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6/46.- Beijing, Forbidden City, Large Stone carving

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Next you should visit the Inner Court. The "Gate of Heavenly Purity" gives access to the Palace's private areas. North of the Gate sits the "Hall of Heavenly Purity", where the Ming Emperors lived.

East of this Hall is the Bronze Gallery, which used to be the study room of the Prince during the Qing Dynasty. To the west is the Ceramic Gallery, where the office of the eunuchs used to be.

North of the "Hall of Heavenly Purity" is the "Hall of Union and Peace", a smaller hall where the birthday of the Empress was celebrated. Further north is the "Hall of Earthly Tranquility", where the Ming Empresses lived. North of this Hall, the "Gate of Earthly Tranquility" gives way to the Imperial Garden. West of the Garden is the "Veranda of Red Snow", with its souvenir shop. East of the Garden is the "Lodge of Nature Cultivation", with its Rockery from South China. North of the Garden is the "Hall of Imperial Peace", with its Taoist Temple. Keep walking north and you will get to the "Obedience and Chastity Gate", walk through it and you will leave the Imperial Garden. Further north is the "Gate of Military Prowess", the north gate of the Forbidden City.

In the picture you can see the Hall of Supreme Harmony, the tallest of the halls in the Forbidden City. Here is where some of the most important ceremonies, like the enthronement of the prince, the emperor's public birthday parties, and the initiation of military expeditions, took place.

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