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The Third Activity Report by the Ancient Wall Cultural Club

Captains: Wang Yanqi, Bai Lixuan

Time: November 18th, 2018

Location: hiking along the Ming City Wall ( Zhonghua Gate - Wuding Gate -Dongshui Pass)

Guiding teacher: Professor Wang Xulin

Participants: Wang Yuanxuan, Bai Lixuan, Zhuang Qinyao, Liu Yang, Xu Renqi, Li Jikai, Yan Chaowen, Ding Yifan, Jiang Xinyi, Hang Yu, Lu Yihan, Li Shangze, Liu Minxing, Lu Yanbing, Li Yutong

The Ancient City Wall Club’s third inspection of the city wall was carried out in the breeze and drizzle, which added charm and fun. Professor Wang Yun "does not mind the rain in the city, the rain adds beauty to the scenery".


This activity is hiking along the Ming Dynasty City Wall, the route was from Zhonghua Gate Wuding Gate, then East Water Pass. Professor Wang Xulin was invited to explain the history and development of city walls along the way. Up at the castle at Zhonghua Gate, the professor pointed to the direction of the Dabao Temple: "this section of the city wall is actually a dividing line. You see, this section represents the history of Nanjing, who has a profound cultural heritage. Everywhere are places of interest and historic sites, the Dabao Temple, and the Rainflower Tower, Fang Xiaoru Tomb, Niushoushan Buddhist Holy Land and so on. " The professor turned aruond again: "the other side is Nanjing today, where there are modern tall buildings, reflecting the economic prosperity of Nanjing."


The Zhonghua Gate is one of the thirteen Ming city gates in the Ming Dynasty in Nanjing, formerly known as Jubaomen. It is the largest existing gate in China, and it is also the most well-preserved and complex fortress urn in the world. Its construction scale was the second only to Tongji Gate (now not existent), it has the name of "the first urn city under the sky". The Zhonghua Gate is an important object material for the study of ancient Chinese military facilities due to its strict layout and unique structure. It occupies an important position in military, historical, cultural and urban construction history.


Zhonghua Gate was once the southern gate of Jiangning Government House, the capital of the Southern Tang Dynasty, and Jiankang Government House, the capital of Jiangning in the Southern Song Dynasty. It was expanded from two to eight years of Hongwu (1369 to 1375) in the Ming Dynasty, and it was called Jubomen. In 1931 (20 years in Minguo), the National Government changed its name to Zhonghua Gate. On the eve of the double Tenth Festival, Jiang Jieshi set up a plaque and opened the East and West Zhonghua Gate on both sides respectively to satisfy the two-way vehicular traffic between the north and the south. In January 1988, it was listed as a national key cultural relic protection unit. In November 2012, the Ming city wall of Nanjing, where the Zhonghua gate is located, was listed as the lead city for the "Ming and Qing city walls of China" project on the list of World Heritage sites in China.


Zhonghua Gate Castle to the east, through the east of the Old Gate, from the city walls, Nanjing buildings with traditional characteristics stand one by one, Professor Wang introduced: the Old Gate East is the ancient Nanjing was the area where dignitaries and the literati inhabited, it is the cultural center of Nanjing.


Along the way, Professor Wang talked about Nanjing history and culture with good humor, we passed Wuding Gate and arrived at to Dongshui Pass.


Dongshui Pass is one of the two Ming Dynasty capital gates in the Ming Dynasty in Nanjing, opposite to the Xishui Pass. It is located on the west side of Tongji Pass Bridge, Longpan Middle Road, Qinhuai District, Nanjing City. It is in the Qinhuai Temple’s Qinhuai scenery belt, and is the entrance of the Qinhuai River to Nanjing City and the only lock entrance to the city walls of Nanjing as well. The old name of Dongshui Pass used to be called Shangshui Gate, which was first built in the period of Yang Wu's construction of the city wall, it was expanded on this basis when the Ming Dynasty built the Ming city wall, and was torn down in the 1960s under the influence of the storm of demolishing the city.

Dongshui Pass is a masonry structure with three layers, each layer has 11 arches, altogether there are 33 arches. The arches are also known as "Yaoyue Cave", in ancient times, the upper and second floors were used to place soldiers and storage materials, and the lowest layer was used to regulate the water level and control floods in the Qinhuai River. The iron fence in the middle prevented the enemy from sneaking through the water access. Dongshui Pass combines the water architecture with the wall architecture, which has rarely been seen in Chinese architecture history.


Walking along the city wall in the rain was very artistic, we enjoyed the long and cultural Nanjing city wall, talking and laughing lively, the atmosphere was joyful and the time was passing quickly. We all looked forward to the next cultural tour of the city wall.