Home / Travel / Travel

Lugou Bridge: a witness to history | Updated: 2011-07-08 12:30
Lugou Bridge: a witness to history

Stone lions of different sizes and postures on Lugou Bridge. [Photo/]

In his world-renowned book Travels of Marco Polo, the Italian traveler Marco Polo wrote, "Over this river there is a very fine stone bridge, so fine indeed, that it has very few equals in the world."

The bridge to which Polo was referring is Lugou Bridge, or "Marco Polo Bridge" to Westerners.

Lugou Bridge, located 15 kilometers southwest of Beijing, is probably the oldest multi-arched stone bridge in Beijing.

Spanning over the Yongding River, the bridge is 266.5 meters in length and 7.5 meters in width. It was first built during the Jin Dynasty in 1189, but was destroyed by floods during the reign of Emperor Kangxi (1662-1722) in the Qing Dynasty. The emperor ordered his subjects to rebuild the bridge in 1698.

What makes the bridge especially famous is its exemplification of stone sculpture. The bridge is supported on 280 pillars, on each one of which stands stone lions in various postures. There are altogether 501 stone lions, totally different in size and posture. An old saying in Beijing says that there are countless lions on Lugou Bridge.

Many scholars argue that it is probably the most important bridge in modern Chinese history. On July 7, 1937, the first shot of the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression (1937-45) rang out beside Lugou Bridge, an occurrence which is known as the "Lugou Bridge Incident." From that point onward, the destiny of China was changed: while seventy-four years ago the bridge witnessed the outbreak of war, it now presides over the peace and happiness in which Chinese people live. It still stands there, quietly.

Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Next

Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349