why do they call it the forbidden city

Have you ever been to do something? Of course you have! It's only natural for parents to forbid certain activities for your safety. Would you believe that there was a place in China that was for hundreds of years? It's true! It was called the
City. Today, it's no longer, so let's see what the big secret was all about! Built between 1406 and 1420, the City served as the for almost 500 years. Emperors from the Ming to the Qing used the complex in the middle of as the center of government. You might be wondering why it's called the City if it was actually an. This was no ordinary! Instead of one big building, the City consisted of almost 1,000 buildings that covered almost 8 million square feet!


The name в City" comes from the phrase Zijin Cheng, which means вPurple City. " The color purple referred to the North Star. In, the North Star was the home of the. The City was thus the : the home of the. It was в " because it was a walled city that no one could enter without permission from the. The City was home to 24 different emperors. When Puyi, the last of China, gave up his position in 1912, the City was no longer the political center of China. The City remains one of the best examples in the world of traditional palatial. Its designs have influenced architects around the world for hundreds of years. The City is enclosed by a 26-foot-high wall and a that is over 170 feet wide and over 20 feet deep.


The walls are almost 30 feet wide at their base. These features helped the emperors feel safe within the City. The overall design of the City reflects the and of the ancient emperors. For example, yellow was the color of the, so almost all roofs in the City were covered with yellow glazed tiles. In 1987, the City was declared a World Heritage Site. It's still one of the largest collections of ancient wooden structures in the world. Today, the City is home to the Museum. The museum's collection of over 1 million rare artworks and artifacts comes primarily from the Ming and Qing dynasties that used to call the City home. So how exactly does one guy obtain thousands of sex slaves?


Well, he's the emperor, so all he has to do is close his eyes and wish really hard, and imply that people might die if he doesn't get his way. It was dangerous to be beautiful in ancient China. , beautiful women were often stolen from their families to serve as the emperor's concubines в sometimes they were even offered by their families in exchange for political favor. Now, since concubines weren't actually allowed to write home or anything, all that stuff about torture, execution, and starvation probably wasn't common knowledge, so maybe families deluded themselves into believing that life at the palace would be better for their daughters than life at home.


The emperor's concubines lived in isolation from the outside world в if they got sick. Instead, they were diagnosed based on a written description of their symptoms, sort of like WebMD only with actual doctors. Not every concubine had to die with the emperor, though. That honor was reserved for favorite concubines, which means it was one of history's few professions where getting promoted was not something you celebrated with champagne and a night on the town. For regular, non-favorite concubines, it was possible to "retire" after serving a few years, and then go on to an auspicious career as a laundress or a nun, which were really your only other options.

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