Japan in Focus
241019 · By Georgia Shipley
With the Japanese Rugby World Cup and Joanna Lumley bursting onto our television screens recently, we’ve been lapping up all things Japan.Read more
The Forbidden City was built by Emperor Yongle in the 15th century as the Imperial household, with a total of 800 buildings and 9,999 rooms. The complex was eventually opened to the public in 1949, having served as the Emperor's home for 505 years - used by 14 Ming and 10 Qing emperors.
The 'city', called "Gu Gong" in Chinese, is rectangular (961 metres x 753 metres) and is enclosed within its own protective nine-metre walls and 52-metre wide moat. Guards in watchtowers protected the city further with bows and arrows.