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One of the best museums in China, Capital Museum (首都博物馆) is a relatively new and important museum in Beijing’s central administrative and cultural district. While touring Beijing’s attractions, consider stopping in at Capital Museum to learn more about Beijing and its history as an imperial capital for hundreds of years.
What makes the museum unusual among museums in China is that the best academics in the country were employed to produce a high-tech exhibition using world-class museum display methods.
You’ll see a number of flat panel screens and multimedia equipment employed. The Digital Movie Hall has a very wide screen and 3D videos can be seen. For international visitors, you’ll find PDA (personal digital assistant) devices that provides information in several languages, and free museum guides in several languages.
The regular exhibits are History and Culture, Urban Construction, and Beijing Folk Customs.
The art exhibitions include “Ancient Porcelain,” “Ancient Beijing Bronze Art,” and “Ancient Jade.”
Ancient porcelain is among the favorite exhibitions. The exhibition is on the fourth floor and focuses on porcelain wares of the Song (960–1279), Yuan (1271–1368), Ming (1368–1644), and Qing (1644–1911) dynasties. There are altogether 170 individual pieces or sets of porcelain. One piece was estimated to be worth ten million yuan.
Ancient bronzes: The 2,100–2,600-year-old “Bronzes of the Western Zhou Dynasty” and “Eastern Zhou Dynasty” are another highlight. This display is on the fourth floor also. You can see the differences between the bronzes of the two dynasties.
The initial work on the collection started in 1953. A museum was open to the public in 1981 in the Confucian Temple. That collection was moved to the present site in 2006, a prominent site on Beijing Subway Line 1 west of Tian'anmen Square.