Deciphering city codes: the Central Axis of Beijing

Gate of Perpetual Stability (Yongding men): South gate of outer city

Updated: Jun 7, 2022 Print
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The Gate of Perpetual Stability (Yongding men), the front gate of Beijing’s outer city during the Ming and Qing dynasties, was built in 1553 by command of Emperor Jiajing of the Ming Dynasty, to signify “eternal stability”. Consisting of a gate tower, a battlement watchtower and a barbican, the gate is the southern starting point and a classic landmark building of Beijing’s central axis.

In 1957, the gate tower and battlement watchtower were demolished.

Aerial view of the new Gate of Perpetual Stability reconstructed in 2004 [Photo/VCG]

In 2004, the gate tower was reconstructed in accordance with architectural styles dating to the Qing Dynasty Emperor Qianlong (1736-1795) period and with survey data of the gate in the Republic of China. The reconstruction made it a landmark of all of Beijing.

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