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Hall of Dispelling Clouds

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Hall of Dispelling Clouds, Paiyundian in Chinese, was built on a high terrace, and has 21 rooms. Inside the hall are a throne, screens, tripods and mandarin fans. On a platform you will see bronze dragons, phoenixes and tripods. At the foot of the platform there are four bronze water vats, the ancient form of fire extinguishers. The hall was surrounded by galleries and flanked by annex halls. In the forecourt there is a pool and marble bridges.

Function
Built in 1750 and rebuilt in 1890,the Hall of Dispelling Clouds was the place for Empress Dowager Cixi's birthday celebrations on the 15th of the tenth lunar month each year. On that day all high-ranking officials would stand outside the archway and kowtow to her to pay their respects. The hall was lavishly furnished, but Cixi used it only once a year. The arts and crafts on display were gifts from the ministers for her 70th birthday. The two annex halls are also warehouses for the gifts.


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