Nanjing the Beloved City

 Nanjing has witnessed the continuous emergence of many distinguished talents and noble hearts as well as monumental achievements that shone through the ages. Attracted by her special appeal, a great number of powerful figures and people actuated by high ideals have stayed in or frequented this metropolis to contend for the lead or to give play to their genius and virtues. Military commanders such as Sun Quan and Xie An; political leaders such as Hong Xiuquan and Dr. Sun Yat-sen; scientists like Zu Chongzhi, Ge Hong, Li Shizhen and Zhenghe; men of letters such as Liu Xie, Xiao Tong, Cao Xueqin and Wu Jingzi; artists like Wang Xizhi, Gu Kaizhi, Xu Beihong and Fu Baoshi; educators such as Tao Xingzhi; and architects like Yang Tingbao—all these renowned historical figures used to settle on this blessed land to have their splendid dreams fulfilled. The towering Purple Mountains and billowing Yangtze River nurtured them and provided them with arenas in which to realize their aspirations. By virtue of their genius, vision, and sagacity, these best and brightest sons and daughters of the nation made spectacular contributions to the resplendent Chinese civilization.

The tremendous changes that have taken place in Nanjing since New China was founded are even more inspiring, just as the much quoted couplet from a poem written by the late Chairman Mao Zedong on the occasion of the liberation of the city on April 23, 1949 has it:

The city, a tiger crouching, a dragon curling, outshines its ancient glories;

In heroic triumph heaven and earth have been overturned.

Balmy spring winds returned to bring new life to this historic city, of which the common people came to be the genuine masters. The night marish sufferings and humiliations of the past were left behind once and for all. The citizens of Nanjing have been working hard to give this age-old town a new appearance. Especially for the past ten years or more, the country’s reform and opening-up policy has infused new vigor into this beautiful and famous city. Newly built industries, an efficient transportation network extending in all directions, picturesque urban construction, a booming tertiary industry, a varied and colorful cultural life, all these and more added charm and vitality to this modern metropolis, which retains somehow the ambiance and features of an ancient capital. The prophecy of Dr. Sun Yat-sen father of modern China that “Nanjing will have a future that knows no bounds” is becoming true.

Nanjing, an old city with a rich and celebrated past, yet vigorous in her new youth-how lovely she is!

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