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Jinzhong

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Jinzhong (晋中; Jìnzhōng) is a city in Shanxi Province in China.

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It is located about 40 km southwest of Taiyuan.

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  • Chang Family Compound, Dongyang Town (southwest of the Yuci District in Jinzhong City.). 8AM-5:30PM. One of the Shanxi merchant family compounds. Like the other family compounds, the Chang Family Compound was built over several generations by a wealthy merchant family to house the many branches of this successful clan. The Chang Family Compound is the largest of the Shanxi merchant family manors; despite its impressive size, however, what remains today is just one quarter of the original 600,000 square-meter compound, which contained over 1500 rooms. As the family prospered and grew in size, the Changs placed a great emphasis on education. This academic focus produced many scholars, painters, and calligraphers, and for this reason this compound is more interesting artistically than some of the other compounds in the region. Each of the courtyards, which are laid out along a 1 km long road, is somewhat different, but the themes throughout are very similar, with grey buldings, archways, smaller courtyards, and gardens in each one. The courtyards are filled with carvings in brick, stone, and wood, and there are many examples of carving which are of very high quality. The garden in one of the courtyards contains a collection of carved stone lions of various shapes and sizes. Originally there were 108 lions in the collection; today only 50+ remain. Behind these couryards is a large garden, designed in both the northern China and southern China styles, purportedly because the Chang family had to entertain visitors from both north and sourth. A 29-meter tall Guanji Tower in this garden is the tallest structure in the compound and offers expansive views over the entire compound from the top. ¥60.  edit

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