Hall of Dispelling Clouds (Paiyundian)
|Throne in the Hall|
The first layer of courtyard is between the Gate of Dispelling Gate and the Second Palace Gate, and there is a stone arch bridge over the rectangular pool in the center of the courtyard. The Hall of Dispelling Clouds is in the second courtyard, being the main hall of the building complex. It is on a raised terrace with marble balusters. It has a broad platform with steps in three directions. There is one pair each of bronze dragons, phoenixes, and three-footed vessels, as well as four bronze vats symmetrically on two sides under the terrace. Emperor Qianlong once promulgated the regulation that all the buildings in imperial gardens and retreats could not have yellow glazed tiles, except temples. The Hall of Dispelling Clouds is an outstanding exception. It has yellow glazed tiles decorating the roofs of the main hall and other side halls.
According to record, on the Empress Dowager's birthday (lunar October 10th), Emperor Guangxu led the princes and court officials and kowtowed to her as she sat on the "Nine-Dragon Throne" inside the main hall. The emperor kowtowed facing toward the hall and the senior court officials knelt inside, while the officials stood under the third grade outside the Gate of Dispelling Clouds. Furnishings in the Hall of Dispelling Clouds remain as festive as they originally were for celebrations of Empress Dowager Cixi's birthday. Although the treasures on display inside are fewer than those in the Hall of Benevolence and Longevity, some of them are more valuable.
At the back of the Hall of Dispelling Clouds is the Hall of Moral Glory which was once rebuilt on the basis of the Hall of Tahoden (Hall of Many Treasures) when there was still a temple. It was between the Hall of Dispelling Clouds and Tower of Buddhist Incense, and used as the place for changing clothes and resting when the emperor and empress prayed to Buddha.
To visit this place (together with Tower of Buddhist Incense), an additional charge of CNY 10 is necessary for those visitors who hold Summer Palace entrance tickets, but not necessary for through ticket holders.
Related Link: Summer Palace Travel Tips