Qiao Family Courtyard

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Pingyao County Government Museum is located on the middle of Zhenfujie Street. This is the biggest attraction in ancient Pingyao City. This 26,600 square meters government office compound was built in symmetrical layout.

Pingyao County Goverment Museum
Pingyao County Goverment Museum

On the main axis includes The Gate, The Ceremonial Gate, The Court Hall Complex, The entryway to a large old style house, The Civil Court, and The County Magistrate's Residence. On west side of the office compound includes a county prison and the Department of supervision. On east side of the office compound includes a garden with Flower Hall, Grain Hall, Chess Pavilion, Song Dynasty Well.

Pingyao County Goverment Museum
Pingyao County Goverment Museum

Layout of Pingyao County Goverment Museum

The Gate: It is also called " Yamen " in Chinese. It is facing South with a screen wall opposite it. It played an important role in exorcising evil spirits. The gate has a Fengshui Tower on the east and was a theater tower on the west.

Pingyao County Goverment Museum
Pingyao County Goverment Museum

The Ceremonial Gate: This gate was usually closed, only used when there was a ceremonial of welcoming new high ranking official to the office or special events. There were two side gates on each sides, the eastern door was the one normally used, the western door was for those condemned to death.

Pingyao County Goverment Museum
Pingyao County Goverment Museum

The Court Hall Complex: Facing South, this Ming Dynasty building was the principal building at the government office complex and served as the courtroom where important cases, including homicides were tried by the county magistrate and major activities were held.

Pingyao County Goverment Museum
Pingyao County Goverment Museum

The Entryway to Magistrate's Residence: No outsider allowed to enter this door. There was a "Doorman" who was responsible to pass legal documents, letters, and other items to the magistrate through this entryway.

Pingyao County Goverment Museum
Pingyao County Goverment Museum

The Civil Court: The county magistrate worked and mediated civil disputes in this Ming Dynasty building. The east side held the secretary room and records room is on the west. The secretary's office handled the county magistrate's correspondence, names cards, and invitations The records office kept track of documents, letters, and files regarding judicial lawsuits.

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