CCTV.com - CNTV English - CCTV News

A tale of 12 bronzes from Yuanmingyuan

06-24-2010 08:47 BJT

Watch Video

Play Video

Four bronze animal heads looted from Yuanmingyuan Garden and purchased back at auctions are on display in Nanjing in east China's Jiangsu Province. It's been a bumpy and dramatic journey to find their way home. Hopes remain high that their destiny will also be shared by those yet to be recovered from abroad.

This is the Tiger head currently causing an uproar in Nanjing. Along with three other animal bronze heads, the quartet comprises one third of a Zodiac fountain once situated in the Garden of Eternal Spring in Beijing's Yuanmingyuan Garden.

Commissioned by Qing Emperor Qianlong, the statues adorned a clock that used water to report time... that is, until one night in 1860, when invading Anglo-French forces ransacked and burnt the palaces reducing them to rubble. That's when the animal heads were lost.

Photo of bronze animal heads
Photo of bronze animal heads (File photo)

Four of the heads are now in a historical exhibit in Nanjing. The China Poly Group acquired the heads of ox, tiger, and monkey in April and May of 2000. The pig head was bought and donated to the Mainland by Macao Gaming magnate Stanley Ho in 2003. Ho also bought and donated the fifth piece -- that of a horse head -- for 8.9 million US dollars in 2007.


Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program