The Zhengyangmen or Qianmen (Front Gate) was the center gate in the south side of the old Beijing city wall. This was the gate directly south of the Forbidden City. The route the Emperor would normally have used left the palace through the Gate of Heavenly Peace (Tiananmen), and continued straight south through the Qianmen. When the city wall was torn down, two buildings that had been parts of the gate complex, one directly to the south of the other, were preserved.
The southernmost of the two buildings that were parts of the Qianmen gate complex, viewed from the northeast.
The northernmost of the two buildings that were parts of the Qianmen gate complex.
Formerly the railway station, this building directly to the east of the southernmost building of the Qianmen gate complex appears to have been broken up into shops.
Chairman Mao's mausoleum, directly to the north of the Qianmen gate complex. The Monument to the Heroes of the People, in Tiananmen Square, is visible in the distance, on the extreme right of the photo.
The Monument to the Heroes of the People, in Tiananmen Square. The line across the foreground is people waiting to get into Chairman Mao’s mausoleum. In the background is the Great Hall of the People.
Rebecca took this one of me in Tiananmen Square, with the Gate of Heavenly Peace (Tiananmen), leading into the imperial palace, behind me; notice the portrait of Chairman Mao over the gateway. This was one of the few images of Mao that I saw on public display in China. I think such images were a bit more common in 2005, but it is hard to be sure there had been a change, since I was not going back to the same places.
Copyright © 2002, Edwin E. Moïse. Revised June 22, 2005.