Archive for November, 2008

Beijing Olympic – Shanghai home prices drop 5.87% last week

Sunday, November 30th, 2008

Average home prices in Shanghai dropped 5.87 percent last week from a week earlier to 9,696 yuan (US$1,309) per square meter, according to E-house China R&D Institute.

Property prices, including residences and offices, dropped 8.44 percent in the period to 7,971 yuan per square meter, the institute said.

“Growing transactions of low-priced homes pulled down the average price,” said Xue Jianxiong, head of research at Shanghai Youwin Real Estate Information Service Co Ltd.

Total transactions dropped 10.98 percent last week to 290,800 square meters, the institute said.

“Many buyers failed to gain a mortgage because some commercial banks have used up the year’s quota, which reduces transactions,” Xue said.

Meanwhile, fewer new properties hit the market, also helping to pull down transactions, Xue said.

Average housing prices in Shanghai rose 7.9 percent last month from a year earlier. Prices of new homes in the city grew 8.3 percent in October and second-hand home prices rose 8.9 percent, the National Development and Reform Commission said last week.

The country has issued a string of policies to cool down the real estate boom, such as tightening credit to developers, increasing supervision over land use and enforcing tax policies.

Last month’s average housing price in the mainland’s 70 major cities jumped 9.5 percent on a yearly basis, compared with September’s 8.9-percent growth rate.


China Travel – Drepung Monastery

Sunday, November 30th, 2008

The Drepung Monastery is located in the hillside of Gambo Utse Mountain 5 kilometers northwest to Lhasa City in the Tibet Autonomous District.


The Drepung Monastery, the Ganden Monastery and Sera Monastery are collectively called as Big Three Monasteries. The monastery was founded in 1416 by a disciple of Tsong Khapa under the patronage of a noble family and later enlarged by the Fifth Dalai Lama. The second, third and forth Dalai Lama once stayed here. In the ninth year (1530) of the Jiajing reign of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the Ganden Palace (Ganden Potrang) was built as the living room of Dalai Lama, who took charge of the power over major religious and political issues in Tibet.


The monastery has a large scale with an area of 250,000 square meters. The main structures of the monastery include the Main Assembly Hall (known as Tshomchen), four Tantric colleges and Ganden Palace (Ganden Potrang). The tshomchen of Drepung, covering 4,500 square meters and supported by 183 pillars in the center of the monastery, is the best known, most powerful tschomen of all the monasteries in Tibet. It can seat 8,000 monks. In addition, a great deal of ancient books and sutras are preserved in the monastery.


Chinese Culture – Tombs of Han at Yinqueshan

Sunday, November 30th, 2008


Clan tombs of Western Han Dynasty. Excavated in 1972


Location: Linyi, Shandong Province


Period: the end of 3rd century BC – AD 1st century


Significance: The finds have played the key role in studying ancient Chinese art of war, calendar, philology, system of recording, and other issues.





Bamboo strips: (up); Lacquer cup with two ears: wine vessel or water vessel (bottom, length 17.5 cm, height 6.2 cm)

The Yinqueshan Han Tombs are tombs for family members at Yinqueshan, near Linyi in Shandong Province. The tombs are of two kinds: stone hall and rammed earth pit, inside which a lot of funerary articles like pottery, terra-cotta warriors, silk and jade, and a large number of Hna bamboo slips, were buried with the dead.


In 1972 two famous volumes on martial arts — “The Art of War by Sun Bin” and “The Art of War by Sun Zi were unearthed out of the tombs after being lost for two thousand years, and are listed as one of the ten most important archaeological findings of modern times.


 The Art of War


Sun Zi: The Art of War is the earliest and most valuable Chinese treatise on military science extant, dating from the late Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC). The book is a condensation of the experience of warfare in that historical era, with the emphasis on precautionary and intelligence strategy. By revealing the nature and important rules of warfare. Sunzi: The Art of War has had a tremendous influence on military, political and philosophical thought in China. Down the ages it has been called a “military classic,” and its author a “military genius.” This work, now over 2,000 years old, has been translated into various languages since the 17th century, and even today has a profound influence all over the world.


Sun Bin: The Art of War is another ancient Chinese classic dealing with military science, written during the Warring States Period (475-221 BC). Sun Bin was a direct descendant of Sunzi. It incorporates the experience of warfare into this later historical period. It inherits and develops the military theories contained in Sunzi: The Art of War. Sun Bin: The Art of War was lost for about 1,000 years, until 1972, when a copy of the work written on strips of bamboo was found in a tomb dating from the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220) at Yinqueshan, near Linyi in Shandong Province.