Yellow Crane Tower

Yellow Crane Tower (Chinese: 黄鹤楼; pinyin: Huáng Hè Lóu) is a famous and historic tower, first built in the year 223 AD, the current structure however, was rebuilt in 1981. The tower stands on Sheshan (Snake Hill), at the bank of Yangtze River in the Wuchang District, of the city of Wuhan, in Hubei province of central China.


Tourists can obtain a fine view of the Yangtze River from the top of the tower. Yellow Crane Tower is considered one of the Four Great Towers of China. In its modern version it has the appearance of an ancient tower but is built of modern materials and includes an elevator as it was rebuilt in 1981. Displays are presented at each level. To the east on the hill, a large temple bell may be struck by tourists for a small fee. During the week-long celebration of China's National Day (October 1), court dances are demonstrated in the western yard.


There are at least two legends related to Yellow Crane Tower. In the first, an Immortal (仙人) name Wang Zi'an (王子安) rode off on a yellow crane from Snake Mountain. A tower was later built in commemoration. In the second, after becoming an Immortal, Fei Wenyi (费文祎) would ride a yellow crane and often stop on Snake Hill to take a rest.


Yellow Crane Tower was made famous by an 8th century poem written by Cui Hao called "Yellow Crane Tower" (黄鹤楼). The original text of the poem is shown below:

A modern English translation of the poem may follow as such:

There is another famous poem about it by Li Bai called "Seeing off Meng Haoran for Guangling at Yellow Crane Tower" (黄鹤楼送孟浩然之广陵). The original poem is shown below:

A modern English translation of the poem may follow as such:

Alternative translation: My old friend bids a westerly farewell to Yellow Crane Tower, In the misty blossoms of April as he goes down to Yangzhou. His lone sail is a distant shadow disappearing in the azure void, All I see is a long river flowing to the edge of heaven.

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