This is the second of two films made by Chinese Central Television about the Forbidden City in Beijing. Its building and history were dealt with last week, and this week we look at its fortunes since the fall of the last Emperor in 1913.
On the eve of the Palace’s 600th anniversary a massive restoration programme was undertaken and these films are part of the publicity around that. The whole restoration was due to complete this year (2020), after 17 years years of hard work.
From 1913 until 1947 with the emergence of the Communist party as the government was a particularly turbulent time in Chinese history and this also affected the Palace, which was at first neglected, then had its treasures evacuated to Tibet and Taiwan to prevent them falling into the hands of the Japanese invaders.
Once the political situation stabilized somewhat it has been possible to reestablish the Palace as one of the greatest museums in the world, holding well over 1.5 million objects of art of various sorts, although another 1/2 million remain in the mirror Palace Museum in Taiwan.
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