In ancient times, due to underdeveloped science, people were more superstitious, and they all felt that it was a very bad thing to execute death row prisoners. At this time, because the death row prisoner is about to die, the Yin Qi is particularly heavy. If it is not handled properly, there will be endless troubles. Therefore, under normal circumstances, the execution of prisoners should be selected at three o’clock in the noon, when the sun is at its highest. This is not enough. Because of the huge flow of people, Caishikou is also the place where yang is the most prosperous. Choosing to execute here can suppress yin.
Another reason is actually the so-called “kill the chickens for the monkeys.” In ancient times, the choice of beheading the executed prisoners in the downtown area was mostly for the purpose of killing a hundred people. It can serve as a warning and deterrent to the onlookers. Outside the door, there are many people coming and going. In addition, the inner city of the capital (within the nine gates) is mostly the mansion of nobles and nobles. Obviously, such an inauspicious matter of decapitation in the inner city will not be approved. I had to be in the outer city, but not too far away from the inner city (there are fewer people watching the excitement too far away from the city). So I had to choose Caishikou, which is very close to the inner city.
The main reason for the popularity of Caishikou was that the Qing government moved the killing site from the Xisi Pailou (called Xishi at the time) in the Ming Dynasty to Caishikou outside Xuanwumen. It is said that the execution grounds were located near the crossroads on the north side of Caishikou Street today. On the eve of the winter solstice, prisoners who were sentenced to be cut after autumn were executed. The condemned prisoners were pushed into the prison car before dawn, and they passed through Xuanwumen and walked through Xuanwai Street to Caishikou. The prisoners were lined up from east to west. The executioner held the ghost knife in order. After the head was chopped off, they were hung or inserted in the row. Public on wooden stakes in the street.
Sushun, one of the “Eight Ministers of Gu Ming” in the late Xianfeng period (1861) of the Qing Dynasty, and the “Six Gentlemen” of the 24th Year of Guangxu (1898) Reform Movement of 1898 were both killed in Caishikou. Later, “caishikou” gradually became synonymous with “execution ground”. With the demise of the Qing Dynasty in 1911, the execution ground was moved. From now on, this area has gradually become the most prosperous commercial street and transportation hub on Xuanwai Avenue.
There are many vegetable stalls along the street, so many people from 49 cities come here to buy food, and call the street with the most concentrated vegetable market as Caishi Street, which was renamed Caishikou in the Qing Dynasty. This name has been in use until today.
Empress Dowager Cixi launched a court coup to seize power, and when he first closed the curtain to listen to politics, Sushun, among the eight ministers of government who had been entrusted by Emperor Xianfeng, was decapitated here. After the failure of the Reform Movement of 1898, Cixi killed Tan Sitong, Liu Guangdi and other lofty colleagues here.
According to the “Beijing Travel Guide” compiled by Ma Zhixu, every time there are many prisoners executed in Beijing after the autumn, they are arranged from east to west, and the executioner carries the knife and executes the execution from east to west. The five-handed Guitou Knife and the ten-handed Lingchi Dissecting Knife used are now in the Museum of History. In the old days, the prisoner was escorted out of Xuanwumen (Shunchengmen), crossed the Decapitated (Soul) Bridge, passed through the lost market, and sent to the Caishikou Dharma Field. There was no hope of surviving. After the prisoner was killed, the body was taken away, and the blood stains were covered with loess pads.