China A to Z: D is for Doorways…and Dragons


Sometimes mundane things catch my attention. One of these, something that struck me on my first visit to China and I have noticed every time since, was the importance of doorways from the elaborate to the humble.


To quote wikipedia:

Chinese dragons or East Asian dragons are legendary creatures in Chinese mythologyChinese folklore, and East Asian culture at large. East Asian dragons have many animal-like forms such as turtles and fish, but are most commonly depicted as snake-like with four legs. They traditionally symbolize potent and auspicious powers, particularly control over water, rainfall, typhoons, and floods. The dragon is also a symbol of power, strength, and good luck for people who are worthy of it in East Asian culture. During the days of Imperial China, the Emperor of China usually used the dragon as a symbol of his imperial power and strength.

Dragons are everywhere.

Two notes:

  • Chinese dragons do not fly.
  • The bixi (B is for…) is a son of the dragon in Chinese folklore.

D is also for Donkey


Just one humble donkey. Traditional construction methods are still practical in many places. This donkey was helping with construction on the great wall. A smart, agile donkey is better for some tasks than big equipment.


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