You guys might have gotten a sense of my love affair with sloping/pitched roofs from my Coorg and mom’s garden posts. A pitched roof is one where the angle of the roof to the horizontal is at least 15 degrees. These steep roofs, seen all over Asia, are essential to protect the homes from the heavy rains. Today we take a look at some pitched roofs from Beijing. All the pics were taken during B’s trip to China in 2010.
My favorite, the Ming Dynasty tombs that were built in the 14th century. Out of the 13 tombs only 2 are open to public now; the Changling that is above ground and Dingling that is underground. Presenting the sloping roofs of Changling;
Another shot of this magnificent structure.
Next up, the Forbidden City. It was the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty.
You may remember these buildings from the movie, The Last Emperor.
A close up view of the roof tiles;
The ridges of the roofs are adorned with animal figurines. The more the number of figurines the more important the building is.
The Temple of Heaven has a different kind of a slanting roof. The roof is supported on concentric rings of pillars thus giving the structure a circular frame. Temples usually had curved roofs as they were believed to ward off evil spirits, which were considered to be straight lines.
Interestingly some of the temples in Kerala have a similar roof structure. A close up of the blue roof tiles of the Temple of Heaven.
Did you know, the different colored roofs have different meanings in Chinese architecture? The blue roof of the Temple of Heaven symbolizes the sky. Yellow is the Imperial color. So most of the roofs of Forbidden City are yellow. Buildings associated with the crown prince had green roof tiles as the green was the color of growth while that of commoners had gray.
Ok, the next pic has nothing to do with slanted roofs but how can you talk about China and not show a pic of the Great Wall? So here it is.
Ready for my next pitched roof series? Any guesses where we are going to next? Here is a hint, we are still in Asia.