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Great Bell Temple

the beautiful huge bell in DazhongsiThe Dazhongsi (Great Bell Temple), located in Haidian District in Beijing City, was initially built in 1733, or the 11th year of Emperor Yongzheng's reign during the Qing Dynasty with the original name of Jueshengsi (Temple of Awakening). After a giant bell was moved from the Wanshousi (Temple of Imperial Longevity) to this temple in 1751, the 16th year of Emperor Qianlong's reign, it got its name of Dazhongsi (Great Bell Temple). The Dazhongsi in the past saw Qing emperors praying for rain and Buddhists conducting affairs.

Facing south, the magnificent imperial temple Dazhongsi was laid out elaborately and symmetrically, and consists of six courtyards. Standing from south to north are the principal buildings like Yingbi (Screen Wall), Shanmen (Main Gate), Tianwangdian (Hall of Heavenly Kings), Daxiongbaodian (Shrine of Greatness and Magnificence), Guanyindian (Hall of Avalokitesvara), Cangjinglou (Sutra Tower)and Dazhonglou (Tower of Great Bell). They are flanked by side hall, houses and east and west courtyards.

Great Bell Temple

The Dazhonglou is a unique building in Dazhongsi (Great Bell Temple) and a core of the temple. The whole structure, sitting on a huge blue-stone terrace, appears to have around upper part and a square lower part, symbolizing the ancient Chinese concept that "The heaven is round and the earth is square". The famous bronze Great the bell in DazhongsiBell was hanged in the tower. The Great Bell is also known as the Yongle Bell, because it is said to have been made during the reign period of Ming Emperor Yongle (1403-1424), over five hundred years ago. The nearly 7-meter high, 46.5-ton giant bell was so skillfully made that its sound could be heard 40 to 50 kilometers away. On inner and outer sides of the bell there cast clear and neat Buddhist scriptures in Chinese regular script and Sanskrit, more than 230,000 characters in total. The bell was praised as "the King of Bells".

The Dazhongsi (Great Bell Temple) complex is now the Ancient Bell Museum. The museum has 11 permanent exhibition halls. More than 600 ancient bells from past dynasties of China and foreign countries have been collected inside the museum. Through cultural relics, models and photos, the museum showcases the history, casting techniques, and musical and religious functions of bells.

 

Great Bell Temple Tour

After having a tour to Dazhongsi, travelers could easily travel to Yuanmingyuan or Beijing Zoo by subway Line 13 then transfer Line 4 at Xizhimen Station.