The word "Hutong" came from the Mongolian language about 700 years ago. It originates from the word "hottog" in Mongolian meaning "water well." As the passage formed by lines of siheyuan (quadrangle) where most Beijing residents live, Hutong is one of the unique special features in Beijing, attracting tourists from all over the world rather than the modern buildings. One Hutong connects with another, and siheyuan connects with siheyuan, to form a block, and blocks join with blocks to form the whole city.
There are thousands of Hutong here surrounded the Forbidden City, most of which were came into being in the dynasties Yuan, Ming, Qing. Old local residents have a saying: "There are 360 large Hutongs and as many small Hutongs as there are hairs on an ox." And with the development of the economy and city constructions, there are mainly 4000 Hutongs in Beijing at present. The name of a Hutong implicates its origin, location or history. Most of them are named according to the feudal institution, bridges, rivers, trade market, merchandise and people’s names etc.
Nanluoguxiang (South Gong and Drum Lane) and Skewed Tobacco Pouch Street are famous Hutongs in Beijing.