Beijing Legation Quarter

Beijing, China

Beijing Legation Quarter

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The Beijing Legation Quarter was the area in Beijing, China where a number of foreign legations were located between 1861 and 1959. In the Chinese language, the area is known as Dong Jiaomin Xiang (simplified Chinese: 东交民巷; traditional Chinese: 東交民巷; pinyin: Dōng Jiāomín Xiàng), which is the name of the hutong (lane or small street) through the area. It is located in the Dongcheng District, immediately to the east of Tiananmen Square.

The Legation Quarter was the location of the 55-day siege of the International Legations, which took place during the Boxer Rebellion of 1900. After the Boxer Rebellion, the Legation Quarter was under the jurisdiction of foreign countries with diplomatic legations (later most commonly called "embassies") in the quarter. The foreign residents were exempt from Chinese law. The Legation Quarter attracted many diplomats, soldiers, scholars, artists, tourists, and Sinophiles. World War II effectively ended the special status of the Legation Quarter, and with the Great Leap Forward and other events in communist China most of the European-style buildings of the Legation Quarter were destroyed.

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