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The exhibition is currently showing at Hong Kong Heritage Museum
Ceremony and Celebration: The Grand Weddings of the Qing Emperors is currently exhibiting at Hong Kong Heritage Museum.
The weddings of the Qing emperors, ranked as a state ceremony, involved extremely elaborate rituals, inheriting Han marriage rites as well as incorporating elements of Manchu culture and customs.
The exhibition showcases over 150 items selected from rare collections from Beijing's Palace Museum. The emperors' weddings were extravagant affairs involving elaborate rituals and customs. The wedding ritual objects on display include silk and fur clothing, wedding garments, jewellery, ornamental accessories, household utensils and more.
Procured by the imperial court, the stately weddings of the Qing emperors involved lavish dowry articles being transported from the empress's residence to the palace. The lavishly decorated dowries were bearing auspicious motifs, signifying the utmost importance of the grand wedding rituals and the extravagance of the imperial house.
Throughout the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), only four emperors, namely Shunzhi, Kangxi, Tongzhi and Guangxu, had the opportunity of taking an empress after their accession to the throne and held their wedding ceremonies inside the Forbidden City. Interestingly, a restored replica of Emperor Kangxi's wedding room at the Palace of Earthly Tranquillity within the Forbidden City is displayed at the exhibition.
To explore further about this tradition and custom, you can visit the Thematic Gallery 5 where wedding related artefacts from local museum collections are displayed. It highlights marriage traditions of society. Wedding rituals are elaborate; the process starting from presenting wedding gifts, delivering the dowry, putting on wedding costume, receiving the bride, riding the bridal sedan and through to giving wedding banquet.
In comparison with the wedding ritual objects of the Grand Weddings being exhibited at the Themstic Galleries 1 and 2, you would be able to gain a better understanding of the commonalities and differences of the wedding rituals between the Qing emperors and folks in society.
Why? A rare and unique collection from Beijing's Palace Museum
When:Monday, Wednesday to Friday : 10am - 6pm Saturday, Sunday and public holidays : 10am - 7pm Christmas Eve and Chinese New Year's Eve : 10am - 5pm Closed on Tuesdays (except public holidays) and the first two days of the Chinese New Year.