Mountain Villa with Embracing Beanuty
The rockwork at Mountain Villa with Embracing Beauty is considered outstanding among Suzhou's gardens. With lakes, stones and rockeries that cover an area of just 330 square meters, the Mountain Villa has a design that features its hills, not its water. A lake serves as a counterpoint to the rockwork that, it is said in China, "has no equal in regions south of the Yangtze River." In the Five Dynasties (907-979), the garden was owned by Guangling Lord in Wuyue State. In the Song Dynasty, it was first a music garden, then an academy of classical learning, later a temple-Jingde Temple-and still later as a yamen, a government office in feudal China. In the Ming Dynasty it was a private residence. The garden began to take its present shape as a private garden in the Qing Dynasty.