Tian'anmen Square is the
largest open-air square in the world. It is located
in the center of Beijing, by Chang'an Boulevard.
standing to the north of Tian'anmen Square
is 33.7 meters in height. It was the main entrance to
the Forbidden City, palace for emperors of Ming and
Qing dynasties. The gate was originally built in 1420
during the Ming Dynasty, called Chengtianmen(carrying
the heaven gate). It was destroyed by lightning in 1457,
and was completely burned to the ground, and was rebuilt
in 1456. However, in 1644, the gate suffered severe
damage during the fighting between Lizicheng and the
early Qing emperors. In 1651, Emperor Shunzhi of the
Qing Dynasty carried out extensive renovations to the
damaged building and renamed the gate Tian'anmen.
On October 1st, celebration of the founding of the People's
Republic of China was held in the square, and Chairmen
Mao declared the event on the Tian'anmen
Gate. Tian'anmen Gate is featured on the
emblem of the People's Republic of China.
The gate looks more magnificent
in the sunshine because of its imperial roof decorations
of glittering glazed tile on the roof. In front of the
gate are a pair of lions, and Golden Water Bridge and
white Huabiao, two stone columns made of white marble
sculptured with dragon designs.
Tian'anmen Gate was open to
the public in 1988. Today, in Tian'anmen
Square, travelers can take part in the national flag
raising ceremony every morning.