Palace of Heavenly Purity

Palace of Heavenly PurityThe emperors lived in this palace in the Ming and early Qing dynasties. After the reign of Emperor Yongzheng, the building was used as an audience chamber for receiving envoys from vasal states who presented their tributes to the emperor. Foreign ambassadors were also received here. The big mirrors and red candles are all part of the original furniture. The mirror was for vanity purpose and warding off evil spirits. On the west was the emperor’s cloak room. It was also used for holding mourning service before the remains of his deceased predecessor.  The wedding ceremony of the last emperor Puyi was held herein 1922.

Far back on the wall you see a plaque bearing an inscription which reads “Be open and above-board,” written by the first emperor of the Qing Dynasty. When the peasant insurgents broke into Beijing to-wards the end of the Ming Dynasty, the last Ming Emperor Chongzhen fled from here to the Coal Hill Park where he hanged himself.

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