China's last emperor's house demolished

Updated: 2012-08-15 16:41


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The residence of Aisin-Gioro Puyi (1906-67), the last ruler of China, has become a pile of rubble, Beijing News reported.

The Western-style house, built during the Republic of China (1912-49) period in Beijing, was torn down for potential safety problems due to rainstorm damage, according to Sun Tiexiang, an official from the house and land management center of Xicheng district.

"The house does not belong to historic buildings and has not been listed as a heritage conservation unit," Sun said. But it will be rebuilt on the same site, he said.

Chen Guangzhong, a writer of culture and history, showed his regret about the destruction of the old house. "The place is a witness to an emperor turning into a citizen of the People's Republic of China," he said.

Puyi, the last emperor of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), lived in the house with his wife, Li Shuxian, from 1963 until his death in 1967. His abdication in 1912 marked the end of centuries of imperial rule in China.