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Ancient Observatory

Introducing to Ancient Observatory, Ancient Observatory Guide, Ancient Observatory Travel Guide
Article from Ministry of Culture P.R. China

The Ancient Observatory, built in the Yuan Dynasty (1271 -- 1368), is a famous ancient astronomical observatory whose original name is the Sitiantai. Ancient Observatory was destroyed in the war when the ruler of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) seized hold of Beijing City. The remains were sent to be preserved in Nanjing. In the seventh year (1422) of the Zhengtong reign during the Ming Dynasty, it was rebuilt and then renamed the Star-Observation Platform. A set of apparatuses were reproduced and buildings like the Ziwei Hall and Loufang House, etc., were rebuilt In the Chongzhen reign (1629 -- 1638), Xu Guangqi and Li Tianjing made several apparatuses, such as the Plane Solarium, the Hou's Clock, telescope and sandglass, etc. In the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), some more apparatus were added , and the Star-Observation Platform was renamed as the Observatory.

The Ancient Observatory is a brick hathpace building transformed from the Southeast Turret of the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). In the Ming Dynasty, there were huge copper apparatuses such as armillary sphere and celestial globe, etc., on the platform and the Ziwei Hall, and clepsydra house, solarium hall installed with apparatuses such as gnomon, clepsydra and so on. At the beginning of the Qing Dynasty, the technologies of western countries were used to make the apparatuses as celestial body instrument, equator theodolite, ecliptic theodolite, quadrant instrument, altazimuth, etc. These apparatuses bear a style in the times of Louis 14th in France with a particular taste in both shape and decorative patterns, which are still displayed on the Ancient Observatory.

The astronomical apparatuses of the Ming Dynasty are treasured up in the Zijinshan Planetarium and the Nanjing Museum respectively. The Ancient Observatory is a historic evidence for the great astronomical achievements in ancient China. It is famous far and wide for its long history and the well-preserved apparatuses and equipment.

Quick Facts on Ancient Observatory 

Name: Ancient Observatory 
Location: 2Km from Downtown Beijing
Dates: Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644)
Best Time to Visit: September to October
Recommended Time for a Visit: 5 Hours
Opening Hours: 09:00 - 17:00 (Closed on Mondays)
Admission Fee: CNY 20

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