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Palace Maze at Yuanmingyuan Park, near Beijing, China by T. E. Smith-Lamothe

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About This Gigapan

Taken by
T. E. Smith-Lamothe T. E. Smith-Lamothe
Explore score
Print Pricing
$8.00 to $743.00
0.05 Gigapixels
Date added
Dec 27, 2012
Date taken
Nov 13, 2011

The Qing Emperor, Qing Qianlong, in the mid-1800's, commissioned Jesuits in his court to design and construct European-styled buildings at the old Summer Palace to create a new "Garden of Perfect Brightness". The result was a complex of buildings and beautified grounds which was said to resemble Versailles, France, in size and luxury. Unfortunately, during the second Opium War in 1860, European marauders ransacked and burned the buildings in a frenzied search for treasures believed to be stored there. All that remains are ruins which are a somber, if peaceful, reminder of Imperial extravagance and chaotic Imperialist greed. One area which has been restored, albeit in concrete, not stone, is the large Palace Maze. This hand-held panorama looks from the entrance towards the pavilion at its centre --- which is always visible as one wanders, at times in frustration, within the maze. The satellite view in googlemaps shows the extent of the maze clearly.

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