Qing Dynasty Display Room of 'Decrees and Regulations' and Cultural Artifacts
This is located in the eastern corridor of the Qianqing Palace. The items displayed here were used by the Qing-dynasty emperors to carry out affairs of state, the hold ceremonies and rituals, and to go hunting. Exhibited here are four main different kinds of objects: personal treasures of the Emperor, musical instruments of the court, clothes of the Empress, and weapons and arms.
Qing Palace Exhibition Hall of Toys
This exhibition displays toys that were mostly made in the eighteenth and ninetheenth centuries and given to the Qing court by Switzerland, France, England, and Germany. Also exhibited are some items made by the Qing Palace Workshops and some made by the people of Guangdong. The toys can be divided into two types, mechanized and general toys. The mechanized category includes objects that have an internal mechanism that makes them move: birds call out, animals move, and so on. Some of the general toys were actually used by children; some were given to the court to be used as decoration in the halls.
Hall of Bronzes
This is located in two palaces called the Zhai Palace and the Jingren Palace. Some 400 pieces are exhibited that range from the Shang and Zhou periods to the Warring States period. In the Shang and Zhou slave society, bronzes were regarded as ceremonial objects that differentiated one's status. By the Warring States period, items appeared that were actually used by the then appearing feudal system such as coins, stamps or seals, tallies, measuring devices and so on.
Hall of Ceramics
This is in the two palaces called the Chengqian Palace and the Yonghe Palace, and contains four rooms that exhibit around 700 objects. China is the homeland of ceramics. 'Painted pottery' already existed some 6,000 years ago here; by the time of the Shang dynasty, primitive porcelains were being fired; after another 1,000 years, actual porcelain was made during the Eastern Han period.
Four Treasures of the Scholar's Studio
Zhongcui Palace was one of the halls in Six Palaces of the East, but now it has been designated as the Hall of the Four Treasures of the Scholar's Studio. These include brushes, ink, paper, and inkstands, each of which has its aesthetics and connoisseurship. For example, the manufacture of ink and inkstands can require of the maker a high degree of technical as well as aesthetic skill. Because of this, great value is placed on fine inks and inkstands in China. The paper and inkstands, brushes and ink that are exhibited here come from many dynasties. Displayed here are the famous 'Hu Brush,' 'Hui Ink,' 'Xuanzhi or Xuan paper,' and 'Duan inkstands.'
Ming-Qing Minor Arts and Crafts Gallery
A wealth of Ming- and Qing-dynasty crafts items collected by the Palace is exhibited in the Jingyang Palace. The diversity of items here includes lacquer objects, jade objects, glass objects, enamel objects, gold and other metallic objects, as well as bamboo, wood, and carved ivory.
The Clock Gallery
Fengxian Hall is where the Qing-dynasty emperors made offerings to the tablets of their ancestors; now it has been opened up and made into the Clock Gallery. These clocks were mainly collected during the Qianlong and Jiaqing periods of the Qing dynasty (1736-1820). Some were made in Guangzhou and Suzhou, as well as the workshop within the Palace, others came from England, France, and Switzerland. Clocks made in China were mostly decorated with gold, pearls, jade, and gems. Their form reflected traditional architectural forms such as pagodas, towers, and miniature landscapes. The clocks of England, France and other countries in turn imitated Western styles and architecture.
Hall of Paintings
This is located in Huangji Hall and the Ningshou Palace. Around 100,000 paintings are kept here that range in date from the Jin to the Qing dynasty and that include paintings and calligraphy of many famous masters. October in Beijing has fresh air with a suitable temperature and low humidity. As a result, works of the Jin, Tang, Song, and Yuan dynasties are generally exhibited every year at this time. Some of the world-famous treasures that are exhibited include ones by Lu Ji (261-303, Jin dynasty), Yan Liben (601-673, Tang dynasty), Gu Hongzhong (Five Dynasties Southern Tang painter), Zhang Zeduan (uncertain dates of birth and death, famous Song-dynasty painter), and so on, as well as Yan Zhenqing (709?785, Tang-dynasty calligrapher), Liu Gongquan (778-865, Tang-dynasty calligrapher), Mi Fu (1051-1107, Northern Song painter and calligrapher), and so on. Ming- and Qing-dynasty painters are also exhibited at certain times in the year.
Inscriptions, rubbings, and seals from various dynasties are displayed in the Inscriptions Gallery of the Huangji Hall.
These are displayed in three halls that were formerly for other purposes but were opened up to form this exhibition. On display here are gold and silver, jade and exotic items collected by the Qing court. These were all used for various purposes including ceremonial, sacrificial, as clothing, as ornament, and in daily life, as well as to adorn the rooms of the court.
More Museums in Beijing City