On the night of 29 February 1912, soldiers loyal to the first president of the Republic of China, Yuan Shikai, rioted across Beijing. By noon the following day, seven huge fires had engulfed the city. This panorama illustrates the level of destruction left in their wake. GE Morrison, an Australian correspondent in Beijing at the time commented in his diaries: soldiers of the 3rd division had mutinied, had broken loose and were looting the city. Shots were flying but nobody seemed hit. It was some time before we realised that shots were being fired for intimidation only.