Officials working in the Forbidden City used to enter not along the great axis but by crossing the eastern side of the moat and using the East Flowery Gate (Dongwamen). It's closed now, but tourists are still brought across the same eastern bridge, then directed around the southeast corner of the Forbidden City (shown here, with its elaborately roofed corner tower) to approach the ticket office near the Meridian Gate.

The wall is made of rammed earth faced with three layers of oversized brick. Each brick weighs more than 50 pounds and was shipped by canal from distant Shandong.

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