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|Location||Beijing, The Forbidden City, China map|
|Date||1406 to 1430 timeline|
|Construction System||wood timber with tile roofs|
|Context||urban palace complex|
|Notes||"Pavilion of Supreme Harmony" or "Hall of Supreme Harmony"|
|Discussion||Taihe Dian Commentary
"The Hall of the Taihe Dian, the main hall of the Forbidden City, is 27 m (90 ft) high, 64 m (210 ft) wide and 37 m (120 ft) deep. It has a roof with double eaves and is decorated with carved dragons and phoenixes, most of which are gilded. The building is raised on a three-tiered terrace, 8 m (26 ft) high, enclosed by marble balustrades, whilst those around the same courtyard were kept lower so as to set off the magnificence of the hall.
"The red walls, pillars and yellow glazed roof-tiles, and the dougong and beams decorated with dark-green designs of dragons, phoenixes and geometric figures, are conspicuous against the grey background of Beijing. Begun in 1406, the fourth year of the reign of Yongle (Ming dynasty), the City was completed fourteen years later; partial reconstruction took place during the period of the Qing dynasty. Twenty-four emperors lived in and ruled China from the Forbidden City over nearly 500 years."
Sir Banister Fletcher. A History of Architecture. p699.
Sources on Taihe Dian
Francis D. K. Ching. Architecture: Form, Space, and Order. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1979. ISBN 0-442-21535-5. LC 79-18045. NA2760.C46. aerial perspective, section, p121. A nice graphic introduction to architectural ideas. Updated 1996 edition available at Amazon.com
Sir Banister Fletcher. A History of Architecture. Boston: Butterworths, 1987. ISBN 0-408-01587-X. NA200.F63 1987. discussion, p699. The classic text of architectural history. Updated edition available at Amazon.com
Lawrence G. Liu. Chinese Architecture. New York: Rizzoli International Publications, 1989. plan drawing, p252. section drawing, p252.
Henri Stierlin. Comprendre L'Architecture Universelle. Paris: Office du Livre S.A. Fribourg (suisse), 1977. plan drawing of site, p315. plan drawing of forbidden city, p314.
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