Huqiu Garden (Tiger
Huqiu Garden is located at the northwest
of Suzhou city, 5 kilometers away from the city center.
There is a legend about its name. It is said that King
of Wu in Spring and Autumn Period, buried his father
here, and three days later a white tiger came and crouched
on the top of the hill as if he is guarding the tomb,
hence the name Tiger Hill.
It covers an area of some 14,100 square
meters and only 36 meters high. Although it is only
a small hill, there are numerous historic interests,
which make Huqiu Garden a famous attraction. Su Dongpo,
a famous poet in Song Dynasty, said that it would be
a great pity if one didn't visit Huqiu Garden
when he came to Suzhou. Among the attractions in Huqiu Garden, Tiger Pagoda (also called Yuanyan Temple Pagoda)
and ¡°Sword Pool¡± (Jianchi)
are the most famous two.
Situated on the peak of Tiger
built in 961 during Song Dynasty, Tiger Pagoda is a
seven-storey octagonal pagoda, which is 47.5 meters
high and built with brick. Because the foundation of
the pagoda is not well built, it has started to tilt
to northwest from 400 hundred years ago, and now the
top point of the pagoda is 2.2 meters away from the
vertical center line of the pagoda. The pagoda now becomes
the symbol of Suzhou City and the leaning pagoda of
Sword Pool is about 45 square meters wide
and 6 meters deep. The pool never drys and water there
is very clear. It is said the tomb of King Wu (He Lu)
was under it. The king was a zealous collector of rare
swords, and after he died, all the collections including
some precious ones which were made of gold, were also
buried with him. Hence the name Sword Pool.