china edition


Eastern Peak Temple

Located in the middle section of Chaoyangmenwai Dajie Avenue, the Eastern Peak Temple (Dongyuemiao) was founded in 1319 AD. The temple was the largest temple set up by the Zhengyi Sect of Taoism in North China to worship Emperor Dongyue.

The original temple took up 60 thousand square meter embracing an architectural complex of 7 identical, interconnected courtyards each leading to the next in a series and the central court is flanked by an east side yard and a west side yard. The entire layout features a complex of ancient buildings that incorporate the style of corridor-courtyard and one-story buildings which is a manifestation of architectural style for the 3 dynasties of Yuan, Ming and Qing.

Dongyuemiao Temple has been noted for "The three Manys", that is 'Many Statues of Gods, Many Couplets and Many Stone Tablets'. There are 76 groups of statues presenting a vivid picture of folk beliefs through various postures that dramatize social life and many different individual personalities.

The temple fairs at Dongyuemiao, being the earliest and the largest ones in the city, used to be the center of economical and cultural activities in East Beijing. The large number of stone tablets stored in the temple serves as important materials for further study into folk beliefs and social structure. An outstanding example is the 'Taoist Stone Tablet' that bears the calligraphy of the famous calligrapher Zhao Mengfu from the Yuan Dynasty and is of high artistic and historic value.