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Heptachord Terrace

Why is Heptachord Terrace special­


Heptachord Terrace, is called Guqin Tai in Chinese. It is situated at the west of Turtle Hill and on the bank of the Moon Lake in Wuhan of central China’s Hubei province.


The terrace was built in honor of the sincere friendship between Yu Boya and Zhong Ziqi. Yu Boya, a famous official during the Spring and Autumn Period (770 B.C. - 476B.C.), was an expert heptachord player. One day, Yu Boya played two pieces of music on his way home by boat. One was a composition called High Mountain and the other Flowing Water. To Yu Boya's amazement, Zhong Ziqi, a woodcutter, understood his mood and appreciated his music. Yu Boya admired Zhong Ziqi's musical attainment and after a long conversation they became bosom friends. Since Yu Boya had to return to his state, they agreed to meet again in the coming year. Unfortunately, Yu Boya found that his friend had died from disease before their planned meeting could take place. He was deeply grieved upon hearing the sad news. He played High Mountain and Flowing Water once again in front of the grave. The emotion of the music was so strong that it was as if the rivers and the mountains were mourning. When he had finished playing, the musician broke his heptachord to pieces. From then on, Yu Boya never played again.


The Heptachord Terrace is the symbol of friendship, which is highly appreciated as a traditional virtue along the Chinese history.


Heptachord Terrace Highlights


As the memorial site of the friendship between the two, the Heptachord Terrace is set, surrounding by water on three sides and among some very beautiful scenery. As well as the stone terrace, a hall named High Mountain and Flowing Water stands on the site. Other recreational features around the Heptachord Terrace are a courtyard and a teahouse as well as an arboretum.


At the entrance to the Heptachord Terrace, you are confronted by a colorful glaze-tiled hall over which the Chinese characters say Guqin Tai. Walking to the north brings you to a screen wall facing the gate of a house, on the screen is carved the Chinese character written by the Daoguang Emperor (1875 - 1909) of the Qing Dynasty. Passing a small gate to the east of this screen wall, a zigzag veranda lies in front of you. Here you will see many stone carvings and a stele inscription commemorating the restoration of the Heptachord Terrace. On the west of the veranda is the Heptachord Hall in front of which is a white marble terrace. As the legend suggests, it was on this terrace that Yu Boya played his instrument. There is an exhibition of wax figures depicting how the two men became good friends together with a white marble statue of Yu Boya playing the Heptachord.

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