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Hong Village - A Village in Chinese Painting

Hong Village

Hong Village (hóng cūn 宏村) is located on the southwest of the foot of Huangshan Mountain (huáng shān 黄山), 11 miles from Yi County (yī xiàn 黟县) in Anhui Province (ān huī shěng 安徽省). The name of the village which is a bull-shaped antique one belonging to the Land of Peach Blossom (táo huā yuán 桃花源) of old Yi County symbolizes expansion and prosperity. It has a long history of more than 900 years featuring green hills and limpid river. Therefore, people always call it "A Village In Chinese Painting (zhōng guó huà lǐ de xiāng cūn 中国画里的乡村)".

 

Overview

Hui Architecture, South Lake, the Gate of Hong VillageWith the boundless mountain and crystal like water harmoniously matching each other, the ancestors of the village made the greatest bull-shaped artificial water system in China. The crescent-moon-shaped pool beside the mouth of a spring is cattle's stomach. Chinese people are used to thinking that flowers are doomed to wither and full moon is doomed to wane (huā kāi zé luò yuè mǎn zé kuī 花开则落,月满则亏) which is not a favorable scene, hence the shape of the pool. The South Lake (nán hú 南湖) is its tripe. The winding river is cattle's intestine. The residences on the two sides of the river are the body. The Thunder Mound (léi gǎng 雷岗) is cattle's head and the two antique trees are its horns. Last, the four bridges over the river represent the four legs of a cattle. As is unique, it is one of the World Historic and Cultural Heritage. Since the village is located on the hills where the cloud is sometimes splashing while sometimes transparent, the village is just looks like a Chinese painting characterized by rich culture and beautiful scenery. The main buildings in the village are residences and private gardens while the remains are private schools, ancestral halls and public facilities. Nearly all of the architectures are decorated by various delicate carvings. What's more, it has always been appealing to the visitors all over the world including many film directors. Many well known swordsmen films such as "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (wò hǔ cáng lóng 卧虎藏龙)" and "Beggar, Su Qier (sū qǐ ér 苏乞儿)" and TV plays are just shot there.

Transportation: take shuttle at the south gate of Huangshan Mountain at 9:40 or 3:40 to Yi County and then take a bus which will cost CNY 2/person and 15 minutes to the village.
Admission Fee: CNY 104; CNY 52 for students

 

Attractions Inside

Zilu Temple

Zilu TempleZilu Temple (zǐ lù sì 梓路寺) is located in a corner of Zi Ridge (zǐ lǐng 梓岭), 3 miles from the southwest of Hong Village. Built in AD 843, it has been always attracting by a great number of visitors and pilgrims. It is said that, it is also the sample of another more famous temple in China named Lingyin Temple (líng yǐn sì 灵隐寺) where Ji Gong (jì gōng 济公), the mad monk, used to live. The left mountain of the temple is like a dragon while the right one is like a white tiger. In front of the temple there are 6 hills all together, 2 of which are just like two lying Buddas. Characterized by spacious area and magnificent scenery, this temple is really an ideal place for those pilgrims.

 

South Lake

South LakeSouth Lake is located at the southern end of the village. It was a bow-shaped lake dug on the basis of West Lake in Hangzhou (háng zhōu xī hú 杭州西湖). On the secondary lake bank, an antique tree is sticking highly in the sky with its deep green leaves keeping out the sun. The willows are dropping their oisers down on the lake like a beautiful girl brushing her hair. All in all, the water is a white stretch, joining the sky at the horizon.

 

Jingde Hall

Jingde HallJingde Hall (jìng dé táng 敬德堂) is a quite simple native house in the village which is still in good condition. It is located at the lower reaches of the river. It is a H-type residence. In China, especially in Anhui Province, the gate of a house is the most important thing in the house. It is said that people would spend a lot of money on decorating the gate while a little on building a house. The gate of Jingde Hall is so exquisite and meaningful, for example, the carvings of plum blossoms, orchids, bamboo, and chrysanthemum symbolize indomitable will and sacred quality.

 

Shuren Hall

Shuren HallShuren Hall (shù rén táng 树人堂) used to be a private residence of an officer in Qing Dynasty (qīng cháo 清朝). Today, it is a private Folk Art Collection. In order to carry forward the fine tradition of Huizhou Culture (huī zhōu wén huà 徽州文化), the owner has collected many old machines from antique mills, stone utensils, Huizhou Wood Blocks (huī zhōu bǎn huà 徽州版画), traditional Chinese stationeries and pedigrees of clans in Hong County (hóng cūn zú pǔ 宏村族谱). The hexagon architecture is for the purpose of a promising future. In the attic on the hall, there is an out of date line map of businessmen of the village.

 

Peach Residence

Peach ResidencePeach Residence (táo yuán jū 桃园居), built in 1860, is celebrated for the rare kind of peach trees in the garden. Although the residence is not a large one, the tile carvings and wood carvings are so fine. The carvings on the arc over the gateway and in the room is so delicate and complex each with its own symbolic meaning. The four decorative patterns are "Tattoos on the Back of Yue Fei (yuè fēi cì zì 岳飞刺字)", "Wang Xiang Requiring Carp (wáng xiáng qiú lǐ 王祥求鲤)", "Ji Zi Hanging A Sword (jǐ zǐ guà jiàn 季子挂剑)" and "Kong Rong Giving The Biggest Pear to Others (kǒng róng ràng lí 孔融让梨)" which mean honest, piety, faithfulness and righteousness respectively.

 

Antique Trees

Antique Trees at The Gate of Hong VillageAt the gate of the village there are two antique trees of more than 500 years. One is pterocarya tree which is called red maple tree locally, the other is maidenhair tree called white fruit tree. Pterocarya tree is 19 meters high. Its diameter is about 2 meters. The top of the tree is like an enormous umbrella covering most of the village. On its north lies the maidenhair tree which is 20 meters high, like a sword sticking highly into the sky. As an antique and rare species, the maidenhair tree is regarded as the gem of the village. This village has a very strange custom that the bridal sedan chair circles around the pterocarya tree for greet fortune and the coffin with an old died senior in circles around the white fruit tree for his healthy children and grandchildren.

 

 

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