There have been many UFO sightings reported in different parts of the world, and the frequency seems to be on the rise in recent years. China, too, has its records.
There is a painting of a UFO done by Wu Youru in 1892 during the reign of Emperor Guangxu of the Qing Dynasty. It is titled Red Flames in the Sky and it recorded a strange event that happened on the Zhuque Bridge by the Fuzi Temple in Nanjing. The crowds, wearing the typical long robes and Mandarin jackets of the time, packed along the bridge and are looking up at a fireball in mid-air. There are characters inscribed on the painting that describe the scene.
A translation of the 190-character description is provided by Paul Dong, a long-time UFO researcher and writer, in his book China’s Major Mysteries:
“It was about eight o’clock in the evening, September 28. In the southern sky of Nanking City appeared a fireball, egg-shaped, red without light. It floated in the air, slowly eastward. As the twilight sky was cloudy and dusky, its appearance was conspicuous. And on the Zhu-Que Bridge gathered a crowd of several hundreds, standing on tip-toe, craning their necks upward.
“It lingered for a period of a meal’s time, fading into the distance little by little. Some said it was a meteor passing by. But a meteor took but an instant to slip away, while this ball’s movement, from its first appearance in the near sky to the final disappearance in the distance, was quite stagnant. So it cannot be a meteor.
“Others said it was a lantern-kite that children flew. But the wind blew north that evening, while the ball turned eastward. So it cannot be a lantern-kite either. For a time everybody spoke, but none could solve the mystery.
“An old man said, ‘When it first arose, there was a slight noise which was hardly audible, like the buzzing approach of men darting across the South Gate.’”
Translated by Cecilia, edited by Chen Junyi