The Last Chinese Dynasty
A lot of people have been bugging me to see our Chinese sideboard, and I think I've made you wait long enough. So, to finish the month, here it is.
Please read about our trip to the warehouse here.
Yesterday the mail came. Okay, the mail doesn't only come on Thursdays. Let me rephrase: Yesterday, we got some mail. We have a mail slot in the window frame of our garage window. The mail gets pushed through the slot, and falls into a basket. When we get home, we go into our garage to get the mail.
Within our pile of mail yesterday was the Certificate of Antiquity for our "Beijing Buddha", from Kuda Furniture. It was written on October 17, 2004, and stated that our cabinet was 120 years old and made of elm. I am sure they didn't pinpoint the exact year to 1884, but that's the number I'll use from now on.
Since our cabinet is from the 1880's, it was therefore created during the Qing Dynasty, which began in 1644 and ended in 1911 with the fall of the Manchus. I'm not sure what happened between 1912 and 1949 in China, but there was civil war during some or all of those years. Whatever was happening, it all ended on October 1, 1949.
Fifty-six years ago tomorrow, Mao Zedong stood before an enormous gathering at Tiananmen Square and declared China to be communist, creating a national central government of the People's Republic of China. In the past there has been tragedy and controversial activities by the Chinese army surrounding events at Tiananmen Square, particularly the student protests of 1989. But tomorrow is much different.
Tomorrow, October 1, China celebrates National Day followed by a week-long parade of national pride.