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Xian Attractions - Top sightseeing and things to see
Bampo Neolithic Village Museum
Taken Chenwei as his popular name, Monk Xuanzang was a very famous Buddhist
Master and the founder of Faxiang sect of Buddhism. He went to India to
research the Buddhist doctrines in 629 AD (the 3rd year of Zhenguan period),
and then he came back in 645 AD with 657 volumes of Buddhist scriptures.
In the temple, he translated 74 volumes in 1,335 chapters of the Buddhist
scriptures into Chinese. He was the best one of the four famous translators
of Buddhist scriptures, because his translations were the largest in quantity,
the best in quality and the greatest in influence. In praise of the Master's
dedication to Buddhism, Tang Emperor Tai Zong wrote "An Introduction
to the Sacred Teachings of Monk Tripitaka of the Great Tang Dynasty".
When this temple was completed, Tang Emperor Xuanzong invited the Monk
to be the headmaster immediately. In order to protect the Buddhist Scriptures,
Monk Xuanzang asked for a pagoda to be built. He designed the pagoda like
a wild goose as he saw in India. So this pagoda was called the Wild Goose
Pagoda in memory of the famous Monk. It was a five-storeyed pagoda when
it was first built. It was added to 10 storeys in 701 AD (during the years
of Wu Zetian's regin in Chang'an) when it was rebuilt, with a wooden stairs
leading to the top inside. Nobody knew the reason (no record) why the
pagoda became 7 storeys until today.
The Jianfu Temple was built in 648 AD to pay homeage to the Emperor Li Zhi of Tang dynasty upon the centenary of his death by his son Emperor Rui Zong, Li Dan. Therefore, it was originally named "The Xianfu Temple (The Temple of Offering Happiness)". Six years later, the Empress Wu Zetian took the throne by deposing her son (the Emperor). In order to show her memorial of her dead husband, the Xianfu Temple was renamed the Jianfu Temple and the name still being used now.
The Jianfu Temple had been damaged and tattered and tattered because
of the year-round wars in the later Tang dynasty, so the temple was moved
to the southern yard (that is the Tower Yard). The present Jianfu Temple
has been formed and established after the remedy and maintenance of dynasties
from the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing.
The Bell Tower is a square-shaped construction with the height of the
36 meters, built on the 8-meter-high blue brick base with for corridors
connected together. It occupies and area of 1,377 square meters. The Bell
Tower was originally built in the Guangji Street 0.5 kilometer west of
the Drum Tower in the 17th year of Hong Wu period of the Ming Dynasty
(1384 AD). In 1582 AD, supervised by the city governor Gong Xinxian, it
was moved to the present-day site. The tower is five-room long and wide,
together with a seven-room surrounding corridor on the upper floor. Three
storeys of eaves seen from the exterior of the building, but the interior
of the building has only two storeys. The upturned eaves are supported
by colorful dougong (a unique of Chinese architectural style). The whole
tower is a wooden structure with mortise and tenon jointed without a single
iron nail. The three layers of eaves are covered with blue glazed tiles,
the beams and columns of the upper and lower rooms are decorated with
colour paintings. The top part of the tower is 5 meter high, with a gold-tiled
roof. All this makes the tower look magnificent and grand.
The contents of the Forest Steles can be divided into four groups: works
of literature and philosophy, historical records, calligraphy and pictorial
The total height of the Drum Tower is 33 meters, in a rectangular shape with tiers of upturned eaves and a gold-tiled roof. It was built in the 13th year of Hongwu period (1380 AD). There used to be a huge drum on the tower, which told time in cooperation with the huge bell on the Bell Tower. There is one of the busiest roads passing through under the tower for traffic to go back and fro in the north-south direction.
The Drum Tower is a very strong and solid building. It has withstood
more than ten earthquakes for over 500 years and there is not a single
crack appearing on it, and now it is still standing on its original site.
The latest reconstruction was built in 1956. Today, its possession has been turned into a small, quiet and charming park. The main buildings have been repainted and a handful of monks live and worship there.
The history of this temple can be traced back to the third century, and
its original name was Zunshan Temple. During the Sui dynasty, it was rebuilt
and was given its present name. Since then, it gradually became the headquarters
of an order with a network of 45 prefectural temples, which were all established
by Yang Qian, the founder of the Sui dynasty. During the Tang dynasty,
it became a great center of Buddhist art and learning. However, during
the Buddhist persecution of 841-845, most of the buildings were destroyed,
and even the survived also disappeared at the end of the Tang. In Ming
dynasty, the temple was rebuilt and again
The temple and Xinfeng Park are located south of the Little Goose Pagoda
on a small street called Xingshan Si jie, behind the open market of Xiaozhai.
The warriors and horses were sculptured to protect the tomb of Qin Shihuang (the First Emperor). By 221 B.C., he defeated six countries in less than ten years, concluding the chaos of more than 500 years known as the Warring States Period. By this time, China's first-ever centralized feudal power was founded and laid a solid basis for the rapid development of economy, politics, ideology and culture. Qin Shihuang founded its capital in Xi'an, and created one of the greatest ancient cities the world has ever known.
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