Beijing-old and new |
Fifty years ago, if you flew over Beijing and looked down on the city, it looked like an army camp.
The whole city was laid out in regular squares. In the middle was the Forbidden City-like the general's
headquarters. North, south, east and west were miles and miles of hutongs, with their traditional courtyard
houses. Seen from the air, these looked like the tens of the army's ordinary soldiers.
In many ways, the old city of Beijing looked very much like other Chinese capital cities from the past
two or three thousand years. The regular city plan with the Emperor's Palace in the center, the traditional
buildings with their wooden structures and tiled roofs, the large city walls-these were features that the city
shared with other capitals of ancient China such as Chang'an (present-day Xi'an) or Kaifeng.
Until the 1940s, the city looked very much the same as it had for centuries. However, in the 1950s the
enormous city walls were torn down. More recently, most of the old hutongs have disappeared. In their
place, a modern city of wide roads and tall skyscrapers has been rising upwards, and spreading
outwards-far beyond the area of the old capital.
army camp 军营, lay out 设计, 策划 regular 规则的, 整齐的 square 正方形; 方块
Forbidden City 紫禁城 general 将军 headquarters (单复数同)司令部, 大本营; 总部
courtyard 四合院 wooden 木制的, 木头的 structure 结构, 构造 tiled 用砖瓦覆盖的
feature 特点, 特征,特色 tear down 拆毁, 拆卸 spread 铺开, 展开 outwards 向外
beyond (指空间) 在…….的那一边, 远于