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Classical Gardens in Suzhou

Suzhou, a cutural and historical city in east China,Jiangsu Province. It is China's well-known "city of gardens", which tops all others in both the number and the artistry of gardens. Suzhou, a city to the south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River, enjoys a worldwide reputation for its delicate and classical gardens. Most of the gardens were built for private use by aristocrats and rich businessmen and date back to the sixth Century BC. Garden design went through an active period during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). By the time of the latter years of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), a large number of classical gardens were spread across Suzhou as well as its suburbs. Ten of these gardens are still in a good state of preservation, including the Humble Administrator's Garden (Zhuozheng Garden) , the Lingering Garden (Liu Garden) , the Garden of the Master of the Nets (Wangshi Garden), the Villa with Embracing Beauty (Huanxiu Mountain Villa), the Blue Wave Pavilion (Canglang Pavilion) , the Lion Grove Garden (Shizilin), the Garden of Pleasance (Yi Garden), the Couple's Garden Retreat (Ou Garden) and others. These gardens demonstrate the typical features of Suzhou's classical gardens in layout, structure, design, style, use of color, decoration and furniture. For this reason they have been included in UNESCO's World Heritage List since the end of 1997.

As outstanding examples of southern China's private gardens, Suzhou's classical gardens are noted for their exquisite design and layout. Landscape and buildings are perfectly integrated, to create a great harmony between man and nature. The Suzhou garden originated from the desire to retire from the strife of officialdom and to shun from worldly affairs. It seeks the return to Nature and the cultivation of temperament. In Taoist philosophy and the refinement of culture underlies the theme of the garden. Hills and waters,flowers and trees,pavilion, terraces,towers and halls constitute the basic garden elements,while the prominent tone is expressed in the dark colour of roof tiles,the grey of bricks,and chestnut brown of wooden pillars.

Suzhou garden is the Nature in nutshell, which occupy a unique and irreplaceable position in the history of world landscape gardening, and have high value for the study of Chinese landscape gardening, architecture, culture, aesthetics, philosophy and folklore. Its human interest also lies in that the architect, philosopher, poet, painter, and common folk can all find in it the idea,the flavour,the lines and the rhythm. The park brings together well-preserved ancient Chinese calligraphy handwriting, but also the valuable works of art, with a high heritage value. In addition, the classical gardens of Suzhou as one of the Dizhai Garden Residence Garden, the building regulations but also reflects the ancient Chinese people living off southern way of life and ritual practices pro, is the understanding and study of ancient South China Folk kind of information. To those tourists desiring to understand China, Suzhou garden is the best museum.

Classical Gardens in Suzhou
Classical Gardens in Suzhou

Edited By Athena Lee
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