Temple and Cemetery of Confucius and the Kong Family Mansion
When talking of China, one of the words that firstly come into your mind maybe Confucius (551~479BC). Confucianism embodies the Chinese spirit and is one of the world’s classic and most widespread philosophies, and Confucius is definitely one of China’s greatest persons. Thus during your China Travel, besides obligatory Beijing Tours, Qufu — Hometown of Confucius is also a fantastic destination.

Qufu in Shandong is the hometown of Confucius (551~479BC) who is a great thinker, states man and educator in China’s history, and founder of the Confucian school of philosophy, which is the ideological root of all varieties of Chinese culture. Its position in the making of Chinese nationality and culture is never surpassed for 2000 years. Qufu, admired by all rulers and intellectuals in history, has numerous cultural sites, among which the most famed are Temple and Cemetery of Confucius and the Kong Family Masion.

The Confucian Temple is in the center of Qufu City. It was built in 478 BC. There are still 466 halls, pavilions and other rooms intact, covering a total area of 21.8 hectares. Repeated improvement and expansion has turned the temple into a palatial complex with nine rows of courtyards.

The Great Accomplishment Hall, the major structure of the temple, is 33 meters tall. It is roofed with yellow glazed tiles and has octagonal eaves. The front 10 columns are carved with dragons. In addition to a statue of Confucius, the hall has also houses stone inscription of the Ming Dynasty, which tells the life story of Confucius in 120 pictures, as well as a great deal of stone tablets.

The Confucian Family Mansion, right next to the Confucian Temple, was the residence of Confucius’ descendants and also the residence just next to the imperial palace in scale. It covers 16 hectares with 463 rooms. The family mansion now houses a large number of documents, files and cultural relics.

The color of the roof tiles of the mansion is elegant gray. The front part of the mansion is the Office Quarter, while the rear quarter is the family residence and garden. The mansion is famous for not only the numerable cultural treasures but also the Kong Family’s Mansion Banquet, which it is said, follows a menu with quite a few imperial dishes for emperor.

The Confucian Cemetery, occupying more than 200 hectares, has served as the family graveyard of Confucius and his descendants for more than 2300 years.

Cemetery of Confucius is situated in the suburb north of Kong Family Mansion. It is the largest artificial cemetery in China, with a perimeter of over a dozen kilometers. It is also the most intact and the oldest survivor of family graveyards.

Together, the Confucian Temple, Confucian Family Mansion and Cemetery were inscribed in World Heritage List in 1994.

There is a popular saying in China that “South China raise talents while North China creates Saints”. It is absolutely true indeed. The  saints from north include Confucius, Mencius, Kong Ji, Zeng Shen, and Duke of Zhou, who were all came from Qufu, Shandong Province.

If you are interested in such  Chinese cultural attraction, please book your China Flights and come to Qufu.

Jack Li

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